Mauritania: the slave capital of the world. Yea, slavery! An estimated four percent of the population are bonafide slaves. Then there is the sand, the land mines and indiscriminate attacks on everything foreign. Other than that it's beautiful!
What did I bring home? Mystical experiences in the desert renewed my sense of intimacy with the divine. In the solitude of early morning, red slivers of cloud intersecting the rising sun made me feel like God was baptizing me in dust.
In outlandish costumes, creating breathtaking works of art, building friendships we tried to express more completely who we genuinely are. Perhaps for a short time we could even see ourselves and others more clearly as children of God.
So there I was, walking through the desert, tears streaming down my face, wondering why the hell I had spent so much time and energy to get here. This is not what I came for, I was thinking to myself as I watched yet another tutu-clad raver bop on by.
I feel very lucky that I have met some of the most creative people on the planet, gathered in one place for an intensive week, who all kept teaching and learning from each other. I used to think I'm an open person until I visited this festival.