Where will the gathering be?

Where will the 2014 gathering be?
Near Heber, Utah. Click here for directions
Who is invited?
Every person with a belly button. If for some reason, you lost your belly button, you are invited as well.
What you really need to know:
How to Get Into The Gathering Without Getting a Mandatory Court Appearance Ticket.
How to Contact Someone?
If after reading the information on this blog, checking out the links on the right hand side, you still have questions, concerns, or problems, email random gatherers for assistance.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Respect (Part 1 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 nuturing 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.


  1. I can respect the other person's right to live how they want to. I just don't want to share space with a war monger, a drunk, a materialist, at a gathering. It doesn't mean I can't do it, it means I don't want to.

    I see a degradation not an enlightenment in the gatherings. Is it my error in my perception due to changes in myself? I don't know. I do know I have grown more like the people I admired that I met at those first gatherings. Having taken long breaks between gatherings the last 2 decades may have skewed my vision and that even the early gatherings I attended were just like the ones that are happening now.

    I don't have any answers. I despise war. I choose not to spend time with folks who justify war at any level. That doesn't mean war does not exist it means I see no valid justification of warring. My definition of war does not include acts of self defense or defense of other's. War to me means using violence to get one's on way regardless of the harm being caused.

    I'm no saint. I've used violence to get my own way in the past. I may err and behave that way in the future. I am ever vigilant of my intentions and actions in order to prevent erring in that fashion in the future.

    I hope this makes sense and is respectful of folks that want to drink and panhandle and trade and wear 'dose me' signs around their necks at gatherings.

    "All I am saying is give peace a chance."

    However I see them as mutually exclusive choices. Peace cannot co-exist with war. If violence is your thing then you are denying me my choice to live in peace. The gathering used to be the only place I could go for respite from a society of war. Now I do not even have that.

  2. peace and love brother.

  3. Are those Mini~Manuals for a Safe & Peaceful Gathering still accessible ?

    If yes where ?

    Years ago this brother made many copis to give to rainbow newbies....

  4. can I drink at a gathering? what about safety as I always carry my gun if camping?I don't like war,but understand I know our government does,as it means big time bucksif I have a med marijuana card can I smoke there? excuse my ignorance but what is dose me ?.

  5. @ Kkhaposeng, I strongly recommend you leave your gun at home as guns are not appropriate. There will be a few thousand people around you so no bears will be in camp.

    From Rap 151

    It is a tradition in our family to discourage alcohol use at the Gathering.

    We, especially our children, need a safe and sane environment to celebrate in. We respect the alcoholic’s right to drink, but the alcoholic must respect the rights of others to gather in an alcohol-free environment.

    The gathering is a prayer and peace sanctuary, not a booze party. Your brothers and sisters can help you through it if you wish to stop. Be whole, be healthy, be your true self at Rainbow.


Comments that use racial/sexists slurs, advocate violence against anyone, or that attempt to sell things will not be published. If this is what you're into, do it on your own website.

I welcome healthy debate on ideas of interest to the 2014 annual gathering of the tribes.