Ecstatic Dance – Understanding Its Concept and Purpose

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Ecstatic Dance – Understanding Its Concept and Purpose

girl ecstatic dancingEcstatic dance is not a New Age dance practice since it has been around for centuries when dancers did not have to follow specific steps but only submit their bodies to music rhythms. In classical Greek literature, the maenads or the female followers of the wine god Dionysus, practiced ecstatic dance as a religious expression.

In contemporary settings, ecstatic dance is a form of meditation to which dancers move freely to the rhythm of the music until they reach a point of experiencing ecstatic trance in varying degrees. While in a trance state, the ecstatic dance practitioner will feel a strong connection to others while becoming aware of their own emotions. Doing so enables them to cope with stress while attaining calm and serenity.

Ecstatic Music as Played by DJs in Dance Floors

In nightclubs, most DJs include ecstatic dance music in their playlist by picking up pieces of music with different styles and tempos that they weave together as a music selection that can draw out ecstatic emotions in the dance floor. Ecstatic dance music is usually a combination of bass, tribal, house and electronic genres.

electronic dance musicActually, the tribal characteristic makes for a hard-hitting ecstatic music that is also capable of creating spaces for soft music. The break in tribal music allows a dancer to reflect inward and recover from the trance-like state.

Guidelines to Follow to Reach the Ecstatic Trance State

Apparently, those looking to experience the trance-like state that enables a dancer to connect with his or her inner self and emotions, must pay heed to the following guidelines:

  • Do not allow inhibitions to prevent you from dancing the way you want to.
  • Do not take intoxicants in order to keep a clear mind when meditating through dance.
  • Stay in the present by not talking, and by not using phones and cameras since they can draw you out of a meditative state.
  • Whenever communicating is necessary, make eye contact to signify agreement or conversely, look away to express a No answer.