In the 1980's, i joined with friends to form a ritual group which made yearly treks into wilderness, in mountains, desert, and seashores on the West Coast. We took all our children. We did so many "exercises" that brought our children into adulthood. Children did an overnight alone in the wilderness when they were 12-14, and were welcomed back into the community as adults. All adults did a wilderness overnight alone. We told stories around the campfire where everyone, including kids of all ages, added to a story begun by one person. We did two-person searches for special gifts from the wilderness, joining an adult with a child from another family. We specialized in giveaways in circle. I feel these experiences created very strong and creative kids, who were recognized as members of the family community. But the strongest feeling was that we were in charge of creating amazement in our own lives.
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