Comments on this site are welcome but generally I will delete those made anonymously or any posts if they are seen to attack anyone.

Monday 26 March 2012

David Griffin lied to his own members to start a flame war

David Griffin has been caught doctoring quotes in my book King over theWater in a desperate bid to rally his own Order into a flame war.
Earlier this week Griffin ordered his troops to hit with one star reviews because of a phrase in my book which he claimed said that I was accusing his order of being a personality cult.
This is the quote with which he rallied his troops:

"By the end of the 20th Century this availability of [Golden Dawn] information enabled various reenactment groups to be established. Some of these groups are sound... Unfortunately, other groups border on religious or political cults, typically centered on a single leader.... Typically such groups claim a link to that section of the Golden Dawn Order known as the Alpha et Omega or AO."

This quote apparently caused his members to do his bidding and post nasty messages about a book that they had not read. When I read his quote I thought he had just mis-understood what I said, because at no point had I ever considered his AO re-enactment group a personality cult.
At the request of another esoteric author, who thought I should have made that clearer, I re-examined what I wrote and discovered that DAVID GRIFFIN had FORGED THE QUOTE BY ASSEMBLING IT FROM HARMLESS QUOTES which were on the same page.
This is something which is frowned upon in journalistic circles because is a form of forgery of reality and can lead you into a lot of legal hotwater. Here is a copy of the page with the parts of the sentences that Griffin assembled to lie to his own order. The fact that the ... has been removed for the crucial last sentence to attempt to make it appear like I was talking about his order.

One has to question what sort of leader would forge a document to incite his order to attack another group like this? I feel sorry for the victims of this scam,  because they have been duped into believing that they have been attacked by the publication of this book, when they clearly have not. So I assume that they were ignorant of what their leader was telling them.
Now everyone in the AO has been informed. If I were a member of the Griffin's A+O I would be seriously wondering what other lies he might have told me. Valid Secret chiefs, turning lead into gold, lineage to the original Golden Dawn  all these things suddenly would be questionable. If he forges quotes like this what other unthruths has he foisted upon the A+O?
David claims that he is only interested in protecting the members of his Order. If that is the case he should resign to prevent the Order being further damaged by his antics. Until he posted this forgery of the quotes my book there was no flame war with the rest of the Golden Dawn community and now suddenly there is.
All I can assume is that David is either desperate to start a Flame War or there is something else in the book which he does not want members of his order reading.
The members of David's order are now faced with an ethical choice. It is the sort of choice that many individuals face on the esoteric path and defines them as either true spiritual people or sheep. It is the same question that those in Robert Zink's order had to face. Do you continue to follow a man who manipulated and lied to you. Is it possible to follow a leader who takes you into combat with people who would otherwise be your friend?
David has made a lot of the fact that I called those who posted one star reviews against my book “brown shirts.” Sadly that is exactly the type of people who follow such leaders as they bully others. By following such a leader you become forever tarred with your association with him.
Griffin has been telling his members that MOAA is getting ready to overthrow me for daring to start a flame war. However it is my own members that have insisted that I post this evidence of the forgery of my quotes so that others can make an informed decision as to whether they will continue to support David Griffin.  
After this I am not posting anything about more David Griffin and his group. I am not interested in any flame war with anyone, but I will not debate anything with people who are not true of voice.  

Sunday 25 March 2012

Is the Golden Dawn doomed?

I had an email from a person who I respect who works with the Rosicrucian movement in Germany. Very well connected, they seem to have strong links to the original Golden Dawn. They are also about to publish material which they claim will show that the Golden Dawn was a waste of space and will identify the real sources of magic and Rosicrucianism. Interesting stuff but the point was that the person was making a very valid point.
“When the head of a Golden Dawn order, like David Griffin feels that it is perfectly acceptable to order his group to attack a writer online there is something deeply rotten in the egregrore of the system,” he said.
His argument was that David Griffin is not the first, nor will he be the last because something within the Golden Dawn system encourages conflict. He was experienced in magic and did not think that it was anything to do with the fact that the rituals had been published. His theory was that because too many people who should not rise to the top have done so the Golden Dawn is completely tainted.
This mirrors another friend of mine in the UK who said something similar. Her view was that people were not receiving valid training within the Golden Dawn system. Actual understanding of the system was not difficult, but application of techniques was shonky. People were taking techniques that they only intellectually understood and were performing rituals that were going no where. She saw the flame wars within the Golden Dawn as symptomatic of kids playing with matches.
Both these people were opposite sides of the coin. The first was hard esoteric masonry and the other was hard inner magical. Both were writers and neither understood what I was doing with the Golden Dawn.
Too much Golden Dawn can be bad for your health
One of the reasons that the Magical Order of the Aurora Aurea did not call itself Golden Dawn was to distance itself from the Golden Dawn and its flame wars. Calling ourselves Hermetic anything was not an option. The Golden Dawn was not the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn anyway and besides it was felt that we would be different from what had gone before in that we would emphase the magical training systems of the Golden Dawn.
The next thing that we did was to take the rituals and look at them from a magical perspective. Pat Zalewski did some stirling work in this regard and his Magical Rituals and Commentaries has proved vital to the approach we took. However we are not running the Magical Order of the Aurora Aurea based entirely on Pat's book either. What happened was as we researched and took the ritual down one way we found that it could be locked together slightly differently from the way Pat suggested. It was not that Pat was wrong, but because we placed emphases one thing and not another we had to do something else later on. Pats system is beautiful and elegant and fits together... but so does ours but in a slightly different way.
But what was interesting is that if you had the Whare Ra ritual in front of you, you would probably not notice any scriptural changes. What did change was the Inner work we did to expand the Z documents. These required work all the way through the outer order. Idea followed idea and we had to rewrite our version of the Z docs several times before it was sorted out. This ended up with a ritual structure which would satisfy my German friend or English friend they ever saw it being used.
Then there came the other inner material which started to construct the group and the order in its own image. This was the toughest bit for me because of my bad experiences with contacts before. But with the right safeguards in place this opened up a new dimension to the work and the training that we have to do.
In our second order tests and training are mostly magical and the process is fairly intense. By the time people have reached that grade they are expected to contribute. The oath is not loyalty to a person but to the work. A chief is expected to rule by consensus and not according to their own game plan. A contact might come through and say “this needs to happen” but if the chief does not believe it and neither to the group then decisions are not made.
All this has created something I really like and approach to magic which I feel is correct and balanced.
The Golden Dawn has been a cult for some.
So the answer to my friends was, yes the Golden Dawn itself would be rubbish if leaders take Regardie and do the rituals without putting in the proper magical and ritual work. But I think that it has a lot more going for it than other people see when they see the antics of some Golden Dawn leaders. But I can also see it is not for everyone. People who accept what their leadership says, without question, have no place in magic. Neither do leaders who think of making such orders.
Some Golden Dawns have been overtly racist
Certainly there are Golden Dawn groups out there who have members who are anti-Semitic or other non-christian religions, anti-women, anti-gay and yet they are allowed to go up the grades in some groups.
But that does not apply to a well run Golden Dawn group which works the system properly. Such a group can develop material and truly transform its members. Its leaders have to develop too because the material and the rituals cannot help but transform them.
This is why I am still involved with the Golden Dawn. Although it is also possible that our Egregore has few meeting points with most modern groups. We have a different name, a different philosophy and work pretty hard at the work. Some while I get that then then I will remain hard at work.