Sunday, April 15, 2012

Off topic... Dancing...

Last night was another dance night at the LGBT Center. It was the annual "Fur Ball"--which I will explain, and will need to venture slightly into gay culture to do so. Bears are hairy men who tend to be on the large side--but body hair is more important than weight when considering the term "bear". Last night was bear's night, hence "Fur Ball". Cute, huh?

This is a big dance--over 800 people attending--with both the 1st and 3rd floor halls open for dancing, with a DJ on both floors. Most dances are held just in the big hall down stairs. So the Fur Ball is special... and fun, fun, fun!

Just being in the Center is special. It is hard to explain the feeling of walking off the street into this building. One drops one's doubts at the door. Inside, there is no question of acceptance for being simply who we are. It's a wonderful feeling. Even in this day of much greater acceptance, being in the Center temporarily allows self editing to be put on hold. I love the place. Will be back there tomorrow evening for our knitting group.

But the dance. I have mentioned before that I love dancing and I love it best with a partying crowd, celebrating the joy of being ourselves, of simply being! Dance is primitive, going back to the dawn of our existence. It has deep roots, deep and spiritual. But it is also very contemporary, very here, now and real.

Havelock Ellis wrote in his book "The Dance of Life" (1923),
If we are indifferent to the art of dancing, we have failed to understand, not merely the supreme manifestation of physical life, but also the supreme symbol of spiritual life.
I agee with him. He goes on,
The significance of dancing, in the wide sense, thus lies in the fact that it is simply an intimate concrete appeal of a general rhythm, that general rhythm which marks, not life only, but the universe, if one may still be allowed so to name the sum of the cosmic influences that reach us. ... Dancing is the primitive expression alike of religion and of love -- of religion from the earliest human times we know of and of love from a period long antierior to the coming of man.
And further on,
... as an anthropologist has put it, 'a savage does not preach his religion, he dances it.'
I feel the deep spirituality of dancing. The DJs last night were very talented and mixed some really good rhythms for us. A joyous trance of kinship with those around me, of a connection to the earliest of human times, of a reality all around. A celebration. A dance of Life.

Dance! As much as you can.

Havelock Ellis lived 1859 to 1939, was a Britsh physician and psychologist who studied human sexuality. I found his book "The Dance of Life" (1923) at The Strand book store many years ago. It's a very good read.

1 comment:

  1. Bits and bites for thought. :). Thanks, Bernard.


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