- If you are looking for the political body which forms the default organization Mage: The Ascension, try Council of Nine Mystic Traditions.
A Tradition is a group of mystically-oriented mages allied with the Council of Nine Mystic Traditions. That is, they believe in magic and understand that they manipulate magic to create desired effects. This contrasts with scientifically-oriented mages, who believe that they use Enlightened Science rather than magic, and this Science is manipulated to create desired effects. The Traditions' counterparts among the Scientists of the Technocratic Union (and in an earlier age, the Order of Reason) are called Conventions.
Although the Council did not technically exist until 1466, many Traditions count their origins to much earlier periods, as they existed as discrete magical societies. Many other Traditions are created from the joining of several disparate groups; as such, their formal creation may be fairly recent, but their component factions may have existed far earlier.
To date, eleven organizations have been counted as Traditions. The following list only counts their membership within the Council of Nine, not as separate organizations.
- Ahl-i-Batin (1466 - c.1920s?)
- Akashic Brotherhood (1466 - 2004)
- Chakravanti (Euthanatoi) (1466 - 2004)
- Chœur Céleste (Celestial Chorus) (1466 - 2004)
- Dream-speakers (Dreamspeakers) (1466 - 2004)
- Order of Hermes (1466 - 2004)
- Sahajiya (Seers of Chronos, Cult of Ecstasy) (1466 - 2004)
- Solificati (1466 - 1470)
- Sons of Ether (1904 - 2004)
- Verbenae (Verbena) (1466 - 2004)
- Virtual Adepts (1961 - 2004)
Additionally, the Hollow Ones are often considered a Tradition, and have been considered for membership on the Council on several occasions. However, the Hollowers have turned down membership and prefer to remain orphans.
As years go on, some Traditions fade and some new ones emerge. This has happened at least twice in the history of the Council: the Solificati got replaced by the Sons of Ether, and the Ahl-i-Batin got replaced by the Virtual Adepts.
Some minor groups have begun to spring up. They ally themselves with the Council of Nine, and their founding members are largely members of the Nine Traditions. They exist as mostly seperate entities, although aren't large enough to be considered Traditions in their own right. They are thus referred to as sub-Traditions.
- Disciples of the One Point
- Fellowship of Dee
- Order of Sophia
- Order of St. Albertus
- Spirit Alliance
- "Technocratic Borrowing"
- Unity of Thought
House Thig and the Lhaksmists are technically factions within existing Traditions, but are gaining enough momentum to, perhaps, one day be considered Traditions in their own right. They are mentioned here for completeness.