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. This class was held on February 7, 2019
Tal and greetings.
There are two things that I have often used to try to explain my feelings on Gor and on the idea of slave girls. One is the pendulum and the other is the vacuum. I realize that I have used these two concepts in many discussions and debates over the years, and I wondered if they really had their origin in the books of John Norman.
The pendulum idea says that often times movements start for very just reasons. Powerful social forces begin to move to right wrongs and seek justice, and as they move, they pick up momentum like the giant swinging arm of the pendulum. However, once they reach that balanced middle ground, the momentum is too much to stop it, and it swings right on to an equally unjust, but opposite extreme.
The vacuum idea is based on the scientific principle that “nature abhors a vacuum.” It suggests to me that in any relationship there is a balance of power, and when one side abdicates their power, a power vacuum is created, and the other side will assume that power to fill it.
Both of these concepts are very clearly displayed in Outlaw of Gor when Tarl learns the story of Tharna and how it came to become a Gorean city controlled by females. Outlaw of Gor is the second book in the series and a rather short one. Tarl was returned to Earth after Tarnsman of Gor, and now has returned to Gor to find his city of Ko-ro-ba destroyed by the Priest Kings and he sets out for the Sardar to confront them. On the way, he stops in the city of Tharna.
Tharna is described as a dull, gray city, where the normal color and excitement of Gorean life is missing, and the men act more like slaves than Gorean Free men. The city is controlled by women known as the “Silver Masks” for the masks they wear to cover their faces. Tarl gets in trouble here, and ends up as a prisoner in the Mines of Tharna. He eventually escapes, and a revolt breaks out, that overthrows the Silver Masks, and restores Tharna to a more Gorean natural order.
Near the end of the book, Tarl is told the history of Tharna and how it came to be under the control of women. It was not unlike other Gorean cities at first, and women were enslaved and dominated. But, things changed. The pendulum started to swing, and a power vacuum was created. Interestingly, the change took place because the men came to care for their women. Here is how Tarl hears the story.
“Over a period of time this cruel practice fell into disuse and the women of Tharna came to be more reasonably and humanely regarded. Indeed, through their love and tenderness, they taught their captors that they, too, were worthy of respect and affection. And, of course, as the captors came gradually to care for their slaves, the desire to subjugate them became less, for few men long desire to subjugate a creature for whom they genuinely care, unless perhaps it be they fear to lose her should she be free.Yet as the status of these women became more ennobled and less clearly defined the subtle tensions of dominance and submission,. instinctual through the animal world, tended to assert themselves.The balance of mutual regard is always delicate, and statistically, it is improbable that it can long be maintained throughout an entire population.”Page 205 Outlaw of Gor
He goes on to learn that gradually, women began to gain power. They began to control more and more wealth, and most importantly, they played a large part in the education and training of the young.
“Eventually,largely via the conditioning of the young and the control of education, those superiorities which the female naturally possesses came to be enlarged on at the expense of those possessed by the male. And just as in our own world it is possible to condition entire populations to believe what is, from the standpoint of another population, incomprehensible and absurd, so in Tharna both the men and women came eventually to believe the myths and distortions advantageous to female dominance.”Page 206 Outlaw of Gor
And at the end of this, Tarl makes this observation
“Should there ever be a revolution in the ways of Tharna I would pity her women, at least at first, for they would be the object of the pent-up frustrations of generations. If the pendulum should swing in Tharna, it would swing far. Perhaps even to the scarlet rug and yellow cords.”Page 207 Outlaw of Gor
There is my vacuum and pendulum ideas in a nutshell. If men abdicate their traditional role, even if they do it out of genuine care and affection for their females, they create a power vacuum that must be filled. And it will be the women that fill it.
And if such an unnatural thing should occur, the pendulum will start to swing again back toward natural order, and will, at first, swing way to the other extreme on the pent-up frustrations of males.
This is my idea of Counter Earth, and my understanding of why Second Life Gor, and indeed, online Gor, has taken root and continues to grow and persist.
Two days ago, the President of the United States gave his State of the Union address. In the assembled Congress were a large group of female representatives dressed in nearly identical white pant suits. They sat silently and refused to applaud veterans, or economic gain, or even the saving of young girls from abuse and sex traffic. They did not respond much at all, until it was pointed out that 58% of the new jobs created had been filled by females, and that a higher number of females sat in Congress than any other time. Then, they jumped up and danced and cheered and high fived each other
I watched it, and those pages of Outlaw of Gor flashed through my mind. It would not have been any clearer to me than if those ladies had all donned Silver Masks rather than white pantsuits. That pendulum has swung dangerously toward insanity.
Women were given the vote over 100 years ago. Our society has righted most of the wrongs that held woman back, and they have more freedom and opportunity than any women in any other time or place in the history of the world. A mantra can be heard across news and social media. Men bad, women good. Men wrong, women right. Men evil, women moral. Men dishonest, women to be believed.
It is like Western culture is barreling toward a Tharna like situation, and the idea of there being a War of women is a joke. There is a war being waged against Men, and manhood, and masculinity, and it grows worse and worse every passing day.
It is true that there is a lot that is unfair here in our Gorean world. We are trying to recreate a more natural dynamic, but we are doing it with flawed men. There are going to be some rough spots because of that fact. The men that are assuming the roles of leadership in our Gorean world have to shake off the conditioning and pressure of a society that has made a mockery out of the very characteristics that are needed to assume leadership and exercise natural dominance. Remember, none of us were born on Gor, and none of us breathed in the “air of Mastery” with every breath since we were children, as did the men in the fictional novels.
But, this is an explanation for our failure and not an excuse. We have to be twice as strong, and twice as strict to swing the pendulum from weakness and shame, to strength and pride.
I understand this well. You see, I care for the girls. I think I may care for them, and have affection for them more than most. I am a romantic, and I love the idea of love. I think the girls that I have met in my time in Gor are exceptional and beautiful creatures, and I feel strong genetic instincts to protect them and to pamper them.
Yet, I also think that if I abdicate my Manhood or allow my affection to create weakness, I am failing these girls completely. We live in a world of vacuums being filled and pendulums swinging wildly, and more than ever we need a compass to guide us through the chaos. As the real world moves more and more to insanity, we need to move more and more toward rationality. As the real world moves more and more toward softness and weakness, we must become more hard and strong.
We need to keep in mind one more important thing. If, indeed, there is a war on men being waged on Earth, and we are here, even the role players, to swing a pendulum in the opposite direction, the females that are here with us, are not the enemy either. They are as much victims of the insanity as we are, and are on our side.
Lara, the former Tatrix of Tharna, tells Tarl of her dream, and every time I read it, I think how lucky and honored and content I would be, if a female slave were to ever say this about me.
“In his arms I learned what Tharna could not teach. In his arms I learned to share the flaming splendor of his passion. In his arms I learned mountains and flowers and the cry of wild tarns and the touch of a larl’s claw. For the first time in my life, my senses were kindled–for the first time I could feel the movement of clothing upon my body, for the first time I noticed how an eye opens and what, truly, is the feel of a hand’s touch–and I knew then that I was no more nor less than he or any other living creature, and I loved him.”Page 203 Outlaw of Gor