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Author Topic: Egalitarian magical organizations?  (Read 4744 times)

Jabberwocky

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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #15 on: July 02, 2013, 05:51:21 pm »
Quote from: Aett of Cups;114346

 If you don't mind, I'd like to share your questions with the group I've been discussing.


That's absolutely fine.

Quote
I also appreciate your point of view about Quakerism.  I know very little about it.  I'd like to know if you have any suggested reading on the basic principles of the group.


Note that this is very much liberal Quakerism (which is heavily dominant in UK Quakerism), but I'd start with reading the Quakers in their own words.  Try Quaker Faith & Practice  and Advices and Queries for a good overview.  If you want an indepth look at Quaker decision making, I've been hearing very good things about God and Decision Making by Jane Mace, though I haven't read it myself yet.  It only came out last year so it'll be fully reflective of modern Quaker thinking.

Quote
I'd be even more interested in knowing where I could get a good outline on the principles and history of Shakerism, if you would happen to know, because I'm wanting to re-read a favorite novel with Shaker references (A Maggot by John Fowles) soon.


I'm afraid I know almost nothing about the Shakers, apart from that their founder was originally a Quaker.  Mainly what I know about historically  in terms of these kind of groups is centered round the English Civil War.  So the Shakers are about a century too late for me!  While they do spring out of that tradition of English Dissenters, things were obviously very different by their time.
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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #16 on: July 02, 2013, 05:54:48 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;114357
I do not believe I have ever encountered a group or event that billed itself as "egalitarian" that actually was.

Sadly, I have to agree. I've never seen a group that claimed to be "egalitarian" actually live up to the billing, except for a couple of groups that never did anything but talk. As no decisions ever had to be made nor any action taken, but all opinions were heard, I suppose these groups were actually "egalitarian", but not in any sense I'd consider meaningful.

The best example I can thing of of a group that claimed to be "egalitarian" but wasn't was a (non-pagan) group I was in many years ago which claimed all decisions were made by consensus when in reality all decisions were made by me. I was the only person in the group willing to actually do any work, so the consensus was that X be done if was was willing to do it and the consensus was that X not be done if I was not willing to do it. The weird thing was that everyone in the group except for myself seemed to truly believe that all decisions were made by consensus.
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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #17 on: July 02, 2013, 07:24:48 pm »
Quote from: Jabberwocky;114395

I'm afraid I know almost nothing about the Shakers, apart from that their founder was originally a Quaker.  Mainly what I know about historically  in terms of these kind of groups is centered round the English Civil War.  So the Shakers are about a century too late for me!  While they do spring out of that tradition of English Dissenters, things were obviously very different by their time.

 
I meant to comment on this one - I live about an hour from the last remaining Shaker community (which reminds me, I keep meaning to try and make it down for one of their Sunday meetings sometime this summer, because they do them in a 1790s building with music that has never ever been written down.)

Wikipedia actually has a fairly decent rundown on academic works, other material, and links to other resources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shakers - Sabbathday Lake is the last surviving community, both Hancock Village and Canterbury Village are now sizeable museums/learning spaces, and both have pretty thorough websites. (I've been to Hancock multiple times and want to go to Canterbury sometime.)

I'll note that every tour I've been on at Hancock, and the one at Sabbathday Lake made it *very* clear that their communities had ups and downs, and a lot of how they survived as a community was having very specific outlets for people who were just fed up with dealing with the process of living in community. (Sabbathday Lake, f'ex, had a series of cottages where people could live on their own for a while if they just needed a break, as well as the very common rotation of roles.)
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Aett of Cups

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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #18 on: July 05, 2013, 01:21:09 am »
Quote from: Jenett;114351
I work in a heirarchical tradition.

Then I'd like to be extremely clear that I'm not criticizing you or your tradition.  Even if I say something like, 'I think hierarchies are bad for our society,' it doesn't mean that you are bad people or are trying to harm anyone.  It just means that I find hierarchical structures counter-productive and hope you'll consider whether or not it's best for you to support them.

Quote from: Jenett;114351
But one of the things that I think is incumbent on a leader in that kind of tradition is that a) they are capable of doing all the pieces required for ritual (which includes the stuff like the dishes, or setting up chairs) and b) that they do so often enough to remember what's annoying about it or look at how to make the process better/easier for everyone.

That said, people's time is not infinite. Nor is their energy.

If you have ten people in a room, and all of them could do the dishes or set out chairs, but only some of them can do the final preparations for the ritual, or explain all the necessary things to a guest or help provide appropriate pastoral counselling to someone in need of it, or whatever, then it is often a better use of time for the people who can't do those things to do things like setting out chairs.

This is something where I actually think there's a much larger gap between a group of 3-6 and a group of 9-12ish than many people realise: somewhere between 6 and 9 people, you shift from 'small enough to all have one conversation while you're getting ready' to 'enough people that you're in different rooms doing different tasks and/or the chances that at least one person desperately needs to talk about something in their lives go up a lot.' - both of which change the dynamics a bunch.

It's also obviously something where 'we have a group of 5 people of roughly equivalent knowledge/experience' is *vastly* different from 'we have 2 people with extensive experience and 2 people who are brand new to Paganism and 2 people somewhere in the middle' or whatever. The best egalitarian group experiences I've had have been people of roughly similar experience and goals - but many of the places I've seen it have broken down entirely when they've had to add someone new to the topic. Even if that someone is intelligent and hard-working and willing to learn, there's a lot of ground to cover to get them up to speed with everyone else.

(I am spending a massive amount of my time the past five and next two years in a project that is largely consensus based with a bit of formal leadership when absolutely necessary: I've been having a lot of conversations with people who joined the project in the last year about *how much* background and 'how this works' stuff they're having to pick up on the fly, and how that's working for them - and that's with everyone being willing to explain as we spot stuff.)

And there's also physical realities: I have chronic medical foo that means that some tasks take more out of me than others: if I want to be able to enjoy ritual or to run it, there are some things I should probably not be doing while we prep for ritual that same day.

In a situation where everyone is expected to chip in on everything, that can be really hard for me, and leave me less than functional for days afterwards. In a situation where tasks are assigned in advance, and where I know which things I'm primarily responsible for (and especially if those things don't change ritual to ritual very often, so I can optimise how I prepare for them over time), I have a much easier time and can do much more to support the work of the group overall.

I do know of groups that manage to do other approaches, but they have been few and far between, or they have not lasted very long.

I will say that my *actual* preference for group management is something I refer to as haptocracy (I coined the word) which comes from the Greek 'to work' - which is to say that the person doing the work to make something happen in a group gets more say about how it happens (within the basic guidelines that the group sets up as shared goals.)

Which is to say, if I am HPS, and I am running the ritual, I get to decide the best way for me to plan that ritual, and the best way to prepare for it, and the best way to make it happen. As I ask other people to participate, they get to decide the ways they want to - but the person who spends 10 minutes discussing it before we get together to do it is going to have less say how we're doing the thing than the person who's spent hours putting it together.

The reason I like this is that it gives a model for "Ok, you want to do something different? Step up and do the work." And it also helps me (at least) let go of some things, once I've specified the necessary end result. (For example, so long as the altar is set at the needed time, and it's done with reverence, I don't care which order things go on, or how long it takes.)

Now there *are* limits - in my tradition, there are specific ritual activities and roles that are limited to specific points in training, and that are done that way for reasons of consistency, safety, and well-being of everyone in circle (because some of them, if they're done badly, can be bad for the person doing them, or for other people in the ritual.) But outside of those specifics, I've run quite a few rituals where people have taken on ritual tasks or planning tasks or teaching tasks or whatever, that would normally be outside their level of expectation, and they've gone well.

There is also another layer in structure. One of the things I've found about overt structure is that you will, in fact, get people saying "I am good with committing to this much work/responsibility/whatever, but I do not want to take more on." (Often for really good reasons: health limits, other things in their life, their recognition that they need to sort out X or learn more Y before they can make that next step.)

In an egalitarian structure - and particularly one where there's pressure (as there is in some egalitarian structures for everyone to chip in with everything), this can become increasingly uncomfortable for them over time. (Again, been there, seen it, seen the group dynamics issues.)

That rather misses the point. (And incidentally, pay is not the massive dividing factor - I work for a public university, so a lot of our pay data is somewhat public. There are distinctions between salaried and hourly (notably how we handle scheduling issues)). But my point was actually that they *do not affect* who steps up for committee work besides the few mandatory committees: people at all three effective bands of pay do so, and do awesome stuff.

That said, we also *do* have different job descriptions, and there are reasons for that: I have chosen over time to build some sets of skills over others (technology, in my case), or I've certainly got the training and education to catalogue books, but I know that it is not a thing I really want to do all day (like one of my co-workers does), and we are both happier doing the things we're doing. That's why we have the jobs we have and not different jobs.

I want, in short, the same opportunity to participate and *not* participate in my religious life: the chance to say "This thing, I would like to do more" and "This thing, can I not do it?" In a setting where all roles are shared around equally, I don't get to do that. Which is a problem for me, and particularly on the "not the thing I want to do" side.

[...]

But I have also seen - and as you might have guessed - been personally far more hurt by supposedly egalitarian settings that turned out to be anything but. (those stories I told in my previous post.)

Which is, in fact, why I am deeply cautious about them, and why - while I know they can sometimes work - I'm very wary of the places they can fail very badly very quickly. (In particular, I think there's a fair bit of conversation in the larger Pagan community about bad leadership in hierarchical settings: there can always be more, but it's definitely out there. I see much less discussion of issues in other kinds of group settings, and that's problematic too.)

Quote from: Darkhawk;114357
I suspect that this is something that also, to an extent, depends on the structural intent of the group.  If it's something where there is a learning curve involved, where people gain knowledge or skill along the way, where there are distinct points of achievement, then that's a fundamentally different fundamental underlying structure than something where people gather in a more free form or participatory manner.

If I am training with a group, I expect some level of hierarchy, because, frankly, I am coming in as a petitioner in an explicitly stated state of ignorance, and there will be people who can teach me what I came there for and there are people who can't.

If I am celebrating with a group, I still expect some level of hierarchy is likely, because someone is deciding on the parameters of the celebration, whether any Powers are invited and which ones, what the ritual format is, and so on.  (There are times when this hierarchy is mostly subsumed into the Assumed Format Of Ritual Paganism, and thus that nobody actually thinks through ritual formats because Everyone Does Public Access Wicca or whatever.)

At the level of stuff like my ritual circle, I expect a mix of hierarchy and non-hierarchy.  We have few enough people and little enough established praxis that our gatherings are pretty wide open for contributions from all members.  (Our most recent gathering was significantly driven by the member who would probably consider himself to have the least to contribute, because he felt it was important to mark that particular day.)  When it comes to contributions to ritual work and structure, it's people who have experience and knowledge who have the most say over what happens, because it's those people who have ideas about things to do and how to do them.
 
I do not believe I have ever encountered a group or event that billed itself as "egalitarian" that actually was.  Mostly in the form of "we will mislead you about how we deal with power" - saying there is no hierarchy while having set subsets of people who conduct rituals, decide what magical work is being done, which powers are welcome, and similar things; taking consensus as an assumption rather than orienting towards actively sought consent (a good example is a time I was at a gathering for one subject and suddenly it was "we're doing magical working for this political cause!" where I not only was not informed about the cause and not comfortable with the change of subject, but had no knowledge of how to raise an objection or politely refrain from participation); leaving newcomers entirely at sea to learn basic social knowledge about the group (ranging from 'who has knowledge and who doesn't' through 'whose input will tend to get respected and whose will get ignored' and 'what cues do we use to indicate assent or dissent' to 'how to express an opinion in a manner that it will be heard and considered by others').

Quote from: Naomi J;114367
I have to say that, while I understand that it's rare for an egalitarian approach to succeed in magical groups, it works with my OBOD grove. I suspect a number of positive factors come into play there, including the personalities of the group members and the informal 'family' feel they've managed to cultivate. But I've only seen benefit from the non-hierarchical approach that many OBOD groves take. An example is our rotating priestly duties that means even newbies can lead ritual as soon as they're initiated members. I've learned so much through that experience. But I'm not naive enough to think it would work often. I just do believe we've* achieved it.

*Our particular grove, I mean - I certainly can't speak for OBOD as a whole, having only experienced one grove up close.

I'd like to thank all the posters on this board.  You've helped me clarify several issues.  I can discuss my thoughts (I hope) more articulately now, and I hope they will be helpful to you in turn.

Thank you for introducing the haptocracy model.  I like the general idea, but I'm not sure how it would by applied in terms of valuation of work.  I love to free-write, but I'd rather garden for two hours than copy-edit for one.  How do we decide how much of my opinion I get to express for my work?  The amount of time I put in?  The perceived effort from my point of view?  The perceived effort from the majority?  The number of calories I expend?  I think it would also be valid to say that, within many groups, the person or persons at the top actually perform less work because of their work's specialized nature (or because it's perceived as such).  I'm not saying that it might not take a lot of energy to, say, invoke a deity; I'm just saying that most folks recognize and value invocation far more than the effort of cooking all the food.  I've been to many a meeting where the ritual facilitator did nothing but raise a small amount of energy for the circle, while someone else grew, cooked, and blessed the food.  It's an example only, but it certainly happens.

I think that, for me, this general issue - and the views I've been expressing - are an extension of my social and political views.  And, although I can see that you weren't making this point, I think the library example was one of the keys to helping me understand that.

We grow up addicted to linearity.  It isn't natural to our species, I believe, but it's a staple of our current culture and has been since mid-late antiquity.  We place gods, money, people, almost everything into hierarchical arrangements, often without even realizing it.  And, for me, I can see that linearity mis-applied in many of the New Age movements and early forms of Wicca.  Some of those groups tried to usurp Christian hierarchies by supplying coven hierarchies in which a person was the focus of hidden or covert monotheism - or in which there was nothing with which to be equal only because all elements were removed or nullified.  Not all of these movements were like this, and we owe even the bad ones much for what's evolved from their early struggles.  But I think they've passed down a bias for linearity to many a modern pagan.

For me, then, it's not surprising to feel that many of you apply an unnecessary rigidity to egalitarian settings.  Capitalists are always doing the same with socialist models, insisting that socialists want to make everyone and everything the same.  But I don't think that's legitimate.  I believe in socialism.  That doesn't mean everyone eats the same meals, had the same furniture, engages in the same cultural activities.  It means people have equal opportunities and equal resources.  The system is fluid because personalities are fluid.  Fluidity is part of a truly egalitarian structure.  I don't believe anyone should be forced to work if it taxes their bodies more than others', nor do I expect that people will perform the same duties for exactly the same amount of time or be totally paralyzed or unreasonable if a challenge arises.  Those who are truly egalitarian, I feel, are always willing to do whatever job, within our abilities, arises.  That willingness is a challenge on many levels, but I think it's a worthwhile challenge.

Again, I'm not saying that egalitarian arrangements work for larger groups.  I do participate in some groups that are larger and adhere to a loose, but still hierarchical, leadership structure.  I'm only saying that our resistance to groups working in an egalitarian manner may come from the bias toward linearity (and, therefore, monotheism, capitalism, and monarchy or oligarchy) so prevalent in our society.

From my perspective and in my experience only, people's talents are often hidden by hierarchies because they expect the same people to engage in the same tasks over and over.  They also seem, to me, more likely to assign prestige (social and cultural capital) to certain jobs above others - and, in doing so, make certain jobs seem less fulfilling than others.

I also feel that many hierarchical groups recognize at least some of these points.  After all, some of the best leaders strive for the maximum level of equality they feel they can achieve without doing anything to threaten the cohesion of the group.  They must recognize the value of equality, if only as an impossible ideal, if they're striving for it.

In my experience, people can be very down on egalitarian groups because they often don't last for very long.  But it might be equally valid to say that it's good that many egalitarian groups disband and free their members because a lot of hierarchical groups keep their members trapped.  Maybe it's natural to try out a number of egalitarian possibilities (at least until we can find a stable egalitarian group) and unnatural to stick with only one option.  I'm not saying it definitely is - only suggesting the possibility.

Darkhawk and Naomi J., that was, in part, a response to your remarks as well.  That's why I put the quotes together.  I hope that quoting method is ok (a lot of the ideas were woven throughout your posts, and I didn't want to chop them up a lot and put them out of order in quoting them.  I also hope no one minds that I'm probably over-qualifying myself about addressing ideas instead of people.  I'm new to this group, and (although I see no evidence of it here), I know that some groups can get upset about which practices are questioned or challenged, even if it's done without arguing ad hominem (which I have tried very hard to avoid).

Many blessings to you all.  Thank you so much for the clarity you've helped me achieve, and please continue to post if you would like to add anything (I'm subscribed to this thread and welcome other points of view, even - perhaps especially - if they challenge my own).

[I just realized I missed a few posts because (I think) my browser didn't load everything.  I'll try to respond to the rest later if I have a chance, but I'll wait for another post so I'm not double-posting.]
« Last Edit: July 05, 2013, 01:25:23 am by Aett of Cups »
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Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #19 on: July 05, 2013, 03:13:51 am »
Quote from: Aett of Cups;114622

In my experience, people can be very down on egalitarian groups because they often don't last for very long.  But it might be equally valid to say that it's good that many egalitarian groups disband and free their members because a lot of hierarchical groups keep their members trapped.  Maybe it's natural to try out a number of egalitarian possibilities (at least until we can find a stable egalitarian group) and unnatural to stick with only one option.  I'm not saying it definitely is - only suggesting the possibility.

My grove is over fifteen years old and has had about thirty members over the years. It currently has twelve, and we all love it. Not disagreeing with you - but I really don't recognise some of the objections to non-hierarchical groups that have been put forward in this thread. I have absolutely nothing against hierarchical groups - I just don't understand most of the generalisations I've heard here about either kind of group. And so, it occurs to me that cultural issues might be coming into play here. Or that OBOD is a very different organisation than some. I'm not sure which it is.
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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #20 on: July 05, 2013, 07:57:57 am »
Quote from: Aett of Cups;114622

Thank you for introducing the haptocracy model.  I like the general idea, but I'm not sure how it would by applied in terms of valuation of work.


Well, it's not exactly designed to be applied in terms of valuation of work, beyond "the stuff the group has decided is important gets done"

Because some people are going to have lives that give them 10 hours to throw at 'making this ritual happen this month', and some people are going to have 2, and some people might have 20, and some people might have 4 hours of writing and planning in them, and only 30 minutes of physical effort, and so on.

What it's about is allow the person who's doing the work to (again, within the parameters agreed) decide how to do it. So if the group has a value that you have seasonal, minimally processed food at ritual (allowing for whatever food restrictions are necessary), and you have someone who's volunteered to take on the main post-ritual dish, they get to decide what to cook and how to cook it.

For some people, they might choose a 10 or 20 hour process, if you add in the 'time it took to manage their personal garden'. For some people it might be an hour or two of active attention (if it's 'get food from a suitable store' and a method of preparation that is not heavily involved.)

Likewise, if someone's ritual writing process takes them 20 hours and several breaks for doing something totally different, and so on, that's okay - as long as the ritual gets written (and includes the bits necessary to the group). The fact that someone else could write a ritual in an hour (and have it be a good ritual) doesn't matter.

Ideally, in the cases where this has worked out, there's give and take: some months, people might do a task a more elaborate or time consuming way, when they have time and energy. In other cases, they might do a shorter or less involved version.

I should note that groups with fixed roles do this too: I have a method I *prefer* to use for ritual design and writing, for example, but if push comes to shove and I am short on time, I can put something together in an hour or 90 minutes that is, if not the *best* ritual I have ever designed, solid and useful and practical. Which, when one is in a religious practice that encourages you to come up with new rituals ever 28 days, is a handy sort of skill.

(Also, remember that long consensus based project I mentioned: we're like that: there are a bunch of things that have to happen, with varying scheduling, and some things that happen seasonally, but people ebb and flow in how much time they spend on it in a given week or month based on other things in their lives, because life is an ongoing thing, and people get sick, or they have a dear friend visiting from out of town, or their kid has commitments that take a lot of their time that month or whatever.)

However, one of the things that everyone *else* in the group has to let go of for this to work is their idea about process. (Or rather, anyone but the other people helping with that bit directly.) Someone may write awesome rituals, but there are a lot of ritual writing process approaches that drive me up a *tree*. But if they produce a suitable ritual (by which I mean one that fits the requirements for the group and does useful things for enough people) then - y'know, that's the point. The fact that how it got there is not a way I'd do it doesn't matter, any more than 'I couldn't cook like that' doesn't really matter if I didn't do the cooking, and the end result was awesome food.

Which leaves space for people to decide if they want to spend 20 hours on this or 10 or 2, or whatever. They get to value their *own* time and their own other commitments, and so on.

(This is, of course, where things can get bumpy, because if you are relying on someone to do an individual task, and they guess wrong on what it's going to take for them to get it done, you end up having to scramble. But that's humans being humans, and it's sort of trainable about, over time.)

There's also a thing here that I'm not sure I have the brains to pull out coherently right now (it's been a bad couple of brain fog weeks for me recently) but one of the things I've been thinking about a lot is 'available capacity'

A ritual facilitator in a ritual that is going smoothly may not have a ton to do (though ideally, I think there should be a fair bit of time and attention prior to ritual: building personal interactions with deities or whoever is getting invited/the focus of the work, etc.)

But for me, a good ritual facilitator is there if something goes wrong, and needs to reserve energy and ability to respond in case someone needs help (returning from meditation, dealing with difficult emotions that come up in the course of the ritual, having an experience of deity or another entity pressing in on them and wanting their time and attention, etc.) Exactly what those things *are* depends on the group and the ritual practices and exactly what you're doing, but they're still there.

Related: I spend a lot of my time when at the reference desk at work *not doing anything too hard* (because I am working off my laptop, will get interrupted, etc. there's some tasks that just aren't a good fit.) And yet, I can go 110 minutes in 120 where I am not actually really doing anything that requires a librarian to be standing there. But for those 10 minutes, when someone has an actual question, I am VERY USEFUL.

And it is worth it, in some circumstances, to have someone whose role it is to be available, and have the capacity to be of use in specific ways (and to know that they're the person who will step in if needed, which is also often important: like many people, I have several "Yeah, let's not do that again" stories about rituals going slightly wrong, and then things going *worse* because there wasn't a clear line of "Ok, here's how we're solving this" in place.)

Anyway, that spare capacity is a job, even if 95 percent of the time, you don't actually need them to do that.

Wandering back to the larger question: I remain really interested in how you find/experience the egalitarian groups you've enjoyed to solve two things.

1) the kind of situations I mentioned in my first post (having someone who wants to be a part, where there are good reasons on the part of other people in the group to be wary of that - especially in a situation where one or two people have a strong feeling about it, but most of the group doesn't, and would prefer to avoid conflict)

2) how you handle people who are comfortable doing a small amount of work/responsibility, but not an amount that is on par with what other people are doing.

Example that made me very aware of this: back in 2006/2007, I was very active in the group I trained in (I was working toward my 3rd degree at the time, to put this in context). I was regularly putting in 15-20 hours a week into the group, between teaching, group leadership meetings, various tasks at the covenstead (cleaning before and after ritual, but also working with the other people who lived there for general household things that, as it turned out, took way more time in ways that were harder for me than it does when I live alone.) And I was working full time and in grad school part time, so it's not like I didn't have other obligations and competing schedules involved.

Now, at that point, we had people in the group whose contribution to the group was basically that they'd show up for ritual, take a very minor ritual role or two (not one that involved substantial energy or advance preparation), be a pleasant stable presence in ritual (deeply useful and not to be underestimated, mind you), help a little with the cleanup (but certainly not everything that needed to be done) and they'd go away.

Which was being part of the group, but was *vastly* less work than six or seven of us were doing. (Because we were also at those rituals, and generally taking larger ritual roles that required more energy or recovery time or preparation, and we were also being a stable presence in circle, and we were doing more cleanup. Plus all the other stuff.)

On one hand, that could be a little frustrating sometimes. But it brought home that people want to commit different levels of time and energy to things, and that if I was really that frustrated by how some things got done, I had choices. (Try and see about changes, or - as I ended up doing in 2007, getting my 3rd degree and hiving so I could try doing things a different way in terms of practical effort on about 6 fronts.)

And it brought home the "them that is doing the work gets to decide how it gets done" (which broke down in a few places when we had competing ideas of what the work being done looked like, but that's a side issue.)

But I think the basic issue - "some people want to/can spend tons of time on this and some people don't" is a key one to address. And I'd love to hear about how egalitarian groups have managed that one.
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Darkhawk

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Re: Egalitarian magical organizations?
« Reply #21 on: July 05, 2013, 09:23:41 am »
Quote from: Aett of Cups;114622
For me, then, it's not surprising to feel that many of you apply an unnecessary rigidity to egalitarian settings.


I beg your pardon?

Having never personally encountered a group that was not lying about being egalitarian is "applying an unnecessary rigidity"?

Quote
I'm only saying that our resistance to groups working in an egalitarian manner may come from the bias toward linearity (and, therefore, monotheism, capitalism, and monarchy or oligarchy) so prevalent in our society.


Being tired of being lied to is "resistance to groups working in an egalitarian manner"?

Quote
Darkhawk and Naomi J., that was, in part, a response to your remarks as well.


I ... yeah.  Was it really?

Quote
[I just realized I missed a few posts because (I think) my browser didn't load everything.  I'll try to respond to the rest later if I have a chance, but I'll wait for another post so I'm not double-posting.]


As a general rule, by the way, we would far rather you double-post and quote only the material that you're responding to from the individual you're responding to than try to mash things together into giant posts.
as the water grinds the stone
we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

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