Shiva Nata: the Dance of Shiva

Shiva Nata is brain training that kind of looks like martial arts, and acts like drugs-that-make-you-smart-and-hot.
It uses movement patterns to generate new neural connections and huge understandings that let you rewrite your patterns.
Sometimes we hate it for being so damn hard – but we get over that because Shiva Nata makes us graceful, coordinated and awesome. And because of the hot, buttered epiphanies.

Epiphanies are stoopid.

Here’s the problem with epiphanies.

Those Shivanautical moments of bing and zing that show up and make you go oh.

They’re really hard to explain to anyone outside of your head.

Because a lot of the time they sound kind of obvious.

It’s kind of like big spiritual truths.


Like you have a serious moment and you realize that everything is made of the same stuff.

But no matter how you frame it ….

  • It’s like physics! The same components come together to become different shapes and forms. A tree is a tire is a doughnut. I am a tree and a tire and a doughnut!
  • It’s like kabbalah! Everything is made of light!
  • We are all one. We’re all the same, at the core of things. It’s just permutations!

Yeah. Your enormous life-changing understanding is just probably going to sound kind of ridiculous. At best.

More likely, it’s going to come across as something that everyone already knows. Or has heard. Or doesn’t seem like a big deal.

And the reason it’s a big deal to you is that you have had a deep, visceral understanding.

Your entire body knows it. Your consciousness knows it. Your cells know it. Your heart knows it.

You are in the process of internalizing something really huge. And it’s so huge that it can’t be explained without sounding like the biggest, most cheesy cliche ever.

Same deal with Shivanautical epiphanies.

The biggest, most surprising and wondrous ones are really hard to explain.

Sometimes this is because the actual information isn’t that much of a revelation: it’s the depth at which you get it that is the new thing.

And sometimes this is because once you have the new piece of information, it’s so completely obvious that you can’t really remember what your brain/life was like without it.

And sometimes this is because the new way of perceiving things is so compelling and so deep that it doesn’t get words.

It happens.

The other day I woke up into a serious Dance of Shiva moment.

I knew it was a Dance of Shiva moment because everything made sense. And also because I was feeling kind of annoyed that I hadn’t spent my entire life acting on this thing I knew to be true.

But I couldn’t put it into words.

It was sort of like … “everything is good.”


Everything has good at its core. And I can break down any situation and take out the essence which is good, and use that essence to make the next thing happen.

And this is what needs to happen. And Dance of Shiva will help me do it because the purpose of the practice is to break things down into their essence and restructure itself. From the good into the good.

Couldn’t explain it beyond that. And to be honest, my thinky brain wanted to start finding all the intellectual holes in this.

And instead, I decided to just take the essence of it. And let it plant seeds for my day. I can find holes later. I’m good at that.

21 Comments on “Epiphanies are stoopid.”

  1. PERFECT timing for this bit of shivanautical wisdom Havi! I just started level 2 (YAY LEVEL 2) and the epiphanies have beeen coming fast and furious. The one that felt the BIGGEST was somthing I tweeted. But then….I looked at my poor pathetic tweet and it was that it? or So what?

    The idea I tweeted was that what I do in my work as a coach is to ‘create space for connection, feelings, laughter, and learning.’

    The BIG epiphany for me was the creating space part. It feels and felt SO important… and is opening up a hundred new ideas for me but it is definetly one of those, ‘you had to be there’ kind of things…

    Sorry for the TMI but this was just the reassurance I needed.

  2. What’s hard for me sometimes is not trying to explain it to someone else and have them go “duh, that’s obvious”, but having my *own* brain react in that way. Yeah, being dismissed by my own brain – fun… (um, not!) I know it’s frustrating for the thinky brain when no words can adequately convey the new way of perceiving things, and I guess it vents its frustration through this “duh, that’s obvious” thing – and it’s absolutely right in a way: the inadequate words make it sound exactly like the thing we knew already. This little thinky brain of mine has got to understand that so long as it’s the only one getting something, *I* don’t get it; my body has to be in on the thing too so that the deep understanding I need can happen. It’s a dance, and they have to dance it together.

    I love that you say you know you’re experiencing a Shiva Nata moment when everything makes sense. It’s an interesting point of reference. My latest epiphany definitely left me with that feeling.
    Josiane´s last blog ..A (huge!) shift in perspective

  3. Havi, this really helps make sense of some of the frustrating misunderstandings that seem to be popping up for me lately. That visceral understanding really does take seemingly basic things to a whole new level — they shake the foundation a bit. It’s helpful for me to remember that even though there is big stuff going on in my head (and heart), that doesn’t necessarily translate to the outside world so easily.

    I’m totally loving the whole idea of breaking down the essence of good and building on that. Wow, that’s really powerful stuff! :)


  4. ilikered


    the finding the good and using that to get to the next bit of good.
    Definitely ringing true for me too, and it is so hard to explain somehow.

    I was trying to pinpoint what it is that has ‘clicked’ with me since I found you and what you have to say (its been almost a year) I was talking to my boyfriend and wanting so badly to impart the ‘big’ things that really shifted how I understand and experience myself compared to a year ago, but it is the things that became viscerally true, that have made the big difference. Those obvious, feel like they have always been true things that are hard to find words for….


  5. oh this rings so true for me.

    I had a post shiva nata bolt of ‘aha!’ just the other day. I went rushing to share with my other half who responded with ‘yeah, I know sweetie, I told you that ages ago’.

    There’s such a big difference though between hearing an obvious truth from someone else and actually getting it for yourself at that deep internal level. Even if it’s impossible to explain to the rest of the world!

  6. finger. button. totally right on Havi!
    Laura´s last blog ..New Year, Renewed Workspace.

  7. Holy wow. Your epiphany helped me sort of untangle some wholly unformed thoughts that were sprouting in my mind. Thoughts that were oddly similar to yours, though I didn’t connect them to Shiva Nata. But now I will!

    And though I haven’t written publicly about my Dance of Shiva experience (it’s only been a few weeks), I will say that I already find it incredible.
    Zoe´s last blog ..Madness, Genius, and the Things We Don’t See

  8. R

    Oooh, I totally get this! (stoopid epiphany?) I was on vacation and saw a guy who looked like someone special, someone that I would like to get to know and I had an epiphany that there were more possible partners our there for me than I had ever met. (Having trouble getting over my ex being “The One”.) And then when I came back and tried to tell this to my therapist it just sounded obvious. But I had “gotten” it at a deep level… like it had previously been in my brain and now was in my body.

  9. Megan

    Yes – yes – yes. My moments of bing give me such peace but they aren’t translatable to others. Yes. But oh is it ever lovely to get them – to actually start feeling something “in my bones.” Never knew what that expression felt like before I started doing Shiva Nata.

  10. Just another comment saying: yes, this.

    It seems like some really important, profound things just don’t translate into words. That’s why the thinking brain rolls its eyes at it, it’s not the epiphany that’s stoopid, it’s the translation.

    Well, maybe. That’s just what I’m thinking now, but I studied language in uni, that might have something to do with it.

  11. Rachel

    Yes! When I get a wave of truth over my body, or those fully formed bings that flash from the back of my head to the front w/o warning, my rational brain says, “yeah, that’s crazy” – even though it knows the truth and wants badly to believe it. That brain is scared to leave the status quo and grow; it seems to say that where we are right now is good enough, don’t want more, don’t dream or do anything to screw it all up. It would rather have the familiar pain of Now than face an unknown that feels right. Even when I ignore my body, it’s the most rational brain I have – but it’s hard to put your trust in that when it goes against everything you’ve been taught about rationality, pro & con lists, and oh yeah the economy is bad, etc. It’s hard enough to explain that “right feeling” to yourself. So I’m learning to stop explaining and just take little steps that outfox the rational brain.

  12. Yeah, epiphanies are stoopid–except to the person having them.

    For me it was like living in a world where objects of different mass fall at different speeds. Bricks fall faster than feathers (even in a vacuum) because, well, duh! Bricks are heavier.

    And then BING! the epiphany happened, and my world was totally re-ordered. So I ran around dropping apples and airplanes; bananas and bowling balls; cucumbers and cranes, all the while buttonholing passers-by and screaming “Look! Look!! They all fall AT THE SAME SPEED!!!”

    And the nice people looked at me like I was a nut, patted me on the head, and said, “Of course they do.” And then they walked away, shaking their heads at me.

    However, one day one of them will realize that the world is NOT flat. And that person will probably grab me by the lapels, insisting how amazing it is that (a) we can’t fall off the edge, (b) there are all kinds of shortcuts we can take now, and (c) how this puts seasons and all kinds of other phenomenae into perspective.

    I hope I can be the kind of person I wish I was when this happens.
    Spike´s last blog ..50,017 You Can’t See Plus 55 You Can

  13. Lilly

    My latest ‘epiphany’, I took the DVD to the Oregon coast on a birthday trip with my husband last weekend. It was a nice relaxing trip, and Shiva Nata session. I came away from that trip with the insight that was ok to come into the light, and things aren’t nearly as hard/difficult/convoluted as I make them out to be. Very simple, yet also fairly life changing!

    Thank you…

  14. […] This is all exactly the kind of absurdly obvious epiphany I’m always having from Dance of Shiva. […]

  15. […] of the more amazing things about Shiva Nata is the regularity of these epiphanies. And one of the more frustrating things is that it’s […]

  16. […] This is one of those famous (and sometimes famously obvious) moments of “bing!” where the neural circuits […]

  17. […] can’t explain it better than that. This is the part again about how epiphanies are stupid because you can’t put them into […]

  18. […] I want to make sure they continue!  Especially since I encountered another article there about how epiphanies can really seem like obvious, “stoopid” things sometimes, but it explains how the experience of Shiva Nata epiphanies is so visceral, it’s […]

  19. […] not used to thinking about myself in a creative way. Especially because most of my epiphanies sound completely ridiculous (The fear is mostly stupid. OMG PEOPLE! THE FEAR IS MOSTLY […]

  20. […] there… this is big epiphany stuff. It takes time to find the right words. Even though epiphanies are stoopid anyway. (And why are my headers being mean to […]

  21. […] I’m sure everyone assumed this was obvious to me and I knew it was happening, and I did on some level, but I’ve just realised it more profoundly and in a new way because epiphanies are stoopid. […]

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