From our Peace Dancer, Khalilah Ramirez. Join her and others for the weekly Dance of Peace class at the Center on Fridays from 10 to 11 am. You can find her writings on Silicon Valley De-Bug's website
Greetings to all who are reading! This Week In Peace welcomes all, striving to be an example of amplified life. It’s what each person strives for. What each of us is born for, to prosper in life by learning to live in more effective ways. There are countless methods for this. The one we’re touching on today is the element of play.
Recently, I declared an allotted time (11am-1pm) to be “playtime.” Playtime is a sanctioned period when I allow myself to play, to experiment, to bend the “rules” and break routines as needed. The Dance of Peace is a major component of playtime because the spirit of dance is one of lightheartedness. Dance brings a sense of beauty, fun and freedom that lends itself to expansion.
I decided to travel light so that I could ride my bike instead of driving. Feeling the breeze soothes the mind, body and spirit. The first stop was in Japantown at 5th and Jackson. Numerous families were out enjoying the day. I stooped near the ground to link the speakers for dance. A lady came over to me saying, “Oh! I wanted to make sure you were ok! You were crouched down, I thought you might need help.” She was sincere and loving in her concern for a total stranger. We had a hearty laugh about it and hugged. Her hug filled me with hope and glee! It elevated the dance to an even higher vibration. The neighborhood responded beautifully to this, sending gratitude and friendliness from all directions. Thank you!
Next, my adventure led me to St. Joseph’s Cathedral – an iconic building in downtown San José. To My surprise I saw a guitar player busking in front of the gift shop. It’s a friend from ages ago, who performed frequently back when the Dance of Peace first took to the streets in 2008. After greeting him he asks, “Do you sing?”
“No, but it’s one of my future dreams.”
“Anyone can sing, you know! You just have to find the key that’s right for you. Everyone has a perfect key. Music is magic that way.”
Music IS deeply magical! Though invisible, it has restorative powers that profoundly affect our brains and bodies. In the blink of an eye, he convinced me that anyone can sing. I belted out a melody, a song of hope and freedom. His eyes filled with wonder and laughter. I knew it was a classic case of Source touching us because impromptu public singing performance wasn’t anywhere on my agenda. Spontaneous! That’s what playtime is about.
Lastly, I stopped at San Pedro Square. The outside area has a seldom used stage. I parked my bike near it and commenced dancing. There were children on and around the stage. As soon as they heard music, they engaged. I encouraged their energetic moves! We enjoyed ourselves!
Moments later, yellow shirt security says: “Ma’am can you move your bike?”
I did. Five minutes pass. Red shirt security comes and says: “Ma’am can you remove your shoes from the stage?” I place my shoes on the ground. Blue shirt security arrives, agitated: “Ma’am, get down from there right now! You can’t dance here! You need permission!” I had given myself permission earlier that day so I knew I was in the clear. I tell him, “Yes, I’m finishing up now, thank you!” The song we were using had less than 60 seconds left. Within that time frame, black security shirt showed up. No greeting.
Blue shirt and black shirt hover as I put my shoes on. The Dance of Peace constantly seeks harmony, so it interests me that so many security levels had been activated by my presence. I ask them, “You guys came over just for me?” One says yes, the other says no. Amusing! A slight showdown followed when they insisted that I leave through the back gate. They pressed in around my bike, blocking my way. I sensed their stress and tension. Wishing them well, I left, slightly peeved.
Why is this dance such a threat? I huffed inwardly. Just as I thought this, a man walked directly in front of me. In large letters, his shirt read, “LOVE UNCONDITIONALLY.” That message seemed like Divine timing. I accepted it immediately. It allowed me to laugh at myself, and my silly indignation. I sent the guards love and goodwill. I rode home without a care, hoping that the dance (though a security threat) touched someone in a positive way. That was the true story of one person’s playtime. Now go create your own. Give yourself time to play. Have fun, let yourself do whatever you please for a while! Practice joy by not taking any of it seriously! Observe what happens and share. Thanks and see you out there!