Min Tanaka‘s decades-long research on the relationship between the body-mind and its surroundings in dance inspires this post. Finding any information about this work that leads directly to him is complicated. Most of it is taught and spread worldwide by his students, dancers, and fellow researchers in the legendary Maijuku performance-dance company.
Body weather is based, among other things, on the idea that our body changes daily like the weather. Our body-mind has its moods and climate to be explored ad infinitum. Or until we die. In any case, it is definitely an infinite game, which is what is fascinating about it.
It is based on listening, being in the moment, and letting the body express its current state from moment to moment, ever-evolving.
There’s also a search for truth in there.
My point is that Tanaka Min and his Body Weather research are an inspiration for this post, but life too.
Life is a dance, it is an improvised dance from one moment to the next. When I teach Butoh, which is quite rare these days, I speak about “every millimeter” of the movement having its meaning.
We need to be able to give way to the possibility of an unexpected change.
It is a delicate, tender, and high level of body-mind communication.
Our life dance expresses the energy of our life through space and time. It has no fixed movement forms or counting. It is an evolving natural movement that leads the way.
I woke up tonight from a pain in my teeth. It hasn’t happened since 2018, which is quite a long time. So my mind was worried. I didn’t sleep very well after that.
Yesterday evening before I went to bed, a strange earache started too, which is weird because I never have earaches…
So, I woke up this morning in a strange mood. Some inflammation compromised my optimal performance I wasn’t aware of. This rarely happens to me. My body was trying to say something.
Listening to it, I relaxed and took a nap at noon. I stopped to think about my own research.
Optimal performance is a moving, shape-changing aspect of our being. Listening to it is vital. It can stop us in our tracks and have us think again, which is often not a bad idea.
My body put the boundary for me today. Sometimes it’s wiser than my mind 🙂
It then led to this research of Min Tanaka, his students, and the research he is still conducting while dancing… I was happy to realize he was still there, dancing so beautifully.