Libido: Desire and Ice
Reviewed By: Andrea Juhan Ph.D.
Andrea Juhan Ph.D.
Author: Andrea Juhan
Language availability: English
I think most of us are familiar with desire, the longings within us, at least the longing we can tolerate feeling and acknowledging. Equally, I imagine most of us know something about Ice; our tendency to shut down or shut out others and even ourselves from the vulnerability our desires create for us.
The swing between the two, Desire and Ice, are a dance we engage in probably almost every day. At least internally in our minds, it’s “do I want this or that”; can I allow myself this, but it’s too scary, impractical, or underserved. Sometimes this inner conversation is mostly unconscious. I know inside myself the vague feeling of desiring my partner in a way that feels risky, and right on top of that, I can hear myself talking myself out of it. The whole conversation took less than a minute, with the genuine desire dissolving into the day’s activities.
We may feel stricken at the thought of this well-traversed swing, from wanting closeness to not wanting, or fear of wanting, or fear of the other’s response, being visible to others. We imagine this is a private internal conversation; people only want our clear yes or no. I doubt this actually
First, I am pretty sure our intimate or potentially intimate partners experience our desires and the parts of us that are frozen. It is felt and sensed in the fundamental non-verbal way we read all human interactions.
Second, the communication of the shakiness involved in a wholehearted embodied desire, and the movement simultaneously t
fear or a protective frozen stance is often welcomed. Even if not exactly welcomed it is a sign of truth, humility, and vulnerability to be able to share this dance with others.
Of course, this dance happens in our mind’s; images of the object of desire, the yes, no and maybe thoughts. Emotionally we know the torment or confusion of conflicting feelings. When we can expand our sense of identity to the soul, the part of us that can hold this human experience, with kindness and wisdom, we know, at those times, how deeply connecting and intimate our struggles can be. Shared throughout time, place and all peoples. Many songs, and great pieces of art, in all modalities, are an outer expression of this inner turmoil
The actual physical movement of this continuum is rich, powerful and necessary- the subject of LIBIDO desire and ice programs.
It is our physicalizing of these feeling, stories, and archetypes that bring us the exact resources and support we need to tolerate, support and celebrate our own mixed bag of longings, insecurities, passions, and hesitations. And the immense creativity involved in being deeply, truly relational. To be fully relational we need our strong rooted physical presence to stand in the fire of the unknown.
We each have relational blueprints- Attachment styles, that have shaped what we know about Love sex, desire, and heartfelt connection. The dance of physically exploring and expressing these styles are well known to us even if unconscious. The mindful container of Open Floor Movement practice invites what is known and unknown to be met and made real thru the bones of our moving bodies
The Movements of our bodies, big movements and the subtle unseen micro movements, are regulating our intimate dances based on what we grew up with and what has worked to keep us safe. The active engagement of conscious dance (emphasis on conscious) can help us to add in variation, new skills, new levels of contact and risk.
Said simply: Dance expands us into our full human expression if that happens to be our intention.
When I teach, this is truly my intention — a clear vector with an unknown outcome. Healing dance work is an elegant vehicle for transformation. I have seen this countless times. And gratefully I have experienced this “realness” for myself, more and more over the years.
Our bodies desire that freedom, our hearts long for that melting, our imagination hungers for the ineffable creative reign of the Soul to guide us home – home to ourselves with alive kindness, strong passion, and a timeless surrender.