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News & Features Discussion  » Second Life: Roleplay Series - Second Life Gor

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  Stradden

Managing Editor

Joined: 7/08/05
Posts: 6729

 
OP  6/10/09 9:33:32 AM#1

Second Life, by its very dynamic nature, makes for a great foundation for roleplayers of all shapes and sizes. MMORPG.com Second Life Correspondent David Greene writes this look at the Gor roleplaying community within Linden's virtual world.

This begins a series of articles on role play is second life. Second Life is the most detailed virtual world platform today. With the tools available to shape Second Life to the needs of the user, the game has the potential to become the stage for the next generation of role players. Multitudes of landscapes have been built, and more are built daily to provide a backdrop for limitless storylines.

Gor, the word itself brings to mind muscled warriors and scantily clad beautiful women. The Gorean community is currently one of the largest role-play communities in Second Life, and probably the most misunderstood. Gorean role-play is based around the works of John Norman, the pen-name of Dr. John Lange, a professor of Philosophy and a classical scholar. The works of John Norman are often painted with ethnography, as he populated Gor with the equivalents of Romans, Greeks, Native Americans, Vikings, and other cultures. Started in 1967 Gor is an intricately detailed world in terms of flora, fauna, and customs. All of this detail makes it an ideal setting for role play. Sadly Gor's mature nature has prevented gaming companies from approaching it as a game concept. Second Life thus becomes an ideal platform for fans of John Norman's works.

Read Roleplay Series - Second Life Gor

Cheers,
Jon Wood
Managing Editor
MMORPG.com

  tigris67

Guide

Joined: 9/18/05
Posts: 1783

"You know what happened to the man that got everything he ever wanted? He lived happily ever after"

6/10/09 10:33:08 AM#2

That screenshot has to be, hands down, the hottest in-game avatar I have ever seen. 

Hi! My name is paper. Nerf scissors, rock is fine.
MMORPG = Mostly Men Online Roleplaying Girls
http://www.MichaelLuckhardt.com

  elvenangel

Novice Member

Joined: 10/03/04
Posts: 2228

Why So Serious?

6/10/09 10:47:27 AM#3

Out of all the things they could possibly report on in this "Non" Game they continue to allow on this website..they have to go and report on one of the more disgusting communities?  I mean seriously the subjucation and enslavement of women..yea sure its an RP and the females that participate do so willingly but its hardly a Good RP community to play in.  I mean how hard is it create a barbaric asshole that keeps women hidden under clothes and bring him to life?  Not very.

Atleast in Conan women could be ass kicking warriors as well in Gor if your a woman you might as well be a spec of dirt.

I still whole heartedly protest Second Life being on this website.  Its not a game...its Creators have said its NOT a game.   Its a social and creative atmosphere and some people just happen to run RPG games out of it.   When they aren't being bombarded by people making fun of them.

Please Refer to Doom Cat with all conspiracies & evil corporation complaints. He'll give you the simple explination of..WE"RE ALL DOOMED!

  shava

Novice Member

Joined: 3/09/05
Posts: 278

6/10/09 11:41:04 AM#4

In the books, the subjugated are all women, but if you read the article, men and women play both genders.  It squicks me out a bit too -- as though they had said, "this is the antebellum south, but whites *or* blacks can play slaves behind the keyboards."

This is so *not* the community I would have highlighted in SL though.  Why don't you profile NPIRL, or Better World Island, or if you want it to sound MMO-like, any of the medieval, Star Trek, Firefly, and various other game hud sims?

*SIGH*

Anyone wants a well-rounded tour of SL, DM me, and I'll introduce you to the real people.

 

Shava (Shava Suntzu in SL -- Tuna Oddfellow's partner -- google Tuna, you might enjoy it! :)

 

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/10/09 12:48:34 PM#5
Originally posted by shava

In the books, the subjugated are all women, but if you read the article, men and women play both genders.  It squicks me out a bit too -- as though they had said, "this is the antebellum south, but whites *or* blacks can play slaves behind the keyboards."

This is so *not* the community I would have highlighted in SL though.  Why don't you profile NPIRL, or Better World Island, or if you want it to sound MMO-like, any of the medieval, Star Trek, Firefly, and various other game hud sims?

*SIGH*

Anyone wants a well-rounded tour of SL, DM me, and I'll introduce you to the real people.

 

Shava (Shava Suntzu in SL -- Tuna Oddfellow's partner -- google Tuna, you might enjoy it! :)

 


 

This article is one of many on the subject of role-play in Second Life. The Gor community is one of the largest and is a starting point. The next article will cover Starwars role-play in Second Life, and the one after that is Battlestar Galactica role-play. There are as many styles of role-play in SL as there are people who visit that world, I am only introducing these elements to the readers so that they can find their own direction. Second Life has every tool available for any community to launch any style of role-play and it is this facet I am trying to bring to the attention of readers here.

Arra Jinx

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/10/09 12:58:24 PM#6
Originally posted by elvenangel

Out of all the things they could possibly report on in this "Non" Game they continue to allow on this website..they have to go and report on one of the more disgusting communities?  I mean seriously the subjucation and enslavement of women..yea sure its an RP and the females that participate do so willingly but its hardly a Good RP community to play in.  I mean how hard is it create a barbaric asshole that keeps women hidden under clothes and bring him to life?  Not very.

Atleast in Conan women could be ass kicking warriors as well in Gor if your a woman you might as well be a spec of dirt.

I still whole heartedly protest Second Life being on this website.  Its not a game...its Creators have said its NOT a game.   Its a social and creative atmosphere and some people just happen to run RPG games out of it.   When they aren't being bombarded by people making fun of them.

Um as far as female Warriors ... do some reading, the Panthers are a all female Warrior tribe in the storyline.

and as far as Second Life not belonging here ...
 

Let’s see MMORPG.com OR


massively multiplayer online role-playing game .com


Now a bit further … Second Life is ….
Massively – yea its Massive largest game world to date as far as this player has seen.
Multiplayer - yea its Multiplayer 50,000 to 80,000 online at any given time.
Online – Linden Labs servers have some of the best uptime I have seen in any virtual world available.
role-playing – Thousands of role-play communities exist in SL so yea … its role-playing
game – although it can be more, Second Life is an entertainment medium house on a computer which really sounds like a game to me.

Second Life has as much right to be listed as any other ‘game’ here on this site dedicated to everything that Second Life falls under by definition.
 

Arra Jinx

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/10/09 1:01:31 PM#7
Originally posted by tigris67

That screenshot has to be, hands down, the hottest in-game avatar I have ever seen. 


 

The pic is of Fabien, the creator of the Gorean Hub.

Arra Jinx

  cerebrix

Advanced Member

Joined: 6/03/04
Posts: 573

6/10/09 2:54:48 PM#8

 those gor people are more batshit crazy than a hipster on an 8 ball

Games i'm playing right now...

"In short, I thought NGE was a very bad idea" - Raph Koster talking about NGE on his blog at raphkoster.com

  smoothette

Apprentice Member

Joined: 4/16/09
Posts: 3

6/10/09 3:58:55 PM#9

I have done alot of role play in my (to many years to count) of online gaming, i have played everything from wow, swg, the sims online, sl, entropia,  12 sky, diciple, dragonsky beta, guild wars, freerealms, luminary, mortal online, perfect world, prinston tale, requiem, runes of magic, shaiya, and signed up for old republic, stargate, and several other beta's.  and my second lie character is from 2005..

during my time in second life i have roleplayed mafia, i have roleplayed co-owner of a baby hospital where we not only helped them with body shapes but actually gave birth shoving a baby out of well we'll leave that alone for now because of the kids.

second life is definately roleplay of many types, you can also just be yourself but better, u can drop that last 10 lbs in an instant, you can have long hair one day and short the next, and you can make it night or day anywhere u go so that magical moment never ends till u fall asleep or loose electricity.

I have heard alot of things about gor, but after reading this article i am very interested in learning more. they have roles where women are free woman and go about business as men do the only diffeence is the manor of dress, so it is not " disgusting" against women, you just need to go and talk to the people at the hub and find all the information.

well thats my 2 cents worth, and i would really love for people to stop being so shallow about second life.. it is an mmorpg in every sence of the word... if u think its not but wow is, look at all the people in wow that do nothing but sit around in the citys and talk and dance just like the people in sl do.

 

Blessed Be!

  FTLNewsFeed

Novice Member

Joined: 11/07/08
Posts: 6

6/10/09 4:26:23 PM#10

Personally I don't role-play, I'd rather have a story told to me then actually try to go through the hassle of creating my own (and generally I don't think any I could create would be any good). Also, the desire to roleplay inside of a savage and barberic culture where treating women like slaves is acceptable is entirely beyond me. Don't they realise that "conceiling" women does anything but? They actually stick out like sore thumbs to any would-be harrasser/rapist and it ends up treating them like second class citizens which means that male children see them as less valuable as themselves and seperate but not equal. But I concede that in the end this is a choice the role-player makes, and they have the right to denigrate themselves however they see fit. I just hope they acknowledge the damage these kinds of actions cause in real life and understand that their role-playing should not be extended into it.

  Breagha

Novice Member

Joined: 12/27/05
Posts: 134

Meow.

6/10/09 5:23:44 PM#11

Not a Gorean RPer myself, somehow just never caught on, but I fail to see how RP in Gor is any different from RPing in ancient Rome, the star wars universe, RPing in a contemporary setting, or any other scenario that sports slavery. Frowning at Gor because you've heard something from someone who heard something from someone is just- *slaps herself before she manages to say something detrimental and antagonizing*

*shakes her head to clear it, smiling sheepishly* My apologies, back again.

Women who join the Gorean RP choose themselves whether to play a free woman or a Kajira. And they choose themselves whether to join in the Gorean RP at all. Like all RP it's all fantasy.

In many ways, I very much prefer the Gorean approach. As opposed to most other settings where slavery is cruel, demeaning and sadistic, most Kajirae are pampered beings, enjoying the good-will, attention and trust of their Master.


All that aside, SL is one of the most versatile clients available today. All the people crying over the route MMOs are taking, should pay it a visit, make their own game there, and see how it feels to constantly having to deal with moaners and haters ^^

It's true, however, that SL is not a game. Calling SL a game would be like calling an elephant mosquito. There's so much more to SL than 'just' games. There're no limits in SL other than the ones your abilities impose on you. Find the right people - if you're no builder or scripter yourself - and anything is possible.

"So I contend that the player stories will always be more powerful than the scripted stories that we try to tell the players."

- Will Wright

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/11/09 7:49:10 AM#12
Originally posted by FTLNewsFeed

Personally I don't role-play, I'd rather have a story told to me then actually try to go through the hassle of creating my own (and generally I don't think any I could create would be any good). Also, the desire to roleplay inside of a savage and barberic culture where treating women like slaves is acceptable is entirely beyond me. Don't they realise that "conceiling" women does anything but? They actually stick out like sore thumbs to any would-be harrasser/rapist and it ends up treating them like second class citizens which means that male children see them as less valuable as themselves and seperate but not equal. But I concede that in the end this is a choice the role-player makes, and they have the right to denigrate themselves however they see fit. I just hope they acknowledge the damage these kinds of actions cause in real life and understand that their role-playing should not be extended into it.


 

In the logic of the Gorean raider the robes of concealment could just as easy hide the ugly as they hide the beautiful so those in the robes are often passed by. Another valuable point is that the robe are heavy and cumbersome, many of the free women of Gor are actually jealous of the Kajira who get to wear light beautiful silks. It is also important to note that there are plenty of free women that own male slaves called kajirus. Just as easily as a Kajira can be collared for pleasure, or work so can a kajirus be likely collared …. So guard those necks guys.

Arra Jinx

  calranthe

Novice Member

Joined: 1/29/05
Posts: 361

6/11/09 7:55:57 AM#13

Before you all go ga ga on gor in sl you need to know some facts about gor in general and how it actually is both in sl, irc, online chat and rl, some (few) roleplay gor and its nothing more than a game but for MOST involved with gor it goes far beyond that and into the world of real life slave trading for money.

 

Here is a factual sheet on gor which should be read by ANYONE even thinking it looks fun.

Before we start let me explain that I personally have a long history in D/s and fetish scene most people involved in that are responsible adults and would not touch gor.

 

I did not write this but i've personally and my friends experienced the fallout from so called gor roleplay.

The Problem of Gor v.2 - Second Draft- 9/05/06
The Problem of Gor -Final Draft- 9/15/06
---------------------------
This notecard discusses the Gorean lifestyle and its potential dangers. It was meant to largely express facts, concerns, and opinions and is not meant to restrict freedom of choice. This is a critical, first-hand account of Gorean lifestyle written by a close observer. In the end, if you want to be gorean it's entirely up to you.

This notecard (and vendor it came in) may be freely distributed and/or placed within a store or home.

Table of Contents:
1. A Description of Gor
2. Gor Philosophy
2a. Gor Society
3. Conditioning
3a. Doublethink and Repetition
3b. Seven Tactics of 'Coercive Persuasion'
3c. An Example of Tactics
4. Beyond Roleplay
5. Is it a Cult?
6. What can I do?

----------------------------------------
1. A Description of Gor
----------------------------------------

Gor is an alternate-world detailed in John Norman's "Chronicles of Gor", a twenty-six novel series that combines philosophy and erotica with science-fiction. It is a highly detailed setting in terms of wildlife and customs, borrowing from various ancient cultures such as the Greek, Native American and Viking cultures. Advanced technology is present, but the life of the humans on the planet remain otherwise primitive to the modern day. Followers of the philosophies and lifestyle outlined in the books are called Goreans.

Gor has been a presence online for quite some time, but their exposure has been limited to places such as Usenet and private IRC channels. However, the Gorean culture has shifted towards more open communities. Many people were not aware of Gor until joining visual chat rooms such as the Palace, Active Worlds, and Second Life.

This has not been met without problems. It has been widely believed that Active Worlds was 'taken over' by Goreans. This came to pass as many Goreans were placed in charge of the community as 'Peacekeepers', the game masters of Active Worlds. Many reports of unfair treatment, attacks on criticism and strong promotion of Gor in the beginner areas have been made.

When it comes to Second Life, Gor first became widely known when the sim Port Kar went public in the spring of 2005. However, the Gorean community have been around for quite some time along the mainland and in private islands. There are now more than a hundred public Gorean locations in Second Life.


----------------------------------------
2. Gor Philosophy
----------------------------------------

"Strong men simply need women. This will never be understood by weak men. A strong man needs a woman at his feet, who is truly his. Anything else is less than his fulfillment. When a man has once eaten the meat of the gods he will never again chew on the straw of fools."
-- Explorers of Gor, page 12


Gorean philosophy is split between what is detailed in the books and the more common standards of the community. The main difference lies in that the books are not strictly sexual. The Master/Slave relationship is not the primary focus as most of the detail is given to the society of Gor at large.

Beyond defining the Master/Slave relationship, the books have made commentary on a somewhat diverse range of topics. These topics have included genetic superiority, the nature of citizenship and freedom and war, among other things. An anonymous author commented on that the stances taken on these kind of subjects as being remarkably similar to those of Hitler's in Mein Kampf. As a result, some have classified Gorean philosophy as a form of nazism called
?.

This is a key contrast as the Gorean community has placed its focus on the Master/Slave relationship as its main purpose and sometimes its only purpose.

Therefore we get into the quote above as a main aspect of Gorean community philosophy: Man wishes to dominate a woman and a woman wants to be dominated by a man. If a woman does not, she is weak. All women are inferior to men and can only be happy being owned by a man.


### 2a. Gor Society

Generally, Gorean society in SL is made up as a series of strict rules. Some have involved themselves because these rules seem similar to heavy roleplay. To many roleplayers in Second Life, this is the only place to roleplay because few other communities exist for it.

Examples of rules:
?

Not only are the rules strict, but the punishments are severe. Failure to follow the rules of their society may result in being banned from the sim to having your character executed. Execution will also result in a banning from the sim..

In addition to rules and punishment, the Goreans run a slave market. The prices of slaves depend on how well 'trained' the slave is. Typically this can range from L$2000 to L$20,000, which is roughly $8 to $80 USD. Of course, there are cases where a slave may go for a higher price.

A man who is displeased by his slave will punish her her severely. This may take the form of harsh beatings or by outright killing her. Gorean executions can even take on the form of sexual torture in more extreme cases. A slave who tries to run away is pursued and often times eaten by a monster used for hunting.

Sales contracts and death certificates:
??
??
??
?

A story featuring a run-away slave being brutally hunted:
?

More examples of executions and sale of slaves may be found in the Glorious Ar library. For further reading on Gorean life and terms, the following are excellent resources:

??
?
??


----------------------------------------
3. Conditioning
----------------------------------------

As to be expected, the relationship dependency is skewed. Men are encouraged to treat their slaves like objects and women encouraged to give everything they have to men. This leads to problems when a Master no longer feels that his slave is of any use. A Master will simply sell the girl to someone else and get the money, he developed no huge relationship to the girl as much as you have a relationship with your car.

The girl on the other hand, is taught to be dependent and totally in love with her Master. To be sold to another so is a form of rejection. This sort of sting can be more mild, with the girl a little depressed at each time she's traded off. However, some have gone into a full breakdown and have inflicted pain on themselves or others. While not every slave is sold without consent, those that have been will usually have a story that falls between these reactions.

This sort of dependency is only the surface of what conditioning Gorean slaves can be put through. To most starting out in Gor, it's an innocent fantasy world of roleplay. Many would not even consider there being any possible mind conditioning or thought reform occuring. This is something that can and will be exploited.


### 3a. Doublethink and Repetition

"Freedom permits a woman to live without a man. Slavery makes a woman need a mans touch... Slavery, of course, is the surest path by means of which a woman can discover her femininity. The paradox of the collar is the freedom which a woman experiences in at last finding herself, and becoming herself."
-- Magicians of Gor, page 160

"The great masses of people will more easily fall victims to a big lie than to a small one. Especially if it is repeated again and again."
-- Adolf Hitler


George Orwell's defined the term 'doublethink' in his novel 1984. Doublethink is the power of accepting two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously. A popular doublethink slogan in his book is "Freedom is slavery, war is peace".

For some slave girls in Gor communities, John Norman's books are mandatory readings. Each book has the repeated theme that women are naturally slaves to men. The moral of every story is that neither men nor women can be happy unless they follow this nature. This is the big lie that is repeated again and again.

They state that "Slavery is freedom". This is the direct flip of Orwell's quote "Freedom is slavery". As stated above, this is repeated throughout the books and written in as persuasive and romantic of a matter as possible. The intended goal of this mandatory reading is to drill home this sort of doublethink until you have a person honestly believing that "slavery is freedom". This is an exceptionally effective form of control.


### 3b. Seven Tactics of 'Coercive Persuasion'

For a more professional look at this sort of conditioning, Dr. Margaret Singer has written an excellent piece on 'coercive persuasion'. Here is where a copy of her piece may be found: (link here)

For the sake of simplicity, it's best if the paper is summarized here. 'Coercive persuasion' is a method of slowly manipulating the way a person thinks and feels. It doesn't happen over night and all seven tactics do not need to be used. But, in time, a person exposed to these tactics can be influenced and conditioned.

The seven tactics she's outlined can be summarized as:

1. 'Softening Up' - First a victim is prepared by focusing them on REPEATED activities, ideas or senses. This is to make the person more receptive to further suggestion.

2. 'Social support' - By using rewards and punishments, the victim is separated from their friends and family who are not part of the group. Being part of the group is rewarded, spending time outside of it is punished. Making a person reliant upon the group for money and other needs helps this immensely.

3. 'Censorship' - Rules are put in place where certain thoughts are not allowed to be expressed. What can be said to an outsider from the group is also controlled, as is communication in general. Usually a group will come up with its own 'language' for describing things.

4. 'Peer pressure' - The group makes a constant, firm effort to convince a person to rethink their own beliefs and their past life. The victim is made to believe their past way of life is wrong and that they must fit into the group.

5. 'Low self-esteem' - The group seeks ways of breaking a person's self-confidence and faith in their own judgement. The idea is to make a person not wish to act on their own and instead be guided by the group.

6. 'Non-violent punishment' - Anything from intense humiliation to loss of privilege, social isolation, loss of status, intense guilt, anxiety, manipulation and other techniques. This is all done to make the person afraid of disobeying.

7. 'Threats' - A victim is lead to believe that failing to fit into the group will mean terrible things. Not just punishment mentioned in tactic six, but things such as mental illness, drug habits, being poor and homeless, a miserable love life and general unhappiness.


### 3c. An Example of Tactics

In one form or another, all seven tactics outlined by Dr. Singer can be found in Gorean activities. To better see this point, consider the hypothetical situation of a new slave in SL:

The first tactic is sometimes unnecessary since the slave might already have knowledge or be involved with Dominant/submissive culture. They're already 'Softened-up' and ready for more. However, our slave is new and curious. She is first told that she is missing out on something in her life. In order to solve this, she must study these notecards chock full of Gorean slave philosophy in order to join them.

After this, the second tactic comes into play. Every time she acts the way the city or her Master wishes, she is rewarded not just by her master but the entire community. As she does this, she is told not to accept IMs from anyone but those her Master approves of. This means previous friends she had before Gor must be ignored. Thus, she has now cut herself off from others and has created her new family in the Gor sims. As a sign of devotion to her Master, our slave has in her profile that her Master will speak for her, and must monitor calling cards of friends or Incoming IMs, all must recieve permission from the owner. Some owners even refuse their slave girls the ability to hold money or property that isn't directly given to them, demanding the slave give up everything she has to him.

Outsiders of Gor sims are not allowed in frequently. The Gor sims keep a stranglehold on the kind of information from the outside that reaches the sims. Strangers who express opposing viewpoints will be banned. If our slave questions or agrees with said viewpoints she may be punished or threatened with her own banishment. This is the third tactic.

The fourth tactic is a bit more subtle. The novels of Gor frequently state that everyone on Earth are all wrong when it comes to relationships. Supposedly, both men and women are unhappy because of this failure. The solution is the Gorean way, of course! This effect is increased by placing our slave in "another world" where everything works different.

Much more obvious is the fifth tactic. Slaves are told often that they're stupid and powerless, and our slave is no exception. In fact, she's found a Master who insists she speaks in the third person (almost mandatory for slaves in all gorean sims, rarely will a gorean slave not talk in 3rd person). This is not an uncommon practice in the D/s community and has found its way into Gorean life. Not being able to directly refer to herself reduces her to a mere object in her own mind, making our slave more ready to be used by others.

Alas, what if our slave still questions the philosophy and Masters of Gor? What if she fails to please her Master? At first offenses she'll just be humiliated publicly in numerous ways and stripped of her privileges. In this case, our slave has been left in a cage with a floating title saying what she did wrong. She could be left there for hours and expected to stay there unless she wishes for more punishments. Of course, she stays there, not wanting to displease her Master or the community further to which she seeks approval from. Doing that might mean expulsion from Gor, probably by execution. And according to the philosophy which our slave is trying to follow, she'll never be happy without the Gorean way.

That is tactic six and seven, respectively.

Thus our slave's training can keep her chained to the sim and the community without physically chaining her to anything at all. After all, where are you going to go if you get banished from Gor and shunned all your old friends? What if everything you have in SL and everything you believe now, are in those sims?

This above example is not totally uncommon and sadly, it's not strictly kept in a 'fantasy world'. The next section will cover that in more heavily.


----------------------------------------
4. Beyond Roleplay
----------------------------------------

Something that must be stressed is that not all Gorean roleplay is actually fantasy. This is how some actually think and act in real life as well as online. These Goreans call themselves 'lifestylers' or 'true goreans'.

In terms of danger, these are the ones to watch out for. These are the ones who whole heartedly believe in the philosophy put forth from the books. One of the few things that stop lifestylers from committing all Gorean practices is the law. However, the law doesn't always restrain these kinds of urges.

In 2000, a man was found to have killed a string of women connected to the Gorean lifestyle. Using the name 'Slavemaster', he would obtain 'slaves' from several online Gorean communities. From there, he would attempt to organize a real life meeting with these women. During these meetings, some unfortunate women had refused his advances. This resulted in their murder. Their bodies were then placed in 55 gallon drums and dumped in a nearby pond. (2)

This is something the Gorean books have spelled out clearly -- if a slave displeases you, you may kill her. While the above may be considered by many to be an extreme case, to a true Gorean lifestyler it is not a crime. The dangers are not just limited to that of women, but children as well.

Many parents would not want their children to see what they do in the bedroom. However, this doesn't always apply to Goreans. Their 'lifestyle' isn't considered to be a bedroom game. The following quotes have been taken from a popular Gorean lifestyler site named Goreanwhispers.com. On September 22, 2003 a discussion was held on the site about Gorean lifestyle in terms of children.

A few members were commented to say:

"(swan{Ursa}) swan has tried to teach the children that males in the household are to be pleased by females .. they tend to take that as gospel now."
"(swan{Ursa}) We have one boy 10, two girls aged 12 and 14 soon to be 15. Then there are swan's two sons in Australia - 21 and 24 - both who know of our lifestyle, even to the degree that swan is slave to Master"
"(antigone`) a girl hasn't any children , but she imagines an easy way to "introduce" them to the concept of Gor is to give them the books to read...many have read the books when they were 15 or so... "
"(Ursa) It all boils down to doing the things that every parent should do: raise your children to be the best people they can be. If I believe that the Gorean lifestyle is a good one, why would I not teach my children in its ways?"
"Ursa nods to Aahzmandius.... I told him that if the kid hit him he was to do his best to flatten the kids nose. A suspension will be over in a day or two. The respect from defending himself will last a lot longer."
"(Ursa) Yes, she does dress appropriately when the children are here. Though, of course, the collar never leaves her pretty neck. And she wears ankle bells."
"(Ursa) I don't think I restrict myself to eye gestures as commands. It's my nature to sometimes ask and sometimes tell swan to do things for me. That doesn't change because the children are in the house. ;) swan has been known to sit at my feet, even with children in the house."

Source: ??


----------------------------------------
5. Is it a Cult?
----------------------------------------

"But then there are things like cults - there, mind control happens when a cult wins over another person's consciousness through hypnotic-like inducements including 'love bombs', a form of praise, overseeing an inductee's every action, and eventually using shame and the threat of being expelled by the cult as a means of controlling them."
-- Professor E. Mark Stern of Iona Collage in New York

Love bombs, shame, and threat of being expelled. All things Gorean sims use on slave girls. If a slave girl obeys, she is rewarded. If she disobeys, she's shamed and punished. If she speaks her mind or questions the philosophy, then she's threatened with expulsion from the sims. But is Gor a cult?

This is a complex question that is best answered by 'Yes and no'. A major thing that every cult generally has to start is a charismatic leader. One who personally founds a real life organization and most likely writes a series of manuals or books that describe the cult's philosophy.

A Gorean will state that the Goreans have no charismatic leader. This is both true and untrue, as John Norman could be considered this. He's not expressed much interest in personally founding a real life version of his Gor philosophy. However, it's impossible to deny that people have formed a 'lifestyle' around his prolific writings, none the less.

Simply because John Norman isn't working with these people directly does not mean that it is directionless. It does have a series of community leaders fostering their own smaller groups based off the Gor books. If any one of them were able to be charismatic, motivated, and influential enough they could concievably spark the trigger to the full blown Gorean cult.

Some Goreans would like to label Gor a 'lifestyle' when confronted with these sorts of questions. Can this be considered a lifestyle? A lifestyle, in definition is based on a multiple series of writing from multiple authors, dictating some sort of way of living. Thus something like D/s may be considered a lifestyle because it's a concept based in no particular world and no particular one creator. Gor however, is based entirely on one series of books, by one author, as D/s it could be considered an extreme version of such, however, once you include gorean culture, gorean philosophy, and gorean writings as tomes of knowledge, you now have crossed the line past lifestyle and more into cult. You have a seemingly harmless series of books, but seem to have the sole purpose of dressing up a cult-like philosophy as fantasy. Because of this, despite the Sci-Fi/Fantasy label, the books are much closer to philosophical guides to life and love. They encourage the reader to take on the Gorean perspective -- getting them into the cult, so to speak?

But with no formalized process past that step, they just splinter off into smaller groups with individual leaders and different levels of seriousness. Another way of looking at it, is perhaps it's simply a cult without a leader. It could be likened to a pot with all the ingredients mixed and ready, waiting to be cooked. Or perhaps more appropriately: a bomb waiting to be detonated.


-----------------------------------------
6. What can I do?
----------------------------------------

So by now you're either one of four things: worried, enraged, incredulous, or apathetic. Taking in account the first one, say you read this notecard because your friend recently became a Gorean slave and is beginning to show the signs of early conditioning, you may ask, "What can I do?". As much as you might like to rush in like a valiant knight in stories and fight off the tormentors, it doesn't quite work that way, infact, any rash and violent actions towards your enslaved friend's captors may cause her to dip deeper into Gorean hands. In this battle your weapon will be knowledge and you'll have to wield it well.

The first and most important thing is, don't lose contact! Often when a person who dislikes Gor finds out their friends are getting into it, they may shun them. This is a very bad idea. In the conditioning process, Goreans want their new slave to be cut off from her old friends so she becomes dependent on the Goreans for social contact. If you remain in touch, it reminds them that they still have someone outside of Gor to go to should they decide to leave. You'll be her anchor for the non-Gorean world.

Gently remind her of your opinions on the subject. If you can, give her any information about it that's not from a Gorean source you can. Again, you have to be gentle with this, if you are too harsh she may take it as a form of rejection and slip into Gor for approval.

Remember overall that in the end, this is the choice of the person getting involved. If you're lucky they may decide based on what they've seen that it's not for them. However, it's not uncommon for a person to exit Gor only after a large tragedy. Unfortunately this is usually the only time a Gorean slave leaves Gor for reasons other than making up her mind.

Remember though, that Gor -- like cults and drugs -- is subject to relapses. While your friend may have exited Gor for now, that does not mean they're done with it. Often times an ex-Gorean through tragedy will return to Gor soon afterwards. Thus, the important thing to do in this situation is an increased version of the aforementioned tactics: Remind her she has friends outside of Gor and comfort her, while gently reminding her of the bad things of Gor and thus why it's not worth going back too.

The main thing Goreans run on is the concept of it being harmless roleplay and therein the ignorance of people as to what's really happening in Gor. These conditioning effects can sometimes even be unintentionally produced. It's a side effect of closely following John Norman's already structurally manipulative persuasiveness and the general concept of slavery.

In the spirit of this, the best thing that can be done (for those who don't have a friend involved) is to distribute the knowledge. Whether by this notecard, other notecards, conversation, debate, or any other form of communication, it should be done. It may be very tempting to lash out in griefer ways, but honestly is not recommended as it tends to just give Goreans examples of how non-Goreans are immature and that their way is the only proper way.

In the end, the only thing that can get a person out of Gor is themselves.

----------------------------
??

Thanks to:
Belaya Statosky for all the numerous editing jobs and proof reading as well as ideas and support.

 

 

  Breagha

Novice Member

Joined: 12/27/05
Posts: 134

Meow.

6/11/09 9:16:57 AM#14

There'll always be extremists and fanatics. They pop up in every aspect capable of an extreme.

That's not the same as that people shouldn't RP what they want. Just because some people can't make the distinction and take things too serious, I don't see why it should discourage others from having fun with their RP.

"So I contend that the player stories will always be more powerful than the scripted stories that we try to tell the players."

- Will Wright

  calranthe

Novice Member

Joined: 1/29/05
Posts: 361

6/11/09 9:29:11 AM#15
Originally posted by Bree'ah

There'll always be extremists and fanatics. They pop up in every aspect capable of an extreme.

That's not the same as that people shouldn't RP what they want. Just because some people can't make the distinction and take things too serious, I don't see why it should discourage others from having fun with their RP.

 

I know people in sl, intelligent people with common sense and a future who got involved with gor on sl for "fun" for "RP" some of them were really excellent rp, but slowly they got drawn into it, a couple of friends no longer talk to me because im not gor, others have left the internet completely because of there experiences in gor and one young lady I had the please of knowing quit her degree course and no longer talks to her family.

 

I personally have hadto help council and try to repair the hurt and pain for over 30 men and women who either they got involved in gor or there partner/daughter/husband got involved.

Gor is not rp like any other it is mostly rp with a core purpose to draw you into that lifestyle outside of rp.

It is classified as a cult, in some ways worst than scientology and or doomsday cults because gor starts out as harmless fun, but your slowly drawn in, your friends become members or the only friends who seem to "understand" you are members of gor, your family doesn't, your outside friends don't understand etc.

This isn't a small faction of gor this is 80-90% of goreans online and rl.

If you play around with this, if you think your smart enough or it won't happen to you then you have my comisirations, i've seen gor member "a clique" of 3-4 girls who will befriend a new roleplayer, be her best friend for however long it takes to draw you in, months even, be there for everything your trauma, your problems, get inside your head, then draw you in.

 

 

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/11/09 11:13:30 AM#16
Originally posted by calranthe
Originally posted by Bree'ah

There'll always be extremists and fanatics. They pop up in every aspect capable of an extreme.

That's not the same as that people shouldn't RP what they want. Just because some people can't make the distinction and take things too serious, I don't see why it should discourage others from having fun with their RP.

 

I know people in sl, intelligent people with common sense and a future who got involved with gor on sl for "fun" for "RP" some of them were really excellent rp, but slowly they got drawn into it, a couple of friends no longer talk to me because im not gor, others have left the internet completely because of there experiences in gor and one young lady I had the please of knowing quit her degree course and no longer talks to her family.

 

I personally have hadto help council and try to repair the hurt and pain for over 30 men and women who either they got involved in gor or there partner/daughter/husband got involved.

Gor is not rp like any other it is mostly rp with a core purpose to draw you into that lifestyle outside of rp.

It is classified as a cult, in some ways worst than scientology and or doomsday cults because gor starts out as harmless fun, but your slowly drawn in, your friends become members or the only friends who seem to "understand" you are members of gor, your family doesn't, your outside friends don't understand etc.

This isn't a small faction of gor this is 80-90% of goreans online and rl.

If you play around with this, if you think your smart enough or it won't happen to you then you have my comisirations, i've seen gor member "a clique" of 3-4 girls who will befriend a new roleplayer, be her best friend for however long it takes to draw you in, months even, be there for everything your trauma, your problems, get inside your head, then draw you in.

 

 


 

Thank you for your very detailed post, but I have yet to see it having much bearing on the reality of RP in SL by the Gorean community. Anything can be taken to an extreme, I know people that went to the Jedi academy in NY and really think that makes them a Jedi. Those that have taken Gor to RL have done so on their own and for their own reasons, breathing foulness into the writings of Norman. I personally do not feel that those that practice a RL translation of a fictional writer’s works should be a disrupting force on those that want to RP in a richly detailed world created by a relatively competent writer. These individuals would have found some form of their little fantasy even if JN had never wrote a word. Gor does not equate to BDSM although some drag it in. There are many who simply play it as a Warrior or Free Woman or Free companion that never enter the seedier side of the RP. Many of those that enter Gor RP in SL because they are into BDSM simply leave because that is in no way the focus of the majority of the RPers there. SL is by far not the same as the IRC and IM version of the Gor community. There is a difference of being a fan of the writing and thinking you can buy and sell people RL which is part of some of the IRC and IM groups. Those reading the books and not injecting their own fetishes will find that the main character often frees slaves, helps the down trodden, and is an all around hero type of guy. So please if your friends took it to far, I am sorry, but that is something within them and not within the norm. People need to learn that these are virtual worlds, and although they can be fun, they are just games and not reality. Taking a fantasy world like this and making it your real world is a sign of instability and the person needs help not a MMORPG. I play Darkfall but I dont hack people apart with my sword in the streets nitghly and loot their warm dead bodies before they rez and run back so I can do it again.

Arra Jinx

  Breagha

Novice Member

Joined: 12/27/05
Posts: 134

Meow.

6/11/09 6:06:52 PM#17

Couldn't agree more...

It's not like people stop playing MMOs because some people die from exhaustion, playing till they drop, or we no longer study physics, chemistry and astronomy in school, because scientology is gonna eat you.

Responding to extremism by complete boycotting the focus of their fanatism - providing, of course, it is something you find enjoying - is silly.

No way I would give up something I love, because others haven't figured out yet that too much of a good thing is bad for you.

"So I contend that the player stories will always be more powerful than the scripted stories that we try to tell the players."

- Will Wright

  Arra_Jinx

Second Life Correspondent

Joined: 2/05/09
Posts: 29

"RL subscription rates are to high, Second Life is free"

6/11/09 7:07:08 PM#18
Originally posted by Bree'ah

Couldn't agree more...

It's not like people stop playing MMOs because some people die from exhaustion, playing till they drop, or we no longer study physics, chemistry and astronomy in school, because scientology is gonna eat you.

Responding to extremism by complete boycotting the focus of their fanatism - providing, of course, it is something you find enjoying - is silly.

No way I would give up something I love, because others haven't figured out yet that too much of a good thing is bad for you.


 

I love a good post of reason thank you

its all kind of like saying "Holy crap, I love a nice NY Strip Steak … but wait a medical website says it could kill me … I better give it up all together rather than find the right portion to eat."

Link to info on red meat

Arra Jinx

  flydowntome

Novice Member

Joined: 2/25/09
Posts: 106

6/12/09 7:11:15 PM#19

 I find it incredible that you'd cover this under the aspect of roleplaying-Gor essentially is just fetish fuel getting off on the subjugation of women based on books that are worse than L. Ron Hubbard. It's also a "lifestyle" so you can't even claim the roleplay canard, adherents do it in real life as much as possible.

If anything Gor needs to be ridiculed and marginalized in Second Life, because it contributes to a bad perception that all it is is deviant sex and linden dollars.

  shava

Novice Member

Joined: 3/09/05
Posts: 278

6/12/09 7:55:45 PM#20

Here is a fairly diverse discussion of the concept of rape which is central to Gor RP.  If you don't feel comfortable with the idea that by entering a Gor RP area you are in an open PvP rape scene, you simply shouldn't participate, unless you are quite sure of your bearings. 

Essentially, that's what you are buying into, is PvP sex with defined dominants and submissives (yes, there are female dominants, but they are a small minority, and yes there are free women -- but overwhelmingly this is about male avatars exerting forcible sexual dominance over female avatars).

Just remember, that X in the upper right of your window (on Windows) protects you from rape, ultimately, if you have enough sense to bail on the experience. 

Again, this is not the first RP community I would have highlighted in SL.  WTF.

 

Shava

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