3 Non-space, non-time of Butoh
Sinking into the darkness of the body
Now we will go down into the dimension of Butoh.
Hijikata found the way into the special dimension of Butoh fifty years
ago. At that time, only he could enter this dimension.
Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung named it "unconsciousness." Now this
word is almost dead, since so many people have interpreted it in different
ways. A. Mindell uses the word "secondary process." S. Nakazawa
uses the word "fluid intelligence." I call it the "darkness
of the body," like Hijikata.
But now, using the Subbody Butoh Menthod, we can all enter the world in
which Butoh spirits are waiting for you.
The world of Butoh is not the consensus reality.
The consensus reality is a kind of shared illusion. Since most people are
trained in school to believe it, nobody doubts it. We were not taught that
another reality might exist, neither were we taught how to doubt the consensus
It is like all of us are under hypnosis.
When we wake up from the hypnosis of consensus reality, another reality
will open before us.
Butoh exists in another world of non-space and non-time.
In that world, the living and the dead, the human and the animal, can all
exchange with each other. All qualia is floating freely, shifting shapes
within this multi-dimensional world.
Where is this world?
You enter this world every night in your dreams.
The dream is a sub-signal from the multi-dimensional world of qualia.
In the darkness of the body, many hobgoblins and monsters are locked away
in tiny cages, crying.
Everybody who has grown up as a human has these places of hobgoblins in
the darkness of their bodies.
These hobgoblins are treated as monsters and locked up. But are they really
Are they not just the buds of new possibilities for humans?
They are treated as monsters by Reason, since they do not work well in
the productive system.
Many buds of new possibilities are locked up and crushed in the darkness
of the body.
I call it "subbody."
Now is the time to release our subbody. Can't you feel the squirming of
the subbody trying to come out?
How can we go into the subbody's world?
This world is folded in a tiny and subtle dimension.
Into the subtle
First, we need to stop daily consciousness.
If you want to communicate with your subbody, the only possibility is to
follow its movement with your whole body and mind.
Consciousness needs so much brain energy; we cannot notice the subtle world
if it is masked by the higher energy of consciousness.
When you bring down your level of consciousness through breathing, meditation,
and so on, you can contact the subtle world of qualia flow.
The subbody is hiding in the tiny signals of the qualia flow, like a momentary
quivering, swaying, flirting.
If you amplify the tiny signal of the subbody with your whole body and
mind, the tiny signal will grow into your own Subbody Butoh.
Try to ask the subbody, "Why can't you come out?"
The subbody cannot speak, since it was born and immediately locked up before
it could learn language.
By folowing the subbody, you can understand what it wants to become, where
it wants to move.
This place is swaying between life and death, between being and nothingness.
Every tragic event and extraordinary thing is folded in the tiny sway of
Butoh unfolds this kind of special dimension.
Stand as an ash pole body, as if your physical body and mind have burned
out. You are just a swaying ash pole.
Hijikata often said that Butoh is a dead body standing for dear life.
Ash walking is one of the most basic Butoh practices. Repeat it several
times a day.
An ash pole is very delicate; if you move with a daily size movement, the
ash pole will immediately collapse. You have to carry the ash pole as quietly
and slowly as possible.
In the tiny space within ash particles, many other tiny dimensions are
Here you can catch the sub-signals of your subbody.
Nests of Butoh
We do not know what kind of monsters or hobgoblins are waiting to come
out. We can only concentrate on listening to the subtle sub-signals.
You will notice that there are many sub-signals in the swaying of your
They are desperately trying to come out, but can't. All of the buds or
seeds of other dimensions are trying to open and come out, but their trials
Unknown creatures from other dimensions, spirits, demons, nightmares, and
so on, want to come out from the tiny buds within the particles of ash.
Carrying the ash body, which is full of buds or eggs of other dimensions,
is "Nests of Butoh" walk.
In 1974, Hijikata showed this walk in his last and deepest Butoh performance.
It had almost no movement, no evolution, but some part of his body seemed
to shift into another dimension and come back with subtle swaying.
He invented a special technique to control the body in a very delicate
and fragile way.
Never develop to daily size movement. Let the subtle signals move like
Practice this ash walk and the nests of Butoh walk several times each day.
This is the entrance into the Butoh world.