Here's the quandary that comes up in my teaching from time to time:
Do I, from the outside and as the facilitator, give vocal cues of goodness to those who are dancing?
When I do, it tends to sound like this:
When I see and experience a “release of hunger in the body” -- as one student wrote to me recently -- I cannot help but let out a breath that is filled with awe.
When I see and experience the dancers “living in the beauty dream or whatever dream is presenting itself” -- same student, same email -- that same breath escapes me.
My natural instinct is to oooh and to aaaah and shake my head in disbelief at the raw courage of showing up and unraveling.
My natural instinct is to place my hand over my heart, and to feel the goose bumps on my skin as I watch the dance before me take shape, and live.
In those moments, a little cry of delight almost always escapes me.
But I also know that if I'm constantly commenting from the outside, then you on the inside, are possibly waiting for that cry from me, rather than cultivating that call of wonder that is all your own.
When I'm on the inside, having someone from the outside say “yes, exactly” or “wow”, irks me to no end from time to time.
Those outside comments can throw me off course.
They can pull me out of the underneath that I am following.
They can have me hoping for more ooohs and more aaaahs.
And when I'm hoping like that, I lose my way.
On the flip side, it feels quite nice when someone on the outside says “beautiful”.
It can drop me back in when I'm on my way out.
And then there’s this:
Someone said to me that when she first started taking class, she didn’t believe me when I made a comment about the beauty I was seeing.
She thought I was only commenting so that everyone in class would feel good.
After awhile, she began to realize that what I was saying was true.
She began to sense for herself that what was taking place in class was exquisite.
As she showed up, again and again, the external sound of my oooohs and my aaaahs helped her cultivate that internal call of wonder for herself.
So I don’t know.
At this point, I try to mix it up:
Long periods of silence where I say nothing and make no sound.
And when I can’t contain it any longer, a moment of glee escapes me and I'm plunked back down to my old ways of oooohing and aaaaahing, for I am forever astonished at the beauty of bodies in space, playing with time.
Your Dance Mission for the Week is to:
~ Find a quiet place to be
~ Notice your breath
~ Sense you body against the earth and carving into air
~ Follow what emerges in the listening
Value stillness as much as movement in this dance that you do for 10 minutes, sometime today.