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Invitation to Dance: Soul Friend


We continue our theme this month of “Soul Friend” through the practice of dance (please visit our Community Lectio Divina practice, Invitation to Photography, and Invitation to Poetry which all explored this theme for February).

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 the theme of soul friend gently in your awareness, 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. A soul friend can help us listen to our own deep and wise voice within. Let dance be your soul friend today.
  • Play the piece of music below (“Listen to the Voice” by Chloe Goodchild – to receive a free mp3 version of this song subscribe to the Naked Voice email newsletter) 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. 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, phrase, or image that could express what you encountered in this time? (You can share about your experience, or even just a single word or image 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.

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6 Responses

  1. In my dance I became a bird – a butterfly – an eagle. Soaring, tumbling, flying through the air. It was extraordinary. I’ve felt the past two years to be a much needed cocoon of personal reflection and growth. Perhaps the time has come to break out of the cocoon! :)

  2. Today we celebrate the birthday of Ramakrishna at Ananda Ashrama where I sometimes go. He is the dancing mystic, and I so love to join him in spirit to the tune of Indian hymns and rthymns. It is like dancing with my African Sisters to their drums and heavenly chants…waving flower boughs with ecstatic faces turned upward toward Glory. We in the West have yet to develop a dance that allows us to be lost in God as we dance.

  3. Before the music, I was very moved emotionally as a dear soul friend came to mind and tears of joy trickled out of my eyes. But when I went to the music, although my body moved, my mind/emotions were affronted and could achieve no peace until I finally shut off the music. It was very strange to be so turned off by music. I literally felt the need to go to a different type of music for healing. But there remained a need to contact my soul friend immediately. When I did, she is in a bad situation – at a great distance from me so cannot help her physically, but can certainly pray for wellness and good outcome for her.

  4. That was fun! Right after I started dancing, Nola walked up and down my “desk”, meowing every once in a while! Toward the end, she was standing on my desk chair and reaching her paw out to me while meowing!! I guess she wants to dance. too!

  5. Just looked over this dance page and clicked on the music, simply listening and watching the video. Half way through a surge of grief and tears welled up and out of me so totally unbidden. I was taken back, never expecting this.