Thursday, July 27, 2006
Michael Francis Itkin
The two copies of Manroot which I'm moving out of my collection and which are excerpted from below belonged originally to a character called Michael Francis Itkin aka Rt Rev'd Itkin - Mar Itkin and St Mikael of California.
One copy has his ownership signature in it, the other had his bookplate, which has since come away from the inside front cover.
I know a little about Autocephalus and Old Catholic churches and sects and clearly Itkin found his place amongst them. I've never come across one quite so, what's the word?, syncretist, as the Moorish Orthodox Church of which Itkin was a bishop and now saint. On the face of it, their website (from which most of the information below is taken) appears to be that of a straightforward sect of the old catholic church but take a look around and it leads you, through all kinds of colourful characters to all kinds of colourful places; links on their front page take you off to the 'Union of Radical Magi' and the 'Writings of His Holiness, Patriarch Hakim Bey' (Bey is otherwise known as the anarchist writer, Peter Lambert.
It's one of those Internet sites, utterly serious in intention, which leads to places fascinating and strange to most people, and yet vaguely attractive in their own baroque way.