Relentless Recap: Phoenix Lights 2018
April 13, 2018
April 13, 2018
There is a old Australian Proverb that says “We are visitors to this world; our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love, and then we return home.” This festival and this country living in true “Pura Vida” spirit, is a reminder of this simple mantra.
Showed up to the Sky Harbor Airport, hardly packed and no idea of what the future holds in the jungles of Costa Rica. I arrived to the gate and immediate had a giant smile on my face, the seats were all filled with festival goers. Family’s with kids, yogis, artists, health food addicts, and conscious people of all kind. They were doing Acro Yoga and practicing their Poi and Flow art, exchanging crystals and playlists. It felt like I was with family, and we hadn’t even begun the trip.
This first impression was a microcosm of what was about to occur. The Sold-Out festival was an accumulation of everything I hoped it to be. Carrying on the divinity of transformational festival culture, this was one of the best in the topics of Yoga and Permaculture. The biggest theme of the festival was sustainability and how to live properly. While most transformation festivals develop the mind and spirit, this festival aims specifically at the body and mother earth herself.
Everything was teaching a clear message; from the composite toilets with a chart on how to fertilize in a thriving system to the #endsingleuse campaign for reusable plates and cups throughout the festival. They even had a medical center that was completely natural plant medicine based right next to the regular First Aid station! Have a sunburn? Why bandage up with the First aid kit when you can get Aloe Vera Leaves rubbed on your burn to ease the pain!
I had a chance to interview Stephen Brooks, one of the founders of the Festival and the owner of a Permaculture eco-village in Costa Rica as well. His story was inspiring and eye opening. Starting his spiritual journey years ago when he first came to Costa Rica; he had watched the local children be sprayed down with chemicals from the Crop Duster over head while playing in a field. He knew there was a better way to live, and he set out to prove it. While I Skyped with him, he was traveling around the country collecting different plants and remedies for their Elixir Bar. A Bar you don’t regret going to, with cures for flu symptoms and menstrual cramps or just a quick natural energy pick me up in the morning; they had it all. He was very clear when stating, “This festival is about wellness and health, not empty debauchery.”
Walking around, I made it my mission to pop into as many workshops as possible. How to recognize effective plant life and the benefits of doing so at the Village stage or how to have a healthy pregnancy and raise a child at the Witches Workshops. They even had “school in session” from 5 to 9pm each day, which consisted of sitting in circles with open talks and socializing on a soul level.
A talk with Burners without borders, which is a political rights activist group that started when Katrina ruined New Orleans during Burning Man. A group of people left from Burning Man and went right to the disaster to help as much as possible, it really is as simple as that. This discussion turned into how to work under disaster relief and how to effectively care for people. Following that was an amazing workshop on honoring the divine goddess. How would you worship her? Couples gathered together as tears of joy and warm smiles of respect bloomed from their faces. They all did there own form of worship towards there lover, whether it was kissing her hands or deeply gazing into her eyes.
As Melissa AKA “The Historian” from The Confluence put it, ” Raves, reggae festivals, world festivals they all combined together through Burning Man and have now started to blossom into the mainstream.” The self development occurred all day, but if your not a practicing Guru or Shaman, it still had plenty of mainstream vibes. The beach was a 5 minute walk through a vendor village to enjoy each afternoon and there was always at least one stage cranking out the Bass music. Of course when the sun went down, the dancing was in full force. This was a Music festival after all. We just need to come together and talk about the ways we are changing the planet, so we truly do have something to celebrate for.
You can order your ticket for Envision 2017 here!