GSV Spring Retreat
April 21 – 23 2017
The Mountain Retreat & Learning Center
Highlands, North Carolina
The Sacred Fool’s Journey
“Whoever travels without a guide, needs two hundred years
for a two-day journey.”
-Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī
Our life’s journey comprises innumerable smaller journeys which in turn create and append our larger life’s journey. Think of it as spirit’s spiral dance.
It is really easy to make decisions that direct our journey on autopilot; a consciousness based on the experience and knowledge of others. Autopilot keeps us safe on planes, but does little to enrich our spiritual lives that thrive on inquiry and openness. Unlike autopilot, spiritual journeys call us to be courageous as we choose our journeys and navigate their paths.
This Fool we will explore at the Spring Retreat, is not witless, fatuous or shortsighted.
Quite the opposite. Our Sacred Fool encourages us to embark on new journeys with our eyes, minds, and, most especially our hearts, open. This Fool is filled with curiosity and calls us to explore ever-greater aliveness, a greater consciousness and deeper union with spirit.
The Sacred Fool is the very definition of generosity of spirit, filled with cheer and skillfully using laughter in the service of morphing fear into trust. GSV’s Spring Retreat is traditionally the lightest and most ebullient of its three yearly gatherings. This retreat will be brimming with the pleasures and the rewards of connecting through play.
Come to explore your courage and ours. Courage acknowledges the presence of fear and willingly engages it, while bravery requires little thought or consciousness and thus knows nothing of fear.
This is the courage of the drag queens and sissies who ignited gay liberation in the ’60s. This is the courage of the communities that came together in the ‘80s to care for each other and demand that the political and medical establishments take action to halt the AIDS pandemic. This is the courage that is at the core of peaceful resistance and the guiding light of non-violence; the courage that it took for you to come out and to come to GSV. This is the courage that will allow us to challenge all who would silence spirit.
The schedule will similar to last spring allowing big blocks of free time and/or the option to participate in community-led workshops.
Registration for the retreat, begins at 3pm Friday. Following dinner, the Opening Circle begins at 7:30pm. Closing Circle begins after lunch on Sunday with a goal of finishing by 2pm.
We’ll have the option to stay at The Mountain from Sunday afternoon to noon on Monday. We’ll be the only group there, but there is another group that will be using the lodge arriving after lunch on Monday. You may sign up for the extra day when you register for the Spring Retreat. The price for the extra day includes meals. If fewer than 20 people sign up, you will receive a $20 refund and we’ll buy some groceries and prepare our own meals. This extra day is not sponsored or supported by GSV.
Finally, please don’t forget the Spring Silent Auction that benefits GSV’s Financial Assistance Program. It’s really simple: You bring items that you value but no longer need and buy the treasures that speak to your spirit that were brought by others. All of the proceeds allow those with limited financial resources to join us.