I wasn’t in Band during High School. I was in a band, but not THE band. I was going to be a rock star, and it’s pretty obvious how that plan worked out for me. For the last ten years my wife has taken time off to serve as a nurse at the same band camp she participated in when she was in High School. I have been fortunate enough to spend the last weekend of camp with her four or five times now, and so have been fortunate enough to experience for myself the truly spiritual community that band camps are.
It’s not just the music, although music is intensely spiritual. It’s not just the drum circles, although drum circles are an essential part of Shamanic formation. It’s not just camaraderie, although that is part of the experience as well. What it comes down to is loving kindness.
It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are from, it doesn’t matter how awkward you may be socially, it doesn’t matter what is different about you, because all that matters is what bind you together: Music. As one of the volunteers said to Erin and me the other day, the drive home after camp is the worst part because you “are going back to the real world where everyone isn’t positive and nice to one another.”
In a very real way, band camp is the Kingdom of God living and active. Imagine a Church where everyone is positive and nice to each other and everyone is accepted for who they are. You HAVE to imagine it, because it doesn’t exist, but band camp says it’s possible if only we would make loving kindness our religion.
Sent from my U.S. Cellular BlackBerry® smartphone