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RHYTHM BETWEEN WORLDS  
The Language of Dance, Music, Nature


excerpt:

Rhythm is a language of our heartbeat. It belongs to our perceptions and senses, to our emotions
as well as all elements and forces in nature. Our bodies hold the keys in relation to rhythmic
knowledge. Every aspect of nature seems to provide a cascade of rhythmic patterns, an energetic
unfolding of forces that determine future actions, the motion a thing will make, the paths it will
take. All this unfolds in a language of rhythm as rhythms determine the shape of these tendencies
and what they will become. We sense this as movement or as energetic pulsations. We can benefit
by looking closer to comprehend the language these forces speak, learning to handle the essential
elements that rhythms deliver. Let’s expand this a little further.

There are abundant signposts pointing to the often hidden rhythmic structures in nature. When
drawing parallels between arts, modern technology, quantum sciences, or historic philosophies in
ancient traditions, today many are keen to point out  symmetrical aspects and patterns found in
the natural world. Symmetrical factors are often seen as a mark of special relationships where
simple and complex rhythms unfold and interact with one another as types of creation-logic.
Symmetry infers the presence of numbers and rhythms, and points directly to deep structural
patterns and principles found in artistic practices from older cultures. I think there may be some
benefit in investigating rhythm and symmetry in diverse practices or forms such as in music,
language, arts, biology, sciences, etc, that could allow us to make a more thorough study of it’s
principles and practice. But how might we begin this enormous task?

Dance was something I thought I left behind as a child, yet entering the training centre of London
Contemporary Dance Theatre, I discovered a type of body language, the way that rhythm is used
in movement expression. I found parallels that led directly to the heart of music. Asked if I might
like to lecture on music and dance, I designed a course exploring rhythmic principles, examining
how rhythm functions in the arts, and in nature. Students found ways to explore how rhythm is
expressed in the world around us, how it enables creativity and enhances imagination. I was
fortunate discovering new ways to work with others.

In the 21st century we are seeing the emergence of a generation of heightened musical talent,
and with it the capabilities of young musicians are soaring. Something is happening in the way
consciousness has grasped ahold of matter. There is a new possession that seems to be allowing
doorways of learning to open as never before. What was previously seen as the gifts or
accomplishments of a few unique individuals, often a struggle to accomplish, has now become
rapidly assimilated learning models for new generations of talent. It is a remarkable development.
Access to these richer veins of expression has brought a penetration into deeper structural
territories of music. Appearing in all forms of music, we are now seeing music rhythms linked with
accelerated speeds, reinforcing a new virtuosity of how music can be performed.

Throughout most cultures, and over a long period of time, there has been continual interests to
explore the structure of rhythm, especially as it is used in music and dance. India, Africa, South
and East Asia, all have complex, highly evolved understandings of rhythm structure.  Western
music has evolved from these traditions and cultures yet sometimes in ways we have forgotten. In
music, the early  configurations of three and four beats are astounding rich in the possibilities of
division and subdivision, territories that quickly become exquisite game grounds for invention. And
it is here that we lull ourselves to sleep. At times we take our eyes off the ball, becoming
complacent about discovering the adventure-horizons in rhythm.  There still are forests out there,
but we seem to be busy cutting down the trees.

We must realise that rhythmic knowledge and its application to the arts, to medicine, sciences,
cosmology is a vast territory with huge potentials for creative engagement, but it is equally
important to consider that rhythm belongs to a larger field beyond the arts, for rhythms describe
the very fundamentals of nature, both its structures and its methods of transformation and
motion. Therefore, rhythm as a component of nature must include human biology and the
structure of the mind itself.

We owe a lot to nature. Perhaps we owe everything, so there is little reason to diminish the role it
has played, the vast intelligence it exerts in bringing forth living matter, the seasons and
therefore, the structures nature provides for matter to assemble itself and flourish in. All this
occurs in pulsating fields of energy. The breath of nature is a rhythmic dynamic, involved in every
aspect of life, from  formations of crystals to the flow of water and wind, to the beating of the
human heart.


Michio Kaku:
“For scientists the language of nature is mathematics. Without mathematics, we can only be
passive observers to the dance of nature rather than active participants.”
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Long Term projects
News      Future Release      Vinyl      Book    
Rhythm Between Worlds - a practical guide oriented toward musicians and dancers, as well as  for  
many others who have an interest in rhythm.

Rhythm can seem indirect, a result of the actions of other things, but what if it is a first cause? A first
principle, the reason a heart beats? This book relates a fleet of concepts and ideas about the benefits
of looking at impulses and rhythms of things we create, opening the doors of perception to see inside
the connectedness of things, understand relationships that come into play when the first beat splits
into many.

Like the quest of Einstein, many artists are in search of a unified field to express their ideas. Galileo
mentioned:

“The universe cannot be read until we have learned the language and become familiar with the
characters in which it is written. It is written in mathematical language, and the letters are triangles,
circles and other geometrical figures, without which it is humanly impossible to understand a single
word.”

To my mind it is the same not only for music but for everything we do or make. Intuitively we read
our universe. It may be time to become more conscious of the process.
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