Rainbow Family - One View

Peter Fraterdeus (pfraterdeus@igc.apc.org)
Sat, 11 Apr 1992 15:08:59 -0700 (PDT)

This was originally uploaded before the Nevada Gathering.
It's still wonderful! -- Peter

No one person's experience can sum up the Rainbow
Family or its Gathering: this is the first step to
understanding it. Since the Rainbow is a movement of
countless individuals, has no leaders or doctrines, the
details are as many as we are.
The following, therefore, is only one person's view.
The name itself tells it simplest: we are an extended
Family. The network that has grown out of 21 World
Peace & Healing Gatherings has become the Family of all
the families we've met and become related to in our
travels and gatherings. The network is spreading rapidly
now to regional and international circles of folks also
learning to be Family; the extended family seems to keep
As the rainbow is the spectrum of all the stripes, the
Rainbow Family reaches across all human boundaries.
The Family can make no statement at all without the
agreement of every single Rainbow. Therefore, the
Family makes few statements. Our only common belief is
in Family; our only political position is the right to Gather.
By long consensus we do not buy or sell in the temple of
our Gatherings, we do not want alcohol in our camps,
weapons or violence around our children. These are not
rules anyone enforces, but the consensus of many
councils, which we respect.
A federal judge in Texas last year upheld our right to
peaceably assemble on National Forest land-- our land, as
citizens-- in the free expression of our belief in Gathering.
We do so every July 1-7; on the 4th we circle and send a
mighty silent call for Peace and Healing to the world.
This year we gather in Nevada, and all are welcome.
(Come prepared to camp at high altitude, bring your own
water and shade, pitch in and share what you can.)
It's like visiting any foreign place, strange customs,
strange costumes- yet uncannily familiar: Welcome
Home, strangers keep saying, and after wandering awhile
the feeling does seep in that this is how we would all be
living if something hadn't gone awry. If you've stayed
that long, leaving the Gathering can hit you harder with
culture-shock than your arrival.
After a few Gatherings, though, you get the comfortable
feeling that no matter where you wander, you have a
Home somewhere, there's a place where the twisted
social geometry of "civilization" does not apply. You
start forgetting where you are and looking at every
panhandler and policeman like Family.
That's when you know you've really come Home.

* * * + + () + + * * *

Brothers and Sisters of the human Family
Let us come together in solemn joy to celebrate
our Unity amidst the Variety of Creation
under the One Sky all species share
in the Garden this earth was created to be

Let us leave our differences behind and bring only our diversity
Let us council with our relations the plants and animals, insects and bacteria
Let us stand in the circle that encloses all beings of planet Earth
and join hands in the song of healing harmony among the peoples of the world

To gather is sacred.
The circle makes us whole.


+ + + * * (=) * * + + +

Namaste -- Stephen Wing

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