Remembering the Dance AND the Reason for It

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Dear friends,

          I don’t like the idea of defining myself by what I am not.  “Spiritual but not religious” is a term that is thrown around by people who still see religion as a set of rules and the “norm” of the masses. I don’t relate to the description at all. It feels dismissive of religion as a whole when in fact, it is the institutions and doctrines that aren’t working, not religion!

          People are religious about many things, even if they don’t go to church. They are religious about their workout at the gym, or their Sunday ritual of stopping at Dunkin’ Donuts. They are religious about saving money for retirement, or going to the same coffee place and ordering the same coffee drink, in taking the same daily route to work across the park or even about a daily meditation or journal writing.
 
          In that sense, religion just means faithful or committed to something. People need ritual, and we seek it out. It anchors us, it orients us, it touches a deeper part of ourselves that operates from the reptilian brain.

          People have fled religious denominations in droves, not because they don’t need ritual, or religion, but because a social construct that is frequently homophobic or ethnocentric or downright racist isn’t one in which they can find meaning.  And Meaning is the issue. People are still seeking deeper meaning, and inspiration, and connection to their Source and to other people. It is part of us. And the secular rituals, lecture series, meet up groups, and brunches that have replaced what people used to do in church, are not quite making it.

          This is why T.R.I.B.E. exists. It is an attempt to cultivate the universal language of ART into a spiritual AND religious but not institutional search for meaning, in a community context. You don’t have to speak the same language to cry at a piece of music together, or to consciously create a group art piece.  And taking a stand for the issues that matter requires us to discover a language of gathering that connects and unifies our world, not that divides it.

          T.R.I.B.E. is the place where we can connect the dots at the deepest level of our being, and it propels us to be purposeful in making significant contributions to our world. T.R.I.B.E. gives voice to the voiceless, rhythm to the week and healing for a world that has remembered the dance but forgotten the reason for it.  New York City is the place where big new ideas come to be made.  This is the moment for T.R.I.B.E. NYC is the place.  And as the songs tells us, If we can make it here, we can make it anywhere, and we will.
 
         This is the season of miracles; the time of year when we celebrate the most unlikely births, in the least expected conditions. But unlike those, some births will simply not take place without financial support and backing.
 
          Let us together, birth this thing called T.R.I.B.E.

          Happy winter solstice, inner time of renewal, lights inside on a green tree, baby in a manger, hope in a mystery, promise of renewed life more abundant.

          Send me an email, tell me what matters to you and what is waiting to be born, in you, as you, through you.

Religiously yours,
Remembering the reason…
Jane

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Singing For Our Lives

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Dear Friends,               

Madiba, Nelson Mandela, left the physical body on Dec. 5, 2013, and in so doing began a process of expanding his soul force through the ancestral realm, and into the hearts, and psyches of the world.  The transition of this spiritual giant continues to be observed in South Africa through traditional art, dance, music, drumming, through solemn processions and moments of silence, through a combination of tribal ritual and state honoring. At a concert, musicians, poets, children, and the grateful people of South Africa processed their own feelings and blessed Madiba, calling forth a collective courage for the next phase of life. The musicians from South Africa and around the world sang in a way that feels like singing to save their lives.                As long as Madiba was alive, there was a feeling of safety. The memory of apartheid’s brutal past is not yet far from the consciousness of many, however. The music is an incantation, a calling forth from the invisible of the collective power of the revolution. There is nothing frivolous about any of the performances or observances. It is all done with great deliberateness. It reminds us that ART is a path. ART leads us to the realm of the ancestors, to the Kingdom of G-d, to the river that sustains all life.                One young singer from a group named ‘Time for Africa’ sang: “Remember! There was a time when no one could speak. There was a time when only the brave would speak. We are one, all people are one, White, Black, Brown, we are one.” Another woman shared that she is feeling hurt by Madiba’s passing. She remembers being jailed with two young children at home because she did not have her “paper” one day.                 I heard an interview with Zeleni Mkiva, who served as Madiba’s “Praise Singer”, from the time he left prison until his transition. This young man blends fierce tribal dialect with English evocations of Spirit.  Dressed in tribal attire, he evoked the ancestors and cleared the energetic way for Nelson Mandela before he spoke. He accompanied Madiba to his inauguration, and many official gatherings. Madiba mentored him from a young age, as he did so many other artists.                Bono shared that Madiba told him, “If you don’t use your gifts to change the world I will haunt you.” It was funny, but he wasn’t kidding. Madiba knew that artists have the power to save the revolution. Art can be a path that connects us to the ancestral realm, to the deepest connection to our Source where we access the power to become healers of the world and transformers of consciousness.                  If you are interested in following any of the events in South Africa, you may tune in online to eNCA Live. None of this has been on American media. We have seen plenty of gossip and lots of filler “news”. But this coverage is life changing. I would like to encourage you to wonder why we cannot access it on American TV. Why are we being force fed a diet of junk food, when there is a truly transformational process for world peace and unity happening in real time?                This Sunday, we will have an amazing combination of dance, music and fine art, with a depth teaching on the topic of “Creating a container for the birth of consciousness.”  Please join us for our holiday gathering at 11 am at Raw Space Gallery 2031 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd, Harlem, NY.                “Let there be justice for all! Let there be peace for all. Let freedom ring.”  – Nelson Mandela   Yes Madiba. We hear your voice.  We sing your song. Our lives depend on it.   Ashé, Peace, Jane

Zolani Mkiva singing Mandela praises

Watch the Video

T.R.I.B.E.

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Dear Friends,
 
             Madiba, Nelson Mandela, left the physical body on Dec. 5, 2013, and in so doing began a process of expanding his soul force through the ancestral realm, and into the hearts, and psyches of the world.  The transition of this spiritual giant continues to be observed in South Africa through traditional art, dance, music, drumming, through solemn processions and moments of silence, through a combination of tribal ritual and state honoring. At a concert, musicians, poets, children, and the grateful people of South Africa processed their own feelings and blessed Madiba, calling forth a collective courage for the next phase of life. The musicians from South Africa and around the world sang in a way that feels like singing to save their lives.
 
             As long as Madiba was alive, there was a feeling of safety. The memory of apartheid’s brutal past is not yet far from the consciousness of many, however. The music is an incantation, a calling forth from the invisible of the collective power of the revolution. There is nothing frivolous about any of the performances or observances. It is all done with great deliberateness. It reminds us that ART is a path. ART leads us to the realm of the ancestors, to the Kingdom of G-d, to the river that sustains all life.
 
             One young singer from a group named ‘Time for Africa’ sang: “Remember! There was a time when no one could speak. There was a time when only the brave would speak. We are one, all people are one, White, Black, Brown, we are one.” Another woman shared that she is feeling hurt by Madiba’s passing. She remembers being jailed with two young children at home because she did not have her “paper” one day. 
 
             I heard an interview with Zeleni Mkiva, who served as Madiba’s “Praise Singer”, from the time he left prison until his transition. This young man blends fierce tribal dialect with English evocations of Spirit.  Dressed in tribal attire, he evoked the ancestors and cleared the energetic way for Nelson Mandela before he spoke. He accompanied Madiba to his inauguration, and many official gatherings. Madiba mentored him from a young age, as he did so many other artists.
 
             Bono shared that Madiba told him, “If you don’t use your gifts to change the world I will haunt you.” It was funny, but he wasn’t kidding. Madiba knew that artists have the power to save the revolution. Art can be a path that connects us to the ancestral realm, to the deepest connection to our Source where we access the power to become healers of the world and transformers of consciousness. 
 
              If you are interested in following any of the events in South Africa, you may tune in online to eNCA Live. None of this has been on American media. We have seen plenty of gossip and lots of filler “news”. But this coverage is life changing. I would like to encourage you to wonder why we cannot access it on American TV. Why are we being force fed a diet of junk food, when there is a truly transformational process for world peace and unity happening in real time?
 
             This Sunday, we will have an amazing combination of dance, music and fine art, with a depth teaching on the topic of “Creating a container for the birth of consciousness.”  Please join us for our holiday gathering at 11 am at Raw Space Gallery 2031 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd, Harlem, NY.
 
             “Let there be justice for all! Let there be peace for all. Let freedom ring.” 
– Nelson Mandela
 
Yes Madiba. We hear your voice. 
We sing your song.
Our lives depend on it.
 
Ashé,
Peace,
Jane

Zolani Mkiva singing Mandela praises

Watch the VideoImage