Friday, February 17, 2012

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain

As many of my regular readers know, I am working on getting my Bachelors in History (as well as a Bachelors in Literature). This semester, I am doing my Senior Seminar (capstone) for history. Yes, I am one of those evil people who is trained as a historian (and have enourgh experience with journalism and oral story telling to be leery of the oral tradition), and therefore have no place studying the history of Golden Dawn and the other esoteric Orders. It is a good thing that I am more interested in studying other branches of history, isn't it?

For my Senior Seminar paper, I am working with the papers of Denver Mayor William McNichols that are part of the Denver Public Library's Western History collection. I am focused on Civil Defense. Therefore I am reading a lot of government memos and letters.

One of the things that I have learned going though the McNichols papers is that a lot of letters supposely written by the Denver Mayor were not created by him; they merely bear his signature. Last night, I was reading a reply to a letter sent from one of the many cities who were interested in getting a copy of the "Denver Plan." (Denver's Civil Defense over time became more focued on dealing with all types of emergencies, not just nuclear strikes---riots, extreme weather, airplane crashes, etc.) And in the course of the request, the person requesting the information (to be used as a "model example" of an emergency plan) told the Mayor how proud the city and county of Denver should be to have Colonel Allen as Director of the local Civil Defense. The person preparing the Mayor's reply (writing as if he was Mayor McNichols) said that he would be sure to pass the compliment onto Colonel Allen.

The punchline is that the person preparing the draft copy was Colonel Allen himself.

And what does this have to do with Golden Dawn? Absolutely nothing...unless you are like me and wonder how often a reply from a Secret Chief is actually written by someone else. As I said, being actually trained as a historian makes me unsuitable to study the history of Golden Dawn and other esoteric Orders.


Peregrin said...

Nice post, Morgan. Your studies sound very interesting actually :)

These sort of things do go on in occult and other circles. Always have. The net just makes it a lot easier. For example, not too long ago Scott Adams was discovered using other identities to defend his Dilbert cartoon, and you've already voiced doubts re some reviews of magical books.

I too have had the heretical thoughts you voice. But hey, even it were so it really is traditional after all. Mathers and Westcott had inner and outer mottos and signatures etc at the beginning. Maybe when you reach a certain level you become a Secret Chief AND remain a member of the inner order. So, really it would be fine to write things as both of you :)

The other day on a forum I was taken to task for hiding behind a pseudonym (when actually I used, as I always do, my legal name - I had just had a legal name change in the years since the event I described). No one however, seems to mind the Secret Chiefs only giving us their Mottos. Interesting that :) thanks

Unknown said...

No one seems to care about the Secret Chiefs using mottos that were used by other secret chiefs years ago either. But this is a problem within the GD generally. I wonder how many mottos are just recycled from old golden dawn membership lists?
We do a lot with the magical used of mottos, I think the lack of originality about them is a sign that they are not taking the tradition seriously.

Peregrin said...

@Nick... you know of course someone is gonna say the recycled names of the secret chiefs is cos they are a title, not just a motto :)

Agree fully, re the Mottos :)