Dancing is expression of the Soul, reaching every corner of culture and religion. It touches upon the sacred in so many ways, from evoking energy to even releasing stress, to telling stories, building bonds, and expressing mood
Body movement spans the slow moving Tai Chi, to Yoga, or Qigong for health and enlightenment, while the Persian dervishes reach religious ecstasy through a twirling dance. Balinese temple dance illustrate through music and dance the stories of the gods and goddesses, playing out myth for the new generations. Bellydance arose from the Arab tribes as a dance to the goddess of fertility. Its said to even start by women for women to illustrate fertility and childbirth through the movements.
Dancing improves flexibility, endurance, strength, and agility. Dance decreases stress, can work out negative emotion, and even improves memory. (most any exercise also claims these benefits, but dance can be very fun).
From my own experiences with dances in ritual, I discovered the ground literally hummed with energy raised. We danced the Spiral Dance, all two hundred or so of us, to raise a cone of power. Hand in hand, sometimes breaking only to have hands find one another again, pulled along the trail of pagans in a looping dance at Midsummer.
The line of smiles and laughter passing by while we dance reminded me of the power of dance as building community as well as for magic.
Dance also helps work out the negative stuff we carry. Through movements and rhythm, you can pour emotion to a dance and this can help heal and express the stifled emotion that can poison your Spirit. Some emotional pain might take years, but the benefits of dance is shown to improve overall mental health.
Take the dance challenge: For the next month cycle, try dancing a bit each and every day.Play a favorite song and move to whatever the Spirit moves you. See how you feel after, make notes, and we’ll discuss the topic at the next moon cycle.