RiSE, Reflection & Rejuvenation

October 17, 2016

For us, October is an extraordinary month. It is the beginning of the end of the year, the beginning of looking towards the new year, and the reminder that you can begin again at anytime.

This year we celebrated this phenomenon at the RiSE Festival in an area of the Mojave desert operated by the Moapa Paiute tribe. We drove out past civilization to find 10,000 people ready to collectively launch their hopes and dreams to the sky.

Our band of three women met up in the Mojave desert where we sat for the few remaining hours before dark to decorate lanterns (2 each unless you chose to purchase more). You may decorate them any way you see fit — we decided one would carry what we needed to let go of and the other would carry our vows to ourselves and what we want to manifest in our lives, in the lives of our loved ones, our wishes for humanity, and our hopes and dreams for the world, for our sweet blue planet.


The first part of the event was quite heavy for us, almost somber, as we sat in energetic isolation of one other around the same torch, writing and reflecting. Lost in thought, we barely noticed the music playing or the crowds of people surrounding us in their own reflection.

After the sun set, in a sudden flash we snapped to the present as all the torches sparked up and people began preparing for the countdown–the first lantern is released collectively. Every lantern represents at least one wish. We looked to the sky and saw the hopes and dreams of 10,000 people lifting in unison, as a blanket of light. A huge feeling of relief and accomplishment washed over us.


Oddly enough, our “letting go” lanterns all struggled to launch. We all had to rely on anonymous faces in the crowd as they chased down our lanterns and helped push them upwards. That almost solidified the experience — having to give up control and accept help in letting go of things that were so personal. Our dream lanterns took off without a hitch.

Mindfulness and ritual, often overlooked in Western culture, are essential when fostering creativity and spirituality. RiSE ignited momentum in thinking about what is left on our plate to begin, to end, to change, to accomplish. We hope that next year when we look back and reflect, we will not have been overwhelmed by our goals but sustained our inspiration.

We invite you to join us as we explore our hopes, dreams, curiosities, and lust for life. Mindfully, with momentum. All of the qualities that make the journey bittersweet.

CREDITS// Article & Photos: Lorelai Birch & Melissa Collins.

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