Tantsu

 

Tantsu begins by unconditionally holding someone’s whole body from the back as, loosely clothed, they lie on their side on cushions or a massage table. We gently clasp shoulder and hip between our forearms, doing nothing, staying in the emptiness at the bottom of the breath, until our arms are pushed apart by their breath, a pushing apart that draws our breath up into every part of our body. We drop back into the emptiness and are drawn up again and again.We start with our forearms instead of our hands which, controlled by the brain, pick apart and interpret whatever they touch. Our forearms come from our core and, as we learn in Watsu when we float someone at our heart, our whole core contains both our body center and heart center. In some places where our arm stops on its way up the back the breath draws us up from the base of the core to its other center, the heart, where sometimes a movement continues beyond the breath, continues out our arm to the one we hold. When our arms clasp and rotate the shoulder, engaging our whole body until everything comes to rest, out of that stillness our hand, now ready to come from our core, is drawn to their heart center. It stays there while our other hand is drawn to the head, connecting it to their core. Everything connects and moves and breathes together. When we let an arm lay across our open hands until it becomes weightless and we lift and move and stretch it every which way, our breath is drawn higher and higher. The more our whole body is engaged, the more the movement beyond the breath draws us to other places. When we move the leg and find the place where all its weight is balanced, it is the place where our own breath is grounded. A simple progression from the back can be done on both sides with anybody in Tantsuyoga. In Core Tantsu after it is done on one side someone is rolled into a new position for the second side.