Music is a huge source of inspiration and motivation for me. Obviously dancing is important to me and that is one of the reasons that I enjoyed my time Zambia so much. Music is communication on a soul-deep, cellular level. As long as you can hear, you can hear a beat and feel it moving your body. Most of us have at least one song that we absolutely cannot sit still while it’s playing. You don’t need to speak the language or understand the words to feel the rhythm.
All of the languages of sub-Saharan Africa stem from the Bantu language. The Bantu language has evolved over time, as people migrated and moved away, forming 250 separate languages. But the remarkable thing that I learned is that the root for the word drum –n’goma- is still the same in all the Bantu languages. Other words have changed greatly, but the heart and soul- the word for the core of music- has remained unchanged. This astonished me, but it repeated for me something I’d already learned: music and dancing are essential to life.
that. When you create that magical space around the fire where everyone has the same information,
the same understanding of how the circle of energy works, then people become more at one with each
other, more whole. The junk falls away, people become more honest on a soul level, and can unfold
and fly. The drum circle has elements of entertaining and being entertained, but it's also the original
church. In that space people can experience real transformation." ~Jimi Two Feathers
I learned so much from those kids about letting go of my inhibitions and honoring the wonders of my body (plus some fancy moves). When you dance at an event in Zambia, people will cheer and dance with you. No matter how weird or different your moves, I’ve never seen them laugh at someone who was dancing. Just celebration and joy at the connection to the beat and their bodies. There is a dance move that eight-year-old Mwelwa did that sums up what I learned. It’s a hip bump, but she’d twist her torso around to look at her bum and always look shocked that she could do such a cool thing (it looks more complicated than it sounds, but I don’t have video). It always reminded me to be impressed with cool things my body can do.
I encourage you to honor the beat inside you and the wonders of your body. Put on your favorite songs and just shake your booty. No need to do a specific step or worry about how silly you think you look. Just enjoy the motion and rhythm! Don’t forget to smile!