Movement is Life.

May 1, 2009

Everything that lives moves (itself) – one way or another. Even that which is not alive is still essentially a form of energy – vibrating at a particular frequency, or rhythm. That which we call alive moves (with or for a purpose) in many ways and to many rhythms. To cease all movement is to cease to be alive. We may pause, but if we stop any movement for too long, we die.

Living things are often classified after the way they move. Plants and trees move passively from side to side with the flow of water or air, while growing up (and down). We call most non-rooted beings animals. Most of those that swim we call fish. Most of those that fly we call birds. Most of those that slither and glide we call snakes. Most of those that wiggle we call worms. We have other names for animals that jump, hop, bound, crawl, walk, and move by other means. Many animals have multiple legs. We, like birds, walk upright on only two. We can also swim. But we cannot fly. If we could do all three, we would probably call ourselves ducks, rather than humans.

Rocks roll, but they are not alive. To be considered alive, movement must not only be external – for locomotion and relocation – but also internal. A thing is alive if it has a boundary separating it from the rest of the world, if it can reproduce itself, if it can maintain itself (i.e., draw energy from outside its boundary), and if it can preserve itself. None of these functions can occur without self-directed movement.

Our body is meant for movement – and how we move (or don’t) indicates the state and condition of our nervous system, its hereditary endowment, and its degree of development.

Our nervous system is primarily concerned with recovery of stability. Balance is not a static state and life is not a stable process. Life is a process of risk and recovery. Each step is a risk. The ability to recover (and to keep going and growing) may be our greatest quality.

Movement, whether internal or external, may be either voluntary or automatic. The only conscious part of any intentional movement is the decision to make it. Music is a rhythmic sound that can move us physically and emotionally. Our brain may even entrain to the beat.

Dance is a way of expressing our body’s essential rhythms and being.

© 2009 – 2015, Oren Pardes. All rights reserved.

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