Becoming a Sacred Dancer
Article ID: 15996
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 1,014
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Author: Lady Haight-Ashton (Lady Lilith) [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: January 10th. 2017
Times Viewed: 5,741
What is the allure for a dancer to embrace the sacred within? Is it just simply a moment in time or an experience that influences our destiny? Do the Muses push us toward our path? I believe we are all dancers in our hearts. Our bodies feel rhythms to which most of us will move our heads, others tap their feet while some of us release our inhibitions and let our bodies move in rhythmic expression. Dance movement gives us a creative connection to our inner spirit. It is liberating to our souls and healing to our mind and body.
“The dancer's body is simply the luminous manifestation of the soul.” - Isadora Duncan.
The beginnings of civilization and the evolution of communication into ritual to honor the seasons, animals, and elements brought us the earliest expression of sacred movement. Thus such animated movement and spontaneous dance became a necessary element in ancient rituals that honored the highest entities, Goddess and God.
Our ancestors knew how to communicate their joys, sorrows and spiritual desires through movement. Their bodies became the best instrument with which to express their desires, needs, and prayers. Movement evolved into a language of dance for communication with the forces of nature, joining the ancients to the mysterious and awesome powers of Deity. As ritual, stylized dance became part of every religious and social occasion such as birth, death, marriage, war, victory, harvest and hunting.
Not only was dance an integral part of celebration, but it also developed into one of the primary Magickal tools for healing, exorcism, obtaining fertility, protection, forgiveness, etc. In time dance came to be the province of religious specialists – Priestess, Priest and Shaman alike.
One after the other ancient Priestesses danced in ritual processions moving to freely choreographed aerobic phrases while banging tambourines, cills, rattles, flutes and sistrums.
The dancers’ ritual energy conjured up an atmosphere of joyous festivity and sacred Magick.
Sacred, mystical or magickal dancing are the embodiment of a powerful and focused inner spiritual motivation. To many dancers such movement transports them into an inspirational meditation of motion. Sacred Dance is this integration of the spirit to the mind, which expresses the meditative voice within and truly allows the dancer to embrace the Divine.
Sacred Dance becomes ritual whenever and wherever it is performed and experienced. Our ancient roots lay in the celebration of life’s splendid harmony, the panorama of the seasons, the mysteries of the moon cycles, the sadness of death and the eternal joy of rebirth. Sacred Dance can become the true expression of your physical self and your soul’s inner motivation and essence.
At every Full Moon, as they have for thousands of years, Goddess cultures still gather to celebrate the passage of another Moon cycle with processions and spiraling dances that move to the rhythms of the Earth and Heavens.
Sacred Dancers in the moonlight spontaneously beat out the rhythm of Nature's pulse with their feet as their bodies weave the swirling patterns of the spiral procession. Sacred Dancers snake within and without to create their own hypnotic sacrament. Those of us who hold onto the ancient threads that bind us to the past still rejoice in the lively dances that honor the Moon Goddess. Let the strength of these primordial movements flourish in each of us as we carry on the tradition of dancing under the Full Moon.
As a long time member of the Sacred Dance Guild I ascribe so perfectly to their mission which: “promotes sacred dance as prayer, and as a means of spiritual growth, connection to the Divine, and integration of mind, body, and spirit.” Wherever I go I share the joys and ecstasy of Sacred Dance.
The late Lady Olivia Robertson co-founder of the Fellowship of Isis and I danced together. There was a time when I had danced and shared with her my choreography for “Healing Dance” which is based on medieval circle dances. There is a center focus usually of flowers upon an altar or simply a cauldron that honors the Goddess. The dancers form a circle and dance various steps into the center as an offering. Back and forth we skip and then turn and circle ‘round while raising our positive creative energy for the good of all.
Laurie Cabot of the Cabot Kent Hermetic Temple and the Official Witch of Salem is also a Sacred Dancer. Together, in years past, we swept with the sacred besom and twirled around the ritual circle to create consecrated space. And once my fellow dancers and I enchanted ritual participants at a Sabbat where Laurie was priestess, when we appeared as dancing Faeries running between the trees to encircle the springtime meadow ritual.
On Samhain night we Witches, Pagans and Goddess worshippers’ alike dance around the cauldron’s blazing fires with our energetic dancing culminating in a crescendo of ancient Magick as we raise the immense cone of power we created.
On Beltaine, we twirl and intertwine our dancing ribbons around the Maypole in abandoned merriment weaving fertile wishes everywhere.
At a recent Beltaine Ritual at Universal Pathways I shared my choreography and dancing with other Pagans. With the rhythmic Lyre as accompaniment we dancers wove a colorful spell of be-ribboned gaiety around their proud Maypole.
Sacred Dance manifests into communion with the Goddess (or God) and can take on a multitude of formats running the gamut from the deeply spiritual to the lyrical. It can happen with formal preparation and planned choreography or simply spontaneously or a combination of both.
It is purpose, focus and a sincere desire to establish a spiritual connection with the sacred that allows the creative process of dance to extend beyond the boundaries of the norm. Let your imaginative spirit inspire and guide you on new and different sacred dancing journeys.
I celebrate dance as sacred art. As a Sacred Dancer I acknowledge the blessedness of spirit within movement, which brings me, closer to the Divine. We all become one with the Goddess when we dance with Divinity to honor the beauty of the sacrosanct. I’m best described as having a Witch’s spirit and a Sacred Dancer’s soul and I dance with the Divine Feminine, for the Goddess enfolds me in Her arms.
Let us be inspired to join hands at all of our ritual gatherings and allow the mystical movements of Sacred Dance to bring us closer to the Goddess and Her cosmic world. The ancient traditions are still reborn every year.
"Wherever a dancer stands ready, that spot is holy ground." - Martha Graham.
Walter Terry (1963) , Isadora Duncan, Her Life, Her Art, Her Legacy, New York: Dodd, Mead and Company
Walter Sorell (1967) The Dance Through the Ages, Grosset and Dunlop, Inc.
Lady Haight-Ashton (Lady Lilith)
Location: Lebanon, Maine
Author's Profile: To learn more about Lady Haight-Ashton (Lady Lilith) - Click HERE
Bio: Lady Lilith (Lady Haight-Ashton) is an ordained Priestess of Selket, Lilith and Hecate and an Adept in Sacred Healing Dance within the Fellowship of Isis and the founder of the Iseum of the Graceful Goddess. Lady is also a 3rd Degree Gardnerian High Priestess and Cabot Kent Hermetic Temple Priestess and the High Priestess of Sacred Moon Coven. She is the founder, choreographer and principal dancer of the Undines Dance Company and choreographer and principle dancer with The Temple of Nine Wells Dancers. In addition to dancing and teaching she has written and published numerous articles about the Goddess, Witchcraft and Dance. She is the author of two published books under the pseudonym Lady Lilith: “If Mermaids Could Dance” and “A Witch’s Diary” and is now at work on her third book. Lady has taught “Dancing with the Goddess and Singing with the Muses” at the Annual Fellowship of Isis Eleusinian Goddess Festival in Chicago in 2011 and 2012. In addition Lady is a well-known and popular psychic and medium on the Psychic Power Network under the name Isis Rose.
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