15-8-00 0:34:57 -0400 (EDT)
I had several years of night terrors. The attitude of both family and community was that they were *just* dreams. They felt sorry for me, but did not have any resources for me. I think that in doing a lot of work through my dreams, I learned to conquer my deepest fears. I used to have the same dreams over and over, like an adventure game. They would unfold and I would act in them. If what I was doing wasn't working, I would wake up. The next time I would have it I would try something different. If that worked, I'd go a little farther in the scenario of the dream, to another *lesson* as it were. Eventually I would solve all the lessons in a dream and stop having that one. Eventually I came to like my *nightmares* as I had figured out how to win. And they became more like adventures. I also remember being fascinated with flying dreams. As I grew older my flying skills increased. When I started out I was very poor at it.
Hmmmmm......I played seriously with my dreams for as long as I can remember. But, I didn't take them as anything more real than imagination until I was an adult. Eckankar and a number of other mystical systems all seem to be describing dreaming as a gateway to transcendence. Which I have come to feel is true.
Some of all of that. To me the key is bridging the gap between the conscious and unconscious mind. Dreaming practices are very good for this.
Now I believe dreams are as actual as what we think of as normal reality. Different vibrational planes or whatever you want to call it. Language is insufficient to do much real describing of *what* it is. We are left with the same problem the mystics of the ages have had. how to talk about something that has to be experienced to understand. I think they are all talking about the same thing though ... just using different metaphors and trying to lead people to the experience itself. The dreams are an important path for this, IMO.
Dreaming practices are a common thread that run through just about every mystical or religious system I've ever read about or practiced, from huna to christianity. If you pay attention, they are all describing the same thing with the same characteristics. That language itself is so inadequate to impart the difference between what most people think of as reality and what can be experienced, is the greatest barrier of all, I think. Its like trying to describe an acid trip to someone. If they haven't tried it there is nothing you can tell them that will give them any real idea of what you are talking about. If they have done it, there is no need to describe it, they *know*. The best role for descriptions in this area is, I think, just to encourage people to try it and find out for themselves. And to support people when they do, as the message of normal consensual reality as being the only legitimate one, is pervasive in our scientific societies of today.
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