The Firefly Gathering is one of several "rewinding" or "primitivism" camps for learning self-sufficiency and wilderness skills and crafts like fire-making, mushroom hunting, canning, diaper-free parenting, trapping, and cooking wild game (and, er, road kill). Turnstyle's Mike Belleme brought his camera to camp. (Warning, some of the photos of animal "processing" may be upsetting to some.) From Turnstyle:
"Rewilding: Primitivists Take it Back to Basics"
Tanning a hide and making buckskin shorts is hard work, and making fire by rubbing sticks together is frustrating and tedious, but participants say the result is a profound sense of understanding the materials that you work with. Firefly co-founder Natalie Bogwalker explained, “Firefly is here to stave off the amnesia of modern technocratic culture…When normal people come here they are really inspired and feel that things are possible…"
To some who attend the Firefly gathering, the primitive skills that they learn simply serve as a novelty or a fun way to spend a weekend. To others, the skills that are taught and shared at the gathering are a part of daily life and survival. If the predictions of many of the primitivists at Firefly are accurate, the imminent collapse of civilization will soon make these skills a matter of life or death for us all. If there is one theme that seems to permeate all aspects of the gathering it is connectedness. “It’s all about rooting ourselves deep into the earth and into our connections with each other,” said Bogwalker. She continued, “…when we look all around us and people aren’t interacting with each other, they’re like, looking at their iPads…they’re all like robots, half human half machine… it’s really creepy to me.”