Every Monday we get together and we dance (see video). I delight in playing the role of alchemist as I spin tunes from my computer. When the play list works, the result is magical. The energy rises and falls in seamless waves. We move with a freedom that brings us deep into our bodies and out of ourselves. The best is when the collective energy lifts us out of our ordinary lives, and, for a few precious moments, everything is perfect and everything is whole. The effect is nothing less than transformational.
Over the years, I spent many hours dancing. Sometimes I’d dance with my children or at a party or a club, but most often I’d be alone. Dancing was a private affair that felt great, gave me some exercise, but was lacking what I really wanted.
I wanted synergy. I wanted community. I wanted a chance to play with other people and for other people to play with me. I longed for the rush of endorphins and the disequilibrium of spinning with a whole room full of dancers pushing their own limits. Now, at last, I’m dancing with other people like I once dreamed.
All too often, we engage in exercise only in order to have something else for some future self. We exercise because we’re dissatisfied with the way we look, or we want to lose weight, or build muscle, or be healthy by next summer. We suffer now so that we can enjoy our bodies somehow, somewhere, someday. Unless you are a child, it’s rare to participate in exercise simply for the joy of it. But that’s what we do when we dance. We dance to be present. We dance because it feels good. We dance to celebrate the miraculous accident of our biology. When we dance, we have no goal other than to dance. We dance for now.