Here's how in 6 easy steps (adapted from the Subbody Butoh method):
1. Imagine that you are a single-celled organism in a primordial soup, hardly able to move, subject to the will of the world around you: the gentle sway of the current, the soft, but relentless pull of gravity, the press of atmospheric pressure. You cannot move of your own accord.
2. Ask your body: "Who are you today?" Perhaps it is a prisoner, bound and shackled. Perhaps it is a balloon, buffeted by the wind. Perhaps it is a body without a soul, devoid of life and will.
3. Ask your body: "What do you feel today?" Like the single-celled organism, you probably feel the pull of gravity, the press of atmospheric pressure around you. However, your body's response might be slightly more sophisticated than that of the single-celled creature. You can also probably feel the temperature of the space around you.
4. Ask your body: "What do you feel inside?" Listen carefully. The answer probably cannot be expressed in words. It is still valuable to hear.
5. Narrow your focus to the most subtle bodily sensations. The firing of synapses, the movement of interlocking proteins, the release of neurotransmitters.
If you have followed these instructions, you have just danced. If you're lucky, you have just danced with more sensitivity and more honesty than some professional ballerinas. You wonder, "Was my dance visible to others?" (You may actually be surprised.) It doesn't matter though. Ultimately, this dance was for you. This dance is a point of entry, the beginning of a deeper and more mysterious journey. This dance is the beginning of butoh.
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When you think about your life in terms of a dance, you can begin to become intentional about the way you lead it and the effect it has on others. I encourage you to take a moment and try the exercise described above, then tell me in the comments below what comparisons you see between this work and the way you lead your life.
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