September has arrived, dear listeners, which means that it's back to school for Sects Ed's co-hosts. We expect that this will inevitably influence how active we can be on social media, but rest assured that you can always contact us through e-mail or the convenient contact form on our website if you have any questions or comments about our podcast. Additionally, you can recommend an unorthodox faith that you want to learn more about for us to feature on a future episode. We'll actually be covering some listener-requested subjects in the very near future, but we'll have more updates on that next month. For now, we'll begin this month's State of the Podcast with...
As we briefly discussed in our last update, there are a number of costs associated with producing a podcast. We pay to retain ownership of our domain name and website as well as for a SoundCloud Pro Unlimited membership to host all of our audio content. In keeping with our efforts to become a self-sustaining show, we've decided to launch a Patreon campaign!
Patreon is a crowdfunding platform that allows people to contribute as little as $1 per month to content creators whose work they enjoy. You can initiate or terminate your patronage at any time, and you can contribute as much as you feel you're able. As a way of thanking all those who decide to help financially support our show, we've set up several rewards for those who contribute at $1, $3, $5, and $15 levels. We had quite a bit of fun designing these rewards and naming them after ranks in the Cathar spiritual hierarchy beginning with Credentes (Believers) and rising to Perfecti (Perfect). Everyone who's listened to our second episode should understand the prestige that comes with being a Cathar Perfect.
You can learn more about Sects Ed's Patreon campaign by visiting the official campaign page here. We would like to stress, however, that Sects Ed will always remain a free podcast. You should not feel that contributing is compulsory because you will always have free access to every episode of both Sects Ed and Sectstra Credit (our periodically produced side podcast). If you're able to help make this podcast happen, we would simply be supremely grateful. If you would like to support Sects Ed with a one time donation, you can do that as well just by clicking the Donate button on the home page of our website. Speaking of our website...
Once again, you may have noticed that the home page of our website is looking just a little bit different:
Since August, Sects Ed has secured spots on two more podcast platforms, TuneIn and Stitcher. In addition to adding buttons directing visitors to those platforms, we've also provided a link to a website called Podknife. Podknife is essentially a one stop shop for podcast reviews. If you have a few moments, we'd greatly appreciate if you could leave a rating and review on our page here. Ratings and reviews on websites like Podknife (and on any platform where you listen to podcasts) greatly increase our visibility, and you may just help us attract some new listeners who can look forward to...
While the schedule can always be subject to change, here are our planned episode topics for the next two months:
9/5 - Episode 15: Mahdist Revolution, Part 2
9/19 - Episode 16: Discordianism
10/3 - Episode 17: Church of Satan
10/17 - Episode 18: Satanic Temple
10/31 - Episode 19: Spiritualism
We hope that everyone enjoyed the first part of our series on the Mahdist Revolution in the nineteenth-century Sudan. We'll be finishing up that series in just a few days, but what's really got the Sects Ed team excited is October. In a manner of speaking, we're dedicating the month of Samhain to Satanism by analyzing both the Church of Satan founded by Anton LaVey and the much more modern Satanic Temple. Neither of these religious organizations actually worship the devil, but they will definitely provide us with a great deal to discuss regarding such topics as atheism and religious liberty in the United States. With three Tuesdays in October, we'll also have one more episode than usual, and we've decided to feature the spooktacular belief of Spiritualism for Halloween! With that, we come to...
Sects Ed Recommends
Once you're caught up on every episode of Sects Ed so far, you might also enjoy listening to the History of the Papacy Podcast. As host Steve Guerra describes it on his website, "This show will detail the biographies and interesting facts of the Papacy of Rome. It will start in the beginning, but will not go straight through. There will be many side tracks and detours along the way. We will investigate the backstreets of the Papacy where the tour normally doesn't go." Thus, this podcast's topics sometimes intersect with those on Sects Ed. These episodes in particular might help broaden your horizons on the Cathars (who were members of a Gnostic faith) and Girolamo Savonarola (who was excommunicated in 1497):
Episode 18: Gnostic Belief and Practice
Episode 19: Gnosticism, Part 2: Sacred Literature and Groups
Sidetrack Episode 2: Excommunication
Sidetrack Episode 46: Gnosticism: Gnowing Me, Gnowing You
With that, we come to the end of our second State of the Podcast. We wish you a spectacular month of September, and we look forward to teaching you more about sects.