A new order of knighthood, the Knights of Gaia

Sir John Seymour KOG

Knights of Gaia: Gaia was a Greek Goddess who was Goddess of the Earth. Her name has come to stand for the biosphere of planet Earth - the mantle of living creatures which surrounds this planet and makes it different from the others that we know. Gaia is now under savage attack - and from one of her own creatures. One species, which has immodestly and very incorrectly named itself Homo sapiens, has got completely out of control. It has got out of balance and - by discovering how to release the stored energy in hydrocarbon fuel - is raiding and destroying the rest of Life on this planet and, if unchecked, will destroy, or at the best severely degrade, the living mantle of the Earth and almost certainly destroy itself. Gaia will then, after a few million years, heal herself, and the miracle of Life will survive after all.

For those of us who do not wish this to happen (because we feel we have a vested interest in the survival of our species) and who take the matter seriously enough to be willing to devote our lives to it, there should be a new order of Knighthood, and I suggest that we call this the Order of the Knights of Gaia.

The word 'knight' still has a gallant, romantic and chivalrous ring to it, even though for the last couple of hundred years the knights we know of have been pot-bellied, sedentary, treble-chinned businessmen who have contributed liberally to the party funds. The Knights of Gaia will change this image. We will not contribute a penny to the party funds. We will not be pot-bellied or treble chinned. We will keep ourselves fit and tough for the job that we have to do.

'Our job will be to fight dragons, the dragons of Greed - Exploitation - Pollution - War-for-the-wrong-reasons -- Obscene Size'

Our job will be to fight dragons. Now actual dragons may be amiable and even cuddly animals, who save their breath to warm the porridge of poor children. But the dragons we will fight are the other sort. The dragons of Greed - Exploitation - Pollution - War-for-the-wrong-reasons - any assault, in fact, on the living mantle around the Earth which, although we do not worship it, we consider sacred. Every Knight will no doubt make his own list of dragons. The creature at the head of my own list might well be - the Dragon of Obscene Size. Companies that are too big - countries that are too big - men or women who wield too much power - these are the dragons that I wish to sink my spiritual spear into.

A Knight of Gaia can be either man or woman, or anything in between. The only qualification to become a Knight will be:

The willingness to take a vow, out loud and with sufficient conviction to convince the listeners, to a quorum of six Knights of Gaia. The vow will be something like the following, although when there are more Knights than there are now the form of it might be modified:

'I vow that I will devote my energies, during the whole of my life on Earth, to protecting the integrity, variety, and beauty of Earthly Life, and to vanquishing the forces of evil that threaten to destroy it.'

If the listening Six are convinced of the sincerity of the postulant, she/he will be admitted into the Order. It will then be the new Knight's duty to: study, in depth, the issues involved, to take any action possible to conserve and aid the Life on our planet, to avoid any action that damages it, to try to convince other people of the seriousness of the situation and of the need to take action about it.

The Order is already founded. There are at present five Knights (male and female) and as they are too few and dispersed to make a quorum, they are to have the power of creating other Knights until the Order is larger. It is then hoped that there will be local Chapels, where Knights can meet and encourage each other.

But do not become a postulant unless you are deadly serious. The dragons that we must fight are serious - very.

Sir John Seymour KOG, Killowen, New Ross, Co. Wexford, Eire (tel 353 51 88156).

Since writing this article Sir John has grown too busy running his farm and Self-Sufficiency courses to continue running the Order. From March '96, the order has been run by Mog-Ur Kreb Dragonrider, a Knight of Gaia who earned his spurs fighting the Newbury Bypass dragon. Mr. Dragonrider is keen that the KOG remain an active order. He is hoping to encourage the formationm of local chapters where Knights may meet for workshops, lectures and recreation. He also plans to start a newsletter, and has more recently been protesting against the Trident Nuclear Missile system.

Sir Kreb Dragonrider KOG may be contacted by visiting the Knights of Gaia website at www.knightsofgaia.org

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