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Joseph Galata  

video, film, arts organizer, U.S.A.

...I hosted a major Sacred Dance Festival this weekend, with people of all religions using dance and music to worship and join together in spiritual unity. Do you know what the Bahá'í Naw Ruz party was in this large town? A lecture on unity. Even Bahá'ís came to the Sacred Dance Festival instead.

We had over 100 people - Sufi, Islamic, Native American, Hindu, African, Celtic, Gypsy - participate with a creative sharing. We dedicated the 2-hour ceremony in hopes of obtaining the Gypsy state of spiritual being known as Duende. In this state, one's body, soul, spirit and mind are united in creativity and thus inspired by the Holy Spirit of O Devel ("God" in Romany language) to create sacred spaces and, in doing so, attain the Jewish mystical state of decekut where one sees oneself through God's eyes.

We had beautiful Hindu Sanskrit chantings, followed by a Sufi breathing exercise and dance of universal peace honoring the elements of air/fire/water/ground/ether. Then we had an African Women's Basket/harvest dance, while an African male recited a poem about the courage of women and their connection to Mother Earth. Then we had a most magnificent Native ceremony where the men, teen boys and little boys danced while the women and girls chanted and drummed. Then I did a Gypsy dance for praising God, closing with a group spontaneous blessing dance of Islam. We then shared gifts of Mother Earth, fruits, breads, cheeses and candies. We had little 'altars' all around the room with trinkets of the guests about their religions, spiritual paths, ancestors, etc. We honored a bread ceremony of our ancestors, calling to mind those in the family constellations in other realms, whom we offered our blessings and asked for theirs...

Excerpt from a letter in Arts Dialogue, June 2000, pages 3 - 4

  • Letter: Arts Dialogue, June 2000
  • Review: International Bahá´í Media & Arts Association meeting in Reno, U.S.A., Arts Dialogue, March 1996

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