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The root of this work can be traced to earliest human history when disease was seen as a loss of soul and dance was an integral part of the healing process.
— Joan Chodorow

What is Authentic Movement?

Authentic Movement is a completely self-directed form in which individuals discover a movement pathway that offers a bridge between the conscious and the unconscious.

Authentic Movement explores the relationship between a mover and a witness, being seen and seeing. With eyes closed, the mover listens inwardly and finds a movement arising from a hidden prompting, a cellular impulse. Gradually the invisible becomes visible, the inaudible becomes audible, and explicit form is given to the content of direct experience

The witness brings a receptive quality of clear attention to the mover. The witness is mindful of the inner world of sensation and meaning, judgment and criticism. Though personal shadow issues may emerge, the witness accepts the mover without analysis or direction and speaks only when the mover asks for a response. The mover and witness together can achieve a level of perception of self and other that evokes deep respect and empathy.


Authentic Movement is informed by developmental psychology, somatic epistemology, Jungian thought, dance ethnology, and mystical studies. The Institute provided an opportunity for investigative studies in Authentic Movement.  A reader and bibliography supported the course work and learners contributed to the body of knowledge through narrative research.

Who Attended the Authentic Movement Institute?

  • Therapists had an opportunity to gain an embodied understanding of the somatic intricacies in the therapeutic relationship.
  • Artists had an opportunity to move through old patterns, and to reconnect with the lifeblood of their own aesthetic impulse.
  • Educators replenished by returning to the wisdom of the body, as our original text.
  • Those who seek had an opportunity to embody questions of the spirit.