Visit the Abbey of the Arts online retreat platform to access your programs:

Invitation to Dance: Holy Waiting

We continue our theme this month of “Holy Waiting” through the practice of dance.

I invite you into a movement practice.  Allow yourself just 5-10 minutes this day to pause and listen and savor what arises.

  • Begin with a full minute of slow and deep breathing.  Let your breath bring your awareness down into your body.  When thoughts come up, just let them go and return to your breath. Hold this image of “Holy Waiting” as the gentlest of intentions, planting a seed as you prepare to step into the dance. You don’t need to think this through or figure it out, just notice what arises.
  • Play the piece of music below (“Breath of Heaven” by Amy Grant, a song about Mary’s holy “yes”) and let your body move in response, without needing to guide the movements. Listen to how your body wants to move through space in response to your breath. Remember that this is a prayer, an act of deep listening. Pause at any time and rest in stillness again. For this month especially, sit with waiting for the impulse to move and see what arises.
  • After the music has finished, sit for another minute in silence, connecting again to your breath. Just notice your energy and any images rising up.
  • Is there a word or image that could express what you encountered in this time? (You can share about your experience, or even just a single word in the comments section below or join our Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks Facebook group and post there.)
  • If you have time, spend another five minutes journaling in a free-writing form, just to give some space for what you are discovering.
  • To extend this practice, sit longer in the silence before and after and feel free to play the song through a second time. Often repetition brings a new depth.

*Note: If this is your first time posting, or includes a link, your comment will need to be moderated before it appears. This is to prevent spam and should be approved within 24 hours.

You might also enjoy

Monk in the World: Michael Moore

I am delighted to share another beautiful selection to the Monk in the World guest post series from the community. Read on for Michael Moore’s reflection “Finding Hope on the Threshold.” When I was asked to contribute a Monk in the World guest post, I

Read More »

Some Updates from Your Online Abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, This past Monday our Wisdom Council gathered together online for our semi-annual time of reflection, inspiration, and planning. We are extraordinarily blessed with a group of 14 members who are heart-centered, contemplative leaders committed to helping Abbey of the Arts continue to

Read More »

Monk in the World Guest Post: Melinda Emily Thomas

I am delighted so share another beautiful submission to the Monk in the World guest post from the community. Read on for Abbey Assistant Melinda Thomas‘ reflection on statio is adapted from her book Sacred Balance: Aligning Body and Spirit Through Yoga and the Benedictine

Read More »

7 Responses

  1. What Michelle said. By the end it felt like a benediction, that I was pouring God over myself with each breath, like the psalm says about oil running down the beard of Aaron. (And given that I’m in the Coming into the Body class and this week’s theme is breath, it felt very appropriate)

  2. I felt held in sacred oneness with the Divine breathing. tears and joy mingled as I “danced.” And afterwards I became aware of how frequently, in light of fear and unknowing, I turn inward, close my tender spirit, and become small. This dance invited my heart to open and receive. quite a joy on this day after Christmas — thank you~

  3. Wow, this was a beautiful experience! The strongest sentiment I felt as a result of this exercise was ‘elevation’. My breath was in time enough to still everything to feel God’s peace, holiness, and elevation above all earthly things. Thank you for this post, I appreciate the call to dance with Him.

Comments are closed.