Tonight an announcement went up on a forum for an event I am attending that has left me thinking a lot about how to handle delicate situations at sex-positive events.
In this case, my very favorite kinky camping event is going to be including a very involved Midsummer's "night of spirit, energy, ritual and celebration." This will be taking place in the middle of the event, taking over the center of the campground, and will be attended by a significant majority of the attendees at the event. It is planned by some people who I know make spirituality a major part of their lives, and is being enthusiastically received by many of those who will be at the campground that weekend.
I have to be honest, my gut reaction to this annoyance. A big part of why I started this blog is actually related to events like this - the skeptical, rational, and non-spiritual people in the sex positive world are completely invisible and ignored at events like this. The idea that anyone could possibly be uncomfortable with this simply doesn't occur to people.
However, this particular event loudly proclaims itself as "radically inclusive" and I really DO want that to include being inclusive of spirituality. I would not want those who want to celebrate the summer solstice as a spiritual event to feel unwelcome either.
So where is the ground that can be welcoming to those who are pagans or similarly spiritual, but not alienate those who are not believers, or who subscribe to a more traditional religion? After all, it would not be acceptable to traditional Christians, Jews, or Muslims to attend something like this either and they are also welcome at this camp should they choose to come.
Perhaps one option is to include a scientific or skeptical event that weekend at a different time (to allow people to attend both). If I were more experienced with astronomy I'd hold a star-party, since the view there is very nice, but alas I don't have the experience or the equipment for that to work. Maybe just a "Skeptics Meet-Up" at a different time would be one option.
I'd love to hear any other ideas.