Mundane Politics and the Golden Dawn Temple

The Temple (or Lodge, or Order or whatever the official title) is no place for politics. This is the stance of the Temple of Thoth Amen-Ra, and is the stance of many groups I’ve belonged to or been associated with. But why is this?

To begin simply, politics (such as discussions of the pros and cons of a particular political party for instance) have no place in a magical group. The politics of the mundane should not be used to further anyone’s agenda, whether as a leader or a member. There is however, overlap in certain cases. Here are the few times I can think of when politics should overlap:

1. When a potential member’s political beliefs could potentially be harmful to the group.

This could take place for example, if a potential member is also a member of a political group that does not conform to the high standards of the magical order. As far as excluding members, our Temple states in its Constitution:

No person shall be excluded from membership on account of sex, race, religion, or specific tradition of magic that does not conflict with the purpose and mission of the Temple. (The mission of the Temple of Thoth Amen-Ra can be found on our website.)

Let’s take an extreme example of a potential member who could be refused entrance despite the non-mention of politics in the aforementioned section. Take the fictitious “Bob,” who feels that whites are a superior race,  and belongs to several neo-nazi organizations.

There’s no way that I at least, could on good grounds, allow him entrance into our Temple.  I don’t pretend to speak for other members of my Temple, but I can’t imagine any of them voting “Bob” in. This is for the simple reason that intolerance has no place in a magical order, especially one based on the Golden Dawn. I know however, that the Cipher Manuscripts state to “Avoid Roman Catholics. But with pity.”, but I feel these are more an outgrowth of the early Rosicrucian association with Protestantism. In most modern GD organizations that I am aware of, a Roman Catholic would not be denied entrance just because of their religious beliefs.

2. When mundane politics interfere with the Temple.

This latter possibility seems far removed in the United States, where the founding fathers were masons, and the long and respected history of fraternal orders has existed in and with politics, but who knows what the future holds?

The last time that fraternal orders were persecuted was the Third Reich, when approximately between 80,000 and 200,000 Freemasons were executed in the Holocaust (Wikipedia). I am unaware of the number of magical orders that were shut down, but most famously the OTO was persecuted. In a case like this, it would behoove the Temple to openly discuss the influence of politics on their group. I have no idea what the best course of action would be in this case, and hope I never have to deal with it.

So, while I’m absolutely opposed to bringing politics into the Temple for personal or inter-Temple political ends, there are exceptions to the rule.

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8 Responses to Mundane Politics and the Golden Dawn Temple

  1. Dean Wilson says:

    I agree completely. A Neo-Nazi would not be welcome in my temple and I would strongly object to and petition against an acceptance of such a member in my or any other GD Order. A Neo-Nazi would simply be unable to take their Oath and meand and live it if there was a black member of the Temple, for example. The negative attitude espoused by such a person would be very destructive to the group and egregore.

    I likewise hope none of us ever have to deal with persecutation from any groups, including governments.

    I wrote a new post that has some parallels to yours, which is all about the grounds for accepting and rejecting members. It ends with an open question, so feel free to post there 🙂

    LVX,
    Dean.

  2. frateraene says:

    Thanks Frater for your feedback. I’ll be sure to comment on your blog entry as well!

    LVX,

    Fr. AENE

  3. Arcad says:

    Care Fr. AENE,

    I could not agree more. In most lodges it is a rule that politics and religion is not to be discussed amongst members. In that case, only if a member is promoting his views or is known to be member of such a group as mentioned by you, one could or wouldneed to take action. However, tolerance, freedom of spirit etc are essential within the GD community. The reference to the Third Reich is well made as we see that our freedoms can not be taken for granted. If I may refer to a recent post of mine http://solitarydawn.blogspot.com/2010/01/prohibition-of-gd-nothing-is-for.html where I have added some document that lists orders, groups and lodges that were prohibited. As you can see, also the GD (as the “Hermetische Orden der Goldenen Dämmerung”) was amongst these groups… This past we always should keep in mind – not only because of teh GD being a target but also because this fact creates some obligation to defend the freedom of mind, spirit, religion etc…

    In L.V.X.
    Arcad

    • frateraene says:

      Care Arcad,

      Thanks for your comment and your blog link. I’ve set you up on my list of GD blogs. I did not know that the German GD was in the list of prohibitions from the Nazis! Good to know.

      -Fr. AENE

  4. Interesting post. I can certainly see the advantages to such rules being introduced but really there should be little time to discuss them inside Temple. I personally like some social banter before and after ritual and thankfully the set up at our temple is that we can have this in private area BEFORE going into the Temple. This adds to the presence of mind.

    I would be personally wary of taking the “no mundane politicking rule” too literally in some cases. Its that tricky balance between being at ease and respecting one’s fratres and sorores.

    We all have our own prejudices when comes to issues such as race, gender, orientation, marital status, disability, age, and creed, etc. Though when any of these are taken to an extremity they can all impact negatively on a magician’s relationships with members of the Temple and indeed the Order at large. The example of neo-nazism is quite an apt one as a new form of nazism it tends to be rather volatile internally as well as externally. It often has a militaristic attitude towards all the issues.

  5. frateraene says:

    Niall,

    We have the same sort of process – both before and after the ritual work we tend to get most of our business and just bantering out of the way.

    I’m not quite following you when you say you’re wary of taking the “no mundane politicking rule” too literally. Maybe I just can’t think of a case when mundane politics have a place in temple meetings.

  6. I was Goggling around for some good info about Golden Dawn Temples ,I found your blog.thanks for sharing your research.

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