It is always inspiring to me when I get to experience the fruits of creative collaboration among community. This past weekend, the Edmonton-based tribe known as Flociety hosted a celebration of the transition from Winter to Spring with music, dancing, fire spinning, creative arts, and food. The devotional attention of this tribe, put forth into the Rite of Spring, was witnessed and felt by all in attendance. The invitation was received by tribes near and far, creating a bridge between worlds and a coalescence of serendipitous encounters. The vibe of the space and friendliness of the people were a testament to the foundation of love and support pouring forth from the heart of the Flociety community.
Entering the Dream
As we pulled the car into the muddy gravel parking lot, one of the crew spotted a vacant landing spot at the doorstep to our night’s beginning. The day’s journey North to our destination in Edmonton drifted into memory as we walked excitedly through the welcoming entry filled with smiles and warm greetings. We were guests in this community; here to contribute our presence and gratitude to the space. As I maneuvered through the crowd to the gatekeepers to request entry, a wave of familiarity washed over me. I know these people and I know this dreamy space.
The space before me is filled with Greek royalty; Gods and Goddesses of an ancient time, dancing among stone pillars covered with lush green foliage. At the far end of the arena stands the rhythmic enchanter, casting acoustical resonances through the sea of air around us. Bolts of green and red and blue burst forth from magical boxes of light to entertain and delight the sense of wonder.
Spring is new, bright, and optimistic. It is time for life to emerge from its hibernation, return from the migration, and shift focus to fertilization. Where did all of these beautiful people come from? So bright, smiley, friendly, and warm – how to resist falling in love with each of them? I recognize the space we have collectively consented to enter and I find it effortless to fall into the surrender of moving through the watery dream.
Surrendering to the Moment
I have nowhere else to be. I open myself to observe, experience, and respond to whatever may present itself to my awareness. I find my way to a lavishly decorated hall at the back of the arena and sit upon a cushion to observe the others here to celebrate. Bodies all around move up and down with the playful music filling the room.
Something emerges from the crowd and swoops over to the space next to me – a fiery phoenix with iridescence orange and red feathers takes a nearby cushion. I see the window and introduce myself, curiously exploring the potential of this encounter. The Phoenix speaks passionately of his gifts of heat and fire and invites me to learn of his art of alchemizing solid rock into transparent glass.
Despite my excitement and desire to receive the Phoenix’s wisdom, an irresistible auditory flavour drifted into my ears like a siren’s song and drew my attention away for a moment. When I turned back, the Phoenix was gone. I thanked him silently for his presence before giving permission to the sound to move my body. The elevating resonance causes my body to rise and I dive into the sea of people to give life to the story of our dance.
My heart was filling to the brim as I dropped into my body and witnessed the people around me moving in rhythmic unison, all wearing their brightest smiles and flowing costumes. A long-time reunion of friends, some spontaneous role playing, supportive screams and cheers, and nurturing embraces mark moments emerging from the crowd of beautiful beings all grooving out together. A celebration of life.
Dancing with the Paradoxical Nightmare
The happiness overflows and fills the space around us. Despite the uplifting soundscape, I sense something is off and begin to search for its source. Just what I thought – it’s within me. As soon as I observe the dissonance, the feeling starts to expand and overtake the joy I so recently enjoyed. I need to move, escape, and distract myself in any way from this unbearable discomfort. I dash to the front of the hall and find an opening to a cavern. Lights are hung inside and it looks safe. I begin the decent into the unknown.
This place is different; part of me resists going any further. But there is a draw I cannot ignore. It’s something really deep, pulling my curiosity into its darkness. Horned Daemons and Spirits relish in the dance with their shadows as they eagerly consume the subsonic sound bits taking form through the masterful hands of the lead sound Sorcerer. It’s a nightmarish hell of the most delightful of devilish endeavours. It’s a place to face the darkness; a space to embrace the shadow. I stop resisting the unknown and allow its emptiness to consume me.
I am the dance.
The Light at the End
The dance is low, wide, and deep. The characters in the nightmare are not evil; they are guides and teachers for us, just as we are for them. I creep among them with a grounded bounce-step in time with the bass. The air is heavy and the frequencies are deeply rooted. My body feels tired from trying to hold up the crushing weight of the past. I find a space to sit near the edge and I allow the sadness to flow through me, recognizing it as a part of the joy I felt earlier. Knowing the need to release the burdens of that which is no more.
I come out of my indulgences when I notice a glowing Goddess at my side. Persephone has materialized from her underworld domain to remind me of the light of spring still present in the darkness. Her heart is bursting with supportive nurturance as she divulges her spells and crafting secrets that contribute to creating the world around us. The passionate and creative life force of this being before me rekindle my inspiration as I offer her my gratitude for her gifts of destruction and creation. Beauty within the darkness. Life married to death. Nightmare united with dream.
The Model of Flociety
The Rite of Spring celebration filled me with gratitude and inspiration beyond measure. To share in a space of such heartfelt giving and receiving was an absolute joy. The friendliness, trust, and openness of the people in attendance reminded me of why I love events such as the Rite of Spring so much. To be free to come and go, to feel safe enough to let one’s guard down, and to trust others enough to leave belongings around is a wonder to experience in today’s world.
Flociety’s heart of giving came through in the obvious dedication to the organization and decoration of the event, the donation to a wildlife charity, the volunteerism of the community, and the serving of nourishing food to the participants throughout the night. When you respect others by showing them such trust, the world returns it.
Thank you to the entire Flociety tribe for putting together an incredible event to bring together the communities and celebrate the Rite of Spring! Your model is one that is paving the way for the more beautiful world we all dream of.
To learn more about the Flociety tribe and to stay in the loop with what they are up to, check out their facebook page here.
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