THERE have been moments lately which I have had to scratch my head and wonder what is going on with the Golden Dawn.
If you were a collector of paper, signatures and the like, you can fill reams of internet bandwidth with endless speculation about what the Golden Dawn was like. Moreover, these revisionists can forge that history so whatever fantasy they have about themselves is re-enforced.
You can link the Golden Dawn tradition with anything you like if you have enough time and pieces of paper. You can pretend that the right people were Gods and the people who don't fit your theory were secret garden gnome worshippers.
One of the weak points for those who want to make themselves important in the Golden Dawn story is the existence of Whare Ra. This Golden Dawn temple shut its doors in the late 1970s having succeeded for some 60 years. The problem with Whare Ra is some of its members are still alive and when a lot more of them were still living. Theytrained people. It is these people who have provided most of the practical and historical work to those working the Golden Dawn tradition.
While some of the minor things in Whare Ra were slightly different from 60 years earlier, we know what they did and wherethey did it. To an esoteric archaeologist, it is like stumbling across a society that had been cut off from the rest of the world and still worshiped Anubis and can tell you exactly what mix of incenses you use on which day.
This is bad news for many of the theories of the paper collectors.
Lately, someone has come up with a bizarre theory that the Third Order of Whare Ra was Steiner's Rosicrucians. This is based on the fact that Felkin was quite interested in Steiner and used a few of his techniques.
Again nice theory, and probably you can find a few pieces of paper that might back it up. However, tell that to the people who actually were in Whare Ra, and they would laugh at you. The people who met the Whare Ra types were never told to read Steiner nor have any of his ideas ended up in many of the Whare Ra papers. Alice Bailey and theosophy were stronger forces at various times in Whare Ra's history.
Neither Tony Fuller, Pat Zalewski, nor any of the others who have trained under Whare Ra people have seen a Steiner influence and although Percy Wilkinson had an extensive library, there is hardly any Steiner there. Steiner might have been an influence on Felkin and Meakin at various stages of their lives but that fell by the wayside when he came to Hawkes Bay. The only think that is left are a few exercises called the Processes, which were sporadically used.
A mysterious un-named person popped up and said that they had lived in Havelock North, and the place had a strong Steiner influence. This meant that Whare Ra must have also been influenced by the Steiner ideas. However, that argument is a bit like saying that because the Magical Order of the Aurora Aurea is based in Rome,therefore we must have the Vatican as our Third Order. Other Magic Orders in Havelock North are not influenced by “the Steinies” as they are dubbed in Havelock, neither was Whare Ra. One of the reason for this is that the Steinies started to appear in Havelock in the 1930s and the school did not establish itself until the 1970s.
However, the thing is that you end up having to argue with people who are quite determined that their theories are right. I had one person lecturing me the other day about what was taught in a certain Chivalric Order of which I was a member and telling me I must have got my magical knowledge from that rather than the GD. In another case, someone gave a detailed description of what Percy Wilkinson must have known or be like.
I have grown tired of it really. It is like someone coming to you to try and prove your mother never existed and showing you a theory which appears logical. Chic Cicero has the same problem with people's interpretations of history where he was actually there, but he is a little more patent than me.
Now these same types will claim I am doing the same thing with my interpretation of Mathers in my book Mather's Last Word. I might be doing the same thing to Mathers that I am accusing others of. That would appear logical. I don't think Mathers was a magical god, and I 'll be happy to show you papers that back up my theory.
But, what is being actually being disputed in Whare Ra is a history which I am a part of. It is a history I saw. The bits of the history I didn't see, I have spoken to those who were there.
I am not going to argue about what I saw with people who were not and desperately want to be recognised for their point of view. Neither am I going to argue with habitual drug users who think they can turn lead into Gold, have a fantasy about Arabs paying for Hebrew wands, or with single men who are so desperate for a shag they make it a mystery in the sad hope that one day they will get laid.
Sure, you can attack the theories in my books, (although one so called scholarly critique was packed full of so much magical ignorance, and logical holes, I could not even begin to reply to it). However, when it is about something I saw, or experienced, I have decided that you can stick your theories up your arse, and I will ignore you.
I will add to that what a real Whare Ra adept once told me “Modern Golden Dawn groups do not understand what the Third Order is, and what its currency is”... such crap pseudo-historical arguments just prove her point.