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As described in ancient texts, female divinities (termed yogini, dakini, matrka) are invoked by mantra recitation and bodied forth by human women, who dance in an ecstatic state of trance-identification. The yoginis undergo transfiguration before all present, taking on an appearance and movements of their divine counterparts. The enraptured women, ornamented as dieties, flushed with dancing, and glowing with heightened awareness, could then receive worship, bestow blessings, and confer magical powers.
from “Buddhist Goddesses of India” by Miranda Shaw
Adopting traditions from various times and cultures, Tenley’s dance is based on Tribal Belly Dance, with a distinctive modern fusion of traditional sacred dance forms, creating “Temple Tribal Fusion”.
Temple Tribal Fusion explores dances and traditions generally obscure to the West, yet hold some of the richest cultural expression of dance, music, costuming, myth, storytelling, and prayer. We discuss the journey of the Gypsies who courageously left India, first landing in Central Asia, venturing along the Silk Road, and continuing into Arabia and the Middle East, crossing Egypt and North Africa, to eventually mix with the Muslim Moors in Spain. We honor the pioneer women of the West who compiled these various traditions into a language to be taught and continued, now called “Belly Dance.”