Dance as a Religion
I find that the dance subculture has been setup to imbue society with with dance in an authoritarian way not unlike how religion has been set up to imbue society with spirituality. Like any other religious institution, it has its leaders and followers, its deities and devils, its virtues and sins, its nuns and monks, its churches and holy sites, its inquisitors and missionaries, its prophets and heretics. It paves its road to salvation with a structure of rules, regulations and expectation. The mere existence of the organization subconsciously creates an ‘us vs them’ mentality which ultimately runs contrary to the implicit goal of normalization.
Dance, much like spirituality belongs to the people, not institutions. The road to salvation comes from a personal journey. It is a deep reflection coming from within and is ultimately expressed through living life authentically. As such I wish to teach people not only the “what” but the “how” and “why”. I wish to give people the tools to learn and experience the fruits of their own self discovery. For when they find their own truth, they are able make it a part of themselves— to embody it through and through. This necessarily means saying “no” to a one size fits all structure and encouraging students to embrace their personal self as the truth detector. To listen to what their heart resonates with the most.
I acknowledge there is inherent truth which is in the root of what the subculture brings forth that should not be thrown out. My complaint is that when followers mistake their accoutrements as the primary teachings, they become hard, inflexible, and miss the point entirely. The rote steps of salvation is confused with what is salvation. The choreography of dance is confused with dancing itself. People are worshiping the god of Swing, god of Salsa, god Tango, when the only true god is the god of dance who encompasses all, who lives in us all. Ultimately, to truly dance is to worship yourself. It is to free yourself, to throw your soul into the wind, to be amongst all the powerful forces, all the powerful gods and proclaim your existence as one of the them. The gods.