There is a definite
scientific connection between music and physical body.
Do you notice that you feel
differently depending on what you listen to? Impressions are food for our
Also, do you notice how
it is easier to move if there is a certain rhytm
and flow to it? Music has rhytm, and movement has
rhythm. Music helps us move. Even walking is like a dance. Martial arts
are like a dance. Human body is full of "tough stuff" -
muscles, bones, tissue. They all need to be stretched and exercised in
order to be in top working condition. Music and proper sounds,
including the sounds of Nature and the sound of silence, help us enjoy
more our stretching, running, hiking, etc. in
a way that is safe, effective and fun.
And, do you notice that
you feel happier when you are physically active? The endorphins make us
happy! And a lot more than that - movement helps us to stay
healthy. An old chiropractor told me to KEEP ON MOVING because that is
the only way to stay healthy. True - many African dancers I know are in
their late 50s and even early 60s and they look and move like youngsters.
The joints are lubricated, the connective tissue is held supple, the brain has to work to process music and dance
Physically, music enters all areas in the organism. Good
music tunes us. It brings together certain qualities inside us and
creates a very positive, healing effect.
Human body is full of
space - blood vessels, lungs, kidneys, sinuses, etc. all have space in
them, plus of course the modern physics teaches us that we are mostly
space. What does it mean? It means that these internal chambers are
very conducive to music therapy. Sounds echo in our bodies and
produce certain effects. It can help to relax us, which is already
healing. When body and mind are relaxed, healing automatically takes
place. The body is wired that way. That's why meditation and sleep are so
rejuvenating. Technically, the mind goes from the hectic beta state into
alpha and deeper states. This happens automatically every few minutes in
our brains, to keep us "recharged."
Healing with music is
very profound. It goes beyond the rational mind and reaches deeper parts
of ourselves. It also engages mind and body at the same time, as well as
feelings and higher spiritual aspects. In short, it is a miraculous
healing. And right here at our fingertips! It is very easy to listen to
some nice music, to sing it, to play it, to dance it - anywhere. While
washing dishes, while waiting in traffic, while in a studio taking a
It is very important to
listen to the right kind of music. Impressions are food for our brain. If
we listen to the traditional African music, to the traditional Eastern
music, etc. we give ourselves high quality "food". If we listen
to heavy metal etc. we drag ourselves down. I know this from personal
experience, noticing how different music affects me, what states of mind
I am in when certain music sounds good or bad to me, and also by watching
my cat. She either stays or leaves. She stays only for high quality
When I am disconnected
and edgy, then awful music like fast rock-n-roll sounds good to me, but
my cat hates it. When I feel more centered and happy, then I listen to
things like Tibetan chants and my cat adores it and even turns her head
towards it. Lama Tashi is her absolute
My cat stays to listen
to: Tibetan chants, African, belly dance, Native flutes, some classical,
etc. All that music produces a very uplifting, clarifying and positive
effect on me. I am one of the most sensitive persons you can possibly
find around, so we can use me (and the cat) as a correct barometer.
So, here is my youtube list of healing music.
Here is links to African music.
Yousuff Koumbassa is an amazing amazing dancer, the best I have ever seen. Check out
his video clips from HumanRemodeling youtube channel,
and from Camp Faretta Facebook page, or westafricandance.com.
is mature and has presence, very deep presence. His class is completely
about technique and completely free of any ego. Yousuff
is totally present yet he is completely absent from the picture, and the
Art is invited and comes in. So that frees us dancers to just Be too, and
to experiment and experience the Dance.
The directions we got from Yousuff were: take your time; and feel, have a
good feeling, enjoy the movement. "Take
your time" does not mean "slow it down". African dance is
really fast. How he explained it is: don't push, don't force yourself,
let the movement happen. And enjoy it. Have a
Dancing with this attitude is extremely healing. I was not tired or sore
anymore. Everything just flows. I danced for hours, stayed up late, and
still was full of energy. (Little nap in the afternoon and some good food
also helps :)
More importantly, I was free to be, and to feel, and to experience
myself. Yousuff created space for us. Because
he wasn't in the picture but only Art, there was a lot of space for us to
engage with the Art. Somehow I got more connected with my body and with
myself, and a lot of things became clearer.
Also, my body was "lubricated" and healed quite well, some neck
issues and shoulder issues and pelvic issues got better because I was
warmed up and stretched out. I also massaged it myself and got it even
better. Other dancers were reporting similar results with their necks and
bodies. Even my chiropractor told me to KEEP ON MOVING because that is
the only way to stay healthy.
Indeed, it is! Famous
African dancers are in their late 50s and even early 60s and they look
and move like youngsters. Movement and music helps to age very very slowly.