BLACK ROCK CITY, Nevada - Economic austerity? Not when it comes to entertaining distractions. More than 50,000 people are converging this week at "Burning Man" for the annual arts festival. It reaches its zenith on Labor Day. Among the attractions are a 15 foot tall Pez Dispenser with a giant yellow chicken head and a giant fire breathing dragon that doubles as a Viking ship.
The festival culminates with the torching of an enormous effigy. For the first time in the festival's 25 year history, tickets are sold out. Scalpers on EBay are charging as much as $800 for tickets [for those afraid to show up and get in for free or for much less], causing some to suggest that capitalistic interests are overshadowing this year's communitarian gathering.
- Burning Man (official website)
- Burning Man Buddhists
- Lotus in a Sea of Fire: Burning Buddhist Questions
- While reflecting on Buddhism and Burning Man, I learned of a wildfire encroaching on a meditation retreat. It's an analogy... Of the many things for which San Francisco is notorious, Buddhism and Burning Man are undoubtedly near the top of the list. Home to the first Buddhist temples in the US, the city has attracted several waves of Asian immigrants, a handful of Zen masters, and a bunch of Beat writers that together have fostered dozens of sanghas representing an array of Buddhist traditions (Reality Sandwich).
- Buddha Camp: Bringing (Nichiren) Buddhism to Burning Man since 2007: They're baaaack for their fifth year on the Playa! Their 2011 address will be the block of 4:30 and Coming Out (approximately). All chanting is done American Gongyo style. BuddhaCamp@theLotusDome is a Burning Man theme camp that was started by a small group of Burner Buddhists in Seattle, Washington.