Responding to a general request for dances to use for an Armistice Day commemoration I wrote the following; a little of which relates to the request, to the meanings accorded to the event and the mentality of ideas and definitions that makes a kind of religion out of death, destruction, horror and cruelty; the insanity of war.
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I just happened yesterday to have read up a bit on how the Germans expected terms of surrender as per Woodrow Wilson's League of Nations ideals - but got crushing terms from their European victors, designed to destroy any prospect of Germany ever again being a threat in Europe. Is it not so that what we attempt to deny comes back at us - and what we try to prevent ever happening again becomes a sort of unconscious self-fulfilling script! History repeats itself until we truly own our own creation - that is - our own participance in defining ourselves and others in negative or segregative terms. As long as we identify - even unconsciously - in a mentality of war, we guarantee it into perpetuity.
I feel that rituals of remembrance can be vehicles that make 'religion' of war and suffering - as if terrible victimhood makes us special and apart from common life - instead of compassionately recognizing and embracing our suffering as a universal humility that calls for a greater perspective - a truly heartfelt perspective in which we join in this Life anew rather than joining in dark symbols of a past 'never to be forgot'. I actually feel that the moment loss itself is worshipped, the truth of the Life that is here is forgot. But I do feel for honouring those lost and our feelings of loss. Our capacity for full feeling is our Humanity - our Soul-connectedness... so different from emotionality.
Andaman Palikanari (Looks back in bittersweet blessing and then moves forward in hope.
Garuda (O where is my Spring?)
Heart Like a fire
Heaven today? (Few would have this in their repertoire as I made the dance but its sentiments align and one could make a simpler dance easily enough).
Hora Mirissi (I know its a bride's dance but its energetic of transition is a song that would hold meaning for me)
Misirlou - Sto Periagiali (I'd read out the poem).
Honouring the joining in new agreement and intent for a universal peace:
Lo Yisa Goy
Oh any of a number of dances.
Dances that celebrate partisan heroes - such as Kalamfil wouldn't be my likely choice - (as well as being a lengthy and steep learning curve for non dancers).
If this is for people who haven't a dance vocabulary in their bodies then not only might the steps be simplified, any piece of appropriate music could be chosen and simple steps made to suit. If not using live music where the qualities can be embodied then feeling for those recordings that have it - and not just dances that might line up but be dreary or unengaging. Going through the motions is aka 'empty ritual'.
The underlying process I engaged was of tuning in to what the event signifies collectively - and then opening in what it means to me in my willingness to embrace it, and then using that energetic as the basis of feeling what dances and music serve as vehicles for the qualities to bring present or invite in the hearts of others.
If one does under the aegis of external authorities, it is the tendency to 'tell' everyone what to feel rather than invite the feelings to arise from freely reflecting.
I embraced this response in a simple willingness and have enjoyed the process. Without joy is a loveless world with distant gods and grave and terrible secrets that demand sacrifice, over and over and over again.
If it serves you to embrace YOUR OWN process then great - that is my desire. In a sense it doesn't matter what you choose so much as that you feel at one with what you have chosen. Then your choices will have integrity and you will hold that presence in the way you hold and teach them. Of course you can be open to guidance from others - but the true guidance is always the discernment of our heart while we open to whatever. If we deny our own response-ability we give our power away to externals and this hides our presence rather than brings forth.
Now I'm rambling on in the themes that have arisen in me in this moment, in this day and this willingness - no one is required to read on or understand or be involved with anything that is not resonant or relevant to their desire.
We seem to have designed a consciousness and thus a world where only dire calamity brings forth the love we are. Love is not war, but recognition and service to the Life in All. Only a Prodigal Wasteland seems capable of waking our true relation and turning away from the false association.
"All wars are banker's wars", just follow the money and the consolidations of power that are effected under the guise of wars or financial crashes and revolutions. Perhaps the greater tragedy of war is the blindness that invests in, identifies with and re-enacts such insanity whilst believing itself free, righteous and justified. Over and over and over again.
I think it was HG Wells who imagined a time machine future in which humanity had split into two branches and contrary to first impressions, it was the beautiful ones who were simply farmed as prey by the others- and not in fact evolved excepting as their farmers designs had effected. Our mind is split - and while it is split, "we know not what we do" - because we are unconscious in large part by desire and design. I hold that the world we take as reality cannot operate as our reality when we wake up to our wholeness. Even in the midst of the symptoms of a broken world is there the potential for the reflection of Wholeness, of true Holiness. Not by our own power, but by the stirring of that Memory within which reaches to and yields to Wholeness. This may be covered over and denied - by our use of our minds - but still Presence-ing and Gifting Itself as the Life we share.
I enjoy word-play. "Ah missed this day" speaks of the life unlived. To embrace our day and live it in alignment with the joy that is discernable and can be acted from, is to extend joy instead of waiting for some future condition that the past - or others - or your failings - have deprived and denied you. But it is such conditional waiting that deprives us. The world will never meet our set conditions but terrifies or breaks our heart. Accepting an unconditional love is the releasing of our demands Life serve our agenda, and the transformation of our perceptions and therefore our behaviours and our experience.
I also notice war is the reverse of raw. To be unprocessed is to be pristine. A separative mentality has redefined our nature as fallen, evil, untrustworthy and flawed. It has then 'split' to limit, control and coerce this nature. Thus we limit the help that would reach us, usurp the movements that would heal and awaken us and refuel the mentality that imprisons us.
To be in the raw - is associated with nakedness of the body - but naked unto our Source is another way of signifying the movement of and unselfconscious spontaneity of joy. I read recently that fig-leaves were associated with ancient priests in the ancient middle east. The 'middleman' who usurps one's direct relationship with Life and becomes the owner and controller of the System in which everyone then has their 'life' through.
The psychology of such fraud is emerging as a sort of financial-corporate corruption that is no different at root than the mentality of the medieval dark ages, and it uses war and destruction as its means of concealment, and reinstatement.
I dance as an expression of Wholeness by living forth from such willingness to be moved and not hide or fear or be embarrassed by love's presence. It is something that was initiated by a self-inclusive act to join with, rather than set apart from. The steps give the mind something to do to get it out of the way - as a sort of permission slip for the heart to know itself in expression. All things then become a language or vocabulary for the reintegration with what truly never left a sense of sense of being cut off, denied, abandoned or betrayed.