The Spirit of Peace Provides an Ever-Present Opportunity for Healing

This Week in Peace chronicles the exciting adventures of San Jose's own Dancer of Peace, Khalilah Ramirez. Written under divine inspiration, this column contains true stories of peace encounters in your neighborhood. This week the Dance of Peace brought a much needed healing energy to an emotional event aimed at ending police violence, organized by loved ones of those lost to police in San Jose and nearby cities. Later, a meaningful display of connection with an officer during the Tuesday dance of peace demonstrated another tiny victory of the dance of peace.

Khalilah performing the dance of peace at the Feb. 20th event
Khalilah performing the Dance of Peace at the Stop Police Violence event Feb. 20th.

Hello to all! This is Khalilah, dancer of peace, here to welcome all who are reading. Spring has sprung! With the mild weather come numerous opportunities to get out and connect with others. This introductory paragraph is an informal invitation to come and visit the weekly Dance of Peace. Participate, watch, bring tiny folks and enjoy! Recently, citizens have affectionately referred to the dance as, the D.O.P, for the record, people, that is darling!

On February 20th, the African American Community Center in San Jose hosted an event to stop police brutality. The speakers at this event were leaders and activist, many of whom had lost loved ones to police brutality. According to their testimony, this loss of life can be based on fear, lack of proper training, miscommunication, apathy and countless other problems that can occur during encounters with police. Their stories come from all over the nation, as well as our own state and town. These stories were disheartening not only because of the devastating loss, but also because justice is rarely served in these cases. The organizers requested a Dance of Peace to help foster healing to the hearts of those present.

Confronted with such high levels of despair, anger and confusion within their narratives, I pondered: "How can one person dancing provide an effective healing? How can it positively impact hearts that are heavy?" Fortunately, the Dance of Peace is much more than just "one person dancing." It ignites the spark of peace that sleeps within us all. It embodies a spirit which has the power to acutely affect those watching. Once unleashed, the spirit of peace operates above and beyond the humble efforts of an individual dancer. The spirit of peace provides an ever-present opportunity for healing. It only requires the willingness and the clear intention to activate it. 

For this important occasion, Dance of Peace worked to translate the essence of a musical selection into peace. To feel the raw emotion within a music piece is a highly spiritual experience, one that is universally valid. It is classically difficult to put into words, but let's attempt! Inside the body, music can take flight. It can take on the form of any emotion. It can be felt deeply in the center of the heart. Each word sang and each note played creates a specific vibration in the body's electromagnetic field. We experience these sensations differently based on our one of a kind physiological makeup. It is also contoured by our current life experience. Human beings are fundamentally magnetic. We are ripe for the emotional healing that music can provide. This is a sort of magic. It is life affirming, indisputable and pure. The Dance of Peace taps into this, somewhat like a conductor. All of us can be 'charged' in this wonderful way! 

The song selected was Benjamin Clementine's “Adios.” It is an intense, dramatic melody about leaving this world. It was chosen to help provide a symbolic goodbye to the departed ones spoken of that day. The hope was that it would assist in mending the wounded hearts of family and friends left behind. The music won over the audience completely. People were expressive regarding their appreciation. Some people said that it provided a welcome, though tearful, release after a long day of grieving. The spirit of peace is always available to reach through darkness and lift our hearts into the light! 

Last but not least, a glimmer of hope. On Tuesday, February 23rd the Meridian/San Carlos Dance of Peace hosted a novelty. An SJPD officer driving an SUV drove by displaying curiosity about the dance. A few minutes later, he drove by again, stopped at the light and watched intently. Ten minutes later, the same officer was spotted, this time making a u-turn, smiling and waving. He did this in slow motion for all to see, not at all concerned with what others would think about seeing a uniformed officer openly grinning and waving. He offered a friendly, sincere gesture and seemed genuinely uplifted. A rare sight! These tiny victories are what we strive for; tolerance with a dash of wonder. Thanks and see you out there!

***New Hours/Location for the weekly Dance of Peace Performances:
Sundays 11am, Campbell Farmer's Market 
Tuesdays 12 noon, San Carlos and Meridian, San Jose

Related Media:
Childlike Aliveness with the Dance of Peace

Interaction Benefits the Heart, Strengthens the Mind

Storytelling to Uplift Others

This article is part of the categories: Community  / San Jose//South Bay 
This article is part of the tags: Dancer of Peace  / Healing  / Khalilah Ramirez  / Peace  / Peace Dancer  / Police Violence  / This Week in Peace 


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