Why You Can’t Bring ‘Home’ Home

It’s a surly time of year for Burners.

Hours spent at the laundromat, surrounded by the smell of vinegar everywhere, serotonin low and irritation high.

So, I find myself trolling pictures online of the stuff I’d attended, some that I missed (Damn you Disco Duck for keeping me away from the Atish set at Robot Heart!!) and reading articles on ‘How to Bring Burning Man Into Your Default Life’with tips like

  • bike more
  • find art projects to participate in next year
  • spend more time offline

I love these articles and these ideas and each year I become a little bit more “Burner-like” in my everyday life DCDNT2013

But-you CAN’T bring the Burn with you.

Harsh, I know.

It’s never going to be Burning Man 2013 again.  It’s over.  Sucks doesn’t it 😦

However……think of it this way.

You are underestimating the process that is the internal shift that occurs after the Burn by trying to relive what it was.

If you honestly believe (as I do) in the the experience of Burning Man: the shock of the environment, the mind-expanding art, the extreme shifts that happen, the aftermath-then you have to trust that you are no longer the person that went to the Playa in the first place.

It undermines the importance of the changes that have happened within you as a result of the Burn to think it can be that exact Burn ever again.  And, that you can be that exact same Burner.

The Playa experience isn’t something you can pack into a suitcase and open up like a pop-up book that you can climb back into- tutus a little less dusty, hot pants a little more snug, skin alot less tan.

The bittersweet beauty of the Burning Man experience is that it leaves us forever changed, a little more worldly, and hopefully a little more evolved.

The sad part of this Evolution is the awareness that EVERYTHING is finite, everything is coming to an end so while climbing the Coyote was a supreme act of bravery that left you a little more confident-it also made a permanent change in your being.

Your appreciation for beauty and goodness and community has increased and you are now a better person for it and that better person cannot have the same experience.

So, while we want to cling to it-as humans do-you can never have it again.  Your camp will change, people will break up, babies will be born and friends will be unable to attend and it will never be the same again.

In yoga, the idea of non-grasping is Aparigraha:  the Jain and Raja yoga concept that we suffer because we cling to things-sometimes long after they have served their purpose.  We all do it-I’m looking at that photo of my camp’s gorgeous palm trees and fantasizing I was under them right now!

We cling to experiences that feel good and suffer when we expect them to happen in that exact same way again.  Even despite the fact that we know it’s over.

So, what to do?  I mean, I didn’t come back from the Burn as an enlightened Bodhisattva!!

truth-and-beauty-2013My yoga practice this morning reminded me- be PRESENT and IN the moment-each one-as it’s happening.  Bring your full awareness into each experience -not reflecting back or projecting forward.  Try to BE in each breath, ENJOY each moment as it happens and maybe even acknowledge it as it’s happening.

Tell your friends you love them-someday they might not be with you.

Forgive quickly so you aren’t missing a great connection over some small thing.

Be brave and climb new scary and high things because you now know you can do it!

Kiss the cute boy, cute girl and tell them how gorgeous they are.

And, next year, when the gates open for Burning Man 2014 you will enter as a more evolved, connected being because you didn’t take for granted all of the moments in-between that brought you back.

Next year, you will wake and bike out to some new and different art piece that will reach into the depths of your soul and you will honor it will your full presence and breath because you know it’s fleeting and all the more precious because of it.

That’s something to come ‘Home’ to……

(DCDNT Palm Tree photo courtesy of Darcy Vasudev at Henna Lounge http://www.hennalounge.com

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