Saturday, September 8, 2012

And this is all related somehow

My cat loves this statement from Joe Konrath. Copied and pasted [sic].
[As you read this post, please remember that I am trying to decide how much guilt I bear for the sad state of the Golden Dawn community. Is my dislike of the HOGD/AO poisoning the well? And do I need to completely walk away from Golden Dawn if the only way for peace and haramony to reign is for people like myself to completely disappear from the system?]

[And yes, yes--I know that I should just apologize to HOGD/AO, and never admit that I am struggling with the idea of peace with them. Even if it means that I have to completely disappear from the Golden Dawn scene thereafter.]

Occasionally, I treat the internet as if it is only talking to me (I think that anyone who has taken or considered taking the Oath of the Abyss does this--along with most of the rest of the people on this planet).

So today, I read Joe Konrath talking about how Amazon's allowing of one-star book reviews allows people to trash books:

Buying reviews isn't wrong. Using sock puppets isn't wrong. Leaving fake one star reviews isn't wrong.

It's shitty, and I wouldn't do it. And that's how I'm able to prove I'm right.

Amazon allows one star reviews. In other words, the existing system allows and encourages people to publicly trash books.

[Big snip, and then Joe Konrath continues to say:]

I pick on groups. Big groups who do authors harm.

I don't pick on authors behaving badly.

I'm fine with going against a mob of 400 even though it is an incredibly unfair, one-sided fight. (Hint: you'll need at least 500 more signatures before I'd consider us evenly matched.)

But I'm not okay picking on individual writers.

For those who are curious about how I feel about the on-going sock puppet and paid book review scandal that is big news in traditional book and ebook publishing (three normal novel authors have been caught using sock puppets and using paid reviews) and the resulting one-star campaign against them--just remember that I openly declared war on the HOGD/AO earlier this year when they decided it was ok to give a writer one-star reviews on their entire product line, and not just the two books that offended them.

(Previous to that point, I considered myself NEUTRAL despite the fact that I have been labeled as a menace by them since 2009 for disagreeing with them about the merits of certain books. It was this event that made me consider them enemies...because if they were willing to do it to one writer; sooner or later, I felt that they would do it to me.)

Personally, I think that if they really wanted to convince the writer to quit doing what they were doing, they should have just given him one-star reviews on the two offending books. Trust me, writers notice when just a couple of their books tank--and they tend to just write those books that continue to sell well. But I am obvivously biased because I gave both of the books in question good reviews...I saw merit in them because, well, see the end of this post.

Now continuing with this blogosphere is talking to me, consider the fact that Donald Michael Kraig is talking about the process and purpose of forgiveness and its effect on magick.

To figure out how this ties into the whole scheme, please remember that I have been asked to forgive the HOGD/AO for attempting to destory my reputation, which was their response to me saying that one should not use the tactic of condemning a writer's entire line of work. And I have feel that I am required to take responsibility for the fact that they believe (or "know" as they would remind me) that what went down was an attempt to destory the egregore of their group.

(Please remember that I do not believe that publishing the rituals of a group destorys its egregore--and that I saw the HOGD/AO encourage people to download pdfs of another group's material years ago. I presume that their knowledge changed because now they are against the publication of any information that was once oath-bound. In all fairness, one does need to remember that the material that they were encouraging piracy of was the material from the evil EOGD headed by Robert Zink. Today, the HOGD/AO would not encourage the publication of the EOGD material--how much things change in just a couple of years.)

In all honesty, I still find it hard to believe that there is an organized conspiracy against them. Especially, a conspiracy to destory their Order. But what do I know? I tend to be excluded from all the really neat conspiracies. (Yes, I used to be the last person picked when teams were decided.)

[For this lack of belief in an organized conspiracy, I apologize.]

The final piece of today's internet conversation with me came from Star Foster. Star was writing about how the pagan community needs a library to record and archive the modern pagan history. Star mentions that our pagan elders are dying, records are being lost, and we might have to repeat mistakes simply because we did not record the fact that mistakes happened in the first place.

Unfortunately, I honestly think that Golden Dawn itself needs such a library. And this, I definitely have to apologize. For I believe that the only sure way to preserve our history is for people to write about it, even if this results in biased and false versions of our history. Likewise, I believe the only way to ensure our rituals and lore are preserved is publication of said material.

I apologize for such beliefs, and my lack of trust that a completely secret underground esoteric tradition oathbound is the best way to actually safeguard oathbound traditions, lore and ritual techniques.

So at the end of the day, and this conversation with the internet, I will admit that I am guilty of thinking that the HOGD/AO is an enemy (if only for professional reasons), and that I have said bad things about them in the past. But I am fairly sure that I would react the same way if the events unfolded today.

Essentially, I need to apologize for being me. It makes me wonder how I managed to get into any Golden Dawn Order.

[Yes, yes, I realize that hitting publish on this post also requires an apology. But let's be honest, I believe that it is better to admit that I am struggling with making peace with the HOGD/AO than to just disappear and never write about Golden Dawn again. For that opinion, I owe someone an apology.]


Deanna Bonds said...

You might should apologize for apologizing too much ;-P

Peregrin said...

Well, it seems like the internet is talking just to ME :) I have recently talked with a few Wiccan folk here in Perth (the hotbed of occult activity) to try and start recording and storing our history. And now you link me to Star's article!

Never thought about it for the GD as a whole... interesting.

Well, anyway, thanks Morgan for being such a good conduit...this takes away all need to apologise for anything. Ever. :)

Frater A.M. said...

Apologizing to abusive people who exhibit Sociopathic behavior removes the responsibility from the abuser. You do not need to apologize for an opinion that was not meant to harm anyone! If people examine this, Davey-boy began attacking anyone who gave a decent opinion about, and did not trash an author's work. And proceeded to state that everyone who actually thought the text had worth was doing so out of some dark motive. His speech was condescending and anal, in the worst sense. He deserves nothing but being ignored. He is another parasitic capitalist transmuting dues fees into personal spending money. He IS NOT part of the GD community because he refuses to interact with even the least modicum of decency, and even less fraternity. He uses racism in the worst manner, and almost all his supporters lack the balls and ovaries to even state their real names. These are non-existent Shells and deserve nothing from the people they have constantly abused for years but silence and utter disdain.

Andrew B. Watt said...

I don't know what you're talking about .... the internet talking to you...

One of the elders of the Fire Tribe, Morwen Two-Feathers, recently published her memoirs. It's received mixed reviews here, but it exists. Surely a true library of pagan history should include it...

But it also seems to me that a true Pagan library must also include our banned books. Our history began in magic, and magic is rooted in the practice of owning and using "forbidden tomes" of various sorts. Indeed, a library becomes stronger, does it not, the more forbidden volumes it contains?

Clearly, I need to go out and buy more books.

Morgan Eckstein said...

It is safe to say that there are strong feelings involved about the whole idea of peace with the HOGD/AO as Frater AM comment shows. (I almost did not approve of that comment...but decided to because it touches upon something that disturbs me.)