Radical Self Reliance. noun.
One of the 10 principles: Burning Man encourages the individual to discover, exercise and rely on his or her inner resources.
This is all about your ability to take care of yourself, to put on your grown up pants, (or tutu, or kilt) and take care of your own needs.
This could be your physical needs, which you can find lots of guides on line on how to do, what to bring etc. (ask in the comment section, and get directed to tons of them)
But just as importantly, you have take care of your mental and emotional needs. Burner events are great fun, and sometimes they can be hard. Sometimes you find yourself unexpectedly on an inner journey as big or bigger than the one that got you to the burn in the first place.
Plan as if you are the only one who prepared for this journey.
See preparation > event survival > radical self reliance
RADICAL SELF-RELIANCE, Though it has its origins on a San Francisco beach, the home of Burner culture is the Black Rock Desert — an expanse of dusty, unforgiving emptiness with no shade, no drinkable water and almost nothing alive at all. The idea of going to such a harsh place to throw a big festival requires a certain degree of competency from its participants. Along with understanding the risk of injury or death (see safety third), Burners also agree to bring everything they need for a week in the desert or whatever supplies are appropriate for the environment and duration of their regional.
Radical Self-Reliance is obviously at odds with other Burner Principleslike Gifting and Communal Effort. Very few theme camps or art projects at these events are one person efforts, after all, and it would be a strange Burning Man event for most if they ate only their own food and never visited a costume camp or a bar camp. Despite the best efforts of the greeters there are those who show up with few supplies out of laziness, whether they term it an “art project” to depend on community generosity or are planning on relying on sex appeal.
At the same time, the volunteers that make these events happen are some of the most competent people you will ever meet. They might be skilled in anything from welding to accounting, skills in many cases learned through a Burner project or gained through their connections with others.
Radical Self-reliance is one of the ways we discover our art — by relying on our own abilities, we learn what we are capable of and what we still need to learn.
The Lexicographer has been soliciting opinions from other thoughtful Burners on the Ten Principles. Below you will find another opinion, but more are still welcomed. Use the contact information at the top to send your thoughts.
From Kit O’Connell’s amazing Burner Lexicon! http://kitoconnell.com/writing/lexicon