Saturday, October 15, 2005

dances of universal peace

I have attended the dances of universal peace off and on for eight years.

OSS (Open Space Sangha) got me thinking about how these dances are connected with the daily practice of living in open space.

i have to thank you, again, Wendy for starting this blog because it invites me to really consider os as a practice, not just something one does for groups.

The dances today had a much deeper dimension for me as a consequence.

It brought me to think about how i/we choose to participate in the dance not only effects what i get out of it but also the collective as a whole. Ever breath, every step, ever muscle. i noticed that my typical desire to get the step right distracted from the larger experience and i let go. And what a world then opened up.

Today's dances were devoted to the two planets: mars and venus- male and female energy. We walked the martian march: the soldier who blindly does what one is told, led by the solar plexus, just follows orders. How scary it was to access this male energy! And then we were invited to access venetian energy-- the walk of the woman who knows she's beautiful.

these were elements of male and female energy that i had never worked with before and they didn't seem to complement each other, but i tried to just let myself be open to this work.

Later we danced the gods Shiva and Shakti. This dance focused on Shiva as the shatterer of illusion and as the lord of creation. We also danced Shakti as source of creative energy. Shatterer of illusion. i imagined as a mirror breaking into many pieces. Where is the creation there, I wondered? Might this shattering of illusion be that very letting go that precedes open space?

In this dance, Shiva helped Shakti to deliver Ganesh. We learned of an instance when men have given birth, not in a physical sense but in a psychological involved the man has become in the pregnancy.

What is the teaching here?

i was hungry for more. i realized there is so much more on an archetypical level to these gods and what they have to teach us.

Can we smell and taste the creation that is happening around us the whole time?

Today i went for a walk in Sokolniki Park and was dumbfounded. It had rained overnight and the forest floor had transformed. Where there ground had been covered in maple and birch leaves, there was now a new layer: of pine needles. The scent of the air was sweet.

And yet the courage is in letting go of this sweet experience. To say, "that's nice." hang the hat and walk on.