Kizomba. A widely misinterpreted dance. From afar perhaps it looks like we are just hugging? Or just walking? Or having a hugely sexual experience with our dance partner?
No, no and no. In this blog I want to talk very openly and honestly about the energetic component of dancing Kizomba, and how we can address the huge elephant in the room when it comes to this dance. The elephant’s name is desire. I will also talk about our energetic body referring to chakras. Chakra is the sanskrit word for wheel and speaks of energy centres in the body which relate to certain components of our nature.
I want to first define how I am talking about desire. When I speak of desire I am talking about an impulse or motivation in our bodies/ psyches which enlivens and rejuvenates our life force energy. There are many forms of desire, not purely a physical or sexual desire. When we come to dance kizomba all of us are motivated by desire, otherwise we would not leave our house late at night and go dancing until the early hours of the morning, we would not travel the world to learn more, we would not encourage our friends to try it. But what kind of desire are we motivated by ?
For some it will be the desire for belonging. This kind of desire is for community, for friendship, for a sense of oneness with another person, a comfortability, a connection and a sense of having a place.
For others it will be the desire for playfulness. To express our inner child, to have fun, to take a break from an overstimulated mind, or stressful lifestyle, it is an escape and a creative playground at the same time.
For others it is a desire for challenge. To learn a new skill, to become “the best”, a physical and mental obstacle course to dance through each night, reaching new levels of skill acquisition and mastery.
For others it is a desire for rapture, or spiritual connection. Here I am referring to a spiritual connection with God, the universe, source, spirit , however you name this higher consciousness. I do not refer to a connection with another person, but rather using the dance as a tool to connect with the higher self.
For others it is a desire for eros. Eros is the sexual, chemical, creative and life force energy. Some people enter the dance looking for this kind of connection, and others find it will be aroused by surprise and without intention.
You have probably experienced all of these forms of desire in one way or another across your dance journey. However we often shame or blame some of these desires. It is often said Kizomba is not a sexual dance. And I agree, by nature no it is not. However, of course it has the potential to be. It also has the potential to connect you with a deeply meditative state, a transcendental state, a state of love, of bliss, of connection the list is endless.
I want to talk about the desire for eros, and how we can manage this energy when we are dancing Kizomba. If your intention is for eros when you go social dancing, firstly be mindful of this, and acknowledge that this energy will not be welcome with everyone you dance with. Take care not to project this energy where it is not welcome, instead, using breathing techniques, allow the energy to travel through your whole body. Using the breathe to send the energy from the sacral chakra all the way up to the heart chakra. If you are not familiar with your energy body try to notice where you feel the strongest energy pooling in your body, and send it upwards towards the heart using breathing and visualisation. Ground yourself by placing strong attention on the connection of your feet on the earth. Be present with your partner, if this energy is not welcome with them, take care not to “leak” into their space. Be receptive to body language etc which will show you how your energy is being received.
If you find yourself in a dance where you are receiving unwanted sexual energy from your partner, you have a few options. First of all, if you feel uncomfortable you can call off the dance. Otherwise, you can send the energy back to your partner by visualising a shield of white light around your whole body, as you do so, imagine the energy of your partner rebounds of the shield and re enters their body. Or if you prefer you can visualise a mirror around your body with the safe effect.
What happens if you are enjoying a beautiful connected dance, you both feel this kind of desire and eros connection? Perhaps you are enjoying a dance with your partner and invite this energy in. How can you move with this eros energy? You can use it to nourish yourself, and your partner by bringing the attention back to self, feeling the energy where it begins, and allow the energy to travel all the way up to your heart space. As you move you can use your breathe to gently guide the energy upwards to fill your whole body.
Learning to master your energetic body is one of the beautiful gifts Kizomba can provide us, however if we do not openly discuss this, it is hard to generate an awareness and practice for this element.
Personally my biggest desire in Kizomba is for rapture and connection with what I call the divine. I have had a handful of mind blowing experiences whilst dancing kizomba, which would be equivalent to meditating in a cave for months on end. The visuals, clarity and higher wisdom that was able to come through during these dances blew me away, and to reconnect with this incredible feeling is a huge desire and motivation for me.
Where will you feel this divine connection and how can you access it ? You will feel it within yourself. To access this place, come with a clear mind and intention to surrender to yourself, listen to your partner, and become one with the music. When you are in a dance that feels safe and connected, a dance which does not require over compensating for lost technique (yours or theirs), and a dance which is in flow with the musical waves, you can then begin to connect with this higher presence. This presence exists within you already, the dance becomes a channel to access this. The other person in the equation actually melts away and the connection is no longer necessarily with them, it becomes between you and your highest nature. You may see colours, you may feel an immense peace or rejuvenation, you may have an epiphany, elated, ecstatic and blissful experience.
Kizomba is so much more than a physical combination of steps danced to music. If we allow our experience to expand, and our mind to melt away we are met with a myriad of possibilities for connection and presence. Denying the presence of all kinds of desire in Kizomba may hinder your learning process, and block you from accessing these states.
Having said all of this working with the energy body, like any practice requires some mastery and guidance in the beginning. If you are curious to know more about this element of yourself, or this element of your dance practice, feel free to reach out to me with more questions.
The best place to begin is with the self, this blog will be an introduction into several more blogs and video post showing exercises and concepts you can work with to tap into this element of yourself.
What kind of desire is motivating you to dance Kizomba?
~ Genevieve Rogan
FB: Genevieve Rogan DancingChange
Extra Resource ~ “Can we be spiritual when we have desire?” - Tantra Made Easy Podcast.with Shashi Solluna Feat. Dr. Saida Desilets