What is The Dance?



At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless; neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is …

Dancing is the way to be in the world.

I get up. I walk. I fall down. Meanwhile I keep dancing.

True dance comes from within and has no need of exterior decorations. It has only the beauty that rises out of the soul with the coming of inspiration, and out of the body which is its vehicle. To dance is to live.
Isadora Duncan

As far as I know, dancing and laughter are the best, most natural, easily approachable doors to it.(No-mind). If you really dance, thinking stops. You go on and on, you whirl and whirl, and you become a whirlpool – all boundaries, all divisions are lost. You don’t even know where your body ends and where the existence begins. You melt into existence and the existence melts into you; there is an overlapping of boundaries. And if you are really dancing – not managing it but allowing it to possess you – if you are possessed by the dance thinking stops.

… when you are dancing you are not intent on getting somewhere.
The meaning and purpose of the dance is the dance.
Alan Watts

I can’t tell you what the meaning of life is but I can dance it.
Woody Allen

Whosoever knoweth the power of the dance, dwelleth in God.

When you dance you can enjoy the luxury of being you.
Paulo Coelho

The human body is a prayer rising and falling in the waves of our breath. Each movement a new dance, a fresh touch, given shape by the threads of spirit woven together in that moment.

There is more wisdom in your body than in your deepest philosophies.

The psyche is never in perfect balance or harmony because life is all about movement.

I have sent you my invitation,
the note inscribed on the
palm of my hand
by the fire of living ….
Don’t just say “Yes.”
Take my hand and dance with me.

And here is Hafiz translated by Daniel Ladinsky. One of his publishers is Harper Collins, New York:

Now, sweet one be wise.
Cast all your votes for dancing.

I have chained my every dancing atom into a divine seat in the Beloved’s tavern. 

Every child has known God.
Not the God of names.
Not the God of Don’ts.
Not the God who does anything weird.
But the God who only knows four words.
And keeps repeating them, SAYING,
Come dance with me….
Come dance….

Next, from his poem, I Wish I Could Speak Like Music:

I wish I could speak like music.
I wish I could put the swaying splendour
Of the fields into words.

So that you could hold Truth
Against your body
And dance.
Hafiz just wants you to hold me
Against your precious

And dance,

And I’ll give the last poetic words to Kahlil Gibran who wrote:

She danced the dance of flames and fire
And the dance of swords and spears;
She danced the dance of stars and the dance of space,
And then she danced the dance of flowers in the wind.

But I would like to end this with the active rather than the philosophical side of dance as represented by the students of the Canadian College of the Performing Arts, located in Oak Bay Village where I live. This is the  school that really attracts and develops the best young talent from across the country and, occasionally, from elsewhere.  In the first picture the students are on stage, in 2008, at the Royal Theatre, performing in a bi-annual event in the Pops Concert series, with the Victoria Symphony Orchestra seen in the background. A couple of years ago they brought some of the musical South Pacific to the same stage.



And here are two of the 2013 graduates who made me feel really welcome as a volunteer. Both of them will now be pursuing their careers in Vancouver.


Louriza Tronco

Louriza Tronco

Emily Schultz

Emily Schultz

Louriza, from Winnipeg, is the smallest person in the school. But when she dances, which is her forte, not only is she beauty and poetry in motion, but she does so with the intensity of fire. Nothing is held back. Literally, life exulting in its aliveness.

Emily, from Edmonton, I would be tempted to call your classic “all-rounder.” A singer and choir leader, who can also dance a storm, and, I discover later, an accomplished percussionist. She also just did a great job acting the role of Miss Jones, an elderly executive secretary bent over with osteoporosis: If it hadn’t been for the programme, I would not have recognized her on the stage. The musical, “How to succeed in Business” was her last college performance. She is not in the “No coffee!” picture below but Louriza is ~ black and yellow dress.