What Then? (Week Two: the Dreaming)

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For Week Two of our monthly Better Endings process this year, I ask you to reflect on your dreams or inner guidance with respect to a monthly personal question or quest.

I have been dreaming a lot this past two weeks since posing the question, “What Then?” In one dream a friend standing behind me introduces me to a couple of potential new friends in a new location. As I am in transition already, moving gradually to my new home in a new town for me, this seems quite likely! I took note of the appearance of the two potential new friends so I might recognize them when or if this comes about outwardly.

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Another dream shows me (from my dream journal): “approaching a space, like a hole on a white membrane, that if I were to enter, it ‘would go on forever… like a wormhole’.” It felt like a purification portal of some sort–I woke up wondering what it would mean to enter into that space and sensed it would be “transformative” and that it indicates a passage to embracing or becoming/ joining with “all that IS.”

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images are from pixabay.com

These two dreams taken together both are positive indicators that the new direction I have already embarked upon is a forward motion, advancing into new potentials. A step into an apparent void, perhaps, yet clearly full of positive potentials. The wormhole-like image felt as though to enter would be like a death or a near-death experience. Yet it was placed before me as what is next, something I must enter into, a natural passage of spiritual development even though it is a mysterious movement into a void or the Unknown.

Ready, Set, I Accept!

What are YOUR dreams telling you this week or month about some deep personal question you are contemplating? I encourage you to keep a dream journal and to review it at least once a week. I had forgotten the “wormhole” dream until reviewing my dream journal. (Interesting, though, how I used a wormhole picture in last week’s blog post when I first established my monthly quest for understanding.)

Dream On!

The Waking Dream

 

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Am I a man, dreaming I am a butterfly?
or a butterfly, dreaming I am a man?

-Lao Tzu

Life is like a dream, truly! Waking and sleeping are simply different states of consciousness. When you think of the outer or waking life as like a dream, this can help you to recognize that the same principles that operate in the dream state are also happening ‘out here.’  The dreamlike images or symbols you see in your day to day life can offer guidance for some action or direction to take. (Btw the best book I have found about this is The Art of Spiritual Dreaming, by Harold Klemp.)  So when you are pondering a meaningful question, look around you to recognize serendipitous outer signs and guidance. These are waking dreams.

I remember once, long ago in Arizona when I was a grad student there, I got angry one day. Almost immediately after fuming for a bit, I sat on and broke my eyeglasses. Immediately I saw that was a waking dream showing me how my anger was distorting my vision or perspective. This was a wake-up call. I corrected my viewpoint, quickly!

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So for this second week of the monthly process for this blog this year, I invite you to pay attention to outer signs or waking dreams to help you understand and find answers to one deep question you are considering this month.

My question this month is about how I can revitalize my writing activity. My waking dream is a quote I saw in a recent horoscope: “There is a part of you that isn’t your body, your words, your thoughts, or your feelings. This part of you is doing something mysterious and exciting!”

Reflection:

I usually have been so driven with regards to my writing. Lately I am in a cocoon-realizing that publishing my recent book (see right panel to order YOUR LIFE PATH!) was only a first step and does not of itself accomplish my purpose without more effort on my part to “get it out there.” When I move again (beginning in February and completing by June) I will resettle into the process for continuing this process and completing the second book in the Life Path series. For now I must be content to fulfill my current responsibilities with teaching and preparing for the move.

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How about you? What are you pondering this month? Look around you for waking dreams that can bring solutions, guidance and understanding.

I welcome YOUR STORY and Comments!

Dreamin’

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Last week I invited you to state a personal question for the month to explore by reflecting on your dreams, your inner guidance, and outer ‘signs’ or synchronicity (waking dreams). Please review your question again or develop one now. This week, I invite you to reflect on your question by posing your question inwardly to invoke nighttime dreams about your topic, and/or to review and reflect upon your recent dreams that are relevant to your question.

For my part, second week posts will include some dream tips as well as modeling from my own process and experiences.

Dream Tip:  A.C.T. on your dreams! To me this means: 1) ASK for (and then ACCESS or record) dreams that are relevant to your personal question. Then 2) CONSIDER or CONTEMPLATE the messages from the relevant dreams you receive. And 3) TAKE ACTION based on the dream’s message as you understand it, to manifest positive personal growth and development.

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Dreams are our personal inner laboratory for exploring any question, principle, or choice we may have as well as being a fertile, unlimited field for exploring the inner landscape of the Cosmos!

Example: My own question for this month is about how I can revitalize my writing activity and move forward with that creative and service oriented process despite being overburdened with responsibilities and necessary new home mortgage procedures (I will be moving again, gradually from Feb 1 til July, and meanwhile moving back and forth between two residences as of Feb 1.) This week I am asking for dreams and reviewing my dream journal (Tip 2: Always keep a dream journal and review it often.)

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I have kept a dream journal (within a larger journal usually) since I was twenty.  I know that when I do have a pressing personal question, reviewing my dream journal will always throw light upon that question because I know we mull over our deep questions inwardly sometimes even before we are consciously aware of the importance of a challenge or issue we are pondering.

Some dream journal entries relevant to my question:

8/12/18 [just after relocation]: Dreamed of worry over future employment and service potentials after graduating from grad school [as though I just had left college]. I know this represents my lifelong concern over making a difference: ‘What difference does it make?’ or settling into a life with a lack of creative productivity.

8/18/18: An adventure dream –in story form– Russell Crowe as the older and me as the younger Self. We stop by a room with xmas decorations we have set up, en route to some upcoming activity. I see someone else, a friend from from my past, will be involved with that upcoming activity.

8/27/18: Dream of presenting a partially completed manuscript to  an advisor–thinking it was in good form but open it and it is like a seafood gumbo: a miasma! So, it is back to work.

1/6/2019: See a lady in white going before me and to left along a trail going upwards, carrying a large pine branch. I follow humbly and am grateful.

This morning (1/9/19): Mulling over a question about how to proceed forward and am shown this  “hole” on a white field, that sucks in like a whirlpool drain in a sink…maybe a wormhole! But as I contemplate whether to dive into it (as being proposed inwardly for me to do), I have a fear because I am told the “It goes on forever!” My fear is that everything I have ever been, known, or done will be dissolved, and if it goes on forever, how will I ever emerge to have any solid reality ever again? (on waking, think the message is that this positive, needed leap of faith is to be very deeply TRANSFORMATIVE!)

REFLECTION/ INTERPRETATIONS : 

Two of the dreams show a higher (or elder) and a younger (or outer) Self, or a Guide I am learning from or following. That Higher Self/ Guide is blazing a trail or helping me with my creative and spiritual ambitions. The pine branch means clearing a pathway forward (and now I see the lady in white possibly as my current realtor who has found my next location, a great space for writing!) The future is about transformation and will require dropping the past…plunging into the void of new experience!

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images are from pixabay.com

So, dear Better Endings reader, go forth! Review or start a new dream journal for this year’s process and ask/ write out your question inwardly, then review your Dreams.

I welcome YOUR Story, Questions, and Comments!

Threshold Guardians

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After Heeding the Call and setting forth with your well-considered Departure, you are set to approach the first Threshold so you can Cross the Threshold into the full engagement with your Adventure to achieve your Quest. But wait! It is not quite so easy as that.  Approaching the Threshold of a deeply  significant transition or a personally meaningful adventure invokes Threshold Guardians!  Only if you can pass by these daunting agencies or meet challenges designed to strengthen your weaknesses will you in fact step across that Threshold better equipped to meet your challenges successfully and realize your dreams.

Threshold Guardians are common archetypal character forms found in many a mythic tale.  The Never-Ending Story represents them as monolithic, winged Gargoyle figures guarding the entryway to  Bastian‘s destination. He must pass their enigmatic questioning in order to rescue his Princess and prevent the Nothing from spreading to annihilate all of his mythical world.  Scylla and Charybdis are rocky shoals that block Odysseus’s path to complete his Quest and return to home to Ithaka in Homer’s Ulysses. Dorothy faces winged monkeys sent by the Wicked Witch to deter her progress.  So then, what are some of your own Threshold Guardians and how have they served you or how can they aid you in completing your own mythic Quest?

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Boundary Gremlins

In Your Life Path (see sidebar), I will share a story about a significant dream from a few years ago in which I visited a ‘high altitude’  region inhabited by beautiful winged horses which I felt served God-realized Masters in the far reaches of the Heavens. As I approached the boundary of their realm, excited to witness this, suddenly Gremlins appeared! Honestly I had never even known what gremlins might look like until after I woke from this dream, but there they were: little, broad faced imps with huge ears. They popped up along the boundary to prevent me from stepping into this rarifed realm of the Horses of Heaven.

Recognizing that these Gremlins were doing their own valuable work in this realm I had stumbled upon in my dreaming, I stepped back and knelt down at a respectful distance from the boundary. I felt grateful to have witnessed this realm at all and content to just be there for a moment. The Gremlins were not apparent then but I knew they would pop up again if I were to try to advance.

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images are from pixabay.com

Behind me in this heightened inner realm, two winged Pegasus horses arrived, returning from their heavenly missives. One, white-pink-bluish, knelt gracefully onto her front legs beside me. I knew this was her invitation, and so I climbed up onto her bare back and held lightly onto a shock of her white mane as she stepped across the Threshold of the boundary into her domain.

I woke immediately, humbled and deeply impressed by this encounter with the Horses of Heaven! I realized the Gremlins were Threshold Guardians.  I needed great purity of heart, deep humility in order to venture into this sacred realm.

What or Who Are Your Threshold Guardians?

Your Threshold Guardians will be appropriate to the Quest and to the Threshold you aim to cross so you can achieve your own heroic purpose. I invite you to share YOUR story of Threshold Guardians. What qualities do they help you better master in order to advance to realize your Purpose?

A Portal to Other Dimensions

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Blogging has been a great blessing to me in and of itself. I thank all of you who are reading these posts. They have become for me a new kind of journaling as a conversation with Self and Spirit (including the spirit in You). This year’s process of combining positive life metaphors with monthly archetypal profiles and dialogues has been truly alchemical for me already, as conducting these blog posts engages me in deeper connections with my own archetypal inner assembly.

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This week’s pairing of the metaphor Life is But a Dream with the archetypal orientation of Teacher has opened a portal to a profound realization for me, so I hope some of you will also apply the techniques to arrive at your own realizations.  What I have realized this week is how the recognition of “life is a dream” provides access to other dimensional levels of awareness!

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Here’s an example. Last Saturday night after putting up the blog about The Learner–where I dialogued with Rumi as an inner Teacher–I had a dream in which I was simply petting my cat in bed, yet when I looked I saw that the cat I was petting was neither Loki nor Emily (my living cats), but it was Arthur, my cat friend that I lost to dental surgery a few months ago. Not just that, but this form of Arthur that I was petting was a little lion cub! His hair was bristly to the touch and he had a short mane forming. The reason this is significant is because I had ‘felt’ after Arthur passed that he may have been in this life here to protect his petite sister Emily, and that he was meant to go on after this life to become a lion in the veld. Arthur, you see, never seemed to me to be fully happy as a domesticated house cat; he was always more the loner type of feline, except for his dinner tidbits and delightful brushings that he could not resist!

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So perhaps Arthur came back within my dream state for some loving attention that he remembers from me as he is “now” in a wild lion embodiment.  Never mind about dimensions or time frames being simultaneous since time is an Illusion.  My personal insight is that because I recognize that this waking life is as much a ‘dream’ as is the substance of a nightly or daydream, this very awareness opens a portal BETWEEN these alter-dimensions. That is, there is less of a divide and rather a continuum of consciousness that you can shift between, seamlessly.

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I am grateful. Arthur, you are welcome in my universe of consciousness, any time!

I welcome YOUR insights and stories!

Alchemical Pairing: Metaphor Plus Archetype

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Life is a Golden Opportunity, as an envisioning metaphor, reminds me of the concept of Emptiness expressed in the Tao Te Ching:

Chapter 11 of the Tao Te Ching:  

  Thirty spokes unite at one hub to make a wheel, But what is missing makes it useful.

Clay is shaped into a bowl,
But it is the empty space that makes it useful.

Cut out doors and windows make a room,
But its empty space makes it useful.

So, what is there is beneficial –
But what is not there makes things useful.

From the unknown the known emerges; from an appreciation of infinite potential, all is possible.

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So allow me to explain further what this new year at Life Paths for Better Endings aims to provide for you. Week One of every month I will present a positive Life Path Metaphor which we will explore and that you can contemplate in relation to your own life.  Week Two presents a relevant monthly Archetypal character image based on Dr. Charles Bebeau’s approach to archetypal psychology which he derived from Sumerian mythology and astrology.  Week Three–beginning in December–will invite you to combine the monthly Life Metaphor with the monthly archetype in such fashion as to consider how you can harness the character Strengths of this Archetypal Ally in realizing the positive potentials of the monthly Life Metaphor. At this stage you will be combining two “elements,” one conceptual/schematic (the affirmative Life Metaphor) and the other personal, based on the ‘personal unconscious’ architecture of your own Psyche in Carl Jung’s or James Hillman’s terms. Then, in Week Four every month, this blog will explore results from combining these elements, both in our own lives and in popular stories, mythology, or in the universe at large.

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In other words, each month I will be inviting you to engage an alchemical sort of psychological pairing process, bringing positively oriented Life Metaphors into conjunction with Archetypal Ally energies to help you develop understandings about your own Better Endings potentials. So then, Life is a Golden Opportunity; it offers the opportunity to fashion something “golden” out of the raw materials of present conditions in relation to your goals and Dreams.

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This monthly process was made more clear to me last Sunday night, while I was contemplating by using Life is a Golden Opportunity as a mantra in relation to my own life. Knowing that the November archetype I will be presenting for you next week is The Descender, I asked inwardly of my own inner guidance to be shown how my own Descender energy might align with this month’s Golden Opportunity metaphor. In my dreaming that night I was shown how the most deeply challenging situations and relationships in my life have offered the greatest opportunities for learning and for personal growth or development. Rather than avoiding those situations that tend to bring out ‘the worst’ in myself or in others I am placed in association with, if I embrace the opportunity for growth and new awareness, I can change how I deal with such situations and TRANSFORM the conditions underlying that situation altogether.

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To be clearer with you about what my dream revealed, it showed me seated between two people who are so different in outlook and personality from me that we have generally irritated one another to such an extent that for over 15-20 years we have chosen to simply avoid one another altogether, “giving space.” No overt problem due to our avoidance, but in my dream I came to understand that these few uncomfortable relationships are spiritually neither accidental nor meaningless. Being positioned in relation to people with extremely opposing philosophical or theoretical outlooks on life offers me a tremendously “golden opportunity.” If I can transform these relationships, by expressing an authentic, genuine interest in these persons’ outlooks and sharing openly from my own for them, we could all potentially reach a higher state of ‘balance;’ see?  By combining disparate elements–viewpoints in this case–in new ways, the opportunity for genuine growth in my own outlook is possible. I can free myself from an attachment to a narrower outlook by opening to the ‘antithetical’ expression of a counter-perspective, arriving at a new order of Synthesis.  This can induce a metaphorically alchemical sort of psychological transformation! My Descender is a part of me that avoids conflicting relationships, rather than confronting or embracing them.  But now, I can be more open to changing these relations, to ACCEPTING the golden opportunities they offer.

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Next then, this Sunday, I will introduce The Descender to you! Meanwhile, I invite you to continue to ponder about how Life is YOUR Golden Opportunity, day by day, moment by moment, with every situation and relationship you encounter.

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I invite and will share each of your insights, comments, and stories.

 

Are You a Dreamer? (Your Dream Laboratory)

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I have always thought that cultures should recognize and nurture Dreamers and give them a valued role. I’ve written a science fiction novel (which sits on my shelf and in computer files) which is Book I of a trilogy I call The Dawnbreakers, all about this. On the remote, terraformed planetoid of Guvral, Dream Arhat (Teacher) Benath trains young people who show an aptitude for becoming Dreamers. He teaches the Art of Dreaming. The Dreamers develop their gifts of prophecy, of inner sight for healing and for manifesting creative ideas, and of telepathic communication.   Separated from their home Grand Spiral federation for over 60 years, the majority of people on Guvral have given up on their dreams, however, and the Dream Temple Benath operates is in jeopardy. Mogren, a Science & Technology consul, aims to dismantle all remnants of the spiritually founded Grand Spiral ideology and its dream-based theocratic governance. One young Dreamer, Jenu, tells his best friend and fellow Dream student Kairn about dreams he is having about an Inner Dream Guide who accompanies Jenu as he visits another remote planetary colony of their federation, hitherto unknown to Guvraleans.  Kairn develops a plan for a cadre of Benath’s Dream Temple students to launch a mission to the stars to find this planet so they can revitalize and reconstitute their Grand Spiral ways.

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At the end of Book I, the Dawnbreakers cadre barely escapes capture as Mogren’s forces try to prevent Kairn and Jenu’s mission to the stars. Book II transpires mainly in the Void of interstellar space as the cadre hops from planet to planet (by means of “photosonic transduction”), seeking the prophesied sister colony.  Jenu begins doubting his visions, the crew nearly mutinees, and the technology begins to fail so that it appears the Dreamers will become stranded in space, when suddenly they do find the orange-white banded planet of Jenu’s dreams . There on Sadhan, a colony of Grand Spiral refugees has developed a Dream Temple centered around teaching telepathic communication and teleportation skills. They had contacted Dreamers on remote colonies telepathically to draw only those worthy of training to join their cause. In Book III Jenu stays at Sadhan to train, while Kairn and most of the rest of the original Dawnbreakers along with some representatives from Sadhan return to Guvral, where a quasi-religious millenarian group awaits their return as an underground movement opposing Mogren’s harsh new regime.  Kairn’s crew, however, is intercepted immediately upon landing on Guvral by Mogren’s forces, so that most of Book III involves Kairn’s group aiming to escape the harsh imprisonment and “Reeducation” program that Mogren imposes. I won’t share the ending; suffice to say it involves Jenu appearing in his Light Body from Sadhan to help deliver Kairn’s group from imprisonment so that all of Guvral can celebrate the return of the Dawnbreakers and the rise of a new cycle of growth and spiritual unfoldment on Guvral; okay, so there it is then!

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Some day I aim to complete the writing and to publish this trilogy. For now, though, I share the story just to ask you: Are You a Dreamer? For those of you who answer Yes, what does this mean to you? How have you learned to rely on your dreams for Inner Guidance, prophecy, healing, or inner communication? What dream techniques have you developed for lucid dreaming and how have you come to use dreaming as an inner laboratory to help you understand and apply your insights to any outward situation and to your own deepest life mission and spiritual Quest?

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Now I want to add: we/you can ALL be Dreamers! Sometimes “lucid dreaming” is held up as some sort of secret, arcane, privileged ability. Often this approach sees lucid dreaming as a way of controlling one’s own reality—and sometimes that of others. This latter is the darker potential shade of ‘lucid dreaming’ depicted in some science fiction stories—like the recent Invictus and somewhat in Ursula Le Guin’s earlier and masterful The Lathe of Heaven.

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Give yourself more faith and credit than ever before! You do not need to rely on others when it comes to dreaming. You can learn to unlock the secrets of your own unconscious wealth of inner awareness. It is your right and your divine heritage to unfold your Inner Awareness to unlimited heights.

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Last time I shared about a series of Bear dreams wherein I learned to re-own my Strengths instead of foisting them upon others. Well, in the final dream of this series the whole mechanics of dreaming revealed itself! I had climbed a pine tree (axis mundi linking the Above with the Below) to evade a graceful Mother Bear and her cub who were chasing after me. When I reached the top of the pine tree, I stepped across into a LABORATORY space. A female scientist was working with chemistry tubes there (Alchemical!). She handed me a beaker that I drank a potion from, and suddenly I knew just what to do. I stepped back into the tree and looked down at the ascending cub and her Mother. Easily and gently, I removed a few strips of bark from the tree and dropped them toward the Bears. The cub dropped off to the ground immediately and then the Mother Bear also released her grip on the tree and she dropped gracefully down to the ground, not to return. This was the last dream of this theme I have had, from a few years ago.  It showed me that I can always find answers inwardly to the questions I have about how to proceed in life! The value of lucid dreaming—which ANYONE can learn to develop on their own—is that if you can ‘control’ what happens in a nightly dream, then you can also change or better manage this OUTER DREAM, as well!

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I welcome YOUR stories , your own best Dream Practices, and Comments!

Finish A Dream: Your Goal Fulfilled

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(Re-blogged from The CrazyBagLady@BulanLifestyle)

Some twenty years ago I dreamed I was hiking along a high mountain trail. Several others were also on a trek to reach the top of this peak. It was a hard trail with a steep, rocky incline in hot weather that seared the skin. Many turned back; only a handful reached the top, singly. I was among these, arriving at the apex after a long, winding ascent.

Finally at the top, I see there is a canyon chasm between the edge of the mountainside I have scaled and what I know to be my true destination: an even higher peak separated from the one I am on by a huge divide.

At first I believe I may be able to cross, for there are steps, suspended in space, hovering between the two peaks. One of the other climbers starts across these floating steps, but they become narrower and further apart as the aspirant attempts to bridge the gulf. He turns back, returns; the steps drop into the gorge as he steps back onto the ledge at the top of the canyon.

The others leave, descending back down the mountain. I stay, alone, gazing across to the realm I desire to reach. I am passionately aware that I have worked so hard to reach this plateau, only to find my deepest goal seemingly impossible to attain.

There is a picnic table at the canyon edge. I sit at the table, not wanting to give up, not knowing how I can go forward. A woman appears and comes over to stand next to me at the table. She seems an Ancient one, yet ageless. She has salt-and-pepper hair, dark eyes, light skin—she reminds me of a person I know to be highly enlightened in my outer life.

“How can I ever get over there?” I implore of this woman whom I know to be a Guide.

“How would you get to another planet?” she replies.

Then, I am alone again; the Guide has disappeared.

I awaken in bed, bemused by the dream, saddened to learn it “was only a dream”. It felt so real, like I was finally “almost There,” to the fulfillment of a spiritual Quest.

Now, many years later, I recall this dream. The feelings are still potent, the desire as ardent as it was then.

I sit for contemplation, return to the picnic table AS IF I have never left.

“How would I travel to another planet?” I ask inwardly, suddenly aware of the obvious solution.

“Direct projection,” I utter in silence. Assume the destination-state accomplished; be-here-Now.

I walk to the edge of the cliff, sit tailor fashion; appreciate the rarified atma-sphere, quiet serenity. I close my eyes, open inwardly, sing a mantra syllable as pure as the air is high: Hu. I become this Sound, resonate with its pulse as a warm, glowing Light.

I open my Heart to just BE. Feel… SHIFT.

Colorful Art Background

Open eyes: a Temple nestled in a misty enclave. Light forms come and go from round platforms surrounding a domed spire. Blues in magenta, iced in golds and white.

Approach. Friendly beings exchange silent greetings as we pass. Enter temple—Door always open, an archway. Inside is still open space, nature, gardens, rooms that appear as I imagine a purpose: library, classroom, stables with horses. I explore, unlimited. See a fountain, sit at a gossamer bench around it, close eyes to listen to the Flow.

Open eyes: sitting tailor fashion, looking across the Canyon. See? A picnic table, across the gulf, far from where I AM.

************

               Complete a dream according to your deepest desire. Imagine life as you assume it to Be, your Heart and Soul fulfilled.                 – lw

Finish A Dream: Your Goal Fulfilled

4-elsa-follouw-your-dreams

(Re-blogged from The CrazyBagLady@BulanLifestyle)

Some twenty years ago I dreamed I was hiking along a high mountain trail. Several others were also on a trek to reach the top of this peak. It was a hard trail with a steep, rocky incline in hot weather that seared the skin. Many turned back; only a handful reached the top, singly. I was among these, arriving at the apex after a long, winding ascent.

Finally at the top, I see there is a canyon chasm between the edge of the mountainside I have scaled and what I know to be my true destination: an even higher peak separated from the one I am on by a huge divide.

At first I believe I may be able to cross, for there are steps, suspended in space, hovering between the two peaks. One of the other climbers starts across these floating steps, but they become narrower and further apart as the aspirant attempts to bridge the gulf. He turns back, returns; the steps drop into the gorge as he steps back onto the ledge at the top of the canyon.

The others leave, descending back down the mountain. I stay, alone, gazing across to the realm I desire to reach. I am passionately aware that I have worked so hard to reach this plateau, only to find my deepest goal seemingly impossible to attain.

There is a picnic table at the canyon edge. I sit at the table, not wanting to give up, not knowing how I can go forward. A woman appears and comes over to stand next to me at the table. She seems an Ancient one, yet ageless. She has salt-and-pepper hair, dark eyes, light skin—she reminds me of a person I know to be highly enlightened in my outer life.

“How can I ever get over there?” I implore of this woman whom I know to be a Guide.

“How would you get to another planet?” she replies.

Then, I am alone again; the Guide has disappeared.

I awaken in bed, bemused by the dream, saddened to learn it “was only a dream”. It felt so real, like I was finally “almost There,” to the fulfillment of a spiritual Quest.

Now, many years later, I recall this dream. The feelings are still potent, the desire as ardent as it was then.

I sit for contemplation, return to the picnic table AS IF I have never left.

“How would I travel to another planet?” I ask inwardly, suddenly aware of the obvious solution.

“Direct projection,” I utter in silence. Assume the destination-state accomplished; be-here-Now.

I walk to the edge of the cliff, sit tailor fashion; appreciate the rarified atma-sphere, quiet serenity. I close my eyes, open inwardly, sing a mantra syllable as pure as the air is high: Hu. I become this Sound, resonate with its pulse as a warm, glowing Light.

I open my Heart to just BE. Feel… SHIFT.

Colorful Art Background

Open eyes: a Temple nestled in a misty enclave. Light forms come and go from round platforms surrounding a domed spire. Blues in magenta, iced in golds and white.

Approach. Friendly beings exchange silent greetings as we pass. Enter temple—Door always open, an archway. Inside is still open space, nature, gardens, rooms that appear as I imagine a purpose: library, classroom, stables with horses. I explore, unlimited. See a fountain, sit at a gossamer bench around it, close eyes to listen to the Flow.

Open eyes: sitting tailor fashion, looking across the Canyon. See? A picnic table, across the gulf, far from where I AM.

************

               Complete a dream according to your deepest desire. Imagine life as you assume it to Be, your Heart and Soul fulfilled.                 – lw

How to Use Your Dreams for Better Endings–Just Ask!

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As an example of how you can use dreaming to bring about Better Endings, allow me to share about a time in my life when dreaming was fundamental in helping me to make a major life move. I grew up “back East” (from a Colorado perspective!): in Ohio, Pennsylvania and then upper western New York. My family lived near Niagara Falls when I was in high school and then I went to college in Buffalo for my bachelors and Masters degrees; so I lived in the eastern part of the country for my first 25 years, from 1954 to 1979.

After my Masters, I wanted to go on for a doctorate in Anthropology, and I had become particularly fascinated with the Southwest and Southwest Native American cultures from my Masters studies in Linguistics while in Buffalo. I took a wonderful cross-country bus trip with a friend to visit Sedona and Phoenix, Arizona, and after that I decided to apply for my graduate studies at Arizona State University. I was accepted into their graduate program, and that’s when my whole life was about to take a major shift, not only of location—Eastern to Western states—but to a fundamentally new way of being, for me, apart from my family and friendships I had forged in New York. “Going West” was a huge shift for someone whose whole family hailed from the Eastern states. So, I had to go through a major shift in perspective in order to accept this major life move. To do so, I turned to my dreaming.

Every night for over a year while I finished my Masters thesis and began to prepare for ‘the Big Move’ to Arizona, I sat for a ½ hour to 2 hour contemplation in my bedroom in Buffalo, and then went to sleep, to dream. Each night I framed a question that I would aim to receive an answer for in the contemplation or in my dreams that night. My questions all had to do with the upcoming move. For example, was I crazy to make such a huge relocation, from East to West, or shouldn’t I just give up on this wild adventure scheme and stay ‘Home’? I was going to drive my red Buick Special convertible; wasn’t red going to be too hot for Arizona? I was taking along my beloved cat, Chela; could she make such a long car trip? And, would I meet any ‘real’ new friends in ‘cowboy country’ (or again, maybe I should stay home in my ‘comfort zone’, after all!)

It was amazing, really, in retrospect. The technique was much like Jung’s nightly experiences with “active imagination” that he wrote of in his journal, The Red Book (check out this link for Jung’s images!). Every night in contemplation I would pose a question like those above that mainly challenged whether I could or should make such a huge transition, and afterwards, every night I would ‘be given’ a lucid dream that very clearly answered that specific question in the form of very direct and unmistakable inner guidance.  I was addressing my questions in contemplation to a spiritual Inner Guide, and he was helping me every step of the way, probably because without such clear answers, I would have found it harder to make this major change in consciousness that, spiritually, I really did need to make in order to move forward in my life.

When I complained that my car was red (How could I take a red car to Arizona?), that night in my dreams I was taken to a hotel in Phoenix (I later learned it was a Ramada Inn that really exists there!). This hotel has a rotating restaurant at the top. I was taken to that overview where I looked down at the parking lot. Guess what? It was FULL of red cars!

When I complained how could my precious cat endure such a long road trip, that night I was shown myself and her taking the trip. I was driving a big van that had a PIANO in the back! Over the piano was a quilted comforter, and stretched out in pure comfort along the piano top—with soft music playing—was, yes, you guessed correctly; my cat friend, Chela!

But would I meet any real friends? I was shown that night a truly prophetic dream revealing four specific persons whom I later met and recognized when I met them from that night of dreaming! One became my good friend whom I later married for 3 years, Franco. Another became a best friend and graduate school cohort for several years. Another would be my PhD advisor, Betsy. And the fourth became somewhat of a personal spiritual advisor while I was in Phoenix.

But, did I really have to make this trip? Would I be happy? Two dreams followed from those two questions. In the first, I was shown that there would be hard times to endure but they would be necessary for my spiritual unfoldment. In the second, I was walking with my Grandmother along a Phoenix city street. There was happiness in the air as I sang a lilting tune which I awoke with: “I’m leaving; But there are a few doors left to close, before I get over there!” For the rest of the year before I made the Big Move, I sang this song daily, in the morning at the university where I was teaching English and at night. I was leaving. I did clear up whatever remaining business I had in Buffalo before I could go.

When I reached Phoenix, these dreams had prepared me perfectly for all that was to come. Things went smoothly, and I learned what I needed to learn along the way. After only one night of tears when I realized I really had separated from all I had ever known, I adjusted rapidly and undertook one of the most significant and edifying phases of my life.

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Have you had this sort of “tandem” relationship with your Dreams? As an explanation of the method I used that you can use, too; it can be summed up very simply: Just Ask!

I would love to hear about your insights and experiences too! Feel free to comment and share YOUR stories!

Change Your Dreams, Change Your Life!

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Dreaming.  What a mysterious, profound topic. We speak of dreaming as a state of consciousness producing visual activity while our bodies are in R.E.M. sleep. We also speak of our Dreams, as goals we strive to achieve. Day-dreams are flights of the imagination we take while awake, that may help us to envision the fulfillment of our desires and can help us problem-solve in a non-directive way.  Thomas Edison reportedly never really slept; he took catnaps for around twenty minutes at a time to stimulate his creativity and productive dream activity. Lucid dreams allow us to be aware while we are dreaming in a manner that can help us achieve visionary truths, prophetic visions, or to answer questions we are striving to understand. And some speak of “waking dreams” as a form of synchronicity: when an outer event or situation can be interpreted as one would interpret a meaningful dream symbol; bearing a meaningful message.

I dreamed I was a butterfly, flitting around in the sky;

then I awoke.

Now I wonder: Am I a man who dreamt of being a butterfly,

or am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man?

                                                                                                                                – Zhuangzi

Zhuangzi’s famous riddle reveals a paradox about dreaming. This paradox unifies all of the facets of dreaming mentioned above. If our outer life is as much of a dream as our nightly dreams, which quantum physics and many mystical religious traditions tell us it is, what does that mean for us in terms of what we can do with dreams to fashion “Better Endings”…(or, not)?  Dreaming—whether in our waking life or while ‘sleeping’—is imaginative and constructive. It can allow us to also “de-construct” what might only appear to be fixed or predictable. If we can DREAM something, we can in one manner or another bring that dream into our Reality.

Have you ever awakened from a nighttime dream and felt disturbed about how it ended (or you awoke before it was complete)? One very effective “dreamwork” technique you can use is to go back into that dream and either finish it as you would prefer for it to end, or change the ending! So, here is a connection to our principle of Better Endings. Dreams are the very fabric that our lives are made of. Since you are ultimately the Dreamer of your own life circumstances and conditions, this means that with free will and focused imagination and creativity, you can create the life of your dreams. Well, we do anyway, so we might as well aim to fashion the life we choose to live. Working with our dreams—outer ones and inner ones—brings amazing opportunities. If we can change how an ‘inner dream’ ends, by means of our creative imagination, we can also bring about Better Endings in outer circumstances and conditions, here and now. I do not mean to say that everything is possible, since the conditions we have already created in our lives due to longstanding habits or even genetic predispositions will not quickly or easily “dissolve” just because we dream that they will. Even so, envisioning more positive conditions may lead us to insights or practitioners that can help us to heal or change our habits over time. We are still subject to the constraints of the world we are in, but we can always effect changes in our conditions and attitudes.

This week I invite you to DREAM of Better Endings! And as always, I welcome all of your insights and stories! Poems, random thoughts, artwork, lyrics…all are INVITED!