The Gorean Compass is a class given every Thursday by Master Gorm Runo. Classes are held at the Gorean Campus and are given at noon and 6pm SLT. All are encouraged to come and join in the amazing discussions.
Class Given February 8, 2018
Tal and greetings,
I would like to start my talk today by telling a story from my days back on Earth.
At the time, I had three children, ranging in age from 8-12 years old, and had decided it would be good for them to learn a bit about camping and roughing it out in nature.
This was before the time every eight year old had a cell phone, and every 12 year old spent half their day playing video games, but already the beginnings of this period of mindless entertainment and distraction were bothering me. A camping trip seemed to be a good way to get back in touch with nature and toughen the kids up as well as offering an alternative to Mario and Final Fantasy.
The first camping trip was an eye opener. I ended up renting a small trailer to carry the vast amount of gear, boxes of food and snacks, radios, small TV’s , electric blankets, toys, and games, and make-up and changes of clothes. (Mom and two of the kids were females, so of course, they needed a lot of clothing options).
It was also necessary to find a campsite situated close to a parking spot, and not too far from the showers and bathrooms, and of course, with an electrical outlet.
Even parked close to the site, I spent most of the camping trip hauling suitcases, coolers, and electronic devices from the trailer to the camp.
But, I was ready for the second trip. I established a rule. When we were ready to leave, I parked the car, with no trailer, out on the street rather than in the driveway, and we piled all our gear on the front porch. And when we were ready, we picked up everything that we could carry, and lugged it across the yard, and that was all we were going to take. One trip, whatever we could carry, was all we were going to have. Everything else went back in the house.
Of course, everyone was bitching and moaning and predicting starvation and doom
The story has a happy ending. The kids learned the lessons I wanted them to learn. Our camping trips become high adventures, and we sought out the roughest and most primitive places, and learned about dehydrated meals and light weight backpacks, and a host of other coping techniques.
This memory was on my mind this week as I prepared this class. The image of my kids trying to experience the rigors of camping surrounded by luxury and electronic devices reminded me of all of us trying to recreate John Norman’s Gor on a computer driven simulation like Second Life.
As we learn when we read the Gorean novels, the world of Gor had severe limitations on technology. They were not limitations caused by a backward people without much science sense. They were imposed on the population by the Priest-Kings, who monitored everyone and everything and dealt harshly with anyone violating the rules.
And since we are all well versed in the “Gorm Runo Fascination for Symbolism”, we see it clearly. The Priest Kings represent rational thought not influenced by the more animal and human emotional side.
And much of our technology on Earth has been driven by forces that are not at all rational.
Take flight for example. It was only a few years after the Wright Brothers pushed their craft off a sand dune at Kitty Hawk, that the Red Baron was shooting down other airplanes, and men were dropping bombs on the trenches from high in the sky.
Warfare and the need to kill more and more people in faster more efficient ways has driven much of our technological advances.
Our weapons are absolutely mind blowing these days, but scientific advances in areas such as the curing of disease and the more efficient production of food, although moving forward, have not kept pace with either weapons, or labor saving devices that have made our lives easier at the cost of weakening us both physically and mentally.
And we have poisoned our air, polluted our water, and reduced much of the beauty of our world to concrete.
So, thanks to the Priest Kings, that weakening did not take place on Gor. The air was cleasn, the water pure, and the people strong and self sufficient. Amazing advances took place in medicine improving both the quality of life, and increasing its length.
So, why is it hard to recreate this world in Second Life? Second Life is a miracle of modern technology and it is geared to the Earth idea that anything that goes faster has to be better.
We can teleport instantly from place to place. We can send messages instantly across great distance and right into the “minds” of the receiver. We can even fly from place to place.
One miracle of Second Life is that it is hard to pollute it and easy to clean it up. That has been a blessing, because if it were not so, I have no doubt that we Earthmen would have brought our baggage with us and Gor would be a dirty, trash cluttered, foul smelling morass of pollution.
The Lindens were not Priest Kings. They didn’t impose rational rules on us and enforce them with the Blue Flame Death. They created a playground and invited the kids to come play.
So, instead of slowly and carefully creating settlements and villages and watching them grow, we built whole cities despite the fact we didn’t have a sufficient population to fill them.
So, instead of slowing things down and learning to savor experiences, we took off with blinding speed always focused on quantity rather than quality.
So, instead of using the platform for self examination and a deeper understanding of our true natures, we created alts, changed our genders willy nilly, and made deception and dishonesty our standards.
So, instead of following John Norman’s advice about how one might forge a more meaningful and deeper and more biologically sound relationship between two people, we created a pick up culture, taking the worse elements of Earth’s “hook up” mentality to create the Gor Hub idea of one night stands and purely hedonistic one sided encounters.
We didn’t have Priest Kings to restrain us.
I am suggesting, however, that we didn’t need them. What the Gorean novels were trying to teach us was that we could rise higher, and that we weren’t little children who needed a “parent” to control us. We could be rational and we could do things right.
All of Second Life could be a children’s playground where instant gratification, selfishness, and “anything” goes is the mantra, but Second Life Gor was never going to work that way.
Just like my children were never going to learn the truth of the camping experience, or gain anything beneficial from it as long as they were sitting on a pile of suitcases in their tent playing Mario Brothers while eating Big Mac’s out of a bag, we weren’t going to be able experience Gor or gain anything beneficial from it doing it the messed up way we have been doing it for the past dozen years.
We have to be the Priest Kings here. We have to be the Priest Kings here. We have to exercise the self discipline to find ways to make our experiences here more challenging and more realistic. We might even have to use our own personal Blue Flames to separate ourselves from those who are really the “Anti-Goreans.”
This is why that story of the camping was on my mind. My kids didn’t understand why I imposed that “what you can carry” rule, and they argued long and hard against it. But, when I enforced it, the result was they become stronger. They became tougher. They became more self sufficient. They learned to seek out and appreciate the beauty that existed all around them. They were better able to cope with not having everything they wanted right when they wanted it. And more importantly, they had fun.
It is way past time, that we become the Priest Kings here. Second Life Gor should be more like that primitive camping site deep in the woods atop a lofty mountain And the more baggage we pack in the trailer before we come to visit it, the less we are going to learn of it and the less we will enjoy it. We have been running around here like spoiled kids for a dozen years now, and maybe it is time to grow up.