One week to go before I embark on my annual pilgrimage to the Playa for Burning Man. Although it has a reputation as being a big fantastical party in the desert, which it is….for me the principles of Burning Man and the experience itself is part of my yoga practice and spiritual awakening. The hard work and dedication it takes to plan, prepare and execute such a journey is in itself a reward. When you push through arising obstacles with both strength and flexibility, you find new depths of resiliency and courage as you dance into the unknown. The following are a few of the Burning Man principles I incorporate into my daily life:
Self-Reliance - The strength of a family, tribe, community and nation is based on the strength of the individuals. If we aren’t able to keep ourselves healthy, happy and strong, how can we be of service to others? Being self-reliant is very empowering, we get to know ourselves intimately and take responsibility for our strengths, weaknesses and limitless potential. Being able to care for oneself effectively also includes knowing when to accept and humbly ask for help.
Self-Expression – We were not born to fit in and yet many of us struggle to find a place where we feel accepted and understood. Our conditioning starts at birth, we are told how to be, how to look and what to believe. We are evolving throughout our life and our self-expression also changes. When we give space for ourselves to be natural, authentic and expressive, we also allow space for others to do the same. We are creative beings with the consciousness to imagine and manifest incredible art, music, entertainment and technology. One of my favorite things about Burning Man is experiencing how wonderfully creative and expressive humans beings are.
Participate – Life is happening right now!! Be in it for the experience! We can sit in safety and try to keep our world small and comfortable or we can get out and participate. Meet people, try new things, create opportunities for others to play with you. Community is about coming together and sharing. Be an active participant in your life! Your Karma is your Dharma! Your action is your path!
Leave No Trace – We are part of the ecosystem. Our impact on our environment is important. Nature nurtures us and without it we are nothing. Taking responsibility for our trash, be it physical, mental or environmental is an important spiritual practice. This obviously refers to littering, but also our emotional and energetic footprint. How do we come into and leave interactions with others? When I go to Black Rock City, it’s to burn my baggage and use the ashes to fertilize the seeds of new growth and awareness. Standing in the vast open space, I feel my heart, mind and soul expanding beyond limit. Leaving no trace of the garbage of the past, only space for Now.
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!