“The Mysticism of Oriental Dance”: the new book on this fascinating discipline

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Belly dance book, article – review

Diana Migliano is a popularizer, researcher and belly dance teacher. She recently ventured into writing the book “La Mistica della Danza Orientale”. The work is so titled to emphasize the spiritual aspect that includes, among other things, this discipline. The latter in fact has very ancient origins and, consequently, is linked to particular rituals: this is evidenced, for example, by the discovery of depictions of dancers engraved on the Egyptian Pyramids.

Oriental dance in the last decade has had a real exploit in Italy, which has now faded somewhat. Despite this, it has not yet been regulated and therefore cannot be officially considered a sporting activity on a par with other dances.

Apart from the spiritual factor, according to the author, oriental dance can also be an expression of simple life energy or fun. Some choreography is designed with the intention of being “liberating,” to draw both ordinary men and women into the vortex of music (dances of this kind can help as well those who are trying to figure out their true gender identity). The belly, after all, is considered along with the navel to be the point of balance of the whole body and connection with the world: learning to move it well, therefore, facilitates feeling more in tune with our surroundings. Oriental dance, in short, in this respect at least, is quite the opposite of classical dance, where one has to keep the belly and pelvis still and the whole body appears more rigid and in axis.

In the book, moreover, a chapter is devoted to the benefits that oriental dance can bring on a physical level, such as first and foremost the decrease in menstrual pain. Diana Migliano recommends approaching it by trying at first to follow the music instinctively, going only later to study the individual steps and movements, which are also presented through these pages. Diana relates that it was not easy to codify them, because each of them frequently is called in different ways by the various masters and schools/currents.

The famous shimmy movement, in which the hips are shaken, is represented in the book by an illustration by designer Michele D’Aloisio, where we see the goddess Lilith who, with her wiggling, symbolizes the appearance of the most rebellious woman. Equally striking is the illustrated panel concerning the goddess Isis, depicted with her arms held in a snake pose and with wings (from which the typical belly-dancing accessory called precisely “The Wings of Isis” was inspired). The custom of wearing a belt around the waist while dancing oriental dance, on the other hand, derives from Greco-Roman costume, and in these pages the illustration of the goddess Aphrodite wearing a golden belt demonstrates this.

To explore all these topics further, you can purchase the essay by going to the best bookstores, or by ordering it online at Amazon or the website www.ilgiardinodeilibri.it


Marianna Pilato


Find the original article on the infodanza.com portal: https://infodanza.com/la-mistica-della-danza-orientale-il-nuovo-saggio-su-questa-disciplina-affascinante/?fbclid=IwAR1OgnuRKkLv1_uI-KsIHQ4POti13puNk2fjygm94QiEyfsA8PSUgs3kTg4


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