The Museum of Vestigial Desire


tags: dance published on:

We have not talked about immersion so far. What is immersion? Single-minded focus on the task at hand is immersion? Does not the concept of immersion raise further questions about the nature of the subject and the object. Who is immersed in what?

And can we truly be single-minded? Is being single-minded not just an act operating within its own wave-pattern with its own ups and downs? Can deviation ever be absent?

We will not chronicle more questions. We will proceed to expand on what we can. Immersion is an act that is designed to trick the self and other actors into thinking that he subject in question no longer has any capacity for engagement. This trick serves two purposes. One, it gives the subject an opportunity to parse material already collected in the system to reach a state capable of reception again. Two, it leaves the flip-side of the self (which usually plays a theatrical role in the process of the subject achieving its ends) free to pursue its own distractions. A part of you might be looking out of the window at the water drops tip-tapping from the wet terrace and a part of you might be observing the inward and outward movement of air from your nostrils. When a zone of immersion erupts, somehow the self and the flip-side of the self somehow align their agendas. This alignment is tricky. Because each is pursuing its own agenda and they don't really have any other strategic agreement.

What we know as single-minded focus is actually this moment of alignment.

This alignment is the rare movement within the thicket of our narrative, in which there is a bias in the system that supports our desire. This alignment can't be caused. But it can be felt. Experienced actors are able to feel their way into a state of flow. Feeling is an action that makes the actor sensitive. This sensitivity can be practiced.

Practice is a state of immersion which has a long term engagement. It is possible to remain immersed in one's practise across decades. This is where immersion and duration become related. It is possible to establish a practice in the matter of a few seconds, if the duration of immersion is intense enough. It is rare, but it can happen. Again it cannot be wished for. It can only be part of an arsenal of tactics that one knows to identify if and when it occurs.

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