Reiki and Dance

by Joan (Gianna) Settin, Ph.D.

Reiki and DanceDance is the essence of the human soul. Since time began on this earth, in water, in caves, in temples, on mountaintops, in the fields, around the stones, and in private spaces within our dwellings, we dance to express ourselves. All beings dance. From the protozoan to the human, we weave a unique dance that is remembered and replicated by our kind, genetically intricately bound to our cells for self-expression, creation, and regeneration. Human dance is our unique form of movement that takes place to rhythm and music, sometimes heard exclusively from within, or choreographed by ritual or design, or ecstatic, or just fun, but always invested with symbolic meaning. Prayers are carried through dances…

During feudal, medieval and Renaissance times, stylized dance movements were performed in the court. These movements formed the basis for ballet, square and ballroom dancing, and many of our contemporary forms of dance expression such as jazz, disco, rock, rap, techno, salsa, and Argentine tango. These dance forms are grown from a complex blend of African, South American, island, and Latin culture. But even what seems now to be purely recreational dance is still rooted in the phenomenon of group affiliation, expression and release of emotion, and renewal…

Or dance can be ecstatic secular healing experience, whether moving easily and gently or powerfully and forcefully to sound. Ecstatic dance pioneer Gabrielle Roth, choreographer of The Wave speaks about the process of merging dance and Spirit: "Sweat burns karma, purifying body and soul. Sweat is an ancient and universal form of self-healing whether done in the gym, sauna, or the sweat lodge. I do it on the dance floor. More you dance, the more you sweat. The more you sweat, the more you pray. The more you pray, the closer you come to ecstasy." Whether performed in an ancient religious context or by individuals called by their own Spirit to move, the dance powerfully evokes our deepest roots.

Think for a moment what we say when we describe Reiki and how it is a dance of energy. It flows through our body in rhythmic pulsing waves, bringing energizing vibration and removing unhealthy energy as it clears a channel for the natural flow of life force. It allows us to harmonize imbalance and move freely. What is energy if not countless millions of particulates of matter colliding with each other, creating new patterns? The dance of the atoms in the nuclear accelerator forming new molecules, the dance of particles of light seen in a sun-filled room, the dance of blood cells rushing through our veins. This is the shimmering dance of ki (chi, prana), the life force that drives all energy in, around and through our system. All is a miraculous dance of energy.

When we dance, the ki flowing through our entire multilayered being, not just the physical body, brings forth the full energy of our life source, activating our physical/emotional/spiritual state on all levels. The auric and etheric layers (emotional, mental, spiritual) are enlivened and complex changes in functioning occur as we move through stages of feeling paired with physiological arousal. At the same time, a relaxation response is initiated that sends a message to our system to let go of stress. Moreover, it triggers our immune system into an organic healing response. We feel less pain (someone steps on our foot, and we do not feel it). We have more energy. (We can dance all night). We are unaware of the passage of time, and we feel better emotionally and refreshed and alert physically…

For example, a 43-year-old professional woman, who was very committed to her home, four children, friends, and career, was conflicted over the desire her husband had to move back to his country of origin. Immediately after a Reiki Dance chakra-clearing session as described under the first dance below, she was approached by someone interested in buying her house, and she was surprised that she acted on it immediately, even though she had no intention to move. She relocated soon thereafter with ease.

Another person, a Reiki practitioner and sports enthusiast, hoped to overcome his chronic shoulder pain. He was grieving several losses in love relationships. Meditating, carefully working out at the gym with a trainer, doing Reiki self-treatments, and receiving treatments created a healthier and happier life, but he still had the pain, although not as severely. He did just a short Reiki dance meditation on the heart charka-a feeling of burden lifted from around the back of his heart area, and with it his shoulder pain. The process he used is described in the second dance below.

This is just part of the article which appeared in the Summer 2004 issue of Reiki News Magazine.