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The Open Source Order of the Golden Dawn

To: alt.magick,alt.magick.order,alt.magick.tyagi,alt.thelema,alt.pagan.magick
From: 333 
Subject: Re: The Open Source Order of the Golden Dawn (LONG response to 333)
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 2003 23:28:41 GMT

500301 VII om

Re O'Stat  is all fangs (:>) with Fr AoC (the Maxx!):
>>> ...You could put Mickey Mouse on the Throne of the East....
>>> ...You could [put] Spongebob Squarepants there 


>The different "streams" of which I've seen do keep the same core. The 
>variations I've seen consist of rewording of certain concepts to make 
>them, in the variation creators' minds, more understandable or perhaps 
>to include alliegience to the specific leaders of the group. However, 
>the core concepts stay the same....

and is it always pretty easy to delineate which are the "core concepts"
and which are the "variable tweak knobs"?

>I remember seeing a tarot deck in which all of the characters were taken 
>from cartoons. It was a cute idea. It used the outer appearance of the 
>tarot to feature Bugs and Daffy. Would large numbers of people consider 
>it for serious spiritual or divinatory work? I seriously doubt it. 

so do I, because of how these characters have been regarded over time.
is it large numbers of people that determines magical effectiveness?

>So although it had the outer form of the tarot, it wouldn't be used 
>for most tarot purposes (perhaps for a game, maybe?).

Loony Tarocci.

>So should it be called a tarot deck? 

in an occult sense, if it conforms to the standards of the usual
occult tarot (or game if you want) then yes.

>Simply because there are similarities in the number of images? 

yeah, like if it had Bugs as The Fool 0 and proceeded through
a series of 22 images for Trumps followed by the rest of the
78 card deck based, say, on Pamela Colman-Smith's Sola-Busca
redeux, sure.

> Are would it be more appropriate to call it a work of 
> "serial art"? Similarly, I don't know of anyone who uses 
> the Dali deck for work. I'm sure there are some, however...

I know what you mean. I would have a difficult time of using
Dali's deck on account of my preferences, even though I like
it (Surrealism generally but Dali in particular) enough to 
have obtained a book of his images.

>So merely because somebody, even a genius like Dali does a piece of 
>serial art in the form of a tarot deck does not mean that it is usable 
>for the most common uses of a tarot deck.


>Likewise, if you strip the functions of the officers from the GD 
>initiation rituals, 

disrupting its form, structure.

>it is no longer a GD initiation ritual, 
> even if you call it "open source."

a more extensive claim. I didn't agree that because it would be
difficult to use the Dali it was not a tarot deck. having stripped
off these functions, that might mean that it is unusable for the 
most common uses of initiation rituals. perhaps it will suffice
for a small group to achieve them, however.

>>> But take Osiris off the Throne and it's not the G.D.
>> they're a bunch of Osiris-clingers, eh? was their objective not
>> beyond description, their method variable depending upon the
>> group and the manner of rite to which they chose to become
>> accustomed? or is what makes the Golden Dawn what it is so 
>> hard-wired and formalistic?

>No, there objective was absolutely NOT beyond description. 

why does the Cypher Manuscript not describe the foundation from
which a number of Golden Dawns might arise?

>They used it quite often. It was to help a person become 
>"more than human."

there might be several variations on achieving these aims.

>Their method was not variable. You were required to learn 
>and do certain things at each stage of development.

across the spectrum of Golden Dawn groups has this curriculum
remained the same in content?

>Frankly, I think you're coming to the same conclusion I have: a system 
>which is variable to meet the needs/talents/skills/abilities of an 
>individual is probably best suited to any person. 

it is my working hypothesis, especially when speaking with
ceremonial magicians or mystics who think that they have
the One True Formula.

>Frankly, from what 
>I've read, Crowley's original design for the AA seems to fit that bill 
>more accurately than the G.D.

'cept he codifies it into a dogma too, extending beyond what was
previously said about the Great White Brotherhood (a kind of
assault upon the Secret Fraternity, attempting to usurp its
authority by virtue of identification in a way quite comparable
to that for which you've criticized the OSGD). this is of course 
not anything new, and seems to have been inspired by novels like
Zanoni, in which fictional characters may dwell within the 
fog of the supernatural adept society. the commonality appears 
to be the rejection of claims to membership by virtue of 
knowing only a single initiator (something that is often
overlooked by those who advertize their AA lineages/groups).

>So a system which is focused on the individual, rather than on the 
>traditions and methods of any "order," seems superior to me than a 
>preset, cookie-cutter, one-size-supposedly-fits-all group.

the latter should be considered quasi-masonic, I'd say, whereas
the former is something to be found more often in mystical camps.

>Such a group may have some similar teachings and even ritual 
>similarities to a "hard-wired and formalistic" group. But their very 
>basis shows that they are different....

agreed. when one becomes the other is something of a controversy.

>And when you strip the core from the GD....

the issue at that point becomes what is the core. you don't appear
to be acknowledging this difference of opinion, instead casting
aspersions about the motivations involved after the core has been

>Sometimes it is very hard to be willing to observe ones own 

agreed. I'll avoid the personal issues for the nonce in favour
of trying to understand better the methods of those who claim
any kind of association with Goldawnians and mystics of occult
stripe. your repeated contention that the OSGD is using the
name of the GD for its own purposes is intriguing but does not
inspire me to pursue it further than identifying the relevant
issues underlying the contention (where this 'core' is; when
it is stripped away; what is central, and what is changeable
in the GD method, etc.).

thanks again for your perspective on the matter.


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