My name is Kaye, and in my personal life, I go by Kaye Boesme. I’m a woman in her mid-30s. This About Me covers some basics: what this blog is, what you can expect as a reader, and a bit about my background.

If you want to contact me, email me at kallisti {at symbol} fea {dot} st — but keep in mind that I may triage you to a section of The Soul’s Inner Statues if what you are asking is covered there.

What do I Blog About?

KALLISTI is a space for me to share thoughts and reflections on many aspects of my theistic religious practice. It includes:

  • Occasional update posts that give a slice-of-life feel to how a modern religious person navigates the ups and downs of life
  • Commonplace book posts, often called A Miscellany of Quotations: followed by information about which authors I’m quoting, and other analyses of passages in philosophical and religious works I’m reading
  • Reflections on theology and the impact of specific deities on my practice, including occasional hymns and poems
  • Essays, often impromptu, about a variety of topics at the intersection of polytheism and practice
    • I also write essays about astronomy, science, and polytheism sometimes
    • Essays about minimalism, consumerism, and polytheism are very common here

Occasionally, I post practical advice, too. Some older posts were attempts at systematizing and offering that to people getting started with worshipping Gods, but I have consolidated and updated all of that — it’s The Soul’s Inner Statues, a free online book (an at-cost print version is forthcoming for those who prefer paper) that takes the reader systematically through developing a core practice for Gods.

This blog once lived on Blogger, and it was sharing information about what at the time was labeled “Hellenic Polytheism” or “Hellenismos” (note: the latter term should not be used by non-Greeks like me!). That site was started in 2008 when I was 20-21, and it was one of the first few blogs on the English-language web (outside of LiveJournal) that focused on recon-style worship of the Hellenic Gods. I restarted KALLISTI in 2016 after several years of hiatus because I wanted to be active in blogosphere conversations about polytheism. In 2019, after encountering some hard truths, I started to pivot away from reconstructionism towards theism more simply — worshipping the Gods, being aware of my own cultural context, and leaning into uncomfortable questions about cultural transmission to (hopefully) come into wholeness. In 2019, the blog also started pivoting towards Platonizing content. Importantly, my perspective has changed over time, and I started writing online when I was quite young — so please ask me if you are wondering if something you’ve read that’s older than a year or two is still my current thinking.

My views on this blog are definitely influenced by my philosophical and theological outlook. I love Plato and the Platonists and read them voraciously, but I am a nonspecialist despite having been veering→Platonism for years at this point. If part of the goal of philosophers is to teach people how to be good polytheists, I’m in their target audience.

About Me

First, do I have credentials? That depends on what you mean.

I am not a priestess, oracle, or academic authority on religious topics. I am someone who was raised in American Neopaganism in the late 90s and early 2000s, and my spiritual trajectory has evolved alongside the movement. As an older kid and teen, I actively participated in Neopagan rituals and performed some ritual functions (like calling quarters, a Wiccanizing Neopagan practice in which elements are asked to come to the ritual; I usually called West/Water or East/Air). In college, I was the co-chair of our pagan group for a year and a half. I pivoted towards reconstructionism when I was 20 because I had concerns about whether there were better and more historically grounded ways to pray to the Gods I worship, namely Apollo(n). From 2009-2020, I was a member of a Hellenic Polytheism org based in the USA.

Second, what is my practice? It’s theistic, and my home base is my household shrine.

I worship many Gods (sometimes called polytheism or paganism, but it is essentially basic, open theism) and have a Platonizing practice, meaning that I avidly read Platonic philosophers (ancient and modern) and reflect on their teachings. While many people were exposed to Platonism through out-of-context dialogue passages in high school readers or a way-too-political reading of the Republic, Platonism is a spiritual lifestyle path that focuses on using the soul’s faculties (which are given a specific schema by the school, as is common for any philosophy or theological perspective) to achieve union with the Gods and the ultimate happiness possible for us as souls, generally through some mix of contemplation, theurgy (specifically, intense prayer and devotion to a God or Gods), and philosophical study, which can vary in composition according to the person and their subschool.

I engage (primarily) with Hellenic Gods, philosophy, and theology, but I am not Greek — I am Scandi and French-Canadian American. My practice is different from the religion practiced by Greek orgs in Greece and the Greek diaspora even though many elements may look the same. I do not use the word Hellenism, as it refers to Hellenic (Greek) culture in general. The Gods can be worshipped by anyone, and we always need to think about how cultural reception impacts how we first encountered the Gods and what that means for our practice so we can fully integrate our spirituality into our lives. Since 2019, I have explored some practices related to my ancestry, and there are a few things I’ve integrated into my daily practice.

I worship Apollon, Eir, Mnemosyne and the Muses, Athene, Belesama (also spelled Belisama), and Hestia-Vesta most closely. For several years, I worshipped the Erinyes/Eumenides more closely than I do now — same goes for Hermes. I make libations to some ancestral Gods, spirits, and ancestors, and I started doing that because I am motivated by the philosophers’ insistence on respecting our lived context and practices associated with it; however, in the words of Rumi, “being human is a guest house” — these ancestral practices shift from lifetime to lifetime, and our engagement with them is transient. Right now, that means having a household practice for several Nordic and Gaulish Gods, including Frigg and Nantosuelta. In another lifetime, who knows? My devotion to the Gods who hold my heart (okay, specifically Apollon) is a much stronger thread. I follow a lunisolar ritual calendar.

Professionally, I’m a librarian in higher education, with a focus on the sciences. I studied English literature before 1850 and astronomy as a major/minor pair back in undergrad. I am also a published poet and writer. Politically, the Working Families Party most closely matches my political positions — economically very progressive, socially moderately progressive (… I have read the Protagoras …).

At its most basic, lighting incense and praying to the Gods is available to anyone with the desire to learn how to pray — I’m offering this information about me in the spirit of disclosure, and you can make of it what you will.