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Art by Elena Ray
"When you discover the power and the energy that resides within you, it is like coming home. Chakradance is a form of nourishment for your true self, for your soul. Chakradance will free the energy in your body and open you to a deeper experience of life." Natalie Southgate
Recently, I was listening to Chakradance founder, Natalie Southgate, talk about Chakradance and healing, and how it varies from other healing modalities.
Chakradance approaches wellness through the awakening and integrating of the chakra system using free-flowing movements to particular frequencies of sound.
If, as many energy practitioners believe, the chakras are a energetic blueprint for our whole being - physical, mental and spiritual - then by balancing the chakra system we allow our subtle energy to flow freely and to revitalise and enliven our whole being.
Chakradance as a dance practice of the soul
Chakradance is a practice of self-guided healing which works on many levels, body, mind and at the level of the spirit, or the soul. Self-guided because we move intuitively and allow our spirit to awaken, shift and release our subtle energy in its own unique way.
At the mental and spiritual level, our subtle energy system may contribute to how we engage in life and interact with others, and indeed to our whole emotional and psychological development.
Chakradance practice is based on Jungian psychotherapy. Carl Jung believed that a clear understanding of the human psyche could not be gained through purely scientific methods. Instead he used the tools of the subconscious mind, the world of dream, myth, art, and folklore from around the world.
Jung interpreted the chakra system as a model for the developmental phases of higher consciousness, and he interpreted its symbols in terms of the process of individuation, that is the individual’s journey towards wholeness. He saw this as a psychospiritual awakening, that is, of both mind and spirit.
This work of awakening the soul is a gentle unraveling through the moving meditations, mandala art, and the integrations in Chakradance
Chakradance is designed to be gentle, to be a safe experience where we feel able to let go and unfold our inner self.
The intention here is not to have these big cathartic releases. From the Jungian perspective, Jung believed if we force open the psyche, we can't integrate it. It's too much and too overpowering to bring into our consciousness all at once, so the awakening just sinks back down into the unconscious.
So the whole Jungian way of working and the whole Chakradance way of working is to really gently unravel each blockage, everything that we are holding one piece at a time, piece by piece, unraveling gently and continually integrating as we go.
Jung believed that healing should be intuitive and gentle. Chakradance is not designed to force great emotional and spiritual upheavals, but rather through its gentle flowing practice to allow the surfacing, release and healing of any issues or energy that are ready to be resolved.
Beyond the enjoyment and free expression of the dance, the deeper purpose of Chakradance is this transformational soul work
When you dance through a chakra, you allow what is in that chakra to rise up to be healed.
As these energies begin to move, you experience life through the lens of this chakra.
Say for example in the sacral chakra, you may experience life deeply though the lens of your senses and emotions, your sexuality and your creativity.
You may find yourself very awakened to your senses, or notice your sensuality bubbling up with pleasure. Any blocks in these aspects of self, that are ready to come up, will arise to be processed and released.
As you go through the cycle, through this process with all seven chakras, you are literally moving energy around all those aspects of self, you are transforming your self.
So then when you return back to the beginning, to begin the next cycle of transformation, you discover another aspect of a chakra that is revealed, ready to heal and integrate.
The soul work is ongoing as you become ready to experience the next level of transformation that's waiting for you.
Chakradance is an ongoing process and a commitment to practice the work of the soul in all aspects of our lives
People often ask me if they should keep coming to Chakradance as an ongoing practice.
Yes, you love Chakradance, you have experienced great results, but after you've done a chakra cycle, well, you have done it already, right?
My experience is that each time I dance in the energy of a chakra, something new emerges, it's like peeling the layers of that proverbial onion, there's always a new layer to explore.
As someone who has practiced Chakradance regularly for three years, I can absolutely attest to the benefits of continuing to practice, and really, what a beautiful way to do soul work.
Of all the methods I have tried, Chakradance is not only the most powerful, but the most pleasurable. Really I shouldn't call this soul 'work' but soul fun. It's the most natural, intuitive thing to discover the rhythm of your soul.
And because it is so enjoyable, I am happy to do it regularly, and that to me is the key to any spiritual practice.
"Try and be in the energy of the chakra you are working on for that whole week. Take Chakradance out of the classes and into your life and start to heal and transform in this commitment to the practice." Natalie Southgate