Trance Dance Newsletter

Newsletter August 2021

you want to receive our newsletter?

Follow us on Facebook:Facebook


Foreword: Soul Retrieval
Retreat: Kundalini Trance Dance
Music: Misirlou - The Roots of a Song
Book: Darkness Visible
Video: RiP! A Remix Manifesto
Events: Overview

~ foreword ~
by Aernoudt Knecht

Trance Dance & Soul Retrieval

It has been my growing awareness, through years of facilitating trance dances and training people, that most of us suffer from some form of 'soul loss', meaning that we have disconnected from essential parts of ourselves and of life. From the moment of birth we have cultivated strategies of survival, that have disconnected us from the essence of our being. We've all been there, sacrificing, letting go of our nature, of our needs, to survive the moment. We all know the drill, how to be, how to act, and how to disconnect, so we will be accepted, loved and cared for.

I have facilitated many 'soul retrieval' rituals, with the specific intention to reconnect and reintegrate lost parts of our being, and becoming whole again. But I must say... some of the most profound soul retrieval moments I have witnessed were spontaneous, and quite unexpected! Actually, any trance dance holds this potential, and I see it happening again and again. The whole ritual, dance, blindfold and all, is set up in such a way that the static in the system clears up, and something original, more authentic, more essential, can resurface. I often say this for fun, but it's true: "with a trance dance, you take the risk, of a life changing experience!"

New & Future Programs

In recent years I have focused mostly on training professionals, coaches, teachers, and workshop facilitators. I have a new program about soul retrieval in the making, and I will be offering some seminars to Ecstatic Dance facilitators soon. But I love to do workshops and retreats as well, and people have been asking me about it. So ... I decided to offer the first module of the training as a retreat this December: Kundalini Trance Dance Retreat. And, since trance dancing is a very tantric practice, and there are many ways in wich these come together, I am also envisioning future programs where they will. For those who wish to explore this more deeply, stay posted.

~ event ~

Kundalini Trance Dance Retreat
A Journey into Essence, and Soul Awakening!

Full week, 7-day retreat!

This retreat is a chance, to have a life changing experience, and an opportunity to connect to ALL layers of your being. When you safely, and naturally, allow yourself to move into deeper layers of meditation and trance, you will return home… deep within.

Trance Dance
7 Chakra Journey

We will make an inner journey, in a series of trance dances, to energize different aspects of our being. Our path of discovery will be Kundalini, and we will activate each Chakra along the way.

Daily trance dances will be embedded in a larger program of meditation-, body-, breath- and soundwork, and there will be time to relax and explore nature. This retreat is hosted at Wellspring, our retreat and training accommodation in the beautiful wooded area of the Eifel, in Germany. Participation includes lodging, vegetarian meals, coffee, tea and refreshments at the breaks.

This journey inside, connecting with who you really are, at a deeper level, will bring mental clarity, healing, creativity and growth!

December 6-12, 2021
Lodging and meals: €330 - Program: €550
Sum: €880

Info & registration:
Kundalini Trance Dance Retreat

~ music ~

Pulp Fiction & The Roots of Popular Music

Sometimes the quest for music, for trance dance, brings you to unexpected places, and gets you digging into unexpectedly deep roots. It is well known that many 'popular' songs are actually 'popularized' songs, in that they are a reinvention of an older tune. Let me take you down one of these rabbit holes.

It recently struck me again that the opening title song of Pulp Fiction (1994) strikes a chord, deep within. It seemed to me that it's catchy, in a special and profound way, and I wondered. Turns out, the song is a remastered version of a 1962 song by Dick Dale, the 'King of Surf Rock', and has been popular before, as you can see in this video of Dick Dales Misirlou (1963).
It's a catchy song and melody, and there are actually many covers, remixes and versions of it. One of my favorites is it's use in Pump It (2006) by The Black Eyed Peas.

But again, digging a bit deeper, it appears that Dale introduced Misirlou to a wider audience, but his surf rock song was a contemporary version of a much older Arabic folk song. Actually, the song was born from a bet, by a young fan, that he could not play a song on only one string of his guitar. Dale's father and uncles were Lebanese-American musicians, and he remembered seeing them play Misirlou, on one string, on the oud. And so, surf rock was born!

Greek, Turkisch, Arabic, Armenian, Persian, Indian
Misirlou is a folk song from the Eastern Mediterranean region, but the song's oriental melody has been so popular, for so long, that many people, from Morocco to Iraq, claim it to be a folk song from their own country. There are versions in Greek (Μισιρλού), Turkish (Mısırlı), Arabic (مصر‎), and  Armenian. And there are even Persian, Indian and Yiddish versions of the song.

By the looks of it, the melody has origins in the Ottoman Empire, but the author is unknown. We do know that the song was popular in Arabic, Armenian, Greek and Jewish communities who settled in the United States, and that musicians were playing it there in the 1920's. The earliest known recording of the song is by the rebetiko musician Theodotos Demetriades: Miserlou (1927). Demetriades, an Ottoman Greek, who was born in Istanbul in 1897, took it to the United States in 1921.

Trance Dancing on Ancient Melodies

This journey originated in my search for music, for trance dancing, and resulted in the discovery of an ancient tune, that really resonates, and seems to be worthwhile to explore further. There are many versions of it to be found, and I can really recommend searching your familiar music databases for the title Misirlou. In the process I found a couple of nice pearls, to take along in my 'medicine bundle':

Misirlou - Oriental Jazz:
Misirlou - Santoor:
Misirlou - Remix:
Misirlou - Remix:

~ book review ~

Darkness Visible
Awakening Spiritual Light through Darkness Meditation

Paperback | 168 Pagina's | Destiny Books, november 2005
ISBN10: 1594770611 | ISBN13: 978-1594770616


It's not a coincidence that most meditations, rituals and ceremonies begin with someone saying: "please close your eyes". Originally, and in some indigenous societies still, these kind of practices begin when the sun is set, or when the temple or hut is closed, and everyone has descended into the woomb of darkness. And it's not a coincidence that we use blindfolds, a lot, in our dances.

Our fixation on the light often blinds us. Like a moth to a flame, we can't help ourselves. We forget that everything is born from the cradle of darkness. As the great creation myths of the world tell us, the true place of impregnation and fertilization is darkness. It seems to me, that although we manifest ourselves, and our ego's, in the light, we heal and transform in darkness.

Ross Heaven and Simon Buxton wrote a beautiful book about it, in which they show how the experience of total darkness, even if only for a few hours, creates remarkable clarity and mental stillness, providing a springboard for creativity, intuition and spiritual development.

Experience yourself?
December 20-24, 2021

I love it, surfing on nature's waves, and I feel blessed we could plan our special Darkness Retreat exáctly on Midwinter (winter solstice) this year!

A Magical Workshop!
A Unique Experience!

Info & registration:
Visionary Darkness Retreat

A Remix Manifesto

As we have seen in the article about the song Miserlou, culture often builds on the past. In this film, Brett Gaylor points out that, when it comes to money and ownership (intellectual property), the past always tries to control the future. Our future is becoming less free, and we must limit the control of the past, to build free and creative societies, according to Gaylor.


RiP! (2008) is a documentary film about the changing concept of copyright, and was created over a period of six years. The film features the collaborative remix work of hundreds of people, who have contributed to "the world's first open source documentary".

upcoming events:

Retreat: Kundalini Trance Dance
7-day retreat


Training: Trance Dance Facilitator Training
2-module training


Retreat: Visionary Darkness
5-day retreat

Trancedans & Transformatie
Trancedans & Transformatie

Workshop op jouw locatie? | Programma op maat? -contact>

Training & Retreat Center
Workshop on location? Tailor-made program? -contact>

Accommodation with space
and rooms for rent

Groepsverblijf met zaal en gastenkamers te huur Wellspring, Hauptstrasse 13, D-54655

Wellspring, St. Thomas,
Kyllwoud, Eifel

Anderhalf uur van Luik/Maastricht Wellspring, St. Thomas, Kyllwoud, Eifel

visit our website:
folow us on facebook: Facebook

De Geblinddoekte Danser