This was my second burn. Somehow, I had totally missed the significance of the temple and its burn last year, though I was on the playa for it.
The contrast between the Man burning on Saturday and the temple burn was remarkable.
Funny, though...I was going to write to complain about some of the selfishness I saw/heard there...I, too, heard that dude loudly looking for Monica, over and over, while a girl behind me heaved and wept, watching the burn. And shortly after that, some guy used his bullhorn to tell all of us that "your mother sucks donkey dicks in hell".
Thing is, a few people snickered at that one. And I was among them. Hard to tell just what state of mind that guy was in to yell that out, so I can't say whether it was brilliant or shameful. But that's just it: I'm back home now, in clean clothes, freshly-showered, and was about to write to say "dude, whoever you are, you were a real dickhead for yelling that". But I'm thinking that's 'cause I'm already starting to get a little comfortable in my 'real life', starting to ascribe an imprint of the temple burn as this "beautiful, peaceful, spiritual part of Burning Man, only marred by some assholes here and there". Until I remembered snickering at it at the time, too. There IS a limit to which we can take ourselves so seriously. We can hope, pray, visualize, whatever...And we should. It's a hugely-important part of what makes us human. But ultimately, we have to accept that total control is out of our hands. Our fondest hopes and prayers will either be realized or not, irrespective of the noise going on around us from others on their own journeys. And their journeys are just as worthy as our own. So long as nobody is causing physical harm to someone, we have to allow it.
So I'm left thinking that of the thousands of us who stood reverently, impressively-sliently, to watch the burn, the fact that we had just a tiny bit of cynicism forced upon us is a good thing.
But dude, that was a pretty ballsy way to do it. I'll at least give ya THAT.
Much love to all the good playa people.