Where will the gathering be?

We will gather peacefully for silent meditation the morning of July 4th, 2017 from dawn until noon; and a peaceful assembly of free speech and expression from July 1st through the end of Vision Counsel; in the state of Oregon. For directions, click here.

To find out how to get into the gathering without getting a mandatory court appearance ticket, click here and check out the right side-bar. To reach a human being, email Karin.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Respect (Part 1 of 5 of "Creating Peace")

The gathering of the tribes is dedicated to creating peace on earth and the positive evolution of the planet. Sometimes peace seems so hard to attain, it can be helpful to focus on strategies that create opportunities for peace.  Today's concept is "Respect."

From the beginning, the gathering included concepts of respect. The invite to the first gathering in 1972 started off:

We, who are brothers & sisters, children of God, families of life on earth, friends of nature & of all people, children of humankind calling ourselves Rainbow Family Tribe, humbly invite:
All races, peoples, tribes, communes, men, women, children, individuals -- out of love.
All nations & national leaders -- out of respect
All religions & religious leaders -- out of faith

 If I were authoring the invite today, I would modify it to:
All races, peoples, tribes, communes, men, women, children, individuals -- out of respect and love.

So how then does respect contribute to creating peace?

Peace needs nurturing and dialog to plant its roots and grow.  Peace needs food and water.  If we do not respect the needs of peace and honor those needs, we are doomed to failure.  So how then do we go about creating respect at our gatherings?

When we gather, we are a community with a diversity of backgrounds, religious beliefs, political affiliations, interests, hopes and dreams. Honor that diversity in each of us -- our differences are what make us capable and interesting. Our connections are what make us strong.

The following ideas are commonly shared ideas, I didn't invent them, but I find it helpful to be reminded of them.

Respect is one of the core values in our attempts to create an egliterian culture. By approaching my family with respect I am laying the roots for a relationship. By treating people the way they wish to be treated, I can connect with others. If I offer respect to another person, that person is more likely to offer respect to me and to others. People who are treated with respect, learn how to treat others with respect.

We are all part of this big, wonderful planet called earth and hence we are all connected. Rather than trying to severe these connections, let's strengthen them. In 1994 at the Wyoming annual gathering, a forest fire occurred at the edge of the gathering up on a ridge. We formed a human bucket line from the creek at the bottom of the meadow to the ridge. None of us could have individually carried enough water up that hill quickly enough to put out that fire. But standing shoulder to shoulder and passing buckets hand to hand, we connected water and fire and extinguished the flames.

Separate issues from people in a respectful manner. When someone is engaging in non-respectful behavior, respect the person enough to explain why the behavior is creating an issue that needs to be addressed.

Acknowledge the emotions behind the inappropriate behavior and ask the person if they could refrain from the behavior and share their feelings with us instead. We all do this with our children when we refrain from saying "you're bad" and instead say "you made a poor choice"  or "please use your words to tell your brother why you are upset instead of hitting him."  Why can't we use this same method with adults?  Especially those of us who are children in the bodies of adults.

As the early gatherers (or earlies as they are more commonly known) wrote a long time ago "we are all of us children" as we are just now learning how to live with each other.  Be patient. Some of us learn more quickly and some of us learn less quickly. We all started from different places so we all have different journeys ahead of us. Let's be fellow travelers on this uncharted sea.

Everyone has an opinion and their opinion is no better nor worse than my opinion or your opinion. When we create space for people to freely share their thoughts without fear or judgement, we are creating a space where we respect each other.

Listen. We show our respect to others by listening to what they have to say. We not only listen with our ears, but our hearts, our minds, our souls, and our hands.  When people feel heard, they feel respected. When they feel respected, they are more likely to respect others.

Respect is an important starting point for creating peace.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Fall (Thanksgiving) Council Notes

These Notes were compiled and put together by a Circle of folks who attended the Council.--  They all requested to be anonymous. Please forward these Notes to your friends (after deleting any personal contact info that may be at the start of the message), post on your blogs, -- newsgroups, Facebook pages etc. --  Love and Light !

2016--  Fall-- (TG) Council Notes

I.--We had 2 concensus:

1.-- An invitation to any and all to participate in scouting-- There will be a scout rendezvous on Monday, May 15, 2017-- at a place in Oregon to be later decided.

2.-- Spring Council will begin on Saturday, June 10, 2017 at Rainbow Noon.

II.--Banking Council

4 people volunteered to be Magic Hat holders (aka Banking Council). They exchanged contact info with each other. They will keep records of any pre--Gathering donations and any pre--Gathering expenses. After Spring Council selects the Gathering site and Seed Camp begins, a new group of Magic Hat holders will be formed.

III.----Other topics discussed during Fall Council included:

A.-- Logistics

1. Scouting – all parts of Oregon are being considered. The answer (prior to Spring Council--€™s decision) to the question: Where exactly will the Gathering be?:  is: In Oregon! We ask that folks do not post details of scouting on social media. Scouts can stay in touch with one another by telephone and at the scout rendezvous. They can also utilize the NW Lightline (503) 727--2498 to coordinate scouting.  Scouting by maps can be done at any time-- especially when weather does not permit walking the land. Suggested maps include: Forest Service maps, Fire maps, Gazeteers and topo maps.

2. Work Parties are encouraged to prepare for the Gathering where things such as shitter seats, hand wash stations, dishwashing set up, recycling signs, and other useful items are assembled

3. Co-operations – a place at the Gathering where there are Councils and also a place where useful items including tools and other resources are available

4. Waterline needs: the Gathering will need items such as food grade poly pipe, fittings-- (T valves etc.), pre-filters and drinking-quality fine filters.

5. Sanitation and Health-- provide washable sit-on shitters (boxes or something else) for elders and children. Whoever brings them take them home; Suggestion for a "Shitter camp" for people dedicated to shitter business

6. Kid Village and Teen Village

7. Dirty Kidz Village--  (DKV)

8. Women’s Teepee Space -- including our trans, queer and gender fluid/nonconforming family as well.

9. Front Gate: an enjoyable, safe place to welcome folks

10. Shanti Sena (Peace Scene)

11. Supply-- start making local contacts for bulk wholesome foods

B. Visions, Ideas, Heartsongs

1. Family Traditions

2. Terminology

3. Leave No Trace

4. One-up the Operating Plan (do better than they ask)

5. Personal Safety, Consent (see Vermont Vision Council consensus)

6. Rainbow Family and Indigenous People-- Good relations, suggestions for best ways to move forward-- communicating our intentions to gather in Oregon in 2017, -- respecting sacred sites.

7. Black lives matter

8. White privilege

9. Regional Families needing support (such as Ocala family)

10. Homelessness-- What can be done?

11. Moving to a money--less system-- outside of Rainbow

12. Work parties outside of Rainbow to help local communities

13. Solidarity-now, any time, especially on July 4th ----  during the silent prayer for Peace

14. It’s all about Love -- the rest is just tinsel.

15. Time to Plant the Seeds for The Best Gathering Ever?

IV.The following is a personal account of Fall Council by one person who was there:

Aproximately 70 folks came to the 2016  Fall (TG) Council in Eugene, Oregon. Most were from Oregon, several from California, a few from Washington, a couple from Montana and several folks who are on the road.--  We had 2 pre--teen boys, 2 pre--teen gals, not too many dogs and some brave kitties.--  One big bus, a couple motorhomes, live-in vans, tents in the rain, and people bunking in the Council Space.--  Overall, there was a lot of comradery, sharing and caring.

--  The -carport kitchen served nutritious, delicious meals-- with ingredient cards and options for vegan, gluten free and lacto intolerant. They even served pop-overs (savory and sweet) to the Circle one day as we were in council. We started Friday and Saturday morning Councils with the feather going entirely around the Circle -- everyone sharing one-at-a-time.  Friday we began with the folks who have not yet been to a Rainbow Gathering, ending with those who have the most experience, and Saturday we began with the children. During these go-rounds, folks shared their Visions and suggested topics they wanted to see addressed by the group. 

After these mini heartsongs, the feather went around and around as the person holding the feather spoke on a topic/ topics of their choice and facilitated others discussing that subject. Lots of ideas were shared and connections made. There were a few Break Out Sessions between Councils, where folks met to discuss things that may not be of interest or difficult to discuss in a bigger group-- such as Scouting. There was a year-old interpersonal relation/ physical violence issue  between 2 people present which was handled by both a smaller circle on Saturday morning and by others over the weekend. To say the least, it was challenging and hard on many folks present. Over the weekend, the recurring themes seemed to be : Safety, Health, Support, Choice, Ease, Fun and Friendship.--  We had a Reggae show on Friday night and some homegrown music on Thursday, Saturday and Sunday nights.