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The Butoh  Part 3

Sick Dancing Princess


Chapter 305

Shrink and Attentiveness

Because, shrink and attentiveness of old man who knew the useless of body have been wandering about me.

Also a boy of me suddenly became stupid without intension, I was kept like a strange brightness but only just barely alive.

There is put the most important essence of the book in this sentence. 

The old men who knew the uselessness of the body is the weakened body itself which is the essence of Butoh.

In this book, Hijikata did not use the word, "Weakened body" yet. But, through whole book, he researched in infinite variations of weakened body.

Through the creative activity in the 70's and this investigation, he could established the method which is the weakened body is "the prototype meter of Butoh".

He said as the following in a Lecture 1986.

"Though there is a "Health fantasy" in our society, we should not run together in the direction of such as fantastic health, I have worked hard to measure the illusion of health with weakened my body. This is why I was working hard and I think I'll make a perverse "prototype of meter" like this.

This is not such as <Okina=Old man in Noh dance> in the classical Japanese tradition.

Rather, I needed much more extreme weakened body for my butoh.

(A lecture "Butoh pilgrimage" 1984)

Healthy body and mind is useful in society, and our body-brain-mind have to be taken to the labor and consumption. We cannot see except of gross and rough things what is needed for the daily life.

If we are not released from the illusion, we cannot notice the delicate shrink and shivering of Life.

This was an awakening that prompted the conversion of Hijikata Butoh that noticed the limitations of the famous performance of "Rebellion of body" in 1968.

After the performance he retreat a couple of years apart from others, and continued to meditate about what was the limitation of his previous dynamic butoh performance by alone.

One day, Hijikata's dead sister whispered to him a suggestion, he talked in another lecture.

" I am letting live my dead sister in my darkness of body, and she said to me.

"You are working hard to dance, and to express something, but it must appear by not intend to express something, isn't it?" she said softly and faded away. That's why the shisha (=dead) is my butoh teacher."

(Lecture "Wind Dharma" 1985)

"As long as you are caught in the illusion of healthy humans, you try to express yourself hard. But it does not reach the Life, also I cannot receive it." She told him so.

After the awakening, he had seal the dynamic and aggressive dancing such as  "Rebellion of body", and had changed to the weakened body butoh,1970s.

He wished to resonate with Life even with his dead sister.

What is the Butoh which travels from Life to Life?

Once again, let's re-read the opening statement by your body.

"Shrink and attentiveness of the old men who knew the useless of body had been wandering about me.

Also a boy of me suddenly became stupid without intention. I was kept like a strange brightness but only just barely alive."

The weakened body which he grasped as the prototype of meter of butoh, is the old men who knew the uselessness of body.

The resonance of the boy Hijikata without any doubt to the shrink and attentive of old men and became the Life which is just alive is, too.

He and the old men were muddled and unified as oneness with resonance with the invisible behind world which everything is transforming and circulating in invisible realm.

 Here, let's try to resonate with it through the body. 
It means to read the sentence as a butoh score. 
It would be to apply the prototype meter of the weakened body to your body.


 Reading by body

Life was born in the high temperature region of the sea floor around hydrothermal vents 4 billion years ago.

Life spent billions of years under the original condition.  

Shrink and Attentive movement of primitive Life

1. Start walking as an ash body. All of your body becomes useless, become a being just alive without intension.

2. Upstream the Life history by one step and step until the primordial Life which was born four billion years ago.

3. Feel the world around the primordial Life. All of It is unknown dead world which Life did not know the proper way of resonance yet.

4. Various part of body starts shrinking and shivering against unknown qualia. 

5. Slowly spread your attentive against unknown world around you and feel the response of Life through subtle shrinking and shivering.

6. When you leave from the warm zone, taste the cold qualia as danger of death with shrinking and shivering.

7. Sometimes unknown things approach you, feel them with fear and shrinking, shivering.

8. Sometimes you are moved by the ocean wave apart from comfortable warm zone, with shrinking and attentive.

9. When you are going away from the colony of living cells, what qualia do you feel?

10. Travel in the unknown world as the primordial Life for twenty minutes with following the spontaneous response of Life.


Read more about Primordial Life, Crick here

To read about "What is Life?" Crick here.

To read about "What is Qualia?" Crick here.

To read about "What is Resonance?" Crick here.

Read more "The Butoh"

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