"Orange Room." Original digital painting. February 2010.
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Monday, February 22, 2010
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
My contribution to this discussion:
Yes, the Golden Dawn was historically exclusive and elitist. The original group was so exclusive and elitist that their teachings were almost lost when the group broke apart. Who would have carried this spiritual knowledge to the next generation if Crowley and Regardie had not gone ahead and just published the Golden Dawn material for everyone to read? Had it not been for that, chances are that few people reading or posting on this website would ever have come into contact with this material.
Remember, even Dion Fortune was rejected from one of the post-G.D. groups for not having the right symbols in her aura. ("A perfectly unanswerable charge.") And Fortune had her own issues with mental illness. Would you have kept Dion Fortune out of your group too?
A lot has changed in the last century or so, and going crazy just ain't what it used to be. In fact, it's much more common, and it is foolish to pretend to understand all of the reasons for this societal shift. The very drugs demonized in these posts are the ones most frequently prescribed by doctors today.
Philip K. Dick said that sometimes going insane is the only sane response to an insane society. He was a visionary, too, but I doubt he would have been able to live up to these standards, either. Another potential G.D. reject!
Though Crowley was barely out of school when he joined the Golden Dawn, he immediately observed that "the members of the Order were as vulgar and commonplace as any other set of average people." Elitism be damned. We all start out as lead.
Monday, February 1, 2010
The rituals described also share another trait: they all seem to go horrendously wrong. Grant calls this a "tangential tantrum," but I can think a stronger words to describe one's students dying or going insane. Alleged instances include a trapeze artist falling off a giant Tree of Life framework into an open well, aquarium monsters emerge to have sex with a Priestess, and an Indian temple baboon dissapears into a column of purple smoke never to be seen again. To be sure, some people derived benefits from these rites: one woman supposedly became a great dancer after she sucked off a giant Mayan squid-bat in an abandoned chapel in Wales (pp. 243-6)!
(from a review of the work of Kenneth Grant)