Wisdom Comes Dancing

Wisdom Comes Dancing

Wisdom Comes Dancing: 

Selected Writings of Ruth St. Denis 

on Dance, Spirituality and the Body

Edited and with an introduction by Kamae A Miller

In Wisdom Comes Dancing Ruth St. Denis provides inspiration to help us reconnect to our own creative expression of the sacred, to the earth’s many spiritual traditions, and to the dance of life within each of us.

At the turn of the 20th century, St. Denis had a vision of a new form of dance, with its roots in the past but its expansive ideas firmly in the present. She gave birth to this new form in the theater but designed it to be a communi-cation on a spiritual level. St. Denis’ students, Martha Graham, Doris Humphreys, and Charles Weidman, took the life-giving substance of inspiration from their mentor’s hands, molded it in ever-expanding ways, and created contemporary modern dance.

Throughout her long life, Ruth St. Denis wrote poetry, essays, and talks to express her unique vision of creativity, spirituality, and women’s wisdom. Because she was always ahead of her time, both a prophet and pioneer, it is only now for the first time that we can hear and appreciate St. Denis’ clear, passionate voice on:

  • The relationship of art and the sacred
  • The holiness of the body
  • A woman’s vision of spirituality and religion
  • Art as a force for peace and justice in the world
  • The integration of female and male within the personality
  • Love as the driving force of humanity
  • The possibility for every human, regardless of age or ability, to worship the sacred through movement


“Ruth St. Denis’ writings artiulate the mysticism inherent in her devotion to dance and her belief in humanity’s ability to attain enlightment…exalted prose and poetry…”

Library Journal

“Miss Ruth opened a door and I saw into life. I worshipped everything about Miss Ruth-how she walked, how she danced. Miss Ruth was everything to me.”

Martha Graham

“Ruth St. Denis has the faculty of drawing music and dance right out of the cosmos, out of the heart of God.”

— Samuel L Lewis, founder of the Dances of Universal Peace

PeaceWorks Publications 1997.

ISBN 0-915424-14-2