The word bhakti signifies a path to achieving salvation through loving devotion to a diety, regardless of race, sex, or caste. That is for sure what was happening this past weekend during Bhakti Fest held at the Joshua Tree Retreat Center.
A 3 day music festival bringing all souls together in celebration of this selfless devotional path of love. Inspiring the essence through kirtan, yoga, meditation, community, laughter, great natural foods, vendors, breath work and connection, the whole experience was magical.
Arriving at the festival, the energy is already luminous as the heat of the dessert sun streams mix in the air with pure Shakti. An infusion is cast up and outwards and it permeates your core upon arrival. Without much thought or spoken word even you find yourself gravitated to the palm readers, energy healers, food vendors and artists that line golden dirt paths and cactus lined aisles. The devotional chants of Kirtan are called out round the hour and you inhale the sweetness as your feet gravitate you forward to a vast tent of onlookers. Dancers glide up and limbs gracefully meet sky and heat. Words and phrases are echoed, invocations of the goddess who has now begun to leap in your heart consumed by the energy of the festival.
Perhaps you perch yourself on a rock, or dance merrily around the fire. Perfect for you if you are me, a stroll, an unrequited stroll encumbered with intoxication and desire to Larry and Luna’s Coconut Bliss station. You find yourself immersed in the dream that is a sweet and creamy vanilla coconut bar. The taste mixes with your heart and you are air lifted to the next tent where you begin effortlessly to flow in and out of yoga poses. Arms are carried by the air as your heart rests upon closed eyes on the side of a rock fountain in front of the great breath work hall. No work, you feel yourself say, forever and endlessly devoted, you give yourself to your deity, who endlessly greets you in thanks and nourishment so that you may give and receive forever.
This festival, is a unique expression so beautiful that the words, the moments, the smells, the tastes, the moonlight, the music, linger on your expression, on your lips, on your moments upon weeks that roll on and on, and you find yourself a week later still drunk with experience, pouring the bliss onto pages for an article, and urging the masses to join in on the next celebration because it’s that good.
You could talk about the enchanted melodies created by beautiful singers such as Saul David Rae or the enchanted passion that is a yoga experience with Shiva Rae or Kia Miller, or you could just say; go there. As with each unique soul’s expression of devotion, your experience will birth itself, and in this sacred vortex created that is Bhakti Fest, it’s bound to be blessed.
Om Shakti Om Shakti Om Shakti – Shakti Ma
Los Angeles Holistic Health Examiner