I feel a little weird about taking the title The Mindful Dancer for this blog. Why? Well, I worry that it sounds a bit presumptuous. I am not the most mindful person. I try to be mindful. I would like to be mindful. I aspire to be mindful. But, I don’t deserve to wear the title anymore than the next dancer/artist/blogger. I sometimes make mindlessly rash judgments and my fluency in the language of sarcasm has on more than one occasion left me wishing I could reel back in a mindlessly miscast comment.
Rather, from my perspective the concept of The Mindful Dancer is more of a life goal, a way of approaching day-to-day life as a dance artist, teaching artist, and well-meaning human being. To me, being mindful as an artist suggests a moment-to-moment awareness of the creative life—a life lived with authenticity and from a place of integrity. These are things I hope to explore, live out, and share through this blog.
Now, this won’t be pretty. Part of living authentically is being honest about the struggles, doubts, and failures that you encounter in life and art. I know in my own past I have felt the pressure to pretend everything is great—that every endeavor turned out just the way I wanted it to. Afraid to show weaknesses or faults, we fake our way through life at times. We cover up our warts with make-up, we fill the void of our inner emptiness with outer accomplishments, and we hide our insecurities behind a mask of ego. In life, this results in being inauthentic. In art, this results in anything but art.
In that context, The Mindful Dancer is my attempt at living life unmasked, warts and all, as I navigate the shifting seas of life as a dance-maker, teacher, and buddhist.