Skill, Personality, or Just How I Am?

The difficulty about ‘talking’ about ‘moving’ is that at some point, I arrive at a stuck place. My ability to express myself in words, usually easily within reach, seems to vanish, and I find myself stuttering, stammering, trying to make sense. In movement terms, it would be as if ‘bound flow’ has taken over, the ‘free flow’ of authentic movement suddenly stifled and suffocated.

So, having gotten the proposal out, I find myself in a moment of limbo, not certain where to go next, and feeling tongue-tied every time I describe what I’m envisioning doing. Someone asked me this past weekend, “When I see people dancing, moving about on the floor, I feel certain judgements about them based on how they move. Is that real, legitimate? Maybe they just lack skill”.

Many people have two left feet. Many people can’t find pitch when they sing, or hear/process a beat. This may have something to do with neurological processes, but it certainly doesn’t make someone a deficient human being. That is not what we mean when we talk about movement observation and developing an awareness of oneself from the inside out. There is a difference between ‘skill’ and the affinities we all develop that are uniquely ours, as part of a developmental process, as we become beings-in-motion. We come into the world with a relatively primitive repertoire of possibilities—-reflexes, responses to states of comfort and distress, and gaze. it is our gaze that is most under our control, our gaze that engages others in interaction, and our gaze that ultimately makes us move. We begin to ‘see’ the world immediately surrounding us—-crib, mobiles, toys, breast, bottle, faces. We engage with our eyes, and then with our reach, to grasp that which we see. That is where movement first begins to ‘organize’ into something purposeful. An interesting thought: if there is no one to look at, no one to receive our gaze, no thing or person to reach out to, what happens?