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A letter from John Norman, accompanying the release of Witness of Gor, on August 16, 2002.

TopThe Herd Need Not Be King

My dear friends:

You will never know, nor can I adequately express, what you mean to me. We will, for the most part, never meet, nor see one another, or talk to one another, but we are together, despite all that, and we are friends. That is possible. That is real. Too, this is not so strange.

Have we not thrilled to the songs of poets who lived while lions bestrode the canopied, stained sands of the Coliseum, who wrote before Leif Ericsson beached his ship on the green shores of Vinland, who died before the first cannonade was discharged at Waterloo? Are we not their friends? I should like to think so. To care for someone, to rejoice that they lived - is that not to be their friend? So one does not have to know one another to be friends.

I hope we are friends.

So what is happening here, now, in this obscure corner of history? Something, one supposes - but for a few, for us. It seems, unaccountably, a book may be published, another song in the Gorean cycle, after long years of slander, calumny, denigration, vituperation, blacklisting, and censorship. Have you been patient? I have refused to surrender, to submit, to yield, to compromise the integrity of the Gorean vision. Better it die than be betrayed. I wonder if our enemies can understand that? I suspect not. The hounds of hatred are still afoot.

I find it hard to understand them. Are we such reproach to them? Can they not forgive us for refusing to enter and share their smalI, dark, ugly world? It seems not.

I worry.

There are more of them than there are of us. But the herd need not be king. There is a role, surely, for the hunters, the wanderers, the nomads, the different ones, the lonely ones, the seekers of less trodden paths and greener fields. They will try to suppress us, to destroy us. For years they have tried. They may yet be successful.

But if they are successful, what would be left? Only the desolate flats, the arid deserts, of conformity. How ashen, narrow and sterile is the tedious, platitudinous world they would impose on us! They want us to be free - free to be just like them. But perhaps we would rather be free - to be just like us. Liberty is not so terrible; it only seems so to those who fear it. The virus of hate is abroad.

Our defenses are several, and formidable, the blasting winds of honor, the distance of disdain, the heights of contempt, the sunlight of truth, the approbative collegiality of nature. So here is a book. Words, but swords and flames, and signals, and cries in the darkness, and reminiscences of brighter, better times, of times before the houses of a once-promising genre were turned into ideological brothels, peddling the polities of intellectual incarceration.

It is my hope that you will enjoy the book. How many honest books have you read lately?

I wish you well,
John Norman

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