Brief Overview of the Sabbat
The Sabbat is seen by those outside the sect as an organization with no purpose other than to prey on other Kindred and consume their vitae through Diablerie and to spread of dissension and rebellion throughout the younger members of Kindred society. It's members are seen by other Kindred as callous and vicious brutes who place no value on Kindred existence, let alone human life, and seem to revel in releasing the Beast during frenzy. They are entrenched in the occult, carrying on bizarre and unspeakable rituals unseen by outsiders.
This is a gross generalization and misinterpretation of Sabbat ideals. In fact, once one sets foot outside the walls of the Sabbat, a black cloud of misinformation permeates most discussions of the sect. It is this mystery of the Sabbat that has long fascinated younger Kindred of the Camarilla: indeed, some even turn their backs on the Camarilla to join the Sabbat's ranks, never to be heard from again by their comrades in the Camarilla.
Rumors and mistruths do indeed abound concerning the Sabbat, often fueled by the sect itself to prevent the Camrailla frommlearning too much. Most of these can be dismissed, although some of hold a ring of truth.
In reality, the Sabbat is founded on two basic principles: Freedom and Loyalty. Each vampire is taught that she is part of a larger reality in which her life is dependent on those with whom she is Bonded. The Sabbat also teaches new vampires that it is their responsibility to become as strong as possible in order to be effective warriors when the Antediluvians wake. Before the time of Gehenna, they must hone their skills through contest and battle with the servants of the Antediluvians, the Camarilla infidels.
The Sabbat is unliving proof of Darwin's theory, the strong survive. The Sabbat heavily bases the creation and recognition of new Sabbat on choosing only the strong and then putting them through trials to prove themselves. They do not see themselves as Kindred, but as Vampires and only use the word Kindred with sarcasm. The Sabbat consider themselves at the apex of the food chain. They speak as if they were the true sons and daughters of Caine and continually try to convert the Camarilla Kindred to their own wild ways. All within the Sabbat are Embraced by members of a pack and then are Blood Bound to each other. Vaulderie, the giving of blood from all Sabbat members to create a bond between the embibers, is practiced. Clan lines are often crossed to gain strength and although different packs within the Sect may arise by city, their loyalty to the Sabbat as a whole can be considered fanatical.
The Sabbat preach freedom from the ruling fist of Elder vampires. The Sect was founded on the principle that no vampire should be forced to die for the cowardice of those who created him. The idea behind the Vinculum is that this shared Blood Bond creates loyalty among all vampires of the sect and inspires them to unify in troubled times in order to destroy the enemy. Participation in the Vinculum also prevents one vampire from being secretly Bonded only to another. Like the Catholics they parody, the Sabbat see the ritual of Vaulderie, in which all participants spill some of their blood into a chalice and then drink from it, as sort of vampiric communion with Caine.
The Sabbat has very firm beliefs about all outsiders. Sect members are known for their distinct separation of everyone into a categorization of "us or them". To the Sabbat, all non-Sabbat are "them", regardless of whether "they" are Vampires, Lupines, Mortals, or whatever. The Sabbat does have a few allies, but the Sect cooperates only to a limited degree, and only when it is to the Sabbat's advantage.
Conflict within the Sect is dealt with through Monomacy, a dual, fought within the Arena. The winner wins the conflict and the respect of the loser. The Challenger sends the offender a challenge which must be promptly accepted or denied. If a Sabbat denies a challenge, he is usually branded a coward, and while no one may force a Sabbat to accept a challenge, the cowardly Vampire is regarded with suspicion by his superiors. If the offender subsequently takes an action deemed harmful to the sect, the Sabbat's superior will remove the Vampire's title an right to lead. Vampires who continuously abuses Monomacy as a way of achieving power over others are usually assassinated under orders of the Inner Circle. They do not like threats to their positions.
Sabbat feel they are superior to humans. They feel no sympathy for humans; indeed, to live and act human, to feel human, is against their nature. Sabbat is the chosen. Mortals are not considered even of the same race as Sabbat. Mortals are considered animals and treated as pets and food. Sabbat occasionally use mortals as followers, servants, and spies. Mortal retainers are viewed as property and their owner may use them in any manner they see fit. Some of the most faithful mortals may become ghouls. Each ghoul is Blood Bound to only one Sabbat Vampire and does not participate in the Vaulderie. The sponsor or owner, is held accountable for all the ghoul's actions.
The Paths of Enlightenment describe, to an extent, how each Vampire views freedom, loyalty and his own vampiric nature. Sabbat have no humanity, so the Paths are essential to character formation, as they provide the moral code by which the vampire lives. Freedom and loyalty can be taken in many directions and usually are. Most packs have common ideas of how these two principles function, and many share similar Paths, clans and political factions.
It is a Sabbat belief that anyone who is not serving the Sabbat is serving the Antediluvians and must be converted or destroyed. The Sabbat continues to plan and raise sieges against Camarilla-held cities in hopes of achieving this end. The Sabbat's primary goals include destruction of Camarilla Elders, Methuselahs and Antediluvians.