It was three weeks ago today that I left for San Diego and from there to Black Rock City, Nevada, and Burning Man.  Three weeks.

I have been back 4 days and can only now begin to write about it. I have looked at a few of the photos I took, the images and sound memories dance about me like fireflies but I am only now grounding into the experience.

‘Only Now’. I have written that twice. ‘Only now’. Maybe because it was ‘Only There’ that the experience could happen. To try and tell people about it let alone write about it, is like grasping at a dream that was as vivid as life and trying to recreate it in hard copy.

And that is the essence of Burning Man. That creativity, the art and act of, is ephemeral. It is of its’ own moment. Something may be manifest of a solid tangible nature but that is the byproduct of the real experience.  It is not the purpose of the creative endeavor.

Like, I suppose, our relationship to Spirit, to our Soul, to our deepest truest Being-ness. Our Soul and Spirit that moves through us, is real, and vibrates through our being, lingers like a soft light over us, inspires and nurtures. But we cannot touch it, hold it or give it away. We can only take that gift of energy and Power to manifest the tangibles in our life.

What was Burning Man in tangibles particularly? Here in brief (and there will be more I am sure in future postings) is a little list.

• a city (yes a city!) of upwards of 45,000 that arises on the playa near Gerlach ,NV

• truly no commercialism – no advertisements, no sales.
(exceptions: ice and even that was kinda fun and there were accepted ways to cue-hop. And a coffee bar which when I saw it was never mobbed. And I, the latte-lover of the world, didn’t even go! There is way more to do and see and be and I wanted to be free of the world from which I had arrived.)

• people of all ages, genders/maybe gender/not sure gender, body types (size, shape and color), dress and undress, quiet and exhibitionist. And no-one looked twice at any of it EXCEPT in appreciation of a piece of jewelry, clothing, or the body as art.

• organization, freedom, agreement of behavior standards, no rules.  (No wonder I am still reeling – all those opposites in place.)

• art art art – sound sound sound – people people people

• BIKES!

• the Burning Man space – surrounded by the great, beautiful ancient hills and miles of playa beyond our little circle on it. Ride the bike out to the marked perimeter that defines this world. Leave behind the art, the sound, and people. Drink in the quiet, bathe in the ultimate creation – nature herself.

What have I come away with? The deepest awareness maybe, (today anyway), is that ultimately, when we take away the Dollar as a measure of value, when that marker of acceptance, worth, use is no longer on the page, then no-one has to prove anything and so they don’t. They just are and thus are beautiful in their own right.

So as real people in the everyday world how does this apply? When we swim in the creative endeavor, when we embrace the process, we are free indeed of self-judgment, of need, of fear, of competition. We become art in and of ourselves.

Include a creative endeavor in your daily life, be it writing, crayon coloring, dance, music, gardening, cooking. Anything that allows you to swim into that place of oneness and uniqueness in equal balance, that feeds your soul and then you live in good health.

There is more writing to come. Today is my first attempt to touch this. There are the memories of the costumes, long daily bike rides through the city, the passing parade, the techno heart-beat, the art cars-bikes-buses-trucks, the expressions of Fire all over the place, the family our camp was with my daughter and her friend joining us ‘oldies, the clean up. And the burns – of the Man and of the Temple, the latter perhaps the most moving and remarkable aspect of the entire experience for me.

Am I changed? I don’t think so. Maybe I am more comfortable within myself, certainly more comfortable with others, and thus more revealed to myself. But it is early days yet. Who knows how this work of art in process will manifest!

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