Dance can be a way of ‘realising our connection to the cosmos ’ (Chodorow 1999 p.250)
‘The healthy social life is found when in the mirror of each human soul the whole community finds its reflection and when in the community the virtue of each one is living.’ (Rudolph Steiner)
The human Experience is primarily embodied. Our first dance is in the womb as we float, kick, twist and turn, to the orchestration of our mother’s heartbeat.
We experience our aliveness as we become present to our kinesthetic awareness
We can find a sense of belonging in a sense of place. Our sense of place is that landscape that we know through our bodies
Movement is the great law of life. Everything moves. The heavens move, the earth turns, the great tides mount the beaches of the world. The clouds march slowly across the sky, driven by a wind that stirs the trees into a dance of branches. Water, rising in the mountain springs, runs down the slopes to join the current of the river. Fire, begun in the brush, leaps roaring over the ground, and the earth, so slowly, so always there, grumbles and groans and shifts in the sleep of centuries ’ (Whitehouse 1958 in Pallaro 2006 p.41)
The ecological body is movement itself. It is a system dancing within systems. (Reeve 2011)
Wild Geese Mary Oliver yours, and I will tell you mine. Meanwhile the world goes on. Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of rain are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers. Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again. Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting- over and over announcing your place in the family of things. You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves. Tell me about despair,
Finding different ways listening so that we can attune to the unexpected and the unfamiliar.
Small moments of connection might flower between us and as fast as they emerged, they might also disappear.
‘The experience of having someone listen to my child and witness their experience without trying to improve them, or change them in any way, is remarkably powerful, remarkably simple, but remarkably rare.’ (one parent’s anonymous quote).
To listen with the body can help me define who I am in this moment. It can help me to open a space that allows you to be who you are. If I can really hear who is there, I can begin to find a way to care for you.
Abram, D (2010) ‘Becoming Animal’ Pantheon Bools, USA Casement, P. ( 2002) ‘Learning from Mistakes’ Routeledge, London Hayes, J (2013) ‘Soul and Spirit in Dance Movement Psychotherapy: A transpersonal approach’ : London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. Olsen, A (2014) ‘The Place of Dance’ Wesleyan University Press, USA Pallaro, P.(Ed) (1999) ‘Authentic Movement; essays by Mary Starks Whitehouse, Janet Adler and Joan Chodorow.’ Reeve, S. (2011) ‘Nine Ways of seeing a Body’ Triarchy Press, UK Sinason, V (1992) ‘Mental Handicap and the Human Condition’ Free Association Books Ltd. London Stern, D (1985) ‘The Interpersonal World of the Infant; a view from psychoanalysis and developmental psychology.’ Karnac books, London Snow, J. (1994) ‘What’s Really Worth Doing and How to Do It; a book for people who love someone labelled disabled.’ Inclusion Press, Toronto.