posted by jisom in tango mailing list
Feb. 10-11 Workshop in Anaheim (my chronology is shaky -- would welcome any corrections/additions to these notes):
We met in the Anaheim Convention Center in a large third story ballroom at the top of the longest most vertiginous escalator I have ever ridden. We travelled ever upwards near the glass wall front of the convention center looking down a boulevard of hotels and a strawberry field. Our ballroom was about 150 by 200 feet with very high ceiling, and a blue carpet swirling with patterns of ovals and
psychedelic spots and stripes -- a nice comfortable room, with a high ceiling of overlapping ovals striped with many lights, charcoal gray panels on one end, pale gray on the other three interrupted here and
there by large fabric acoustic panels. As we arrived on Saturday morning and converged on the Convention Center, it was great to see so many people carrying the familiar blue mat. It was a well-attended workshop and the room was packed.
We began by breathing, hands first on energy centers of the lower disc, exhaling down to floor, hands on feet, then bringing hands up the legs touching all areas of ankle, calf, thighs and winding up with hands back on vital centers. We were told by Erin (?) that the left side was the side for affection or feeling and that the right was the center for action. If we can shut off our internal dialogue and preoccupations with "me" and the demands of socialized reality, we can actually become conscious of the impulses from the universe which come through the fibers directly connected with universe on the left side vital centers where they are then translated into action on the right. We did a pass ("Pouring Intent into Two Pouches of the Body") beginning with a small jump, then turned head sharply to left, clapped hands over sides, then slid them into "pockets" over the left/right vital centers. Pulled left hand out of pocket and swept all the fibers from far left to right and returned hand to pocket. Still facing left, we pulled our right hand out of the "pocket" and swept from right to left, reinserting the hand into the pocket. Then we faced front and did the same thing. Then we turned right and, after a brief moment, turned and walked toward the left
Nyei talked about the energy body and about wearing a sash around the lower disc/vital center areas. She said that when Carlos used to tell her her energy body was in China, she would think: "Gee, that must be why I'm studying Chinese." When he told someone he considered talented that her energy body was in the room, Nyei would think enviously "Hers is closer than mine." She couldn't shake her competitiveness and literal interpretations. Carlos meant that when one is not acting impeccably but like petty self-concerned socialized beings, the energy body was out of reach. Only when we entice it by changing our behavior can we access it. "Your energy body is right here with you. You just need to listen to it," she said.
Nyei acknowledged the attendees who came from almost every country in the western hemisphere, including North and South America, Russia, Belgium, Holland, Spain, France, the Balkans, Italy, Sweden, Germany, Slovenia, Russia. A few came from Israel, South Africa, Australia and Japan. She said that Cleargreen was planning new workshops in Mexico City (April), Barcelona (3 days in mid-June) and Russia (latter part of June).
Miles Reid talked about the "mood of a warrior." He said that Carlos had once said that everything Don Juan had done to him during the whole time they were together had been merely to evoke a mood, the mood of sorcery – which we can sum up as a sense of awe and the feeling that life is always mysterious and that our time is short, life is fleeting, and there is no time to waste with petty self-concern.
Bruce Wagner gave a brief talk. Anyone who remembers, please give a summary (I'm waiting for some thread to come back to me).
We learned a new form of the Cloak of Confidence (a variation on the one taught in Berlin).
Reni gave a moving talk about how she had used to rail to Carol Tiggs about her mother. "My father could do no wrong, my mother could do no right." She had been unhappy as a child and couldn't wait to leave her family home. The crux of all her complaints boiled down to: "My mother didn't love me." Carol had asked if there wasn't anything she could say positive about her mother. Then Carol told Reni to find a new view of her mother, beginning with turning around the words "she didn't love me" in order to study the other possibilities in the sentence: i.e., "I didn't love her." Reni was able eventually to make her peace with her mother. They met at a restaurant and her mother told her that she had known that Reni was unhappy and that she was sorry that she had only told Reni what to do and had never asked Reni what would have made her happy. Reni did turn around her view of her mother and broke free of the consuming sense of injury she felt about her childhood. She realized that her mother had been clinging to her precarious financial security (Reni's father) and this had made her the way she was. Making her peace with her mother – who was aging and had health problems – allowed Reni to see herself more clearly. She said that all our resentments are really reflections of ourselves and that if we merely take at face value our criticisms or complaints of others, we are adopting a point of view that buttresses our sense of self-importance but imprisons us forever in a vicious circle: "They (or he or she) did this to me." Nobody does anything to anybody. By turning our assumptions a new way, we can gain a new perspective -- not on other people -- but on ourselves.
Nyei and Brandon Scott talked briefly and Brandon read the Cesar Vallejo poem about Andean Rita. He read it once in English, then in Spanish and then in English again. Don Juan had liked the mood evoked in the poem which he felt was a proper mood for a warrior giving a lost loved object its due.
Then we practiced a magical pass called "Stabbing in Search of a New Position of the Assemblage Point". Index fingers hooked with thumbs pushing against them, small jump, pierce with both at solar plexus level, then higher, then behind left knee, then right, then behind both knees. (Rolling arms forward from shoulders twice beginning on left, piercing to the front with left index, rolling with right hand first, then piercing front with right, rolling with left, piercing straight up twice, then hook over head, same on right. Pierce in front far, mid way and close (with index fingers about 6 inches apart), same at back,
close, midway and far. Pierce on an angle higher (in front), then midway and then close (like a vector starting with fingers distant from each other -- maybe about 3 feet and ending with fingers a few inches
apart close front of body). Pierce in front of left knee and behind, same on right. Then raise arms in a rolling motion above head, reach up with right and then left a few times, then swoop down to feet and pick up assemblage point as if using ice tongs (index fingers) from a spot between feet, and rub fingers into vital centers.)
We wrote in our Navigator's Log, did Running Man and recapitulated. After dinner, we returned to find a maze in the ballroom of tables turned on their sides and lined up end to end making aisles. We sat
behind these tables and did Running Man with our feet up, our knees bent at a 90 degree angle (thighs vertical, shins horizontal, soles of feet against the vertical table surface).
We did Mapping the Body and later in the evening, we did a lying down form which paired the Moving the Assemblage Point Down with the Left and Right Side Sweeping Energy one.
Erin gave a funny demonstration with Miles and Nyei of how our vital center fibers wilt when certain things are said to us ("Only you can do it!" or "Aren't you looking beautiful today" or "How could you be so stupid?") And then she demonstrated the pass ("Transporting Energy to the Adrenals") to counter the devitalizing effects that such comments have on us. (Inhale, exhale, shooting one arm forward, inhale as arm scoops energy and carries it to the kidney area of the back, other arm bent back over pubic area, and then, inhale and rub energy on kidney area). Nyei held her arm out straight and Erin demonstrated that she hadn't the strength to pull it down. Then she said to Nyei, "There is no more poetry in the world," and pushed down Nyei's suddenly limp arm. Nyei quickly did the pass to replenish her vital centers ("Transporting Energy to Adrenals"), and again her arm would not go down when Erin
pushed. Then Erin said to Miles: "There are no more animals alive in the world." Miles looked crestfallen and down went his arm. He retreated to a corner of the stage, did the pass once, then twice before
he could get his energy fibers up again. He stuck out his arm and Erin tried to push it down unsuccessfully. It was a demonstration of how susceptible our energy fibers are to what people say to us.
After that, Nyei asked us to write down as quickly as possible all the comments said to us by other people that make us wilt (incidentally, the expression "feeling deflated" expresses this phenomenon.)
As the grand finale, we did the Running Man with partners. The workshop ended with our dancing together in pairs in a dancing form of the Running Man.
"Forging the Dreaming Attention" was taught at Pomona 2000 and was based on the left side practice of the masculinity series with sticks. At Anaheim 2001 Cleargreen taught something simply called "The Dreaming Form". Two video forms are performed in new orientations in order to afford the practitioner a "new view". Here is my reconstruction of the form. Comments/corrections are encouraged. Use at your own risk.
Dreaming Form (utilizes video passes "Stabbing Energy for a New Position of the Assemblage Point" and "Pouring Intent into Two Pouches of the Body")
1. Begin in sitting position; rub palms and soles of feet simultaneously; legs stretch out and rub heels.
2. Smear hands over face and back of head. Shake out both hands to side.
3. Thumb under cheek bones, index/middle fingers on temples. Gaze at space on earth in front of you allowing eyes to refocus as they will.
4. Opposite thumbs on eye sockets; exert light pressure. Knuckle fits into boney area of eyebrow in the corner of eye sockets close to the nose. Index fingers rest over outer eyebrows.
5. Lie on back (chin toward chest), L ankle over R, rock forward and back to find rhythm of the energy body. Prepare stabbing (index) fingers by inserting thumbs behind index finger joints.
6. Stab over abdominal area with fingers pointing inward and almost touching.
7. Stab over solar plexus area.
8. Open legs, stab behind L knee, R knee, then both knees simultaneously.
9. Roll hands forward alternately 2X, inhale, turn to R side and stab 2X to R with L hand while R finger inserts into shoulder/chest joint, back to center.
10. Roll 2X; inhale. Turn to L side and stab 2X to L with R hand while L finger inserts into shoulder/chest joint; back to center.
11. Lengthen legs on the flooor. Roll hands forward alternately 2X; inhale. Stab above head 2X with L hand and then once pointing to R.
12. Mirror the actions of (11) with the R hand.
13. Turn on belly (first extending arm above head.) Raise upper body off mat, and stab 3x forward, coming closer to body each time, then mirror actions behind back (stabbing further away from body each time.)
14. Roll onto back by lengthening one hand over head. Resume rocking position with crossed ankles.
15. Stab 3X inward with both hand in a V shape.
16. Stab with L hand in front of L knee, then behind L knee.
17. Mirror actions of (16) with R hand.
18. Both hands roll together in downward circles 2x while moving toward head. Raise arms above head, fingers facing each other. Jiggle AP down to earth. Pick up AP from between feet (which are now apart) with stabbing fingers and apply to solar plexus.
19. Roll onto belly by lengthening one hand over head.
20. Lay still on stomach with face turned to L. The L leg and arm are bent 90-deg., and R hand can rest along side. Gaze up to periphery with L eye.
21. Insert L hand in pouch and perform sweeping motion (just above the earth) on L side, re-insert into pouch.
22. Mirror actions in (21) with the R hand. Body position does not change.
23. Turn head to face straight and rest on chin. Perform sweeping motions again with L and then R hands.
24. Turn head/R leg to R briefly, then face L, inhale. Close eyes for a few moments.
25. Rise up, hands and knees on floor. Slight rocking motion, feel fibers brush ground.
26. Insert L hand into pouch; remove; perform sweeping motion, re-insert into pouch.
27. Mirror (26) with R hand.
28. Move from knees to feet, hands still on earth and head hanging down. Shift weight from one hand to other while twisting lower body; move hands a little further out and repeat shifting;move L hand forward and grab something, then apply to vital centers. Perform same movement with R hand.
29. Rise up slowly till the hands are on the knees. Perform "Stirring Up Energy For the Adrenals (No. 18 from the Series for Preparing Intent) 2X, stretching further 2nd time.
30. Stand up erect slowly.
31. Perform a set of sweeping motions with L,R hands and head turned to left as on video. Then perform another set of sweeping motions with head at center. Look to the R, then walk to L.
posted by jisom
I'll try on the new Cloak of Confidence: (please correct me anyone who knows better)
Hands on midsection, inhale, exhale hands down legs to feet, touch feet with palm then rub hands over all parts of leg, to personal history and then hands back to midsection. Tap left ball of foot once, heel twice, pause, make small jump; same on right. Again on left. Then shake left foot, and scoop up.
shake right and scoop. Left leg swings to outside, then right; left leg steps over gate, then right. Small jump, ending with right foot slightly ahead of left, and left hand slightly in front of right. Splash energy with foot 3X, then small jump, left in front and repeat. Then hook right foot (making quarter turn) as if the foot is hooked under something. Quarter turn right, left leg lifted slowly as high as possible, body crouching, put left leg down. Then lift right leg and stomp down as if getting into a saddle. Do small right circle, larger slower left circle with hands. Then again right leg (turn 180 degrees) and put foot down more gently. Small right circle, larger and lower down left circle with hands. Then reach to right, back straight, pick up energy with both hands, step through it with left foot, then push down with palms, wrists flexed. Take small step with right foot, swing left foot up, right hand coming down over foot. Then take small left step, swing right foot on an angle, almost meeting it with left hand. Bring right elbow back, protecting fist with palm, shot left wrist forward, then right fist, and turn quarter turn forcefully with right arm up and left arm across front (this italicized part is same as original Cloak).