It'll be easy enough to livestream next Monday's total solar eclipse (or watch it from your backyard, if you're lucky enough to live in the line of totality), but an astronomical event of this magnitude is worthy of a real celebration. Kicking off tomorrow, the Oregon Eclipse Festival will be a weeklong tribute to the August 21 eclipse, complete with camping, art installations, and a lot of EDM.
This festival, held on the grounds of Big Summit Prairie ranch in Oregon's Ochoco National Forest, was created to bring people from all walks of life together to experience the solar eclipse in one of the most visually advantageous areas. People seeking personal enlightenment can explore the "Wheel of Fortune" (an interactive tarot deck) or kick back in the Wellness Oasis, where workshops in sound healing, sacred sensuality, and other esoteric practices abound. Those who'd rather enjoy the group vibes can check out the fest's seven stages' worth of musical performances or pay tribute to the night sky at the Shrines to the Cosmos.
If this sounds like little more than Fyre Festival 2.0 to you, we hear you, but the point at the heart of Oregon Eclipse isn't totally bogus. Even if you aren't interested in attending a massive happening such as this, you may still find it fulfilling to celebrate the eclipse in a group setting of some kind.
When we spoke with Athena Perrakis, PhD, founder and CEO of Sage Goddess, about the spiritual significance of the solar eclipse, she mentioned that she plans to spend at least part of the day of with others. "We’ll meditate together," she explained. "We’re going try to get information about what we need and how we need to change through signs, visions, or emotions that come up during the meditation."
However you choose to celebrate the eclipse, you'll get to bear witness to the first total solar eclipse to grace the continental U.S. in nearly 40 years. And, as Dr. Perrakis reminded us, no matter how many you see in your lifetime, it is always possible to find a new meaning in this celestial event.