I have learned that belly dance is all about isolation. The hypnotizing nature of the dance comes from the way the hips and the torso move independently.
In class, the instructor lined us up to perform a walk/hip-bump from one end of the room to the other. As always, I started in my head: “Step, hip, step, hip, swoop arms, fingers together, step, hip...”
Then I encountered the miracle of community. My own internal monologue of exaggerated concentration was overpowered by the collective “ching!” of our coin-clad hip scarves. I felt the women around me moving in the same rhythm, arms dipping and extending together, our hip-bumps heralding the arrival of some crazy new kind of sexy. When I was aware of being in a community, the dance was easier, and my brow was less furrowed.
When I take up my role in the greater community, I am able to recognize that I am not a lone dancer straining to succeed. I am part of a company, growing more powerful through a shared rhythm.
God, may every ching-ching of my hip scarf ring out my praises to You.
Abigail Wurdeman is a founding member of the Prayables Pray Maker Council, freelance writer and editor.She is a writing coach at Jeannette Katzir, and contributing writer at . Abi lives in Los Angeles and can be reached at .
I am great at withdrawing,
at crawling deep inside myself,
forgetting that I do not, cannot
operate in isolation.
Draw me out again
and show me the community
You've given me.
Make me humble enough
to accept the blessings of others,
bold enough to offer gifts of my own,
and clear-minded enough to see brilliant streaks of You
throughout this priceless community.