We did it!
After many years in the making, (with unbelievable obstacles including several years of postponing because of the pandemic,) we gathered our soul families in the high desert in Southern California for the 2nd Family Fusion experiment. Our mission is to explore a radical redefinition of family, learn about consent, and age-appropriate sex education, belongingness, inner child work, body positivity and expanding our capacity for PLAY.
It was a deeply committed group that came in from around the continental US, Hawaii and Germany!
Now that the feedback is all in, I want to harvest the groundbreaking experiment and share the testimonials.
Before we celebrate this journey, I need to thank those of you who’ve expressed your concern for the children’s safety on social media and share a letter I wrote about the topic of SAFETY.
Letter about Children’s Safety
To whom it may concern,
Thank you for taking the time and energy to express your concern. As the lead facilitator (and mother of a child in attendance), I hear and share your value for making sure the children are well tended to. I want to assure you that all children will be fully chaperoned/supervised by their own legal parents and guardians. This camp has more communication and supervision than most summer camps which separate the kids from their parents.
We have a strict code of conduct that include no drugs, alcohol, or inappropriate sexual conduct between minors or anywhere near them. We also have a screening process before we begin and all the adults in attendance have done considerable personal growth work. The family cuddle temples are fully clothed and there is never pressure for anyone to do anything if they are uncomfortable. Bullying is not tolerated and we will be teaching boundaries and consent so that children can navigate age-appropriate touch.
And finally, we have an experienced faculty (who are also parents and grandparents) who are here to support our kids in realizing their full expression within a supportive tribe!
Thank you for your trust and care. –KamalaDevi McClure
Harvesting the Social Experiment:
Much of the Magic of Family Fusion is that it is run like an old-fashioned “one-room-school-house” where all ages can learn from different life stages, from grandparents to toddlers (we even had a pregnant woman!) To warm up the dancefloor each day we played games to music (often using the teenager’s playlists, and held a 5-minute mini-meditation to open the heart.
We set out to transmit deep teachings and rituals about sacred sexuality without underestimating the innate body wisdom of the kids or talking down to them. Meanwhile, we must not oversimplify the complexity and nuances of human relationships and life force energy! This is an embodied remembering of what our hearts already know about what it means to be human. Our teachings are for the Immortal, ageless soul. We use ritual theater, spiritual parables, and archetypal legends that speak to all ages.
The essential journey is based on the spiritual s@xual Shamanic Level 1 weeklong training which starts with boundaries, emotional release, aspecting, and moves into deep teachings about the masculine and feminine as a non-binary spectrum. We held family-themed temples at night and after the kids are safely off to bed we have optional adult-only spaces. This venue boasts of a wonderful pool where the kids would go to play games under the supervision of a few lifeguards and rangers while the adults meet to discuss parenting, NVC communication, re-parenting, and do shamanic breathwork journeys to reclaim the magical child. Some of the most memorable highlights included smores by the fireside and when the kids made us kabobs and learned knife skills in the kitchen with Kayla. The week culminates in a rite of passage journey where each family member offers their gift in a Carnaval setting designed to follow the ecstatic current and expand our capacity for pleasure and play!
Team Photo: Philippe Lewis, Kamela Peace, Rich Priddis, Katerina Phoneix, Michael McClure, Naya D’Antonio, Crystal Dawn Morris, KamalaDevi McClure, Sarah Love, and Jacob Troy.
REFLECTIONS ON THE FACULTY:
I initially visioned Family Fusion together with Michael McClure, my husband of 20 years. Having our son in attendance now for the second time was a profoundly meaningful experience for us. I used to feel the separation between my blood family and my family of choice, but since co-creating this retreat, I experience us all as a soul family.
Michael brings humor, depth, insight, & play into the space. Personally, I was able to coach and empower everyone on my team to bring out their best. I truly thrive when I’m surrounded by family.
Crystal Dawn Morris has dedicated her life to this work. She brings wisdom and experience as a grandmother and Midwife (who’s been to thousands of births!) She brings both her expertise and her vulnerability. Her childlike enthusiasm is as exuberant as any of the kids!
Rich Priddis is also a grandfather and boy scout who had so many wonderful ideas for the kids. He created fun playlists and brought black lights, and face paints, led egg relays, and came up with a new way to teach consent. He brought air balloons, water balloons, and punching balloons for emotional release. (“Oh dear!” became our catchphrase for the week.)
Although not officially on the faculty, I want to give an honorable mention to Jacob Troy who showed up HUGE as the Game Master and improv comedy teacher. Because of his background in art and theater, he worked with Michael to act out social agreements and other skits and is a master storyteller. He was enthusiastic, impeccable, and inspiring throughout the week.
I hope to work with everyone on this team again in the near future!
“Having kids, elders, mothers fathers, pregnant-mothers-to-be, aunties, and teens all in one place created a magical cauldron for all parts of me to come out and play. Because of the representation of these family members my inner family dynamics, pains and joys came to the surface. My inner little girl felt safe and included like never before. We went through rituals together and reclaimed lost teenage parts and I learned to accept myself just as I am.” —Naya, age 30
“Great people, friendly, open, caring positive. I learned how to express my emotions, boundaries, wishes, and desires. I had lots of new experiences and lessons which I consider very helpful for life.” –Anonymous, age 17
“I’m glad I came because it helped me with so many things, like having a better relationship with my dad. I made new friends and connections. Awren Becerford-Wood.” –Age 11
“I loved all of it and could gush & gush.” –Annonymous
“I was afraid for so long of losing my partners of being alone and helpless without love or support in this daunting world. Then I found myself alone, participating in family fusion without any of my partners and I felt so completely supported and so in love. In love with this family, this incredible land we were lucky to call home for a week, with the mysterious magic guiding my path and with myself–embedded– So gratefully within this web. My heart is exploding. I’m realizing that romance is lovely but self-love and community are essential. This is sustenance.” Liv, 28
It’s a really fun experience being in the desert – not like I’m used to. It was fun seeing the bugs. It was great to connect with other kids here. –Anonymous, age 11
I feel more connected to the people around me. I’m letting go of old perceptions and constructs. I am having an experience of unconditional love and openness! I gained a deeper connection to myself and my emotions. –Anonymous, age 21
I came with my 11-year-old daughter and we both found it to be one of the most healing and transformational experiences of our lives. Being in a deeply loving supportive container with other families helped me see with clarity the stories of separation that have held me back my lost innocence, playfulness, and hope for the future. One piece which surprised me was how it healed my inner child in ways my previous 5 experiences (with this mystery school) had not fully addressed. In many ways, I feel reborn as a child of love and innocence once more. And for my daughter, I am in deep gratitude that this event exists. It has brought us together and now she has a resource that I as a parent have struggled to provide for her. –Anonymous, age 40s
I have struggled with anxiety and depression most of my life from some of the woundings of my childhood. Family fusion has helped me integrate my wounded child and bring them (I am non-binary) into love within the deep container of my heart. The integrity and collective wisdom of the facilitators and tribe has brought me to my knees in gratitude. – Annonymous
“This experience gave me the opportunity to have lots of deep belly laughter through lots of playfulness. My inner child got to be silly and have the kind of fun that I missed as an adult. Enjoying the deep connection to the tribe and creating a loving community of family was nothing short of incredible.” –Anonymous.
“I especially loved the kid-teaching session where the children made a presentation for the adults and I was impressed with how the integration of the kids and families worked so well.” Anonymous, 59
“I really appreciated doing the inner work not only in the community but with my family in the community. I felt we were well held and able to take a closer look at ourselves while learning vulnerable lessons about topics such as consent and sexuality. I loved that such work was interwoven with fun and games which allowed my inner child to come out and play.” Paget, 50
“I got to feel what I would have wanted in a perfect childhood home and presto it was there! I was able to create a new way of engaging with my family, feel the experience, and then take those teachings and memories back to my beloveds. My son was reluctant to attend but had wonderful experiences and made lifetime friendships.” –Anonymous, age 58
“A taste of the tribal family. An experience of being held and supported as a family within a larger family.”-–Anonymous
“I got to witness my son (age 7) opening up with others in a way that felt good for him. My ex-husband and our child and I came together as a family for the first time since the divorce and it was transformational and healing as co-parents to feel the support of the tribe with the love and support of all. It opened a safe space for us to share more vulnerably with one another in a new way. It gave me hope and an opportunity to see new possibilities for our community structure. I am so grateful and look forward to the next family fusion.” –Bre, age 36
“Family Fusion is an exceptional experience of what it’s like to live in a loving tribe of all ages that interact with one another from a true family vibration. It gives parents the extraordinary experience of seeing their children reaching out to other adults for affection, support, and connection and it allows kids to have adults who are not their parents become their friends, confidants, and support system. It’s revolutionary for all ages and experience levels relating to sexuality and shamanic teachings.” Anonymous, Age 39
“This workshop is brilliantly crafted to bring light to aspects that have remained shrouded in cultural shame and shadow. I was impressed with the thought and care that was given to the flow of the week. The schedule had abundant flexibility and spontaneity. It was great to see my daughter hear other adults talk openly about their first sexual experiences or scary times in their life. Although my daughter showed some resistance to some sessions, she was not shamed and was accepted, heard, and honored for who she is.” –Biko, 59
“TOGETHER WE GROW AS FAMILY. This is what I’m left with after a week with kids, teenagers and adults all learning and growing as one: we cannot and will never be able to do it alone, for it is together that we can truly know ourselves and each other, that we can become sovereign humans and make better choices for ourselves and each other, that we can truly care for our inner critic and inner child and inner parts as we care for our own children and as we care for our parents and elders as they fade into death. This is the true work of love and community.” –Phillipe, Father & Organizer
If you are interested in future Family Fusion Summer Camps let us know and we will post on KamalaDevi.com/events as soon as our next retreat is scheduled!