Throughout history, dance has been a spiritual, emotional and community building activity! It was an expression of personality and culture—an experience of freedom and creativity.
We’ve all jumped and jived on the dancefloor or swayed in the crowd to our favorite bands. Some may have even elegantly trotted across the ballroom, enjoy the waltz or the foxtrot. Yet, these forms of dance failed to evoke the deeper experiences of the free flow meditative trans-like dances of ancient times. That was until Ecstatic dance began its resurgence!
Being reborn in the early 2000s, Ecstatic dance has become wildly popular in the Conscious Community – people who would practice yoga, meditation and other forms of conscious development. Previously, similar spiritual forms of dance focused on the acoustic: the mellow and quiet. In contrast, Ecstatic dance bursts with energy, drawing heavily on various styles of music and rhythms! And it’s exactly what people love about it! While there are plenty of spiritual practices that promote stillness and static postures, Ecstatic dance reemerged with an excellent way to move the energy in the body and have a release in a very robust way!
To understand the roots of Ecstatic dance, we must venture back in time. The ancient Greeks – followers of the god of wine Dionysus were the first to enjoy Ecstatic dancing. In it they saw a spiritual component, a way to worship Divine and wild trans-like states in which they could escape their bodies. In time, these dances became ritualistic. Variations of this form of dancing were common throughout the world. Rhythmic drumming and shamanic rituals used Ecstatic dance to connect with Great Spirit through the body and have served as a form of meditation. Through these intense dances, groups also were forming tight, emotional bonds with one another, which was benefiting communities.
Reemerging of Ecstatic dance
Once, on the beaches of Hawaii, in the shadow of a volcano, Ecstatic dance returned. The beating sun and burning earth were infused into the movements and philosophy of the dance. Max Fathom, who had been part of the Conscious Dance community, stopped by Burning Man, on his way to Hawaii. Hearing the rhythm of the new styles of Electronic Music, he dreamt of combining the two.
DJs and their electronic tapestry of sounds came in. Sonic flares sound through the room. Genres meld and blur. No set is ever the same.
No drugs or alcohol are used. These are not drug-fueled raves. No shoes are worn; no words are said. Modern dancers follow the footsteps of their ancestors and express themselves with their bodies and spirit! There is no right or wrong way. Use your movements to unwind, express and to reach an ecstatic meditative state! Participants feel the connection with their fellow dancers and the world!
Over the course of the Ecstatic dance journey, the music goes in waves. Starting slow, it builds up towards an ecstatic high—going through various rhythms, yet slowing down again and giving a way for a more hearted, touchy vibes. As the music flows, so your body does too; until the community ends the dance together!
In the modern, faced-paced, and stressful world, Ecstatic dance had spread across the globe. Following the first Ecstatic dances in Oakland, Berlin, Amsterdam, New York, and Barcelona, the dances have found their way into India and South East Asia. Everyone can benefit from Freedom of expression. You just have to let yourself go!
In Umaya center Ecstatic dance is one of the popular activities that bring a lot of fun and joy to all involved! We are offering course for the Ecstatic dance dj training for all interested to spread this movement across the planet!