Sunday, February 06, 2005

To betray the Bread and Salt

The Web Migration project at work is ahead of schedule and is really being a turn-on for the left lobe of The Wombat’s brain. It has been ages since something at work has really reached out and grabbed my interest. Part of why I like this project is that it is coming together so well - better than I had hoped, and better than what I told the boss to expect. On Friday it want live for Alpha testing. Most of the HTML conversion worked as planned, and it looks sweet as hell. There is still some work to do on it, if fact there is a lot of work to do on it, but so far the conversion program has things over 80% of the way to where I want them. If I wanted to, I could take support live on it within another week. But then the bosses would expect that kind of action all the time. So I’m going to stick with the February 28 date and get it as pretty as I can before that. At least this way I don’t run the risk of being late, it will look like a good job, and I get time to do the shit I know I need to (but the bosses never see as important).

There is other news at work that isn’t really good in itself, but has nice timing. We are all moving to a common review date in April and I need to do the whole PMF process again, even though I did it just last November. It is a pain in the ass and I never enjoy it, but this time it will come right on the heels of my completing the Web Migration. Even better, we may be integrating the web search into Vision (our call logging software) and I have already figured out how to enable importing the solution from the Knowledge Base entry into the Case (call log) in Vision. I am seriously thinking this might justify having Denos reclassify my designation so I get paid more.

I was thinking a few days ago about my decision not to write too much about my Minerval, and especially about the content of the ritual itself. I used to look at stuff like this as being no big deal, laughing at the seriousness of the Occult Initiation thing. I laughed (or at least scratched my head) at the way people take it all so seriously and pretend it is all so secret (and that there is something to be had from playing the secrecy game). But something happened after my own Minerval. I think I am beginning to understand. The fact is that the ritual was no big deal, at least when taken from my old position described above. But in the study materials I got from my sponsor a few weeks ago there was mention of the fact that you get more from it if you treat initiation with respect, as if it really does mean something. Expectation forms reality.

Before the ritual, I had trolled the internet looking for the text of the ritual, but didn’t find it. The O.T.O. must do a good job of chasing down the copies posted on the web and getting people to take them down. Either that or there just isn’t much interest in the topic. Then about a week ago I was looking for instructions on making a Tau robe for my first degree (something that is surprisingly scarce) and stumbled on a file claiming to have the texts of all the O.T.O. rituals. So I downloaded it and took a look. The table of contents listed them all, right up through the degrees that a schmuck like I could ever dream of. As The Wombat sat there looking at the screen, something happened in his fuzzy little psyche. First he had to see if it was the real thing, so he ventured into the text of the Minerval ritual. It was the real deal. Now the dilemma had teeth. On the one hand I could just read the scripts and it would be no big deal (this coming from the pre-Minerval Andy). On the other hand, it would be cheating. To look at the rituals, to learn the secrets he had not yet earned, would be to betray the bread and salt. So I made my choice. I printed up the Minerval as a study aid, then carefully closed the file and vowed not to look at it again.

I suppose printing up the Minerval was hedging, but my initiator hasn’t been available for questioning. G. has also been a bit scarce. So I’ll use this as a resource until I can dredge up a teacher or two. Another reason for not looking at the other rituals is that I know how initiation is supposed to work and what it is supposed to do. If you go into it armed with the script, it is all lost on you. I don’t want to do this to myself. I want to get the full bang for my buck and let the rituals work with me as designed.

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