What is Eurythmy?
You may have heard of the British band Eurhythmics who most likely have taken their name from this expressive movement art form. It is part art, part therapy, and claims to have therapeutic purposes.
The dancer moves in slow-moving, rhythmic movements. It helps the body and mind to relax and creates a trance-like rhythmic movement that helps you to feel centered. Some even describe it as an act of ‘spiritual insight’.
The word ‘eurythmy’ comes from the Greek word for beautiful or harmonious and graceful rhythm.
In a world before ‘mindfulness’ (Eurythmics was created by Rudolf Steiner and his wife in the very early 20th century – around 1911), it engulfs the body, mind, and soul into one dancing entity. Steiner described it as ‘the art of the soul’, meaning that one could lose oneself to the rhythm and feel at one with nature.
Its origins are not entirely clear, but it may go back to Ancient Greek chants and dances of priests and priestesses, being part of nature and aligning the physical and the spiritual body. Similar dance forms are the dancing Dervishes or Classical Indian dance.
The first performances took place in the then newly-built Goeteanum in Dornach, Switzerland, where a small stage group offered weekly performances. It was mainly Steiner’s wife Marie Steiner-Von Sivers, a trained actress and speech artist, who took over this movement. The troupe even went on tour in 1919, performing in other European countries besides Switzerland.
Most people who have taken Eurythmy lessons claim it has helped them to deal with stress, lack of sleep, and neurotic tendencies. Others said it helps them to focus and feel more centered and content. Children with ADHD show good progress, learning to calm down and move to a very gentle, graceful, and slow pattern of movements.
These days this dance technique has moved on. Watch this YouTube Video by clicking on the picture