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Circle Dancing:
Celebrating the Sacred in Dance

June Watts

Average Review Rating Average Rating 9/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Green Magic

Published : 2006

Copyright : June Watts 2000

ISBN-10 : PB 0-954-72308-2
ISBN-13 : PB 978-0-954-72308-8

Publisher's Write-Up

All over the world people are awakening to the sacred power of dance. This is the first book to explore the link between the modern sacred dance movement and its historic heritage. It is full of the knowledge, observations and experiences amassed by the author over the 20 years she has been working with Sacred Circle Dance.

The book contains:

  • the origins of Circle Dancing
  • symbolism – what is encoded within the steps
  • the energies generated by the dances and the levels on which they work within the indivdual dancer, the circle and the whole of life
  • and the author’s personal experiences with and within the Dance, her stories, memories, and perceptions.

There are sections on body awareness; on different rhythms and how they work on the body; on the energy patterns created with the dances; on working with the powerful light energy generated in the Dance; on the process of choreographing dances; and on the positive changes Circle Dancing creates, for the individuals and for the collective.

It explains the depth of Circle Dance; it explains how individuals come together and in the circle learn to move and be as one, and connect with universal spirit; how some dances bring childlike joy, some a feeling of power, beauty, peace; in ancient warrior dances there can be a healthy outlet for anger and a discovering of inner power; in the old planting dances there is a sense rootedness in the earth; and in the slow meditative dances there is the experience of the stillness and completeness of the innermost sacred self.

Circle Dancing is about being together, about community, about reconnection; and the book shows that the dancer meet her/his self in the Dance and how what is learnt there helps daily life; that the movement of the dance leads to stillness, the music to silence; that by circling around the still centre, there is the awareness of both the movement and the stillness; and that once the steps are learnt and completely integrated, there is the glorious feeling, not so much of dancing as of being danced, of BEING the Dance! This awareness teaches the dancer how to be lived by life, indeed how to experience BEING life.

A far-reaching book on many levels, beautifully written and inspirational both for dancers and for all who are seeking their authenticity and their purpose.

'An entertaining and inspiring book - deep and informative and full of passion.'

Dame Judi Dench
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Reader Reviews

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Review by Caroline (310506) Rating (9/10)

Review by Caroline
Rating 9/10
The challenge that Sacred Circle Dance offers is to find freedom within form. It is after all the eternal challenge of any society; how do I find my own dance, live the life I want to lead, within the confines and rules and obligations of the community.

This book combines lively and candid autobiography, with a history of the development of Sacred Circle Dance since its introduction at Findhorn by Bernard Wosien in 1976. June Watts speaks movingly of her connection with Terpsichore, the Muse of the Dance.

The book also functions as a dance manual, exploring technique and form whilst emphasizing the inner spirit. Clear distinctions are drawn between Sacred Circle Dance, folk dancing and more popular forms, such as salsa. She explains that the circle is the oldest dance form on the Earth and that it is predominantly the awareness of energy that puts sacred circle dance on a different level. Sacred Circle Dance in a gentle healing way brings body, mind and spirit together.

It relieves stress, releases creative energy and helps the dancer feel both centred and connected. It is meditation in movement.
June explains that because there is meaning and energy encoded in the dance the form of the steps function as a gateway to the formless, and that this can only come out, once the steps have become automatic. She talks about how the dancers integrate the vertical and horizontal axes, and unite them with the centre of the circle to create inner and outer harmony. At the same time, the essence of Sacred Circle Dance is not about getting the steps right and nobody is watching, but rather the sense of oneness and peace that comes from moving rhythmically in a supportive circle. On a deeper level, and put simplistically and baldly, what we are doing is re-creating balance between masculine energy and feminine energy, between the circle and the line.

There is something vast in this book which links the reader to the heart of culture, the heart of art - the heart of ‘The Dance’ that is life. It is a valuable and original contribution to the body of literature on creative movement.

It is very accessible and will appeal to anyone who longs to dance, but has never quite found the right form; as well as being inspirational for dancers, body workers, therapists and expressive movement teachers of all genres.
Caroline (31st May 2006)

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