Lucid Dreaming: Flying Lessons I

I've written a lot in Future Medicine about spiritual healing and the need for psychological boundaries.

As mentioned previously, this subject receives some in-depth exploration in Creating Right Relationships: A Practical Guide to Ethics in Energy Therapies.

My interest in this subject comes from personal experience, both with people who have misused their boundaries, and with my own opening, which has required (and demanded) attention to boundaries. My outlook in a nutshell is, the more you open spiritually and learn to merge energetic boundaries, the more you need to understand and respect psychological (and professional) boundaries. This is as important for a 'healer'--the only designation we really have right now, even if not a licensed occupational title--as for any health (or other counseling) professional. That understanding informs my academic as well as professional legal work.

While visiting New York, I came across this dream from 7/22/88. The dream helped reinforce the interest in this particular interface between psychology and spirituality.

I share the dream not because my dreams are particularly special (to anyone other than me), but because they carry archetypes that may be generalizeable. Without overinterpreting (I'll let the dream tell itself), this one expresses the 'sorcerer's apprenctice' kind of feel to spiritual opening--alternating between the courage in confronting one's psychic matter and the fear of opening the psyche up too far.

I'm in a forest talking to a friend. We've just been cheated out of a movie contract where we were to play the lead actors. Suddenly, a forest fire starts. I've gone the wrong way, toward the center of the fire, where some people are burnt or maybe frozen solid.

I go back to the top of the forest and follow a college leader in student government out, just before the entrace closes a hole to the outside. Then I go back into the forest to try to help others, but I know I'll die in there so I clamber up the rocks to get as far away as possible.

Alone in the universe, I test myself. I push two thick, tall trees and they fall down, pushing down a row like dominos. They are mighty cedars of Lebanon, I say, suddenly aware that I'm playing the part of the god. A terrifying shape--a hugh, Buddha-like idol with a face like a Japanese mask rolls toward me. I say I can confront the dark side and survive. I let it coome towards me, I'll smash right through it. I feel this as courageous (as opposed to running). I take a stand.

I survive and reorient myself to look at the door, the center of all. I feel powerful. I stop the trees' movement and fly up. A little out of control, but it's as if I'm still trying to master the flying power.

Then I say, "that's enough, I'll wake up." With perfect power, I jolt myself awake, through several levels--terrified yet pleased with my control.

The moment I arrogated powers to myself the idol presented itself. Something to contemplate. Then again, I faced the fears without running. Another perspective on the same vision.

Curiously, last week I sat through a pleasant talk on lucid dreaming at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram on Paradise Island. There was something very familiar about the talk. The speaker described becoming lucid (aware within the dream that he was dreaming) and giving himself such tasks as flying or breathing underwater.

The speaker also referred to "Mahashunya"--the Indian tradition of the Great Void. I knew it was somewhere I had been, and that whether the unconscious life merely expressed the conscious life, or in fact created it, was still an open question.