Thank you for expressing interest in joining the Hudson Valley Bakcheion’s virtual community.
We are a diverse group of polytheists who have come together to worship Dionysos and his Retinue through an annual cycle of nine festivals. Additionally we will be sharing our thoughts, experiences and personal practices and collaborating on a variety of devotional projects – including hosting our own semiregular spiritual retreats. Periodically I will offer classes and other training to the group.
Membership is open to anyone anywhere (though if you’re in the area and would like to attend our Hudson Valley Bakcheion home events do let me know), provided you meet the following criteria:
- We are a semiformal group. Meaning things are pretty laid back, free-spirited, fun, we don’t have a bunch of complicated rules, and when things get heated we try to de-escalate the situation rather than enact swift and harsh punishment. However, everyone should remember that this is the online annex to the Hudson Valley Bakcheion and therefore space that has been consecrated to Dionysos and his Retinue. Treat it accordingly. Basically what it all comes down to is don’t be a dick and especially don’t say and do things that are inimical to the Bacchic ethos and we should all get along just fine.
- As the steward of our Bacchic temple my word is law. Challenge that in any way and you will be removed, especially if you’re acting like a dick. The only exception to this is if it’s serious enough to warrant taking it outside to a respected and impartial diviner and I am found to be in error. (I’m human; it happens!) However, behavior counts so if you’re acting like a dick you’ll still be booted no matter how right you are. If proper reparation is made I may consider letting you back in, but there will not be a third incident.
- No voyeurs. If you’re here, you’re here to worship and fellowship with us. Only you can determine the level of engagement that you’re comfortable with but if you suddenly go silent I’m going to contact you to see what’s up and how we can improve the situation. (Conflicting obligations suck, but there’s often a workaround.) Ultimately if there is no change you will be removed and have to re-apply to join the group when you are ready and able to participate.
- No atheists, agnostics, monotheists or adherents of other reductionist theologies. This is not a social club, debating society or LARPing guild. We are here to keep the festivals of Dionysos and his Retinue. If you cannot affirm the existence of these Gods and Spirits then you cannot in good faith participate in the cycle of reciprocity which lies at the heart of all we do and are. Therefore you have no reason to be here. Teaching is also not the primary purpose of this group, so if you’re on the fence go and read the content on the Bakcheion website until you feel that this is indeed something you’d like to actively participate in, and then consider reapplying.
- No politics. Seriously – NO POLITICS. In fact, keep everything that doesn’t belong in temple space outside of here. I’m not going to boot you for slipping up. It happens, and the lines can get kinda blurry, especially when no part of our lives go untouched by our Gods and Spirits. But if I inform you that I have determined that a conversation is crossing a line I expect it to end immediately. If it doesn’t you can expect to be removed from the group. It is my job to maintain the sanctity of this space so that people can have safe, healthy, powerful and transformative encounters with Dionysos and his Retinue – and I take that responsibility very seriously. We don’t need pollution, division, contention and corrosive external influences mucking this place up when we have a lofty goal such as ours, now do we?
If you find these conditions acceptable send me an email (at email@example.com) stating as much, along with your answers to the following:
- What is your background with Dionysos and his Retinue?
- What other Gods and Spirits do you honor?
- Why do you want to keep this festival cycle with us?
- What other ways can you contribute to the group?
- Five random facts about yourself.
- Ask me a question.
If you would like a wall calendar with the dates converted for 2020 e.v. please include your mailing address.
Once I have read through your responses I may or may not have follow-up questions. When I am confident that you will make a good addition to the group you will be given access to our forum.