So you'd like to write about SAPPHIRE?
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So you'd like to write about SAPPHIRE?
Wouldn't you rather stick a fork in your eye?

I couldn't help but notice that many of you wish to write something about SAPPHIRE but are afraid of doing it wrong, find it too complicated, or have ideas that are unsuitable for this Group of Interest.

That's only natural. SAPPHIRE is an element of the SCP lore with an ever-growing complex, nuanced ideology.

To assist you, here is etiquette of what to do — or not to do — in a few points.

Origins of the Items

SAPPHIRE fights against anomalies. Therefore, they have little to no interest in creating them. However, since SCP items are what this site is about, there have to be at least some. These atheistic SCPs have multiple sources:

  • In 80% of cases, they are recovered or re-purposed external anomalies, related to religion if possible. For example, SCP-236-FR is based on Hades' helm, SCP-281-FR is based on Muhammad's swords and SCP-353-FR somehow has a Sikh bracelet in it. SAPPHIRE will confiscate these items and either destroy them or keep them/alter them if they can be useful in serving the cause.
  • Speaking of destruction, about 60% of the group's anomalies are, like GOC SCPs such as SCP-1609, SCPs that were destroyed, modified, or a result of these alterations. This also applies to the items mentioned before, as there is more to them than their religious nature: they have been altered. In the case of SCP-242-FR, the destruction of the Burning Bush shattered it into three new items: the weakened Burning Bush, the Flaming Atheist and the Throne.
  • In rare cases, the anomalies are created by SAPPHIRE themselves, such as SCP-137-FR (the brochures) and SCP-227-FR (the Horoscobooth). These SCPs were clearly created by the group to serve its own goals, and most often they are used in terror attacks. They must, more than any other, follow the few rules of SAPPHIRE's code of conduct. (Yes, one exists.)

Want a tip? Feel free to pick mythical objects throughout history and completely subvert their original purpose to make something twisted and surprising.

Functions of the Items

Virtually all SAPPHIRE items are useful. They don't just throw them into to the public for kicks. This means that to write a good SAPPHIRE article, it needs to be relevant to their interests. Luckily, they're not all that hard to understand.

  • SAPPHIRE attacks the paranormal. Anything that is anomalous and could be worshiped is their #1 target. All plans that could be used in any way to kill, destroy, trap, kidnap, poison, disintegrate or discredit a god, a messiah, a relic or anything remotely worthy of worship are welcomed. For example, the destruction of the Burning Bush is clearly the goal of SCP-242-FR.
  • SAPPHIRE attacks believers. Normal humans, in normal society. SAPPHIRE's goal is not to kill believers, but rather to kill belief. If killing unrecoverable believers is what it takes, then so be it. But if they could instead convert them — or rather, deconvert them — they will choose the latter. This is the case in SCP-164-FR, which turns creationists into dinosaurs, sacrificing a few to terrorize the remainder, and in SCP-137-FR which makes use of equal-opportunity torture to make your faith disgusting.
  • SAPPHIRE proves themselves right. SAPPHIRE believes in Truth and Science. Often Truth agree with Science, but sometimes it does not agree with SAPPHIRE's view of Science. In such cases, this needs to be fixed. This is especially true for SCP-281-FR, in which a flat Earth is made to be round. In the case of the aforementioned SCP-164-FR, it is made clear to everyone that dinosaurs exist. On the other hand, the Horoscobooth painfully punishes those who believe in astrology.

Want a tip? Make sure to be as creative as possible if you are going to make an object whose purpose is to destroy. Killing God can easily result in a bland and boring article. Find something more subtle. Look for loopholes, hold His children hostage, blackmail Him, trap Him in an impossible situation, convince Him that He doesn't exist.

Want a tip? Science-denial controversies abound in the news. Creationists and flat-earthers have already been mentioned, but there is also water dowsing, anti-vaxxers, crystal healing, almost all alternative medicine, various divination techniques, religiously-motivated homophobia and misogyny… a plethora of topical issues might be of interest to SAPPHIRE.

Anomalous Effects

SAPPHIRE has a somewhat complex ideology, but it can be visualized as a pyramid. At the top of the pyramid is an ideal, what they call the Diamond: pure Reason, devoid of superstition and misconceptions. Right below Reason is Human Life, with an overwhelming preference for non-believers, and below are less important elements dealing with with Civilization: Culture, Art, Abundance, etc.

Following this logic, a moral code emerges, even during terror attacks:

  • No mental manipulation! No memetics, no amnestics, no hypnosis, no psionic powers, nothing of the sort. The central goal of SAPPHIRE is to have people reject religion, and for this they will often terrorize the masses. After all, they are terrorists. But unlike those who believe Alesia was in the Jura mountains,1 this terror stays consistent with the logic it emerged from. If a person rejects God because they witnessed their family turning into dinosaurs or because they literally became a martyr — or because they simply heard a very convincing speech, that happens too — then it's fine, as long as it is a personal choice of their own volition. Re-programming minds is out of the question. At least, not directly.
  • No casualties. At least, not too many. Just the right amount. Okay, a bit more is acceptable, but exterminating the population is not the point. If death must occur, believers should come first, especially priests and preachers, i.e. those whose purpose is to make more people believe. An attack can have different scopes: if it targets a community, important figures will be the targets. If it is nothing more than a "regular" attack targeting the general public, an installation in a crowded area will suffice.
  • Apart from terror attacks, nothing too spectacular. In a terror attack, the goal is to cause terror in the hearts of Men to reach a broad audience. But SAPPHIRE will only use anomalies in public if they are certain it will cause more people to lose faith than to gain it. Belief originates from the anomalous, and showcasing it too much could prove counterproductive. If you can, write objects whose outcomes are more inexplicable than paranormal. Fully-developed dinosaurs roaming the streets, or people that casually vanish and reappear, are much better than a giant Buddha statue floating above Paris that shape-shifts as weeks pass.

Want a tip? No rule is set in stone. A very well-written SAPPHIRE article could make use of mind control, kill many people, and be spectacular. If you really want to write an article that strays from SAPPHIRE's ideals, just make sure it is well-justified. For example, you could explain that a lodge or some members of the organization went crazy and were then expelled or even assassinated following this treason.

SAPPHIRE's Means of Action

We are now discussing tertiary matters, but knowing the organisation's means can be crucial in determining the possible scope of an article. So let's keep in mind that SAPPHIRE is, fundamentally, a volunteer organization.

  • The financial resources of SAPPHIRE are variable but generally low. Among the more notable members of the group are patrons like the Silversteins and the Faustils, who have made fortunes and now fund a major portion of large-scale operations, e.g. buying the SCP-236-FR cruise ship or funding an expedition to the North Pole. Those are affordable to a wealthy individual, but nothing compared to what the Foundation, the GOC or other GoIs could do. Additionally, 90% of operations are carried out locally, thanks to members' contributions.
  • SAPPHIRE's human resources depend on who you include in it. SAPPHIRE is entirely based upon volunteering: those who can craft explosives will enter a RUBY squad, and those who graduated scientific studies will infiltrate the Foundation as EMERALDs. But no training or salary like Foundation guards; SAPPHIRE members train one another or on their own, and in total secrecy, much like your average jihadist.
  • SAPPHIRE's technological means are not bad, but not excellent either. A good number of SAPPHIRE members are part of the civilian scientific world: each person generally has access to advanced hardware and knowledge. Atheists master hard sciences but not occult sciences, and when they delve into it, they often begin with pseudo-scientific theories that they haven't completely disproved yet but are decades outdated by Foundation standards.

Want a tip? Low financial means do not make SAPPHIRE a secondary GoI. The main strength of SAPPHIRE, similarly to Are We Cool Yet, is in its clandestine nature. SAPPHIRE members are could be everywhere and anyone. They are ants in a network that stretches across the western hemisphere. SAPPHIRE includes high-ranking persons, wealthy persons, and well-informed persons. Furthermore, it is probably one of the few GoIs that are the closest to the civilian world, which the Foundation is sworn to protect.

SAPPHIRE's Political Stance

This is somewhat irrelevant, but has probably asked for once or twice. SAPPHIRE does not have a well-defined political leaning, since it is a mass of volunteers from various backgrounds. However, it seems obvious that one will not encounter typical right-wing Christian conservatives. So if the political background can help you write about SAPPHIRE characters, or visualize the general setting of their meetings:

  • The vast majority of their members, especially the more important ones, must be liberal to ultra-liberal2, a la Ayn Rand in the style of Elon Musk. They are often very involved in the hard sciences. Liberalism implies being free of any religious dogma and above power. Welcome to Rapture.
  • Another portion, a more proletarian one, must be very left-leaning, and also highly anti-clerical. SAPPHIRE is, as previously mentioned, a fraternal volunteer organization, and lodges can be created by just about anyone who has a bone to pick with a centralized institution like the Church, in the most Republican of ways.3 Hemovores, for example, as I personally picture them in Rooting out Evil are a minority where most members have fallen to the bottom of the social landscape. Atheism can be a last resort for the outcasts of the anomalous world.

Want a tip? These two political stances might seem contradictory, and they are. That's it. I honestly don't have advice on that. Atheism has many social layers: there is Jewish atheism, communist atheism that was instigated in the USSR, revolutionary anti-clericalism, atheism as a philosophical stance, liberal atheism which ferociously stands for pharmaceutical brands against homeopathy, anarchist atheism… if you wish, feel free to play around with all of that.

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