Sherwood, Five Years Later

In less than two months, the gates of Sherwood Forest Faire open for the 5th season.  And it is time for a bit of reflection and visioning.

In the mystic studies, there is this belief that when one has in one’s mind that which seems right and good and in line with the forces of the universe, then it can come into existence through a series of acts.  The first is seeing what is desired in a manifested state sometime in the future.  The next step is to realize that the creation has already happened within all of time-space.  And the third step is to then act in every instance as if this is true.  No obstacles, no hindrances, nothing can stop it from becoming a reality.

Thus, Sherwood was created.

We believed the time was right for a faire to be born out of our hearts, minds and souls.  This faire to be called Sherwood would have the attributes taken from other faires as well as our own needs and desires.  Central among the characteristics of Sherwood would be community, authenticity, a melding of patrons-participants-administration.  Family would be at the center of Sherwood.  Respect.  Acceptance.  A value of the individual.  Shared responsibility and creativity.  Music would be paramount.  Rites and rituals specific to the Sherwood family.  Generational understanding and appreciation.  Love.  An ever-evolving desire to be better.

And there would be trials and tribulations that we like any community would face.  We would, likewise, at times, fail to live up to our lofty goals.  But at other times, we would soar with eagles toward the heavens.

Together, we cleared a raw virgin land.  We built structures together.  We shared resources.  We realized the importance of fireside gatherings.  We constructed a Celtic Stone Circle which we believe will outlive us all and be a focal point of energy as well as a physical symbol of our respect for nature and the earth we inhabit.

We believed it was important to bring our families to Faire and teach our children the ways of this community.  We developed clans.  We, in humble ways, have begun a transformation of attitudes about faire—what is desired and what is expected.

We built on our individual strengths and have become better as a whole for it.

So, here we are…five seasons later.  More clans.  More other-faire events.  More conflict at times.  More people joining our family.  More tears.  More laughter.

I think we are at an interesting place in our journey.  We have been together long enough to know the heartaches and loss and suffering experienced among our community members.   We often join at the pub and forget our day-to-day woes… but we know they are upon us and we carry them like great weights… and no amount of music or alcohol can lessen the weight they press upon our souls.  We see folk struggling in their respective relationships.  Others burdened by alcoholism or loss of jobs.  Illnesses, loss of family members, and the like.  All a part of this amazing tapestry.

Therefore, it is so important that we understand the role each of us plays in the Sherwood Community.  We need to be supportive.  We need to be understanding.  At times, we need to be critical.  I believe—I sincerely believe—we are our brother’s keeper.  We need to offer our ear to those who need to be heard.  We need to offer our shoulder for those who need a shoulder to lean on.  We need to offer kind and respectful critique for those who are wandering.  We need to share with each other from our hearts and our souls.  We need to judge, but not be judgmental.  We need to treat others as we want to be treated.

I think the business of Sherwood is sound and will succeed.  It is our collective and community soul that we should concentrate on for the future of what we have built.  For what we have built reminds me of Jesus’ admonition to the priests and Sadducees when he said, tear down this temple and I will build it again in three days.  Sherwood is not the structures or roads, but it is the hearts and minds of each of us who have painted upon this canvas.

Offer your brother and sister within Sherwood your very best.  Offer them your vision of what this community can and should be.  Do not ever shirk your responsibilities to this family.  And offer redemption as a possibility when one of us goes astray…but seeks to make appropriate amends and reparations.

Next time you walk into our sacred forest, feel the life within a tree, feel the wind,   touch one of the stones of the Seven Sisters, and embrace one another as you desire to be loved.  Sherwood, as I have said many times, is a grand and precious experiment of people longing for something more.  Give more than you take..and by doing so, Sherwood will live forever.

Best to you these Holidays.

Rengypsy

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