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A Brief Description of the Discipline of Authentic Movement

by Janet Adler

Authentic Movement, compassionate witnessing of movement becoming conscious, is a process grounded in the relationship between a mover and a witness. Different teachers of Authentic Movement offer their evolving perspectives in unique and diverse ways. The Discipline of Authentic Movement, a mystical practice centered in the development of embodied witness consciousness, is one way in this growing field of exploration.

For both the mover and the witness, work is concentrated in the development of the inner witness, which is one way of understanding the development of consciousness. In this discipline the inner witness is externalized, embodied by a person who is called the outer witness. Another person, called the mover, embodies the moving self. After moving, the mover speaks her experience, the outer witness listens and then speaks her experience of the movement. In this way language bridges experience from body to consciousness. For both mover and witness the intention toward the practice of thoughtful speech is central to the development of the discipline.

In the early years of the practice, personal, egoic work is based within the individual body, work that deepens empathic resonance. The process begins with the ground form, which is continuing practice in evolving roles for the mover, entered in the presence of an outer witness. An individual commits first as a mover, then a moving witness, and then a silent witness. As each role integrates enough, she embodies the next one. When she is ready, she chooses the great responsibility of becoming a speaking witness, first with one mover, then with more.

As her practice matures, she participates in a collective body of movers and witnesses. Because of the unfolding awareness of the mover’s inner witness, when it is time, her practice guides her toward experience of an integral witness, one who witnesses, listens, and responds by speaking consciously from multiple perspectives. In moments of grace, she is an empty mover – empty witness. As the work evolves, direct experience of energetic phenomenon becomes intuitive knowing. Authentic compassion, compassion that cannot be willed, deepens her presence.

Being seen, seeing oneself, seeing another, movers and witnesses move closer to their true nature because of the development of witness consciousness. With increasing trust in themselves and in the discipline, through this mysterious developmental but non-linear process of enduring commitment, individuals can journey from the experience of duality to unity consciousness.

For a more detailed description, please reference on this website:
The Mandorla and the Discipline of Authentic Movement
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