awakening love

“The biggest coward is a man who awakens a woman’s love with no intention of loving her”- Bob Marley

This quote appeared on my facebook feeds a couple of days ago. It did something to me. (Supposedly said by Bob Marley, a signer I do love – but besides his music- I never really read much about him or his quotes).

It caught me in stillness. All my attention went to those words, in a second. I felt 100% present. I looked at the sentence again, what grasped my attention, were the words “awakening love in someone with no intention of loving”.

This happens. In every field of life. Not solely within men and women in a romantic relationship; it happens between teachers and students, masters and disciples, within ourselves. How many times have I found myself asking “Why did I do all this for?” – In a way, I was awakening my love towards something with no intention to carry it through because, who knows…

Besides these last considerations, this sentence made me reflect upon the relationship between teacher and student; I thought of the times in which  students  fall in love with the subject, but teachers do not engage further – of course, the reverse happens, students might awaken the teacher’s love with no intention to love back. I tend to favour the student in this reflection, as the teacher should know that to awaken the love for the subject in a student and deepening this love, entails knowing the art of letting go the best.

I chose Butoh, – ten thousand times-  and as such, I have those that I consider my teachers, and the dance itself as a teacher. There have been times where I have awakened the love and hid, scared and shy; there have been times where I have been awakened and abandoned; now it is a consistent awakening loving relation of many types. Both in  presence and willingness. Willing even to say “oh…cowardice is here!” and to reply to myself “well let it in and say hello, you might end up having a dance, you never know”.

I thought of my role as a facilitator of Butoh dance and realised that, when I witness participants falling into Butoh with love, curiosity, awkwardness, difficulty, when I am made witness of the awakening of their senses, coming in touch with their many bodies, and I see the stupor in front of their imagination at work, I love them even more. I love this moment. I feel so privileged. I want to love them forever. Because it is in those openings that we dance together, that we awake to one another and to the relations that surround us; we see our eyes, our lives and what it took to be here. Then, it happens, the awakening becomes a reality and life has entered yet a bit more.

Witnessing the awakening of someone’s love towards something, discloses a precious moment of human beauty.

“The biggest coward is a teacher who awakens students’ love/passions with no intention of loving them” – Ambra

Thank you for reading, Thank you for dancing


Image: unknown artist – found on

Published by ambra gatto bergamasco

Artist dancer Processual Choreographer Corporeal Dramaturg; Butoh dancer and teacher; Moving Bodies Festival Director and curator, Artistic Director of Compagnia Sperimentale Drammatica/ Espace Productions. Research: Cultural Anthropology_Urban Geography_Art and Geography_Cartography_Score_SiteSpecific_Mental Health_Humans_Ecosystems_Embodied Politics Economies of culture and culture economy

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