Sacred Dance & Sacred Art

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Tau Malachi
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Sacred Dance & Sacred Art

#1 Postby Tau Malachi » Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:39 pm


Sacred Dance & Sacred Art: Embodying the Divine

Music, song and dance are an integral part of Gnostic worship and sacred ceremony in the Sophian tradition, and they are forms of art very common among initiates of the Order of St. Haniel – the musician, singer and dancer are among the sacred artists of this Holy Order.

Riding the flow of music, song and dance are a way of prayer and meditation with the voice and the body, a way that often brings very lofty states of devekut, cleaving to the Divine, and in giving teachings on the creative process and sacred art, its way and purpose, very often the way of sacred dance as taught and practiced in the tradition is used to give insight.

We are all, no doubt, familiar with the delight of dancing in and of itself, letting the body give physical expression to music and song, and to thoughts and emotions, and the translation of this joyful expression into praise and thanksgiving, and worship in the presence of the Holy One. Yet, in sacred dance, in mystical traditions, the play of dancing includes this, but also aims at something more – the aim is one of unification and embodiment of Divine Powers through dance, as though it is no longer we who are dancing, but it is the Divine Presence and Power invoked that is dancing.

We see this in our experience with adepts and masters of the tradition in sacred discourse and sacred ceremony – most especially in ceremony. When they enter into the movement and take up the continuum, they take up various faces or aspects of the Divine Presence and Power, all according to the spiritual work and transmission that is to take place – very literally they can and do embody partzufim, various divine personification, and thus become a channel and manifestation of the corresponding aspect of the Divine Presence and Power.

There is one Light-presence and Light-power, and yet it can assume all manner of different forms, modes and operations, appearing in all manner of different emanations, peaceful, blissful and wrathful – in the play of the Continuum of Light Transmission, the Living Presence and Power shape-shifts, assuming whatever form is necessary in skillful means.

This play that we witness with adepts and masters of the tradition is much the same as the art of sacred dance in mystical and magical forms of spirituality – taking up a dance corresponding with a Divine Power, becoming open and sensitive, and empty of ourselves, at times, through grace, the Divine Power may actually enter us and take up the dance, becoming embodied in the sacred dance. When this happens, the corresponding Divine Presence and Power moves with, in and through the dance and becomes manifest as the dancer, and in much the same way as we see with tzaddikim who take up various aspects of the Divine Presence and Power in the continuum, magical or wonderworking power flows in the sacred dance.

Truly, sacred dance then becomes a play of prophecy and wonderworking through gesture and movement – a very powerful form of mystical prayer and invocation.

In a manner of speaking, in the play of sacred dance, immersing ourselves in the music or song, and the dance, and merging ourselves with the Divine Presence and Power in self-identification with it, we loose ourselves, and in effect it is as though we disappear, and the Divine Presence and Power appears, taking up our person and body, and dancing us. This is not a fall into any unconscious or trance-like state, however, but is an ascent into higher consciousness, fully awake and alert, in union with the aspect of the Divine Presence and Power manifesting in the sacred dance – it is an experience of merging with the Living Presence and Power, and being taken up by it.

This same movement that we experience in sacred dance reflects the creative process in all forms of sacred art – the creative process becomes a channel or vehicle of an aspect of the Divine Presence and Power, and in some way, more or less, the art that is created becomes an expression and manifestation of that Divine Power.

Quite literally, when there is full kavvanah-concentration and devekut-cleaving during the creative process we merge with the Divine Presence and Power moving with, in and through it, and, in effect, we loose ourselves to gain our Self, becoming that aspect of the Divine expressing Itself through sacred art.

When art is created in this way it shines and is very energetic, and it tends to transmit something of the Divine Presence and Power with which it was created – it becomes very magical.

In this way, all forms of sacred art, like sacred dance and sacred ceremony, becomes a vehicle of union with Divine or Enlightened Being – hence the way of sacred art as a vehicle of self-realization, or enlightenment and liberation.

Basically speaking, the creative process itself becomes prayer and meditation, and as in the deepest forms of prayer and meditation, when we are completely immersed in the creative process, the generation of our art, there is an experience of conscious union and the generation of our art flows from that union.

If and when we wish to enter into a creative process of this kind, like a sacred dancer entering into sacred ceremony to pray and invoke, first we will purify ourselves, and pray and meditate, and forming a conscious intention of the creative flow we wish to invoke, we will consecrate ourselves and the movement to the Divine and to the kingdom of heaven – then we will shift into our creative process, allowing it to become our continued prayer and meditation, and worship of the Divine.

*In many art forms, the purification and consecration of ourselves will also include the purification and consecration of everything we will be using in our art – relating with everything we use as sacred objects, akin to a wonderworker and their sacred tools.

As with the sacred dancer, our intention, of course, is to become empty of ourselves so as to be filled with the aspect of the Great and Holy Spirit we are invoking and seeking to manifest in our creative process and art.

There are many different practices that are taught in the Order of St. Haniel for purification and consecration as we enter into the creative process of sacred art, but what is shared above represents the essence of them all put in a most basic and general way, leaving much room for innovation and creativity in how each initiate of the Order might go about entering into their creative process in a sacred manner. In the case of many initiates of the Order this essential instruction is enough and they do not find the need to use the more detailed and formal practices that are given, and very often they have already intuitively been entering into their creative process in this way, so that receiving this instruction merely serves to make them more aware of what they are doing.

May we be a Holy Vessel of Divine Inspiration and be a sign of spiritual hope before the people, revealing something of the great beauty and glory of the Divine to them and serving to uplift them. Amen.

Blessings & shalom!
Tau Malachi
Sophia Fellowship
Ecclesia Pistis Sophia

+rue

#2 Postby +rue » Fri Jul 10, 2009 7:23 pm

aaahh, yes, thank you for this post! it is very affirming to read your words that reflect my experience of the dance which is usually a nonverbal experience so that words can be hard to find to describe it.

the creative flow is a wonderful way to open up to the Divine; very immediate. to surrender to the Dance and sweat, bringing all our cells and our whole being into the experience is quite profound! and i experience it as timeless. humanity has always, dances now and will always dance. i feel we are all connected through the dance. i get a sense of many more dancing with us beyond those bodies dancing in the moment. the dance has carried me through many traumas, even life threatening ones, because i knew, no matter what, i would dance again!

and i've often felt it was no accident that there was song written, the lord of the dance! (it's one of my favorites! lyrics below.)

many swirley, spinning, dancing blessings!
+rue



I danced in the morning when the world was begun,
And I danced in the moon and the stars and the sun,
And I came down from heaven and I danced on the earth,
At Bethlehem I had my birth.

Refrain
Dance, then, wherever you may be;
I am the Lord of the Dance, said he.
And I’ll lead you all wherever you may be,
And I’ll lead you all in the dance, said he.

I danced for the scribe and the Pharisee,
But they would not dance and they would not follow me;
I danced for the fishermen, for James and John;
They came to me and the dance went on.

Refrain

I danced on the sabbath when I cured the lame,
The holy people said it was a shame;
They whipped and they stripped and they hung me high;
And they left me there on a cross to die.

Refrain

I danced on a Friday and the sky turned black;
It’s hard to dance with the devil on your back;
They buried my body and they thought I’d gone,
But I am the dance and I still go on.

Refrain

They cut me down and I leapt up high,
I am the life that’ll never, never die;
I’ll live in you if you’ll live in me;
I am the Lord of the Dance, said he.

Susan

Sacred Dance

#3 Postby Susan » Sun Jul 26, 2009 5:03 am

Greetings!

So good to be reminded of this wonderful song. It has such a strong heart-beat, you can feel the drums calling you to pick them up and start drumming and singing and dancing!

Many thanks from the members of our Australian Circle of the Sacred Dance.

Shalom,
Susan

Melissa
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Sacred Dance

#4 Postby Melissa » Mon Nov 22, 2010 6:40 am

Shalom!
I have read this post quite a few times over the last year contemplating how I would incorporate this strongly within my life. First of all, your explanation of the purpose of dance and the actual spiritual process placed words to how I naturally live. As retired ballet dancer I understand that there was a space in which all movement is sacred and spiritual, a place where my movement honors God. So I guess I am asking for more direction, when is dance used in sacred ceremonies?

Mary T
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#5 Postby Mary T » Wed Nov 24, 2010 9:20 am

A lovely thread on sacred art, particularly dance. In ceremony every movement seems as sacred dance to my way of thinking. Personal ceremonies might consist completely of dance, depending on how Mother moves. In our small circle we dance or move as it feels appropriate in worship. I find dance movements often open us up to movement of the energies around and in us, and can help free up energy blockages, all as Spirit inspires.
May Spirit dance her blessings in and through us for the benefit of all beings!
Shalom
Yeshua said to Mary, "Seek to know nothing, and seek to understand nothing; do not seek to be anybody. In this way you will acquire the perfection of wisdom."

Tau Malachi
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Location: Grass Valley, Ca.

Dancing in the Spirit

#6 Postby Tau Malachi » Thu Nov 25, 2010 9:00 am

Greetings and blessings in the Light of the Messiah!

There is no set rule as to how and when dance is used in sacred ceremony – as an example, it might be at the very outset or opening, generating energy, or it might be in the midst, to move energy or to enact worship, or it might be at the end, celebrating the culmination of the rite, or it could be any combination of the above.

Dance can assume many different forms. In the tradition, though, attending ceremonies in circle we may learn an art of gesture and movement that is quite distinct, which may be joined to other inspirations in ceremonial dance.

The ideal of sacred dance from a Gnostic perspective is that the Light-presence and Light-power, or various Divine Powers, might take us up and dance us, we becoming a movement of the Shekinah of the Messiah in space-time.

Generally speaking, dance is joined to the art of intonement and breath, and so on, becoming an incredible movement of spiritual force.

May we entertain the dance of the Shekinah of the Messiah and so be taken up by her. Amen.

Peace be with you!
Tau Malachi

Sophia Fellowship

Ecclesia Pistis Sophia

Kat
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 4:25 pm
Location: California

The art of Spiritual dance

#7 Postby Kat » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:18 am

Shalom,

In contemplating experience in Sacred dance it is fascinating how walls and bounderies fall away. I have felt the body shift dimensions wich makes the environment shift dimensions, as though one's internal space and external space begin to unite. In comtemplating the form is the Red maiden who dances in the sky I wonder if there is a connection to cutting away bounderies in this form? Also that the Mother is the stillness of the sky and the Daughter is in Motion is also a deep Mystery.

Shalom,
Kat

Tau Malachi
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Dance, Awareness & Energy

#8 Postby Tau Malachi » Thu Nov 29, 2012 12:53 pm

Grace and peace to you in Hayyah Yeshua!

When we open to the Holy Light from above, cultivate joy and uplift our heart, and we rejoice through sacred dance in the Shekinah of Yahweh, the Holy Spirit may come upon us, and the “fire snake” can stir, the serpent power being uplifted as we dance and worship in the Shekinah. When this happens there is a greater generation of our energetic being, or body of light, and we may become aware of our energetic being inseparable from the energetic environment surrounding us; if and when this happens, through movement in dance we may perceive shifts in the energetic environment, there can be energetic transmissions and wonders can transpire.

As we know, sacred dance is a way of worship, and prayer and meditation, cleaving to the Lord, Adonai, or in unification with Holy Partzufim, but it is also an integral part of our wonderworking art, and through gestures and dance, joined with intonations, chants and songs, wonderworking ceremonies are performed and wonders transpire.

If we look into the Red Maiden, she is a personification of the fire snake or serpent power in us. The image of the Red Maiden dancing in our belly is the generation of the inner heat, inner purification, and a great manifesting power. The image of the Red Maiden dancing in our heart is the uplifting of the serpent power to the heart star, and the sending out of this power in love and compassion, the generation of the Sacred Heart. The image of the Red Maiden dancing in her light palace on top of our head, this is the serpent power uplifted to the brow star and crown, and the full generation of the light body. When we enter into union with the Red Maiden, and we dance in the Mother, so this becomes a raying out of blessings from our light body and interior stars, energetic prayers for the happiness of all beings, and an offering of ourselves, all our energy and life, to God the Mother; it is an offering in Great Joy!

It is really a very simple practice, and quite fun, and yet, very powerful, very magical! The experiences that can arise, the movements of light-power or energy that can happen, are absolutely amazing – truly wonderful!

The Daughter corresponds with our energetic being, the Mother corresponds with the energetic being in all – as we dance, these merge and are unified. Likewise, the Mother is awareness, the Daughter is energy – as we dance, these are joined inseparable from one another. When this happens amazing wonders can transpire through a simple wish or intention held in the heart and belly – this we have experienced in our dances.

There is something more that we can share concerning sacred dance. As we dance, the configuration of our light body can shift and change, and as it does, so there can be corresponding shifts or changes in the energetic atmosphere and environment, and so there can be “dimensional shifts” in consciousness. The experience can be quite wild, and very blissful.

In sacred dance, very often, rather than through a focused thought of our own, what transpires is uncontrived, a natural and spontaneous expression of the Fiery Intelligence moving with, in and through us, and manifesting as us in the sacred dance; and yet there are times the sacred dance is the experience of a conscious theurgic intention on our part, the dance being the expression and manifestation of that intention.

We may recall that the origin of dance among human beings was a sacred intention, and worship; profane dance representing a degradation of the original intention. When we take up sacred dance there is often an interesting sense or feeling that the desire for dance, in its origin, comes from heaven or the Spirit of God, as though a stirring of the soul in the body. One wonders about music, song and dance, and what inspires them, for they are so powerful and there is much joy in them; even profane dance with a good heart has much joy and power in it.

Given the range of music, song and dance as it has developed, though, clearly at times the inspiration does not always come from heaven or the Divine, for there are some manifestations that are very dark, chaotic and violent. Even such manifestations of music, song and dance, however, could be taken up in a dance of the wrathful palace with the conscious intention of vanquishing dark and hostile forces, assuming the Wisdom of Ain has been acquired.

Thus, there is a vast range of sacred dance, peaceful, blissful and wrathful, all in the wisdom of skillful means, all as the Holy Shekinah and Holy Spirit inspires.

May the Holy Mother and Holy Bride bless you this day dear sister!
Tau Malachi

Sophia Fellowship

Ecclesia Pistis Sophia

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#9 Postby cynthia k » Tue Dec 11, 2012 4:47 pm

inspiring, thank you tau.......in peace, cynthia


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