Love the idea of dance as a prayer — I am suddenly filled with religious fervor. Thank you for helping me to find god. – Mosa
Mosa’s comment on my post about dancing a prayer for Etta James reminded me of the first time I felt my S Factor pole dancing class was spiritual. Where I connected to the power of the divine feminine.
Childhood prayers no longer soothed
I’d been taking S classes for about a year. Work was overwhelming. I was barely a step ahead of my students. I felt frustrated with the lack of formal spirituality in my life. I’d spoken with some friends about how I needed more spiritual connection, especially when I felt anxious. Maybe you know the kind I mean? That free flowing anxiety that comes with the rising tide of too much to do and not enough time to do it in until it nearly drowns you in a sea of panic.
When nothing else calmed me, I used to turn to prayer, to God. I asked for help or recited an Our Father along with some deep breathing and the panic would recede, usually enough to focus on one of the many tasks. Despite growing up Catholic, in my thirties I disconnected from that organized religion so my old prayers stopped working. Yet I hadn’t fully grown into my new beliefs in God/Goddess, Energy, and Nature.
Already exhausted a couple weeks into the quarter, one Friday afternoon after teaching three nights in row I tried to prepare lecture/discussion notes for the following week. A playlist comprised of female vocalists played in the background. It had become my method of choice to let my body pick music for dance class. A song (Rihannon by Fleetwood Mac) grabbed my attention and pulled me out of my chair into a slow, luscious hip circle–oh, how, I loved those. As a swirled my hips, I felt warmth and energy fill my body—like a flash of heat lightning burst from within. It was so visceral and strong that I expected yellow sparks to radiate from my fingertips. I put academic work aside in favor of a dance workout.
Eventually, it dawned on me: My classmates were my tribe. There is a spiritual element in S Factor for me. Best described as a primal connection to my inner goddess, all the goddesses in the room and to Goddess, Herself.
Now, one of the ways I connect to the divine feminine and my spiritual community is to cue up an estrogen packed female vocalist play list and dance. Tribal beats send it over the top. I hip circle, spine circle or pole spin my way to relief. Sometimes, just listening to a particularly powerful song can do the trick. My weekly class is my ‘church,’ my sacred space where I dance my prayers and am witnessed by a supportive circle of women.
What about you? How do you experience divine in dance? As prayer? As spiritual?