Interaction Agreements

As participants in Nomenus meetings and online spaces, we abide by the following agreements to the best of our ability.

1. Alignment with mission. As members and friends of Nomenus, we work together to advance its mission “to create, preserve and manage places of cultural and spiritual sanctuary for Radical Faeries and their friends to gather in harmony with nature for renewal, growth and shared learning.”

2. Group focus. Nomenus meetings and online spaces exist for dialogue and collaboration among members and friends who are contributing to the work of Nomenus. To help keep discussion focused, please don’t bring in unrelated topics or post outside announcements.

3. Civility and respect. We aspire to treat each other in ways that are respectful, kind, and positive. Strong feelings and passionate points of view are welcome; blaming, flaming, and personal attacks are not. We aspire to build a culture of appreciation, accountability, constructive feedback, and trust.

4. Subject-subject awareness. We interact as equals and acknowledge the existence of multiple equally valid points of view. Especially in online interactions, where all we see is pixels on a screen, we remind ourselves that behind others’ words are living, breathing, vulnerable human beings, with feelings that are just as real as our own.

5. Consensus decision making. We commit to the communal practice of consensus decision making. We work together to find solutions that everyone can live with, and trust our group wisdom to come up with better ideas than any of us could have alone. For more on consensus, see this list of resources.

6. Assume good intentions. We try to stay low on the “ladder of inference
by giving each other the benefit of the doubt, speaking in personal rather than global terms, and asking open-minded questions before jumping to conclusions.

7. Come clear-headed. In the interest of individual presence and group clarity, we agree not to be impaired by substance use at meetings.

8. Learn from conflict. We’re learning to meet conflict with empathy and curiosity, and to let it be a catalyst for learning. In challenging or conflictual interactions, here are some things we can try:

  • Listen with the heart
  • Notice uncomfortable moments and name painful feelings
  • Practice “do-overs”
  • Ask for specific changes in behavior
  • Seek common ground, rather than getting stuck in positions
  • Step away from the computer
  • Speak with the other person directly
  • Look at and own our shit (negative feelings and unskillful behavior)
  • Call a small circle to hold a space of witness and support for all parties

9. Accountability. We agree to be accountable for our tone as well as our content, and for the impact of our actions as well as our intentions. When we receive feedback regarding our interactions, we try to learn from it.

10. Transparent and accessible process. We commit to group process that is inclusive, accessible, and transparent. This includes announcing meetings in advance, posting agendas ahead of time when feasible, keeping and posting minutes, and accommodating remote participation.

11. Co-facilitation and empowered moderation. We each take responsibility for speaking up as needed on behalf of these agreements. We trust and empower our online moderators and circle facilitators to care for our collective containers, which includes identifying repeated instances of challenging behavior, working with participants to improve it, and setting boundaries on behalf of the group.

12. Stay informed and get involved. We make the effort to read recent minutes and supporting documents posted at the Nomenus Wiki (nomenus.wikispaces.com) and talk to others who are involved. Online discussions support—but do not replace—the work that occurs at meetings of our circles.


Revision History

Last edited by StellaMarisPDX on Apr 3, 2014 11:18 am.
Reconsensed by Great Circle, March 22, 2014.
Consensed with feedback for general use by Great Circle, September 15, 2012.
Added to Nomenus Wiki by Stella Maris, September 9, 2012.
Consensed with feedback by Nomenus Rising circle, August 5, 2012.
Revised and consensed by the Communications Committee, August 1, 2012.
Drafted by the Communications Committee and submitted for community feedback, July 19, 2012.