Way Down Deep

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My latest accomplishment has been to receive my certification as a Chakradance™ Facilitator.  I cannot express fully enough in words how grateful I am to have had this movement practice for the soul come into my life.  It was quite synchronistic that I found it actually.  I had noticed it several times on my Facebook newsfeed.  I’ve been facilitating meditation classes for quite some time and on most occasions go through the chakras.  When I taught Yoga back along the way, chakras were very much a part of my teaching.  I’ve been teaching Nia for 15 years and movement of the 3 body weights in Nia (the pelvis, chest and head) activate and open the 7 chakras.

I’ve been wanting to expand the offerings at Sacred Space Studio so when I logged on to my email one morning back in April, there was a message from “Jenny” of Chakradance™ letting me know that this day was the last day to register for the Facilitator training at a reduced cost.  All sorts of thoughts when through my head about not having the time or not being sure if this was exactly what I was looking for, yadda yadda yadda.  You know the drill.  But my intuition was much more open and willing than my mind, so I went for it.  And W.O.W. am I ever delighted that I followed my intuition.

The feedback I’ve received from the several one hour and 15 minutes classes I’ve taught has been encouraging and enlightening.  I finished my first of seven Workshops this past Sunday — starting with the Base Chakra — and the feedback from this workshop confirmed even further that I had made the right choice.

Spontaneous dance, specific music, creative visualizations and imagery, along with the wonderful Mandala-creating exercise contained in the classes and the workshops invites the participants to go way down deep.  It’s transformational.  It’s healing.  It’s truly a movement practice for the soul.

It is my pleasure to be offering Nia classes, Reiki classes and therapy sessions, Chakradance™ classes and workshops, Tarot readings and meditation classes at Sacred Space Studio.  If you find yourself compelled toward any of these offerings, please feel free to contact me.  You can find my contact information on the “About” page.

Nia and Tarot

It is what it isSo you might ask what Tarot and Nia have to do with one another.  They are more similar than different actually.  They both move me deeply.  I am guided by spirit when reading Tarot or when dancing Nia. Both require listening to my intuition and sensing in all the realms — physical, emotional, mental and spirit.

My plan is to begin using one Tarot card to guide me in setting the focus and the intent  for each day and if there is a Nia class that day, that same focus will apply to the class.

I’m really excited about how this journey will unfold.  It is What It Is and I’m Going with the Flow.

 

Smaller Movements

I seem to waffle between posting on my blog a lot or posting very seldom. Anyone else have that issue? I have the intention to blog every day, I just don’t do it. I’m going to reinstate the intention here that I would like to blog more often.

About a week ago, I started writing “morning thoughts” (yes, writing…as in longhand, cursive). Except for the weekend (do weekends count?), I have been true to writing down my thoughts without caring about proper punctuation or spelling — just stream of consciousness writing which pretty much amounts to getting all the buzzkill crap out of my head and onto paper.

A friend of mine posted on Facebook this morning about not always having to “push through” (relating to the fitness myth of having to push through pain or resistance in order to achieve greatness) but instead to use smaller movements, to even rest while moving.

Those words struck me deeply. As a Nia practitioner, my goal in every class is to bring a variety of movements and energies — but mostly I love the big movements — whether Tae Kwon Do kicks and punches or (Isadora) Duncan’s playful, freestyle of dance movements.

I’ve noticed that my physical stamina is not what it used to be. At the age of 30, I was doing amateur weightlifting (ala Arnold) and going to the health club EVERY day using all the machines and taking aerobics classes. My body was buff. At the age of 40, I gave the health club, machines and aerobics classes up and began to search for other types of dance exercise. I found Gabrielle Roth’s 5 Rhythms and Rudolf Steiner’s Eurythmy, which ultimately led me to Nia.

At the age of 63 (closing in on 64 — will you still need me?), I am committing to making smaller movements, slowing down, quieting down. That does not mean my Nia classes won’t be kick ass spectacular, they will be. But there will be a difference and it will be magical.

Dance, Move, Express, Spirit, Create, Change

Someone asked me a few months ago if there were 6 words I would use for my memoir (ala “The Six Word Memoir Project”). At the time I struggled with coming up with 6 words to leave as a memoir.

However, a shift occurred recently (coinciding with the New Year) allowing for six words to emerge as my mantra for 2014…actually it’s a mantra for my life. Those six words are:  DANCE, MOVE, EXPRESS, SPIRIT, CREATE, CHANGE. As a memoir it would look more like: “Dance, Move, Express Spirit, Create Change”. These six words represent the truth of who I am…and they speak volumes about how I live my life. They have become my way of life…my path…my journey. I shared (and continue to share) these words with my students in my Nia classes since the beginning of the year. They could feel my passion…

I have a Nia practice…which makes me a Nia practitioner. Practitioners offer to and share their experiences with others…experiences of healing, growth, relaxation, consciousness and so much more. I offer and share with my students my experiences of dancing, moving, expressing spirit and creating change. My birthday was last weekend. At a lovely birthday dinner, I was honored to receive so many wonderful gifts from my friends (many of whom are also my students).  One gift, a framed painting with the words “DANCE, MOVE, EXPRESS, SPIRIT, CREATE, CHANGE in gold lettering nestled amidst splashes of turquoise and purple (my favorite colors); and another, a beautiful card with DANCE, MOVE, EXPRESS, SPIRIT, CREATE, CHANGE in hand calligraphy. Both of these gifts are now hanging in my studio.

This is the life of a practitioner. I am so enjoying this journey. 

Entering the Gateway to 2014

abundance

 

If you follow my blog, you know that I teach Nia — it is my sacred livelihood. My Nia classes are full of creative expression, an invitation to live and dance the truth of who you are — spirit in action, clothed in an extraordinary physical manifestation.

I love ceremony, I love creating a space where others are invited to step into their greatness, their divinity. Everything in this world needs to be lifted up.  The Universe awaits the opportunity to manifest that which we wish to dream into reality…and it will…it does…now and always — the Universe responds to our call. Every thought, every word, every action creates our world. What is it that YOU wish to dream into reality? Be cautious and CONSCIOUS of your wishes. They do manifest. There is no one to thank or to blame but yourself for what is revealed.  Wouldn’t you rather be grateful for what comes forth rather than accusing, blaming or criticizing? Afterall, it’s your creation.

On the Winter Solstice, Dec. 21, 2013, a gathering of 13 (one of my favorite numbers) celebrated with a ritual of gratitude and forgiveness for our journey through 2013.  Although Midnight on December 31st in the Gregorian Calendar is normally celebrated as the ringing in of the New Year, in some cultures the Winter Solstice brings forth the new journey.  I recognize both as holy and sacred.

We began our time together in an empowering circle…the room was dimly lit.  There were blank pieces of paper and a crayon, a stone and an “Angel” card for everyone.  The invitation was to enter the space intuitively, sitting where one was drawn to do so.  The first offering to the Universe was to jot down three things we were grateful for in 2013, there was no time to think about it, let spirit guide. The second offering was to jot down one thing in 013 for which we wanted to receive forgiveness. Gratitude and Forgiveness are BIG MEDICINE. Each stone had a word carved on it. The specific word represented our something for which we were grateful and the word on the Angel Card contained our individual “energy” for the dance we would be participating in shortly.

And we danced…beautiful dancing bodies (12 women and 1 man).  The playlist contained the “mantra of joy”, a beautiful song about dreaming, a melodic song of winter, a song of “together as one” and then we gathered back in our circle to dream in 2014.  No time to think about it…let the crayon hit the paper and stream of consciousness take over. Fill the paper if necessary, or just write a few things.

Our time ended with hands in prayer position at the heart and the words, “Let Love Radiate” (words that I use to bring all of my Nia classes to a close).

The Universe is waiting to respond…that’s what it does…respond.

I sense a unique shift occurring…it is time to put the cards on the table. What’s in your hand? What are you dreaming into 2014?

Movement as Prayer

The body says...

I’m currently reading a book entitled, “Help, Thanks, Wow: Three Essential Prayers” by Anne Lamott.   Ms Lamott, for this book alone, has risen to the top of my favorite authors list.  

Three prayers:  Help, Thanks, Wow.   Lamott describes in real life situations how a simple prayer of “Help” or “Thanks” or “Wow” to the Universe brings about change.  Ahhhh…change.  No wonder so many prayers fall short of their mark…not many folks are willing to change or make changes.   When I was little I thought if I prayed everything would be alright.  But things weren’t alright, not always.  Perhaps it was my bartering that made my prayers a little less substantial.  “If you will only do this one thing for me, God, I promise I’ll never….(fill in the blank).”  Tsk. Tsk. It was my end of the bargain that always fell short.  The Universe more often than not answered my prayer.  What was I doing wrong?  Could it be that I wasn’t taking responsibility…that I was assuming that all I needed to do was ask the Powers That Be to do something and I didn’t have to do anything in return?  Well, gee.  I was young.  Come on.  Give a girl a break.  HA.  How about 10,000 breaks?  

I’ve grown up to some degree since those days of  bartering…of long lengthy prayers about what I would do “if only”.  These days there’s no bartering.  I just need to move my body. My movement becomes my prayer.  Simple.  When I find that I’m desiring something…I move my body.  Help — in the freedom and form of Nia.  When I want to express gratitude …I move my body.  Thanks — in the freedom and form of Nia.  For those awe-inspiring magical moments (which happen more often than not)…I move my body.  Wow — in the freedom and form of Nia.

“The body says what words cannot”.  — Martha Graham

No words are necessary.  Just the passion, the love for moving and dancing and wiggling and shaking, for making shapes and the love  for expressing the unique spirit that inhabits and animates this human form; the love for using my mind to imagine and visualize, the love for using my emotions to feel.  Movement as prayer.

Help.  Thanks.  Wow.  Thank you Anne Lamott for simplifying prayer.  Thank you Debbie Rosas Stewart and Carlos AyaRosas for allowing Nia to come through your bodies, minds, hearts and spirits into the world so that Life could set me on a path of discovering the Joy of Movement and that Movement As Prayer…IS ceaseless prayer.  Now I Am ….  Sacred.

 

 

 

 

 

Get in Your Body!

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The Nia invitation….Get In Your Body!!!

In the little town of Hubertus, Wisconsin, there are 5 opportunities to Get In Your Body!!  Five (yes, count ’em 5 – F.I.V.E.) Nia classes at Sacred Space Studio (located within The Nutman Co., Really Cool Gift Shop and Java Dancer Coffee Bar):  Mondays at 9 a.m., Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m., Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m., Thursdays at 9:00 a.m., Saturdays at 9:00 a.m.

Sensations (body)…imagery (mind)…feelings and emotions (heart)…your own unique expression through movement (spirit).  There is no other lifestyle/cardio practice around like Nia (www.nianow.com).  Yes, I said LIFESTYLE practice.  The 13 principles of Nia (each of the 4 Belts (White, Blue, Brown, Black) has 13 principles.  These principles can be EASILY applied to one’s everyday life.  I’ve been living the Nia principles now for 12 years; perhaps 14 if I count the 2 years prior to my becoming a Nia teacher (or practitioner as I like to call myself).

Joy of Movement
Natural Time and Movement Forms
Music and 8BC System
FreeDance
Awareness
Base
Three Planes of Movement and Intensity Levels
Core
Upper Extremeties 
X-Ray Anatomy
Creating a Sacred Livelihood
Continuing Education
Sharing What You Sense

Whether a Nia student or a Nia Practitioner (any Belt), how do YOU embody these 13 basic principles in your daily living?  

If you’ve never experienced Nia, come and dance at Sacred Space Studio in Hubertus, Wisconsin.  Your journey to loving your body and loving your life starts here…