We are only 2 weeks from KindlingsFest 2013 and as always last minute registrations are rolling in (We welcome them. Why not register?).
When I asked one last minute registrant why he waited until the last minute to register, he replied, “I wasn’t really sure how this year’s theme ‘Re-Imagining the Good Life’ was relevant to me”).
This surprised me. I am a child of the 1960’s, a generation that looked at the American Dream of our parents (work hard, go to college, get a good job, get married, have kids and buy a good house), and asked, is that really the good life? We were idealists who wanted to change the world. (Given my generation’s subsequent buy-in to materialistic pursuits, it must be hard for the younger generation to believe that many of us really did consider ourselves counter-cultural!)
After KindlingsFest 2012, where we took on the issue of creating an intergenerational future, we found that both younger and older folks were re-evaluating the American Dream. Many in the older generation did what was supposed to produce the good life and either ended up achieving it, but finding it unfulfilling, or because of the economic crisis, after years of sacrifice, have found that dream vaporizing just as they are entering retirement.
Many young people today are graduating from college and finding no job or a substandard job, are delaying marriage, facing huge debt from college and are realizing they may never ever be able to afford a house or anything close to what they have been told they should aspire for. They are asking, what does a good life look like for me, given these changing circumstances?
The savvy among older and younger generations have always understood that Jesus’ dream for our lives and the American dream never really fit hand and glove. Jesus suggested that rather than pursuing money, clothes, housing and food, we should pursue the Kingdom of God and righteousness (a life consistent with God’s values) and in so doing, we would find a more meaningful life.
At KindlingsFest 2013 our speakers and artists-in-residence will explore Aristotle’s question, “What is the Good Life?” combined with Socrates observation that the “unexamined life is not worth living.”
What a great opportunity for all of us, young and old, to rethink what our life is really all about and then to recalibrate our lives to a richer understanding of the “Good life.”
I’ll speak on “The Godward Life,” Art Miller on “The Shape of your Soul~The Seeds of Your Destiny,” Laurie Wheeler on “A Life With Others,” and Skip Li on “A Life For Others.” Poet Scott Cairns, artist Chris Anderson, the TJ Stafford Band, Nigel Goodwin and so many others will bring this subject to life artistically.
This year’s three Sundance films all explore the theme of a meaningful Queen of Versaille (Wed. 9:30PM), Gideon’s Army (Thurs 9:30PM) and Circles (Fri 8:30PM).
You can register for the entire event, or by the day. If you haven’t already registered, please consider attending this event in just two weeks. It is not too late and it could make all the difference in your world. If money is too tight, there are limited scholarship funds available.