The year has whisked by; a zephyr blowing my experiences from me and leaving me wondering about the present. How to learn in such times of quickening? The idea of “keeping up” or “keeping pace” with a culture, a world that is on fire with its own creation and busy-ness seems futile. All that feels possible is to stay present with what is and not create more to do than what feels possible. The paradox of existence more alive than ever for me now, I look back to the beginning of September when I committed to creating a dance video every day for 40 days. For the time in my life that it was, my dance journal project was exactly what was needed. It pushed me to create when I was feeling hopeless; to get off my ass and do something inspired with my gifts, even if it wasn’t polished, practiced or even good. About one quarter of the way through, life took hold again. Doing each video, I felt compelled out into the world in a way I hadn’t felt in quite a while. I had a mission; a project to make good on. And the creation of each one felt amazing. They also felt time consuming to do the way I felt REALLY good doing them.
Ideas for videos were coming to me left and right. Concepts and inspirations continually flowed through me. Yet it seemed counter to my integrity as an artist to use certain music and not put the due diligence to really create something beautiful and worthy of the talent and ability I know resides within me and is expressed by the musicians I felt moved to work to. The dance journal entries that I found really satisfying were the ones based on great music that I had a connection with, spanned a good few hours of filming, and another of equal or greater length of editing. They told a story; more than just getting in front of the camera and giving it all I had physically for four minutes. As life stuck its hooks back into me towards the beginning of fall and pulled me into the activity of supporting myself, finding a home, traveling for work, the option of just cranking out a video of me dancing because I said I would seemed less and less authentic. My desire for a deeper commitment to creating work of quality – that really exemplified my way of creating and expressing and what was important to me to stand for – forced me to re-examine the dance journals. I didn’t want them to be just another bunch of random dance videos. I wanted substance and I wanted artistry. I wanted film making.
The daily dance journal did its work. Even if the project was never completed, it succeeded in its mission: to stimulate my creativity and help refine the kind and quality of work I wish to produce. Creating content is important, but creating work that feels in integrity with who I am – that propels the vision of one’s self not only as an artist, but as an individual – forward into the realms of genius implicit in us all, that is the dream. That is the real project; the opus worthy of engagement. And how to use my gifts not only to further my own dreams, but those of others as well, such as Mr. Oliver Franklin below. The art of Inquiry into the imaginal realm of who we are leads to fantastical places holding the magic of our true and higher potential. Stepping into the gift of my Far-sightedness, and learning what my genius is NOT, is bringing me one step closer to the evolution of what my genius IS. Journeying out of the abstractions of thought, reifying these dreams, continuing to defy definition in the same breath and owning this life as a constant work in progress, not a problem to be solved.
On my birthday, Sept. 30th, my dear friend and mentor, Binah Zing passed from this world suddenly. It is one of the events that precipitated my divergence from the completion of the dance journal project. I didn’t find out until the night before the dance in this post’s 1st video happened. Antje and I were scheduled to teach all weekend at Seattle Fusion Festival; I was scheduled to perform with my old dance partner Kelly the next night (2nd video). We thought for a moment, “how can we do this now?” As the grief set in, as we taught on Friday, the event of Binah’s leaving and the event of her life revealed the answer. “How could we NOT?” Her whole mission was to live “life as art.” We knew that to deny our own creative spirit would be to dishonor her. There is nothing in the world that warrants denying your true, creative passion if it means enriching the world with joy and beauty and inspiring happiness in others. We are here for a reason. It is up to each of to dive deep into ourselves and uncover what that is. Binah showed me that. Together with her partner, Elijah, she showed me the door to one of the most important tools I’ve ever discovered: The Gene Keys. I’ve never been one for believing in systems, but in my work with the Gene Keys, around every corner, through every passage I’ve read, I’ve found myself more and more. And it works in harmony with everything! Our dance, our love, our communication, our business, everything. So thank you Binah, thank you community, for supporting this amazing journey into our collective and individual genius.
There are brilliant things on the horizon. We live in wildly uncertain times. There is only now and yet there will always be another, different now for those who come after. Wouldn’t we love to give now to our children, and their children? Should not our dreams include their happiness? We can take care of this planet, and continue telling this tall-tale of divine suffering and abysmal beauty until there is full release into the sublime is-ness of it all, or we can collapse into the indifference of living only for ourselves and the satisfaction of our senses in this now. There is a balance yearning to be struck. A way of creating that serves all life beyond our wildest dreams. THAT is the dance I long to meet you in. That is the creation I am excited to weave.