Belly Dancing is a Sensual Art for Women
Sheer Red Sensuality
The American Belly Dancer
Many women in America have become very familiar with the art of belly dancing. They have heard or experienced this dance by their grandmothers, mothers, sisters, cousins, or their self.
Women may either admit to taking classes or say nothing because they fear what others might think. Many will boast about taking an exercise class in a gym, but there appears to be an attitude change concerning belly dancing.
During my early days of teaching I learned very quickly to advise my students that they were taking Middle Eastern dancing as these words discouraged negative feedback from others. In truth, the students were learning a variety of night club, ethnic, and folkloric dance movements.
Students who take a variety of styles gain knowledge which can be used to educate and answer questions from inquiring minds.
The words “belly dancing” seem to conjure negative mental pictures, comments, or stories which the listener has heard from other or less reliable sources or have visually experienced inappropriate performing behaviors in non-belly dancing environments; such as,adult strip clubs.
Eyes See Beauty
Belly Dancing Styles
Belly dancing was introduced to America in the 1950’s starting with the cabaret or night club style of dancing. It was promoted as a way to entertain your husband.
Approximately 68 years have passed since this dance was introduced in our country. Women have done much research into this dance throughout the passing years. It is my opinion that as long as there are women this dance will exist.
Why? Because historically this dance was created, designed, and performed by women. It is considered the first exercise program which women used for child bearing and labor. Its movements are designed to work the muscles of the female body. Movements and choreography are designed by women’s creative imagination. Women generally use this dance for their personal entertainment and share the dance with other women at celebration gatherings. Performing before an audience evolved much later.
Traditional, ethnic, and folkloric dances have continued as originally thought to have been performed. However, creativity and contemporary enthusiasts are inventing new steps and movements to meet the needs of the new dancers. There are communities throughout the United States which have dance competitions for new ideas.
The newest creation is known as American tribal. This is America’s creativity of combining Flamenco, Ballet, and Middle Eastern movements into a new dance style.
Women have more choices of styles to select from the Middle Eastern and Americanized buffet of movements. It will take many years for any one person to learn all of the different styles.
Glamorous Folkloric Fashion
Costumes have changed with the advancements of textile, notions, and embellishments. There are choices from the elegant night club or the total body cover found in folkloric dancing.
Regardless of how much fabric covers the body the dancer will always feel sexy and sensual when wearing these costumes.
Many of these costumes not only look attractive, but they make you to feel attractive.
It seems to me that women need to feel attractive, not from a point of vanity, but because it makes them feel better about their selves.
A Sensual Environment
Sexy Versus Sensual
Sexy comes to mind when speaking of belly dancers. This is probably why some of the students do not want to tell anyone that they are taking classes. Worst yet, don’t let your employer find out that this is your hobby. There are still people who think that belly dancers are strippers; not true. The blame is on the strippers who have dressed their act with the belly dancing costume and give people the wrong idea.
People have some strange ideas of what belly dancing is all about. Okay, I am not going to deny that there will always be this “sex” environment. This will always exist.
Stop and open your mind as to how many of us experience belly dancing. If we need to be labeled sexy then this term reflects our feelings of passion, desiring challenges, and an overall sensitivity to the excitement for the dance, its costumes, the music, and performances that makes people feel happy.
The audience admires beauty, athletic abilities, and enjoys relaxing for watching an assortment of slow, medium fast, and fast movements by the entertainer.
Both the dancers and the audience find this dance to be interesting, intriguing, and appealing to our senses. I guess we can also label the audience as being sexy.
Sensuality is experienced by the dancer through her natural senses. The dancer feels through her mind, body, and soul. The physical senses of seeing, hearing, touching, and feeling are sensually arousing. Sometimes a person may also experience the senses of smelling and tasting while dancing.
Focusing on the music captures the human body to move, the sounds and emotional vibrations from the music stimulate the mind. The sensations of “at one” with self elicits euphoria while dancing. This spiritual state is the spiritual essence between the dancer and her audience.
Human beings are sensual creatures. We use all of our senses in order to survive. No one should be made to feel guilty experiencing pleasure from their selected hobbies.