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LeCastor

Leadership Through Service and Togetherness

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This is an Order of the Arrow video depicting the first initiation sequence but I believe the message transcends the OA sub-forum. We can all learn from the three tasks demanded in the video. Please have a look and then take a moment to reflect on the messages given by E. Urner Goodman and Caroll Edson:

 

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I'm not sure what the point of this old video is. Is it a reenactment of the way it used to be at least in the beginning? Is it the fact that the OA has come full circle and is going back to the robes? The scout oath and law covers everything here.

My Ordeal (please forgive me for using a word that means abuse) was meaningful as presented years ago. The use of Native American themes were meaningful as presented years ago. 

But thank God we're cleaning everything up by removing all references and symbolisms of Native Americans. The OA has become the BSA's "service club." I can't promote that in the troops that I serve. I can't defend the fact that it's all about free labor. The scouts aren't dumb. They have better things to do on a weekend.

Oh yeah, our lodge has disbanded our dance team. Like when they disbanded all of the chapter ceremonial teams, they're hoping everyone will come over to the lodge ceremony team. And do what. The new ceremony? In a scout uniform? That's special. Makes me want to spend several weekends a year sweating it out at camp doing the dirty work. Have at it.

sst3rd

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My first reaction was a chuckle when the scouter threw a match and the fire instantly started.  

Generally, I thought the video was very good and the lessons very meaningful.

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Hi all,

The reason I posted this video was not to critique the video itself. Rather, it was to reflect on the messages given within the video. @sst3rd, I can sense you are having some conflicts with the present state of the OA and I can appreciate your point of view. However, my takeaways from the video are:

1) good leaders give a hand to others, lifting them up and helping them achieve common goals and

2) we are stronger together, not divided. 

Thank you for your thoughts on the OA, though. There has been a significant change in many facets of the program and your concerns are valid. My home Lodge went through some rough times earlier this year and it was hard for many long-timers to come to terms with change. Personally, I miss the OA of my youth but I know its an evolving thing and nothing ever stays the same over time. 

Thank you, everyone, for your dedication to Scouting and today's young people. What we do here is much bigger than ourselves. Perhaps some of you have been involved for long enough that your Scouts return 10-20 years later to thank you for doing something you felt was insignificant at the time. What we are doing in our Scouting roles, however trivial it may seem, is impacting the lives of our youth and that is what makes a huge difference in our collective futures.

Edited by LeCastor
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Maybe get rid of the arrow and all things native american and go back the the Roman roots of western civilization and wear black Roman magistrate robes and call themselves the "Order of Fasces" make the fasces symbol (bundle of sticks with an ax) found on the back of the US Mercury Dime the new symbol of the new order.   

Together we are stronger,  like a bundle of sticks.  

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Notice the two bundles of sticks on the wall behind the seat for the US Speaker of the House. 

house-speakers-rostrum.jpg

 

and old Ab Lincoln has the bundles of sticks on his chair:

 

Lincoln-statue-web.jpg

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2 hours ago, cocomax said:

Maybe get rid of the arrow and all things native american and go back the the Roman roots of western civilization and wear black Roman magistrate robes and call themselves the "Order of Fasces" make the fasces symbol (bundle of sticks with an ax) found on the back of the US Mercury Dime the new symbol of the new order.   

Together we are stronger,  like a bundle of sticks.  

 

The "Order of Fasces" would sound too close to fascism.

Edited by Thunderbird

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1 hour ago, Thunderbird said:

 

The "Order of Fasces" would sound too close to fascism.

Especially after Fascist Italy coped all the Imperial Roman Imagery during their regime. 

Native American imagery was the right move for the OA at it's founding. It was something distinctly American. I think the OA has some bigger challenges facing it than what symbols it uses. @sst3rd summed it up pretty well. I liked the video. I remember hearing something similar, but I can't remember where I heard that story of the first OA ceremony. Good stuff.

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If using "the lesson of the fasce" (bundle of tied sticks that are stronger together) reminds people of the Fascists and their symbolism, then yes it would be a bad idea for the OA to use that lesson anymore.. 

But remember, the OA was founded before Fascist Italy made the fasce into a bad thing.

Before Fascist Italy messed things up it used to mean a positive thing in the USA,  it represented the states of the union bound together into a powerful country.   

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I think the lesson is fine.  I just wouldn't use the word "fasce" or anything close to it.  Some people will take it the wrong way and associate it with fascism.  They won't care about the history.

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Ever try to tear a phone book in half (what's a phone book?  yeah, yeah...).   The secret to this stunt is to NOT try from the binding side, but from the open edge side,  fan the pages out so as to start tearing each page at it's edge separately. 

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On 12/30/2018 at 10:21 PM, cocomax said:

If using "the lesson of the fasce" (bundle of tied sticks that are stronger together) reminds people of the Fascists and their symbolism, then yes it would be a bad idea for the OA to use that lesson anymore.. 

But remember, the OA was founded before Fascist Italy made the fasce into a bad thing.

Before Fascist Italy messed things up it used to mean a positive thing in the USA,  it represented the states of the union bound together into a powerful country.   

As Thunderbird points out, people do not care about history. Just as people today do not remember that the OA was founded before Native Americans were citizens, who could not speak their languages or perform their religious and social ceremonies in the open, and thus the OA worked with Native American nations to preserve their heritage, no one will remember the original meaning of the fasces. They will only remember Mussolini and his use of the fasces and his work with Hitler.

 

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12 hours ago, SSScout said:

Ever try to tear a phone book in half (what's a phone book?  yeah, yeah...).   The secret to this stunt is to NOT try from the binding side, but from the open edge side,  fan the pages out so as to start tearing each page at it's edge separately. 

No, the secret is to tear it down the binding. :)

@Eagle94-A1, I wonder if the mystique of black robes or Native Americans is just a place holder for introspection about brotherhood and service. Isn't this really the motivation behind giving? We do it for a higher purpose, something bigger than we are. Without that motivation the service is just a job.

I agree that the OA sort of morphed into cheap labor for the camps or putting on arrow of light ceremonies. It gets back to the same old thing. The scouts get a lot more out of something if they decide what it is they do. If the chapter advisor just gives the scouts a list of tasks they need to do then the mystique is gone. But if the scouts own their service, and it's at the district or council level, then I think it's a big learning opportunity.

My guess is this is @LeCastor's point. It's not so much the OA as it is motivation for service. It takes brotherhood and a sense of something bigger than we are. This is something that gets lost in advancement. The guy talking in the video about doing your best and the scouts paying attention seems like such a small thing but it really brought me back to when I was tapped out. Maybe we need more discussion on how to do that.

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Posted (edited)

Symbolism, ceremonies, and shifting societal/cultural values aside, there are two aspects of the OA's successful past that the BSA completely controlled, yet deliberately moved away from:

1.  The OA was the society of honor campers (outdoor-minded first and foremost).

2.  Inductees were few in number, thus keeping membership exclusive, a true honor to be selected.

The first step must be a return to the original criteria--honor campers, few in number.

Edited by desertrat77
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