Highlights from Rites of Spring 2018

By Hollis Taylor

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May 2018 Earth Spirit community organizes their 40th Rites of Spring that includes history and future elements for the Massachusetts based community. The event no only included Bright Hawk but also historic members like Jeff & Spinner McBride, Selena Fox, and Wendy Rule.

25 years at Rites of Spring has been part of Bright Hawk’s path through many transformations from earliest in her seeker days to now as she steps forward as an elder, wise woman, and one of the best storytellers in the world. Her abilitiy to engage is clear at the traditional Magic Sunset Storytime held at least twice during the event. Just after dinner the community slowly moves themselves into position creating a very large comfortable listening space around the campfire space just outside the dining hall. Bright Hawk often tries on new ideas with the Rites of Spring audience because she is at her best among her chosen family. Assured that they will support and love her in her creative process. Bright Hawk offers music along with her stories in the past it was just the djembe but in her most recent transformations she has began to master playing the handpan along to her stories. A unique ability along with this unique instrument creates a storytelling experience among no other. Something different for families with children of different ages. An experience that engages the parents, big kids and little kids alike – an experience that in the Rites of Spring community that has now become a tradition. A celebrated tradition of listening to stories forgotten, transformed, and created by Bright Hawk that teach deep lessons like respecting nature, everyone serves a purpose, and how to transform our scars. A fantastic experience that helps bring together community and families with respect to how humans have always done it around the fire but also speaks to our today – with music and even live characters for our busy minds.

Storytelling was the overall theme of Rites of Spring in 2018 and Bright Hawk found herself with a new transformation of her storytelling teachings. Her background with storytelling in corporations in order to build teams and understanding, therefore increasing productivity, was only the first step in Bright Hawk’s newest creation “Storytelling to Inspire Consciousness”. From an intense 90 minute workshop that seems to open hearts and inspire even the shyest of the participant to now a 2-3 part series that takes us deep into storytelling. Starting with HOW to share our stories in a way that engages, inspires, and transforms the listener and using those tools to take us all deeper. Bright Hawk’s 2 or 3 days events help us to use those tools to deepen our relationships with others – creating vulnerability, understanding and community on a deeper more intimate level. Bright Hawk created a taste of this 2-3 days experience at Rites of Spring with a two part intensive, each 90mins, where participants were encouraged to attend both the first and second session. Each one of these intensives, with just a dozen individuals, that by their choice to engage are fortunate to create lasting bonds with the others in the intensive by simply sharing their story in a way that engages and inspires. When people are able to be present and listen to each others stories a deep understanding is created, therefore creating a deeper more peaceful understanding for others. This practice could potentially create serious transformations in communities leading to sustainable peace. When we work to sustain peace among ourselves as a community we are able to take inspiration to the world at large in hopes to find more peace.

Bright Hawk’s presence enhances the entire experience of rituals and traditions among the community in a very special way. Bright Hawk’s rhythms with the djembe are never taken for granted among the Fire Circles every other night, she is often known to be a very strong group drummer and helps bring drummers together with her confidence and guidance. Bright Hawk’s presence among the community brings beauty and music to rituals that inspire original tradition. Tradition that was created by this community for this community and held in a healthy way through tears and struggles to celebrations and growths. Bright Hawk is honored to be part of a community that understands deeply how to hold each other through all our parts, even the ones that aren’t as comfortable as others. Building community goes deep and to have her roots deeply in the Rites of Spring community gives Bright Hawk inspiration and confidence to carry her amazing talents and messages around the world each year.

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