The Dance

“At the still point of the turning world, there the dance is—and there is only the dance. Yet the enchainment of past and future, woven in the weakness of the changing body, protects mankind from heaven and damnation which flesh cannot endure. Time past and time future—allow but a little consciousness.”

–T.S. Elliot

Photograph by Michael Hull, https://unsplash.com/@michaelhull
Photograph by Michael Hull

Lynnda Pallio vividly describes those wondrous still points in poetic prose in her multiple-award-winning new book, Trusting the Currents. Trusting the Currents is consciousness storytelling at its best. I read the book in two days—couldn’t put it down. The characters of Addie May and Jenny are fully developed and totally captivating, and their stories took me to a quiet place where I could listen and absorb. They encouraged me to seek out spiritual spaces where I can “allow for a little consciousness” and welcome what happens without having to explain it.

After a lifetime of searching for higher truths and trying to grow physically, intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually, I have discovered recently, through my work with Dr. Artie Egendorf, (www.energysway.com), that all of my churning and turning attempts are not necessarily the best paths to that still point in Elliott’s poem or to Addie May’s and Jenny’s trust in the universe.

Physically, I like to stay active; I like to walk, run, hike, bike, swim, and play golf. You might say I’m a bit hyperactive. My parents and friends might even find that description to be an understatement, given my level of activity. But what I find now is that, at the and of whatever huffing, puffing, over-exerting workout in which I have been engaged, the real peace is the moment after. At the still point, I simply relax and the tension disappears. No pushing harder. No forcing. No competing. No comparing. Just an easy, flowing dance with the moment.

Intellectually, I like to stay engaged; I like to analyze, synthesize, dimensionalize, operationalize, grid, label, name, and produce. You might say I’m a little compulsive. But what I find now, at the end of all my reading, writing and thinking, is a sense of clarity that comes when my mind is calm. At the still point, I simply let go and listen. The cacophonous chatter disappears. No words. No labels. No grids. Just a gentle dance with the moment.

Emotionally, I like variety, intensity, passion, engagement and intimacy. You might say I’m a little over-zealous. But what I find, at the end of any intense engagement, is that the greatest connection and deepest love comes when I’m holding my sleeping grandkids on my chest. At the still point, I simply accept and give thanks. The intensity disappears. No expectations. No disappointments. No desires. Just a compassionate dance with the moment.

Spiritually, I like to practice qigong, meditate, do yoga, and study esoteric literature. You might say I have become a bit routinized in my habits and disciplines. But what I find now, after all this endless doing, is that when I’m not doing anything but welcoming whatever light brightens my day, I experience endless love, harmony, and peace. In qigong, the still point is between release and absorb. One of the most powerful principles in the practice is to come to a full stop between movements. In this go-go-go world, coming to a full stop has enormous benefits. In meditation, the pause between breaths is where the magic is: stillness in movement, fullness in emptiness, everything in nothing. At the still point, I simply open up to energy’s way. The rigidity disappears. No quests. No striving. Just a grateful dance with the moment.

At the still point of the turning world, there is no what—only who. And the who is you at One with God or Tao or Nature, or Universal Energy. No need for labels, diagrams, analysis. Just the moment. Just the magic. Just the mystery. Just the dance.


Also published on Medium.

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