Like many people, I will sometimes wake up in the night having had a bad dream. I learned early on in my spiritual studies not to go back to sleep straight away. Otherwise, we are simply going straight back into the nightmare with no more protection or understanding than when it caught us unawares the first time. I make myself get up, try to understand the dream, and then put myself in a better mental space. Having done that, the bad dream does not return, at least, not for that night. Bad dreams have a message for us. They are instructive about our fears, anger, and desires. Sometimes, they are a warning.
Once we understand the message of a dream, we still have to reassure ourselves that everything is alright so that we can go back to sleep. For many years, I would listen to an old recording by a relatively unknown person, Joe Handley, who in his later years did a cassette recording in his attic of a book he loved. One particular chapter had affirmations about God’s love. It was simple but reassuring. Something about the way Handley read it was so true, humble, and uplifting that I never failed to find it settling and healing. The recording I had was not a good quality and it got worse with much use over time until it didn’t even work anymore. It did its job.
Until a few years ago, I was not a newspaper reader or a news watcher. I always had a great aversion to horror movies and could never watch any movie at the cinema that had violence which, definitely, limited the choice of movie. To me, news watching was a similar thing. It’s not that I didn’t care about the world. I cared very much, however, my focus was naturally on the interior world rather than the exterior one; the world of thoughts, emotions, and spirit. I found it relatively easy to read the thoughts and intentions of other people. The thought patterns of humans are very similar, for good and bad. Once we understand one person (ourself), it is not difficult to understand other people. The energy people put into those different thought patterns does, of course, vary greatly thus the diversity of people. Continue reading “The Interior and Exterior World”
Along the Way
Somewhere along the way, there develops within the soul a yearning that can no longer be ignored, a craving for the great love affair. We feel it drawing ever closer. It is the greatest of them all. It cannot fail. It is all-consuming. It is incomparable. It is the love affair with our own true nature and the source from which it comes. The desire is in all of us but, more often than not, it is ignored for other interests. We wrestle with each interest, trying to make it work, growing with each adventure until the light has grown bright enough for us to reach for it.
Human love is the shadow of the Great love; its child. And of all human loves, it is romantic love which has the most riveting effect upon our soul. Ageless and perennial, it is forever finding an outlet in poetry, music, dance, story-telling, and the media. We never tire of it. It commands attention at so many turns, such is the longing for its presence in our life. It is not by accident that it has such an unfailing pull on our psyche. If we cannot connect with visible human love, we will not be able to find the invisible Love. Human love is leading us, most of us unknowingly, straight to the divinity of our own nature. And that nature leads us, in turn, to the source of life itself.
We love with all our heart, in every way that we can love but the heart is not burdened. We learn to keep it light and pliable. It has space. It breathes. It waits on Life to give instructions. It sings with sweetness when the winds are soft and warm. It stands with calm patience when the storm is brewing. It lets go when death and seeming endings have left their irrefutable mark. It moves. It heals. It hopes. It allows Life to be lived in the safe, fertile, and still inner space where it grows stronger and more compelling every day.