Beat Medicine

bettina Dance, Movement, Meditation, Life in Transition

I am sure you know the feeling when at times the thoughts in the head get too loud and overwhelming. For me that often happens when a person or a situation triggers me. My reaction and related thoughts take over the present moment and send me for a spin.

I have done years of sitting meditation and know how to direct my attention onto my breath or a mantra. I know how to chant and how to do Ujjayi breathing. And sometimes none of that helps. My thoughts take me for a ride if I want to or not. I call it my “head of hell”.

Gabrielle Roth, the founder of the 5Rhythms practice taught me about rhythms and beats. Beat medicine to be exact. “The fastest way to quiet the mind is to move the body” she taught, how to surrender oneself to the rhythms of life: flowing, staccato, chaos, lyrical and stillness.

Rhythm is our mother tongue. The easiest way to enter them is to dance… to bring our whole bodies into motion, to connect with our essence and to surrender to the beat. The beat helps us to anchor ourselves into the present moment. It is only alive in the NOW.

On those days when the voices in my head get loud and annoying, I find a song with a seductive beat and offer myself to it. It is a prayer … “Please take me” I whisper. I let my body meet the beat, my hands, my shoulders, my hips, my feet. It helps me shift from thinking into sensing, from planning or judging into presence. The thoughts begin to quiet, the pulsing of my dancing body takes over and leaves me with a sense of aliveness and gratitude to be here.