Egyptian Dance and Sexuality have always been associated and not for the best reasons.
I call it The Elephant in the Room – that aspect of the dance people deny or misuse.
On one side, the false moralists, the diplomats and the crowd pleasers who believe “cleaning” the dance from its sexual dimension will assure the respect it deserves; on the other side, the porno flick weirdos, the ones who distort and misuse the dance and its sexual dimension. There´s something in the middle, a healthy way of seeing ourselves and our dance, in all its dimensions – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual – but that place, the middle, is always the hardest to get to. Most people will fall into one extreme or the other.
We´re here to target the (im)possible: to clean our heads; to say YES to our bodies and to reconnect sensual pleasure with soul. We´re here to realize that Sexuality, in Egyptian Dance as in Life, is as a natural, powerful, positive force.
The origins of the dance remind us of its essential purpose: to celebrate life with its varied colours, to move in/through/for GRATITUDE towards existence´s abundance, to awaken the creative, sensual juices that make life possible, generation after generation, in Nature as well as in Humanity. Then we have an old association to deal with: the link between Oriental Dancers and Prostitution, one my 8 year career in Egypt proved to be painfully accurate.
The Ghawazi, the Gipsy dancers who entertained women, and men, in public were famous for their sagats, hip thrusts and extra services*; the “Awalem”, although more respected than their gipsy peers, were also associated with this plague. As if being a professional Oriental Dancer meant you HAD to be a prostitute. This association still exists in Egypt and in other countries throughout North Africa and Middle East.
We´re here to smash prejudices, open bodies, minds, hearts and souls to the following realities:
- If you´re an Oriental Dancer doesn´t mean, necessarily, that you´re a prostitute. There are indeed many Oriental Dancers who rise in their careers via prostitution, especially in Egypt, where the dance market perpetuates such association, but YOU´re an individual who can say yes or NO. The dance has nothing to do with the personal choices each dancer may take. So let´s separate the waters: Oriental Dance and Prostitution are different professions, starting with the fact that Oriental Dancers please themselves and prostitutes please others; Oriental Dancers are…well…D-A-N-C-E-R-S and prostitutes are SEX WORKERS.
- Sexuality, in itself, is a natural dimension of our Human existence. Deny it and you´ll be denying an essential part of your life. Deny it and you´ll be turning something wonderful into something nasty. Deny it and you´ll be denying pleasure, stamina, vitality, criativity, instinctive wisdom, strenght, your VOICE and inner power from your dance. And life.
- We cannot understand and practice Egyptian Dance in depth if we don´t allow ourselves to enJOY our own bodies and all the sensations, and experiences, they provide. Physical pleasure is the beginning of spiritual pleasure. Egyptian Dance shows us the link between those apparently distant universes (“As above, as below”, Hermes once said).
- Sexuality is not a subject limited to intercourse but a dimension of life present everywhere: when you delight yourself with the smell of a rose; when you taste a great plate of food; when you touch, or are touched by, a loved one; when you listen to a beautiful melody; when you get into the sea in a particularly hot day; when you get your feet into a warm, cosy, pair of socks on a Winter day; when you feel, in your gut, you HAVE to accomplish a certain dream and you actually go for it; when you say I LOVE YOU to a certain person or GO on that trip you´ve been postponing forever. When you laugh out loud; when you run; when you lay down on the grass, playing with your dogs. When, when, when (it´s an infinite list).
- Sexuality is present in our every day lives although most of us are disconnected from it. Just because you´re disconnected from it, it doesn´t mean it doesn´t exist. Our NEW Online Workshop – “Sexuality in Egyptian Dance – Unleashing Lilith” – will remind you of what it means to be FULLY alive. In dance as in life.
Are you in the mood to start enJOYing life without prejudices, shame and outdated ghosts?
Are you willing to take your dance, and life, into higher – oh, so, OMG, much more pleasureable – dimensions?
Do you want to know what FREEDOM tastes like?
“Sexuality in Egyptian Dance – Unleashing Lilith” Online Workshop created by Joana Saahirah exclusively for Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School, the place where your Uniqueness is celebrated.
Follow the link to join this rEVOLUTIONary Online Workshop divided in 3 different live & recorded classes that will change the way you dance & live: http://www.powhow.com/packages/joana-saahirahs-dance-studio/sexuality-in-egyptian-dance-unleashing-lilith-full-workshop