After eleven years living, dancing, teaching tango, and writing in Buenos Aires, I came home to L.A. in 2014, where I'm reconstructing my life.
Friday, June 04, 2010
I give to you and you give to me...true love, true love.
The more love you give away, the more you get; the more you give of yourself in tango, the more you get in return from your partner, the music and the dance. This is not to say that we should give our dance to anyone who asks; we need to choose wisely--quality over quantity--but once committed, we should not hesitate to give our all.
Which tango partner would you prefer--a giver or a taker? Do you want to dance with someone who is stingy? If it's, What's in it for me? instead of a mutual gift, chances are it won't be sublime for anyone. (Sallycat wrote a great post on The Gift in tango.)
I've noticed that folks who have generous natures and are generous of spirit, usually are generous with their time, money, help, possessions, and love. (And they have lots of "takers" as friends.)
Folks who are stingy with their money tell a lot about themselves, and are most likely also tight with everything else. Do we want friends and lovers who always avoid the check, or accept invitations without reciprocation, or are after what the other person can do for them in a relationship? Do we want stingy tango partners?
Selfish people usually have more and bigger stuff; the generous often accumulate less material things. Perhaps, though, one gets way more out of life by sharing what they have with others.
The stingy folks don't get it.
When we give, we get. It's that simple. In tango and in life. We usually get out as much as we put in, and often even more. The source is eternal, we will never run out, our love and our tango will continue to grow and fill our spirit and those of others we give it to. When we are givers we automatically become receivers. Maybe we don't finish the race with the most toys and the biggest hotels, but we finish "first" by having lived lives that matter in the community of souls we live in.
The old milonguero way is to give the woman a good experience, and when she's relaxed and happy, she in turn gives back to him. He feels like a better person and like more of a man. It works out great because it does take two to make one tango! Otherwise it's just two separate people dancing for themselves, and/or the audience, which is so not Tango.
As Ruben says, (and sometimes it sounds a bit macho when I translate in class), the woman gives her body to the man so he can make beautiful music with it, and then they are both happy.