Gatewalking in the Necronomicon: Is It Authentic?, Part 4

In our three part essay, we looked at evidence that suggests that gatewalking might not be an authentic Sumerian ritual taken from Wayne Horowitz’s Mesopotamian Cosmic Geography. What has Warlock said in response?

That is a good book.

Hey, that was easy.

Warlock goes on to quote some passages indicating that Horowitz is open to the possibility of a Sumerian cosmos with seven heavens.  I think it’s important to view this in the entire structure of the book, where he covers alternate readings of those passages and a number of more documented cosmological schemes that look nothing like Simon’s schema. My point still stands: Horowitz’s book does not support the historical basis of the cosmos as outlined in the Simon book.

That’s not all, though.

We should also keep in mind that Dan Harms using “one” resource does not substantiate any hard evidence that GateWalking is not authentic. Especially when that resource is Dr. Wayne Horowitz is a Lecturer in the Rothberg School for Overseas Students and the Department of Assyriology at the Hebrew University. I guess it is safe to say that his religious views will in no way over shadow his report and uncertainty in his approach, which is clearly evident in his book. This is a good source of information: Hebrew University is the same Institute that had made the following headlines… This is the same University that Wayne Horowitz gets his degree from? I am happy that you believe that your research has improved.

The part omitted included links to stories stating that one Hebrew University professor has been accused of serious crimes, that another said something demeaning about Arabs, and that the student union won’t allow outside Arabs to have memberships.

Of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with the content of Professor Horowitz’s book. It’s a smear, the same as the one he tried to use against Lovecraft, only this one is completely speculative regarding Dr. Horowitz”s beliefs and political sympathies.  I don’t know the man myself, but this is ridiculous.

At this point, Warlock has been confronted with a recent book by a scholar who can read cuneiform and is well-read on the topic.  What is his response?  He does not engage with the book’s arguments, or seek out other works on the topic.

Instead, if he can simply conclude that the person is associated with those who have undesirable views, or is anti-Semitic, or lived in an area where witchcraft trials occurred, he can completely dismiss them as unreliable.  Having ensured that he can safely ignore this information, he can get back to more reliable sources such as 19th century books and community college student websites.  (I have nothing against that site owner, but really now!)

I, however, will not condemn Warlock or his fellow gatewalkers for this.  I am curious, however, as to why they continue to endorse a book that makes use of an author who thought Sumer was built by Aryans as its chief linguistic source.  After all, by their own logic, might that not indicate that the work is unreliable?

Published in: on March 13, 2009 at 8:03 pm  Comments (17)  

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  1. Interesting post Mister Dan Harms. I see that some of my statements have been misunderstood. I will definitely clarify my statements for you and the other one Dan Clore shortly. In the meantime, if you want to understand Simon’s use of the term Aryan, read my post on the Arra Sign. Don’t worry Harms I will clarify the origins of the Simon Necronomico Tradition in my next post.just make sure Dan Clore and yourself are ready to be exposed. 🙂

  2. Simon’s views on the topic aren’t the point. If the membership policies of Wayne Horowitz’s campus student union are relevant to his work, than Simon’s use of Aryan supremacist literature for his book are even more relevant. In fact, Simon bypassed a few pre-existing Sumerian dictionaries to use Waddell’s work, which would seem to mean he knowingly selected it.

    Besides, your etymologies in your ARRA article hardly justify Simon – they also come straight out of Waddell. Have you looked at an actual Sumerian dictionary?

  3. I have a few Sumerian dictionarys and I have studied the Assyrian language. I am more than qualified to give you the well-needed reply to this post shortly.

  4. As an, albeit, novice student of Germanic languages, I’m acutely aware of the rigorous and exacting methodologies of linguistics and philology – and maybe more importantly, how vitaly important it is to be referencing the most current and truly academic literature.

    So, out of curiosity, who are the leading scholars in comparative semitic linguistics? How much research has been done on Assyrian-Babylonian and are there clear distinctions for the lay-student to differentiate between that and Syriac-Aramaic? And what are the vital works for study? Are these works easily available outside of academia?

    Maybe most importantly, what are the differences between the attitudes of the Linguists and the Philologists? What are the current ‘fashions’ of belief within these camps and how do they affect reconstructive research of ancient practices? And for putting it all into context of magico-religious studies, are there ‘speculative’ and ‘skeptical’ branches the same way there is in the Indo-European and Germanic schools?

  5. I will answer your questions in my next blog, as well as those of Dan Clore & Harms, however, one thing that you should ask yourself, is how much value does an outsider’s opinion have over the people who are being studied. This is said in no way to devalue the work of scholars, doe that work is very vital in relyinga the customs and traditions of a legendary civilization or people. However, the scholars work is not to be place in opinion over the same people who are the subject of the study. It’s like an African medicine man neing ridiculed by scholars who have written about his culture but who are not a part of it. Nor did they include the Medicine Man in their thesis. Dan Harms & Dan Clore have written a thesis trying to get to the root and meaning of the Necronomicon Tradition and have never held an honest interview with a Priest or Priestess of this Tradition. Er as s worker in this culture the Necronomicon Tradition existed centuries before the Simon Necronomicon was ever in print and I will discuss this shortly. Thank you for your comments I will get back to you soon. I am in travel. Be well

  6. 1) I was asking about linguistics and philology, not anthropology.

    2) Anthopology, as a discipline, hasn’t been prone to the attitudes you attribute to scholars for a number of decades.

    3) The problems with studying the ontology of a culture and the phenomena of their beliefs is different than the problems involved in studying a sub-(oc-)culture within modern American culture – especially when the teachings of that tradition are the product of a small number of books, by one editor/author as opposed to a true tradition that arises organically from a cultural base.

    3) Dan Harms’ thesis (in both his blog and The Necronomicon Files) is different than what you’re stating and has far more to do with the authorship and cultural validity of the source document than the current practices of people who use that document.

    4) Proofreading for clarity is a virtue.

  7. I am well aware of what you are asking. What makes you think that the practices or culture of Ancient Sumerians ever ceased? That’s the part of the story that I am talking about. I am not an outsider. You are “right” proofreading is a virtue, and like I said I am in travel. Ne Well

  8. To follow Niflungr’s excellent points:

    You’re not an ancient Sumerian.

    I really don’t begrudge anyone who finds something meaningful in a belief system. Nonetheless, if a person makes claims that he or she is practicing a reconstructed belief from another period, he or she should be able to back up those claims, be familiar with the recent scholarship in that topic, and be willing to adapt their practice based on new knowledge. When confronted with a new possibility, it need not be accepted, but it would be taken into consideration.

    To be honest, I’m not seeing this from the Gatewalkers in general. They seem more inclined to take dated books, random web pages, and Simon’s word – save for GATES, which is often passed over in silence – over more recent sources on the topic. Information that don’t fit into their paradigm is quickly dismissed due to the author’s institution/home place/attitudes, or just because I’m the one saying it.

    I do understand the argument you’re making, but having spiritual experiences on a path that someone states is authentic Mesopotamian doesn’t mean that you have special insight into Mesopotamian beliefs, or that your beliefs should be privileged over others. People have had spiritual experiences reflecting all manner of paradigms over time – hell, even Lovecraft’s work has been used as a basis of magical practice. The question is whether those conclusions remain valid as more discoveries are made, or if they can anticipate discoveries made thereafter.

  9. I actually enjoy our dialogue Harms and I have learned a few things of value from our discussions, some of which I will post shortly, though Ism not aware if you may have picked up on a few things. I have no indifference with the sources that you have quoted. I think that there work is of great value. I am just saying that while these works are extremely important, many of these scholars & etc can blind side their work based upon their background even though some of their information is very good. All I’m saying to you Harms is that regardless if someone is well educated, or a scholar, whether modern or from a century ago, just because they write a thesis doesn’t mean that it should be believed on face value. I will give you an example of what I am talking about. Years ago an associate of mine, once he knew I was into Sumerian research suggested to me that I should read the book Divine Encounters by Sitchin. So I read all about the UFOs, the Anunnaki creating humans and etc. Then in the final chapter Sitchin tries to fit Yahweh of Jehovah in as being above the Sumerian Pantheon, and of course Sitchin is Jewish. However, his conclusion to put Yahweh above even Anu was way inaccurate. Yet I am sure his thesis was influenced by his Jewish faith. Now Sitchin is somewhat controversial, but is educated and revered by several New Age groups, and some other well educated can also fall into the same deal, and it may not be intentionally but it happens due to humaness. So I am just suggesting that scholars also need to be scrutinised with the degree of fevor that you have Simon. I am not claiming to be an Ancient Sumerian, but this still doesn’t mean that the Tradition was ever lost. Have you ever looked into the Yoruba pantheon in comparison to the Gods of Sumer? Make a comparison between Yemaya and Tiamat? Or Obatala and Anu..just even a brief look on Wikipedia. Also look at the Seven African Powers and the Seven Gate Gods in the Simon Necronomicon. Maybe the Sumerian culture doesn’t have to be reconstructed. Maybe its just called by a different name. Just something to look at. That’s all. However, it was one of your comments the other day that I began to discover this. I agree that there are GateWalker who should be more studious. Yet this is true of many who call themselves occultist. It is not Simon that GateWalkers revere, but what is gained by developing a relationship with ancient energies. It is a template to a greater tradition

  10. Another thing that I would like to point is that there are many religions today that are accepted as being authentic, but do not reflect the practices that were recorded in these same religions today. Some Muslims may emphasise the Hadith more the Qu’ran. Yet despite Islam with its many sects are still accepted as Islam. There are certain practices that are found in the Ancient Jewish Tradition that aren’t practiced today, like sacrifice. So there are things that the GateWalker does that maybe somewhat different than the Ancient Sumerian tradition

  11. I was cleaning out some of my bookshelves last night and came across “Pop Culture Magick” by Talyor Ellwood (quickly finding its way into the Good Will bag) which made me think about the growing number of practitioners who knowingly engage in magico-religious activities based upon fiction, without having any problem acknowledging it as such. The seeming ‘paradox’ of having valid experiences based upon something an individual author created doesn’t bother them – in fact in some cases it seems to be a freeing agent. Hell, the Temple of Set was paving the way for this type of practice years before it became the trendy thing to do (no, I’m not a Setian, nor do I play one on T.V.).

    Then there is that type of Wiccan who sticks their finger in their ears (while loudly saying “LALALALALALALA I can’t HEAR you!”) when people show pretty damn conclusive proof of the origins of Gardner’s creation, his influence from Crowley, etc. Their emotional need for an ancient ‘tradition’ completely overrides their need to see through illusions and delusions. So much for “Know Thyself.”

    It seems that there is a similar thing going on with the Gatewalkers.

    Maybe this is a Modernity vs. Post-Modernity conflict. Where without a lineage to ‘evolve’ from (Frazierian reference) there is no validity Vs. If it works it don’t matter where it came from and my power isn’t threatened by the fact that a Japanese Anime series is my source material.

    Maybe it has to do with educational experience (giving Sitchin’s works as examples of scholarly and/or academic works just shows that one has probably not encountered the type of academic text being referenced or the basic level of methodology explanation, source citing, controversy acknowledging which is necessary for publication – which means we’re pointlessly arguing apples and oranges).

    Or maybe it has to do more with the Cthulhoid entities of insecurity and doubt that wake in the subconscious realms of R’lyeh when the Stars of objective facts suddenly become right.

    Apologies to Dan for hijacking his blog and treating it like a Bulletin Board.

  12. I think you have the GateWalkers quite wrong, and it would be useful to re-read my cooments. I am not a fan of Sitchin and all the gateWalkers i know don’t give him much regard. However, some circless in the new Age Community do give him regard. So I used it as an example. Yet there is some information that he has stated that is not way off the base. However, there is a lineage in GateWalking, and it goes beyond your assumptions. I should also say that the Necronomicon Tradition is not limited to the Simon Necronomicon. its key text is the Emerald Tablets, Tao Te Ching, The Qu’ran, Book of Enoch, The Bible. There are also a number of other texts by Crowley and Gurdjeiff. It is also required that one gains certification in astrology, which is very important aspect of our Tradition. One must also stay abreast with new endeavors in the feild of science as well.

    I am not aware of what you mean by fiction, since there are many fictional stories in many tradition, such as Christianity and etc. Plus I have yet to hear of a Grimoire that is based on fact. Fiction has been used since ancient times to relate magickal and metaphysical truths and this was also a practice of the Ancient Sumerians. Was the Enuma Elish, or Inanna’s Descent factual stories. Therefore, the idea behind such parable is reserved for those who know the Greater Mysteries, and this is something that a scholars is not going to tell you. These are things that must be learned through your path of inititation. So you can go ahead and reveiw that massive collection of logical updates about Ancient Mesopotamia, which are of great value. However, if you are not initiated into the Tradition, you are just choosing one form of fiction above another.

    Be Well my friend.

    P.S. I think Dan Harms is okay with your comments. I am sure he will appreciate your acknowledgement 🙂

  13. Wow, I think MY IQ dropped a Good 10 Points after reading that last post!!!

  14. To answer Warlock’s question waaaay back about bias – it’s fine to look into and read for the bias of the author. You’re missing two important points. First, views should not be attributed to an author based on mere membership in an ethnicity or group. Second, the same analysis should be performed on every work read and the same standards used (e.g., if Lovecraft as an anti-Semite is unreliable, then Crowley as an anti-Semite is unreliable.)

  15. That was never a question of mines Harms. i was just trying to illustrate a point. Everyone has their own issues to face, yet there work is of great value in the communities that hey serve. I have stated numerous times before that Lovecraft has made a very valuable contribution to the art and magickal communities with his works, as well as, Crowley. You are missing the point. All I am saying is that if you are trying to understand the GateWalking rituals in the Simon Necronomicon, you would need to look at more than one source, since people may just be influenced by prejudice, or whatever. Now if you can get the same result through other sources then you are on to something. However, if you just quote Horowitz, and not inject other scholarly sources, then you are pursuing the path of faith not science. You are also putting too much power into a person’s thesis. I read the book you were referring to and it is very hypothetical to say the least. Regardless of Crowley’s views towards certain groups of people or maybe his own prejudices, at least I can compare Crowley’s works with other Occultists like Eliphas Levi, and etc, in order to separate the wheat from the chaff. If you need to investigate GateWalking further< I have provided many references in my bolg, not just one scholar who graduated from a University that doesn’t allow people form the area where these ancient ruins are, such as the Arabs, to even join the University. Now I could see if that was in the 50’s or 60’s because that’s where America was at then, but in the past ten years. Evidently this Hebrew university already has a biased perception of the world, if it is shutting its doors to people based on their ethnic background, but the education is good there. That’s a catch 22! It’s time to move forward with the discussion and come up with some more references. If not then stop challenging the Authenticity of the Simon Necronomicon GateWalking Tradition and focus on your own

    Be Well

    Warlock Asylum R.M.

  16. […] buy it.  For any readers who are concerned as to whether Davies’ credentials measure up to their high standards, I can assure you that the membership policies of his college’s student union are beyond […]

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