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Originally posted by D377MC
What to add? The odds that this was done on purpose seem to be increasing daily...
He was a member of the very influential Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a British secret society active at the end of the 19th and in the early 20th century. Its members included the Satanist, occultist, Cabalist, magician Aleister Crowley, a Freemason of the Old and Accepted Order of the Scottish Rite.
He called himself "The Great Beast 666". It means that Meyrink was frequenting circles which welcomed the Apocalypse, which is exactly what he describes in "Petroleum, Petroleum": An apocalypse. And a planned apocalypse.
In Meyrink's story, the perpetrator is motivated by blind hatred of humanity: The destruction of the "crowd" was seen by Meyrink/Jessegrim as possible only through a "god-given scourge" - meaning, the oil apocalypse.