These days I've been contemplating the theme of connection, in particular the conditions, tones and qualities that serve it's unfolding or slow it's flow. Both on the dance floor and off, the landscape of connection is filled with nuance of unspoken body language, thoughts, and relational patterns…energies, habits and hard wired conditioning. Becoming aware of the fabric that shapes us, and learning to allow each subtle or gross shift to become part of the ever changing rhythm of the dance can open space(s) for practice, growth, and the strengthening of connection…to our bodies, the earth, and one another.
Take a moment to sense and feel into the personal practices, environments and attitudes that bring you into greater relationship with the field of connection. How can these support you in growing your capacity to hold the conditions for it’s unfolding?
Begin by feeling into the qualities of this unseen energy. How do you know when connection is happening? When palpably felt, does it move slowly or quickly? Is it cloudy or clear? Close in or expansive? Short lived or long standing?
Sense into the conditions that support its unfolding. Notice when it arises and how it exists between you and another (person, tree, animal, etc). What keeps it alive and open and flowing…and…what may shut it down or take you further away?
When you notice a movement away, can you gently become aware of any habitual responses that aim to protect, but tend to disconnect? How can you gently welcome them in, allowing them to be part of the interconnected web of who you are without running the show?
Brene Brown says that connection is an energy that “…exists when people feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment." Offering this kind of open hearted attention - toward ourselves and others - includes deep listening and reflecting back from a place of unconditional openness, curiosity, presence, etc. Although some of us access these places more easily on the dance floor, when words are left aside, others may find more ease and ground when the empty spaces are filled with language. Our individual nervous systems, preferences, habits and wounds will shape if/how/when we soften, open and connect…or guard, separate, and maintain distance.
Exploration: From Sole to Soul - Connecting through your feet.
Earth - Begin by feeling your feet on the earth or the floor beneath you. Send your energy downward, sensing and feeling into the points of connection in the toes, the heels, the inner and outer edges. Root yourself - here - as you breathe with and as earth. Allow for an exchange of energy through your feet. Feel your connection to place.
Body - With compassion and free from right/wrong thinking, explore being amazed by the intelligence of your Soma and it’s ability to regulate and remain upright in the world! If it supports your sense of connection, place your hands on your skin, press into the muscles, knead down to the bones. Come to know both the surface and the depths of your experience.
Be gentle. Be kind. Be welcoming to all that arises, giving thanks to any aspects that have contracted/protected/served while making space for all that yearns to soften/stretch/expand.
Movement - Potential track for exploration: All Blues by Miles Davis
Explore new ways of connecting with yourself by befriending the nuances and intricacies of sound and movement, impulse and response. Trust your movement, engaging with curisosity when to express, move, listen or pause…when to turn around, stay, persist or desist. The dance as practice is an infinite landscape for learning. Each breath - each step - each impulse creates an opening for opportunities to arise. Tune into the moment and the space that you’re moving in. Connect with your own rhythm, gestures, expressions and sounds.
Relationship - Follow your feet through the space…moving forward, back, side to side, up, down…coming towards then away from a tree, a plant, a cloud or another dancer. One at a time, each relationship opening new doorways of connection.
Notice what qualities or attitudes bring you into greater relationship with the field of connection.
When connection arises, notice how it exists between you and another (person, tree, animal, etc). What keeps it alive, open and flowing, and what may shut it down or take you further away?
When there is a desire to move away, notice if your impulse is current or pulled by habitual responses that aim to protect. Can you allow any tender places or habits to be part of the dance while also re.newing/re.educating your way back toward connection?
Nearly everyone I know is looking for a greater sense of closeness or connection to their own existence. Learning to hone these skills is a fine art and life long practice, but one which can expand your capacity to rest in and experience the mystery that pulsates from sole to soul!
I look forward to hearing what you discover! Love, Teresa