"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #69 Thursday, Sept 27, 2001
Ego in Dancing
Being a physician myself, many times I draw comparisons between Art of
Medicine and Art of Dancing. Both require a high level of skill. I personally
think that to understand and execute proper body movement in dancing,
probably requires higher skill and understanding of mechanics of human body.
Having said that, I feel there are many traits common between champion
dancers and champion surgeons. The one that I want to touch upon today is the
Without going into dictionary, I think Ego means: "self awareness". It is natural then for every one of us to have some Ego, to understand who and what we are? This is healthy, yes, but when things get out of hand then it becomes a problem.
EGOIST: Anytime the Ego will get out of hand or in other words if Ego takes you over, you become an Egoist. You loose awareness of your surroundings and get so wrapped up in your own self that it starts to become a real problem.
In Medicine, there is something we call "good bedside manners." These manners are the basis on which we deal with our clients or patients. You could be the greatest surgeon in the world but if you cannot bring kindness and if you cannot bring yourself to the level of the patient, to make him/her understand where and what is the problem and how to fix it, something has been lost on the way.
Dancing is no different. A dancer is an artist who draws a picture because he/she wants to draw or paint a picture. You are born with that instinct. Some of you become great artists and at that point your "picture lines" become noticeable by others. Initially you were dancing for your own pleasure but now it seems it is more important to please others and that is where your success lies.
In short, I see so often that as artists reach pinnacle of success, some of them start to be taken over by their Ego. At this time they are in danger of becoming an Egotist or Egoist, whatever.
The "surgical resident" has now become a "SURGEON" but he is so good that very soon he forgets that he was a resident or a student only last year. The Ego or Egotism takes over. He gets by because he is so good and he is needed. So he becomes a God in a way and there are those who need him badly. They really dont know any better but I hope you know what I mean, there is something that this person is about to loose, the "human" aspect of being a human being. The indifference and the busy life takes over and all the commendation and applause fill the room. He better watch it. Do not become an Egoist. There is nothing wrong in becoming God Like but if one really feels they have become a God or Goddess, God Help. This applies to all vocations, professions and societies in general.
On a more personal level this applies more specially to Dancers, Dance Teachers, Champions and Coaches alike. The worst scenario is when a person like me starts to think that he knows it all. With best wishes from ... Max, the egoist.
Questions and comments to Dancemax@aol.com, thank you.