School of Movement Medicine - Mindfulness in Motion

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Issue: April 2007
Contemplating a wild ride in 2005

Written April 20, 2007 by Smith Hanes


On the train from Brussels to Orval,  rocking side to side in a blue leather seat gazing into the sun-dappled forests of southeast Belgium, I listen to gentle tunes of Amos Lee on the IPOD, contemplating a 5 day dance at la ferme du Bois-le-comte, the home and retreat center held by “Sir Luc”, his wife and beautiful children.

As we neared Orval, I noticed a number of men of all ages and nationalities congregating around the exit door.  This was our stop….the end of that trainride, that life, the beginning of this one.


For this man, I am accustomed to rooms of sinewy swirling lush women, living in their feminine flow, passionately connecting to their decisive warrior and displaying their ether in that dance of the dreamer.  I am accustomed to being outnumbered by the feminine form, being the largest on the floor, one of few men.


So what would it be like in a room of 50 men moving to the rhythms?  Would the pulse of the male tribe traveling from all over the world drive the roof off the barn by the end of the week?  Would our individual sense of competition keep us from bonding? What could we accomplish during that week?


I had heard of Ya'Acov through the years, his mystical sense and his wild ass ways…jumping out of planes, sweat lodges that never end, workshops that dance until the dawn.  If anyone could, he would be the one to coral all this male energy.


He corralled us, and coaxed us, drove us through a week of raw, open heart-filled days removing all importance of being from different cultures and countries.  He navigated this powerful group of daring men through the waters of  father, son, brother.  Allowing us to expose ourselves…or not…welcoming us to the edge of experiences whose end is more important than the means… open the heart.


In this group of men, I have now have a tribe of brothers that I carry with me wherever I walk on this earth. One man has hosted me in his home with his expectant wife in Sweden, another stayed at my home in Atlanta on the night before he embarked on a 6 month hike on the Appalachian trail (an extreme wilderness hike along the Appalachian mountains in the eastern united states).  I have received e-mails of a child’s birth that was conceived a few weeks before the workshop, and yesterday I had an amazing dance in New York with a gentle warrior, Andreas from Munich, a brother from wild at heart ‘05.


What a gift you’ve given me, Ya'Acov, and my 50 brothers from around this great earth.

Bring on Wild at Heart, 07 in shallah.  


Smith Hanes 
For a download PDF click Wild at Heart 
To book contact Roland at or 01803 762255



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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent the views of the School of Movement Medicine. Roland Wilkinson, Nappers Crossing, Staverton, Devon TQ9 6PD, UK Tel & Fax +44 (0)1803 762255 http://www.