Friday, July 30, 2010
Alright, it’s time to make ye olde sales pitch once more.
But first, some background information that you’ve all been waiting for.
SWEDA is currently an all-male private forum, consisting of two groups. The first group is the group to which I belong, of which none of the original members (not even my Wife) are still part. There are four other men in this group.
This group was once made up of the original Argonauts: Cary, Steve W., Ezra, Keith Z., Julian, and myself, as well as Nick (Ascension) and Alginojr, who (along with Keith, and two women, who left early on, though eventually came back) were at SWEDA in the very early, pre-ARGO days, before the group was named as Thessaly. Thessaly also included my Wife, Lucinda, and the mysterious Wangwei.
Cary, Julian, and Steve left this group at different times for different reasons. Ezra “graduated” when he grokked that the letting go process of SWEDA inevitably culminated in letting go of his attachments to SWEDA itself. Because of this, Ezra became the first (imaginary) “graduate.”
There are no SWEDA “graduates,” per se, because it's not a school system and there’s no actual “end” to the deconstruction process. Well, there is; but you won’t be there to receive your diploma.
A few months back, another group formed, Lemnos, which went through a similarly rocky development, until a time when what was left of Lemnos was taken into Thessaly. This coincided with a new group forming (recently named Doliones), made up of the successful Try-Outs at Anomalies Anonymous (AA), the “no-charge” area of the (still private) forum. (The AA is no longer operational.)
Still following me so far?
The remaining members of Lemnos, having kept up the SWEDA grind for several months, were then “upgraded” into Thessaly, expanding the ranks considerably. Soon after this, four of the core members of Thessaly left, reducing the ranks once again. Bizarrely, each time this happened, new arrivals also showed up at the exact time: men go out, men come in. This was timed not only to the day, but sometimes to the hour.
This indicates that SWEDA functions as a living consciousness system. As with an organism, whenever cells “die,” they are immediately replaced.
Like all organisms, it wishes to grow.
For the past year, the size of SWEDA has remained fairly constant, varying between perhaps a minimum of five and a maximum of 17 members, but keeping to an consistent average of about 10 or 12.
Its current size (following the most recent shift, pertaining to a woman’s group which lasted all of two weeks, and which I talk about on today's Vagabond Blues podcast) is ten: five inside Thessaly, and six in the new group. There is one member who belongs to both groups, so in this case, five plus six = ten.
Members of Thessaly can read and interact with the threads of the second group, Doliones, but not vice versa. The nominal leader of the second group has access to Thessaly. This is about to change, however, as I intend to allow the more long-standing members of Doliones read-only access to Thessaly. Today, in fact.
Having summed all that up, hopefully I have satisfied your curiosity enough to make you more curious than before.
As posted below, I recently decided to focus more on voice consultations, and less on text. These Skyped consultations usually run a little over an hour in length, and are recorded for the group to listen to.
With the co-operation of the group, we will be making some of these consultations public in the near future, depending on both parties’ agreements, and with the input of other group members as to which talks will make the best podcasts. This way, SWEDA can begin to extend into the public realm and become more of an open project. I began motion this with Warty Theorems, but those podcasts were done as podcasts. This will be private consultations that are then aired, if and when it’s agreed to do so. (Possibly with some editing.)
Now to brass tacks.
Signing up for SWEDA will cost you $100 for the first month. This price includes two talks with myself, that's Aeolus (consults which may or may not become podcasts), and a month of interaction at the forum with the other group members. There is no obligation to stay past the first month.
Because of this, you will not belong to either of the groups, but be in a sort of trial space where the other two groups can read and respond to your posts, even though you can’t see anything going on in their space. (A space filled up with months of soul-searching and personal disclosures.) Whether you are part of a small group of first-timers or not will depend on how many others sign up during a given month. If you choose to sign up and don't want to be doing it alone, then you can simply wait until a small group is assembled, however long that takes.
So for those who want to find out what really goes on inside the mysterious labyrinth of unbecoming that is the Stormy Weather Existential Detective Agency, you can do so now, for the cost of five trips to the grocery store, half a dozen trips to the movies, ten bottles of beer, 20 packs of smokes, or half an hour with a medium-rate hooker.
For more of what SWEDA entails, see here.
Sign up here.