into Sacred Circle Dance
From Winterberries to Portals: The day I received the 7 portals, I felt a strong pull to go walking through the wooded moraine trails. At the entry I bent down and picked 7 winterberries and decided on the spot that I would eat them slowly and consciously, one at a time, as I walked. I had to walk carefully, for the trails are narrow and uneven, rocky and unmaintained, and the land goes sharply up and down.
As I relished the first berry, I started thinking about how I’m drawn to Sacred Circle Dance — a simple musing. When I put the second berry in my mouth,
I started getting ideas about “seeing" in the dance circle. There was nothing out of the ordinary about my thoughts, but with the next berry, and with each subsequent berry, another aspect of the dance came into my thoughts. At the end of the walk, I realized that I had received some body of information that
I didn’t consciously seek but that covered a wide area of my circle dance experience. It didn't feel complete, so I walked the trail again, and the categories came through again, in the same order, but with deeper meaning.
I walked the trail one more time, and then came the third level, leading to sensations of transcendence.
As I walked home, I realized that something out of the ordinary had happened. Perhaps I should pay it some attention, so I jotted down what I could remember and went on with my day. Once I got around to studying my scribblings, I was able to give them form. I found a name for each category, realizing each was a separate doorway into the experience of the dance.
The information wasn't very earth-shattering or special, but it calls for more attention. I have to honor that this information came to me unbidden, all as one complete body of thought, in a wild area of Nature that called to me one odd day. I feel some responsibility to it; I am called to give it life, which I do as
I choreograph and dance, teach and offer it to others.
Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if I had picked 10 or 11 winterberries. I reflect on the question, if I had been asked to name
7 portals into SCD, what would I have chosen? These are not the ones I would have chosen. I have seen others: 7 Directions, 7 Chakras, 7 Notes, 7 Colors, 7 Levels of vibration, 7 Rays. I think what is unique to the portals that came to me, is that they are an everyday part of our Being and directly accessible without any special knowledge. In other words, just as we honor the everyday sacred with our dance, so we have everyday, ordinary tools. All they need is our attention.
Some of these qualities might have been on my list of portals, if I had been asked:
~Breath ~Attention ~Intention ~Rhythm ~Pattern ~Gesture ~Openness ~Integrity
What would yours be?
The Seven Portals
1. The Call
2. Visual Perception
3. Physical Connection
5. Energetic Body
7. Spiritual Connection
Each portal has 3 levels:
Entry Level -
This is how we begin: it requires attention, some education and practice
to get comfortable learning the dances and how to connect and be in the
circle. We can function very well at this level, and it leads us to the next...
Engaged Level -
Here we are involved, more comfortable, receptive, and in the flow. We are
connected, learn more quickly and continue to discover, leading to the...
Transcending Level -
We are moved to a depth of connection with Self, the community of the
circle, and more profound elements of the dance. We are part of the Whole
that invites transformation; the dance becomes a spiritual path. At this level,
all portals lead to the same place of Oneness, Wholeness and Transcendence.