A little backstory about this forum.
This forum is born from another forum titled Ilsalunte Valion, which was dedicated to a very specific branch of gnosis inspired on the work of J.R.R. Tolkien. It has existed under that name since late 2007, after some earlier attempts of founder Dave Woosley (current member Meneldur Olvarion) to gather a group of like-minded individuals to develop a gnostically-inspired spiritual practice based on Tolkien's Legendarium (a term used to designate this mythopoetic body of work).
This forum fulfilled the need of its user group, though it has always been difficult to find like-minded others among the ranks of Tolkien-enthusiasts. The problem here is that the average 'Tolkien fans' is just as firmly bound by the iron chain of "imaginal equals falsehood" as most other people; and, even more disheartening, the ones that one tends to find where spirituality and Tolkien overlap are usually adrift, way over the edge. Those who can walk that narrow ridge in gnostic fashion are rare, especially in our niche.
I've always identified as a rationalist skeptic, until my gnostic metanoia was triggered by the combination of Ilsaluntë Valion and one of Stephan Hoeller's lectures: "JRR Tolkien's gnosis for our day". Though this branch of gnosticism remains my basis, I became interested in the phenomenon in a wider context. I listened to more of Dr. Hoeller's lectures, and eventually found Miguel Conner's Aeon Byte shows in iTunes. I was fascinated, after I learned to decode his introductions. I offered him help with the website after I heard him ask for it in one of the shows. And well, eventually the idea dawned on me that it might make more sense to find members for Ilsaluntë Valion among those who are interested in gnosticism, as among Tolkien fans or pagans (or what have you) - but also, that a discussion platform might be a nice feature for Miguel's theGodAboveGod.com. To which he agreed "as long as I don't have to moderate it" (or words to that effect).
For that purpose the forum needed to have a wider scope, of course. What I did was to draw up a forum structure that I hope will fulfil that purpose (if you have any suggestions don't hesitate to say so). The existing content of Ilsaluntë Valion is moved to a separate sub-board. Access there, apart from the publicly visible topics, is for now limited to the existing IV members considering the privacy and authorship of the members involved.
Things can always be made visible to the larger forum later on, if those involved want to do that.
If anyone is specifically interested in the topic of Tolkien-related gnosis, we can give access to that sub-board.
However, I don't see a reason why this could not also be discussed in the general section of this forum as well.
I can only hope that (as one of my favourite sayings of Stephan Hoeller goes) all of this will be of some use to you!
no in belain le eliar! (may the Valar bless you!)
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A! Suilannon le - elin velui, dîn dolog, aduial lúthad!
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