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Conscious Dance: The Dance of the Soul

Updated: Oct 23, 2019

No need to learn a specific technique, or follow any steps or choreography. The only thing you need to follow is your soul.

Conscious dance, also known as therapeutic dance, intentional dance or meditative dance, is a form of dance in which the movers are guided to move freely and spontaneously, without the need to follow specific steps. There's no teacher instructing a choreographed routine but rather a facilitator who sets the theme, tone and intention of the session. It often involves music designed to take you through a journey of introspection, often leading to a state of trance or awaken dream. It can be done by anyone regardless of prior dance experience, physical ability, levels of fitness, or body shape and measurements. There’s no wrong or right way of moving. It’s about how it feels and not about performing or what it looks like.

It’s a growing movement and some even say it’s the new yoga. The diversity of types of conscious dance - more than 100 listed by the Conscious Dancer Magazine - may attest to its growing popularity. Some guide the mover through different brain waves (e.g. Inner Dance), while others use the chakra system (e.g. Chakra Dance), different rhythms (e.g. 5 Rhythms), space boundaries (e.g. Soul Motion), or shamanic elements (e.g. Dancing Freedom), or aim at a feeling of ecstasy (e.g. Ecstatic Dance). Others, in addition to music and movement, use singing and group encounter situations (e.g. Biodanza), or combine freestyle and structured movement (e.g. Journeydance), combine elements of dance with martial arts and mindfulness (e.g. Nia), elements of yoga and dance (e.g. Yoga Dance), or are based on Gestalt Therapy (e.g. Open Floor). They use different and overlapping frameworks and concepts. But whatever the pathway, the aim is to help you connect with your body’s intuitive flow and wisdom, and cultivate home in one's spirt and soul. It’s the dance of the soul.

Some also see it as a new way of meditating or praying in the present tense. As it requires the mover to be fully present in the moment and listen deeply and attune to one’s inner impulses to move, it's an engaging form of meditation. Through freestyle movement often one reaches a meditative, trance like state out of which a sense of freedom, peace, and joy may arise. In fact, this way of meditating or praying isn't new and it's held in many ancient traditions, such as the worship ceremonies of the Sufis.

Read about how this type of dance differs from dance therapy here.

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