Movements – Sacred Dances

Movements – Sacred Dances

The work of Movements provides special conditions that enable us to understand, through experience, certain aspects of the teaching that would otherwise not be so accessible.

The first aspect has to do with the role of the body. Usually the beginner does not really understand the meaning of the Movements. He is unaware of the relationship that exists between the state of his body and what he is searching for within himself. The Movements are a specific way of studying this relationship. At certain moments, they reveal to him the astonishing resources that his body can bring to the inner search when it is called upon in the right way. At other moments they show him to what degree the body becomes an obstacle through its tension and inertia.

Another aspect has to do with the importance of effort in the Work. The Movements show us the profound effect that efforts can have when they are made under conditions created on the basis of precise knowledge.  When seemingly insurmountable difficulties are overcome, the inner state of being changes.  Fatigue and other obstacles vanish.  Then one could say that the effort itself has had a truly transforming power. Feeling becomes more confident, thought clearer, the body lighter.  And when the experience is over, the body retains a trace of it.  It is no longer quite the same. It has been baptized, initiated. It is in a state of balanced well-being.

Then there is a third aspect having to do with aim. Theoretically, this may appear obvious, but in practice it is not so obvious.  One has to realize that the quality of what is experienced depends, above all, on the quality of one’s aim. If the aim is merely the pleasure of being in movement, of following the music, of being able to respond to the demand, a certain threshold cannot be crossed. The movement only has meaning when it is accompanied by that inner collectedness which Gurdjieff called a state of presence.

In sum, we can say that the work of Movements is part of a teaching, every aspect of which is oriented toward the development of consciousness. Engaging in these exercises, the individual begins to feel that he is trying to contact deeper energies in himself which, until then, were completely unknown to him.

 

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