Workshop: Gathering of holy fools (2020)

Greetings and Salutations Fellow Holy Fools!

On Saturday the foolish of May, we hereby invite you to participate in our Annual Gathering and Performance: the Dance of Fools.

Like you know, this is a celebration of walking the light path of not knowing, nor caring. Naive, and idiotic you may call it. Bring forward your inner attitude of Divine Innocence and be willing to have total faith in the process of living. These are pressing times with viruses, global warming, economic collapse, and fascist politics on the rise. Dire are the consequences on both a personal, social, and global level—time to take a break. Time to Lighten Up!

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As a participating Fool, you will arrive on Friday before the performance, to mingle and catch-up with your fellow Fools. A simple dinner is served, and then we will engage in so-called childish games. The time will include whatever we will find suitable and foolish enough: lots of play to fire up your inner trickster as well as guided vocal and physical warm-ups, group work, movement, free dance, singing simple folk songs. The evening ends with the yearly confession of our seriousness sharing and reflecting in confidence with a circle of supportive of Fools.

The Holy Fool is the most dangerous person on earth because she is willing to break from convention to take an action that is inspired from within.

Joseph Campbell

On Saturday morning, we suggest a mandatory morning practice of madness, followed by an exploration of subjects for the annual Dance of Fools. Find your aspect of “foolishness”. Maybe you are the Sacred Clown, the Comedian, The Joker, the Trickster, the Jester, the Mystic Fool the Healer Clown. Then during the day, we will rehearse, create costumes, and scenography using the holy method of fun. After dinner, we premier the never-stopping uniquely improvised and participatory performance together, until we fall asleep under the stars.

Before you are allowed to go home on Sunday, we will have a meditative and playful brunch together while enjoying the beautiful nature and saying goodbye to your holy foolish friends.

Do you feel confused but attracted to this event? Good. You can look at this as a role play, where you will act out the archetype of the fool. The space we create together is a life-and-emotion-positive space that means that all different expressions of life are welcome, from sadness to sexuality. Without any requirement to do anything. We aim to make it safe enough to be brave enough for you to play. The only things we are not favorable towards are drugs (including “shamanic medicine) and non-consented emotional or physical violence. There will always be a safe word and the possibility to take a break from the experience. But remember this is not therapy, so we expect you to more or less be able to hold yourself, or to ask any of the leaders for help.

Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious

– Rumi

The Fool invites us to begin an adventure in innocence and trust. You can almost hear him or her whistling as s/he steps once more onto the path, embracing the future with optimism. The Fool doesn’t worry about doing the right thing, what the neighbors will think. The Fool doesn’t think ahead, trying to prepare. The Fool is prepared for anything! When the Fool shows up in our lives there’s a rare opportunity at hand. The Fool may appear to be mocking himself, but in reality, he mirrors what he sees in us. We laugh at his antics, never suspecting we are the topic of his story. John Stewart and Steven Colbert play the roles of the Court Jester, poking at the heart of our culture and government and ourselves when we look in the mirror. The Holy Fool or Sacred Clown casts doubt on our beliefs, our abilities, our motives, our institutions, our sanity, our loves, our laws, and our leaders. They make us question things we have always taken for granted. They challenge us to walk a more choice-driven life. They invite us to ask ‘Is this seriousness really appropriate?’ Sacred Clowns hold up the mirror of innocence to show us our folly as well as our resilience. They may even call into question our entire understanding of ourselves and the world. . . . No wonder we fear them! Yet what may initially appear to be folly, may open the door to our deepest wisdom and our highest good.

The word Fool comes from the Latin word follis, which means a pair of bellows, which provide the oxygen needed for combustion. The Fool “fires us up” with the impetus for action when something is finished or goes stale.The Fool is the one who always takes us to the next level, not afraid of stepping off the bluff into the chasm of the Unknown. The Fool combines wisdom, madness, and the folly of the spiritual adventurer, but never stays attached when it’s time to move on.

Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

Confounding the establishment by playing Trickster is one of The Fool’s most loved tricks. When this archetype is present and active in your psyche, you can be completely unpredictable and amoral — a divinely sanctioned lawlessness that is hard to rationalize — guided wholly by an experimental attitude toward life. In this willingness to be so un-programmed by culture, tribe, or society, we carry the makings of the Hero/Savior archetype. This provides us the archetypal impulsive curiosity that continually moves us toward the fulfillment of our ideal, though we’re often surprised at how this comes about.

According to Jacquelyn Small: the Fool represents an inner attitude of Divine Innocence, willing to have total faith in the process of living. He casts himself totally — and with gay abandon — into all with which he comes into contact, and redeems whatever he meets. This quality of Divine Innocence is a form of continual humility in all our relations, which prevents any adversity from causing the imbalance. Anything adverse The Fool encounters are brought to the heart of its positive quality with a sense of awe; it is transformed. Without accepting our dark or “unlived” side with this child-like quality, we take on a false spirituality, one where “niceness” replaces the raw beauty of real-ness. This Divine Person has so much faith in this process and in God; a symbol of our core Self. “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.” This is the one who always takes us to the next level, not afraid of stepping off the bluff into the chasm of the Unknown. The Fool combines wisdom, madness, and the folly of the spiritual adventurer, but never stays attached when it’s time to move on.

The Fool leaves the past behind. He carries nothing more than his purity, innocence, and trust. No matter how many times the Fool is deceived; she goes on trusting, acting “like a fool.” Her trust and innocence springs eternal and is incorruptible. She has no interest in being other than where she is.