About Us

Our Team

Project Director ~ Dunya Dianne McPherson
Editorial Contributors ~ Karuna Haber, Anastasia Kaser, Iscah Paquin, Stephanie Rudloe, Alia Thabit, Celeste Yacoboni
Our contributors share Dancemeditation as a core practice.
Technical ~ Web Design: Thomas MacDonald, U&R Solutions; Webhost: Bill Tomczak

About Dancemeditation

Dancemeditation™, a unique moving meditation system for self-discovery, healing, & evolution, helps us be present in our body in the Moment.

Dancemeditation™ entwines three large bodies of work: Art, Somatics, and Shattari Sufism. We use a wide variety of breathing and movement techniques to quiet an over-active, distracted mind identity and invite intuitive, inspired embodiment. Dancemeditation™ practices encourage us to more closely feel our body while uncoupling the impulse to fix or alter it. We wake up inside the fabric of who and what we are. We trust.

Dancemeditation™ is practiced both in solitude and in company. Groups settings are non-competitive, largely non-verbal, and maintain a balance between inner & outer witnessing. Practitioners report feeling less physical, emotional, & mental anxiety, deep relaxation, expansion of creativity, improved immune function, renewed vigor & inspiration, a stronger connection with their intuition, a clearer mind, a peaceful heart, and an enriched, happy body.

We are a body-being.
We delve inside,
deepening into an ever-unfolding Subtlety.
Here is how it might feel...

“We get down on the mat, move hypnotically, dumping burdens we’ve been carrying all day, or all week, or all our life…Our bending and breathing, arcing, torquing and squeezing lull our controlling-ness to sleep; or strong repetitions of vigorous motion release tension. On the mat, we practice the patient art of slowing, feeling what we are doing, noticing the sensation of breath, skin, organs, bones, space, gravity. We slow and notice and linger to digest what we are feeling. We experience our experience…The more we slow and notice and feel, the more we can notice and feel. Little by little, anxiety whittles down and whispers of our real-ness sneak out to play inside us…Little by little, we cut through our crust of who we think we are, our personal identity, and our social conditioning, that sly, nimble thief inside our intimate body.

We move and breathe and feel, disengaging our ticks and drives, slipping out of the groove, a sort of sleight-of-hand in the body. Our practices are deceptively playful and unostentatious, because if we tell ourselves to be serious and fix this, then we are just practicing self-correcting and perfectionism and competitiveness, and so forth down the long list. A friend once said, “Dancememeditation is such a pleasant way to do what is difficult.” We do not-doing, undo overdoing, and finally notice that something else is going on, has been going on unbeknownst all this time.”

Dunya Dianne McPherson, Founder
excerpt from Dancing into the Deep

About Dancemeditation Practices

BASIC PRACTICES
In Dancemeditation, we seek the sense of ‘being moved’. We relax, fall into receptivity, then a moving dynamism. We rest to integrate. Our practices, done with undivided attention and seamless concentration, lead us into deep meditative states and into an intuitive movement flow.

SEQUENCES
Here are a few examples to give an idea of our Practice. These Sequences deepen meditative capacity and sensorial subtly, while gently and globally expanding flexibility and strength. Instructional DVDs are available thru the Shop.
~ Rocking Array: Each part of our body has its own voice and we strive to let each part speak. This might mean, for example, unhooking the shoulder from the ribcage so each can articulate distinctly. Rocking gently shakes these often frozen body parts loose, freeing them. Rocking is emotionally comforting and stimulating for the nervous & circulatory systems.
~ Sand Tracings: The prone circular & spiral movements of this sequence, done with awareness of skin sensation and gravity, encourage relaxed flexibility, whole-body integration, and coordination.
~ Opening Sequence: This breath-based fluid yoga emphasizes equality of awareness in all stages of the movement. Breathing motivates and roots the oceanic repetitions. The oscillations lull the cognitive mind and accentuate an understanding that the act of stretching, rather than holding, is continuous motion. This method engages our body’s fascial network, relieving joint stress.

SUBJECTS
Practice Subjects are explorations—in essence, movement mantras—which absorb our mental focus and interrupt habitual patterns. What is Unseen can emerge. There are many possibilities, all such beautiful ways to activate intuition, creativity, and inner freedom. Here are a few examples.
~ Breath Dances: We bring awareness to the continuous base note of breathing inside our moving bodies and experiment with different relationships to that pulse. Rhythmic & Non-rhythmic breathing
~ Gesture: Hands immediately spring to awareness here, but gesture can be made by any body part, or with the entire body. Gesture’s semaphoric, symbolic language opens the realms outside ordinary perception and interfaces elegantly with the hypnotic study of ornament.
~ Deep State Motion: Moving in full receptivity—the sense of being moved—can’t be predicted or forced but it can be gently, sincerely invited. Deep State Motion is this mystical communion. To be moved is to be in what the Sufis call tawhid, or Unity. Deep State practices are a direct handing of the energetic lineage of Sufism.
~ Whirling: Whirling is a dynamic Sufi purification practice. Begun by the beloved mystic, Jallauldin Rumi, it has been handed directly down in an unbroken lineage from practitioner to practitioner for centuries. At the same time it is inherent in all humans; children naturally whirl.

Dunya doing Opening Sequence. Photos: Stephanie Rudloe

Dancemeditation™ is a program of the Dervish Society of America (DSA), a nonprofit 501-C3 organization helping people realize their potential by honoring their body and its movement ways using evolutionary Sufi Dancemeditation practices.