The Dao of Dance
A meditative, medicinal and community practice
"The interplay between the subtle degrees of intensity of the natural rhythms of existence sustains our World"
The Dao of Dance is a conscious movement practice that combines ancient wisdom and contemporary methods to create environments where people from all walks of life feel encouraged to delve deep into themselves in search of their own truths, feel able and empowered to heal themselves and their families, be inspired to strengthen their bond with nature and with the all-knowing compassionate Spirit that sustains all life, be fully present in their own bodies, cultivate love for themselves and for all others, unravel their potential, and blossom into their own true self.
With the aid of contemporary sound landscapes and guided exercises, participants are immersed in an adventure, a journey into the elements, rhythms and beats of the ancient maps of the Dao. The aim of this practice is to unfold a person’s spontaneous nature without the imposition of will.
Dance: We have archaeological records of humans dancing over nine thousand years ago. Even though mainstream information today tells us that dance is mainly a performing art or an activity to be enjoyed in nightclubs under the influence of intoxicating substances, it has been used as a healing practice in many different cultures since time immemorial. Dance, rhythm and music seem to have a soothing, regenerative power that has helped human beings survive the most difficult times. One example of this is the enslaved humans who have gathered throughout history to dance away their misfortune, knowing that, somehow, almost by magic, they would regain their power and their joy after the dance, and so they did, and so they kept on dancing. Dance is an invaluable tool for health, peace, and joy.
Dao 道: This translates as the way, or principle, of nature. By following the Dao, we are therefore certain to return to our own nature. It is characterized by the notion of “The Unity of Heaven, Earth and Mankind”. The basic concept of the Dao holds that all functions of the multiverse come from nature. Hence, as an element of nature, mankind should also follow such a spirit closely, without exception. The qualities of the multiverse are described as simple and easy, changing and unchanging. Daoist philosophers have mapped out numerous pathways to be followed in order for us to expand our consciousness. The work of the ancient Daoist sages is a deep, rich and extraordinary well of information about our own selves and our life on this planet.
The Map of the 8 Fundamental Elements
Within the Yi (multiverse) are Wuji (the underlying state of the undifferentiated world) and Taiji (the great polarity), where the two opposing forces, yin and yang, appear. The two opposing forces create four images, namely Taiyang, Taiyin, Shaoyang and Shaoyin, and these four images produce the eight trigrams. The eight trigrams are as follows.
Represents dynamic movement, activity, vitality, development and growth. The first impulse that awakens us. The first impulse that sets everything in motion. Thunder is for agitating ten thousand things, and nothing is swifter that thunder. It inspires people to change and improve their character. It cultivates patience and reverence for our ancestors.
Represents pliability, penetration, influence from others and flexibility. The sound and vitality of the forest. Wind/Wood is for twirling ten thousand things and nothing is more effective than win/wood. It inspires people to reflect on each other and evolve. Cultivates Integrity and awareness.
Represents expansion, ideas, illumination, clarity, brilliance and beauty. The shapeless shapeshifter power of transformation.
Fire is for unveiling ten thousand things and nothing is more warming than fire. It inspires people to inspire all around themselves. It cultivates a demeanour of respect.
Represents receptivity, surrender, kinship, abundance and grace. The materialization of home. Earth is for nurturing ten thousand things and nothing is ore generous than earth. It inspires people to perform good deeds. It cultivates virtuousness and love.
Represents joy, happiness, pleasure and contentment. The core of friendship. Lake is for satisfying ten thousand things and nothing is more gratifying than lake. It inspires people to praise the virtues of others and encourage their development. It cultivates ease in restraining from meaningless occupations.
Represents strength, vitality, originality and power. The pure creative source. Heaven is for organizing ten thousand things and nothing is more orderly than heaven. It inspires people to be the core of powerful action. It cultivates strength of character and fortitude.
Represents mystery and profound meaning. Infinity. Water is for softening ten thousand things and nothing is deeper than water. It inspires people to find their place in the Universe and to be truthful. Cultivates the ability to prevail, patience and to keep oneself focus on one's own true path.
Represents meditation, resting of body, mind, and spirit. The certainty of presence. Mountain is for bringing ten thousand things to conclusion and peace and nothing is more complete than mountain. It inspires people to nourish themselves and contemplate their actions. It cultivates healthy boundaries and self awareness.
"In dwelling, live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don’t try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.
When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you."
Lao Tzi. Dao De Jing. 6th Century BC