The Great Uniter by Becky Kain

Music and movement are life to me. As necessary as food, water, rest, and love, they are the first means of communication and expression that I ever understood. I grew up singing in church since before I was 3; my mom directed the choirs. At home, the piano was always being played by my older sisters, and starting at age 5, I found myself on that bench, mostly being forced to practice for my lessons. A few short years after that, though, I’d lose myself for hours getting lost in sounds and even worlds that I was able to create. I was also the little girl that you see on the beach doing 20 back handsprings in a row. I was fearless, flexible, and strong. The only thing I ever remember wanting to be in my childhood was an athlete. I pretended the curb was a balance beam and I visualized myself sticking the landing at the Olympics. I juggled the soccer ball for hours alone and fantasized about scoring the winning goal in the World Cup. After choosing music over athletics when I entered college, I started to get really sad because a part of me was missing. Yoga entered my life about a year after I had my first son, and I started to feel whole again. Buti found me about 5 years after that, and then as every butisattva knows, the game changed forever.

In Buti, we sweat with intention and don’t let our sweat go to waste. Music is also included in the intentionality of our practice. Anyone who has ever been to a class with a fully embodied teacher who truly delivers knows that a Buti class can and should be a spiritual experience. Music is the GPS that guides our movement to facilitate a mind/body/spirit connection, and we can’t pretend that the energy behind the music doesn’t matter. When the music is all the way up and the drum pounds so hard you can almost feel it in your gut..when everyone is moving together and the collective energy is felt and shared, that is when the feel-good hormones are released that bond us together. We bond, develop trust, and find our tribe.  

Music and movement transcend our human experience in many ways- we really can touch the divine through both of these mediums. They also help us to integrate our human experience rather than escape it. They are universal languages, ultimate gifts to us to give and to receive. Both express the inexpressible, both connect us, and both are for everyone. The force behind music and movement, whether gentle or intense, is incredible. Nothing else can unite us as they do, and in a climate set on dividing us, we need music, movement and one another now more than ever before.

This playlist is full of music that feels futuristic and ancient simultaneously. Most of it is instrumental, but any lyrics are intentional and fit the energy I look to evoke. Just because it’s intentional doesn’t mean it’s not fun- the Ghanian and Brazilian beats make it close to impossible not to smile. There is also lots of tension/release which creates the natural highs and lows that make Buti what it is, threading HIIT and cardio intensive dance throughout a dynamic yoga flow. Final savasana is rooted in the note “C”, the tone associated with the root chakra, reminding us that we are safe and supported.

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