Saturday, December 31, 2011

Disclosure about upcoming disclosures

During the first week of the secular year, starting tomorrow actually, several disclosure statements are going to be issued by me. They are going to sound hostile...mainly because I felt like I was being forced to issue them by parties who have appointed themselves the Golden Dawn information police.

Exactly who the Golden Dawn information police are varies by the day of the week, hence why no names are mentioned.

I am issuing the statements as fair warning to the poor students that the information police say that the rest of the Golden Dawn community is conning and ripping off. But each disclosure statement undermines my own authority, makes the groups I belong to look like some alley scum, and serve no purpose other than to make someone else look like they are the only true authority on Golden Dawn. Hence, the hostile tone.

I know that given the fact that I have started to expand my writing into the realm of ebooks, it is only going to be a matter of time before the information police start to call me a crook, a conman, and ignorant flaming troll.

Therefore, I have decided to beat the rush and just issue some disclosure statements as fair warning that you should only be listening to their opinions about what is and what is not Golden Dawn. Yes, I am hostile---after all, I have seen what they say about other writers that I agree (partially) with and I do not like having to undermine my own authority just because someone cries that they and theirs is being flamed every time someone disagrees with them and their official version of what Golden Dawn is.

After the current round of disclosures, I may never issue anothe disclosure statement (outside of monetary involvement of product and service reviews) ever again.

I would love to think that I am judging the Golden Dawn information police wrong; but after watching them over the past couple of years, I know that they are going to come for me next. I have a choice between issuing a few hostile disclosure statements and getting back to work, or dropping out of the business of talking and writing about the Golden Dawn completely. Given the fact that I will not do the latter, I have to do the former.

Ye has been warned.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Misrepresentations and mislabels

A few days ago, I wrote a post where I was talking about the differences between the various esoteric camps and groups. It was a "live drop" into a blank day of a cycle of posts that I had already prewritten and prescheduled to kick off my secular (business) new year. (Actually, the posts were probably more about avoiding the harder money making writing that I should have been doing instead.) And it was a perfect fit for what was already in the pipeline.

Now, during the course of the post, I used the label "European Golden Dawn"---in my defense, I borrowed the term from someone else (opps) and at the time of writing the post, it matched how I was thinking. As was pointed out to me, European Golden Dawn is a mislabel. It lumps everyone in Europe into the same camp (opps). I also learned that I misrepresented the beliefs of at least one of the parties involved (opps).

Well, let me let you onto a little secret---I sometimes write comedy, and all professional comedians are professional liars. We bend the truth for the sake of a good joke. Or in my case, I bend the truth for the sake of an interesting blog post. My regular readers know this. I don't need to tell them that I am a trickster. My regular readers have read dozens of posts where I am busy poking fun and scorn on the parts of the system that I am struggling to make sense of. For me, the politics and bickering between the various esoteric factions is nothing more than one large farce.

The Golden Dawn lodge that brought me into the system labeled themselves, "Independent and Irregular." Call it truth in advertising. All Golden Dawn groups are Independent and Irregular once you step out of their group and start to look at them from the viewpoint of other groups. Pretend that you completely agree with any particular party and then look around at the other Golden Dawn groups---everyone suddenly looks Independent (for not obeying the Big Giant Head) and Irregular (for not believing in the absolute truth that the Big Giant Head teaches). And I do not care who you decide to presume is the Big Giant Head---the result is the same: everyone outside of their select group is a bunch of lunatics.

This is one of the dangers of our current political system in the Golden Dawn system. One can easily fall into the trap of only XYZ is right, and everyone else is wrong. One can also easily fall into using the labels that XYZ is using for the various other camps. It is easy to start to believe that your set of ideas are the only proper and true way of thinking and that everyone who disagrees is nothing more than a flaming troll. And worse of all, some of the Big Giant Heads encourage you to believe exactly this.

Another trap that you can fall into is to believe the misrepresentations that Big Giant Heads put forth about other groups. I was surprised that anyone took my misrepresentations of the the European Order seriously. (Yes, I could be a Big Giant Head---why not?!) Now, there is a grain of truth in what I said, but I took it to the extreme. The trick is to figure out what I actually thought was true before I carried it out to the extreme. (Of course, once you figure that out, you may not like what you see going on---which is why jesters were so important in the Middle Ages---please remember that you are not allowed to kill the comedian when he tells the truth.)

A nasty truth about esoteric groups is that unless you are a member of them, you don't know what is actually going on in them. And if they practicing an information embargo, it is even worse. Think about it---outside of one, two, maybe three of the top people, no one know everything about a group's purposes. There is always the posssibility of there being an ugly surprise waiting in the wings.

For instance, ignore what I said about the European Order's eventual goals. Look at what they said instead, and what they have done over the last thirteen/fourteen years (I was counting on my fingers here), and ask yourself "Why did they do and say these things?" And presume that Griffin (considering that he is their top level person) has really made contact with the Third Order just like he claims. Does Griffin really know why the European Third Order has contacted him? And what is their reason for wanting to bring Golden Dawn, an Order they abandoned, back into the fold?

If you can look at those words and actions, perhaps while believing in the Third Order contact, and not feel a touch of paranoia, then perhaps you are a better person than I am. Then again, my father had Italian friends while I was growing up; I can't help being paranoid. (Please leave your comments about my misrepresentations and mislabels of Italians in the comment section.) My goal here is not to tell you the truth; it is to make you think for two seconds about the dryrot that is weakening the entire Golden Dawn community. After looking at Griffin and his Order's action, look at all the other Orders and leaders. In the end, can you trust anyone?

Please bear in mind, you can belong to an Order without fully believing in its leader and without fully supporting that group's actions. It is how most rational people survive inside the esoteric Orders. It is how I have survived, and continue to survive---but then again, I am just a beacon of rationality, ain't I?

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Are flame wars good for business? (Blog Advice)

My superpower is pissing people off. Seriously.
One of the things that you see quite a few new bloggers do is to attempt to please everyone. There is a problem with this approach---you tend to end up with a vanilla blog that no one reads (not even your own mother). Awhile back, I started to read blogs written by pro-bloggers (bloggers who were making a living by blogging). And all the pro-bloggers seem to think that you cannot have a successful money-making blog without upsetting the occasional reader.

This opinion made me reconsider the recent policy by some to shut up anyone whose opinion upsets someone else. What if avoiding the flames is actually harmful to business?

(By "business," I mean getting eyeballs to your blog.)

Looking around at the various Golden Dawn blogs that I am aware of, I was stuck by the pageviews of the blogs that shouted flame war the most, allowing the most trollish comments through---the more irate the comments, the more views they exhibited.

Now, I will admit I was not scientific in my approach; I was using the numbers from the widgets that bloggers willingly displayed. I am not sure if the numbers can be gamed or not. What I do know is that if the numbers are even half-right, these people who are fanning the flames and allowing trolls to post are getting a lot more pageviews than I am.

And over the last few years, I have watched two Orders basically run campaigns where they claimed that others were attacking them. It reminded me of the tactics that various bad governments used to control the minds of their population. I don't foresee either group changing their tactic any time in the near future. Obviously, instilling the fear of others into their membership is good for their business.

Now, I am still not completely sure that flame wars are good for business, nor am I sure if they are bad for business. But I do know one thing for sure. Trying to avoid a flame war is bad for my business. Let me explain.

Over the last year, there have been several times that I had a really good blog idea...then I would realize that it would upset someone, and I would not write the post. That is right: the fear of causing flame war prevented good blog posts from being written. It is the French method of losing wars---surrender before the fighting begins. (Leave your rage about my bad attempts at humor in the comment section.) Basically by allowing the internet fire department to control my writing, I went silent which just gives the victory away to anyone who is willing to buck the trend.

Look around the Golden Dawn blogosphere. What do you see? A lot of silent blogs. I suspect that it is because no one wants to post for fear of causing a flame war. I am not sure that it is good for business. I know that it is hurting my own business. Is it hurting yours?

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

When is it flamewar?

One of the things that I have been debating lately is where is the line between discourse and flame war in the Golden Dawn community. It has became an obsession as the beginning of the year approaches and I am writing out the disclosure statements that start to go live after the first of the year.

And the conclusion I come to presents a sticky wicket for me.

As far as I have been able to determine from the outcries of the internet police is that if someone does not agree absolutely with your opinion, your lesson plan, your Grade system, and your version of Golden Dawn history, then it is flame war. Even with something like a book review, unless you agree completely with the other person's opinion, then you open yourself up to being accused of being a member of the flame war trolls tenth division.

If you know me, you immediately see my problem. I don't agree a hundred percent with anyone's opinion. The short list of people that I disagree with (to a lesser or greater extent) includes Pat Zalewski, Nick Farrell, Chic Cicero, Steve Nicohols, Tony Deluce, Sam Robinson, Tomas Stacewicz, David Cherubim, Aaron Leitch, Robert Zink, and David Griffin. And the list goes on and on. (If I did not mention you, it is simply because I do not want to spend days typing out the names of every known member of the Golden Dawn community.) Some of these people I consider friends---others I would never even remotely consider having a drink with.

Basically, I do not agree a hundred percent with anyone's opinions. But that is where the line in the sand has been drawn: if you do not agree a hundred percent with someone, then you are guilty of being in a blood feud with them. Therefore by the rules being shouted the loudest, I am at war with the entire Golden Dawn community, even the people that I consider my friends.

There is a few dangers with this strict hundred percent agreement standard.

For one, it kills the diversity of the tradition. If everyone must agree with everyone else all the time, then you have no difference of opinion and you can have no discourse. The community will just become a fan club for whoever managed to get the others to agree with them. Of course, this is exactly what I suspect some people want---they want to be the only game, the only true Golden Dawn authority on the block.

It also leads to the possibility of abuse, monetary and emotional, of the entire Golden Dawn community. One of the worst things that could happen to the Golden Dawn is for a single person to corner the entire market---they would be free to abuse the members of the community any way they want simply because there would be no other options. And worse, if you disagree with the abuse, you are the one that is guilty, not them.

And it has already led to a double standard being applied to the various fora and blogs. Comments bad-mouthing other parties are let through despite the fact that if such comments were said elsewhere about the moderator, they would be labeled flame war attacks. Basically, you can say anything you want about other people in the Golden Dawn community, provided that you agree with the moderator of the online community you are posting to.

The cries of flamewar has split the Golden Dawn community is several camps, and honestly I don't think that the wounds will ever heal.

Now, I will admit that is some flaming going on in the Golden Dawn community. There are some things being said that I look at and realize are nothing more than "attack ads." Interestingly enourgh, the replies of the internet police are no better; in fact, sometimes their replies are actually worse. I think that we should have some concern about the possibilities of flame wars being conducted, but I think that it is an error to insist on a hundred percent agreement standard.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Growing abyss between schools of thought

One of the trends that I noticed over the past year is the growing abyss between various schools of thought. In US politics, the gap has grown so wide that I foresee nothing but badness occuring in the upcoming Presidental election (it is the rich and the poor brainwashed by the rich vs. the poor). In paganism, there is growing gap between those building on the past and those building on the concept that it is a newly invented religion. In Wicca, the gap between the secret coven members and the public anything goes witchcraft continues to widen.

What all these situations have in common is that the differences of opinion, perhaps the very bedrock of ideas that the schools of thought are built upon,are creating differences in the language being used so wide that clear communication is being blocked. This communication gap may or may not being

This type of situation is also occuring in Golden Dawn. For years, we have suffered from the difference between the self-initiates and the classically trained and initiated Temple (lodge) members. Golden Dawn has always lost a certain number of people to the fact that active Golden Dawn lodges are hard to find. The couple of work-arounds that has been developed to address the problem are highly questioned in a few quarters.

And for several years, we have seen the growing abyss between Robert Zink and certain members of his Order. This spring, it finally broke the EOGD into two camps; and earlier this month, it became three camps. It looked like a repeat of the Revolt of the Adepts for awhile there.

Then we have the latest and greatest difference of opinion to develop in the Golden Dawn community. There has been a growing abyss growing between the European school of Golden Dawn and those schools that originated elsewhere in the world.

The primary issue is whether or not to accept the existence of an European Third Order---acceptance of such implies that you are willing to follow their public Head and spokesperson, are willing to increase your level of secrecy to the point where all published material are no longer considered valid (including the Mathers material) and all the rituals and lessons have been rewritten to re-install absolute secrecy, and are willing to be expelled if one of your fellow lodge members breaks their secrecy oath. Acceptance also implies that all modern developments of the Golden Dawn system (aka any that developed after the Cipher Manuscript) will someday be abandoned.

Ok, maybe it is not that severe...but given the fact that no one (outside of a couple of selected spokepeople) are able to talk about what is going on in that camp---well, one can only imagine what is really going on.

What one does not need to imagine is the lack of communication between the two schools. For the person who does not keep track of such things, here is the scorecard: The European school insists that all modern developments (before 1888) of Golden Dawn are wrong (including Mathers) and that Golden Dawn needs to be restructured according to the precepts of the original parent organization---all statements of the modern school are labeled flame attacks. The modern school insists that the original parent organization does not exist and has never existed, and that it is a shell game to conceal who is really the Head of the European school---furthermore, the modern school is slightly upset that all new developments must generally be abandoned to return the system to its 17th century glory.

Ok, maybe it is not that severe...but both sides refuse to communicate with the other party until they agree to play by their rules.

Of course, this scorecard summary ignores those of us who believe that the Golden Dawn developed from an earlier system, but that contact with Third Order was broken for so long that the modern Golden Dawn does not have to answer to the European Third Order---in other words, we have been separate systems for a long time and no longer have much in common. To reunite the two schools means destorying one of them---someone has to lose in order for there to be a reunification.

Now, the big question is do I foresee this abyss of difference, and the lack of communication between the schools, going away any time soon? No. In fact, at the point of time, I foresee the pagans, the Wiccans (and witches), and the American political system healing their differences long before the European and global Golden Dawn communities heal theirs.

Monday, December 26, 2011

One Pot Witchery Stone Soup (ebook review)

ebook review: One Pot Witchery Stone Soup---the Hidden Grimoire of the Kitchen Hedge Witch (Barbara Ann Daca).

A few years ago, I spent a lot of time hanging out at Herbs and Arts, one of the occult shops here in Denver. At the time, Morning Glory was running the shop. There were a lot of evening classes held there during this time period, plus several that happened on the weekends. I took several classes from Morning Glory; I also took a class from Cassandra, a kitchen witch.

One of the relics (it is a relic to me) that resulted from this time in my magical training was a notebook that had the stray lines of ritual, wise sayings, cooking notes, and herbal recipes in it. And One Pot Witchery Stone Soup reminds me of that old notebook of mine.

One Pot Witchery Stone Soup is one part cook book (there are a couple of recipes I need to try), one part spell book (there are a couple of spells I need to try), and one part collection of lore and wise witch sayings (dressing in red for your weddings ensures faithfulness in bed---I did not know that, but I do like the idea now that I do).

My only issue with this ebook is the formating (Kindle version). It has all the earmarks of the print copy file being used for the ebook. There are places that sections are muddled together, and there are a couple of places where I am sure a different font was used and stripped out when it was converted to ebook form (it is either that or those who taught me certain things were using a different script style---if you know it, you will spot it). The author might have been better off creating a clean file for the ebook creation process. But let's be honest, all writers working in the ebook trade, including myself, are experiencing a learning curve on the proper ways to format ebooks. The information in the ebook far outweighs the formating issues.

I give this book four out of five pentacles.

[Disclosure notice: this ebook review was based on a free ebook copy being given out by the author for promotional purposes.]

And if you would like a copy of this ebook, the author is giving away free copies until December 30, 2011 on Amazon.

(Copying from the author's Facebook page posting)

Please Share, Re-Copy, Foward and Help us Get to 100,000 Downloads!*FREE*
Download our book From Monday December 26th 2011 to Friday December 30th For *FREE*FREE*FREE*FREE*FREE*FREE*FREE*!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thank YOU! Thank YOU! Thank YOU! Thank YOU! Thank YOU! +One Pot Witchery

Sunday, December 25, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Bonus Kitty 5

My cat's favorite Christmas carol.
This is the Christmas Kitty that caused me to inflict a bunch of funny cat pictures on you this holiday season. It reminds me so much of one of the cats that I own---or does he own me? This morning, my wife gave him a new toy and within a couple of hours, he had destoryed it. I am quite sure that if we got a Xmas tree that he would remove most of the ornaments before the day was done. Nevertheless, I do love my wild rescue cat. And with this picture, we close out another holiday season---next on the Gleamings from the Golden Dawn is a series of posts that will be labeled annoying and trollish. Ye have been warned.

12 Days of Christmas Kiities Bonus Doggie

Yes, it is a Christmas doggie.
Occasionally, I do find a cute picture of a dog or puppy. In tribute of Anubis, I present you with a Christmas doggy.

12 Days of Christmas Kiities Bonus Kitty 4

Witch kitty got Santa voudoun doll.
One of the things that amuse me as a pagan is the number of Santa figurines, pictures, and toys there are available for sale. If each one was an icon, Santa would be a pretty powerful Saint. I think it is readily apparent what we really worship in this country.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Bonus Kitty 3

It is the tin foil hat that causes the crazy.
A Xmas ritual in many pet owners' homes is the annual is the "let's put a bow" on the cat. This is a ritual that tends to make most cats think that their owners are crazy. And they may be right.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Bonus Kitty 2

Cats meet window shades and make Santa sad.
I presume that many cats out there did not get all they dreamed of from Santa. Of course, one wonders if Santa is having as hard time as the rest of us in the distressed global economy, or if the cats were merely bad kitties. Just for the record, it is wrong to blame the lack of Xmas presents on bad behavior when it is actually the lack of money. Don't tramatize your cat's ego just to disguise the fact that Santa's budget is scrapping the bottom of the barrrel.

Merry Mithras Day or Christmas or Yule or whatever!

Happy holidays to all---no matter what your holiday or religion.

(Please remember that I am a non-Christian, aka evil Wiccan, who believes that Jesus was a great man, but not necessarily the Messiah and Savior; furthermore, I believe that he was born during another time of the year.)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Bonus Kitty 1

Santa Claws is coming.
Yes, there are bonus Christmas kitties to be shared with you---which just proves that the internet exists merely to share cat photos. For the record, I would insist on doing a second round of Christmas kittes because technically, the twelve days of Christmas is actually the twelve days following Christmas (the things one learns when they start hanging out with medievalists).

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 12

Hear that? Santa is coming to town.
Tonight is the night. Santa is coming to give presents to all the good kitties and maybe some of the bad ones too. I know my cats will be waiting for him. They are hoping for fresh shrimp and catnip.

Friday, December 23, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 11

Is your kitty on Santa's naughty list?
I am sure that one of my cats is on Santa's naughty list...perhaps even permanently. No names mentioned, Mr. Everything Looks Like a Cat Toy---including jewelry, hair ties, computer cables---not only does everything look like a cat toy; he can also pull apart actual cat toys apart in a matter of minutes. I guess I cannot blame him; he is one of the rescue cats. As I type this entry, he is helping himself to the packing peanuts and batting them all over the floor---my wife is not going to be pleased with the mess that he is making. And yes, I am also on Santa's naughty list because watching him do this amuses me.

(And for the curious, this is my 666th post on this blog...and it is about one of my cats---go figure.)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

2012 Doomsday Disclosure Notice

Just a heads-up to everyone that I am jumping on the 2012 doomsday wagon. As of yesterday, you had just one year left to live. Bwahahahaha! Over the next year, I will be reminding you of your decreasing time left.

It is not that I actually believe that the end of the world is coming on December 21, 2012; it is that jumping on the bandwagon allows me to write a series of survival posts. I mean how else would I justify writing about MREs? helpful skills? other great doomsdays? It is either hop on the bandwagon or completely ignore these juicy topics.

And we all know that I am not going to be the only blogger doing so. It is just that I will not be calling it a Shift or painting it with any pixie dust. After all, I believe that when doomsday happens, we will have failed to see the asteriod with our name on it. Instant death, no warning, that's a comforting thought, isn't it?

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 10

Secret Chief attacks false Santa.
I love pictures of cats sitting on Santa's lap. Of course, being cats, occasionally you see a picture of a Christmas Kitty trying to take out the eyes of the evil Santa. Kitties know where their presents come from; their mommies and daddies buy their toys and treats at Petsmart---Santa is just trying to take the credit for someone else's work.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Shocking truth of the Shroud of Frater RC

[Thanks to Ananael for calling my attention to the latest research on the Shroud of Turin; you can go to his blog Augoeides to read his reaction to the research.]

Full length negatives of the Shroud of Turin.
The latest research on the subject of the Shroud of Turin reveals that the image could have been made by a flash of ultraviolet light. Of course, this leaves two problems for those who believe that the Shroud of Turin is the shroud that Jesus Christ was buried in: One, where did Jesus find a ultraviolent laser in his time period; and two, why does the carbon dating of the shroud place the Shroud's origin between 1260 and 1390?

Being the mad occultist I am, I think I have a solution; but the Christians are not going to like it. I don't think that the Shroud of Turin is actually the burial cloth of Jesus Christ. Instead, I propose it is the burial cloth of the founder of the Rosicrucian movement, the burial cloth of Frater RC himself.

My theory has the benefit of bringing the Shroud into a myth that uses temporal dates much closer to the carbon dating results. Plus my theory has the additional benefit of explaining how the lasering of the cloth occurred---quite simply, when Frater RC died and assumed his rightful place in the Rosicrucian hierarchy as a solar being, his corpse emitted a flash of ultraviolet light which imprinted his image onto the burial cloth.

Therefore, the Italian scientific community has proved evidence that not only was Frater RC a real person, they have also provided proof that ascension into the solar body is possible. Sounds like a win-win to me...unless you are a Christian that believes the myth that Jesus was buried in the Shroud of Turin.

Shroud of Turin before its 2002 restoration.

Blessed Solistice

It is the solistice ritual of the world famous Cat Henge.
Tonight is Winter Solistice here in (oh my god, it is freaking cold out there) Colorado. So tonight will be the longest night of the year (beware of creatures that only come out at night), and tomorrow the days will start getting longer. I know that there are some people who like to go "drumming up the sun" at Red Rocks, but I prefer to sit on the couch inside the nice warm house (some Viking I make, right?). Then again, it is not a crime---my cat prefers me to stay inside the house. So cuddle up with your loved ones, the dogs and cats (and your human family if the pets let you), and know that the days are going to start getting longer again...unless you live in the Southern Hemisphere, in which case, prepare for Fall and Winter coming.

The solistice (oh who are we kidding?! everyday) ritual of warming up the couch.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 9

Ho Ho Ho says Christmas Kitty.
This cat just looks full of Christmas spirit, doesn't he? I am just amazed at the number of people who succeed in getting their cats dressed up for Christmas. And all this time I thought that the holiday costumes at Petsmart was only for the humans.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Bon Jovi is a zombie (Blog Advice for Occultists)

It worries me that Jon Bon Jovi thinks New Jersey looks like heaven.
One of the job skills you must develop as a Golden Dawn newshound and occult blogger is the ability to separate real news from the lies and hoaxes. Bloggers on the occult scene work in an envirnoment that can best be described as a sewer with the bits that float to the top being...well, you get the idea.

As an example of how to separate real news from the truth, consider the news that Jon Bon Jovi is dead. Yesterday, social media was awash with the news that Bon Jovi was dead...of something.

I generally ignored the news. I didn't believe it because I did not see something that would make me believe it---reports and links to sites that I trust. As long as it is just rumor, then I do not place much stock in it.

And I saw nothing on the ten o'clock news about it last night either. I consider that a red flag. Going back to Facebook, I noticed that the official Bon Jovi fanpage had posted a picture of Bon Jovi holding up a handwritten sign with the date and time. The ghost of Bon Jovi also wrote that heaven looks a lot like New Jersey---I resisted the urge to make a joke about New Jersey.

Of course, some people thought it was a hoax---the picture of Bon Jovi that is. Their proof? A blog called the dailynewbloginternational. A blog that was started yesterday, has just four posts, including the Hello World prompt that WordPress puts on your newly open blog (it can be removed if you care to do so) and two about Megan Fox being the 14th hottest woman in the world complete with shameful incidents and a case of HIV.

Surely this blog is a better source than the Washington Post which posted an article this morning that includes the fact that Bon Jovi played a benefit concert last night.

Ahh, lets cut the difference and presume that Jon Bon Jovi is dead and still walking around. So that gives us the possibility of him being a zombie (my personal favorite), a vampire, a Cyclon, a clone, or someone with a doppelganger or maybe a secret twin.

The story of his death and rebirth (Bon Jovi is beginning to sound like Jesus, isn't he?) just illustrates one of the big hazards of being a blogger focused on the occult. The occult scene is full of accusations that various people are criminals, frauds, con-artists, sex-perverts, drug-users, delusional, crazy, morons, and generally untrustworthy. These claims are always proclaimed by people who claim to know the truth.

You have to figure out who you trust and who you don't. For instance, I never trust a brand-new blog shouting the latest shocking truth about some occult leader being a crook. Nor do I trust anyone who shows up on the forums and starts their posting history by revealing the fact that they know someone is really a drug dealer.

I will admit that my personal method of weighing the truth is not suitable to everyone. I develop relationships with people that I know are in the occult, and over the space of time I watch them. If they make a habit of lying to people and bad-mouthing people on a regular basis, I don't trust them. I watch what information that they are willing to share. I perform exit interviews when they leave their respective Orders. I compare what various people are saying.

In other words, I treat the fora and blogosphere as if I was an old style journalist. Or possibily an intelligence officer. Or law enforcement agent. Or someone who worked with a lot of blinded occult sources.

I also look at the possible motives for people to say what they are claiming. Are they trying to undermine a rival? Are they just begging for attention? Are they trying to prove that they are the one and only person who knows the truth? And does their story match what my other sources are telling me?

Remember that as a blogger writing about the occult and the people who dabble in it is much like working in a sewer. Don't trust what floats to the top. After all, trolls and flamers are fond of hanging out in the bathroom writing lies on the walls.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 8

The Xmas tree had to die, says laser cat.
This is as good as a reason for a Christmas tree massacre as any other, isn't it? And I will admit that having been taunted, I occasionally feel like striking back myself. Maybe it was a French tree.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Working on some future blog posts

The key to Christmas victory is the element of surprise.
While many of my readers would be quite happy with 365 cat pictures a year, other readers would actually like to see some blog posts about Golden Dawn---hehe, just goes to show my audience for this Golden Dawn blog is not super-focused---it is an organic audience.

For those who would like more Golden Dawn related stuff, I am working on a few Golden Dawn entries. Well, struggling with a few Golden Dawn entries. Well, being defeated by the entries because they are threatening to call the blog anti-flame police after me.

One of which is an update to the numerous disclosure statements that are on this blog. No matter how I write it, you can hear the resentment that I feel about having to state the obvious just so I am not accused of being a flaming troll. Not that disclosure statements actually help, they just move the target to other beliefs that I have about Golden Dawn which I am unaware are evil ideas.

The reason that I have to issue yet-another-damn-I-am-an-individual-not-a-loyal-follower disclosure statement is that I am also working on a post that concerns itself with the Cipher Manuscript. Yes, that is dangerous ground, especially when combined with my beliefs.

I am also working on a couple of ebooks: one Golden Dawn related, the other Abramelin related. Some of the material from these future offerings may make their way onto this blog. Of course, both of these ebooks will require me to issue disclosure statements shouting that I am not an expert and that you really should only listen to approved sources.

The underming of my own authority is what annoys me the most about having to write disclosure statements. Legally, I am not required to write any disclosure statements outside of the ones that are tacked onto the end of product and service reviews, and those merely need to say whether I received any money, product or service for the review. But some people got it into their head that every statement that does not agree with their version of Golden Dawn needs to be accompanied by a statement that undermines one's authority, and states that they are the one and only true Golden Dawn. Or at least, it feels that way. The problem with trying to play fair is that it automatically puts you into a losing position, especially when the other players are cheating. Of course, this whole paragraph needs a disclosure statement that says that I am annoyed and not talking about anyone who has appointed themselves the Golden Dawn blog police.

Of course, I should disclose the fact that someday I am going to get so sick and tired of doing disclosure statements that undermine my position that I am going to quit doing them and allow the chips fall where they may. At that point, I might venture what I really think is going on in the Golden Dawn community---and no one is going to like that. Let's hope that it does not come to that...because I learned how to be a flaming troll from the best of them.

Here is looking forward to the New Year---remember I have interests outside of funny cat photos. And consider keeping that pair of lead-lined long johns that your grandmother just gave you; they might be needed.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 7

Yes, cats would like to have homes for Christmas.
A warm home, a kind human, a clean litter box, and lots to eat is on the wish list of the cats that are homeless. Remember to do your part and get your pets fixed---there are enourgh homeless animals out there already. Cats who get fixed live longer and healthier lives. (The same goes for dogs.)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 6

You can meet a Secret Chief in disguise at work.
Is it wrong to dress the cat up as Santa Claus and send him to work to catch slackers and loafers? Probably. I bet someone is getting a hairball in their stocking for Xmas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 5

Maybe kitty is bad because he does not like what you got him.
If you tell a cat that it is a "nice kitty" several million times that merely brainwashes you into thinking that it is a good cat---it does absolutely nothing to change the cat's actual nature.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Slow GD News week isnt it?

I was worried that something interesting might happen in the Golden Dawn blogosphere while I was busy writing all the papers that I had to do for this semester's finals. Turns out that was a needless fear--so far, I have only came across an "April's Fool post" and a rerun. Obviously, it has been a slow news week for Golden Dawn. So, I guess I will just have to give you a bonus Christmas kitty---thank the lack of flames for all the Xmas Cats you are getting.

What is such a nice cat doing with such a creepy guy?
Remember to give a shout out in the comment section if you are a fan of the show.

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 4

Another cat's Christmas wish list.
Christmas is for the birds--yummy, tasty birds. My cats would like theirs cooked in BBQ sauce. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 3

The annual truth telling ritual of Christmas?
This Christmas Kitty looks slightly disgrunted. Don't blame him--I am not quite sure what the costume is supposed to represent. Woe be to the poor Christmas tree that he takes his frustrations out on.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Kitties Day 2

A favorite Christmas song for my cat.
A Christmas cat dressed as a reindeer and singing a Christmas carol, what could be more festival?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

12 days of Christmas Kitties Day 1

Catnip is on my cat's Christmas list also.
Yes, it is that time of year again---that time of year that we give thanks for all the Christmas themed cat photos out there.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

We are not warring against Christmas

As most of my regular readers know, I am not a Christian. I am a tree hugging Wiccan, who has one foot in the Norse camp and one foot in the Egyptian camp. I have studied some Christian and Jewish symbology through my membership in Golden Dawn, but I have no desire to change my religion. This background makes watching certain trends interesting---perhaps in the ancient Chinese curse sense.

One of the big trends at the moment is the idea that there is a war against Christianity and all its aspects in the United States. This includes Christmas. And supposely, the pagans are the ones waging it and are being led by President Obama.

It is that last part that you need to play attention to, for it is what the whole trend is really about.

Politicans in their infinite wisdom, having decided that Obama is the cause of all of society's ills, and they want the man out of office. And the best way to do this is to convince you that he and his evil minions are waging a war against the Christian religion. The reason that this is effective tactic is because the majority of the population of the United States is Christian (80 percent).

Religions in America.
Please note that my religion is not even large enourgh to show up on the piechart.

Therefore, if you are after the soul of the voter, the best way to do it is to claim the the evil twenty other percent of the population is guilty of trying to change the United States into Babylon. Of course, you must be kept ignorant of certain truths in order for the politicians, who have your best interest and not the big business in mind.

For instance, you must remain unaware that the United States was not meant to be a Christian country---the Founding Fathers were concerned about what happens when a state religion is implimented, and they remembered how the English King had treated them. Therefore, you are allowed to be any religion you want to be---just like I am.

You also must remain ignorant of the fact that Jesus' birthdate is not recorded in the Bible. The decision to make it December 25th was actually a Catholic decision; it was about converting the worshippers of Mithras, a Roman sun god, to Christianity. Christmas and its customs actually has nothing to do with Jesus.

You must remain ignorant of the fact that the pagans merely would like to be able to acknowledge their own holiday, a holiday that was stolen from them. It is not really a war---we merely want to wish you a happy holiday without having to claim Christ as our Savior.

So please forgive me when I wish you a Happy Holiday without acknowledging your god.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Are your book reviewers clones?

Given the few books that come out in my chosen field, I tend to check out the new ones as soon as they become available...or at least, I check out their sales page immediately; even through at the moment, I have no money to buy books. Nevertheless, I do find some interesting reading.

Like tonight, I checked out the Amazon page for a book that just came out---no name mentioned---and noticed that it had already gotten four five-star reviews. Actually, there was only four reviews all together. And they were glowing reviews. And all dated December 6th. Get the picture?

Now, as a scholar and a writer, I found myself curious about what other books these people were buying. After all, maybe I can sell them something. Upon looking at the other reviews that they have done, I rapidly realized that I will not be selling these readers any books. I had gotten the picture.

Each of them had brought a baby clothing item, a baseball book, and this new occult book. By the way, the baseball book is the exact same book. And these are the only three reviews that these four people have done. Get the picture?

So this book is selling to a very specific audience, one who has a new baby, only read baseball books written by a fan of the Hitchhiker Guide to the Galaxy, and who thinks this new occult book is the bees' knees. Get the picture?

I get the picture. If the writer who wrote the book is reading this, I would like to inform you that your audience consists of clones. I am not sure how big that audience is...but good for you for cornering that market. As for your book, not being a clone and having a long list of books that I cannot afford to buy already...well, I think I will take a pass on this one. After all, I am not a cloned baseball loving sheep baby-making machine. I hope that you get the picture.

(And if one of my readers have spotted the book that I am talking about and would like to propose a different theory, please feel free to leave it in the comment section. Please remember that I suspect that this writer will be googling themselves to see what type of press they are getting---bear that in mind before naming the author or the book. I am not sure that we want to give buzz to a book that only clones are reading.)

Monday, December 5, 2011

How to survive the 2012 doomsday

Here is a taste of something amusing that I read today---sounds awfully familiar, doesn't it?

Begin quote:

The ancient Mayans predicted the world as we know it will end on December 21st 2012.
What will you do about it? How will you protect your loved ones?


Wearing the Invisible Mystic Mayan Power Cloak™ gives you guaranteed immunity from the 2012 apocalypse.
  • Survive the Apocalypse in style!
  • Raise your Spiritual Vibration!
  • Begin an Exciting New Life!
  • Master the Power of the Ancients!
  • Harness Unlimited Love, Money & Power!
  • Marvel at the Anti-fungal, Anti-bacterial fabric that makes bathing & deodorant use obsolete!
  • Enjoy Instantaneous Enlightenment!

End quote.

Hehe. There is more; but I figure that if you want to read the rest of it (and donate some money to support the second best cause of them all---supporting a straving artist), then you can slip over to the website that are "selling" this marvel of doomsday preparedness.

Warning: The following link leads to a site that shows the naked shocking truth about what one needs to do in order to survive the 2012 end of the world---never say that I did not warn you. Don't let your annoying boss or co-workers see this. Remember that the most important part of a survival plan is secrecy...and we really do not want certain politicans and CEOs to survive (you are aware that annoying people talk to one another?!).

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Ignorance or meddling

Over the last couple of days, I have noticed an upswing in amount of attention paid to the problem with groups being ignorant of the basics. Now, there is always a certain amount of concern surrounding this issue---it is one of those issues that is always present---the waxing and waning of attention paid to it is cyclic.

There are three things related to this I would like to address.

Concerning the Golden Dawn Knowledge Lectures: Someone pointed out that the Golden Dawn Knowledge Lectures seemed to be rather sparse. They are. The commentor felt that they should be more fully explained and just a list to memorize. They are right.

One of the problems with the Knowledge Lectures as we have them is that they are merely the list of what you need to know to pass the most basic test for advancement. What is missing is the oral (or written) lectures that the lodge member should be exposed to. It is things like this that contribute to people having a high Grade and having no idea what they are talking about.

Concerning how much concern we should have when we realize a group is being ran by someone ignorant: One of my friends on Facebook pointed out that many Wiccan and pagan circles are being ran by people ignorant of the basics---a problem that never *wink* occurs in Golden Dawn *chokes a little* Orders. A group being ran by someone ignorant of the basics does not alarm me as much as the unwillingness to admit ignorance.

I know a lot of people do not trust me because I use the following sentences: "This is my answer based on my current knowledge and understanding" and "I reserve the right to change my mind, and the answer I am giving, based on further thought and experience." The people who associate distrust with these sentences are looking for the ONE and ONLY CORRECT ANSWER---something that I have serious doubts actually exist.

I realize that our myths state that only Masters should be in charge and apprentices should be just students, but the truth is that Masters are still just students with added responsibilities.

Concerning the rewriting of Golden Dawn rituals: Yes, I am guilty of rewriting sections of the Golden Dawn rituals. I consider all the versions that we have to be just "working drafts." It is one of reasons that I shrug my shoulders whenever someone publishes a version of the rituals--I figure that any set of rituals that have been used for more than a decade is probably in need of a tune-up.

For instance, I added an unauthorized "third part" to the Zelator ritual to address the fact that the a section of the Golden Dawn community was now starting the study of geomancy in Zelator. And what I learned was that this third section had more oomph and flow than the official parts of the ritual did. This in turn is going to lead to a reworking of the rest of the Zelator ritual.

This will lead people to pointing out that I am meddling in things that I do not fully understand---that only an Adept Extemptus...or a Magister Templi...or an Ipsissimus has the knowledge and authority to change the scripts of the rituals. My answer to this is that I don't care that I am not of the proper Grade according to your understanding of the system...and that I am not even sure that we are working in the same system to begin with. I belong to a system that changes with the time and the experience of those involved in it---what was true a hundred years ago, two hundred years ago, etc. is not exactly suitable for the modern student who is living in a different time and place than our ancestors did. If you think that the dawn of consciousness was the Golden Age, you need to move back into the caves with the bears.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Adopt a Secret Chief shocking dog and cat edition

This post is for JC...hehe.

The other day, I came across a shocking revelation. And I forgot to bookmark where I found it. Sorry. But I do remember its main point.

It was an article talking about the number of homeless pets, and the fact that people really need to fix their pets. According to the article, in order to make sure that every dog and cat in the United States had a home, each individual (every man, woman and child) would have to own 3 cats and 1.5 dogs.

That means that my wife and I should own 6 cats and 3 dogs. My godfamily (two adults and a kid) needs to own 9 cats and 4.5 dogs. Obviously, this ignores the limits that the local law imposes.

And the point of the article was that when it comes time for a new pet, go to a shelter and adopt a homeless animal...and make sure that you get them fixed, so that they don't have any more babies.

The Secret Chiefs will bless you if you adopt them. And they will be much happier and healthy if you get them fixed.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Adopt a Secret Chief human edition

JC made a comment about expecting this sets of posts (Adopt a Secret Chief) to be about adopting cats; and I so understand why they would expect that--heck it felt wrong to write what I did without mentioning cats. Nevertheless, there are times when you have to talk about the Secret Chiefs in their human form.
And this post is one of those times.

One of the recent things that has boiled out of the stew of the Golden Dawn fora and blogosphere lately is the idea that there are only two ways to think about the Secret Chiefs and their connection with Isis-Urania #3.

One way is that you believe that the Secret Chiefs are real, and that Mathers and Westcott had contact with them, and that the system is built from older material and the only way to gain a deeper understanding of the material is to gain access to the hidden Order that served as their Secret Chiefs. This school of thought insists (more or less) that any modern material and ideas about Golden Dawn are automatically wrong.

The other way of looking at the concept of the Secret Chiefs is that the Secret Chiefs were merely a lie told by Mathers and Westcott to disguise the fact that their Order was a completely brand new thing in a time period where the only "real" Orders were thought to be secretly hundred, if not thousands, of years old. Because no Secret Chiefs were involved in the creation of Golden Dawn, the school of thought reasons that there is no reason to seek out the Secret Chiefs and the odds are that anyone claiming to make contact with the Secret Chiefs is lying and running a scam.

Please note that this black and white description is actually a simplification; one needs a scorecard to figure out what some people actually believe. Which brings me to the point of this blog post.

There is a third school of thought concerning the Secret Chiefs. And that school of thought is that it does not matter either way whether the Secret Chiefs existed, was in contact with Mathers and Westcott or not, still exist or not...none of this matters.

Now there are several ways to end up in this particular school of thought, most of them accidential. You end up being driven into this school of thought---it is not like you wake up one morning and say, "I want to be a heretic and hated by both of the major Golden Dawn camps"---no you find yourself painted into a corner and discover that you agree with a litttle bit said by this side and little bit said by the other side, and that either side wants you to belong to their side.

In my case, there are three major reasons why I find myself in this outcast school of thought.

One, I have been asked to leave by every strict observance Order that I have ever been a member of. I have a habit of talking back to people; I tend to question the leadership of groups. Opps. With my track record, I am guaranteed to be banned by any Order that claims contact with the Secret Chiefs long before gaining access to anything that would make the additional trouble involved worthwhile. Therefore, it does not matter if an Order has contact with the Secret Chiefs or not, it is not like I am going to be a member long enourgh to benefit from such contact. I am the last person in the world that will ever have a (human) Secret Chief show up on my doorstep.

Two, I am in a situation where I do not have the resources to spare. Being a poor undergraduate (and seeing the light at the end of the tunnel is me actually applying for the grad program), I do not have the money, energy, or time to devote to any particular Order beyond my local lodge. For instance, an Order that emphasizes alchemy (to any significant extent) is not a good option for me at this time. I do not have the money to buy a decent alchemy lab setup, nor the room to use it, nor the time and energy necessary to pursue the work. Other subjects being emphasized also have the same problem, including any system where I would have to travel for instruction or initiation. This is one of those conditions that end up with one not caring if the Secret Chiefs are real or not; and furthermore, not caring if someone actually has contact with them.

Three, this is the worst of the lot and the one that automatically gets me loads of hate from both sides, I am working with very specialized sections of the tradition--unless the Secret Chiefs focus on these areas, they can't help me in the first place. For instance, one of the things I have read is that the Secret Chiefs did not approve of Mathers going hogwild with certain aspects of the system, and are busy rebuilding the system to what it was supposed to look like---these disapproved areas are exactly the areas that I am most interested in and the areas where no help will be forthcoming anyways. Given the fact that I do not have an interest in pre-1888 magic and initiation, it does not matter if I believe in the existence of the Secret Chiefs or not, they can't help me advance in my areas of interest. The areas I am interested in, the Secret Chiefs do not provide support for---then again, most of the other camp do not provide support for these areas either, hence the hate from both sides of the system.

(For the record, I believe that the instant that the Secret Chiefs cut support to an Order that the Secret Chiefs no longer have any rights in that Order and that Order never has to submit to the Secret Chiefs ever again. This is especially true when the system no longer confirms to their original vision. It is opinions like this that gets me banned from groups.)

Therefore for me, and whole bunch of people, it really does not matter if the Secret Chiefs exist or not, and it does not matter if Westcott and Mathers were lying or telling the truth, for we are automatically banned from benefiting from their existence or lack thereof. If you are denied membership or are unable to benefit from the contact, then it DOES NOT MATTER if the Secret Chiefs exist or not.

Of course, this is why I think it is such a neat idea to Adopt a Secret Chief. It is like playing fantasy football or Dungeons and Dragons, it is neat to consider what weirdness would result if a different set of Secret Chiefs had been involved. It does not matter if the Secret Chiefs exist or not, Mathers or Westcott was telling the truth or not, or if anyone is currently in communication with them or not. It is not like it matters to some of us either way. We have NO STAKE in the game---we are allowed to think about the "what ifs." Of course, this annoys both parties---it is nice that they can agree on something, even if it is only to agree that some people shouldn't be in the system for being opinionated and loud-mouthed.

(Please note that this post is not completely true: I know people on both sides who think that I might actually make a decent member of the Golden Dawn tradition...someday, that is.)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Call for Secret Chief Adoption Day

Sometimes, Pat Zalewski cracks me up. Earlier today, or yesterday (depending upon how quickly I type), Pat Zalewski said:

"Heck we can have a [Secret Chief] adoption day- pick one old order at random and our troubles will be gone!"

And I think that this is a really good idea---for the blogosphere---I suggest that all the bloggers who read this post to please consider researching and posting about some obscure and possibly extinct esoteric Order.

Please note, Pat did not say when this magical event should occur---feel free to vote in the comment section---but I am thinking that it should be December 24.

(In case, you are wondering some people say that the Mayan calendar ends on December 24, 2011 and not December 21, 2012...personally, I think we should plan on doing something to celebrate the end of the world that is not going to happen this year and maybe not ever. Bwahaha!)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Pentagram pottery is special order only

Pentagram Corked Jars.

Closeup of green pentagram.

Closeup of reddish pentagram.
One of the things that regular readers of this blog might be interested in knowing is the fact that my wife will not be putting up any pentagram decorated pottery and jewelry on her Etsy site. Pentagram decorated pieces are special order only. In order to buy a pentagram decorated piece of jewelry or pottery, one needs to contact my wife through her Etsy store. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Casualty of flamewar fears

Last night, I was cruising the internet while trying not to cough up a lung (I have been sick all week), and I ran across a great blog idea. I started to write it, and then I stopped.


Simply, because I could see how it was going to be taken out of context and used as evidence that I was flaming an aspect of Golden Dawn mythology. Which was not my purpose---I was merely using my Golden Dawn background (which I presume my readers share) to explain something else.

So I deleted a perfectly good post because it was likely to get someone's knickers in a tangle.

One of my long-standing fears about the "we can't afford another flame war" school of policing is that it is going to shut good people up completely. That we are going to end up with just one party talking about Golden Dawn, and the rest of us becoming New Agers simply because we can't talk about anything interesting in Golden Dawn.

It is something that I noticed that happened in the Wiccan community. Ironically, the only people who actually shut up are the people who should not have been censored in the first place---the trolls and the flamers are still as loud as ever.

You can't do book reviews because it shows that you have a bias, therefore you are flaming someone. You can't write about your opinions about Golden Dawn techniques because you are wrong and flaming everyone who has a different understanding of how the system works. You can't advertise your own work because only flamers are interested in making money.

The only option you have if you do not want to be accused of being a flamer and a troll is to simply shut up. Completely shut up. And give up the field to those who have appointed themselves as the internet police.

Yet despite the claims of the internet police, I am not sure that it is helping the community at all.

And heavens knows that it annoys the hell out of me. I should be focused on writing the very best blog posts that I can. Not deleting good posts because they are going to upset someone. More of my mental energy is spent trying to figure out how to not upset people than it is to advance interest in the system I am working. I am getting sick and tired of having to be politically correct.

And I may not be paying much attention to the internet police much longer. Of course, that statement will be read as a declaration of flame war---the question is what side is going to yell at me first.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

No matter how hard you try, you'll never top this.
This Thanksgiving, let's us bow our heads in thanks for the greatest invention by the druids of old: the bacon wrapped twinkle stonehedge.

And if you are serious about trying something like this, check out the video I posted over on Loki's Wisdom on how to actually make bacon-stuffed deep fried twinkles. Your heart will not thank you.

And if you haven't already, check out the Thanksgiving themed article I did for the November 2011 Hearthstone Community Church's newsletter, included in Four Cornerstones (available for free on Smashwords).

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

FBI arrests 7 in Amish Mullet Conspiracy

Earlier today, the FBI has arrested 7 people including the group's leader, Sam Mullet, for attacking and cutting the hair and beards of Amish believers. For the Amish, women do not cut their hair, and men do not trim their beards after marriage. Hair and beards are simply part of the Amish identity.

And it makes some of the silliness I have seen in the occult community look sane---well, sanier. Well, ok, there are loonies everywhere.

Does the following sound familar?

"Mullet told The Associated Press in October that he didn’t order the hair-cutting, but didn’t stop his sons and others from carrying it out. He said the goal was to send a message to other Amish that they should be ashamed of themselves for the way they were treating Mullet and his community."

There are some conflicting accounts that idicate otherwise.

Besides, the hair cutting, there was beatings, isolating of members who had fallen astray, and sexual relations with married women in order to cleanse them.

And at this point, I have to ask, given the stories I have heard about various groups, are we not better than the Amish radicals? Or could we at least not try to be better?

Yeah, yeah, I know. No occult group has ever done anything wrong ever. And this includes bad experiences and cult-like behavior I have seen first-hand---it was all in my imagination. Let the accusations of flaming begin.

Remember, my friends, if you are in an occult group and do not like the way that the leaders treat people---get the hell out of there; for if you do not, you will become just like them.

You can read more about the Amish Mullet Haircut experience at the website of the Chicago Sun Times.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Jewelry inspected and blessed by the Secret Chiefs

This dragonfly necklace has been inspected by Secret Chief Mortimor.
Over this past weekend, I was taking photos some of my wife's jewelry, including several new pieces. One of the new pieces was this dragonfly necklace which Mortimor personally inspected. I presume that he approved of it. He might have even blessed it---I am not completely sure. Either it was a blessing, or he wanted me to play more attention to him.

Lucky kitty foot not included.

Step one in the secret blessing ritual.

Step two in the secret blessing ritual.
Ok, looking at the photos, it is probably not a Secret Chief blessing of the jewelry; it seems to be merely that the Secret Chief in question wanted more petting and less photography. And he is such a cute kitty, who am I to refuse?
(All implications that the Secret Chiefs approve of my wife's jewelry are meant to be taken seriously. Some Secret Chiefs promote esoteric Orders; mine promote my wife's jewelry business, so that she will buy them freeze dried salmon kitty treats. Obey the Secret Chiefs---go buy some of my wife's jewelry right now. And remember that the piece he blessed is available for sale right now.)

If you want the esoteric information that the Secret Chief is guarding, you must give him a bribe.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Tomas Stacewicz is not a landmine

One thing that I want to make clear is that Tomas Stacewicz was not the person that set me off yesterday. It may have seemed that way given the timing of posts and such not, but Tomas was innocent.

What happened was that I recieved a private message from someone, who decided to chew me out about my last blog post and claimed that I was bad-mouthing the HOGD/A&O and their Third Order with my way of reading the Fama.

And I exploded.

Let's be honest, people trying to force me to shut up is one of my personal landmines. Blame it on my childhood, my sunny disposition, the fact that I broke my fair share of lances in the Denver Witch Wars of the eighties, or whatever you like. Griffin blamed it on me getting out on the wrong side of bed---which is as good of explanation as any about why an over-zealous defender of the HOGD/A&O set me off yesterday.

But Tomas was not responsible for the explosion.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

For the lack of a better translation

It has been an interesting day. Besides recieving one of the nasty and demanding private messages ever, I did learn something today. The English translation of the Fama Fraternitatis that all the English and American Orders use is flawed compared to the German version (or so I have been informed).

(Actually, I do trust the opinion on the translation error--after all, I have seen some blunders when Hebrew is translated into English---why should German to English be any different?)

Personally, I was unable to find a German version of the Fama that was not set in the alphabet form that I struggle with, not alone a copy that might be accessible with the help of a translation program and a German to English dictionary by one's side. And it does amuse me that the one Order that I would have been expecting to use a different translation only has the same flawed English translation up on their website.

(One can only hope that one of their members does a full translation of it someday and allows those of us with limited language skills to see it. Oh who am I kidding---non-members will never be allowed to see it.)

So given that us the English Orders have been using a flawed translation, does this mean that our Rosicrucian philosophy is wrong? Of course, it does---or so I have been told. I am just not convinced that it as wrong as the person would like me to think it is. Then again, I am not convinced that we are even in the same tradition anymore---at a certain point, enourgh errors and differences of opinion create whole new systems.

(Of course, my real crime of the day was that I forgot to undermine my own authority by including fifteen million mentions of the fact that I am a wrongfully trained scholar---something that I am so sick and tired of doing in the name of peace.)

Now, I am willing to accept that the translation that we have been using loses something in the translation. But I am not sure that I am willing to bow down and toss out the version that the English and American schools have been using for a three and a half centuries. Especially in the light that it is only English version that I was able to find after two hours of internet searching.

The flawed English translation is the only version I have been exposed to in the various groups that I have belonged to over the years. It is the same version that I discuss with students when the subject comes up. And heavens knows that I have a hard enourgh time trying to maintain the little French and Hebrew that I know in the midst of my wife's plot to secretly teach me Spanish, that the very thought of trying to learn more German than the little bit I picked up studying the World Wars turns my stomach.

(Yes, I choose languages that utterly useless when it comes to the study of the Rosicrucian anyone really surprised by that?! If only I would have known in high school that I needed to make a different set of choices.)

So until I get my hands on a dual language scholar's edition, I have two choices: Keep using the flawed translation and NEVER discuss Rosicrucian philosophy ever again in public (especially if I want to keep a certain letter writer happy) or completely toss them out and make up something to replace them with. It is not a good set of choices at all, is it?

I was not talking about the Third Order

I am annoyed---very annoyed.

It has came to my attention that my previous blog post (Get paid to do the Great Work) has been read as a criticism of Griffin and company's Third Order. It was not talking about them. I did not mean for it to be read in that manner.

I was merely trying to come to a conclusion about whether or not, anything that we can call the Great Work, can be done as a form of paid employment.

And I thought it was important to include the fact that the Fama stated (or at least, the English version that I am familiar with) that physical immortality was not allowed to the members of the RC. Hence anyone who is promising to provide you with physical immortality shouldn't get paid to do that type of work if they are a member of the Fraternity; this has no bearing on spiritual immortality.

(I am sorry that I am restricted to English, bad English, bad French and bad Hebrew--and that I forget that you can not be a real Rosicrucian while being a poorly educated American. I did mention that I was restricted to an English translation.)

This fact about the fact that original Brotherhood not being able to cheat physical death really has no bearing on my personal beliefs about an afterlife, or whether or not a person can gain conscious, controllable existence after the death of their physical body. Nor does it represent a criticism of the HOGD/A&O and their Third Order.

I am sorry that I forgot that any reading of the RC documents has to be ran by Griffin's Third Order because they are the only ones with the correct reading. And yes, I am getting annoyed with the fact that one cannot write about the Golden Dawn and the Rosicrucians and come to a conclusion different from the HOGD/A&O official party line without being accused of criticising Griffin's group. In this case, I did not realize that my conclusion would go against their official version. (They really need to issue a complete manual on what one is allowed to say and not say.) And I especially annoyed because I did not think that my conclusion about employment had any bearing on what the HOGD/A&O is promising about spiritual immortality.

I was talking about the types of gainful employment open to a member of the RC Brotherhood. That is what I was concerned with, that is what I cared about, and that what I wanted the discussion to be about. Not every discussion has to end up reaffirming that Griffin's Third Order is the only correct method to gain spiritual immortality. Some of us, such as myself, are concerned with other Rosicrucian matters, such as one's proper place in the physical world, which includes the issue of employment.

Maybe I should have defaulted to using Crowley or the New Age materials instead. Oh wait, that material is only used by villians. Is it wrong to once again ask Griffin's Third Order to openly declare me an outlaw, so that I can focus on the work that concerns me?

Did I mention that I am annoyed? Very annoyed?