Symbiosis Gathering

HIGHLIGHT: Mix of magical atmosphere, art and mystical beats.

The rhythmic drive pounded like ancient pony hooves carrying us into the desert. This year the Kooyooe Tukadu tribe allowed the Symbiosis Gathering to take place on the sacred land of their ancestors near North Pyramid Lake.

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It is believed that just being on such land can change you, and these sacred grounds did not disappoint. The desert drew its temporary tenants in with a mystic, almost magnetic force as people converged to share music, art and love. Smoldering desert mornings unhurriedly dissolved into icy dips in the lake – cooling, cleansing. 

The music became an extension of the magical atmosphere, like the desert sand beneath our feet, continuous, blending one act into the next, morning into evening, then night, then into the next morning, filling every space with its beauty.

The scene was filled with workshops, truth-seekers, elaborate artesian vendors, rappers, DJs, bands, yogis and stunning art installations. Like a thread of life flowing throughout the community, invisible beats moved you as each step carried you into a new reality, allowing you to fall in love with something or someone new. To open your eyes in this oasis was to discover new beauty and truth in all directions. The people gathered here were walking pieces of art themselves, seeking to make their outsides as beautiful as their insides through true self expression, shattering prejudice and preconception.

My admiration for the participants was fickle but honest. It stretched from The Bay Area’s Shotgun Wedding Quintet where Dublin’s rapid, insightful flow meshed perfectly with his band’s banging beats, to my new favorite beat boxer, Scissorology. Sissorology’s apoplexy bass blew my mind through powerful amps, pounding my heart into my stomach. Another new favorite was Little Dragon (pictured), who moved like her music, delicate, strong, and sexy…upbeat trance drenched in soul.

This gathering left its participants with many parting gifts – especially those who came with an open mind – but most lasting for me will be the love. It radiated through the ground, through the crowd, through the music and through our souls.  We all danced and loved.  My most enduring memory is watching the Eclipse peak over the Eclipse stage, me, submerged in the sacred water, experiencing universal truth that could only be found in that place in that moment.

Enlightened, I bumped home through the desert, the whispers of the ancients inviting me back next year. An invitation I will humbly accept.

Where: Pyramid Lake, NV

When: May 17-21, 2012

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