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The Sacred Origins of “Twerking”

January 1, 2020

I know what you’re thinking, how can something like “twerking” be sacred? A dance that has become infamous due to Miley Cyrus’ embarrassing display at the VMA’s. Now, I don’t plan to go into an analysis or outcry against her stunt (plenty of other people have done that and she doesn’t deserve my energy) but I wish to reclaim
the dance for what it is, a sacred movement for women’s empowerment and health.

So called “twerking” has many links to dances of the African diaspora, especially the Mapouka from the Ivory Coast in West Africa. If anyone has taken an African or Afro-Caribbean dance class you can testify that number one: it’s an INTENSE amazing workout and number two: that a lot of the moves focus on isolations of the hips, pelvis and buttocks. These movements build muscle and control of the pelvis floor and core, muscles very important when it comes to childbirth and overall health.

On another level, these dances help to circulate chi or life force energy in our lower tantian. In Chinese Taoism our lower tantian, located three finger widths below our navel is where our life force and sexual energy is stored and generated. The lower tantian is a major point of focus in martial arts and considered to be our “root”. When this is strong, we have increased energy to support our physical and spiritual bodies. In the Tantra tradition from India, these dances circulate energy through our first and second chakras, which are connected to our feelings of safety and creativity respectively. When these chakras are balanced, we have a greater connection to our sensuality and abundance.

Belly dancing is another form of dance that is great for women’s health and spirituality as the dance embodies movements natural to women’s bodies. The isolations performed in these dances bring strength to the reproductive system. When energy is flowing properly in this area stagnant energy is dispersed helping to prevent or alleviate feminine reproductive issues such as painful menses and fibroids.

I believe all women should do dances that involve isolating and rotating their hips and pelvis like the Jamaican “wine” everyday. Dances like the wine and twerk are often done without consciousness, but when we add the level of awareness that not only are we having fun, we are healing ourselves, we can revolutionize our health and sexuality.

What if instead of women doing these dances as props in music videos, we did these dances in sacred circles amongst women to heal ourselves or in the loving presence of our partners who worshiped our sacred feminine bodies? This gives me goosebumps!! I personally LOVE reggae and soca music and will put it on while making dinner in my kitchen so I can wine it up! Our bodies are sacred and when we dance with intention and love we can generate a joy that can spread to our
entire life! So ladies, please take pleasure in your body, your hips were made
to move!

This is one of the many topics I cover in my classes and workshops. Be sure to sign-up for our mailing list to stay in the loop!

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