I have to admit when I first went to Burning Man a few years ago, I didn't know exactly what I was going to. I loved the idea of of being part of a live gift economy and a real community gathering in the desert, but honestly I thought I was just going to a massive party. Of course, Burning Man probably is the biggest and brightest party on earth but it is so much more. Over 50, 000 shiny humans and hundreds of sound-systems. But it it so much more then that. My first experience at Burning Man turned my world upside down, and I am forever grateful.
Everyone that comes brings everything they need and plenty of offerings in the form of art cars, workshops, food, drinks, little gifts. All the wonderful and creative things that you see, were thought up by members of the community, funded privately or through art grants and then brought to the desert for the simple purpose of shared enjoyment. Every single person you meet is like a long lost friend. Such warmth, such honesty, such grace. There is no wifi. At Burning Man, you are deep in the moment.
Being in the moment makes Burning Man a playground for synchronicity. They say that 'the playa' gives you everything you need'. Every single person's experience is completely different, the theme camps you stumble across, the things you see, the people you meet. For me, Burning Man is space to let things go, face my fears, understand myself more deeply and connect with heart opened souls. It was at Burning Man that I finally learnt to ride a bike, forgave myself for a dear friend's death, let go of a relationship that had lasted over a decade, and met many of the people that I consider my closest friends. Not to mention the intense moments of joy, laughter and simple humility at the power and magic of human beings.
One of the things that I have taken away from Burning Man, is that you don't have to be in the desert to make this way of living a reality. The Burning Man Project is doing some really cool global projects all year round. The principles are simple and each one I have experienced on my travels around the world and in daily life. Those moments are precious and always touch my heart. But why are they limited? By living the Burning Man principles, you can turn your life into an everyday playground of synchronicity.
The Ten Principles of Burning Man and how to live them every day:
Welcome and respect the stranger, and the acquaintance. Treat everyone like they are a good friend, welcome them. Smile and say hello to people as you walk down the street.
Practice acts of wild gifting. The value of a gift is unconditional. Give your ideas, time, energy and inspiration freely. Don't be attached to what might come back to you.
Step outside our fake world of brands, corporations and consumerism. Question what you buy, what you support, what you sign up to. Use your role as a citizen to build a brighter future that honours our environment and our humanity.
Make yourself a strong, happy useful citizen. Work on your shit, meditate, do what you need to do to discover, exercise and rely on your inner resources.
Get to know yourself. Discover your unique individual gifts and then share them with us so we can be inspired by your beauty.
No man is an island. Hold your community in your heart with every decision you make. Collaborate, Cooperate, Share.
Take responsibility for your actions and how they shape our global community. Be an activist. Make your life your message.
Leaving No Trace
Respect your environment. Clean up after yourself and if you notice other people's litter, clear that up too.
Transformative change happens through deeply personal participation. Don't be a bystander, take part. If you have something to offer, offer it. If you want to try something, try it. Live your life with an open heart.
Do it now. Life is not about tomorrow or next month or next year or when I retire. Life is only this very moment, the only one we can be sure of. Be here now.
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