I have no solution for Learned Helplessness (check the post and the moving comments). But I know one thing:
Everything moves. And everything moves to a rhythm.
And everything that moves produces a sound; that is happening here and all over the world at this very moment.
Our ancestors noticed the same thing when they tried to escape from the cold in their caves: things moved and made noise.
The first human beings perhaps looked on this with awe, and then with devotion: they understood that this was the way that a Superior Being communicated with them.
They began to imitate the noises and movements around them, hoping to communicate with this Being: and dancing and music were born.
When we dance, we are free.
To put it better, our spirit can travel through the universe, while our body follows a rhythm that is not part of the routine.
In this way, we can laugh at our sufferings large or small, and deliver ourselves to a new experience without any fear.
While prayer and meditation take us to the sacred through silence and inner pondering, in dance we celebrate with others a kind of collective trance.
They can write whatever they want about dancing, but it is no use: you have to dance to find out what they are talking about.
Dance to the point of exhaustion, like mountain-climbers scaling some sacred peak.
Dance until, out of breath, our organism can receive oxygen in a way that it is not used to, and this ends up making us lose our identity, our relation with space and time.
An extract from The Witch of Portobello posted by Paulo Coelho on his blog.
Paulo Coelho posted a different video on his blog, but I could only watch the video for less than a minute as I could not stomach watching the anorexic dancers. It made me feel ill looking at them.
The Bolereo performance, which I have used, is the breathtaking routine by Torvill and Dean at the 1984 Winter Olympics for which they were awarded a Gold Medal. They were awarded perfect 6 by all the judges. Something that had never been achieved before and has never been achieved since. Watching one loses all sense of time and space, it seems to go on for all eternity, one is spellbound. It is one of those performances that sends shivers down the spine.
To quote William Blake
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.
I agree with Paulo Coelho, there is something about dance, and to that I would add music, that lifts the spirit.
What is underlying is rhythm.
Maybe, and I am guessing, it is rhythm that underlies the very foundation of life.
Visit any culture, be it in time and space, and music and dance are at the heart of that culture.
I can be in Puerto de la Cruz during La Carnaval. The people do not walk, they move to the rhythm of the music.
That is why it is sad and depressing that music has been hijacked by big business and lousy programmes like X Factor to the detriment of music. I can find better music on the streets of Brighton. And why is it better, because the people enjoy playing it, they are communicating with the Soul of the World.
Dance has been degraded to clubbing.
Clubbing: go out, get drunk, throw up in the street and pick a fight.
A friend is a Street Angel. Street Angels are volunteers who patrol the streets at night looking out for the vulnerable and defusing trouble. In essence picking up the pieces of a broken society. [see Talking with a Street Angel]
I love where in the film of The Witch of Portobello Carolena Sabah who plays the part of Athena does her dance routine.
Hildegard von Bingen talked of herself being ‘a feather on the breath of God.’
Handel’s Messiah was an inspiration from angels and an attempt to capture their voices. On completing the ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ Handel is reported to have exclaimed ‘I think I did see all Heaven open before me and the great God Himself.’
If there is one thing that makes us difference from the rest of God’s creatures it is not what we arrogantly claim to be our superior intelligence, it is music. Yes, other creatures may sing, but they do not make use of musical instruments.
For my lovely Hungarian friend who likes dance, skating and Paulo Coelho.
And for my lovely friend Sian who loves to dance.
Synhronicity: I was in a bookshop today. I let a lady go before me as she was laden down with books. There is one book you have missed I said, and you are very lucky I have not taken it, The Witch of Portobello. Her eyes opened wide. That was the one book that caught me eye she told me, but I did not get it as I did not know the author. Well now is your chance I told her, and she added it to her purchase. I then told her the story of the stone as told by Ken Crane at the end of Paulo’s St Joseph’s Day party. His wife Yumi picked a stone. When he was asked to pick a stone, Ken picked the same stone. The stone was called The Alchemist Stone! I knew Paul had posted this story about dance, but it was only when I got home this evening I saw it was taken from The Witch of Portobello! [see The Witch of Portobello in a bookshop]
Synchronicty: I knew Paulo had written on dance, but my thoughts on dance were before I had read what he had written. I then read what he had written and found he had written similar to myself! All I had noticed was the anorexic dancers and decided Torvill and Dean gave a far better performance of Ravel’s Bolero.
Synchronicty: I am currently reading The Eight (highly recommended) and if there is one underlying theme it is that of rhythm.