Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water
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The long trek to the remote village has exhausted the group. The backpacks grew heavy as they walked for miles in the woods. They had all come to be part of a writers’ retreat designed to spark creativity. The accommodations in the country were intended to take the group away from day to day concerns in order to concentrate on writing. Most of them came from big cities and were not accustomed to primitive conditions. They were told they would need to pump water and carry wood, but this sounded more romantic at the time than it was when they started scouting for fire wood in the wet forrest. The rain had drenched the woods, so all the wood was too wet to start a fire. They had no wilderness skills, and were weary and wasted before they even started the weekend. The emotions were tightly wound before they even saw the bunk beds in the attic where they would sleep, dormitory style.
On Saturday morning they awoke to find no staff at the summerhouse. There was a sign left on the screen door that said, “We have gone to town. Now you go to town.” This naturally infuriated the writers who had come to be taught some kind of creative trick to unlock their talent. “Go to town? What the hell does THAT mean?” Left to their own devices, they scattered into space to figure out what to do. Sitting under the shade of a large oak tree Emily spotted Eric. He was wearing a velvet coat, leaning against the trunk of the tree, casually smoking a pipe. She approached him with caution, but when she clearly saw his handsome face she was instantly smitten by this stranger in the woods. She wondered why he was so calm, cool, and dressed like a person from a different century. He explained that these woods are haunted with the ghosts of writers who never pushed themselves beyond their limits. They are the real ghost writers. They can never be free because they dissed their muse while they were alive.
When Emily awoke back in New England in the 21st century she knew she had just met destiny in a dream. Her muse, Eric, would be her greatest asset, and it did not matter that nobody else could see him. He was hers alone. He faithfully pushed her to work with words every day. Their tryst was a gift from the creative creator of creation, and would last forever and ever.
Your dreams are personal and they arise from the collective unconscious as well as your own. We all share a foundation of unknown mythology that our ancestors built into our beliefs. We share, and sometimes rebel against, cultural practices and teachings. To deeply analyze our own psychological types dream work is necessary. The setting and the characters portrayed in dreams are metaphorical players in our spiritual lives. Deeper understanding of our own unconscious leads to better understanding and appreciation for all of life.
There has been an attempt to hijack the word dream and turn it into a house or a car, or that illusive American Dream. The big consumer consciousness promotes purchases of certain items in order to fulfill a dream. It also spotlights outer image as the key to dreaminess. I think it is important to note that marketing experts use the personality types to design ad campaigns and sales persons use them to craft the appropriate pitch for the prospect. The archetype technique is being used strategically to manipulate you and your dreams. If you submit willingly you will buy a lot of stuff with dubious dream fulfillment. Take the reigns, gentle reader. Design your own dreamscapes and accept no substitutes.
Remembering and studying dreams can bring insight directly, and later through contemplation. Flying dreams are interpreted as liberation, although Sigmund Freud considered the flying to be representative of sexual release. Floating dreams are indicative of a total acceptance. Floating is representative of great success through calm and unresisting nature. Struggling to stay afloat either in dreams or in waking life has the effect of disturbing the surface of the water, indicating problems.
I have seen confidence grow significantly when fear of water is conquered and the skill of floating is mastered. Knowing how to stay afloat in water essentially improves our chances of survival. Appearing in dreams floating serenely is a powerful vision of stress free living. We only dream about people we have seen in our lives, although the circumstances may not be similar in our dreams. The content is very ephemeral and quickly evaporates as soon as we wake and begin to move or interact. To capture and study dreams it is necessary to record the memory immediately upon waking. The notes taken upon waking can be used as the subject of meditation or simply reviewed to find trends. With regular practice and the book right next to your bed it is possible to make significant progress into remembering more details as you keep the journal.
Artemisia Vulgaris is an herb used to improve the quality of lucid dreaming. I have used the essential oil for the purpose with good results. A combination of tea and smoking dried mugwort (one of the common names of this herb) before retiring is a traditional blend for inducing lucid dreaming. This herb has been used for centuries to enhance the dream state. The video above mentions a vinegar tonic easily created by soaking the plant in apple cider vinegar. Anyone can make use of these techniques to learn more about unconscious and archetypal players in our personalities.
I idealize and adore Sandra Day O’Connor, so it was not really a surprise to find her as a super hero in my dream last night. She was a super judge, which of course she is, but her super powers had expanded beyond the regular earthy ones. My visual recall of my dreams is still pretty crumby, but the ability to hold on the the basic story and characters is improving. She could swoop in like Mighty Mouse or Batman. She wore fashionable street clothes, not the robe, but did have one of the little collar thingys they wear. She had those same piercing baby blue eyes that had a spectrum of vision that showed her where the rule of law was being abused by the cranky pants people.
The cranky group was diverse and included cops and judges along with regular angry bird citizens (the one’s we think might shoot somebody). The judge archetype seeks to balance justice and compassion. The shadow judge manifests as destructive criticism, judging without compassion, as misuse of legal authority, or threatening others through association with the law. Sandra Day was angelic and gave darshan and peace to the cranky panted ones. She had a clarity about her, as one might expect from cross between a real life Supreme and my dream judge/ justice avenger. She restored order like Jesus healed the sick. She had no props, no wand, no sleigh, just the truth. She was so brilliant that she enlightened the darkness in all the hearts she touched. What she did have in common with Santa was a need to keep moving because there was so much clarity, justice, and compassion to be distributed to all the good little girls and boys. By applying exactly the same fair and equal treatment to all the bad little girls and boys she proved that she was so beyond Supreme.
In real life Sandra Day and I are both Arizona hotties, although she is a Phoenician. She is co chair of an institute to foster civility in Tucson at the U of A. Her reputation for civility is epic, not that unlike my dream Super Supreme Sandra. Her favorite poem in real life tells her secret to Supremehood ( and SuperSupremehood):
Sometime when you’re feeling important;
Sometime when your ego’s in bloom
Sometime when you take it for granted
You’re the best qualified in the room,
Sometime when you feel that your going
Would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow these simple instructions
And see how they humble your soul;
Take a bucket and fill it with water,
Put your hand in it up to the wrist,
Pull it out and the hole that’s remaining
Is a measure of how you will be missed.
You can splash all you wish when you enter,
You may stir up the water galore,
But stop and you’ll find that in no time
It looks quite the same as before.
The moral of this quaint example
Is do just the best that you can,
Be proud of yourself but remember,
There’s no indispensable man.
[Saxon N. White Kessinger, There is No Indispensable Man (1959).]
How simple. These instructions, followed regularly can easily lead to civil discourse. This Supreme’s got SOUL. Let us all wish her luck on her nocturnal flights through the universe. Hi- Ho, SuperSandra, away. Let’s assume that this poem is the gift she wants us all to use while she is busy fighting injustice.
Historical enemies, sagas of war, and the tragic impact violent thoughts have on society today are harsh reminders of human disorder. We can not look back to find a perfect time in history or a completely noble story of our ancestors’ survival. The mixed bag has always existed, known and unknown, true and false. When evil rocks the world we are all quick to isolate culprits and round up perps in our own minds. It does not matter which demon we blame, even if we never mention it out loud. The very act of deciding who is to blame will be a process to eliminate knowledge of one’s own part in building a more hateful world. The question of the moment is “Who started this?”, but we all know intuitively the answer to that eternal question.
The prostitute archetype in each of our dramas will test and be tested to discover ethics and limits. The question will be answered in this lifetime about how blind you are to others in order to enhance your own comfort. This story will star your prostitute archetype. Your storyboard will be repeated in different costumes and sets until the line has been firmly established between your soul and what you are willing to do for physical comfort. You may find it is an opera one time and a comedy the next, but if you look back you can identify the segments like vignettes on the Twilight Zone. You created and produced these stories to find your limits. Your own unconscious mind has written, directed, and been in charge of casting the stars. There are sometimes entire decades of reruns. I feel that our nation has been rerunning an unfortunate version of our best selves with less than admirable results.