The Gobble-uns Will Git You

by Jake Block

“You better mind yer parents, an’ yer teachers fond an’ dear,
An’ churish them ‘at loves you, an’ dry the orphant’s tear,
An’ he’p the pore an’ needy ones ‘at clusters all about,
Er the Gobble-uns’ll git you
Ef you
— Little Orphan Annie (James Whitcomb Riley [1849 – 1916])

So once again, with this current crisis, it seems that the “Gobble-uns” have come to claim those who have “sinned,” and it doesn’t take long for some sanctimonious old windbag to thump whatever book they want to thump to bolster their case.  If someone, somewhere doesn’t obey the law of their god of choice, (insert appropriate god/goddess name here) will come forth… or send their avenging angel of demon (insert name here) to enforce their will against the wicked.  The concept is far from new, and gets brushed off and dragged out with every scary, unpleasant or gloomy, catastrophe that nature can dream up, to vex mankind.

C’mon, now, people.  We keep telling ourselves that we are better than this, and that we are modern and technologically savvy people who have no need for such superstitions.  We’re not the ancients who might sacrifice an unfortunate hunchback to stave off the naturally occurring eclipse of the moon, rather than simply waiting a maximum of two hours for the earth’s shadow to pass.  That is, until “something” threatens us on a visceral level, or that we’re not willing to stand on our own two feet and take on “man to man.”

I don’t think that our logical minds really ever contemplate the fragility of our ultimate being on any meaningful level until there is a very real existential threat to our lives and we stand on the edge of the abyss on a metaphorical sheet of black ice.  As the odds of our continued existence slip below 50:50, we begin to regress intellectually and the darkest ideas of childhood come closer to the surface in our memories and, out of desperation, we begin to grasp at straws.  We remember Elizabeth Kübler-Ross’ “five stages of dying” and in our mind, it’s like an express elevator of doom racing downward, and as we descend through denial, anger, and depression, we make a stop at “bargaining” to take a look around to delay our final descent to the bottom, and the dreaded “ACCEPTANCE.”

This is the realm of the primitive brain’s earliest human functioning, and once again, we are, like our earliest ancestors on the evolutionary scale, struggling desperately to understand what is happening in this strange world, where we are down to a fingertip grip, being the only thing that spares us our ultimate demise. We struggle to find any way, no matter how small, to dig in and edge, millimeter by millimeter back up and away from our final foray into the terrible depths of the abyss.  It’s here where those, who can make that ultimate gut check, DO, and struggle to finally raise themselves up to carry on… or they don’t.  Sometimes even the strongest and best prepared of us fail.  It’s just that simple.  Heroes sometimes fail.

Those who believe in gods and goddesses, angels and demons, Jesus and Satan as anthropomorphic beings that are somehow personally connected to them, spend their lives on this “bargaining level” of existence.  Left or right hand path are concepts with little distinction.   There simply is what “their own personal benefactor” is willing grant them, for a price, and that price is a lifetime of devotion and servitude.  Any personal Will To Power is negated when one accepts the circumstantial intervention of deities.

The strangest of dichotomies is at work in this dynamic, as those who cling to personal beings of power, claiming a “Left Hand” philosophy, deny the very existence of the analogous pantheon on the right, even as the cross-referenced equities and qualities are mirrored for both.  In this it’s easy to understand how theistic practitioners of the Left are often seen as simply “reverse Christians.”

“Belief” in anything “supernatural” is too much of a stretch for me to make, but for those who choose that branch of the path, if it works for them, the words of John Lennon seem appropriate.

“Whatever gets you through your life,
It’s all right, it’s all right.
Do it wrong, or do it right,
It’s all right, it’s all right.
Don’t need a watch to waste your time.”

It simply doesn’t work for me and others on the Left, nor is the idea of such anthropomorphism in reality, and anything other than metaphoric communing with deities isn’t a part of the Sect of the Horned God’s ethic nor ethos.  We can all find ample references for our individual and group acceptances in literature, music, legend and lore.

Consider for a moment these lyrics from The Soft Parade by The Doors…

“When I was back there in seminary school, 
There was a person there 
Who put forth the proposition 
That you can petition the Lord with prayer. 
Petition the lord with prayer. 
Petition the lord with prayer.

You cannot petition the lord with prayer! 

Can you give me sanctuary? 
I must find a place to hide, 
A place for me to hide. 

Can you find me soft asylum?
 I can’t make it anymore. 
The Man is at the door.”
— Soft Parade (Jim Morrison  [1943 – 1971])

In my conclusion, no, you cannot petition the lord with prayer, no matter by what name he or she is known to you, because these are metaphors and not the stuff of hard reality.  Most often, you’ll find that when “The Man is at the door,” or you find yourself once again standing at the abyss, calling on a metaphor to save you will be a futile effort.  You’re going to have to stand alone and fight your own fight, win, lose or draw.  Sometimes you’ll win your battle, but sometimes you will fail.  It’s all part of the journey along the Left Hand Path which, as we all eventually learn, you have to travel on your own.

“You got to walk that lonesome valley.
You got to walk it by yourself.
No body else can walk it for you.
You got to walk it by yourself.”
— The Reverend Mr. Black  (The Kingston Trio) 

The Orders of The Sect of the Horned God

The Order of Pan
The Order of Cernunnos
The Order of Prometheus
The Order of Dionysis
The Order of Shiva