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Dance of the Soul (Sufi Whirling Workshop & Gathering)
January 18 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm$15 – $20
Join us at our monthly Sufi Whirling Workshop and Sema Gathering, with live/recorded music, meditation, whirling, Zikr (Sufi Prayer) and Sohbet (Sufi Talk). We will create a sacred, supportive space where we can all release whatever energy no longer serves us, relax and open our heart, body, and mind. We will discover the power and mystery of ancient dances and rituals – a gateway for self-growth and spiritual transformation– through movement, music, love, and stillness. Be moved by beautiful, sacred music performed live.
Each month we will learn various techniques, history, rules, turns, spirals, and circles of Iranian Sema, Turkish Sema, Baktashi Sema, Khorasan Sema, Uyghur Sema, and ancient Iranic Sema (based on Zoroastrian tradition and the rotation of the sun).
Our gathering is NOT a performance. More details about sacred dance and Sema training may be found here.
- First join for a welcoming circle and Farima will lead us into her unique 4 element breathing meditation or 7 mode music meditation and relaxation.
- We will progress into various Sufi whirling workshop techniques, styles, and rules (Turkish Sema, Khorasan Sema, Ancient Iranic Sema, Baktashi Sema, Uyghur Sema).
- Next we will progress into a prayer and open floor whirling with both live and recorded world sacred music, poetry, and drumming.
- We will close with a Zikr (Sufi Prayers), ancient Iranian Shamanic rituals, sharing, a gratitude circle, and Sohbet (Sufi Talk) by Dervish and Semazen, Farima Berenji.
Farima’s teachings are based on ancient Iranic rituals, science of whirling, and the sacred geometry of whirling. We will learn essential techniques of whirling preparation, maintaining balance and posture, controlling dizziness, self-focus during turning, breath work, and more.
Farima’s monthly Sema Gathering offers a unique expression of sacred culture, inspired by nature, ancient Iranic rituals, and the beautiful spiritual traditions of Sufism. We will whirl and journey together to celebrate love, unity, and allow the light to enter our soul.
Open your heart! Listen! Turn, dance, and move in anyway that makes you feel alive!
Guidelines and Tips
- We kindly ask for no talking on the whirling floor and to keep the Sema area quiet at all times. Respect yourself as well as those around you.
- Please wear comfortable clothing (white or light colored if possible) and wear socks or soft soled shoes.
- Avoid eating a large meal 1-2 hours prior
Founder and Artistic Director, Worldwide Simorgh Dance Collective, 2007
Founder and Director of Dance of the Soul ® and the Awakening and Lioness Project ® (Ancient Iranic Warrior Dances and Rituals, 2013)
Farima Berenji is an award winning Dance Ethnologist and internationally acclaimed dance artist, choreographer, instructor, and Sufi dance master. Recognized and certified as one of the few world scholarly experts of ancient and mystical Iranian dance ethnology by UNESCO, she travels worldwide to record, research, lecture, perform, educate, and to inspire dynamic creativity and rejuvenation through dance and movement. She is a Magi (Iranian Shaman Master) and a Sufi.
Farima has worked as a UN scholar, researching and led an excavations team of Iranian archeology emphasizing the preservation of ancient and mystical Iranic dances. Farima’s dance and spiritual training spans years of intensive research with master artists, scholars, and spiritual teachers worldwide. She comes from the Sufi Order of Yarsan of Iran and has devoted her life into researching and brining back the ancient Sufi traditions of Iran and the origin of Sema (Khorasan Sema).
Farima teaches her own original research findings, methods, techniques, and exercises to uncover the connection between the soul and dance movements based on the book she is writing ‘Seven Sema’ the connection of human soul and the 7 sacred elements of life. Her signature dance projects (dance of the soul and the lioness) combines Persian and Near Eastern sacred and mystical dance forms, history, poetry, and the Sufi and healing rituals of ancient Iran Persia, the Altai Mountains, and Central Asia.
As a scholar, Farima presents new archaeological discoveries and research upon Sufism and its connection to the ancient Zoroastrianism and Sufism, the human body, and its symbolic meaning in the Universe along the pathway to the soul. She will introduce you to ritual movements celebrating the grace and joy of life and to a society where and when people lived in harmony with each other and with nature. She teaches her own unique movement and techniques that are researched and inspired during her various studies in Khaneqas (Sufi Houses) and Fire temples of Khorasan, Kurdistan, Tehran, and Shiraz.
Farima is one of the few Iranian women who has been allowed to teach, write and perform the Gwati and Vahishta Sema Rituals in Iran and around the world and has been recognized by Iran and UN as the pioneer of bringing back the original mystic Rituals of Khorasan. She is the first Iranian woman to have received the CID-UNESCO award and certification and is currently the dance ambassador of UNESCO, the first Iranian woman artist to receive the National Folk Dance Association award, and the first Iranian woman healer and dancer to have been chosen for TED Talk. Farima is the recipient of the prestigious UN award and has been recognized by Congressman Mike Honda, by the Iranian Women’s Rights Committee “30 Voices,” Music and Cultural Organization of Turkey. Farima was the first Iranian, to have been invited and perform during a reception for US President Obama, Governor of Alaska, UN, EU, Ambassador of Canada, and Ambassador of Spain. Read more…