Manage episode 328566253 series 2634748
Remember, we welcome comments, questions and suggested topics at thewonderpodcastQs@gmail.com
(Transcripts note: The transcript is currently a little rough, I need to edit it for errors and add speaker labels. We currently are on the road headed back home from the retreat, but I wanted to still get the episode up for you at the regular time. Corrections will be made over the next week to make reading easier - Yucca)
Welcome back to the Wonder: Science-based Paganism. I'm your host mark and I'm Yucca. And today we are recording live at the Suntree retreat, which is the first in-person conference gathering of non theist pagans in the atheopagan community here in Colorado Springs, Colorado USA.
And so we're going to be interviewing people here about their experience and you know, how they're enjoying it and what brought them to non-thesis paganism, all that kind of stuff. So it's going to be kind of a free form podcast this time, rather than one centered around a topic.
Right. And we are recording out outside of the dining hall with a little bit of wind.
So we appreciate everybody's patience with the audio today. And we also have some folks joining us on the zoom call as well, which I don't think we've ever had this many people before.
Right. So, if you'd like, say hi, if you want to introduce yourself and where you're from, just to kind of put a word in, we welcome that as well.
What do you want us to introduce ourselves? So, hi, I'm Addie. My pronouns are she, her and I live in Northwestern, Vermont, a little bit north of Burlington where it is currently 86 degrees in may, which is bizarre. And I'm happy to see everybody. I'm glad to hear you're having a good time. Thanks.
Thank you for joining us. And if anyone else wants to jump in, yeah, go ahead. I'm Bethany and I'm from Sacramento and the high today is going to be 91. Oh.
I'm Glenn in Los Angeles, the high today is supposed to be 94. And on my morning walk today, I discovered I'm in a little city called Monterey park. It's the east end of LA county. And I never would have guessed that my silly little city would have one of those little like mailbox size libraries, but I discovered one and I've never read Daniel Steele.
I don't think it's probably something that I actually want to read, but I'll read a chapter and see how it goes. But that was a pretty exciting to see that just in the middle of a residential area. Nice.
Oh, hi Martin. I'm from the north of the Netherlands. And currently it's 63 Fahrenheit with max or today what? 66. It's currently past 8:00 PM here. So it's completely different.
Hello, I'm Bislama Buena my pronouns. Are he him? I'm currently living in college station, Texas working on my PhD at a and M. And the weather right now is 88 degrees. So, and it's pretty hot and warm here. Yeah. Well, we have beautiful weather here in Colorado Springs. It's probably low seventies right now.
You don't want to be out in the sun because it's high elevation and it really, you know, it burns into you pretty fast, but the air just feels super silky and nice. And we have a very nice view of Pike's peak and the black forest surrounding it. So it's a pretty nice place to broadcast from.
It can be really unpredictable this time of year may, could be snowing, could be sweaty and hot and really windy. So jump on in here, come around to the side so that we can have you in the mic.
Yep. Yeah. We've never done this live before.
Hello everybody. It's good to see you. So do you want to introduce yourself real quick? So we have someone joining us slide. My name is Glenn Gordon. I've been a part of the naturalistic nontheistic pagan community for awhile. And over the last two years of COVID, I started joining the north mixers and it's just been really exciting to see a lot of the familiar faces that you guys have seen on the mixers together.
And we've had some really good ceremonies I've been posting on the Facebook page a little bit. So if you want to kind of get a little bit more of a feel or details of how that's going, you can find that on the Facebook group, you can also find me posting things on Twitter and Instagram and tumbler as atheo Druid.
But I just, yeah, I just wanted to find a way that you guys could somehow experience a little bit of what's going on here because we, we do miss your presence.
If anybody has any questions. Go ahead. Thanks, Glen. And it's, it's wonderful to have you here. Yeah, you've been participating in atheopagan things for a very long time. Now it's gotta be like eight years or something. Which for us is a long time. You know, that's, that is not long after our founding.
So, welcome. So Glenn, what do you think of the events so far? What, how are you? Glen Gordon. How do you, how are you liking this?
I think mostly I'm getting this. I mean, there is a sense of community that we have really built online and I think we've done so in a way, better than other groups that I've involved with that have tried similar things, but just being here, you know, in person and, you know, seeing those familiar people and being in the same space, ritually just adds this depth.
Like when we're doing a ritual online, you know, they're, they're really fun and engaging, but you know, when you're in person in a, in a ritual, there's just a depth, we can't, we just can't capture with the digital technologies. But yeah, I just feeling overwhelmed with yeah. With that sense of that sense of community.
And I'm very glad that I could be here and it makes a lot of. What we've been doing and the things that we've been talking about for a long time, feel so much more tangible to me in some ways. And, and it's just I was just so excited to have seen what started off as just this little tiny, like enclave of bloggers, you know, there's me and mark.
And we had John Cleveland host, who is the editor for naturalistic paganism. A little workshop about the year the wheel of the year. So it's a little, there's a little bit of a surreal, it's a realness to it too. Yeah. I, I echo that it is a little surreal when, you know, I've, I've seen these faces on the screen so many times, but now they're, they're actually eating in the dining hall behind me.
They're, they're here and, you know, after our rituals last night, we hung out and drank some wine and talked about things and, you know, socialize deep into the night. So it's it's really pretty cool.
So Hannah, did you want to step in? Okay. It would be, it would be to take over Glen's there. It was great to see you all. And I hope that maybe I get to see some of you here again. And when we do this in 2024.
Thanks Glenn. You can pause the bike just with the cat
and now we have HANA.
Hello? Okay. Figure it out the mute. Hi everyone. It's so good to see you all.
So, do you have any thoughts about Suntree retreat about how that's, how that's going for you and what you're looking forward to coming up on the schedule and stuff like that? Right. Well, it's been a really lovely experience so far.
I just getting to be in the same space as people who, when we've been talking about the essence of this kind of pagan expression being rooted in a sense of place, and then having us all dispersed everywhere, which is very cool, but being able to come together and actually share a space together has has been amazing.
So is as far as what I'm looking forward to Michael and I are doing a workshop this afternoon, really, it's more Michael's than mine, but I'll be helping with with. Art's, you know, it's an opportunity for people to do creative projects and I I just am excited to see what people are going to be inspired by and how that will be expressed.
So, yeah, it's great to be here. Cool. Cool. Well, it's wonderful to have you here. You've been a regular on the Saturday mornings zoom mixers that we do. And it's just so inspiring to meet folks like you in person after years of interacting online. Well, likewise it's and it's really been fun to meet folks who have been connected to this community, like through the discord, which I haven't spent a lot of time on.
And folks here in Colorado who have just sort of had an opportunity because it's near them, they've had an opportunity to check it out and aren't as actively involved in the online community. So it's getting a chance to both see some lovely, familiar faces and neat, some brand new people who are just super cool and have so many interesting stories and beautiful ceremonial flares to, to bring to the, the fire circle.
And so yeah, it's. A lot of fun. Yeah. That's very well said. I've really feel the same way. It's exciting to come together in this way and to realize that our community has matured enough, that there there's a critical mass of people that will actually travel in some cases, you know, thousands of miles in order to come and do this.
It's pretty cool.
I hope that we, while we continue planning future. Opportunities together. I do hope though, that we keep our online practices and community flourishing, because it's also so lovely to have the opportunity on a regular basis to be able to connect with people in different countries and different parts of the world.
And and of course, Traveling is expensive and not everybody can afford it. And so, it's, it's a great blessing that we have an online community that lets us do things communally even at distances.
Absolutely. I mean, that was one of the silver linings of COVID that we started doing all of this zoom connection.
And I mean, I certainly don't have any intention of stopping doing that. Even if the pandemic is waning you know, we have a real online community and it, it feels like that. And it's, it's, you know, I'm always excited for the Saturday mixer. Who's going to show up this week and you know, what are we, what, what cool conversations are we going to have?
All right. Well, I am going to go ahead and pass the mic on with gratitude to you, mark, and to Yucca and to everybody who helped make this conference possible. And also with gratitude to people who listened to this podcast who aren't here, but are part of the larger AP if you'll pagan community and make it this wonderful creative space that it is.
So thank you all. Thank you, Hannah. Thank you for being part of it.
Hi. You want to introduce yourself? Yes. My name is Kaylee and I am new to atheopagan ism and I'm excited to be here. Cool. Cool. Well, thank you for being here and welcome. Welcome to the wonder. It's it's really kind of an amazing experience for me having, you know, met a bunch of these people online over the years, and now they're, they're here in person live attaching names to faces, and it's just such a cool experience.
What are, how are you feeling about, about the Suntree retreats? So. Oh, it's so beautiful. I'm just like looking out and seeing all the trees and Pike's peak and I'm native to Colorado, but I've never been this close. I think I usually go to different mountain ranges, so it's so beautiful. And I think it's really cool to talk about that online community, but I'm somebody who like hasn't been involved in that online community so much.
I don't really socialize there very often, so it's really cool to meet people in person as part of the community without having that background either. Everyone's really open and accepting. It's very cool.
Well, it's great to have you here. I mean, I'm just, I'm remembering from, from last night's fire circle, you know, everyone's contributions and their, you know, they, these really special moments of song and poetry and stories and observations about what's going on in life.
And you know, I'm just reminded once again, that this is a really special cohort of people, I just feel so happy to be a part of it.
Yeah, absolutely need to. And it's so great to see how so many different people can meet and interact and socialize and contribute in those creative ways, because it's so difficult to do that in, you know, mainstream culture otherwise.
So it's, it's very unique and very cool to see so many different walks of life come together. Yeah. So, do you have anything that you would like to say to the podcast listeners? Oh man. This is how I kind of got introduced to the topic and to the world of atheopagan isms. So I guess I would say that if anybody is out there listening, that feels, you know, that they get a sense of community from it that there's a lot more going on behind the scenes to get involved with.
Cause it's a lot going on. Yeah, that's true. That's true. It consumes a significant chunk of my life. I'll tell you that.
Very cool. Well, I'm going to go ahead and pass it on. Okay. Enjoy lunch. Thank you.
All right. Hi my name's Teagan, and I'm glad to see all y'all spaces on here. Looking at the zoom.
So Suntree retreat, what do you think? What brought you here and how are you liking it? Yeah, it's, it's lovely out here. I escaped some of the Texas heat to get into this cool weather. But I, I really want to echo what, what folks have been saying and what you've been saying about this in person connection.
It's, it's such a big difference to meet people face to face and have real conversations with them and to sleep alongside people in a yurt is so different than, you know, commenting on a Facebook comment section. So it's, it's really got me thinking which really got me thinking forward to the future, you know, beyond the retreat, the, the in-person connections that we can continue.
So I'm really looking forward to trying to, to grow and strengthen the regional affiliate affinity groups, because I'll be in Chicago. So I want to get that kind of organized and off the ground. And I wanted to ask if, if there's ever been like conversation about organizing like, campus groups.
Cause I just graduated college yesterday and I see a huge potential for student organizers to have atheopagan clubs on their campuses. You know, you know, it probably shows how old I am, but it never crossed my mind the first time I ever thought of it. And it's a great idea. We could, you know, create some materials and you know, sort of a startup kit.
For campus groups that people could download and use as resources. That's a wonderful idea. I like it a lot. Yeah. I'd love to work on something like that because the campus groups are often used to, you know, functioning without a whole lot of resources and financial support. And it's a lot of people who are living in an already kind of a communal environment.
So I think it'd be a great opportunity for people to learn about this intersection of of this naturalists, this naturalistic pagan path and start putting these new practices because your whole life, you know, often gets approved and moving to a new city to go to college. You're away from your family having like holiday celebrations with your, your college dorm mates and cooking food together.
I think, I think if your big aneurysm has a lot to offer college students and they have a lot to offer it. Yeah. It's a wonderful idea. I really like it. And we will be talking more about this idea. I promise ASAM. Yeah, I'm, I'm seeing I'm. I feel like I'm one of the few, you know, younger folks here at third street today.
So I, I hope by the next Suntree retreat, I can see some more people around my age. I'm 22 years old right now. So I think that will be my goal for 2024. Nice. I love it.
All right, cool. Oh, and one more thing before I I'll, I'll pass it along. But last night, mark, you were talking about that society right now seems to be at a place where people are really rejecting this framework that you've been handed. And, and that the atheopagan ism is a large part of kind of reconstructing things that we were choosing to invest in.
And you know, I think young people are right there, you know, we're, we're ready to revolutionize them and radicalized. And so, yeah, definitely want to tap into that, but I, I heard you really equity that sentiment that I hear in my community is of, of young people. Nice, nice. Yeah. I think. I mean for so long.
I mean, for centuries, people have, they've had their lives kind of put on the rails, right. You go to school and at some point your school ends and then you go to a job and you do the job and then you partner up and you have kids, and it's just, you know, this formula that people didn't feel like they had a lot of choice about.
And I think we're asking a lot of questions now about, you know, what about alternative forms of families? What about alternative forms of relationships? What about what about not, you know, running on a treadmill for capitalism for, for your entire life? There, there are other ways to live and a part of what we're talking about in atheopagan ism is how can we build our lives around a different set of values that are much more affirming of who we are as people, as well as the planet.
Absolutely. Definitely agree with all of that.
I'll pass it off to the next person. Thank you.
Hello, Michael. How's it going?
Yeah, it's, it's been it's been a beautiful couple of days here so far. Nice weather and just beautiful scenery and I've been really enjoying it so far. Just getting to, getting to spend time with all of these great people. Well, thank you for your workshop this morning, and I'm really looking forward to, to doing some artistic creation stuff with you and Hannah this afternoon.
It's, you know, the, the workshops have all just been really great and entertaining and interesting and and of course the rituals and the socializing and all of that has just. Just wonderful for me. Yeah. For those who weren't there. We just had I led a workshop about how to kind of bring more ritual into your meal planning and like, how you can make meals more meaningful especially in a community setting.
So, so I gave a few examples and then I had people break into groups and make seven, a seven course meal that had like symbolism important to them. So just to kind of write up a plan for it. And it was, people came up with some really good ideas. One of my favorite ideas that came up during lash during the workshop was.
It was the theme of theme of truth. And somebody suggested creme brulee because you have to break through to get to the truth. I love it. I love it. That's great. Yeah. I was sorry. I wasn't able to be at that part. I was, I had to leave when the, when the breakout group started so that we could set up here for the podcast.
But what fun? What a cool. Yeah, we also churn some butter as well, and we're going to make some oatcakes a little later and then we'll use the butter we made to spread on the old cakes. Did the butter actually come out? I remember there was a question about whether it was the cream was staying liquid or not.
It's still, it needs a little bit more work. It's a work in progress. I think that the issue is that when you are making butter you need to leave the cream out for six to eight hours. So, and we only left it out for three hours,
so I think it was still, is it that it was too cold? Yes. Yeah. I see.
Cool. And has it's good to see other everybody else here in the call as well, unless I'm sorry, you couldn't make it, but thinking about everybody who we've had square community online for, for two years now,
Yeah. And we're going to keep doing that. I mean, not, not only the podcast, but we're going to keep doing the Saturday mixers and other online gatherings because, you know, we, we do, we have a real community that, that, you know, has people from all over the world.
So it's, it's pretty cool. But there was certainly yesterday, there was this sort of thrill of like, well, that's my goal. Michael's really here.
Yeah. It's just strange thing. People in real life after two years of video camera. Yeah.
Bethany and I met one another at a, an affinity group live meeting that we had for may day.
And it was like, yes. Okay. And that's when I met Glen Gordon for the first time. And I mean, Glenn and I had been online communicating for about eight years in one form or another, and I'd never seen him before in person. So pretty cool. I really love that. We're we're doing this in real life stuff as well as online.
Yeah. So I hope hope we have a bit people who can't make it this time and we'll see you in 2024 at our next Suntree retreat,
you can put it in your calendar. It's the first weekend in September, 2024. We don't have the bandwidth to do this every year and I don't think people can afford to come to it every year anyway.
But if you can plan for it for, you know, a year and a few months or two years in a few months from now, hopefully you'll be able to come. It'll be at the same location here north of Colorado Springs.
Yeah. Yep. Pretty cool. Very cool.
So, Michael, do you have any words of wisdom for the listeners to the podcast? I'll just reiterate what I said in my workshop, you know, don't be intimidated by trying to build a ritual practice. We already live ritually in a lot of ways. And like the meals we eat every day can be the basis for building something very meaningful. Just just consider the food that you're eating and the time of year and what you want to, maybe what you want to get out of the meal more than just nourishment.
Like, do you want to, do you want joy or do you want healing or do you want to have some fun? Like, what is, what, what are you trying to get out of the meals and bring, bring that into the meal when you're cooking it. Nice. Thank you, Michael. Yeah.
Oh, one thing, that one thing that is kind of a challenge for me here is that I live at sea level and we are now up around 7,000 feet and the air is so thin. It's just, I mean, just walking from here to where the yurts are, where I'm sleeping, I'm huffing and puffing because it's, there's just no oxygen here as far as my body's concerned.
So that's, that's really an eye-opener well, I'm going to get back to lunch and I'm going to pass back to to Yucca again. Okay. Thank you. Thanks. Great to see you, Michael. Bye.
So rounding up people and we have another person here want to jump in.
Hello. Hey, Rano welcome. Good to see all in here. You all welcome to the wonder. Thanks for. So you want to, you want to tell people who you are and what you're doing here. So I'm Ronna and I've been a part of the atheopagan group for the last two years. It's been a very long two years, as you all know, and it's just been wonderful to have this community as a sort of like grounding, especially.
The time that I joined the group was at the very beginning of the pandemic. And it was just very fortunate timing of having a sense of fellowship and community and planting all kinds of interesting seeds of ideas about meaning and creating your own meeting with. Um, Superstition, you know, I know we have a lot of discussion around things like that.
yeah. I mean, you've been a great participant for a long time. I mean, you participate in our monthly adult sex salon conversations every time. And you're often on the Saturday mixers. So you've, you've really been, you know, kind of a linchpin of the, of the online communities and it's been great to meet you in person.
Thank you. It's been very special to have that feeling of belonging. I've always kind of envied people that are religious. I was not raised religious. I've never felt religious and I've always kind of envied them that they have an easier way to have a way to find connection and community as an adult, because it is difficult, especially once you leave like college.
I think it can be really hard to make genuine, meaningful friendships. And there's a real shortcut to that when you share a faith or some kind of path with other people and I've never quite fit into the majority of other. Paths and things that are out there. So yeah, this has been very meaningful and it is wonderful to meet everyone in person and just kind of feels like a nice breath of fresh air after this long, two years of everything.
And, and I, I appreciate that the community also has a sense of holding space. Like you mentioned, the, the adult salon. I think it's important to have these held spaces to talk about things that are vulnerable and that there just aren't a lot of Places sometimes that people can talk or also get resources and information, especially given especially in American culture.
It's sometimes, sometimes there is a great access to that. So I really value that.
Well, you have been a tremendous contributor in that regard. I mean, you're just sort of a walking resource on all these wonderful, you know, on polyamory and alternative relationship forms and on, you know, and fee agentic drugs and psychedelics and just all these, you know, very interesting, very alternative very thought-provoking and kind of growth promoting things that people are doing now.
And so I just want to say how much I really appreciate, you know, your role in all of that, because I think that those monthly salons that we do have been much richer because you've been in the.
Thank you. I really appreciate that. It just, it feels really nice to feel like I belong somewhere. So thank you for having me.
Yeah. Well, anywhere I am you belong as far as I'm concerned.
Oh, thank you. It was good seeing you all.
Thanks Rhonda. I take care.
Hi, welcome to the wonder. Hello. Excuse me. I'm wearing a mask because there's pollen all over here in Colorado Springs and I am congested from all the pollen and I'm trying to, to not fall over everywhere. So hi.
You want to introduce yourself and say, you know, how you find yourself at a Suntree retreat and how you're liking it. Sure. Yeah, so my name is Kim and I've, I felt pretty lucky that the Suntree retreat was going to be held so close to where I live. I've never attended a pigging event before.
And so this is my first time doing non solo, like very expressly Pegan things for other people. And so, It made it easy for me to make the decision to, to come and attend being so close to where I live. I live in Denver and, and this is just just south of me. Yeah, but it's been really interesting.
It's cool to see all the different perspectives and different expressions of atheopagan beliefs, even among the small little group that's here. And and it's nice to be able to kind of, you know, throw ideas out and and get feedback. I have reached out to a local a local Drood group cause I'm, I'm involved in OBOD as well.
And. I wasn't, I couldn't quite get a feel on how how literally they were taking the goddess and the gods. And so I didn't feel exactly in place there, even though we share a lot of beliefs, so to come here and to express those doubts freely and openly with with other people who also. If they use the deities in their practice, it's entirely as metaphor.
And you know, being able to explore with them well, how do you, you know, strengthen that metaphor in your mind is kind of useful and to be able to bounce those ideas off people.
Yeah. I mean, I find that with every individual that I talk with, while I'm here, there's something unique, right? There's, there's, you know, some particular spin on, you know, how they do their rituals or, you know, how they look at the wheel of the year or any of those things. And to me, that's just so exciting.
Cause I really, I really think of atheopagan ism is kind of a DIY sort of path, right? It's like there's these frameworks and principles and things, but how you implement it is entirely up to you, right? Yeah. And, and it's a lot, I've kind of struggled a little bit with really bringing my attention and focus into the the pillars and the principles.
And so to be able to attend workshops where those are specifically called out has been actually helpful. That's good to know. Yeah. So, I've, like I said, I've really been focused on my druidic work and this is a great opportunity to really expand with the atheopagan focus and how can I. Bend what I've been working on to more of what you've laid out.
And there are a lot of things about the druidic principles that really integrate very well with the atheopagan concept. So I, I think there's a really rich vein to mine there. I think there's a lot of cool ways to put all that stuff together. So I was like a cool adventure. Yeah. And I know that there are a few other Druids in the group here and we've on the Facebook what is it called?
I think it's atheopagan Druids. Yeah. I was trying to remember the association side or no, the affinity side group. Yes. Affinity group. We had a discussion going, okay. Who's going to be there and let's see if we can, you know, maybe workshops some stuff and try to try to kind of put in our atheopagan principles into some of our Druid rituals and such.
So I haven't actually gotten out and had those conversations yet, but there's still a day and a half, two days left, so yeah.
Well, thanks Kim. It's, it's great to have you here. I'm so glad to have met you in person, and it's really, it's wonderful to have you on the wonder. Thank you. It's very nice to be here on the wonder and thank you for having me. Sure.
Hi, John, you want to tell people who you are and how you got here. And what's interesting about Suntree retreat for you.
Sure, mark. Yeah. Hi everyone. I'm John Cleveland host. I have a background in the sciences and I've done a lot of research and I've also active. Developing and helping promote reality-based pagan pass and atheopagan ism is such a wonderful example of that is so great to see how well it's taken off over the years.
And to that end, I should let our listeners know that John serves John, like Yucca and myself serves on the council of the atheopagan society, which is the nonprofit organization the nonprofit religious organization that we founded a couple of years ago to help support and provide resources and writing and thinking and all that kind of stuff for atheopagan is all over the world.
So really appreciate all of your contributions, John, to, to the, the stuff that we're doing. Thanks, mark. Yeah. And to speak to you asked what I was looking forward to here. I'm looking forward to a lot of things. So a lot of the workshops looks really interesting. The one on pig and history looks interesting and the in so many other activities go beyond.
You know, just learning, but, but experiencing and living the bardic circle tonight should be wonderful. And just being here in this, in this wonderful location where we can look at the mountains and with the Pines all around us. And it's such a vibrant group of people. We've had very interesting, interesting conversations with various people about the different you know, the, the way that they're implementing atheopagan ism in their life and, and how much it's doing for them.
It's really wonderful to see in here. Yeah, I totally agree. It's it's really, I mean, it kind of makes sense that it would be inspiring for me since since I sourced a bunch of the material about atheopagan. To me, it's just so moving that people are really enriching their lives with this stuff.
You know, finding, finding more, meaning more community, more more depth in the way that they're living their lives through. Rituals and practices and observances and getting more in touch with what's happening in the natural world around them. So I just, I'm really excited about it. I think it's so cool.
Yeah, it is it exciting is a great word for that. It's exciting to see how much is there when people start to tap into these deep Wells of reality based spirituality that that can connect us all to so much more that that exists about being human. So many things that our ancestors experienced at different times and that we can still experience today.
Yeah, I completely agree. Yeah. And you, you mentioned our ancestors. I mean, I think that one thing to always keep in mind is that the wheel gets invented over and over again. Right, right, right. You know, there there's, there's a lot that our ancestors knew. You know, going way back going tens of thousands of years.
There's a lot that our ancestors knew about being connected with nature that we in our current over culture or our mainstream culture have really lost track of. And so, reinventing the wheel and going back to some of that perspective and those practices is a way for us to chart a path forward.
That's much less destructive and much more happiness inducing.
Yeah, for sure. And I think that, I think that I see errors on either side. Sometimes people can forget the, the wealth of knowledge and understanding and experience that our ancestors had and miss the some of the potential there that that can be tapped into.
And at the same time, I can also see sometimes people sometimes idolized everything about the ancestors and the way things used to be. When does there's a lot of things that are better to yeah. Yeah. I'm really not into neolithic medical care myself. Oh, right. Exactly. I mean, you're talking to someone here has had two tooth abscesses, which would have been fatal and had the whole inside of my head carved open for a brain tumor and any of those, and we wouldn't be talking here today.
So yeah, it is, it's certainly it takes attention and balance to look at each thing as it's proposed and considered to say, you know, is this, is this healthy, beneficial, longterm for human thriving and thriving of the entire web of life, our whole family tree of life on earth for each thing. And some of them are, and some of them.
Right, right. Absolutely. That's really well said. Well, thank you, John. Thank you. Great to have you on the wonder. Yeah, thanks. Great to be here at this unbelievable Suntree retreat.
Hey Robin. Hello, welcome. Yeah. You want to tell people who you are and what you do in here? So I'm Robin. I am one of the council members. I've done a couple of projects, the atheopagan book club, the if you're pigging photo share and the library that we watched too.
Right. So cool. So, what are your thoughts about Suntree retreat? It is really gorgeous. It's wonderful to see everybody in person. I love the conversations that are happening.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I'm, I'm just over the moon, just having such a good time
and I'm, I'm really excited to see what sort of our next steps might be after this, because I think some of the conversations we're having here is about the direction that we want to take and what what's going to be coming down for us in the future and what we have the capacity to do.
Does anybody here have thoughts about that,
Glen Eddy, the som any thoughts about that?
That's cool. Anything off the top of my head? Fair enough. It was asked that, say that again. Oh, I guess my question is, you know, like where do you see us going in the future? What do you think should be our, what should be our next projects? What are the things we should be working on and doing in the future?
You know, I think for me sort of promoting understanding, and, and by promoting understanding, that's an entirely different thing than proselytizing, which I think. Proselytizing in, in my, my own experience is not an effective or helpful thing for anyone ever anywhere.
It's spiritual violence personally.
I think there's, it's, it's unethical to proselytize a religion.
Fair enough. I think I'd agree with that. So definitely not that, but you know, somebody a few speakers back mentioned, you know, campus groups and you know, that doesn't have to be proselytizing, but it's, you know, the campus community, in addition to a million other kinds of groups, there are a whole bunch of religious groups.
And so if you're looking for that kind of connection, those are sort of the only choices that university campuses that I know of have. And so I think. I mean, really, to me, kind of it's living by example. It's you know, I, I don't need to preach my perspective to you, but maybe just try to live an authentic life and, and you can take it as you take it.
Yeah. It's amazing to me, how many, and I had this experience too, of finding out, like there are other people that believe the same way that I do. And that I, you know, I've seen a lot of other people coming into this communities, having that same experience, like, oh my gosh, I'm not the only one. And it'd be great for resources to be out there.
And like that knowledge to be more available, not so that we can turn everybody into atheopagan, but so that the people who are already inclined towards this path no it's an option is, would be ideal too.
Yeah. You know, I remember this is already years ago, but reading an article about, I don't know if it was just the internet generally or something specific, but the idea that, you know, if you're, if you're young and gay in San Francisco, that still could be challenging, but at least you're going to find people.
But if you're young and gay and some small town in the middle of America, you might not know a single other person who's like you. And, you know, you might think you're the only person. And, and, and so this particular article was saying that the internet was great because you could find communities, whether they were down the street from you or another state or another country.
And the same idea that you're expressing just that, you know, it's just existing and letting people have access to that option. That perspective.
Yeah, that's really well said. By the way, that was Glen in Los Angeles. Who's joining us here on the call remotely by zoom.
I also one thing that I know I really want to take into the future and what I've tried to do with the projects that I make is like, I think everybody in this community has something to share.
And it's really important to me. To make sure we're creating opportunities for them to share. Like it's, you know, it shouldn't just be sorry, mark, but it shouldn't just be mark being like, well, this is what I think. Yeah. Right. And yeah. And, and so I really like to create opportunities where it's like, Hey, you know, this is the rough format, you know, it's a book club and we're having a discussion about this.
Or you know, it's a photo share and you're taking pictures about this, but you're able to put your own spin on it and share your background. And I would really, I really hope to keep on doing projects like that in the future. And creating. Opportunities to people to share their, their knowledge and their their shrinks.
So, yeah. Great, great. Thank you for everything that you've done already for the community and that you're doing and for for that ethic. Cause I think that brings a lot to the table. There's, you know, the people here and the people in our broader community are so creative and interesting and thoughtful creating opportunities for them to weigh in is really important.
Well, thanks Robin. I think we're going to hand it back over to Yucca and wrap up the podcast.
Okay. Well it looks like folks are getting ready for the next activity.
Okay, well, maybe you and I need to run and grab some lunch real quick and things. So, but you know, mark, before we do finish up, was there anything you wanted to talk about your experience? I know you've been doing it a little bit, but this has been a long time, a long time in the making.
Have you been feeling it's fulfilling everything I hoped for honestly the, you know, the attendance is enough to really be a critical mass for the rituals and the socializing and all that kind of stuff. And the workshops are thought provoking and interesting. The people are lovely. The, the ritual that we did last night I thought was really moving, you know, people's contributions and their their creativity.
And I know that there's just so much more coming up on the schedule here. So, I'm pretty excited about the whole thing. I just think it's really cool.
Yeah. Well, it's amazing to be here, so. And I got to meet you in person. I know that was, that was fantastic. It's we've been talking for two and a half years every week or so that's been amazing.
It's been amazing to see people, you know, not just on the screen, but in, in the flesh, so,
yeah. Yeah, yeah. And it's, it's wonderful to meet your daughter. We've been having a blast. I asked her if she wanted to come on and she was going to, and then she saw some other kids and they're running around. She was excited, but then Nope.
So, well, let's finish up and get some lunch and thank you everybody for joining us and hanging out through the whole, the whole talk.
So yeah. And we will see you next week on the wonder science-based paganism.