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Wren Wrants A-Z ...

A Letter To My Daughter

A PumkinHead in the White House

A Real Bad Day For Witchcraft

A Real Reason To Vote

A Time for War, a Time for Peace and a Time to Browse the Bookstore

A Wonderful Piece of News

The Aftermath of Columbine High School

Beating A Not-So-Hasty Retreat

Behind Enemy Lines

Breakfast Will Be Served In Fifteen Minutes...

Building a Circle of Trust

But What Will People Think?

By Their Furniture, Ye Shall Know Them

Caution: Restricted Area

Cleaning Out The Junk Drawer

Community Power Who Holds it?

Community Thoughts on Tempest Smith

Compelling without the Yelling

Confessions of a News Junkie

The Consistancy of Change...


Coping with Grief

Cramming It Down Our Throats...

Damned if you do and Damned if you don't

Declaring Your Personal Independence Day

Did Your World Change Too?

Dreaming in The Dark...

There is No Zuul

There's a Rabbit In The Moon...

Excavating the Dinosaur Altar

Fair Use, Copyright and the Pagan Net

Feeding Our Young

The First Day

Gather 'Round The Fire

Getting Back To Nature

Getting Back To Normal

Getting Rid of What Bugs You

Gifts That Keep On Giving...

The Giving Circle

Gods In A China Shop...

Good And Evil: In The Shadow Of Littleton And The Garden Of The Gods.

Good Will Toward Men

The Great Hamster Myth

Happy Beltaine!

Happy Brigid's Day Everyone!

The Heart of A Mechanic

Helping Hands

Helping Our Own

Hidden Hatred Haunts Pagans

Home is Where the Spirit Is

Homosexuality and Public Policy

The Household of Priests and Priestesses

If The Hissy Fits

In A Mirror Darkly...

In Your Dreams

The Internet Reaches beyond Washington

It All Happens Locally

It Is Your Destiny

It's Maypole Week 'Round the World

It's Tribal Time!

January Arrives Wearing A White Coat

Judging Amy -- Wren's Thoughts

Killed a Goat Today

Knot Charming

Learning How To Fly

Life With Mikey

Listening To The Story

Listening To The Woods

Living In A Banana Republic

Living Through A Drought

Logging On and Speaking Out!

The Long and Short Of It

The Love of Ordinary Things

Mabon... a Man for all Seasons

Magick's Arrow

Mamas, Don't let your Babies...

The Media Story Is Often Not The True One

Mercury Has Left the Building

Minding Your News P's and Q's

Mixed Blessings

NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.

It's Tribal Time!

Author: Wren
Posted: March 26th. 2001
Times Viewed: 7,491

This weekend, Fritz, Peg (escaping from the frozen tundra of Boston) and Wren attended PhoenixPhyre in Land O' Lakes, Florida. While this is definitely one of our favorite Pagan festivals already, Wade Berlin and the entire Phoenix Festival staff once again proved that vision, organization and good old fashioned hard work are the key elements to any successful event. What days before was a relatively quiet country getaway off the county road was transformed within hours into a bustling Pagan tribal village. It is hard to believe that this encampment is not a permanent home for the hundreds of individuals, families, merchants, artists, musicians and wise Elders we met there. It reminds us of those old folk-tales in which enchanted towns magically appear for a few hours out of the mists of time before once again vanishing without a trace to who knows where.

Although we missed the performances on Thursday night (darn day job!), we did get to reconnect with the members of both Elven Drums (Wheeeee!) and The Raft. We sure do a lot of hugging at Pagan festivals! We saw lots of old friends from previous events and of course, each time that we go, we make some new old friends to look for at the next one. Making that face-to-face 'people connection' is the major draw for us. Sitting behind a computer keyboard for the many hours each day that the maintenance of a large site like TWV requires tends to leave us feeling a bit 'hug-deprived'. Getting back to Nature and back within the circle of humanity at a Pagan gathering recharges our emotional batteries and renews our pledge to serve such wonderful people as these.

In the older tribal model, the entire community was responsible for the well being and success of the village. In today's world, we often as individuals and as families and even as Pagan groups are focused in so closely upon our own model of 'success' that we do not see the entire village that has grown up around us. Because the goals that we have set for ourselves are narrowly defined and the culture is so fast-paced and soulless, people who want to 'get ahead' in the world often spend all of their energy on just a few things: those things that will aid them in attaining that goal. Distractions are kept to a minimum by keeping the rest of the world-with all of its problems and general social 'messiness'-outside of our own little circle. That sort of focused-on-a-goal-and-not-much-else attitude works in the corporate business world that expects one to sacrifice a lot in order to get ahead. It is often touted as one of the 'virtues' of highly successful people. Tunnel-vision-like focus is highly productive and in the realms where high productivity is highly rewarded, separatism works extremely well. And it works well when well. But things don't always work out so well now do they? And that is when we often find that our comfortable non-distracting cubicle of a life has no doorway to the village around us.

What if one day you woke up and found out that you had just been diagnosed with a painful, disabilitating or terminal illness? What if in the afternoon, you learned that your money is all gone and you and your family are going to be put out into the street? What if your child went to school in the morning and never came home again? It is when things aren't going well that we often realize that we ourselves have never seen a family that we personally know out in the street or spent hours just listening to another person talk, cry or rage at the death that is hunting him/her down or sat up all night worrying along with another parent when a child is missing or late or seriously hurt. We haven't seen these things happen before to anyone that we know- and now it is happening to us and we don't know how to talk about it or who to talk about it with or even if there is anyone else out there to talk to at all. All we see are the rows and rows of separate cubicles that make up the average town or city and the people who 'live' in them going about their business like nothing has happened.

If you have ever said, "Why is this happening to me?" or "I want my life to count to for something." or "I didn't know that anyone else ever felt this way, too- or believed this way, too- or had experienced something like this, too", you have realized at some level that you are missing (perhaps yearning) for a tribal connection. In a tribe, everyone knows what happens to everyone else, has seen what happens to everyone else and then goes through the experience with everyone else. They know that sometimes bad things DO happen to good people, not just to you. They know that people reach out to help to other people and that they will help you, too. They know that people get hurt, get sad, get lost, get found, get married, get abandoned, get sick, get well, take their own lives, either find their own way back or need to be searched for. They know because they have seen it, experienced it in the lives of the other people in the tribe. It is no longer experienced as if the 'Universe' out to get you personally anymore, but simply as another of the joys and the sometimes consequences of life on this planet. It puts things into a larger perspective.

Pagan festivals give us a taste of what tribal living could be like. Of course, few of us are willing to give up our separate residences for communal living nor our individual mobility to be tied down to one geographical spot. But the 'concept' of tribal perceptions, of a tribal "consciousness" as it were-IS something that we can nurture by maintaining ties with the people that we meet there. It is an oddity of human nature that we often tell complete strangers things about ourselves that we have never told to anyone else. Most of the time, we do so because we don't think that the people that we DO see often would understand or even care about these deep things inside us. How very sad for all of us to miss hearing about the very things that could bring us together in the bonds of happiness or sorrow or fear or insecurity which we all-in our most honest moments-know lie within ourselves as well.

Article Specs

Article ID: 4504

VoxAcct: 1

Section: wrenwalker

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 6,876

Times Read: 7,491



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