The Bushmen say , “Life is a dream dreaming us”.


Many use the metaphor of dream or illusion for our reality. This is not a nihilistic perspective.  It is an invitation to look beyond what is in front of us to recognise and connect with the mystery and wonder of life.


We experience the world in terms of our own personally constructed dreamscape.  The scientist, the artist, the child, the adult all have their own internal dreamscape that shapes their world.  This inner dreamscape creates the outer landscape we inhabit.


When we recognise this and work to recreate our dreamscape – life – the landscape changes for us.  We cannot enter the dreamscape rationally.  The shamanic journey is to suspend the rational – in the words of Carlos Castaneda “to stop the world” – and to enter into an alternative consciousness.  One of the ways to do this is dance, specifically trance dance.  This is where Biodanza touches the shamanic journey.  We use trance and regression to induce vivencia, letting go, suspending the rational to enter an alternative consciousness.  The shaman enters this space to negotiate and reorganise the world – to bring back healing and wisdom.  The Biodanceros enter vivencia to reorganise and renovate themselves.  However there is another aspect to consider.


How did we create the inner dreamscape in the first place? At a cosmic level we created the perfect experience for the purposes of this life.  The true shaman takes full responsibility for their world as it is now.  In practice our culture, our parents, our education and our religion are some of the things that shaped the dreamscape and when we are not conscious of this it becomes a self imposed prison – call it the Ego.  The shaman uses nature as the gateway between these worlds of the inner and outer.  Deep connection and reverence to nature maybe because there it is possible to find the place before culture – the world of instincts.  In Biodanza we talk about protovivencias, the place before.  We use dances and ceremonies of the four elements (nature) and archetypes to access the world before.  Shamans use archetypes which manifest in different forms in different cultures.


Our journey is not to engage with these cultural forms.  Our journey is to distil the essence of the shamanic journey – it’s a meta-journey.  And so we enter the dance.  Not the dance of forms and conscious movement but the spontaneous dance which comes from the soul.  The dance of the soul which yearns to navigate through the dreamscape and arrive in a new landscape of mystery and wonder.  Note – ‘navigate’ not ‘engage and change’.  But that is another discussion.

by Christos Daskalakos


Vivencia - Vivencia is “an experience lived with great intensity by an individual in the here-now covering the emotional, kinaesthetic, and organic functions.”  (Rolando Toro Araneda, 1968)

Definition of Biodanza - " Biodanza is a human integration system of organic renewal, of affective re-education, and of re-learning of the original functions of life..."