I know the music has touched you. I know you’ve felt those moments, sober or not, where you melt into the experience. I’m here to tell you that you can have that tranquility in you all the time, and you already do. I felt it this weekend. I could tell some of you did too. If you keep thinking of the music and the lights as an escape from your normal “mediocre” life you will miss the mystery they’re really conveying. Constant change. Flow. Love.
Looking around the Bayfront Stage with Claude VonStroke followed by Adriatique, I could feel the compassion in the music in such an incredibly genuine way by so many people there. There's just something about people's eyes that soften when they finally feel the joy that comes with giving up questioning their place in the world.
As those sets wound down, we moved over to Mainstage for Above & Beyond, which was by far the most influential set I have ever seen. Yes, the visuals were amazing and I am a huge fan of theirs, but that wasn't why. The world had a message waiting for us.
“Feel the rain!” the world said. Yet people were fighting it, you could see it in their eyes. They didn’t want to be wet. This was not the Ultra they had imagined. They wanted to be somewhere else. And the world made that message even clearer when the rain stopped, the visuals came back kicking, and the people remained consumed by their own self-interests, not set on smiling until they got “where they were going.”
Delusion has a multiplicative effect. You see someone else miserable and you allow yourself to think, “well he’s miserable too, this is just how it has to be.” Or you say “look at her, she’s so gorgeous/rich/smart but she’s not even that happy. I have no chance.”
I’m not here to bash MDMA or alcohol, but merely to tell you that you will see a lot of benefit in your life if you take the time to reflect on the patterns of your emotions. Try to tell me one time where you felt an “up” with no “down” and you will search for centuries. What about those moments where you had a lot of money to spend; you had to figure out how to spend it all because you just couldn’t afford everything. Don’t fall for the trap of thinking that you need anything outside of this present moment. The step towards your release from dissatisfaction begins right here, right now, with you and a beat. Focus on it. Questioning your place in a world so vast is to miss the point - you're here right now!
After the tragic incident last weekend, yes, Ultra must reassess their security practices. But why did that poor lady get harmed? Because people feed themselves with wants until they do wicked things. This is the same fundamental delusion that causes wars and homicides. There is no way to fight for what’s right in the world unless you love one another and have a means for changing people’s psychology. But we have those means. We have the music, the fast basslines, the fireworks, the endless stimulation and it’s all coming together to tell us to check our egos!
Once we begin to, we will find a purpose so pure for ourselves in this world. So here's to Ultra 2015 - Our Work is Never Over.
By Edward Fancher