Having spent most of my GD years as a solitary practitioner living in a state with no Temples, no peers and no one to discuss the GD, I turned to the Internet (after its inception of course). I have spent much of the past 16 years observing from a distance the fighting and backstabbing that’s gone on in most of the online discussion fora, and found myself asking the question again and again, “if this is what GDers do, do I really want to be a part of it?”
The answer always comes around to “yes, yes I do.”
I love the GD system. I am willing to take the good and the bad with it, just like any other worthwhile endeavor. What I’ve gotten from the system far outweighs the dregs who often populate the forums.
Still, when I see some persons going off, seemingly with no relation to a previous poster’s (perceived) attack on them, I do wonder. What kind of group, Temple, leader or egregore encourages such paranoia? The GD’s growth and future depends on our inter-Temple/Order communication and fraternal relations. But I see none of this. Instead, I see person X snapping at person Y for a statement that may or may not be a dig at their specific group, themselves, or anything else they hold dear (and let me state for the record that I’m definitely NOT referring to personal attacks, which, while seemingly ever-present on the Internet, are worth speaking up about and defending yourself or someone else).
Are we to go the way of the Christian churches? Splintering into endless permutations, forever bickering about who is the “real” GD? About who has the right papers? About who has the real lineage? Can’t we grow up and learn from our Christian brethren’s mistakes?
Perhaps not, in fact, I’ve completely resigned myself to understanding that’s part of the nature of the ‘net, and perhaps indicative of secret societies, but I for one am completely and 100% content to remain in a Temple whose focus is the Work and not politics, forever discussing paranoid delusions about who did what this week on the Internet. Paranoia serves no one except a leader who may or may not want his followers to follow him (or her) and him alone, never thinking for themselves. Pretty much the anti-adept.