Continuing experiments with sending and receiving signals, my wish is to prepare my attention for the unexpected and become responsive to the messages of my body, my self.
I practice movement meditations that blend micro movements, spinning, and singing. One element of dance that is consistent to these experiments is curved motion, rising and falling in every movement and movement patterns that involve loops and spirals.
I may follow a sequence but mostly I practice listening to my inner messages and making shifts of direction and using pauses that seem to satisfy the flow of my sensations, emotions, thoughts.
Dance incorporates this kind of responsive meditation at the beginning of each Ballet or Modern class. These beginning sequences are often called Barre whether standing or laying.
A dance approach to meditation is different. For me it is important to understand what is involved in meditation and how it can help me to be more receptive to internal and external signals.
Dance has inspired and absorbed the wisdom of many traditions, one is meditation. Meditation is an attempt to be completely receptive, attentive to internal sensations, feelings, and thoughts. The process is to allow all these inner experiences to flow through the self awareness without interruption. By following this process, the hope is to train ourselves to an agility in our thoughts, emotions, and eventually our actions. The results can be peaceful or can be a flood of unattended emotions and fears that must be allowed to work their way through our self awareness.
Meditation is a ritual to follow and has been associated with holding ourselves in stillness and sometimes in a variety of positions as in Yoga.
Dance has also inspired and absorbed the wisdom of interactive prayer. Interactive prayer is the sending and receiving of messages that are designed to open the doorways to the person. Messages sent vary from gratitude to asking for openness. Messages received also vary from a kind of spacious anticipation to specific insights or even visions.
Interactive prayer is also a ritual that has been associated with both stillness, with singing, and with movement. Examples of singing range from communal singing to ritual chants. Examples of movement are monks walking a labyrinth and Sufi spinning dances.
Dance training mirrors this process as each dancer develops a receptivity to their internal messages, asks for an attitude of curiosity for the next moment, responds with melodic sequences that reflect their discoveries, and then hold a moment of silence to allow their whole self to integrate these experiences.
Tim Hurst. 04/05/17. D