Tag Archives: Pop Culture

It’s official: I’m getting ordained.

To my considerable surprise, my church recently decided to nominate me to the priesthood. After a couple of days of turning this around in my head and examining it from a few angles, questioning whether I’m worthy, whether I’m ready, whether I’m the right person for the job, I accepted their decision.

Today, our Patriarch, The Most Reverend Mar +Iohannes IV announced officially that I’m to be ordained along with a bunch of my fellow seminarians. So in May, Min and I will go to San Francisco to attend the AJC Conclave (well, I’ll be attending Conclave, I’m hoping Min will be sightseeing) where my life takes an irrevocable turn.

When I return, our small Sydney group Saint Uriel the Archangel Gnostic Community will become the Parish of Saint Uriel the Archangel and start offering more public services as we begin the process of community-building in earnest.

To answer some commonly asked questions:

I’m not finished in the seminary course; there’s a lot more to learn. The AJC regards the formation of a priest to be parallel to seminary studies — the two processes proceed at their own rate.

This is not a change in career; the AJC is a small church and none of our clergy are employed by their parish. Perhaps that might change in the future, but I think there’s a lot to be said for priests who live in the world.

When I’m ordained, my Orders will be valid, apostolic orders — which means in plain language that I will be a priest in the same spiritual sense (though in a very different organisational sense) as a Roman Catholic priest (for instance). That means that I am able to provide the sacraments (baptism, confirmation, unction, eucharist, reconciliation and matrimony) and those sacraments have the same validity as those provided by a priest in a larger church.

Australian Federal law does not automatically grant me the right to perform legally valid marriages, even though my church gives me the right to provide the sacrament of matrimony. That distinction is, I think, an interesting and productive thing to explore for couple seeking to formalise their relationship — it means you could choose to seek either matrimony or marriage at separate times.

I could become legally licensed as a marriage celebrant and therefore be able to provide both, but until I am able to marry my beloved in my own country, I do not intend to do that. My church provides its sacraments to “all humanity without discrimination on the basis of gender, race, social status or sexual orientation” (one of the many reasons I’m here) and I would be thrilled to offer matrimony to gay or lesbian couple who wish to celebrate their eternal bond before the Divine.

Each of those points could probably bear expanding and there’s more I’d like to say, which leads me to my next point:

To celebrate my happy news, I’ve started another blog. This one is focussed on spirituality, specifically the modern, gnostic, post-dualistic spirituality I’m pursuing in association with the AJC. It will have reports from my own journey, comments on stuff I’m reading both in my studies and on the web, perhaps occasional references to the news… stuff like that.

Please come visit and put my new site’s feed in your feed reader.

He’s Just Had Coffee” continues, but it’s mostly going to be focussed on personal stuff and silly pop culture.

(This post is cross-posted to both “He’s Just Had Coffee” and “… as upon a straight road”)

Lovecraft joke

I’ve told this a few times, but never written it down. Here goes.

[HP Lovecraft](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H._P._Lovecraft) and [August Derleth](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/August_Derleth) are sitting at an al fresco cafe on the abominable plateau of [Leng](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leng). Sipping absinthe, as you do. It’d be a nice place if it wasn’t for the maddening cyclopean architecture with the obviously alien non-Euclidean geometry, but it’s the only spot for unthinkably vast distances and it’s got a lovely view, so you make do.

As they sit there, the ground before becomes disturbed by the passing of a great [Dhole](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhole_%28Cthulhu_Mythos%29), burrowing beneath the earth, space rippling around it as it goes.

They sip their absinthe as the Dhole is followed by a Mi-Go, flapping and screeching – the noise driving several nearby patrons mad.

A [shoggoth](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoggoth) comes after, shambling along. It takes some time to pass, so they order another round of absinthe.

Then a long train of the spawn of [Shub-Niggurath](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shub-Niggurath), the Black Goat of the Woods, ooze, crawl and tilt their way past – the locomotive systems reminiscent of slime running down a rock… but sideways… unthinkably sideways.

Then for a moment, there’s quiet and the plateau is empty… and Derleth turns to Lovecraft and says…

“Good Lord, Howard. Today it’s just one damned thing after another.”

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Helsinki Complaints Choir

I don’t quite know why I find a group of Finns whining to music as beautiful as I do…

But I do!

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RIP: Robert Anton Wilson 1932-2007

After a long illness, Robert Anton Wilson, died on January 11.

Various people, [R. U. Sirius](http://www.10zenmonkeys.com/2007/01/11/robert-anton-wilson-1932-2007/), [Fr. Jordan+](http://egina2.blogspot.com/2007/01/remembering-bob-wilson.html), [Bro. Jeremy](http://www.snant.com/fp/archives/rip-robert-anton-wilson-raw/), [Bill Harryman](http://integral-options.blogspot.com/2007/01/speedlinking-11207.html) (from whom I got the news), [lvx23](http://www.lvx23.com/weblog/archives/2007/01/robert_anton_wi_1.html) and I’m certain [many others](http://blogsearch.google.com/blogsearch?hl=en&q=robert+anton+wilson&btnG=Search+Blogs) offer tributes both short and long.

I read “The Illuminatus! Trilogy” when I was 18… Bob is almost single-handedly responsible for the odd shapes that remain embedded in the interior of my cranium to this day. Thanks to Bob, I’d read [Leary](http://www.leary.com/) talking about LSD as a sacrament *before* I got drunk for the first time. He led me to [Korzybski](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Korzybski) and to [Crowley](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleister_Crowley), Bob was my first spiritual teacher.

He was an original. The world is a slightly smaller and much sadder place without him.

We’ll miss you, mate.

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Tipped off by [RockWiz](http://www20.sbs.com.au/rockwiz/) to the following trippy factoid:
> “At age 47, Bill Wyman began a relationship with 13-year old Mandy Smith, with her mother’s blessing. Six years later, they were married, but the marriage only lasted a year. Not long after, Bill’s 30-year-old son Stephen married Mandy’s mother, age 46. That made Stephen a stepfather to his former stepmother. (If Bill and Mandy had remained married, Stephen would have been his father’s father-in-law and his own grandfather.)”

Thank you Wikipedia!

Madonna pillages the street. Again.

Ms Ciccone has a flair for pillaging urban city trends for video ideas ([Cade and his commenter Jay document this more thoroughly than I could](http://rcade7.blogspot.com/2006/06/done-it-again.html)).

The recent video “Jump” features a bunch of guys running *[le parkour](http://del.icio.us/timbomb/parkour)* through Tokyo. Parkour is a street art that [began in France](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkour#History) which has been bubbling along globally for around ten years or so. I guess now it’s gone mainstream – Ms C has a good sense for when something’s about to [tip](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tipping_Point).

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The Knights of the Temple of Jerusalem

As [this](http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/10/13/222223) notes, yesterday was arithmetically interesting, but it was also the anniversary of the day Phillip IV of France slaughtered the [Knights Templar](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knights_Templar) – [Friday 13](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friday_13th) October 1307. October 13 doesn’t come around on a Friday too often.

The day is remembered by many European Gnostics as “[Martyrdom of the Holy Templars](http://www.gnosis.org/ecclesia/homily_Templars.htm)” since as well as being the first bankers and [a pack of fairly brutal thugs, they were also custodians of the Gnostic traditions](http://egina.blogspot.com/2005/10/on-day-of-martyrdom-of-holy-templars.html), precursors to [Freemasonry](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freemasonry), the [Rosicrucians](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosicrucian) and the [various](http://oto-usa.org/egc.html) [modern](http://www.johannite.org/) [Ecclesia](http://www.gnosticsanctuary.org/) [Gnostica](http://www.gnosis.org/eghome.htm). [Jacques de Molay](http://www.hermetic.com/sabazius/demolay.htm), leader of the Templars and among those killed that night lends his name to the youth group of English Freemasons, [the de Molays](http://www.demolay.org/history/facts/onehundred.shtml).

>Remember them O Lord, in Thy kingdom, Thy faithful servants Jacques de Molay, Guy de Auvergne, and all the glorious martyrs of the Order of the Templars, who have shone as brilliant lights of the eternal Gnosis in their days. Thou who art ever the comforter of the oppressed and the repose of those who suffer for the sake of the truth, grant them peace, refreshment, glory and the splendour of Thy Gnosis. Grant that we, following the example of Thy Holy Martyrs, may with them bear witness to the Gnosis of Love, Liberty and Light forever. Not to us, not to us O Lord, but to Thy name be the Glory; now and for evermore. – [Collect for the day](http://www.gnosis.org/ecclesia/lect159.htm)

I’d actually forgotten it was Holy Templars. Me man and I were out shopping and stopped at the DVD place to pick up something to watch and “by coinicidence” decided to pick up[ the Da Vinci Code](http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0382625/), agreeing it would be trash but we both had been wanting to see it. We get to the part about the slaughter of the [Templars](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knights_Templar_in_England) and… well let’s just say I might have had a more affectively interesting time in the film than many film goers.

Gnosis prevails.

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