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Touch - Stillness And Listening

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(David speaking) - I like the name of the video and, in the video, we talk about listening. In these comments, I want to talk about stillness as a means to listening. That the fewer things you're doing, the more the mind is free to listen. The more still you are, the more you create an environment in which listening can happen.

So I would like you to think of it as a two stage process. First you create the environment in which stillness can happen and then you listen.

Stillness and Listening

Artist Name:
Kristina Olsen
Song Title:
In My Arms
Album Title:
Live From Around The World
Artist Website:

From a review on the website: Olsen, an itinerant troubadour who regularly graces Australian folk festivals, was at her most engaging. Such was the candour of her songs and chatty tales that it would impossible for anyone with blood in their veins not to empathise with her. Her full-throated voice and crisp guitar served up such diverse subject matter as crop-dusting and prostitution, while a revealing yarn about life-drawing classes introduced The Truth of a Woman. From her new CD came In Your Darkened Room, the title track to an album containing some of her finest work, a black frost edging her usual warmth and humour.

And so, this is, actually, a markedly different thing. Even though it looks very similar.
So, one thing you'll notice is that the mind is not as much about enveloping as it is about just being.
So, they're there, and they're listening.
We teach this often in class. It works so well for the tango, because we have to listen so much to our partner when we dance.
The purpose of the pressure in the hands is not to support. It's to better make oneself aware.
You'll see that the angle of the head is subtly different.
You'll see that there's great stillness.
And so, really, when we tell people to do this, we tell them, "Don't move. Just stand there and hold".
And then, we ask, "Can you sense small things?"
Can you sense the breath on the palms? Can you sense the...
Of the follower, for example. Can both people sense the way the follower's breath changes the pressure between her arms and his?
Can you both sense the way the leader's breath does? Can you sense, as you're not moving, the tremble between you?
And then, as you're still, completely still, then you're together. And, if you do a few weight changes here...
And that's one weight change, but a beautiful weight change.
Actually, it's not even completed, I'm jumping the gun. But they're right and I'm wrong.
And so, we want you to dance in this place sometimes. We want you to dance in a place of stillness.
Rather than the place of jarring activity.