Dimensions of Dancing
inner dancing that is not theatrical, may be driven by a greater imperative,
like the daring imperative to bring into our life and our world the power of
the dance, in the flow of which, the 85 great temples of Khajuraho were
built, called the erotic temples. We need this creative power to uplift our
world, and for this we need to bring into our dance the element that had developed
chapter presented here is the 7th part of a
series focused on the Universal Marriage of
The morning after our return from the temples of Khajuraho began like all the previous mornings that we had together. It began with me opening my eye to the eternal sunshine of India, eternal so it seemed, and to the sound of Indira's voice and the melody of her gentle song, I greet you and I kiss you that opened up a day filled with kisses and delicate delights.
She wore a short and bright yellow dress that morning that was barely longer than a shirt. It seemed to be her morning dress. It had a row of buttons in the front from top to bottom. I noticed that only one of them had been done up when she sat down at the table for the morning tea. She smiled when she saw that I noticed that.
"Do you really find me beautiful?" she asked when we were settled down for our 'getting ready for breakfast' on the balcony.
"Beautiful?" I repeated the question.
My mind had still been aglow when asked the question. It was filled with the image of her standing at the balcony railing where I first saw her when I got up, her short silk gown radiating like gold in the rising sun, contrasting with the rich color of her skin. The gown had been completely unbuttoned then, when I came onto the balcony with my eyes not fully open. They opened fast to the beautiful sight. The gown was as open as the view across the city from our balcony high in the 'sky.' It wasn't that I hadn't seen her undressed before. Perhaps it was the dance in her eyes, the sparkle of it, and her smile, that instilled this wonderful warm feeling.
"The dress code has changed," she said with a smile when she noticed my delight with her new dress style. "Do you like my new morning gown that I bought in
Khajuraho? I bought it for you. It's interesting, don't you think? It honors the pearl of Islam, but not its hard shell. I enhances the beauty of the human form, but it does not hide it. Islam dresses up its women with beautiful things. That is what my new gown does. But by new gown is also left open to honor the Hindu spiritual force, the force that is celebrated in the temples. My new gown honors both dimensions. Do you like it?"
I nodded with a great big smile.
"But what about myself?" she said. "Do I measure up to the beauty that we both saw in those temples? I often see myself as being drab, uninteresting, common, not exactly ugly, but a kind of 'small' in what men value about women."
She stood up and left the balcony before I could answer.
After she returned and was sitting down again at the table I noticed that the center button remained done up, perhaps to keep the gown in place.
"What is this beauty, Peter, that fascinates you about women, the beauty that I don't seem to see?" she continued her earlier question.
"The beauty that I see is in the beholder," I replied with a grin. "That's how it is and always has been. And that scene,
Indira, is wide. It is as wide as the sea. Maybe you have set your own parameters up to narrow so that you don't see it all. When I first saw you, you struck me as someone special. But when I heard your greeting, I greet you and I kiss you, you struck me as someone most beautiful, a gentle woman with a beautiful soul. This amazing greeting turned and ordinary moment into a moment of celebration, and the celebration lingered on with a bright promise. It became a moment filled with light, and what followed became a delight beyond expectation. Just seeing you was a delight. In that delight my waiting with you for my baggage to arrive at the baggage carousel at the airport was a time of ecstasy. This day was the first day that I remember when I had hoped that my baggage wouldn't come at all. Unfortunately, it came down the ramp all too soon. I think we all need those moments of ecstasy, because out of them flows a higher kind of peace and a more profound love. That's why we need to let the ecstatic moments continue and unfold evermore. India's spiritual pioneers from ancient times were right to have built grand temples to celebrate those moments of ecstasy, which we all need. The builders of Khajuraho were right to keep those moments alive for all times to come, to keep the 'rivers' flowing for the building of a greater peace within and a richer love that has ever seen."
"And here comes another surprise for you," I added moments later. "Do you remember the four development streams, the rivers of spiritual and scientific development that Mary Baker Eddy, America's spiritual pioneer, had defined for her pedagogical structure? Do you also remember me telling you that the first development stream contains the science of marriage, our gateway to the Principle of the Universal Marriage of Mankind? I think this is the domain that my friend Helen in East Germany had described as our universal light; or rather the principle in which the universal light of mankind is rooted, the beauty that unfolds in ecstatic moments of profound discoveries, profound relationships, and profound love. And the second development stream that Mary defined relates closely to Helen's idea of the universal kiss that she said is our peace. A kiss is deemed sexual in India, isn't it? Can the universal kiss be anything less than a sexual expression in the universal context and it river bring us peace? In Mary's second development stream, unfolds a different kind of marriage relationship. Mary had included no sexual references into her first development stream that pertains to the universal marriage of mankind. She has put her first sexual reference into her second development stream, which develops a different kind and advanced form of relationship with one another and with oneself. I think this is this stream that my friend Helen recognized must exist when she defined its essential nature in her own way as our universal kiss. I think Mary's second development stream pertains to the universal marriage of the human soul that unites us in our universal spiritual dimension, which of course is reflected in a universal physical dimension. Sex appears to be that dimension. Actually Mary has put down two references to sex and has put each one in a separate development stream. She thereby treats sex as a totally separate issue from the social dimension, form the Principle of the Universal Marriage of Mankind. I think sex, in its vast dimension, reflects the Principle of the Universal Marriage of our Humanity, the unity of the human soul. This means that we too, have to treat sex as a separate issue in our living, as a kind of spiritual manifest in a material Universe. I think this more deeply rooted unity of the spiritual and the corporeal that sex brings to light has a real down to earth practical social significance."
Indira raised her hand to interrupt me, but then let it drop.
She nodded, slightly. "Go on," she said moments later, "if you can explain this down to earth connection." She spoke more quietly and thoughtfully than she had spoken before.
I told her Erica's story. I told her how Erica had nearly been raped in Leipzig while she on the way to the streetcar coming from a late lecture at the university there. A man had followed her in the dark. He caught up with her and forced her into one of the university buildings. The man demanded sex. Erica decided that it would be safer for her to comply with what he wanted and have the sex with him, which he evidently needed badly, rather than risk a fight that she would most certainly loose. So, in response to that thought she kissed him, to take the pressure of the situation before it could become violent. This little thing that she did, this simple kiss, put the man over the edge. She felt that he literally exploded right into his pants. The attempt to rape ended right there. The man apologized profusely afterwards. He even asked her for a date. She refused. She told him that he looked like an intelligent person and should be perfectly able to develop a sexual relationship with someone on a more honorable basis. He replied to her that he had tried and tried, but had only found closed doors.
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from Chapter 5 of my novel: Glass Barriers