We all know what it means to be headstrong, but what about heartstrong. Headstrong is a negative term for people who are impatient and unable to accept information or advice from outside of their own focused perspective or view. Unwilling to bend or be malleable to other ideas or ways of being that may not follow their particular beliefs.
Heartstrong on the other hand is not a word that is part of our language or part of our societal way of thinking. This rather saddens me as it is most likely what we need more of in a time of narrow one way thinking that seems to be getting more narrow and un-accepting as time moves on.
I think we are in a position to access our heart strength invigorating the power of love in a way that allows our hearts to speak through our every action. Being heartstong should be something we strive for and are proud of; our very actions of kindness and compassion to one another and to our own well-being would make us so.
I am suggesting we adopt in our vocabulary the word heartstrong and embody its meaning. Perhaps we might make it into a dictionary letting the movement move one another in love, light and joy.
Heart – strong: adjective:
/patient and kind, willing to have compassion for others
We have conditioned ourselves to believe that being in love is the highest aspiration we should have as people. Find our soul mate, fall in love and then be in love until the end of our days. That does not sound like the fluid and ever expanding magnificence that IS love.
Being ”in” love is letting love swallow you allowing it to cut off your breath, suffocating and losing yourself. It overpowers the YOU of you and love becomes more about the pretense of love, the manufacturing of love, rather than the act of loving.
It is in the act of loving that we enact the unconditional state of love. There is no uncertainty. No question. Love simply is present and therefore all that one needs regardless if the one being loved feels it or not.
It is said in religions that God is love. If this is true, then it should be eternal; ever lasting, flowing in all directions at all times, never in a controlling state, but rather always in the act of changing, growing, accepting and radiating.
Love is enough. We do not have to hold it hostage or hold others hostage to it. That would not in fact be love at all. That would be possession.
And so, it is, just like you said it would be….
And here I am on this last day of a self-imposed process of practice. What a lovely thirty days it has been. For those of you who have been traveling with me, thank you for your energy and support. Thank you for spending moments of your time to sip into my mind and my heart. I thank you for being with me and, in many ways, holding my hand helping me along the way.
It has been just a joy to steal time to write. It has been a pleasure letting thoughts drip to the page as I, word by word, grew in the practice of writing. There has been a shift in my faith as well as my courage, which now feels incredibly freeing and inspiring. Where I used to be afraid to share my thoughts and my words, I now am excited and proud at the developing process and skill. It is true, like all things, life and art is a practice.
So what now? Undoubtedly, there will be more practice. I have decided to spend some time on a project I am calling recycled poetry. I will spend some time diving into books and picking out words from the pages to collage together new thoughts and ideas through a more poetic form. I am feeling I need to spend a little time exploring new colorful language and creating a more expansive palette of imagery to better express my thoughts.
It is my hope that my vocabulary and word play will expand my abilities with the words as well as see how they affect the way in which I play with kinetic images in the new dances I am making throughout the year. I am on an expedition to uncover a new language landscape for myself and hope that you will share in this journey with me as well.
Looking forward to walking hand and hand again!
Ballet, body, body knowledge, contemporary dance, courage, Dance, Dance Appreciation, Dance Forms, Energy, faith, Jazz, light, Modern, nueral pathways, sharing, Soul to Soul, speaking body., Speaking with the heart, spirit, Support, Technique, training
We push the body to expand its limitations while embedding spirit with that training. Even though our bodies are not us, we are our souls that expand as the direct result of our training. In doing this, we build an intimate connection to all the emotions the body goes through while evolving through the rigor and technique as well as the continued rewiring and retracing of our neural pathways. We move mountains inside our physical selves creating space for place while expanding our souls creating space for grace.
It is the presence of this grace that exemplifies who we are as dancers; it is the energetic makeup of the performing kinetic body. It does not matter what kind of dance style we perform, what particular genre or technique; training is the act of deepening the physical and spiritual body so that we might allow the heart to speak through all movement.
It is this place that we should welcome our brothers and sisters in our forms embracing that we are all warriors of this thing called dance and that we share at our very essence the art of training, We should honor one another despite not understanding why we choose to manipulate or speak with our bodies differently. We should wrap our colleagues in support knowing that we too have needed loving arms to ease the burden of striving to better our physical and emotional selves.
It would be lovely to be able to see all our dance forms as building a larger community, understanding and learning from one another so as to expand our voices, build new audiences and drive the art form ever more deeper into our own hearts while sharing our humanity with an ever expanding audience.
Training for the love of dance is why we are here. Living for the love of life is why we share.
We should let joy be our rudder and courage our sails. If we are to cast off towards our dreams on a sea of constant change, we should remain faithful to our journey with the most joyful heart and courageous spirit. If we have these two characteristics as part of our arsenal, we are sure to journey with much laughter and good spirit finding ourselves collaborating with the elements regardless of their intensity.
We should let love be our light and laughter our energy. If we are to encounter our deepest fears along our journey, we should let love from our hearts light the dark caverns and laughter echo loudly against those walls. If we have these two sources of power deep within the well of our hearts, we are sure to journey with much compassion and understanding in ourselves and for others that there will only be congruent steps full of merriment for have taken this path.
Ballet, contemporary dance, courage, Creativity, Dance, enchanted life, happiness, letting go, letting go of noise, Magic, Modern, Moment, Now, peace, progress, releasing progress, silence, Soul to Soul, time and space, vertigo of progress, Wonder
Now is the moment. Right here, right now. We must let the past and the future melt away so that we can simply concentrate on where we are and whom we are with in this particular instance of time and space. It is here, in the sliver of time, all love is understood and creativity speaks. It is here that happiness and peace reside causing sorrow and suffering to dissolve.
Yet, we are face down in our phones. Preoccupied with having to prove we exist by our mere status updates and moment-to-moment monuments for ourselves. When is it that we became so important to the rest of the world and so meaningless to our spirits and ourselves? When did we lose connection to other human beings rather than media and machines?
We are simply human. We are magical beings that need space to live in the enchanted world that surrounds us. It is time to lift our heads to face the lives that are spinning out of control. It is time to rid the vertigo of progress from our manufactured worlds and realize the true momentum in our soul is proportionate to the energy we give being present in each moment of our existence.
Ballet, Conscious Living, contemporary dance, courage, Courageous Vulnerability, Creative Flow, Creativity, Dance, EBAS, listening, Modern, practice, Soul to Soul, speaking body., spirit, Technique, training, universal heart, well being, Wonder
Our bodies speak to us. They communicate our deepest needs as well as our finest joys. Our bodies are intelligent organisms capable of incredible healing and transformation. The limitations established for this magnificent organic machine are created by the mind that is no longer capable of listening.
It is important to listen carefully to the fluctuations of the body’s voice. Every shift and alteration of functioning should be understood and evaluated so as to better understand whether or not the change is a positive one or one that should no longer be engaged in. We must train ourselves to listen again and to fully understand what is good for our systems and what might need better attention or implementation.
This is crucial in the development and training of dance. We must focus on learning through sensation rather than sensationalize external pictures or forms. If we are able to train ourselves to listen to our bodies feeling the very musculature necessary for a technical application, we are more likely to fully understand the fundamental function and integration of that function in the larger tapestry of our practice. We must allow time for the recognition and reflection necessary to hear and feel the voice of the body.
This way of working is by no means an excuse to diminish the technical proficiency of our forms, but rather a way of heightening our awareness and understanding of how to engage our bodies in a more holistic and healthy practice of training our bodies establishing new limitless boundaries that support a more conscious and soulful form. We must understand how technique works to expand the limits of what we currently think possible.
There is so much noise in our dance culture that we are not able to sense or feel the artistry within the art. We have stopped listening and have only been manufacturing the external sensationalization of jumps, tricks and turns. No one longer wishes to establish a fundamental practice to support these very virtuosic activities and therefore find them no longer able to participate in the very activity they love because they have injured themselves. This seems to be a reflection of our culture and society with wanting everything possible immediately without ever having worked for it. The student becomes a hostage to a very flimsy house of cards in which hope can no longer be a reliable foundation.
It is time for us to take time to train through listening. It is time to slow down and allow the students to hear their own bodies so that they might make informed decisions in which they become empowered as artists, creative choreographers and educated teachers. The irony in slowing down is that you speed up the consciousness for the student. If a student achieves more awareness they are able to make connections and integrate their technical and creative process allowing their practice to function like the central nervous system in our magnificent machines; making neurological and physical shifts and changes at the speed of sound, the sound of their bodies voice.
There is a beauty in the training of the body: A comfort in the deep activation of musculature that reminds you of the magic of our physical abilities. Reaching deep into the spirit of oneself and realizing that you can open your mind wide enough in order to press away the boundaries of your movement while expressing greater range of motion and articulation, is truly a divine and euphoric sensation.
This awareness is the activation of learning through sensation. It is the place in which we should encourage our students to be whole heartedly committed to so that they can deepen their practice, strengthen their bodies and find the soulful creative connection of mind and body. This safe and secure place fosters the creative and expressive process. This is where the student should live while learning the art of dance and the enchanted act of choreography.
When a student explores their body with the confidence of sensation, being allowed the luxury of the present moment while feeling the magic of a technical principle, they then embody and honor the art form from the inside out. Movement then becomes a full expression of the human experience rather than a hallow interpretation of a misguided perception that is often projected on them by a teachers ego.
What if we could take the time to explore technique from the inside? What if we were allowed the luxury of taking time to fulfill the expression of a movement rather than pretend that speed is the barometer of success regardless of how well done the technical application actually is? What if we took the time with our students encouraging them to listen rather than imitate? What if we all weren’t in such a hurry to get to a place we deemed as successful and simply find the success in the training itself?