After my last shift saturday afternoon, I couldn’t wait to get my body on the dance floor, I needed to expel this energy that had been brewing. At Desert Hearts, I danced to the heart beat rhythm of Mother Earth, of Gaia. At Lucidity, I had a different feeling, more of unity with my fellow humans. The dance floor wasn’t as packed and I was able to move more freely. Looking around I saw the happiness shown on each face, I moved perspective to see what else was there.
I saw a girl I had met at Desert Hearts, and once again as volunteering here, Jenna Rose. She exclaimed, “Girl! I knew you were cool!”
I thought about that baby for awhile, I mean, how awesome to have that experience at such a young age. I am just beginning to gain knowledge of this expansive universe and all that it holds, and yet this baby is growing up in this world of consciousness, learning about the shifting rhythms of life, the optimistic beauty that is inside.
I danced over to center front, to gain a different view. I locked eyes with various individuals along the way, each one with the feeling that they too understood, that we are all in this together, all one; it doesn’t matter that I am me and you are you, we are all the same, we are all friends. It doesn’t matter if I’ve seen your face, it only matters that I see the same emotion that I feel now, reflected on your face.
A guy named Ben walked up to me as I stood on the edge of dancing, we spoke for awhile. He was telling me that he thinks in rhythm and rhymes. He was really nervous about what I might think of him. It turns out I was fascinated, my mind thinks more in colors and textures, which helps with my visual art and in my descriptions while writing. I’ve always been in awe of those who can rap or create rhymes without seemingly trying.
Ben walked me down to Nomad’s Nook, to check out the different music that was happening there. I nodded at a guy just as I was diving into the bass and we smoked a bowl in celebration of this dance. I turned around and a group of friends were there, we hugged and danced until the music stopped, afterwards wandering up the road towards Warrior Way, meandering through a pick up stick walkway, past the tree of intention and through a laser forest and wavy lights reflecting on the gravel beneath our feet. Eventually, we came to the Dusty Barrel, where a music comedy show was beginning to happen.
Mikey was way too hyped from dancing and I was cold, so I went to find some tea, stopping by the porta potties for a rendezvous with a couple of girls and Strawberry Propaganda. They steered us in another direction and I found a fire where people were free singing and rapping. When I looked up, I saw the tea lounge from Desert Hearts. Just as I was about to walk in, I saw Jameson Hubbs emerging. I crawled to the front for a tiny cup of Pu-erh tea and crawled back out to accompany him to the Nest Stage. Along the way, he drew my eye to some art installations he had created.
Drums made from propane tanks, cut and painted, hanging from a stand; the idea is for one person to sit beneath the drum while the other taps away, creating a vibration and experience fully immersed within the sound. I found a friend the next day who gave me a big dose of sound immersion while she got into the beat and rhythm to playing this genius drum while I comfortably sat below, gaining the tranquility and insight from the vibrations of rubber hitting a variety of metal tones.
The Nest Stage felt sleepy to me, so I once again grabbed tea while chatting to my server and a few fellow sippers. Conversation didn’t grab me, so I wandered off and ran into some more friends. We decided to regroup towards camp, along the way meeting Brian, an intelligent rather shy and humble human. We ended up sitting in a lotus tent with a few other new found friends and passed a spliff as we introduced ourselves to the group.
I find that in most situations upon a group meeting one and other, we tend towards tribal ceremonial behavior, or as I imagine it to be. Everyone goes around the circle, introducing their name and celebrating in the same-ness of what makes us individuals, many times some item is included in the energy passing, a joint, spliff or conch shell. This is a wonderfully beautiful moment I love to live in. Each time it happens, its an exciting opportunity to uncover a veil. It’s easier to let go and converse about what is running around my mind with the comfort and ease that they are most likely feeling something similar, but it might be the shift to unlock a blockage.
Brian showed us a map of Lucidity and explained that it was designed to be a human brain. We sat and traced our evenings and as I traced my finger along the lines of the map-bandana, I started noticing everything I had experienced was also linked to how I was feeling and my intention in the moment. It all starts with the Pineal gland, where the main stage was located, a place that is commonly viewed as the seat of our souls, a place that creates melatonin, what gives us our circadian rhythm and feelings of happiness and wellbeing. Other areas stood out to me: The Hypothalamus which controls hunger, thirst and body temperature was the eating area. The Frontal lobe was filled with the Healing Garden and the Sacred Fire, which rules emotion, speech, body movements and self awareness. The main camping and the rest of Lucidity was located in the Parietal Lobe, where we interpret our senses, languages, and memories.
The next day, I went to a workshop on vitality where I learned about mindful eating, cold showers, sleeping well, walking and running really fast, and meditation. Learning information about health and care creates new awareness as I go about my day, I purposefully placed my feet and kept my peripheral vision active as I went about the daylight hours, ending the day back in the tea lounge, sharing my Nepali story and the intentions of Ganesh while a drum circle finished up around the sacred fire and the moon rose on the horizon.
I stopped by camp for a quick meal, then set off to see TV Broken, Third Eye Open. It was there that I saw friends and acquaintances I had met within the last year. We danced and talked and drank beers and exchanged information and strawberries. I had loaned my phone to the guy selling tee shirts when he couldn’t get in the day before, so it was wonderful to see him there and connect on art and screen printing. I wandered off with a friend a while later and ended up at Lucid University where a photographer was taking time-lapped psychedelic portraits. I ran into a giraffe who I had met at a tiny first year festival back in September or October. He lives in Mississippi but travels out west for festivals a few times a year. He mentioned Joshua Tree Music Festival which has peaked my interest. I’ve found that of any place, if someone is from Joshua Tree, it’s guaranteed to be a good time, the creativity and passion for arts is incredible and they’ve built a community in the Mojave desert among Joshua trees, a type of yucca that only grows in 2 places in the world, the other being Jerusalem.
I spent one more evening at Live Oak Campground, it was silent and empty when I spoke my farewells. The last day was laughing, cleaning up, sleeping, sorting trash, smoking spliffs, cooking dinner and relaxing, then go to bed early. By late morning I was packed up and on the road.
I sat and meditated in front of the intention tree, I am love. Love and family, truth and peace all united under one blanket of stars, I’ll always raise my cup of tea and share in this herbal blend, as long as we respect each other and dance amidst the feathered grey beats of music in our heads. Lucidity in my dreams, we are here for a purpose as the intentions gather around the tree, we meet in harmony. Healed and sacred, a giant joyful dance encircles us in flame, too hot to release, we smolder together as the night allows sunlight to peak through the trees. Embracing each other through the heat of the day, acknowledging and accepting one and other as the same; as humans, as souls and children of this earth.
I’m here and this life is better than any dream I’ve had, life is better than any lucid dream, where I’m in each moment physically creating what I want to see through the intentions I use and the direction it takes me. If Moontribe opened my eyes to the festival world, Lucidity welcomed me across the threshold. I saw within the history of the world, the ebb and flow in the longer currents of our universe. Its the metaphors and the stories that carry on to shape what we learn; offering a choice, of a world without human suffering, even as impossible as that may be. There will always be evil, otherwise there may not be good, but to be free, to taste the elixir that life is and has to offer, to flex the muscles enveloped within our mind and body. The meaning of life isn’t just about saying that something is special, it’s about seeing what the world and surroundings need, what you can offer to the world and all those in it. Intention to the betterness, the devotion to goodness and light, pureness and truth, but also joy and happiness, a question of what do I hold as the key to unlocking just a bit of all of this for another, so that one day we all have the option of loving deeper, of strength in devotion to humanity and the world that encases us.
Festivals, as with any event in life, are what you make from them, Lucidity was made from the people, the attendees. I am lucky enough in this portion of my life to be surrounded by open and conscious individuals, in fact, I keep running into the same people. As if I finally understand that happiness is in this moment, lucidly understanding that life is now, I’m in it and so are all of these people, so let’s keep going. “You do you.” The phrase I may have over used, but it’s to accept that we can all be and do things that we want and need to do, self acceptance. Lucidity helped me accept my relaxation, reinvigorated me into my present and set me off to finish and finalize, then guide me onward past the future that can be preconceived. I’ll see ya when I see ya, maybe on the dance floor.