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in defence of....
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 2:08 pm
Greetings All -- I too started a long winded (ie specific) reply to some of the all-too-dogmatic assertions made by others or comments made of me or "on my behalf" but it dropped out somehow , Que Sera ,; ADG ,
- careful about making "sweeping generalizations about any national or ethnic group " eg ...'Aussies think this way and say this but mean that '.... (I know you mean well but cannot you see the inherent contradiction ? -- if "racism" is to attribute certain characteristics and
behaviour to certain ethnic,religious etc "groups" (rough guts of your definition from memory ) then ethnography, anthropology and huge amounts of archeology ,history etc are by definition "racist" -- we can ascribe even a bit of pottery say to an ethnic or racial group -- people do behave in characteristic ways within defineable groups and simply observing this is not racist . Just about anywhere someone has drawn a line on a map and "defined" a country for a "people" you can be sure they had differences with their neighbours (in both senses) and probably settled the border with violence (Australia is anomolous here and we neither had to define our borders by war or expel the hated foreigner -- we at least live with the Aboriginal inhabitants and place no legislative limitations on what they may do in this country -- ie no overt laws that deny opportunity by skin colour or race - unlike parts of the USA not so long ago, South Africa ditto, Zimbabwe , and dozens of Islamic, Asian and other countries that do exclude foreigners . Be fair here.
What does someone have to do to "defend" a charge of racism amongst you lot ? --- I quoted a black man stating the obvious truth that Independent black Africa has become a basket case and corrupt -- can one libel one's own race? (Uncle Toms aside) The scathing condemnation of white men in "chief Seattle" was by a white man . Racist ?? Why is it used by SOP? Because it suits their denigration of much of Western culture ( apparently McLaren liked Mozart so he made an exception for western music -- is this why the ex SES/SOP members are so sensitive to even defending the value of western music ? Do I have to declare myself a 'flat Earther' to get credit for opposing a round Earth SES ? Ask yourself why does the SES/SOP exist at all ? ..... One man got up on his hind legs and decided he had had a 'revelation' of some great truth and felt compelled to convey this to others , to "save the world", to create others in his image, (the motivation behind the setting up of the junior schools ?) etc -- or was he merely a conman after people's money ?
McLaren senior might have been in the first category, L Ron Hubbard most likely in the second -- either way ALL religions are the product of some individual spreading their "vision" of the truth that we all need to be converted to . All of you don't believe in 'God ' and (to virtual certainty)
have no doubt it is a manufactured fiction -- consider for instance, do you believe in Zeus, Thor, Ra, Allah, Wandgina, Poseidon, etc etc etc etc Ad infinitum -- you have no difficulty in "writing off" 99.9999% of all the Gods people have believed in, worshipped and killed or been killed for so why not take the step of 'going all the way" and realize that 'yours' is no different ? Sects
and cults split like ameoba and multiply based on some tiny point of doctrinal difference -- why focus on the minutae of SES teaching without asking why someone concocted a new one anyway? (I think most agree it is a religion not secular philosophy as advertised )
This is supposed to be a forum for discussion about the SES/SOP adult day schools -- Yes? Surely therefore it is on topic to examine what it is all about , the implications, underpinnings, influences, any validity etc etc and finally why does it exist at all and what are it's reasons for existence?
If you dont find one long specifically targetted diatribe excoriating a specific skin colour human group (race) distributed with approval by an organization to it's members "racist" then what it it ? What does it tell you about the organization ? Or can the white race not be the subject of racism ? Would that be condescending crap or just patronising or self approval by "good" whites defending the mute blacks who cannot speak for themselves ? (remember the "power of one" where the hero is a white boy standing up for the 'dumb' blacks ?)
The Gurdieff and Ouspensky influences on the SES mantra are not mentioned -- why not? Gurdieff was conned by some fake mystics and it seemed the hallmark of the wise was to 1. live in a remote place
peferably far enough away from your western followers that it seemed exotic (Tibet,China etc) rather than backward and you were out of range of anyone actually meeting you in person 2. not have any actual occupation or work at anything useful (ie have a full time activity of studying your navel,spinning prayer wheels or sitting chanting whilst you were fed by others, begging etc ) - this shows that enlightenment and real work are incompatible (Jesus Christ- a carpenter- is a real exception to this rule) 3. Speak a different language (translation sounds profound rather than just stilted and awkward ) 4. Be a different skin colour (yes the appeal of the "mysterious East" ) 5. Be incomprehensible, ambiguous or long winded,turgid, repetitive or unclear so as to allow many interpretations and seem "wiser" (remember Chancey Gardener in "Being there" played by Peter Sellers ?) - note content hardly matters and truth is probably coincidental . Being seen to 'understand' and to 'belong' by having the Guru's blessing is all important .The Maharishi, SES pin up boy of the 60's perfected this technique .
According to some web sources and books Ouspensky recanted the whole "teaching" mystic thing on his deathbed and told his followers to go their own ways -- it had been a con. The 70's film "meetings with remarkable men" about Gurdieff was so overdone as to be comical -- I seem to recall a scene in it where Gurdieff and his followers "rode out" a desert sand storm by mounting on stilts and being above the swirling dust
(given that typical sand storms are thousands of feet deep this is indeed a miracle -- of incredulity )
What IS the SES/SOP aiming to acheive and why does it have it's own schools? What happens to those who don't "drop out" or find the teachings abhorrent ? What is meant by the screed on the cover of "Secret Cult" -- "A strange cult that is infiltrating the corridors of power"
What is the 'endgame' or ultimate purpose (usually there is one) ?
Lots of similar questions must come to mind -- apart from what Mr Debenham or some other apparently somewhat psychopathic teacher did to brutalize his young charges which, although important it it's own right is not a matter concerning the adult 'schools' - except in that they recruit pupils through the children of those roped in - and ,like every other religious group will be called "just a few bad apples who give the church a bad name" "not true members" etc -- let us suppose that no violence or child abuse of any kind had occurred at any school; junior or adult;- would then anyone who had been affected by the SES/SOP as a member, relative,spouse feel the need for 'retribution, confession,compensation,explanation, cessation, repair or any other action by the SES/SOP ? Ie is there something to be done to correct any of their damages or disservices ? Are they benign or malign ?
Any answers or comments -- what are we discussing this all for?
Ross. (not a heretic just a naughty boy - with apologies to "Brien" )
SES school today
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 5:01 pm
You are right about Ouspensky, he did tell his followers to disband but not because it HAD BEEN a con but because he knew it was inevitable it would BECOME ONE. He foresaw that the organisation they would form would go into decline as they tried to crystallise and enshrine his teachings and practices into a fixed set of formulae, credos and beliefs. As indeed happened with the Gurdjieff school, the Protestant church, the SES, Marks & Spencer, Saatchi & Saatchi and virtually all top down organisations until they either reinvent themselves or die.
It has happened throughout history and will continue to happen. People start marching North under a banner called, say, 'Absolute Truth' . Over time, due to the operation of the laws of mechanical repetition in nature they make a series of imperceptible shifts until they are eventually marching purposefully South.
But whenever they look up they see the slogan ?Absolute Truth? . They are greatly reassured and march with renewed vigour. I don't know what happens next but I suspect something circular. That is what Ouspensky's 'the Strange Life of Ivan Osokin' is about.
The most notable example in our culture was the Council of Nicea which, in 324 A.D., set down the dogma that was to become the cornerstone of the Christian church (which had recently become the official religion of the Roman empire). This enshrined dogma was, in many ways, diametrically opposed to Christ's teachings but had the monopoly of the Christian brand for over 12 centuries.
The genesis and DNA of the SES brand is a funny amalgam of half-baked ?truths? riddled with contradictions : I have tried to briefly sketch it out, as I know it, in the topic 'St James and SES: genesis of the relationship'. Where it was marching 50 years ago and where it is marching now are definitely very different places but with all the spin, legal ducking and diving and PR froth it is not easy to see the kayak for the foam. But more of that some other time perhaps but K. Watson?s valiant efforts to bring a burst of sanity seem like a lone voice in the aloof, humbug-ridden, SES forest.
She knows better than anyone what a gruesome cocktail of suburban morality and snobbery led Lambie to first expel her daughter from the SES for ?disobeying? his direct order not to accept the starring role as Bess McNeill in Lars Trier?s brilliant ?Breaking the Waves? (because she would have to appear naked in a couple of scenes ? shock horror!) only to quickly re-admit her when she got an Oscar nomination. It is that kind of phoney morality that makes the SES such a slimy and intellectually bankrupt organisation. Where do the long skirts fit in? That?s another story.
KW?s pragmatic and inspired decision to segregate those who loved the meditation from those who weren?t interested was great. It contrasts sharply with Mad Monk Mavro in Sydney (referred to elsewhere in these postings) who used to patrol adult groups during meditation wielding a 6ft long cane. He took great delight in reaching across a row of bolt upright, terrified students to flick up the torpid noses of any ?nodding donkeys?. Well, like the teaching as a whole the phrase ?balanced and upright? is a hoary old SES injunction which, applied in a mechanistic way, is capable of many interpretations ! But Mavro always protested his innocence claiming he was only following orders??
You ask, legitimately, what is the SES trying to achieve? Good question. In the 60?s and 70?s it could never make up its mind whether it was a radical anti-establishment organisation seeking to challenge conventional thinking on many subjects (including organised religion and economics) or a right wing moral rearmament style set up seeking to ?raise the level of consciousness of the Nation? (sic). It is that latter moral rearmament mode that appealed to most (but not all) St.James and St.Vedast teachers and gave them licence to kick their charges into shape.
The advent of Thatcherism swung it definitively into the right-wing loadsamoney pinstriped establishment camp. Hard to say what its purpose is now other than as a pleasant social club, making millions from property speculation and sending ?tutors? out to our former colonies to spread the Word. I?m sure there is a banner somewhere which you can check what the Word is.
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 6:35 pm
bella wrote:ADG and Free, Indian scripture is held up as being fine - the Upanishads, the Mahabharata, etc. Sanskrit is also held up as being the "perfect" language, and students at the school study it - spoken and written.
We know this (remember, I was a member of the SoPP for 19 years) - but that's not what ADG was referring to. She was talking about art as in visual arts, music, poetry, dance, drama, etc. That's very different from the actual scriptures of the religion that the SES takes most of it's beliefs from.
Yes, we did read some poetry and do drama from India, but both were directly connected with the religion. I was thinking about secular writing (some containing religious material but not direct religious material.)
In terms of Ross's example of Mozart being the exception for Western music - in my 19 years, almost all music we ever sang or played was Western - Gregorian chants, American folk songs, spirituals, classical and a little from the Romantic era, other Christian songs, some Hebrew songs, , some Jazz (which is Western, btw, having been invented in the US,) Western Opera, etc. Concerts always included these, and only once can I remember a concert which included Indian dance done to traditional Indian music.
I, myself, was an opera singer for many years, and studied Western piano for even more. Right now I am taking singing workshops for Balkan music (some is more Western, some is more Middle-Eastern). No problems with Western music here. Only problems with excluding other types of music which are just just as good, only different.
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 7:49 pm
Mavro in Sydney...who used to patrol adult groups during meditation wielding a 6ft long cane. He took great delight in reaching across a row of bolt upright, terrified students to flick up the torpid noses of any ?nodding donkeys?
I always think I won't be surprised at anything the School has done, and yet I am again! And this man is still heading a (different) school?!?
on a decidely lighter note, this reminds me of the man assisting in Plato class...he and the teacher sit in front of the group, we are in a semi-circle facing them, and the assistant never fails to fall asleep three or four times during the two hour class. He is quite good at it, no nodding, spine stacked upright, eyes closed like he is deeply listening, and every so often they open and he speaks...but he is snoozing sweetly. it is hilarious to watch him & the teacher try not to see him.
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 8:06 pm
Well, if you do stay in the school until meditation initiation time, just wait until you see the class (and tutor!!!!) meditating.
My mother has talked about how much meditation has helped her. I think that's because the school says that adults need only 5-6 hours of sleep and those extra two half-hour naps she takes when "meditating" really help her to function better!!!!
Seriously, though, I'm surprised that I never heard anyone talk about falling asleep while meditating and how to deal with it. I certainly slept through about half of it. Especially on residentials at Walkill. Not that there weren't times when I truely meditated, and I did have some wonderful, sort of esoteric experiences when doing it, but esp. on those retreats, everyone is tired. I guess no one wants to admit that they sleep during meditation and so it's never brought up. But how are the tutors going to be good role models if you catch THEM falling sleep?
I also consistently fell asleep during classes on residentials (not during the week) and this was one lightbulb for me in terms of "What am I doing here?" I never got enough sleep on my residentials and couldn't help it.
Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2005 10:59 pm
Please excuse a quick aside to Ross.
Ross yes it was something of a sweeping generalisation, but reading you hail from Mildura and having known many older country people I've seen the attitude over and over again. And just to pull you up about Australian law - can I remind you that Aborigines did not officially exist until the 1967 referendum when they were finally given citizenship in their own country. Prior to that they had NO rights and their lives were governed by the various state Aboriginal Protection *cough* Boards. Also can I also remind you of the "White Australia Policy" - which was only FINALLY given the shove off it deserved in the Whitlam era (early 70s).
OK, aside finished
but that's not what ADG was referring to. She was talking about art as in visual arts, music, poetry, dance, drama, etc
Yes FT that is EXACTLY what I meant. I don't know a lot about Indian culture but have certainly enjoyed reading many modern day Indian authors. Surely for a culture that has flourised for so long they have their own Shakespeares, Mozarts and Monets?
Posted: Wed Jun 22, 2005 12:11 pm
Greetings ; at least we got a substantitive response and indeed elicited some real new material that illuminates (more light less heat )
Gandalf the wise -- I have thanked you for you contribution on your thread "SES and genesis of the schools" (sic) -- reccomend a view.
If one arrives at the destination (North pole) then the ONLY direction to go is south . Has the SES "arrived", ie run out of idealogical opponents (like the anti communist league ) and is it just running on momentum or have it's 'secrets' become common knowledge through the new age movement and fail to have the original attraction or is there more to it ? Why do "tutors" give up one night every week to work without payment in passing on the beliefs to new 'respondents' most of whom do not become members ? I would have thought they might be engaged in attaining ever higher levels of conciousness rather than serving tea or dealing with the 'ordinary' .
I will try to find and real Ouspensky's "strange life of Ivan Osokin" -- any leads ? Is it like Kafka ?
Also who is K.Watson and can you expand on what influence she had (did she kick about "the exercise" as it seems and why,when etc did Lambie (successor to McLaren?) expel her daughter -- what significance to the SES was this ? The Sydney branch does seem to have been a little more bizarre than usual -- do they still run classes in "economic science" and if so why not elsewhere . I think there has been a split in the Sydney group and some other website on it.
Coincidently (or was it Karma/serendipity ) Warren Mitchell (played Alf Garnett in 'till death do us part') was interviewed on Radio National 'the spirit of things' program last night and spoke at length about his wife's, then his, involvement with the London SES, the teachings (obliquely) meditation,Gurdieff (he played G's father in the "meetings with..." film ) etc and gave a plug for the Sydney SES etc (transcript should be on Radio National's -ABC- website)
F.T.-- I know very little about the music side of SES/SOP apart from what I have read so accept your testimony on this -- I had understood that McLaren virtually fixated on Mozart and all popular music was 'evil' 'coarse' and to be avoided . Jazz of course is derived from African tribal music , essentially 'black' culture based (Jazz means sex according to some sources ) even if first formulated for western instruments in the USA -- the current "rap" music and a lot of pop music is coming out of the largely black ghetto environment and seems to be pretty short on uplifting lyrics or lighthearted tunes etc -- possibly the sort of 'grunge' music and drug lifestyle etc promoted on music videos and media etc gives the impetus for the likes of McLaren to condemn so much of recent music (ie before 200 years ago or so )
The treatment of native peoples and Australian Aboriginals in particular is more than a simple "right or wrong" matter -- the granting of full achohol drinking 'rights' to Aboriginals has resulted in massive destruction of culture, quality of life, abilities and average lifespan with endemic wife bashing and jailing even though Aboriginal 'rights' advocates and civil libertarian ideals were behind the 'advance' . Not having any cultural exposure to alcohol may have contributed to this terrible outcome -- now a new non inhalable petrol (gasoline) is being distributed to try to stop the brain damage and doping out of young Aboriginals . The giving of "fire water" to the Indians in America might be comparable -- is it "civilized" behaviour to expose a race of people to white man's worst creations when they are unable to deal with it ? (by demonstration,- not 'racist' theory )
Doesn't exposure to certain 'corrupting' ideas and teachings similarly damage young brains -- mostly religious based but also strident communist propaganda and NAZI mind control (Hitler youth etc -- Richard Dawkins rightly says how outraged we would be to talk of "Tory" children or "Labour" "Democrat""republican" etc and segregate them in schools to program their minds politically so why are we not also outraged about "Catholic" school children or "SES" for that matter ? Child abuse ?
ADG -- I'm detecting a growing sense of condescension verging on arrogance in your comments about or (tangentially) to me -- you obviously have very fixed ideas about "older country people" who are so obviously 'country bumpkins' and need to be 'made allowance for' in their narrow minded simplicity .. No thanks, I was born in Melbourne, grew up in Mildura (a relatively large metropolitan regional centre) and have lived overseas (Europe and the US) and cosmopolitan inner city ,university quarter etc for the thirty plus years since . I am only 51 and lived worked and studied in Europe then the US from 19 so I don't think I fit your apparent idea of a simple "Hick" . I also duxed Mildura college (now Chaffey college) . Australians, like all other people, come in all shades and varieties and many people of great acheivement and intellect choose to live or retire "in the sticks" so please try not to categorize or sweeping generalization as you strongly SEEM to do . Cryptic, short and short on meaning postings or just plain smart arse commentary are unfortunate facts of internet exchanges -- I am not into being "chatty" or need to waste time in this fashion but I am interested in learning some facts about the SES/SOP since it seemed to be a haven for non religious, thinking people to share and develop ideas (which is something missing once one leaves school or wishes to expand into other areas than those you studied in youth ) I was not looking to get sucked into some weird, possibly malevolent but definitely intellectually deficient and dishonest, cultish 'thing' based on Hindu dogma and religion.
For other readers :I live in a city of four million people with a number of universities,technical institutes etc and a rich cultural and scientific life - Australia is not some ex penal backwater although a Swedish friend in Germany sure had that view from his education -- the only thing I heard about Australia in a number of years away was the destruction of Darwin by Cyclone tracey (Dec 1974) -- there is a local denigration of ourselves and our best and brightest called the tall poppy synrome that tends to inhibit intellectual acheivement or disagreement (keep your head down and don't rock the boat lest you be singled out for censure .........) So unlike the US promotion of individual success and acheivement.
I stand by all my comments regarding Aboriginal cultural attainment and do not automatically ridicule the general principles that seemed to underlie the SES teaching of "higher things" in art and thought , although it does seem to have become perverted and one track (Vedic) -- to just "equate" everything for the sake of political correctness is false and cannot be honestly believed , A mud hut is NOT equivalent to a skyscraper and a primitive chant not equal to a magnificent symphony even allowing for "cultural bias" -- to try to aver otherwise smacks of group think seeking approval and hypocritical unless you choose to back up your beliefs and live in a lean to, only listen to chanting etc etc -- to say it is OK "for them" is really racist -- Aboriginals are encouraged to learn their dances, wear fake corroboree paint and equally fake ,red, loinclothes and get a "career" acting out dances for tourists .
This approach treats them like "basket cases" unworthy of being given positions in mainstream society and in effect kept in an open human "zoo" for the entertainment of rich whites -- I believe they are as capable of getting out of poverty and the dreadful state typical of 95% plus of their race by using their inherently equal talents which are unable to be used because of the cultural "museum" they are expected to inhabit -- the SES/SOP Gurdieff/ Guru teaching basis is consistent to this in that it recognizes the need to focus and discipline our talents and minds to really attain any significant good --just about all the Aboriginal leaders have Irish surnames if you notice and seem to have shown that when raised in mainstream society they are as capable as any others - those left to their own culture have almost uniformly finished up on the bottle and in the gutter (sort of like the Afro American example in effect )
Intellectual honesty on any subject has to face brute facts of experience and draw conclusions on evidence not cant. The fruits of Hinduism do not seem too marvellous on their own and the destructive caste/Karma system is not something I find admirable or worthy of copying -- the popular denigration of western thought and cultural/scientific attainment is common to modern 'alternative' /new age adherents and to the SES/SOP which is why I can find myself opposed to both on many issues.
I don't need to be lectured on Australian political history let alone incorrectly -- ADG -- when the resoundingly supported referendum to redress the absence of Aboriginals from "citizenship rights" (vote etc) in the Constitution was passed in 1967 WE were all 'British subjects' - there is no reference to Citizens or any human rights ,citizen rights etc in the Australian constitution then or now . On entering England in 1973 I had to go through the ' Non EEC ' non British national' entrance -- "we" Australian children of those who fought for the mother country and empire were without any more rights than former enemies or any others .
In practical terms the white Australia policy did not apply to blacks in Australia (was anyone exiled?) but sought to protect Australian labour from Chinese 'swamping' taking our jobs (sound familiar ??) -- that the nation overwhelmingly voted to give full explicit rights to black Australians gives lie to the racist tag (even backward old country folk...)
We never explicitly excluded Aboriginals from participation in society or enslaved them (nor did the English import slaves to do their work in England as far as I know ) -- give some credit to the integrity and somewhat good intentions of our forbears (don't denigrate them without having facts ) but also don't just worship them (ancestor worship as in Vedic ancient writings) I spent a number of years fighting an explicitly racist piece of legislation (part of the Air Navigation Act ) that denied any Australian the right to design aircraft in Australia but placed no barriers on "overseas" designers -- you can find transcripts of my evidence on Auslii, the federal parliamentary reports, Transafe , Equal opportunity commission etc -- I had to study "Commentaries on the Constitution" by the two men who wrote it , Quick and Garran and studied the Mabo judgement and submissions in great detail also anthroplogists like Strelow and medical tomes that revealed long pre white contact disease from bone studies (until PC made this 'illegal') a famed Aboriginal historian lived not far from us in Mildura and found many of the trading routes for exchange of artifacts and special flint type stone etc.
Aboriginal culture attained sustainability in an incredibly harsh environment but little progress in thousands of years largely because of brutally enforced prohibitions on change and rigid doctrine ( also curiously the idea of marrying off the young women to old men not that unlike what I read of the SES and I thought you,ADG, found offensive.? )
See how a few opiniated "put downs" can require a bit more depth to refute or put into proper perspective ? Anyway even dumb rural oafs have a right to hold differing beliefs to the "correct" ones and it might be good practice to ask someone why they say something you don't 'get' or understand - that way you can learn .
It is somewhat apparent that there is an undercurrent of intolerance in the SES school 'victim' responses with resort to name calling etc rather than argument or discussion -- not a good sign but typical of other cultish groups who gain strength from mutual reinforcement of the absurd -- the Jehovah's Witnesses excell at this (also the Citizen's electoral council whom I also tripped over as it were ) -- these are not just academic curiosities or debating points -- when your Mother is going into surgery and has insisted that no blood be given even if it could save her life do you decide to overide that and say any "guilt" would reside in you or someone else if a transfusion was given - do you not tell her if so ?
Do you let her die to "respect" ideas you find ridiculous ? (for example you cannot 'consume' blood - really? Who "bleeds" fish or game before cooking and eating it ? How much "lifeblood" remains in normal steak ?
Those JW's who truly believed the end of the world was going to happen in 1975 and gave away their property in anticipation not only looked foolish when it didn't but had their life support system pulled from under them -- even a crutch is better than being lame. Is the SES/SOP in any way deluding people or making them dependent and heading for a fall in some similar manner? They certainly seem to have created a legacy of bitterness in their children -- should this be let continue unchecked ?
I am after thoughtful and experience backed input to these questions and clearly the other part of the "why are they dead" site is addressing the not dissimilar Scientology based damage. Can something be done even if it was desired? What and how?
Over to you Ross
Posted: Wed Jun 22, 2005 2:35 pm
You will find KW in the NEW MESSAGE FROM DAVID BODDY string which she started. She now teaches at St James (since about 1998). A good egg as they say in PG Wodehouse stories and willing to experiment and follow her instincts whatever the consequences. A rare egg indeed in the SES inasmuch as willing to publicly admit to and apologise for mistakes.
Significance to the SES of her daughter's 'disobedience' was simply that it challenged the sanctimonious Lambie half-baked morality system and, more importantly, his absolute authority in relation to the Youth Groups of which she was a member at the time. More on these later perhaps. The Oscar nomination of course changed everything cos' suddenly she was a 'celeb' and was better inside the organisation than outside.
Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 12:23 am
there is a local denigration of ourselves and our best and brightest called the tall poppy synrome that tends to inhibit intellectual acheivement or disagreement
now who is rashly generalising?
Ross I kept my answer to you brief as it is OT. I will be brief again. It seems that you buy into the revisionist version of Australian history that is currently being expounded by Windshuttle. The fact that eminent historians like Reynolds have driven Mac trucks thru holes in his argument & research has certainly not deterred even the likes of our PM from favouring and pushing the Windshuttle line. If you want to also buy into this sanitised version of our history so be it. As for "rights" - you are being a pedent. althought we don't have a "bill of rights" like in the US the most basic "right" in a democracy is the right to vote - Aboriginals were not allowed this right until 1967.
Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 5:01 am
As ADG has pointed out, all this discussion of race and history is not pertinent to the topic of this thread, Ross. Please keep your comments on topic or start a new thread to see if anyone actually wants to waste their time discussing racial issues. I for one, do not, particularly with someone who wants to try to explain jazz to me. There is no "of course" - you obviously don't know anything about jazz.
ADG - One of the issus with art and music in the schools is that because virtually everything taught stems from what MacLaren personally liked (so much for letting go of the ego, huh!), everything is extremely wierd and exclectic - and not in a good way - and no one seems to have branched out at all even since his death.
So many questions about why something is done a certain way can (and have been , specifically answered to me) as "Because Mr. M liked it that way.) So even if he's never going to see a certain item, it has to be prepared the way he liked it. For no reason! And it isn't questioned. I think that all of the art and music falls under this category, and if it is questioned, then it will be explained that he believed or KNEW that certain things were "fine" and others were "coarse" and that's why we listen/watch/sing those certain things. Of course it all boils down to one crazy man's opinion.
Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 7:51 am
Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 11:35 am
Just lost two hours of typed response but I probably should accept anyway the impossibility of keeping up with "politically correct" garbage and rebutting the non facts so easily posted - if it makes ADG feel happy can we simply state that Aboriginal culture is indisputably superior to any decadent Western acheivement ? this would include Aboriginal painting ,music,mathematics,writing,architecture, clothing , technology etc etc -- also that if Henry Reynolds said that ,say !0,000,000 peace loving aboriginals were slaughtered by the bloodthirsty whites or that it was worse than the holocaust then -- no contest you must be right . There is no commonly understood term "tall poppy syndrome" and I just made it up? That the "right" to vote is more important than the right to freedom or security of person , that voting in Australia is NOT compulsory,demanded.,mandatory and punishable by imprisonment but IS a "democratic" 'right' ? That women did not get the vote until long after federation , that Reynoldsand Windshuttle were NOT talking about the period of history many decades before the 1967 referendum, (and that Reynolds' claims have been comprehensively 'disproved' by record ),etc etc etc ..........
Can we also revise the truth by stating that ADG did NOT raise the topic of the fabricated "stupid crass white man" speech and another respondent state that "there must be similar or related poetic ..sayings by aboriginals right there in Australia " etc -- if (as is the sad fact) there are no fabricated words to put into a black aboriginal mouth like "Chief Seattle" can we make some up? (and "attribute" them as a fact ) All OK ?
How about that 'racist' jokes about Madame De Gaulle's accent are both "on topic" and important to the investigation of the SES/SOP ?
That Jazz has nothing to do with Black African culture and did not originate with black African music,the blues etc ?
Anything else I should recant to be politically acceptable?
Disrespect for simple truth in both fact and meaning cannot be criticised in the SES/SOP if you don't respect it yourself and I am uninterested in that sort of dishonest behaviour.
Like I said I wasted two hours plus on wading through the half truth and don't have time to waste on idle chit chat when real issues need to be addressed .
I will start a thread to specifically investigate the initiation of an official enquiry into the adult school practices similar to the 1965 government enquiry into scientology held in Victoria,Australia .
No politically correct postings though or labelling based on unfounded prejudices "new age" or otherwise -- credibility can be indermined by very little self serving aggrandizement that will not stand objective scrutiny and must be avoided.
All serious contributions welcomed. Ross.
thanks for link Mike
Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2005 12:01 am
Mike, Thanks for the ABC interview with Warren Mitchell link (you don't miss much! ) -- I might ,no will, contact Rachel Conn and see if she might like to do a more in depth look into the SOP here -- could elicit some contact from ex members or current inductees . (sorry to say but my connection and long posting 'froze' somehow and I couldn't send or even print it when this came through)
This is the sort of activity I think should be taken to counter the agenda of the SOP -- ' the evil prospers only if good men DO nothing' thing is dependent on real useful actions being taken in the 'real world' and has to be specific and based on facts,law etc . -- chit chat between individuals can't of itself do any good.
Possible avenues to have investigation and accountability include -- local council (housing the local SOP -- so far they admit to not even having a written lease on the community centre despite ten years of occupation , one councillor had done the course ) newspapers carrying adverts (can complain to industry monitoring authority - a conflict of interest within the paper to 'expose' it's own advertisers though) competing and non advert carrying newspapers , railway advertising approvers, educational standards authorities, fair trading and commercial regulators , members of parliament , investigative TV etc reporters.
Other suggestions welcomed -- some networks like the cult busters and of course the internet (your site primarily as an interactive and evidence based forum ) could assist as might some of the public interest legal services ; possibly real religious organizations who,even if you don't agree with them , defend 'legitimate' religion against bogus and protect the turf in effect.
A just decided case of religious vilification in Victoria (the "catch the fire ministries" vs Islam ) has upheld a complaint of denigration of another race or religious belief ( the" Chief Seattle/" denigration of western culture thing in SOP would parallel this ) -- it is essential to have a factual basis for defence of such claims rather than just politically correct hogwash . (ie it IS ok to state 'unpalatable' but verifiable facts and you don't have to pretend everything is 'equal' somehow ie a stone age axe is just as advanced as a chainsaw just 'different' . )
One little "Bright" spot in all this is that I became aware of the "Brights" movement from this interchange and have joined -- the initial attraction of an organization "for thinking men and women...devoted to the exploration of truth and understanding " falseley and deceptively claimed by the SOP has led to finding a body truly formed to promote true thinking and understanding . (although only a virtual web body at the moment)
Any organization that tells a young woman she 'was' evil in a past life and therefore deserved a miscarriage is both superstitious,backward and basically evil and manipulative -- the bashings and child abuse underline it's true nature and how it should be treated.
ADG's description of the reality of barbaric behaviour as a "pissing contest" is both crude and unworthy and anyhow innappropriate for a woman -- the intentions of the SOP to promote the higher ideals and 'finer' things that the female side probably do tend to uphold and temper male tendencies with is only bolstered by such comments and subsequent lambasting prejudice. The motives of those "interested" in the SES/SOP and expressing concern about how they might bequeath their money are questionable -- certainly the reasons for trying to eliminate destructive and false teaching in the community should be above mere greed which is itself part of the problem, not the solution.
A focussed,structured program to oppose the SOP based on intellectual honesty and facts must succeed and do much good -- just don't expect thanks or reward for it.
I'll post in the "investigation into adult SOP .." thread from now on .
Ross . (flame away if it makes you feel better )
Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2005 12:04 am
Please take this Australian issues contest to a seperate thread. I've opened one up for ease of use. Have fun!http://www.whyaretheydead.net/phpBB2/vi ... =3584#3584
Re: thanks for link Mike
Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2005 12:19 am
ross nolan wrote:
ADG's description of the reality of barbaric behaviour as a "pissing contest" is both crude and unworthy and anyhow innappropriate for a woman
"...inappropriate for a women" ?
Ross your posts are starting to sound a tad SESish