Madrona Day 5 - Tree Dance Teacher


I am immersed in a six day Teacher Training for a program called Soul Motion, which is a form of mindful movement dance. In essence, it is a dance form that inspires embodied awareness of the world and of self. The program starts at 7:30am and goes until 9pm, so it is challenging my twice a day vigil with the madrona. I have to go earlier and stay late. To be with the tree first thing in the morning and at twilight is becoming habitual and of an increasingly compelling nature as if the madrona is imparting a kind of energy or teaching to me that I can’t quite see yet.

While sitting at the tree this morning, a very clear feeling developed inside me: We are complimentary. Its feeling was that humans and trees are bonded together.

I walked back to the dance studio and prepared for our first session. Immediately after warm-up the teacher, Vin Arjuna Marti, had us look out the window and said, “You see her? You see her out there? She is our teacher.” He was pointing toward a large cottonwood tree that was swaying in the morning wind. I could hardly believe it and hadn’t mentioned a word of our campaign to him. His entire two-hour initial session was about the Tree as our Teacher.

“See how she envelops, is present, is unfolding and infolding all at once. From a central column she sways and lifts and settles and flys—her limbs, her upper reaches are flying.”

I marveled at how the tree was chosen as the central figure of our dance just as our own tree vigil and campaign had begun. Maybe trees were reaching out to us in mysterious ways right now…

He had us glance at the tree out the window and mirror its movement. The limbs were being washed around by the wind, the leaves giving and receiving swaying and dipping, rising and falling. I recalled the Buddha: Praise and blame, Gain or Loss, pleasure or sorrow, come and go like the wind. To be at peace. Rest and sway like a giant tree amidst them all.

Later that afternoon another teacher came in to teach. And more SyncroniciTREE. His lesson? He had us imagine we were redwood trees and how in order to support such great heights their roots must go down and connect out horizontally to interweave with the roots of other trees. So in fact no tree was standing alone, but needed each other, needed the community to withstand the winds and challenges of life. An interconnected web.

No tree or human can stand alone. We are complimentary.

Tree Haiku - Day 5 Winds bluster above Limbs make leaf music calling Me home to myself.

Postscript: Good news today: I came home to see a large contribution come in to the

What's Your TreeStory Campaign that sent us over the $4,000 mark, which means we can make another new TreeStory film! (Each $4,000 threshold we reach equals a new film).


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