We breathe the breath of Unity together with sacred phrase and intention in order to dive below the surface of the mind and into the depth of the Heart.
The Dances of Universal Peace are not about entertainment, but entrainment: cultivating awareness of living in rhythm, in harmony, with others and with all beings. At the same time, we are attuning to the Infinite, the Source of all.
Research shows that children who sing the songs of other cultures become less inclined toward prejudice. Singing and dancing together requires us to operate beyond the sense of self-only, as we create the Dances together, in unity. The Dances of Universal Peace provide a way to interact and develop empathy with others in a way that does not require talking, just singing and moving. Come see for yourself!
~ TESTIMONIALS ~
Next to experiencing the Dances directly, nothing speaks more to the beauty of this practice than the voices of those who have participated in our local, Phoenix-area circles.
These generous comments represent the feelings of those who have participated and speak more about the Dances of Universal Peace than about any particular Dance leader (as some of these comments might suggest):
"My heart is vibrating with love and gratitude. What a special evening!"
"Another beautiful evening of The Dances! There was so much Love and Peace in that space tonight! Thank you, and Parvati too...for all that you give - for bringing us all together in this most beautiful way - our hearts all connected - one with the other! So moving, so powerful!"
"Thank you. My heart feels open, much more awakened. Lighter."
"Such sweet and love filled energy. So very grateful to have danced and shared in such exquisite unity."
"I had a great time and lots of joy from learning something new: sufis' songs and dances. There was electricity running thru my fingers every time a dance and song came to the end! Beautiful people!"
"Magical, mystical, memorable! Deep gratitude for a meaningful and heart-warming evening. Blessed be!"
"I have been singing the Om Shanti song everyday and many times throughout the
days since last we joined our voices and hearts in unison. Thank you for that
"Thank you, Shivadam, for this event. I'm sure all who participated found it as uplifting as I did. The universal language of music and the way you guided the process to affirm the value of all participants focused attention on our human commonalities rather than any cultural differences."
"Many thanks to you for another beautiful evening of Dances! All the love, care, and thought you put into each of these evenings is so evident! It is always a joy to be with you and with everyone who comes."
"I'm sending my heartfelt thank you for last evening! The Dances and songs were
so beautiful and so very meaningful in many ways. The time, and thought, and
love that you pour abundantly into preparation for each and every evening of
Dances is very evident and greatly appreciated! Even though there were only a
few of us physically present last evening, I do believe that your love and
compassion and the love and compassion from the hearts of each of us present
with you radiates out into the World, into the Universe in ways we cannot even
begin to fully imagine or comprehend!"
"I am so happy I danced tonight. I needed to feel the love of my sisters and brothers in the universe. I am looking forward to the next time. Thank you for organizing this meetup. It truly touched my heart. On a side note, I always thought I was a terrible singer, but tonight I felt like my voice was pure and filled with love."
"Love, laughter and tears shared with beautiful souls...pure joy."
"I so love DUP, it speaks to my soul, I feel like I'm home!"
"Love the integration of movement and music as a spiritual practice."
"DUP is so good for my heart. I have been dancing with Shivadam at SWIHA for about a year now and it has changed my life."
"These dances have helped me to feel the connection we have between all people. Being able to look into the eyes of people I didn't know and see the divine within them has assisted my growth."
"Thank you all for being so loving and fun! Last night was amazing and what a wonderful group to pray with! I can hardly wait until the next one! Shivadam thank you for creating such a beautiful space!"
"It was great to have the oppportunity to share with all of you, praying and meditating! It was nice to experience new songs and dances. All that is good for the spirit! Hope to see you soon!"
"I find dancing with the truths of love, harmony, and beauty deeply nourishing and inspiring. There is no better way to be with people and to know yourself! Thank you all. I felt so full of joy and gratitude as I went home after the dance."
"Thank you all for a lovely evening. I felt warmly welcomed and a strong sense of belonging."
"The dances were an awesome experience."
"Wonderful leader and circle of dancers. Co-creation of a really sweet space. Shivadam thank you for sharing the practices with us and for the warm welcome that you and Parvati extend. It was a really lovely evening. Feeling blessed that I've landed in the circle with all of you."
"Thanks for the meetup last night - I really enjoyed it. It did push some boundaries for me but in a good way. I haven't done sacred chanting in probably 20 years, and as a dancer it was really fascinating to experience the feeling of combining the two! Thank you for the experience - I intend to make future meetings as I am so moved."
"It was a heart opening experience!!!!"
"I cried a few tears while dancing...thanks!”
"How beautifully Shivadam brought and shared all the 'different' traditions for us to experience and embody. Dancing and singing with such a lovely circle - and feeling the gifts that each person brought - further enhanced the knowing that love is love the world around. Thank you all!"
"Heart expanding. Beautiful dance, connected."
"Thanks to all, especially Shivadam, for a lovely, transformative evening. Such a beautiful community!"
"My heart soars and Joy flows. Thank you for embracing this and sharing with all of us."
"It was such a wonderful and heartfelt experience tonight! A lovely meeting of open hearts who tuned so beautifully together. We will definitely be back."
"What a lovely experience. I am so grateful for all of the love that goes into this event. Such beautiful energy is shared, the music is lovely and Shivadam's instruction and guidance is perfect for opening up to this healing and connecting practice."
"It was such a wonderful experience being with you and the whole group. I will
do my best to attend the next dance meeting in the Valley. I feel my greatest
purpose in this lifetime is to do my little part for peace-making. The energy
in the sanctuary was heavenly, your music, song and sharing very special to me."
"Rahmana creates and holds a remarkably beautiful container and context for the celebration of zikr. What an embodiment of the Divine!”
"Heart opening, loving experience. Hosted by authentic beautiful souls."
"Shivadam and Parvati, thank you so much for coming up to the school and teaching the Girl Scouts the dances. That brought me such joy to see the kids smiling and laughing and having fun doing them! And the teachings were perfect too. You are both so great with kids. I appreciate you!"
"Another beautiful evening circling, singing, dancing, and connecting. So grateful to have found this group!"
"Thanks for another wonderful evening of Love and Light and sharing peace for the world's sake! Our Peace spreads out far and wide!"
“Circles like those formed by the Dances of Universal Peace are a manifestation of the One, singing to itself about itself or in the spirit of itself, practicing to better remember itself to not get so lost in itself.”
"Very peaceful chanting while circling slowly in a small group. A nice, pleasant, heart-centered experience with good-hearted folk. Thank you, Gaile. Thank you, All."
"Magical, loving and heart expanding. So grateful for these gatherings."
"I just feel so good when I join you all. :)"
"Shivadam is masterful in leading the dances... so welcoming to all, he holds the space with kindness and his easeful direction makes it comfortable for a newcomer to fully participate and enjoy!"
"The buddhas surely do sing and dance.
To sing and dance is surely profound practice.
By practicing profound song and dance,
We reach enlightenment - how amazing!"
- Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche
Sung spontaneously at Tek Chok Ling Nunnery, Kathmandu, Nepal, July 2009.
Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Spiritual Director of the Maitreya Project, once said [about the] Dances of Universal Peace...as he sat in the center of the circle:
"Never under estimate the power of what you are doing with these songs and dances. Our air waves are polluted and these sacred chants help to purify the atmosphere for all beings. I will make strong prayers for you to continue your work."
And so it is, with all of our best intentions, the blessings of the Dance work is dedicated for all beings everywhere without exception. - Anahata Iradah, Senior Dance Mentor.
Why have the Dances of Universal Peace been called "Sufi Dancing"? (Visit this site to learn more...)
Explore Some Helpful Tips for Dancers, Beginners and Experienced
NEWLY UPDATED: A Glossary of Sacred Phrases (.pdf)
More info and resources at Dances of Universal Peace North America
and Dances of Universal Peace International