Monday, December 15, 2008

GD as an open document

In Golden Dawn today, there are essentially two camps.

There is the camp that believes that the work and lectures of the founders and earlier Adepts of the system is perfect and can not be changed. This camp tends to emphasize lineage.

Then there is the camp that believes that the Golden Dawn system can be changed by those who are currently in the system. This camp tends to downplay lineage, and totally ignores the concept of the Secret Chiefs (at least in the sense of them being the bosses of us all).

Readers of my posts and the lodge's website know what camp I am in; or at least, they should be able to figure it out relatively easily.

Both camps will agree that the system of Golden Dawn as we have it is not completed. It is just how to go about completing it that is in dispute. The parts that are not completed are the Inner Order and the Third Order.

The Secret Chief crowd say that this material is already in existence and that we must humbly submit to the orders of the Secret Chiefs to gain the material. They will occasionally point out that either of those Orders are actually teaching Orders; both emphasize private work. To which, I will respond "If after Adept Minor Theoricus, I am on my own, recieving just approval or dismay at my experimential results, what is the purpose of me trying to convince the Secret Chiefs and their supporters that I should be allowed to go past THAM?"

The other camp believes that Golden Dawn is an open document. Members of this camp may not even believe that a hundred percent correctness in the material is even possible. They believe that the task of completing the system falls to the current and future members.

This idea, that Golden Dawn is an open document, annoys a lot of leaders in Golden Dawn. They point out that it goes against what the founders of Golden Dawn said about the system. They point out that students can not know what works and what doesn't. They are reasonable arguments.

Except that the highest positions in all fields have always had to develop the next level, relying only on results and peer reviews to validate their ideas and theories (using the concept that it is not a theory if it can not be tested).

And what no one wants pointed out is that there is evidence that the founders and the later Chiefs of Golden Dawn were treating the system as an open document. But you didn't hear me suggest that idea, did you?


Gordon said...


It's like insisting on flying in biplanes rather than airbuses because powered flight was perfected a century ago.

Spiritual development may be an eternal goal by the technology used to get us there is bound to change.

Unknown said...

Dogma = bad news

If we are to use any system created by others, it needs to include the reasons WHY it was created in the way it was, or it becomes dogmatic. New users, particularly those in authority, will otherwise be free to twist it to their own purposes (see the history of pretty much every orgnised religion for examples).

If that reason why boils down to one dude who had some invisible friends only he could see... that's approaching John Smith levels of ego and blind faith.

I prefer to use the golden dawn as an excellent example of a comprehensive, internally consistent system, not the absolute truth.

Perhaps the grades stop where they do due to running out of sephiroht to represent them on before crossing the abyss. This, to me, implies that growth after Adeptus Theoreticus requires expansion to other systems, either by creation of completely new tools, or the adaptaion and integration of existing tools.