Saturday, July 02, 2016

On Scarlet Imprint and Disagreements between People

I really have to ask, what the hell is wrong with people?

I disagreed with some things one author at Scarlet Imprint said in one piece that was presented in one place without, when I read it, any other context.

Yesterday I get informed that people are taking that one thing and turning it into some kind of fucking crusade against the entire corpus of their work. People are bashing all the authors, all the books, everything they've done.

Look, grow the fuck up people. Nicholaj Frisvold did some amazing work, and he's getting panned? Seriously? What's next, Gordon White? Jake Stratton-Kent? Scarlet Imprint has been a vehicle for many of this generation's best writers to present information to the community that has changed our lives, and how we understand and work with magic itself. They are a huge resource, and the occult community owes Scarlet Imprint a huge debt for the positive impact they have made on our understanding of magic.

Yet some people have lost their entire sense of proportion.

There was a time when you could call someone on bullshit and not have the entire world come crashing down on people's head. You could have civil discourse. You could criticize one work without criticizing the people who wrote it, and having that get turned into the demonization of everyone they ever worked with.

But those days are apparently gone.

I don't like *the way* Peter Grey made his points in the Forging of the Body of the Witch presentation. I don't agree with some conclusions he reached in Lucifer Princeps, and I don't agree with some things he said in Red Goddess, either, I experience Babalon a lot differently.

That doesn't mean the man is shit, his work is shit, his partner is shit, the entirety of everything he's done is shit. Christ, we're writers, we make things to read, and like any craftsperson, some people will like our work, others won't.

But if you don't like something, don't like the thing. Don't try to ruin it for everyone else. In the original critique of the single piece I made, I closed the piece with respect to the people who get something out of that approach on purpose. People get to do what they want to with their bodies, their spiritual path, and their lives. That was entirely my problem with *some* of the things he was saying.

And when you read it with the "sister pieces" of his presentation written and presented by Alkistis Dimech, you realize that they aren't intentionally saying things to oppress women, their intent is the same as every other writing magician I know, to free people from the traps of their own minds so they can reclaim their personal power.

The worst thing I can say about Peter Grey is that in one piece that I've read, I found his choice of words and the implications of those words disturbing because he sounds like too many of the voices people hear growing up that tell them they aren't good enough, and they aren't good enough because of their bodies.

It's ok for me not to like what he wrote there, and it's ok for me to like other things he does, and it's important to be able to have civil discourse about things that you disagree with.

I offered Scarlet Imprint a chance to talk to me about all this stuff, and they said they had no interest in it. Then they accused me of deliberately misinterpreting things because I have previously expressed disagreements with Peter Grey. I think that's ridiculous, but I understand, when you see the shit people are doing on social media over this. They're angry and upset, and it's apparently all my fault, but whatever.

They suggested I needed to make a retraction and apologize, because of what other people have turned this into. I disagree. My critique of his presentation stands. There are probably holes in my critique that could be filled with a conversation, but that isn't going to happen.

But people need to back off on attacking Peter, Alkistis, and the authors of Scarlet Imprint. There is no need for a witch hunt and wild accusations. If you don't like his approach, don't use it. If you do like it, and it works for you, go for it.

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.