Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mysteries of posers

I will admit that there are some mysteries that I do not understand.

One of them is why anyone would want to be a poser (poseur) in the Golden Dawn community.

The reason that this question is going though my mind at the moment is that a new poser just showed up on one of the Golden Dawn forums, sprouting off a bunch of nonsense about the Vault of the Adepts. And I do mean nonsense.

I understand the sock puppets and the anoymous observers; their motivations are the same as their handlers (gee, that sounds so CIA, doesn't it?). I understand the mud slinging and the lawsuits (that is just the fun of doing business).

But I don't understand what is in it for the posers?

In this case, it might actually be a sock puppet laying the groundwork for a new claim; in which case, we will all laugh in the general direction of the insanity.

But if it is truly a poser, why? Where is the reward? The only people you can fool are those who are not even Neophytes; most of the rest of us learn our stuff relatively rapidly and can spot a poser a mile away. So what is the point?

If you have any idea, please feel free to post your opinions in the comment section. Enlighten me please.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Just in case, this is not let though

(This reply may not get though because I openly admitted that I do not trust L.E.S.'s Olive Branch, so I am posting it here too.)

So we should just abandon the whole field of magic until science can prove, or detect, that our results are caused by our rituals.

Not only that, we need to give up the use of electricity, machines, and families; I believe that they all work, but I don't understand enourgh about any of them to be able to prove causaility either.

Back to the caves with all of us. Civilization is unprovable.


--- In, "" wrote:>> >

[about the Golden Dawn using godforms in a way that is not actual history, and people claiming it is ok because it works]

We should get rid of this "but if it works then it works" anti-analytic approach. A jungle tribe may have produced their annual rainfall ovedr 100's or 1,00's of years by their ancient marshmallow-toasting rite or whatever. It works for them, but to claim any causality between the annual monsoon and marshmallow-toasting practices or beliefs is absurd.>

Mythical History vs Actual History

One of the things that people need to keep straight when dealing with the occult is the difference between the Mythical History and Actual History.

Both types of history have their uses in an esoteric setting. But one should be careful not to confuse the two.

Mythical history is the myths that we tell about the orgins of our techniques. For instance, Freemasonry at one time claimed that its origins were during the building of the First Temple in Israel.

Actual history is what really happened. Freemasonry, as a society with secrets, started in the 1600's.

There is a vast difference between the two.

Mythical history is useful for prop and setting in ritual. Actual history is useful for tracing the evolution of ideas though time.

One should never consider the one equal to the other. One should never consider one better than the other. They are both tools, nothing more. Keep that in mind whenever you hear people talking about history, lineage, and how their system is better than yours because it is historically accurate.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Olive branches

I am one of those people that you might refer to as slightly paraniod, especially when it comes to politics and business. This tendency extends to the world of occult Orders, covens and groups. I do not believe that those in power are telling the truth. This is specially true of their public statements.

I have seen too much; I have been stabbed too many times to take any public statement at face value. It is easy to say one thing in public, and have intentions completely different from the statement; it is even easier to say one thing and do something completely different, especially outside of public view. I treat public statements as public relation blurbs and advertising that are worth only the pixels they are printed with.

And given the history of the Golden Dawn community, I am leery of any olive branch that is held out. For the matter, I am leery of the statement that we must never have another witch war. I would love to see the occult community get along with one another.

But on the day it happens, Ha-Satan will skating to work and Hel, his Northern counterpart (sort-of), will inherit a tropical paradise.

I doubt that I am alone in being paraniod. While I have yet to consult with my fellow Bast Temple members about the latest development in the Golden Dawn saga, I am sure that a vote of caution will result.

In Hathoor Temple, there was a class about recognizing political statements. One of the questions that you were taught to ask when encountering a political statement was "What does the speaker hope to accomplish with this statement?"

And I think that question is really important to ask whenever an olive branch is held out. After all, peace is just a time in between wars to rearm...I did say that I was slightly paraniod, didn't I?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Short Story Link: Voodoo Economics

Voodoo Economics (The Lodestone Mine Incident)

Before you take money away from someone, you should ask yourself what they did to earn it. You may also want to ask yourself what are they likely to do when they get upset. Congressman Kelley forgot to ask both of these questions.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The First Family's Garden

A friend of mine just sent me a link to a story about the First Family's Garden: The Obamas to eat what they grow. I am pleased to see that they are doing this.

Now, personally, I don't grow a lot of my own food. I would like to grow more of my own food, but I have a few issues with my yard.

The first issue is that I am living in between two people who do not water their yards. Though that may change on the one side, unfortunately not the side that my garden is located on, thanks to the fact that the bank just foreclosed on their house.

(I could have sworn that their house was completely paid for when they inherited it from their father; given how the trash was piling up in the yard, I will not be able to say that I am going to miss them. And it makes my monetary situation look good in comparasion, but I digress...)

The second issue is that the house came with two black walnut trees. I have yet to compile a list of everything that dies in their presence; roses are one such plant that black walnuts kill off *sigh*.

The third issue is that me and my wife don't have the same vision for the yard. There have been a couple of occasions that I have worked an area and planted seeds, then she comes along and plants something else---so much for the work I just did.

So I have ended up growing mainly herbs, or weeds as any neighbor who like grass will refer to them. So far, it has not been an issue. But if I ever get neighbors who actually water their yards it might be.

My mugwort is coming back in, along with both types of catnip (catmint). The motherwort needs to be worked at; it was getting out of control last summer.

I am not sure what else I am going to try to start this year...but I have a dozen seed catalogs waiting for me. Maybe this year, I will attempt tomatoes again.

Anyway, if you can not tell, I am looking forward to spring and summer.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Are fair book reviews possible?

While I was working on my latest book review, I found myself wondering if it was even possible to do a fair and unbiased book review.

It might have been the fact that I could hear a voice in the back of my head saying "If you can not say anything nice, then do not say anything at all." I am not sure what one of my relatives said that, but I am sure that the voice is one from my childhood.

And with this particular book, it was natural to hear it.

The reason I considered writing a review for the book is simply the fact that the author rants and raves about a couple of bad book reviews that he recieved when the book came out; as in he gives links to the bad reviews...the freelance writer in me goes if I write a bad book review, will he give me free advertising too?

Probably not: my book review ended being a lot more favorable than I expected it to be. I actually found some merit in his book. Sigh. I am going to have to do my own advertising.

(My regular readers know how sad that makes me; I have never been really good at advertising.)

But over the years, I have done a lot of bad book reviews.

A few years ago, one writer that I know said that he would send a free copy of his book to legitimate book reviewers. What exactly is a legitimate book reviewer? I am betting it is one that you are sure is going to give you a favorable review.

Or at least it is if you do not know how books actually get sold. It is not the reviews that sell books, it is the word of mouth. Even a bad book review can sell books (calling something a train wreck makes people curious for some reason).

So it probably does not matter what my opinion of your book is, you just have to get people curious enourgh about it to sell copies.

My latest bad book review

Hear, Hear!

Come and read my latest bad book review.

This week's victim is David Griffin's Ritual Magic Manual.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Word of the Day: Cowan

The word Cowan entered wiccan circles though Freemasonry.

From Albert G. Mackey's (1908) Lexicon of Freemasonry:

Cowan: One of the profane. This purely masonic term is derived from the Greek kuon, a dog. In the early ages of the church, when the mysteries of religion were communicated only to initiates under the veil of secrecy, the infidels and unbaptized profane were called "dogs," a term probably suggested by such passages of Scripture as Matt. vii 6, "Give not that which is holy unto the dogs," and Philip, iii. 2, "Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision." Hence, as kuon, or dog, meant among the early fathers one who had not been initiated into the Christian mysteries, the term was borrowed by the Freemasons, and in time corrupted into cowan. The attempt made by some anti-masonic writers to derive the word from the chouans of the French Revolution is absurd. The word was in use long before the French Revolution was even meditated. I have in my possession a copy of the edition of Anderson's Constitutions, printed in 1769, which contains at p. 97, this word: "Working Masons ever will have their own wages *** let cowans do as they please."

Another interpretation of this term as a result of later investigation proves it to be a Sone Mason capable of building only dry walls.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Pirate Bay Trial

One of the news stories that I have been following recently is The Pirate Bay Trial.

I will admit that as a writer, I have mixed feelings about The Pirate Bay and peer to peer file sharing. On one hand, I do not like the thought that someone could rob me of potential income from my copyrights. On the other hand, there is a lot of junk published in the occult field that should not recieve the dignity of generating income for their creator.

Hopefully, I do not fall into that last category. But I probably do; remember I set the price of one of my works, the Three Officer Version of the Golden Dawn Neophyte Ritual, based on the fact that I figure that I would sell a single copy to a new budding lodge and then it would met a photocopier.

There is also the fact that many of the out-of-print books that I seek out end up going for hundreds of dollars on eBay. If they were really that special, the publishers would reprint them.

Now, I will admit using some torrents for video files. In my defense, I would like to point out that I could not find a copy of StarCops for anything close to a reasonable price.

There is also the fact that the fan generated content of Star Trek Phase II (formerly Star Trek New Voyages) is accessible though torrents. Of course, that is a non-profit operation, so they really don't care about peer to peer file sharing.

So maybe, I am a secret pirate supporter. Of course, this is like being a secret Regardie supporter. Some people understand it; other people will not.

Of course, the big argument behind the Pirate Bay trial is that the Pirate Bay is robbing movie, TV and music companies of income (I don't think that the publishing houses are terribly concerned with file sharing, but I could be wrong).

I am sorry, but the honest truth is that the companies are still not going to get the income even if they somehow manage to shut down all torrent sites. We will just have people doing this in other ways---"Bring your flash drives and I will give you a copy of the lastest season of Prison Break..."

We are living the opening days of a brand new business model (think of the days of rampant copying of other people work during the days of the early printing press). Newspapers, such as the Rocky Mountain News are going to fall due to losing classified ads to the internet, and mass media companies are going to have to figure out ways to sell their stuff on the internet despite the fact that the internet is as secure as an unguarded chicken in the same room as my cat.

Looking into my cracked crystal ball, I can make a prediction: twenty years from now, none of us will believe that the Pirate Bay was a real issue considering the new business model that we will end up with when media creators catch onto how to make money despite the internet file sharing capabilities.