Universal Significance of Dance

  • In the Acts of John, an ear­ly Chris­t­ian text that didn’t make the cut to become part of the “offi­cial Bible,” Jesus is quot­ed as hav­ing said ‘He who does not dance does not know what’s hap­pen­ing.’calvin and hobbes dancing
  • Dance is part of the very ori­gins of Tao. When the ancients want­ed to under­stand the move­ment of Tao, they danced. When the ancients tried to uti­lize Tao, they danced.

The shamans danced to bring rain. Priests danced in con­stel­la­tion pat­terns to call the gods. Med­i­ta­tors danced between their sit­tings for exer­cise and health. Medi­ums danced to invite spir­its into their bod­ies. Exor­cists danced to con­trol ghosts. War­riors danced to demon­strate their exploits and to hand down their tech­niques. Sto­ry­tellers danced to bring his­to­ry alive. Dancers danced for beau­ty.

You can­not think about dance. You can­not count the beats or tell your­self to do this step and that step. Instead, you have to act in a way that puts aside your every­day con­scious mind. You just have to dance. You can’t make it look any bet­ter than what it is, and if you are hon­est, you can’t make it any worse: you can’t hide your­self when you dance. — Deng Ming-Dao in Every­day Tao

  • We know how the move­ment of dance makes us feel: light and airy, ris­ing above the ordi­nary, float­ing above and beyond our­selves.

Why not use move­ment and dance to approach God every day? Why not make dance one of the sacred and joy­ous path­ways to God?

In dance, as in song and in music, there is the pul­sat­ing beat and rhythm of exis­tence, the excite­ment and jubi­la­tion of great rejoic­ing. But there is more. For dance involves the entire body; it is a whole and a holis­tic expe­ri­ence; it calls on every bone and mus­cle, every sinew and cell to praise God. — Rab­bi Wayne Dosick in Danc­ing with God

  • Rea­son­ing about God and oth­er ethics came late. Prim­i­tive man sought his answers in myth and rit­u­al; he danced out his faith before he thought it out.  — Hus­ton Smith in Great Reli­gions of the Earth

I’d like to thank MaryAnn and Fred­er­ick Brus­sat for pro­vid­ing this won­der­ful com­pi­la­tion of wis­dom about the ben­e­fit of dance in our lives.

They have a ter­rif­ic web­site: spiritualityandpractice.com.

It’s an incred­i­bly rich source of infor­ma­tion and inspi­ra­tion about all sorts of spir­i­tu­al prac­tices, teach­ers, books, and more.  Check it out!



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About Ronald Lavine, D.C.

Dr. Lavine has more than thirty five years' experience helping patients alleviate pain and restore health using diverse, scientifically-based manual therapy and therapeutic exercise and alignment methods. His website, askdrlavine.com, provides more information about his approach. Please contact him at drlavine@yourbodyofknowledge.com or at 212-400-9663.
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3 Responses to Universal Significance of Dance

  1. Pingback: Free Dance Class NYC

  2. Pingback: Janis Brenner and Dancer Injuries

  3. Laura Donnelly says:

    Very inspir­ing Ron — thanks!

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