In my post entitled Labels, Cults, and Politics I focused on the idea that by not defining terms, people (ab)use the terms to influence others. They use a term to get your supportÂ because you believe the term means one thing even though they use the term to mean something different. An example of this phenomenon, used in politics, might be a politician seeking your vote by saying, “I’m going to vote to improve our education system.” To some people that might mean, “I’m going to increase funding to schools.” To others it might mean, “I’m going to cut funding to teachers.” To others it might mean something else. What does it mean to the politician? Unless that person defines what is meant, nobody knows. But it sounds good and gets votes.
In my post I asked, “Are there any Golden Dawn Groups that are cults?” I answered by writing:
There are lots of groups that claim to be the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. I know of one that totally inverts the symbolism of the Golden Dawn. I know of another that adopts popular â€śfluffy bunny metaphysicalâ€ť concepts and reinterprets them as magickal. I know of one where the leader used supposed spiritual concepts to justify his sexual abuse of a minor. I know of one where the group has become a fan club for the leader rather than following the Golden Dawn traditions.
By the specific definition of a cult as being a â€śsect,â€ť I would say each of these groups is a cult. However, since most people use the term â€ścultâ€ť as meaning a group of people doing negative things and who may be suffering from some form of â€śmind control,â€ť I wonâ€™t use the term to describe any of these groups.
The purpose was to decry the use of the word “cult” without defining specifically what is meant by that term. I concluded by writing, “Rather than using labels that can have different meanings to different people, why donâ€™t we just state exactly what we mean?” This was the context of my post.
Unfortunately (and I’m not going to link to it), another poster has taken two sentences out of this context to attack another person. This poster, rather than use his name, blogs using the name, “Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.” To my mind this shows an amazing amount of hubris and a total lack of the Rosicrucian ideals (as originally given in the Fama Fraternitatis) he claims to espouse.
I would like to make very clear that I did not give this person authorization to quote me.
I did not give this person authorization to misrepresent the context of my post as he did.
Too often, whether it’s reading an author we like or while listening to one-sided interpretations that pass for “news” today, we don’t go back to their original sources. They assume we won’t do that. They know that in today’s world we rarely have time to check into their misunderstandings or misrepresentations or outright lies. I would say that today, perhaps more than ever, it’s important to check sources and the context of those sources.
I am proud to be friends with Chic and Sandra Tabatha Cicero. They contend they are “Senior Adepts of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn” and, having seen their bona fides, I believe that is accurate. Their books are amazing, in-depth, and important advances to the corpus of Golden Dawn work. I have written for books they edited, and they were kind enough to contribute a foreword to the new edition of Modern Magick.
I do NOT support attacks on different Golden Dawn groups. I DO support those who are more interested in doing the work of learning and practicing magick rather than using blogs to attack others. That is why I am not linking to this person’s blog. I do NOT support those who support their own egos byÂ quoting others out of context.