Dance- For the Spiritual Journey

Dance is the 3rd collage of 12 that I’m creating “For the Spiritual Journey”.  It’s a component that is part of some faiths but absent from others.  Rather than symbolize one particular religion or specific dance form, I chose to create a dancer who loves life & celebrates her connectedness to all things.  Her joy lifts her off the ground & stretches her beyond the edges of the paper.  She is Divine.

Dance- a way to connect to the Source of All

I’m fascinated by the way our spiritual paths are similar & respectful of the ways they differ.  Dervishes in the Sufi tradition whirl to reach a state of religious ecstasy.  Buddhist monks & Hindu priestesses may dance as part of a sacred ritual.  Pagans may dance around a fire or Maypole to celebrate important days on the Wheel of the Year.  Jews celebrate marriage, a sacred rite of passage, with dancing.  Some Christian faiths see dance as a way to praise their God.  My religious upbringing neither prohibited dancing, as some do, nor was it part of our spiritual practice either.  Even now, though my spiritual journey has taken me far from the faith of my family, I don’t dance to connect to what is greater than I.  I tend to follow a more contemplative, quiet path & that’s ok, too.  So many paths ultimately leading to the same thing.  Beautiful!!

If you are interested in learning more about how people express their faith through dance, check out some of the videos on YouTube.  Even if you’ve never seen dance as spiritual, perhaps you will now.  Blessings to you all!

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For the Spiritual Journey

In a few short weeks, I’ll be facilitating a workshop for women who want to continue exploring their spiritual journey in the context of woman-honoring cultures throughout history.  We’ll travel to various countries across several continents, studying matriarchal societies & the concept of the divine feminine.   I say “continue exploring” because many of these women have taken my previous workshops & want to continue their exploration in the company of other intelligent, warm, funny, spiritual women ranging from their teens to their seventies!

Leading this workshop is a bit like being a cruise ship captain, planning activities & excursions so each passenger can find the trip worthwhile & fun along the way.  Instead of shuffleboard & a swimming pool, I’m providing religion, the arts, politics, & history.

What does one pack for a spiritual journey?  Chants/songs, rituals, study, writings, personal experience, meditation, drumming, artwork, storytelling, dance, visualization, & service to others are the items which make the journey worthwhile.  Each participant will find that certain items resonate with her while others aren’t as important for the path she is traveling.  It’s ok.  Take what is needed & leave the rest.

My quick study of a jubilant African drummer in gouache & watercolor inspires me to create a body of artwork based on the spiritual items described above.  Soon, I’ll share them with you.  Blessings to you as you travel your own path.

Drumming is one way to explore & celebrate spirituality.