Transforming Conflict: Martha Eddy responds

Martha Eddy is a Dynamic Embodiment practitioner - a somatic discipline she created and first taught at Earthdance in 1992! DE blends two amazing Somatic Movement Systems - BodyMind Centering and Laban/Bartenieff Studies.

Question for Martha:
How can the body and movement address conflict-- especially due to the lack directness around movement as a modality to enact change in our daily lives?
 
Martha Responds:
I am really drawn to the wondering about "Can the body and movement address conflict?" AND the idea that movement has not been experienced as a direct way to enact change. 

I enrolled to be a person training school leaders in Conflict Resolution when  I was already a dancer and somatic educator.

I always felt something was missing when I taught conflict resolution through discussion and role plays.  Indeed that is what led me to research whether any conflict resolution was being taught in school gyms, dance studios, auditoriums and hallways.  It took over a year but I discovered there was! I found amazing people across the nation in LA, Oakland, Chicago, Newton and NYC leading dialogues and creative conflict transformation within the context of making dances, writing and performing theatre, coaching basketball, practicing martial arts, and even enacting Dr Suess within social studies class - remember the Sneetches?

MOVEMENT and the Body is where conflict is held, expressed, and communicated.  It is our belief at Moving On Center that conflict is most easily and effectively transformed (in peaceable and healthy ways) when there is a full engagement through the body - from paying attention to body cues as they arise, to being aware of body positioning and body language during conflict, to dancing out ideas or walking across a picket line, or standing up for what you believe in to solve a conflict or "fight" injustice. 

We can be politically active and not be aware of our bodies.  This may get stuff done but it can lead to ill-health and even ill-will if "old stuff" festering words, mean glances arent also addressed. Somatic Movement understands and works with the body through movement to TAKE ACTION. I even gave this a name "SOMaction".  We carry this to world of environmental justic when we take on EcoSomaction and outgrowth of a term I helped dub  around the time of the ED SEEDS festival in 2008 - 2010.  "EcoSomatics" is a great way to experience how the body and movement can work for change.  Check out www.GlobalWaterDances.org as one more performance based way to make a statement about the need for clean and safe water for all around the planet.  For more resources check out www.EmbodyPeace.org   Come add to this investigation.  Earthdance is a perfect place to take on issues of depth. 

Martha Eddy will be facilitating a workshop at Earthdance from April 20-21st. There are still spaces for participation! Visit our webpage for more information!

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