A good friend of mine reads this space. She has watched me struggle writing this post. Last night, she sent me a text message. It read: "Please know you have it right when you identified 1) that you didn't deserve to be treated unfairly when 2) others in a position of authority willingly compromised their own impartiality and 3) that the third person willing and possibly intentionally prevented you from peace."
Note: When I proofread this, I noticed I mistyped a word in item 3. I wrote persona instead of person. That may be significant.
I do not think I talked about this enough with her for her to have surmised that. I damn well know I never mentioned item 3. Those were the words I needed to write this. The words were more neutral than I would have written. That was part of the problem.
I am going to use her template in sharing this rather than the full history approach I was trying to use. I have become so sick of this topic that repeating it one more time is simply impossible.
1) that you didn't deserve to be treated unfairly
After the very bad thing occurred, the people I considered friends, mentors and covenmates held a trial. On the surface both the woman and I were on trial. The plausible deniability so shoddily crafted fell apart immediately when everyone in the room including the woman in question were handed transcripts of my private email conversations with the coven leader. His movements were like dance as he handed them out. He sat with a satisfied impish smile. The transcripts he said were 'cropped to make me as good as possible.' Right. That is why I never handed a copy and her words were never shared with me.
The court, which included my GD mentor, ruled that I was to be banished from the coven for 90 days but I was never told why. Instead I was told, "do not think about it."
There was a lot of other things that happened that I will not go into. However, this caused a major internal conflict for me.
The crux it was this. How could these people whom I cared for and in the case of my GD mentor deeply trusted do such a thing? Obviously, I deserved it. Obviously, I was so corrupt, such a bad human being, so disrespected that they could justify their actions. These things they saw in me had to be so horrific, so ungodly, so corrupt that they could not even speak them.
I must have asked them to tell me a thousand times. Their silence was merciless.
This idea of my internal corruption began to fade when I spoke to a psychologist after my break down that was documented here.
I told him what had happened and then he went on to describe her other sexual behavior. He had it dead on. When asked how he knew he said, "Because she is a sociopath." Then after a pregnant pause he added, "a sadistic sociopath. It is what they do." "How," I asked, "Can these smart people be fooled by these obviously horrific acts?" By acts, I mean that after my very bad thing her sexual behavior was used to do damage to several other people. His reply was that such people are very good at telling people what they want to hear. Not all sociopaths are serial killers.
I had made the claim before that this woman simply told people what they wanted to hear. That claim had been contemptuously brushed aside.
I realized then that I was not a sociopath as I've never been good at telling people what they want to hear.
Kidding aside, this allowed me to understand a couple of things. First, is that it was of no fault of my own that I fell for the tricks of a sociopath. It is, after all, what they do. The second is a little bit more of a story.
I had a friend once that was involved in a long term relationship with a woman that had two serious mental health diagnoses. She finally needed to be temporarily involuntarily committed. The doctor pulled my friend aside and told him how HE behaved over the prior two decades. Amazed, my friend asked how he knew. The doctor said because she is this and that. Every sane person tries to fix such problems mostly in predictable ways. Of course, my friend failed at fixing the problem. One cannot fix the sanity of another. This allowed my friend to move on.
Now, I understand the revelation my friend had. I had much the same in my situation.
Note: I do see how it is entirely unfair for a shrink to call someone a sociopath he has never met. I am not saying she is one. However, the shrink did outline her behavior quite well without meeting her. That was what *I* needed to forgive myself.
2) others in a position of authority willing compromised their own impartiality
Once I broke with my mentor, many people, people that I would never have suspected came forward to enlighten me on just how and why those hurtful decisions were made. These statements were not just about my mentor but the others involved as well. These were people that would know. At worst, they were once removed. These were not idle rumors. The principal players would be shocked if they found out how many peopled independently and without my asking suddenly appeared and told the same stories.
Apparently, they only succeeded in keeping their secrets from me.
I remember repeatedly asking my mentor this question.
When it first happened you thanked me for being "the only one willing to tell me the whole story." This implies that the others were leaving things out intentionally to make themselves look good and me bad. I asked him how a discerning personality like his would then side with people he knew were trying to deceive him or influence him dishonestly. I followed it up with this. "What happened between the time when you thanked me for my honesty and you sided with them at the trial?" The response was always silence.
Now, I know.
I also know what influenced the others. I won't go into those details but I will say the one thing I've publicly repeated before that one of my then covenmates said, "Robert, I knew she was lying but if I sided with you, I'd never get my first degree." This was from a man that said I was his best friend. Other peoples' compromises were, how shall I say it? More base. When I say that, I am not referring to any one person but the lot.
The shrink had told me that my mentor's refusal to tell me the reason for ten years was abusive. His reasoning was that is was a) obviously extremely painful for me not to know and b) any teacher of any stripe doesn't try to use the same unsuccessful method for ten years. S/he would change methods.
I strongly disagreed then and now.
He was a very good teacher in a lot of ways. He has earned his stripes. My main objection was that it was abusive or intentionally cruel. This fellow has his faults. I have seen him be mean once or twice but long term intentional cruelty and abuse? No. He simply doesn't have it in him.
THE REVELATION that came after the events listed in Item 3 was that my mentor and others simply could not admit anything. When I realized why my former mentor could not reveal his part, it broke my heart, not for me, for him. I deeply feel sorry for him. Frankly, deeper than any reader of this blog would understand.
Initially, they knew it was a bad scene all the way around but they rationalized their reactions according to their own selfish needs. They had not realized at the time how devastating the very bad thing was to me nor did they realize how their behavior would make that much much worse. Once they did, they had two options.
Option 1 was to admit to themselves they made poor choices and caused a lot of unnecessary damage.
Given the coven leader once said in front of me, in a ritual setting as he was trying to give a malevolent talisman to HIS OWN COVENMATE, "It will hurt him but be FUN for us." I am going on the assumption the coven leader enjoyed my torment for a time. I do not think he enjoyed it forever. In fact, he made some small approaches that indicated he did not. However, having never actually been able to apologize, I never could trust him. If you can't apologize for your wrongs, you are still in denial. In occult terms, people in denial of their actions will ALWAYS repeat them until they learn. I am unwilling to be such a target again.
My mentor thinks of himself as a very compassionate guy. There is a reason he believes that. He believes it because it is true. He suffers when other people are in pain. I have seen it on many occasions. However, he is so compassionate he is simply not capable of fully accepting any responsibility. He understands the pain of others so deeply that he cannot reconcile his contributions to it while maintaining his self-image.
I get that.
It is human.
It breaks my f---ing heart. Truly.
But it is what it is.
As sad as I feel about the revelation about his pain, I too am human. I cannot reconcile with someone that would allow me to suffer so under the clouded conflict of being unable to reveal his compromised position or his inner humanity. He made me suffer for his sins while convincing himself he was helping me in the long term.
His silence did not help.
Option 2 was to try to make the best of it. Spin it so that it would appear that I had a lesson to learn and they were on-high wise. The first part was true. That is any easy call as there are always lessons to learn.
One lesson was that my hypocrisy sniffer is accurate but that I should keep such knowledge to myself. Telling people what they are not willing to hear is social suicide. Further, it does not serve them. Further, my anger at hypocrisy (my own and others) does not serve anyone (including me).
The second was that I cannot have more respect, more trust, more honor for another than I have for myself.
As an adjunct, there is something else my very emotionally sensitive crab nature (I am only a Leo by one hour) cannot do. I cannot own criticisms launched by people defending their actions.
After years of telling me that he was proud of me for doing the Work, my mentor claimed that I talk about it but never do it. False. His unwillingness to make his own internal work viable (at this stage) was speaking there.
Had I owned that, my confidence would be gone.
I have taken that lesson to other areas. My last girlfriend eviscerated me on the way out. She used the inner struggles I shared with her as a weapon. This deeply hurt me until I learned the above. Those things were her rationalizations for leaving. She may have had good reason or bad but those hurtful things were not it. She needed to maintain herself while leaving me. Now, I understand and do not own her words.
3) that the third persona willing and possibly intentionally prevented you from peace.
Yes. So many people over the years, that learned of the story later, asked me if any magick had been done to influence others to defend with words or silence the actions of this woman?
My answer was always that I didn't know.
However, I can share when I first began to suspect that was true. My most recent ex said that she didn't understand why it hurt me so, after all I had done x,y and z before that. She said that I had told her I had.
We hadn't spoken all that much about the incident in any detail nor my prior sex life. There as no way I said what she honestly believed I said. What clicked for me is that many other people said the same thing. I had written it off to my prior little ego trying to gin up some sexual credibility. Though I honestly never remembered saying those things. Yet many many people honestly believed I did. So, I believed I had. When the ex said them and I damn well knew that I made no such statement to her, I became very suspicious.
How the REVELATION came about
Step one was my friend Cai. He came by to do, and I use this term loosely, Reiki healing and massage when my back was out. When he was done he said, "This thing about you not understanding people doesn't serve you anymore. So, I removed it." My only objection was what do you mean "anymore"? When did it ever serve me?
At the time, I felt no different.
Not long afterwards, I was sitting at work, trying to figure this thing out and I said to myself, "I am tired of trying to figure this out. It doesn't serve me." I did the MM and looked for the energy inside of me that made me keep trying. I saw it. It was the easiest thing in the world to release it. BOOM! I became immediately sad for my former mentor, as outlined above but without any awareness of why. With the exception of the woman, I was also sad for everyone involved including myself. It was a pervasive all encompassing sad.
Then it went away.
A couple of days later, I did the MM again. This time I looked for any magick that influenced the situation. Immediately, I saw it. It was in the shape of a peach or some similar fruit, not an apple though. The peach was sliced but put back together as a whole. There was a piece for each person in that trial.
(A now deceased coven mate that I would never have suspected and still would doubt contributing to this used to say of people who did something nice, "You are a peach." I once wrote a blog post about using culturally appropriate idioms to do magick. This makes me wonder if the love people had for him was used in the spell)
I destroyed the peach with a thought. It was the easiest thing in the world to do. The pieces flew back into the mouths of all those who were there. My piece bounced off of my closed mouth. So, once again, they will remain silent and ignorant as once again they ate the fruit of the poisonous tree. Had they learned, the fruit would not have entered them. It is simple as that.
My compassion for them is not blind.
My very long term friend, The Witch, whom I love made a choice. She had never been particularly close to my mentor and generally refuses to attend any sort of party. When I dumped him, he invited her to a party 400 miles from her home. She went.
She volunteered with no prompting from me whatsoever that he publicly stated that he apologized to me "over and over" and she backed him him up saying, "I know, I have too."
She did apologize, once. I accepted that, even when later she again tried to rationalize the actions of the woman, I knew deep down part of her understood doing so was her psychological need and wasn't based in fact.
However, when I called her on the incident with my former mentor and asked how she could toss me to the wolves publicly she said, "Well, he didn't intentionally hurt you and he did admit what others did was wrong."
Yes, he did...many many years later.
However, admitting that someone else did something wrong is not an admission of his own part and it doesn't come close to an apology. An apology is, "I did x and hurt you deeply. I was wrong and I am sorry." It is not, "They did a bad thing."
So once again, a friend is gone. I mentioned that in a previous post. However, I now have friends that support me when I am right, challenge me when I am wrong, will not throw me under the proverbial bus when someone else is wrong and love me no matter what.
I deserve nothing less.