Five Elements Ecstatic Dance in Bali

We started our journey outside the wantilan, standing on the roots of a giant tree as Malaika smudged us with sage one by one, blessing us and clearing away any energy we no longer needed. As the fragrant smoke wafted over me, I released all the energy holding me back from being completely present in the moment and invited in all my personal power.

I entered the wantilan and took a moment at the altar, bowing to Ganesh, Remover of Obstacles. Then I walked to the back and stared out at the rice fields, stretching and grounding into my body, working out all the kinks from hooping my heart out at Hoop Kirtan the night before.

Once everyone had been smudged and cleared, we gathered in a circle while Malaika explained the path we would take as we journeyed through the five elements together. This shamanic journey came to her through spirit and is focused on breath. We had a different breathing pattern for every element, which we familiarized ourselves with before we began.

We started on the floor, laying down and exploring the feeling of the earth underneath us. It felt comfortable and safe on the beautiful dark wood. As we rose up, we grew roots into the earth to connect us deeply to Her spirit.

Dancing with Air has a beautiful expansive quality and the music was dreamy and ethereal, but drove us forward. We found partners and gently put our third eyes together, inhaling in unison, exhaling Aloha to each other, switching partners many times, connecting deeply with everyone we met.

Moving into Earth we started a powerful Sufi breath pattern where we inhaled twice with a long exhale as we stamped our feet in a primal rhythm to the drums. The energy became primal as we danced with our sister, and brought in the spirits of our mothers and grandmothers. It was intoxicating and liberating as we sent energy down into the Earth and received it in turn.

Awakening the Fire element, we stood in a circle and shook ourselves. We shook and shook and shook for ages. It was intoxicating to completely surrender to the flames by shaking every inch of my body, shimmying and shaking my entire being. There were primal yells, grunts guttural cries and moans in an orgasmic release of everything no longer serving us into the Flame. My entire body is still tingling. Once we stopped shaking, we spun out of the circle and into our goddess power, embodying Shakti, Lakshmi, Svaraswati and all the goddesses in all the realms. Some of us picked up our hoops and danced into our power with their spiraling universal energy.

Finally slowing down, moving into water, we explored our bodies with the reverence reserved for the most sacred of things. Touching each part in turn with sincere gratitude and love, with promises to treat our temples with the utmost respect and love. We then found partners and turned our movements into a contact dance, slowly moving together, feeling each others flesh, blood and breath as our own. We split off into groups and merged into new ones, finding support and safety in each other.

We ended up together in a puddle on the floor, utterly spent, limbs tangled, perfectly content and at peace in meditation. I didn`t want to get up, I just wanted to stay and bliss out in that pile of loving cuddles, but after a few minutes we sat up and closed our journey by passing around the seed of a cacao plant. We spoke two words as we held it. One was how we felt at that moment and the other was our gift to the world. Themes emerged. We all felt peace, clarity, love, bliss and gratitude in the moment, and many of our gifts were similar as well. Light, love, inspiration, passion, sincerity, sensitivity…..

It was such an honor to share this space with such beautiful, powerful and radiant women. The journey was transformative. Our states of consciousness were altered into higher dimensions through movement, breathwork and the loving guidance of Malaika, who is the embodiment of inspiration and joyful earth magic. We re-emerged lighter, stronger and more powerful beings. This was one of the most intensely immersive dance experiences I’ve had. It truly as a shamanic journey and I feel such a strong connection to everyone and everything, and intense gratitude that I am here right now, in Bali at www.sacredcircularities.com

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