Darkover® Grand Council Meeting

November 23-25, 2012


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In Ridgley Room 2

DarkoverCon Esoteric Track

Sponsored by Ecumenicon Fellowship and the Order of St. Michael

The Esoteric Track at DarkoverCon was established more than 10 years ago to give an opportunity for people to talk about the "real-world" religions and techniques behind magick and energy work in SF and Fantasy. Ecumenicon and the Order of St. Michael have shared responsibility for this program and always offer classes from several religious perspectives. The theme of DarkoverCon 35 this year is Diversity.

Esoteric Track Schedule

Ecumenicon Fellowship is responsible for this track at the Darkover® Science Fiction convention, held Thanksgiving Weekend of every year at the Crowne Plaza in Timonium, MD. http://darkovercon.org/ for info. You must be a registered member of that convention to attend. All classes are in the Esoteric space (the last room across from the elevators next to the Gaming Booth) unless otherwise specified. If you are interested in teaching next year, go to the Ecumenicon Table in the Dealers area.


2:00 PM - Setting the Wards. Creating a safe space for spiritual classes for the weekend. Any teachers and students on site.

3:00 PM - Ancestor Altar. Have you lost someone you have loved any time in your life? We will be setting up a sacred altar for use throughout the Con, with its culmination the Falling Stars ritual on Saturday. Come and think about your loved ones, light a yartzeit candle or leave a bead on the mosaic for remembrance. Craft table will be left up throughout the Con. (Charles Butler leads formal set up)

4:00 PM - Shabbat Discussion & Candle Lighting. Seeking teacher.

5:00 PM - Fantasy without Faith. The Hunger Games was an example of a culture that made a choice to have no visible faith. Dystopia and difference. A panel discussion. Rosanna Tufts and others.

6:00 PM - Grounding, Anchoring, Centering, Shielding. Charles Butler Neto. How to get through a conference without being psychically fried. Useful techniques for beginners; even "old hands" might get some new ideas.

7:00 PM - Divination. Tea & Sympathy. Share your ideas, your teaching, your techniques with others. Tea, cookies, chocolate, carrots. (2 hours)

9:00 PM - Again Dangerous Meditations. For a mature audience, no one under 18 admitted. Exercises for the advanced student. Discussion and then exercise of processes not often taught. Not for beginners are those currently in emotional crisis. (Tamar Lindsay.)

10:00 PM - Healing Circle. Charles Butler Neto & Others. All are welcome to share their spiritual gifts. All healing circles are welcome, from laying on of hands to prayer from many faiths. This space for this time is fragrance free. (2 hours)


9:00 AM - Tai Chi. Personal DVD of Tai Chi Instructor.

10:00 AM - Faith in Walls. Prison Ministry for Minority Faiths. Charles Butler Neto shares his experience of the Federal and State prison system. Pen pals or faith representatives welcome.

11:00 AM - Sharing Spirituality with Young Children. How to be authentic and respect the child and the teaching. (LuAnn Day)

12:00 NOON - Consider Editing Your Life. Pagan / Interfaith / Christian / Jewish outreach for those who cannot make it to a worship home. Tapping into community resources. Helping others, even though you have barely a few coins to rub together. (Karen MacLeod).

1:00 PM - Main Programming, Guest of Honor Speech. No Esoteric instruction against this event.

2:00 PM - Ecumenicon Business Meeting. Open meeting for those wondering about the Fellowship which runs this track. Ideas and memberships are welcome. Please bring writing paper and pens/pencils with you.

3:00 PM - Vedic Astrology 101. Why make the switch to the Hindu system that's based on the sidereal zodiac? How can it help you resolve the riddle of your Karma? (Rosanna E. Tufts)

4:00 PM - Ancestors 101. How to set up a place to honor your ancestors. Why have an altar? Why speak to them? (Lady Luna Rose)

5:00 PM - Falling Stars Memorial. Tovah. Originally started as an AIDS Memorial, this service now honors all who have passed this prior year in fandom, personal families, or beyond, particularly of chronic illness. Come and make your star. (Tovah and others)

6:00 PM - Clergy Clatch. Do you have "Clergy" stamped in invisible ink on your forehead? Do you find yourself being an automatic counselor/spiritual confidant? Whether formally ordained or not, no matter what your faith tradition, this meeting is for you. All are welcome. Annual reunion.

7:00 PM - Puja to Lord Shiva. Let Lord Shiva burn away the illusions of your life, in this Sanskrit ritual with English translation. (Rosanna E. Tufts)

8:00 PM - The Practice of Sudhana. Sadhana is a daily spiritual practice from yoga philosophy. Meditation, chanting, visualization, and yoga positions done in a seated position. (Rik Fire)

9:00 PM - Main Programming, CLAM CHOWDER. (2 hours)

Midnight - Healing Circle. Midnight Circle. This space may have incense. All who are looking for healing or guidance are welcome.


9:00 AM - Alternate Programming, Christian Mass. (Offered by the Order of St. Michael for all present.) (2 hours)

10:00 AM - Turning of the Year. Celebrating our Ancestors and New Births for the year.

11:00 AM - Obsession & Renunciation: The Moon's Nodes and You. Often overlooked in Western astrology, wherever the Moon's Nodes show up, is where your buttons really get pushed. How do you transcend their pull on you, by "releasing the serpent"? (Rosanna E. Tufts)

12:00 NOON - My Journey with the Scribes. Spiritual journaling as a technique. The teacher's journey to the Nile and the temples of Isis & Sekhmet. Exercises for your own path. (Rik Fire)

1:00 PM - Introduction to Shamanic Journeying. A shamanic journey connects you with spiritual allies and helpers. Participants will have the opportunity to practice this technology led by the heartbeat of the drum. Bring an eye covering and a journal. (Rik Fire)

2:00 PM - Esoteric Space, Closing the Wards, Clearing the Space. All instructors and students on site. All Welcome.


Ecumenicon Fellowship is a multi-faith church founded in Maryland in We have held a multi-faith conference every year since that time, and have added workshops at Darkovercon for more than 15 years. Ecumenicon Fellowship strives to welcome the variety of human spiritual experience to its forums and house-based churches now located in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, with participants in the U.S., Brazil, and Ireland.

Charles Butler Neto (Esoteric Track Chair) s the co-founder of Ecumenicon Fellowship and current director of the Esoteric track for Darkovercon. He is currently working with Wiccan and Santeria groups in several prisons, and will be leaving for Brazil in January for further training in Umbanda, Candomble, and related traditions. Email: chazzer3332000 @ yahoo.com. Mailing address: Charles Butler, 3205 Kimberly Road, Hyattsville, MD 20782-3722.

LuAnn Day is a ministerial intern with Ecumenicon Fellowship and an active home-schooling parent.

Rev. Rik Fire MSW,LCSW,LISW is an ordained interfaith minister and trustee of Ecumenicon Fellowship. He is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker in the states of PA, Iowa, and Lousiana; a Reiki Master & an Advanced Certified Shamanic Practitioner. Rik works for a national managed behavioral health care company; has a private holistic healing practice housed at the Village of Radikal Healing. He is working on a Doctorate in Holistic Nutrition and Natural Health.

Tamar Lindsay is a teacher of meditation with more than 20 years training through a private mystery school. Her spirituality is largely Buddhist.

Karen MacLeod has been a freelance editor since 1977, including Jane Sibley's novel The Hammer of the Smith and Sime~Gen fandom. She is a 3rd Degree priestess in Western Transformational Wicca moving from "wounded healer" to "healed healer". She is currently caring for critically ill neighbors. She was born into the disabled community, and has been an advocate of therapeutic horseback riding for many years. For editing help, reach her at kMacLeod323 at aol dot com.

The Order of St. Michael is an ecumenical, esoteric Christian community oriented toward knowledge (gnosis) and spiritual growth. The Order has Pagan and Jewish Associates as well.

Debera Rothschild (Tovah) grew up in a conservative Jewish household. Although she never has forgotten where her roots are, at the death of her father, her religious belief system was shaken. Debera went back to the commandment of "Question Everything," and started incorporating some of the philosophies she was learning into her belief of "Life, Universe, and Everything."

Rev. Patricia Taylor (Lady Luna Rose) is Sacristan (Minister of Sacred Environment) in Ecumenicon Fellowship. Her focus is on home and solitary worship, helping others to live a daily faith. She participates with her husband in a weekly role play at the Game Parlor in Chantilly, VA.

Rosanna E. Tufts is the Minister of Music and Dramatic Arts for the Ecumenicon Fellowship, Vedic astrologer, Certified Handwriting Analyst, Composer of the rock opera "The Passion of Persephone," author of "Windfall! Taming the Jealousy Monster when You or a Relative Comes into Money," host of "The Tufts Get Going" radio show on www.pwnradio.net, and President of Catonsville ToastMasters. www.RosannaTufts.com, (443) 860-9604.

Guest of Honour

    Nalo Hopkinson

  • Nalo Hopkinson
  • Artist
    Guest of Honour

    Samantha Haney Press

  • Samantha Haney Press
  • Musical
    Guests of Honour

    Clam Chowder

  • Clam Chowder
  • and
    Special Guest

    Katherine Kurtz

  • Katherine Kurtz