The Gift of Curiosity
27 Sept, 2018
Sitting at Santos cafe in Mullumbimby with my laptop, I have a moment of reflection. I take a breath and notice my surrounds. An electric guitar plays on the corner as a baby is gently rocked in the pram next to me. Two men have a heated conversation about the pain of break-ups, struggling to find connection through a minefield of triggers. One offers advice for support and the other rejects his choice of words. It's as if their personal etymological understandings create separate languages with which they battle to force into discourse. It ends in a sideways shoulder hug just as the baby's eyebrows turn red on the brink of tears. Everything is happening faster than I can type, and it is already in the past by the time my finger hits the keyboard.
My battery warning comes up and I wonder where the nearest power supply is. The rustle of money, the sound of coffee grinding, the friendly reminder to plug in.
It is in these moments where I enjoy letting my curiosity wander. There is nothing to do but sit and watch the world pass by, zooming out to see the larger dance of this revolving planet. Colour seems brighter, sounds clearer and smells are stronger as I take my "omnisensory sweep".
Last week was the first Moving Connections session in Toowoomba, and what I received from that delightful group of humans was curiosity. It was a true gift to have a group full of people with no expectations or previous experience with the work; a genuine curiosity about what will unfold. Together we made discoveries, experienced the room in a whole new way, and created many different landscapes of beauty and sound. I had emptied my mind of expectations, reviewed my tool bag of teaching techniques and exercises, and let the day shape itself into a gentle flow of wonder.
The more comfortable I get with my own not-knowing, the more I can see my own limitations. The less I try to be something I am not, the more I can be fully present with what is, asking questions and wondering. I wonder if those men who were sitting over there moments ago would still be there if they sat in the unknown together, being curious about their feelings of hurt and distrust. I wonder, if they gifted each other their curiosity, would their connection have been more fulfilling in that moment? Would they have learnt something new instead of confirming their existing beliefs?
On the dance floor, we ask questions. We structure these questions with material far beyond our ordinary vocabulary list. We sense fully with our whole selves and move into a living inquiry - using everything available to us in the moment.
This weekend I will be diving into an inquiry of the Heart in a dance workshop. I will be bringing the gift of curiosity with me to the work, knowing that it will serve the facilitator and the other dancers as much as it serves my self. I am curious to see what will arise for me after a tumultuous two years and await the weekend with excited anticipation. I am looking forward to deepening my dance to offer back to the community.
I wonder if you have heard of this song by Marshall Rosenberg?
"Green Jell-O Song" by Marshall Rosenberg
(lyrics written by children from his classes)
I wonder why my dog won't eat green Jell-O
I like the wiggly way it melts inside
I wonder when a turtle pulls its head in
is it so dark it's scared to be inside
I wonder if a rock likes being hard
I wonder if the sky likes being blue
I wonder if butterflies like butter
I wonder if you like being you
I wonder why I don't feel myself stretching
When people say I'm growing every day
I wonder why I always have to listen
To more words than I ever get to say
I wonder if the grass cries when it's cut
I wonder if the rain hurts when it falls
I wonder if the Earth gets dizzy turning
I wonder if little worms feel small
I wonder why I see so many people
Do things that they don't really want to do
I wonder if the music goes away somewhere
After I sing my song to you
I wonder if it feels sad to be old
I wonder if the moon likes company
I wonder why it's fun to feel a little scared
I wonder if you wonder like me too
Photo credit: Ian Fergusen, ACIC retreat, Lennox Heads 2018