When Letting Go Helps You Hold On Better

“Suspense seldom kills, but too often 
stretched between the hooks, the cloth 
drying in the sun so its weave might be straightened 
rips in one section and the whole taut fabric, 
so like a riveted drumskin or the canvas of a trampoline, 
goes slack, its practical use over– 
that anxiety which kept us searching the heavens, 
wringing our hands, wiping our brows, 
questioning the outcome, 
only a matter of tension: that intangible 
way of holding things we’d just as soon let go.”

~Dick Allen (On Tenterhooks)

Yesterday marked six years since my first Capoeira Batizado. Batizado literally means “baptism”. It is an initiation ceremony wherein a new student plays against a more advanced student, in order to develop the former’s Capoeira game. The Batizado welcomes new students into the school and community, forms new bonds and strengthens old ones. New students are baptized officially and receive their first cordão (cord), while advanced students receive a change in cordão depending on their level of progress. Troca de cordão literally means “change in cord” – student capoeiristas receive a change in cord by having to play against a mestre (Master capoeirista) , and earn the right to wear  a new cord.

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Letting go of any anxiety and diving into the game. Playing against an advanced student, under the watch of the mestre.
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Receiving my first ever cord – cordão verde – after a successful initiation

Tenterhooks

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