Friday, June 13, 2014

Pruning & Weeding & Japanese Ma


2014 seems to be the year for some serious decluttering.

I didn't enter the year with this intention, but it's happening.

To start, I cut back my local teaching drastically. I needed to do this, for sure, but I had resisted for a long time and the act felt fraught with fear for me.

But it's turning out as brilliantly as my partner, Marcy, assured me it would, and things are happening that I would have never guesses.

For one, I'm loving teaching again, and this is really a relief. I find JOY in it again. Teaching less gives me space to love it and my students more.

I am also feeling more creative after only a few days of making space for my own personal practice at the studio. When I take space and time, the ideas just flood in. Every time. I doubt it will happen but it always does.

There are other ways I've cut back so that I can focus on what's most important in my work, but it's also happening elsewhere in my life.

This year, we're focusing on "getting rid of" in our gardens. Tons of weeding and pruning and cutting back and cutting down.

I will attack each of the flower beds mercilessly and focus on the plants that I want to really notice, the plants that are just drowning among the too muchness of the beds as they are right now.

I want there to be SPACE between plants. I want to be able to see the full shape of things.

In Japanese design, there is the principle of Ma, which means that things are interesting because of the space around them, not really because of the things themselves.

They apply this not only to the design of their material world but also to their lives -- making space for meditation and tea ceremonies in between the usual busy of life.

I love this.

I read about it many, many months ago, and now it seems, it's really taking hold in my heart.

This Fall, I'll be going after the inside of the house in the same way.

And I'll always be seeking ways to apply the principle to my own dance.

Where do you need some MA in your life?

Where would space and emptiness enhance beauty and joy?

You can now learn how to teach dance as a spiritual practice! My first teacher training is coming at the end of September! Just visit the "Teacher Training" tab at the top of this page.

If you want to explore more deeply how to create an at-home dance sadhana (spiritual path) practice, you could join my super secret Facebook group, Inferno of Awesome. This group is invisible until you're added. FIRST, make sure you are my friend on FB, and SECOND, ask me to add you.