Sunday, September 29, 2013

Annual "Burning Man" in northern Nevada desert

Burning Man (Wikipedia)

Burning Man is a week-long annual event held in the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada, in the United States. The event begins on the last Monday in August, and ends on the first Monday in September, which coincides with the American Labor Day holiday. It takes its name from the ritual burning of a large wooden effigy, which is set alight on Saturday evening. The event is described as an experiment in community, art, radical self-expression, and radical self-reliance.

Burning Man is organized by Black Rock City, LLC. In 2010, 51,515 people attended Burning Man. 2011 attendance was capped at 50,000 participants and the event sold out on July 24. In April 2011, Larry Harvey announced that the organization had begun the process of transitioning management of the festival over to a new non-profit organization called the "Burning Man Project."


This event has become larger over the years, and I find it interesting that it is held in a remote location. I think that "radical self-reliance" is a pagan-value; although it may be interpreted in different ways. Also, I don't think that it would be accurate to say that this is "New Age" because many pagan concerns are not New Age... and do not believe that "we are gods and goddesses," but are group constructs "in fellowship" with the goddesses and gods. There is a well-funded radical anti-Christian milieu that wishes to be the polar opposite of what Christianity is, so it leads to this type of spiritual imbalance. However, I think the Burning Man can be--as the organizers seem to say--what you wish it to be. It's really the same as what was portrayed in the movie 'The Wicker Man'... an ancient pagan-European spiritual tradition. As I wrote in the movie review, a ritual of hope. I believe that Odinists and other folkish pagans should embrace this event as something with a lot of possibilities. The above link has a lot of interesting history and links, including the official website.


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