By Viola Woolcott
We find evidence of dance from the beginning of recorded history. From the ancient Shamans to the modern day Shamans, Trance Dance has been a unique combination of healing sounds, vigorous and purposeful percussive rhythms as well as transformational breathing skills. Our ancestors in this ancient time, viewed nature as well as its elements as an expression of God. A Trance state promotes spiritual awakening, physical stamina, emotional well being as well as mental clarity. The dance is an act of worshipping and healing supported by unique musical soundtracks specifically for this type of healing.
To stimulate inner visions and to reveal hidden messages as well as answers to the many life’s questions a blindfold or bandana is used. The blindfold symbolizes solitude. It shuts down the major source of distractions to the brain, so maximum concentration can be achieved.
The origin of the dance was copying nature through movement as well as sounds. It was the first and highest way to connect with spirit. Trance Dance is the doorway to the soul. It takes you on an inner journey. You enter the inner aspects of the self and explore the body, mind and spirit connection which is not limited to your normal perceptions of time and space. There are no expectations, once awakened, the inner self knows the steps, as spirit takes over, so anyone can do it. The journey is not in your head or mind, it is a journey into your heart.
For thousands of years, a vital part of shamanic and eastern dance cultures have been ritual trance journeys. Shamans danced to enter the consciousness or become the spirit of the sun, the moon and various animal and plant life. They believed that the spirits within nature could empower them with compassion, courage and reveal insights into the future. Indigenous people have used this practise worldwide. Spirits are invited to give the visions or the healing to the people in need, to return home the lost “Soul Parts”, to bring about spiritual wholeness.