Rhythm is Medicine


Written some time ago, and re-sharing today

 “My dance is a celebration of my life, it tears me apart, and that is where I find God. When my body is moving beyond limitation, when my heart is bursting wide open, when sounds are pouring from my body, when I feel an immense surrender and at the same time a feeling of muscular strength, when my body pounds its feet on the ground and I am being hurled further and further towards the heavens, stretched between the earth and the sky, then I am between the worlds. I am pulled by spirit and rooted to the mother. Here, I am in the deepest prayer.” Sun on my back....

Yes, that is it, that is my medicine, that is my connection to God to Spirit. It is the rhythm of life pounding through my veins, awakening me to the potential of deep release. It is how I stay connected to all that I am and in that moment can receive what ever is needed. What ever information, what ever insights. It is called, simply, presence.

I always had the possibility of spacing out, you could almost say it was an addictive habit, but over time it had to get less and less and the dream-time would take over, reflecting back to me the images and messages from a spiritual domain. I think of addiction as soul-loss, the need to reclaim something back of ourselves. A disconnection to life and to living. The need to ignore emotions and to escape from life’s mundanity. From its harshness and its edgy, cruel and hypocritical dysfunction.

I remember a bottle of wine and a few pints of beer, once upon a time, the relaxation it would bring, the lessening of feeling shy and disconnected. The joint that helped me to sleep and for sure I could have so easily gone that way. So easily fallen into the clutches of addiction.

But I had a family, a big family and my children mattered to me! I had to be up in the night, early morning breakfasts, bed night stories, I had to function massively to stay on top and focus, pay attention to what was needed and hence my own trauma had to be put to bed for awhile. My children, my saving grace!

But those cravings for the assistance of relaxation did not come back, instead I found them in the dance, in my dreams in what I could see, sense and feel. My innate shamanic and witch like ability to see in the dark, to open my core to what was real, to smell the dysfunctions around me and to have that first hand experience of it knocking on my door, in all its addictive and pain ridden humiliation.

And my need for community grew, my own need for the medicine of my own people, the history that lurked in my ancestry felt strong. I journeyed into many of those communities, always looking for my own medicine, still seeking what was lost and finding what only I as that individual could actually find, in me, my own path.

I experimented occasionally, looking at the medicine in other paths, plant or otherwise of different communities and cultures, until it became confusing for me and still there was a loss of real connection to my own medicine path.

And still I kept coming back to my own body, my own dance and to the drum beat and there again, yes there again I would find it. No need for any substance, Spirit is here right now, in this place and I have no need to look any further. When the repetition fills my mind, the drum and my heart, the repetitive movement, the trance opening my eyes and voice and cellular body blend together, I am home and Spirit speaks through me and I have no need for anything else, except my food, my fuel and the waters of life.

I am home and I am alive and I am creating, far more than if I had found something outside of myself to lean into, to trust in, to take on the responsibility of keeping me sane. Spirit and my dance were my drug, my addiction, my meaning for life.

For it is all about surrender, to let go, with nothing to hold onto but the force of life itself.

Caroline Carey

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