Category Archives: Christian Science

We are all Prophets – by Michael Morgan

Washing feet at Burning Man 2013To me, Burning Man is primarily a prophetic experience – the entire experience out on the playa is an opportunity to exercise your power as a prophet. And what exactly does that mean? The Bible is full of prophets. Every author of every book of Scripture expresses spiritual insight through their writing that is still remarkably poignant millennia later.

In preparing for this year’s Burning Man, I have come up with a list of Biblical prayers to focus on each day on the playa. If you’d like, you are more than welcome to join in! Your prayers, your willingness, your active support will affirm this golden truth: We are all Prophets.

Day 1: “You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, yet you can’t interpret the signs of the times?” — Matthew 16:3

Dear God, help me focus my thought on hearing God speak to me through every situation and circumstance. Help me set aside preconceived notions about what is right and wrong, good or bad, and be willing to really read the signs of the times in everyone I meet – no matter what they look like or how they act. I want to see your beautiful, majestic work of creation in everyone I meet.

Day 2: “Then I saw ‘a new heaven and a new earth,’ for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away” — Revelation 21:1

Dear God, I want to experience heaven wherever I am. I want to feel the presence of your angels, the glory of your goodness, and shout hallelujah that the old has passed away and the fresh, vibrant, holy and new has been revealed.

Day 3: “Everyone will live in peace and prosperity, enjoying their own grapevines and fig trees, for there will be nothing to fear. The LORD of Heaven’s Armies has made this promise!” — Micah 4:4

Dear God, help me dwell in peace and security alongside others. I want to be at peace to be me even when I’m around people who seem so different! Help me be attentive to the needs of others and not to forget that my shade could be shade for another – and that the seed of potential for the awakening of the Holy Spirit lives in every one of God’s children.

Day 4: “And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions” — Joel 2:28

Dear God, I want to receive your prophetic anointing in order to share your glory with the world. I want to see signs and wonders, not for my own amusement, but in order to open the eyes of others to your awesome love. I want the love of your Son Jesus to be so attractive, so unique, and so irresistible that we forget about religious belief and unite in spiritual affection.

Day 5: “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” — Romans 12:2

Dear God, let my activity and interaction with others reflect your model for covenant relationship. Let my conversation, my thoughts, and my actions be acceptable according to heaven’s standard. May I see every man as a brother made in God’s image and likeness, and every woman as a sister in Christ. Let there be no separation between me and them, but let us all represent an individual piece of a most exquisite whole.

Day 6: “‘I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism'” — Acts 10:34

Dear God, may I set aside prejudices and old concepts today. May I examine myself and discover what might be keeping me at a distant from others or thinking pridefully. Give me your eyes to see your children the same way you see them. Give me your voice to speak with joy and gratitude. May I be blind to hate and receptive to the many gifts waiting for me today.

Day 7: “So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift” — Matthew 5:23-34

Dear God, let me leave behind any and all resentment, bitterness, or envy directed towards my self or my fellow man. Let me be bathed in forgiveness on this day. Let me rejoice that I am made new, that the old man is burned away and the new man is established. Let all that is useless to my spiritual mission burn away, and may new strength and revelation follow me all of the days of my life. Amen.

Mary Baker Eddy, the female prophet and apostle of the 19th and 20th centuries, defines the word prophet in her book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures as “a spiritual seer; disappearance of material sense before the conscious facts of spiritual Truth” (pg. 593: 4-5).

Isn’t this what unites all of us at Burning Man? No matter our background, we all see and experience spiritual reality unlike anywhere else on the globe. We awaken to the nothingness of limitation, fear, and conflict and subsume those false cognitions with love, clarity, and infinite possibility. We are all prophets. Prophets of individual tribes, completely unique and different in how we prophesy, the languages we speak, our beliefs, our worship, our expression of the one Truth we all seek.

At this year’s Burning Man, I look forward to putting these prayers into practice by actively seeing every single person around me as a prophet sent by the supreme and glorious Father of all.

Stop by our camp (Isfahan & 9:15) if you can and receive support for your prophetic gifting. If you’re not actually at Burning Man, stop by mentally and take some time to pray for us each day! Spread it around wherever you are and take it with you to your next destination – awaken those around you by reminding them with your love that, in-deed, We are all Prophets.

Christian Science Camp at Burning Man 2014 Lecture & Service Schedule

Brad Horn/Nevada Appeal, via Associated Press
Brad Horn/Nevada Appeal, via Associated Press

Here’s a quick breakdown of our schedule, to help out all of you who are volunteering for a prayer watch. Thank you!!

Fri Aug 22 – lead team heads to playa
Sun Aug 24 late – rest of team arrives
Mon Aug 25 – festival begins – foot washing Mon-Sat 9a-7p at Healing Foot Wash: Life, Truth, Love camp
Wed Aug 27 11:15 AM – “Discover your spiritual identity” — talk by John Tyler, CSB, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at Sacred Spaces Village (4&Gold)
Wed Aug 27 7:00 PM – gratitude sharing service at Healing Foot Wash: Life, Truth, Love camp (I&9:15)
Thu Aug 28 10:15 AM – “Beyond the sixth sense” — talk by John Tyler at Sacred Spaces Village (4&Gold)
Fri Aug 29 9:00 AM – “Conflict Resolution: a spiritual approach” — talk by John T at Center Camp
Sun Aug 31 sunrise – church service in the Temple of Grace
Mon Sept 1 – exodus back to Reno and beyond

All times are Pacific Standard Time. Thank you for your support.

Agenda for Sunday 7/27/14 – 5pm CS@Burning Man Conference Call

Healing Foot Wash banner

I know it must feel like it was just yesterday that we had our last conference call, and we have another important one coming up on Sunday. If you’ve been missing these and can be on the next few calls that would be great… it really helps the team feel cohesive when we’re all participating!

(619) 326-2772
Access code: 1246521

** Agenda for 7/27/14 **

** Metaphysical inspiration **

** Fundraising update **
– Funds received to date
– Reimbursement request process & expectations (Name, Description, Amount, receipt)

** Tickets update **
– Has anyone not received their tickets yet (that aren’t at Will Call)?
– Who is still looking for tickets / steps we can take as a group to support

** Communications update **
– Everyone please submit recent picture + short bio for Participants page on site
– Banner artwork for camp entrance
– Playa cards artwork for handing out

** Foot washing **
– Be prepared to wash 1,000 people’s feet this year (~5x last year)
– More stations, be thinking through sustainable process, how we encourage visitors to participate as washers and in our camp. We may be playing much more of a “host” role this year, encouraging volunteers to stick around
– At ~1/2 cup per person, 1000 = 500 cups = ~32 gallons total of water for foot washing

** Official Burning Man Survival Guide **
– How many people have read this year’s version completely?
– This is REQUIRED READING for ALL camp participants. Please do this sooner rather than later. Online version: http://survival.burningman.com, you should have also gotten a copy with your tickets if they’re delivered.

** Metaphysical Support **
– Everyone please spend some time metaphysically supporting this camp, and each of our individual participants
– Some are still looking for tickets, some are financially tight, let’s focus on knowing our true and full supply
– Final camp arrangements are still happening, we have an assigned general location, let’s also pray to know that our specific location and neighbors will be harmonious, beneficial

** Next Meeting Reminder **
– Sunday 8/3/14, 5pm, normal conference call number
– Next two weekends after that will be work at the CSO weekends, PLEASE put this on your calendars

John Tyler speaks to Burning Man participation

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On today’s Christian Science Sentinel audio chat, John Tyler, CSB, answered a question about Burning Man as submitted by one of our camp members. John (also a member of the Christian Science Board of Lectureship) is giving three lectures at Burning Man this year, sponsored by friends of the Spiritual Playa group.

Listen to the chat here. The Burning Man question comes at about minute 50.

CS at BM Camp – Cultural differences

The following is a slightly edited email sent by Loren, aka “Mist-er”, one of the newest members of the group  — a Burning Man veteran, who has been learning more about our specific approach to going to Burning Man.

Our group is deeply focused on service we provide to others at Burning Man (praying, sharing, washing feet, supporting 3 talks by Christian Science lecturer John Tyler, CSB).  This new member has been eager to share additional Burning Man volunteer opportunities with our group, which we are indeed happy to learn about.  His email below gives a neat perspective on some of the different types of camps people can participate in at Burning Man, and how ours is a little different from many.

Enter Loren:

I think I finally “get it”.

The Christian Science at Burning Man Camp is a relatively small camp of 10-20 campers on the Playa plus about the same number of support persons off Playa (plus God).

Previously I camped with much larger camps, first with an arguably plug and play camp run by a for profit bus company based in San Francisco. They are approx $900 base price (extra luggage and bike transport extra) plus ticket (ticket cost is additional) with tent camping and no showers. The bus company has been going there for 20+ years so are “grandfathered” in with the Burning Man organization. There is not much affinity between camp members.  Members are those from farther away in the US and Canada, and also Europe and Asia, who want the logistics set up for them. Food and liquor are provided, and one of my personal objections was that I was paying for liquor with no option to opt out (maybe I paid involuntarily $100 extra for the booze???).

The next year I camped with a moderate size theme camp of people committed to providing an alcohol-free atmosphere.  Going by bus especially the first year of Burner Express with (at the time, now modified somewhat) severe luggage and bike restrictions presented challenges around food and water which I choose to not repeat with them this year. (They are less communal in terms of sleeping, food and water, for them it is just reserve a space, bring in your own stuff, food and water, pack your own stuff out, which did not work for me as a bus rider well).

This year, my camp at BM is CS at BM, with a smaller group which needs to focus on its own internal infrastructure first with the motivations of getting an “in” with Center Camp or The BORG a lower priority.

Now that I “get it” I will try to keep my discourse in the CS and BM camp list emails and on the calls focused on our camp infrastructure rather than side track folks on other arguably desirable but not essential stuff. Notwithstanding this, I will still make a brief discussion of opportunities for volunteering at Center Camp on the next conference call.

Thanks
Loren Mist-er

We’re very grateful to have Loren as the newest member of our group!


 

lorenLoren (Mist-er)
Loren (Playa name Mist-er) has been attending Burning Man since 2012. He lives near San Francisco and is a recent graduate of San Francisco State University. At Burning Man, he volunteers at the Center Camp Coffee Shop. This year, 2014, will be his first year at Healing Foot Wash Life Truth Love Camp.

Anna Lisa’s article about last year’s Burning Man experience is live on ChristianScience.com

Burning Man hands
Photo by Anna Lisa Kronman

Anna Lisa contributed a lovely write-up of her experiences as a camp participant at the 2013 Burning Man festival that has now been published on ChristianScience.com.

We prayed thoughtfully and earnestly for ourselves and all those who would be coming, but we arrived with few outlined outcomes. We planned to gently embrace this city of lively seekers by seeing their spiritual worthiness as we washed dust from their feet. What a surprise that in doing so, we discovered we were in the middle of church! Being in this very unique environment led me to some new thinking on what constitutes Church. Here are a few ideas that came to me in that windswept space about Church pared down to its core essence.

Click here to read the entire article.

Notes from tonight’s Christian Science at Burning Man group planning call

You bring love from my feet to my heart -- Alana
You bring love from my feet to my heart — Alana

Nice call tonight!  We’re getting into the fun planning details now.  Please review the 3 items below, you may have a TO-DO item or two.

New time for our calls:
Starting next week (7/13/14) we will be moving to 5pm Pacific for our group planning conference calls.  We will also be moving to a weekly call schedule, so please please mark this on your calendar and set a reminder for yourself.  It is very helpful to have everyone on each call going forward so we don’t have to follow up with individuals as we’re planning final logistics.

Kitchen Contributions due by 7/15/2014
In the next week (i.e. as soon as possible), for all confirmed ticket-holders, please send a check payment for $100, made out to Amanda. This will go directly towards our food purchases for the week we’ll be camping together.  We will track these contributions, and if we happen to get sufficient external donations to fully fund everything including our food costs, we should be able to refund this back (although please do not count on this happening, it’s a big MAYBE).  John & Michelle’s food costs will be covered by the group.

TO-DO for Everyone: Please: 1) Send the Kitchen Contribution payment in by 7/15 and 2) Send an email to Amanda confirming you’ve sent the payment.  Her direct email address is craftegirl@hotmail.com.

Travel planning:
We started to get a count of how people are expecting to travel to Burning Man.  We still need information for the following people who were not on the call tonight:

Julian
Andrea
Patricia
John & Michelle Tyler
Cristi

Your TO-DO: If you were not on the call tonight (i.e. your name is on the list above), please reply to this email with your expected transportation option from the options below:

Berkeley Group 1: (Assuming we receive Placement) – Will leave late Thursday evening or early Friday morning (8/21 or 8/22) and will transport all major camp supplies, material and setup tools, to arrive at Burning Man sometime Friday.  This group will build out the camp and claim our assigned location.

Berkeley Group 2: Will leave Berkeley Saturday 8/23 and stay with Reno church families Saturday night, go to church Sunday morning and then head for Burning Man afterwards.  If we do NOT receive Placement for our camp, Group 1 will be combined with Group 2.

Other / Self Transportation: Options include: Burner Bus, taking your own vehicle (we have plenty of Vehicle Passes so that will not be a problem), getting a ride with someone else.  Specify which of these you’ll be going with so we make sure everyone is covered.

Thanks again everyone, and looking forward to our next call:

5pm Pacific time, 7/13/14
(619) 326-2772
Access code: 1246521

June 2014 Letter to our Church Friends

5x7_postcard_2014_front_01c

Greetings friends!  This is the postcard and letter we sent out to many churches and friends recently.  If you know anyone who might appreciate seeing this, please feel free to share this with them!  There are less than 2 months until Burning Man happens and things are really starting to to come together!  Thanks again to everyone on the team who has been contributing so that everything get done that needs to get done!

5x7_postcard_2014_back_01c

June, 2014

Dear Church friends,

We all love to share “a cup of cold water”, the profoundly good news of Christian Science, with receptive hearts. The purpose of this letter is to acquaint you with how a group of us has been doing that at an unusual venue, and invite your prayerful and financial support as we continue this year. We appreciate your sharing this letter as widely as you can, posting it if possible, along with the card.

The event is Burning Man 2014, a temporary city of over 60,000 who meet for a week in the Nevada desert to share art, music, a gift-based economy, and free thinking. For a number of years, a few students of Christian Science have been a part of this community, sharing the good news of Christian Science healing. This blossomed into a somewhat larger group giving Christian Science lectures in 2012 and again in 2013 to some wide-open listeners.

Our informal group of Christian Scientists will be bringing John Tyler, CSB, a member of the Christian Science Board of Lectureship, to interested and hungering hearts this year. In addition to supporting the lectures, the group will be washing feet again (a very well-received gift offered last year), giving away copies of the Bible and Science and Health, and offering prayer or Christian Science treatment to any who request it.

Though the group participating in the desert is not large, the positive impact of sharing the Comforter is huge! Support by all who love the good it can accomplish is invaluable, and we invite you to join us in this. Here are three specific areas we welcome your participation:

  • Please join us in prayer in support of our time there from August 24 – September 1 2014: prayer that sees man as whole, pure, good, including all coming to Burning Man. We would appreciate prayer now as well, as we prepare.
  • Send us books to give away! We’re looking for loved, used copies of Science
    and Health
    and the Bible to give away as gifts at our camp. Written in or underlined is OK. Books may be sent to Christian Science at Burning Man, Care of First Church of Christ, Scientist, 795 West Peckham Ln., Reno, NV 89509.
  • Give financial support. Lecture fees, vehicle rentals, gas, and food are some of
    the expenses that will be covered by donations from individuals and churches. Thank you in advance! Checks may be made payable to “Cal Berkeley CSO” with a memo line of “Burning Man”, sent to Christian Science Organization, 2601 Durant Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94704. Any amount is appreciated.

You can find more information, videos of the Burning Man lectures, pictures, links to articles, and may donate online via PayPal here: http://spiritualplaya.org/donate/.

Thank you for your interest, prayers and support!

Lovingly,
The Christian Science at Burning Man team

Download PDF: 2014 Letter to churches

Fujiko Signs 2013 full Burning Man Christian Science Lecture “Love without limit, Life without fear”

Video not showing? Click here to view on YouTube.

Fujiko Signs, C.S.B. gave a 50 minute Christian Science lecture at the 2013 Burning Man festival in Black Rock City, Nevada titled “Love without limit, Life without fear”. The talk was delivered at the Red Lightning Camp main stage.

What do you think?  Leave a comment below!

2014 Burning Man Camp Placement Questionnaire Submitted!!!

2013_Healing_Foot_Wash_Life_Truth_Love_Placement_layout-revised_02

Close to the last minute (it’s due at 12pm later today) but I got it submitted.  A couple of new points:

  1. If we receive Placement, we’ll be required to arrive before Gate opens to setup our camp.  This will impact our scheduling.  We’ll need at least 1 person on-site to secure our placed location, and they request we have our camp fully setup before the general public begin arriving on Sunday.  We’ll probably shoot for somewhere between 3-6 people to be part of the Build Team, possibly up to 12.  Our earliest arrival date will be Thursday, August 21, 2014.
  2. We had to submit a name that was 33 characters or shorter for our Camp name.  I chose “Healing Foot Wash Life Truth Love” for this purpose, since our previous “official” name was too long.
  3. I requested placement in the 9:00 Portal, 7:30 Portal and 9:00 Streets areas, each with 150′ of frontage area.

Here are some of the responses to key questions in the application:

2014 Burning Man Placement Application

Camp/Village Name?

Please provide the name of your Camp or Village. You will be limited to 33 characters.

You may wish to drop words like “A”, “The”, and even “Camp” from your camp name for better positioning in alphabetical listings.

To honor our principle of de-commodification, we ask that you not include the name of your commercial enterprise in your camp name.

“Healing Foot Wash Life Truth Love”

Interactivity Description

Please describe your Camp and how you will promote personal interactivity of our community within your Camp at this year’s event.  Please be as specific and concrete as possible.  We are interested in reading your schedule of events, your plans for service, gifting and hosting in detail. (This is the most important information we are collecting from you).

HEALING FOOT WASH

Our camp enthusiastically provides foot wash stations in a loving, safe, non-sexual environment where visitors can sit on comfortable chairs and have their feet washed.  In 2013 we washed hundreds of people’s feet, and received glowing reviews from everyone (see below for some of their comments).  Many people were surprised to find us (we were unplaced last year) and visited us each day once they found us.

OUR MOTIVATION

We’re asked why we wash people’s feet? Our goal is simply to love everyone who visits in the purest way we can, by providing a much needed and appreciated service.  We also discuss spiritual topics with visitors if they’re interested, and share additional gifts of loved spiritual books if appropriate.  Our motivation is based in the Biblical examples of foot washing as a pure service of love.

This year we’re returning with more camp participants, and plan to wash even more feet.  It was a totally awesome experience last year, and this year will be even better.

SCHEDULE

We provide manned foot wash stations primarily during daylight hours, from breakfast through dinner time.  Our goal is to have 10 stations ready at all times.  We’ve recruited additional participants to ensure there are always people available to provide the service.

INTERACTIVITY

We encourage our “customers” to return and wash other people’s feet, but they must have their feet washed first.  We provide the supplies (dilute vinegar, soap, water, basins, lotion) and example of how to do it.

METHOD

1) Sit, remove shoes, socks

2) Place feet in clean basin, rinse with dilute vinegar / water mixture using squeeze bottle

3) Apply dilute Dr. Bronner’s soapy water using squeeze bottle

4) Rinse with clean water

5) Towel dry

6) Optional (most people want this) – apply foot lotion and massage feet / calfs

7) Sit, relax, talk

8) Once done, dispose of water in evaporator, clean basin for next use.

We also provide fresh cold water to drink and light snacks like cold grapes.

SHADE STRUCTURE

We provide a 60’x40′ public shaded area that provides relief from the hot sun.  Our foot wash stations are located under the shade structure, but there are no walls, so it is a very nice open, airy relaxing environment.

OPEN TO ALL

We gladly welcome everyone to our camp, both to receive foot wash service as well as to give.

“CUSTOMER” RESPONSES

Some of the comments / notes people left last year:

“This is the best gift I’ve gotten at Burning Man, and I’ve been coming for many years”

“You bring love from my feet to my heart – Alana”

“Best Foot Wash Ever”

“This is Love – Nels S.B. C.A.”

“)'( You guys have made me shoot rainbows out of my toes. You are beautiful expressions of love!”

“Thanks for the fresh feet. Ethiopia Joe”

“A perfect find – Love Lee, NYC”

We are totally looking forward to this year and having a “home” within the Burning Man community for this much appreciated service.

 

Acculturation

Familiarizing newer Burning Man event participants to our culture and community is a vital role of Placed Camps.

How does your camp encourage Participation, teach about the 10 Principles and set expectations about what it means to be a Burner?

Please describe how your Camp acculturates its members and the greater community.

Our camp holds regular (every 2-3 weeks) conference calls going over Burning Man principles and how we plan to express them.  We also have a group that has been focusing on the spiritual as well as practical applications of the 10 Principles, and thinking of inspiring ways of embodying those Principles.

We love all 10 of the Principles.  The Principles we strive to embody / express most in our camp are Radical Inclusion, Gifting (the main reason many of our participants are coming with us), Communal Effort, Civic Responsibility, Participation and Immediacy.

We scored 100% clean on the MOOP map last year (aka we Left No Trace).  Our camp is very low impact, and we emphasize with all new participants the need to really embrace the principles of Burning Man, including subscribing to Jack Rabbit Speaks, reviewing thoroughly the Burning Man website, and learning from our past experiences at Burning Man.

Physical Description 

We need a description of the layout of your Camp. Please describe the physical aspects with as much detail as possible. Include a description of features like structures, buildings, vehicles, tents, platforms, and the locations of your power sources. Maximum of 400 words.

Our camp consists of a central welcoming area defined by a 40’x60′ open public shade structure.  This structure is composed of a central 6’x6′ column with 14′ bracing for reflective shade cloth that extends out in a cross shape.  We have a 30′ dome (from Shelter Systems) that we provide as a public quiet space for reading (as well as camp participant sleeping area).  We have additional tents for sleeping, a kitchen area, a water evaporator.  We use solar panels for our light power needs.  Our lighting is all solar powered LED.  We park cars and RVs in the back of our camp, as our purpose is expressly to be warm and welcoming to public interaction.  We have a private shower that is for use of our campers.  We have bike parking in the front of the camp.

Public Listing on our website:

What you should know when you submit your Camp description for the website:

  1. Please limit your description to two sentences. Remember, this is our voice to the world. Please consider this when submitting.
  2. Please give us the correct URL; any future changes to the web address will be difficult.
  3. All submissions will be reviewed and may be edited.
  4. After your submission it will take about two weeks for the description to appear on the site.

Please include the description of your Camp that you would like to have included on the Burning Man website.

Text for website listing

Come have your feet washed in a quiet, safe and loving environment.  You may come back and wash other people’s feet after you’ve had yours washed, all are welcome!

Regardless of the decision of the Placement team at Burning Man, we’re confident we will be in our right place at 2014 Burning Man and will have the opportunity to be of service to hundreds of people during the week-long festival!