Riding Around in Reverse
(journal 28 March to 01 April)
On the basis of changing my dream pattern: this move into another culture, another country has been very important.
My dream pattern has changed so dramatically. The old Indians made to me the teaching about how important the dream life can be.
Much of the ceremonial exercises and rituals of my work in the World Journey is about the dream pattern.
It seems that if you can change and altar the dream pattern, then the life itself can change. It seems that this is possible.
You can change yourself within. You do not have to stop being you. Changing the dream pattern very softly changes the kind of thoughts you have during the normal days; in your conversations with others. Even small changes in these areas can change many things...the work, the social experience, even the fundamental energy of life itself. It is a small thing with enormously large consequences.
Small changes lead to new meetings....new meetings lead to new opportunities.
Last night I had a long, long dream. At the end of this dream I was on an island a lot like Pantelleria. In the dream life "these places" are the "same places" but they look and feel like different places.
In this different Pantelleria my dreaming showed me a dark side to the island. In the darkness a very frightening monster came towards me and I was very frightened for a moment. Taking a very long breath I sat right down on the earth in front of the monster and began singing directly to it. It was a song I have never made before. It was a little broken, but it was also very focused and all my being was focused only on this song. The next thing I knew Silvia was waking me up. She said I was singing a beautiful song at the top of my voice. Other people in the house had to get up and go to the work the next morning, so she woke me. In waking me I was able to remember clearly the dream.
One aspect of changing the dream pattern is to have the experience to awaken in a strong dream and make some record, or fix otherwise into your memory the dream experience.
All to often we awaken after the long sleep to remember we were dreaming, but to remember nothing about the dream itself.
Since I have experienced Pantelleria, I have found it to be just about the strongest place I have ever been for dreaming.
It is a tiny island surrounded by a large sea, covered in obsidian and doused with volcanic vapors and many intense flowers. The chemistry of the land and air is potent and unique.
Many of my strongest dreams for the last several years have been about Pantelleria. Many of my strongest dreams about Pantelleria take place when I go away from the island. As I write this I am in Bolgna for some medical tests and each night the dreams about the island have been strong and interesting.
In these dreams now I have had many Indians present, and also the sacred pipe has been in many of these dreams.
The next night: more dreams with old indians. I had a long conversation in the dreaming with the late Slow Turtle, Supreme Medicine Man (Sacheem) of the Wompanoag Indians of Cape Cod. He had built a huge circular deck over the waterfalls of an old creek I used to play in as a child. On the platform many new age people were holding meditations or ceremonies of some sort. This was agitating to me but I was at peace about it after having the long talk with my old friend. Many of my old sculptures were in the stones of the creek, like old offerings and I was moved to tears that even though now there was all this activity, the offerings had not been disturbed or stolen. Our main topic of conversation that I remember was in trying to fix his satellite tv cable connection. We walked down a long, beautiful dirt road and finally ended up at the place where all the technology cables could be seen.
Later I visited my old art gallery which I had sold to some woman. She had two indian boys working for her and one was wearing a strange necklace that fitted around his shoulders. It was made of very poor quality turquoise, but the design was rather interesting and quite unique. I did not like so much the way they had my art displayed but thanked them for their help in selling my art. I remember embracing old slow turtle and telling him that I loved him.
I spoke with other people, people who were clearly not indian people. I was supportive of their efforts to understand our culture and teachings but at the same time I was very sarcastic with them about their pretense of knowledge. It was like thank you so much for making this effort to understand but please shut up and keep your opinions about these things to yourself.
"In the winds of the pines the last songs and prayers of my people will not be seen or heard and their tears will fall like rain in the mist". An old indian. Moving alone now through the spaces of the waiting world, forever a long way from home. Finding dreams and teachers inside the dreams he has become like singing water, flowing across the rivers of time, unbound and and solitary.
The next night...another long ceremony with an asian teacher and many dogs, including one who speaks english. A ceremonial altar with power objects from around the world. Later in the day, a nap with a dream about moving next door to a gigantic spanish american family. The house is a typical migrant worker type of mobile housing, two long rows of them set on either side of a large corn field with plowed rows of dark earth for the front yards.....So interesting. In my dreams I make this world journey with these sacred objects and this ceremonial space.
When awake I am here in Bolgna Italy undergoing long medical tests and making walks in the rain under cloudy skies. In the garden there is one very happy little bird that sings all day, rain or shine. The number 1640 comes up several times. I eat a little chocolate, hand made from a local place which sets my body on fire and reminds me my days of eating chocolate have finished. It sure was tasty.
I have learned from this dreaming that creating and entering a ceremonial space is to change entirely the moment and to alter in a strong and clear way the expressions and habits of everyday behavior. This lesson is so simple. It is the real value of the ceremonies carried inside the sacred pipe.
I learn that people often have trouble with this opportunity to shift their minds and often persist in behaving in a typically normal way. Like resistance to abundance, we also have resistance to our own powers to change reality, if only for a moment. We pray for change yet hang on like monkeys on a vine to our daily habits of behavior. The ceremonial space is quiet and forces nothing. It is a voluntary act of consciousness, which is what gives it its true power...the silent and gentle shift in behavior is about the only rule.
Later that night we went to an Italian BBQ restaurant and had a mountain of BBQ meat. The Italians BBQ dry meat with no sauce at all. I was raised on southern and Texas BBQ which is more or less drowned in sauce. The wine was outstanding, homemade bread, very intense place. It was only a few kilometers from home so to amuse me Silvia drove home in reverse. Later I was thinking about the meat. I really prefer BBQ with lots and lots of sauce.