How to Leave Your Offering at This Year’s Virtual Temple

Those of you who spend time in virtual worlds are aware that digital spaces can evoke powerful emotions. Engaging with this year’s virtual Temple — the Ethereal Empyrean Experience — has already proven to be a profoundly moving journey.

To start feeling the magic, take a few minutes to watch the Temple’s awe-inspiring preview video.

The Ethereal Empyrean Experience was created by the team chosen to build the 2020 Black Rock City Temple. It’s their generous answer to the community’s need for a healing Temple journey in a year when we’re unable to find solace beneath sturdy beams of wood and dust.

The Ethereal Empyrean Experience team has prepared these instructions to help you navigate the process of creating, leaving and sharing your virtual offering at the Temple.

Helpful Tips for Leaving Your Offering

Important Dates

Please visit the offerings website by Saturday, August 29, 2020 to ensure your offering is included in the interactive virtual Temple experience.

Until September 6, all are invited to leave a virtual offering at the Ethereal Empyrean Experience — to commemorate, let go, or acknowledge in all the ways you would in a Black Rock City Temple. Note: Only offerings created until August 29 can appear in the Temple; but all will be destroyed in the Temple Burn.

Starting August 30, you’re all welcome to visit and explore this resplendent digital space — whether you created an offering, or not. This is the full Temple 2020 experience where you can participate in an interactive Temple journey to view your offering and the offerings created by others. The interactive Ethereal Empyrean Experience will close at 8pm PDT on September 6, 2020.

On Sunday, September 6 at 8pm PST, join us for the Ethereal Empyrean Experience Temple Burn. True to Temple tradition, the Ethereal Empyrean team will ritualistically destroy and erase all hardware, data, offerings, and custom code, including destroying all virtual offerings. This radically inclusive, immersive experience will be accessible via any device and any operating system.

Entry to the Offering Website

To gain entry to the Offerings website, you will be challenged to correctly match images of the Man to the theme of the event year it was built, and to correctly match images of past Burning Man Temples to their names. This gate challenge represents the hard work we all go through to get ourselves to Burning Man, and it offers a chance to slow down and lean into the difficult moment to learn something new. There are links on the first page that will provide the info; if you have trouble, hints will be provided. Or you can click the link on the page to connect with a Temple Guardian for live help.

Your Key to Your Virtual Offering

Once you’ve correctly matched the entrance gate images, on the next page you will be given a unique URL created just for your offering. You must copy and save this URL in a safe place. It is your key to return to your offering on the website, and to visit your offering in the Ethereal Empyrean Temple once it’s open on August 30. We do not save your URL; there is no way to search it; you must save it in a memorable place. However, offerings left after August 29 will not be visible in the Temple experience; all will be destroyed in the Temple Burn.

Once your offering is “formed” you’ll have three days to add prose, photos, and audio files before it is “forged” (completed). To return to your offering, use the URL you saved previously and you will be taken to your offering. During the three days you have for to complete your unique offering, anyone you share your unique URL with can add content to your offering.

After you’ve fully forged your digital offering, make sure you continue to save your URL in a safe place. Once the Offerings website closes, the website will transition into the Ethereal Empyrean Experience. Beginning on August 30, use this same URL you received from the offering website to visit your offering in the interactive Temple experience as many times as you want between August 30 and September 6, 2020. The interactive Ethereal Empyrean Temple Experience will close at 8pm PDT on September 6, 2020.

You can also share the URL with family and friends after the offering is forged so that they can see the finished offering in the Temple once it opens on August 30.

Offerings Content

You can upload photos, prose, and audio files to your digital offering; plan ahead for what you’d like to include. For example, if you intended to leave a physical offering in the Temple this year, you can take a picture of it and upload a photo of the object to your offering. If there is a song you’d like to include, you can record the song on a recorder app on your phone and load the file into your offering. You could write on a piece of wood or cardboard with a sharpie (like you would in the physical Temple), and include a photo of that in your offering.

Intentional Attention

Schedule time for yourself to be undisturbed and fully present while creating your digital offering. You might find it helpful to light a candle, put on some music and make a date with yourself and loved ones.

Enter the offerings website here.

Starting on August 30, 2020, this same link will take you to the Ethereal Empyrean Experience, the Temple.

To help you step into the virtual world, we’ve included below the “How To Make a Virtual Offering” webinar we recorded live with Katie Hazard, Associate Director of Burning Man Arts, and Jeremy Roush, our Ethereal Empyrean Lead, on August 10, 2020. In the video, we explain the steps and answer questions of a volunteer who shares her screen while she creates a digital Temple offering.

Thank you for participating. It’s your heartfelt offerings that create the profound energy of the Temple we all know and love. We welcome everyone to create and share your offerings, and we wish you a healing experience as you journey through this new way to experience the Temple.

With love,

Your Empyrean Temple Team

About the author: Sylvia Lisse

Sylvia Lisse

Sylvia Adrienne Lisse has worked on large-scale, interactive art teams since 2013. She's created her own interactive art, and has worked on art projects for Burning Man, BM Regional events, Oregon Eclipse Symbiosis Festival, What The Festival, and for Sonic Bloom. Recent 2019 projects include: "Serenity," an Honoraria project with the Flaming Lotus Girls as a Seamstress and Welder, and, as an on-playa Build Lead with the Temple of Direction. Sylvia also volunteers as an Arterian with the Burning Man Artery. Between art projects, Sylvia works as a Travel Radiologic Technologist specializing in trauma and surgical imaging at medical centers around the US.

5 Comments on “How to Leave Your Offering at This Year’s Virtual Temple

  • Burner says:

    Is it when we give the money?

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    • Sky Wolf says:

      Good question.
      Offerings take on a different meaning in a decommodified Temple. There is no donation button or ask for money for this project. The Temple has been created by 3D artists and musicians, (who are Burners), who have donated their skills to create this Temple experience for the community. This is a gift to you if you feel you want to interact with it. The Ethereal Empyrean Experience is built on unnamed software that was developed and gifted to the project by a 16 year Burner. We aren’t sponsored by, promoting or launching any corporate product, there is no data tracking, no log in, and no password is required to interact with it. It’s a humble project that is meant to serve as a healing experience.
      We as Temple Builders build the Temple container and we gift it to the community. It’s the heartfelt offerings made by you, pictures, words, objects, expressions, etc, that fill the Temple and create its indescribable radiance.

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