Fear No More

“Millions of spiritual creatures walk the earth Unseen, both when we wake and when we sleep.” ~ John Milton

The things we can’t see are sometimes the scariest…that feeling that something is just around the corner, behind the closet door or under the bed. Ever see a movie where the music builds to a crescendo as a figure who casts a shadow is never shown? But you know it’s out there….

This intense fear can also manifest in dreams – it is the unconscious’ way of processing unresolved fears that reside deep within the psyche from the multiple traumas that accumulate in our lives. My recurring fear dream was sporadic from my teens to late 40s where I usually woke myself up screaming. It was not always the same dream landscape, setting or recognizeable scenario – but always involved a building with endless hallways and rooms.

At the start of the dream, I recognize it is ‘the fear dream’ and I have to go inside the hotel, building, house or apartment where a palatable sense of something evil, terrifying lurks, even with people (dream strangers) around. Drawn farther, knowing “it” is in there terrifies me, but I’m compelled to continue.

In one of these dreams I hear my grandmother’s voice on the other side of a wall, but because of the “evil,” I am paralyzed by fear to enter the room where she is – I try to scream for her to help me, but nothing comes out and I wake up exhausted. In many of the dreams there is a curtain across a doorway and I know something evil is on the other side; I also know I have to draw it aside and confront the evil, but the fear is so great, I abruptly end the dream with a pounding heart and audible scream.

The antidote to terminate these haunting dream sequences is to ask for assitance from a fellow dream worker who agrees to help me confront the fear – whatever it is – that wields its power. The dream I use for processing with her is one where I go up this flight of stairs and I know the “evil” is at the top and that it will kill me. I feel like I have to ascend the stairs, even knowing the consequences.

Using a waking dream re-entry technique, she guides me up the stairs – as I get closer to the top, I describe a harp on the landing and beautiful music wafting down the staircase. The evil grows stronger and the music louder as I near the top – she tells me to touch the harp and turn it into a weapon when I reach the landing. I do, and it suddenly becomes a sword. The music stops and she told me to command the evil to leave. With conviction, I order it to get out, brandishing my sword; I feel empowered and then at peace. When I feel the fear and the evil vanish, I triumphantly walk down the stairs, lay down my sword at the bottom and walk out.

I have never had the dream in any form again.



Appointments with Destiny…

“Destiny itself is like a wonderful wide tapestry in which every thread is guided by an unspeakable tender hand, placed beside another thread and held and carried by a hundred others.”         ~Rainer Maria Wilke

…an old-fashioned clichéd term, but relevant when applied to experiences that draw you to a person or situation that appears to happen by chance. Have you ever thought about the big or small choices that led to events that altered your life dramatically? What if you had made another choice in the matter? Have you ever made just one small decision that completely transformed an outcome and opened opportunities and circumstances that have amazed and surprised you? And in retrospect been thankful for it?

Big questions, simple answers. You made the choices you did because of something larger than yourself. A nudge from an invisible source – a gut-level response to your intuition, a distraction or change of mind. I’m convinced there are “destinies” for each of us to fulfill, whether they bring us pain – or pleasure.

I have scores of examples of kismet, but will initiate this discussion about how I met my husband. Of course it’s piggy-backed on years of  “set ups,” as is every “appointment,” and the fascination lies in looking back to examine what had to occur in order for this or that outcome.

I crammed my college education into two and a half years, as my then husband had a job transfer to another state and I wanted to graduate from the university I attended vs. transferring and finishing elsewhere. He waited in the parking lot as I took my last final exam, then I joined him and we literally hit the road traveling to our new destination – and life. The company he worked for had re-structured its sales territories two times before which created two false moves for us (they re-purchased the houses we bought each time), but this time was solid and we were headed to our THIRD house in a totally different part of the country. I was elated to be moving to a cooler climate where our lifestyle would be different, as the past few years had been stressful and I hoped it would give a failing marriage a new start and energize it.

After a couple of years, my hope for the relationship did not materialize, but I kept busy and enrolled in creative classes indulging my love of art and writing. I also learned to treasure map (visual goal setting in four areas of life) at church, and read everything I could about dreams (a lifelong passion). I noticed a Fall class in jewelry making (another passion!) was offered at the community college, so I signed up and met a woman there who graduated from the same Mid-west university that my husband had and we struck up a dialogue.

Several weeks into the course, I noticed she physically transformed – she lost weight, dressed differently and was animated with an energy that was not present when I first encountered her. I had to ask – what was she doing to make so many positive changes?

More than happy to share, she invited me to a “guest event” in a large city north of us where I could go and see for myself the source of her transformation. The “human potential movement” was emerging at that time and I decided I wanted to learn more.

We went, I was impressed and inspired enough to sign up for a week of “the training,” hoping to steer my life in a new direction. It started on my husband’s birthday, but things were so strained, I didn’t think it would be an issue – but it was. So, I reluctantly canceled and re-scheduled to attend the next one – a month away at the start of a new year.

The holidays came and went and I prepared for what I sensed would be an amazing life-changing experience. I constructed my treasure map that included a harmonious and perfect relationship with a life partner, since the marriage was almost completely unraveled and dovetailed with this mysterious adventure of self-help. A week before the session, I had this dream:

I was between two monks who escorted me to the edge of a precipice that overlooked “the universe.” I saw people ‘sleeping,’ looking like slivers of clouds layered and stretched into infinity. I turned to each of the monks and asked them what they were – and one answered, “future souls.” One monk was blond, the other a redhead. I didn’t know who they were, but I knew I would leave with just one of them. 

The event/training was held in an old downtown hotel in January – I did not know a living soul in the big city, and the commute each evening from my home was a challenge as it took a good hour and a half each way – and the weather was dicey – rain, sleet and snow. On the first night I was astonished to see the amount of people there! At least 250 gathered in this crowded event hall and the energy was palpable. About mid-evening, we formed a circle within a circle and one moved clockwise, the other counterclockwise when the music played – sort of a musical chairs idea. When the music stopped, we were to engage in a diad with the person who stood in front of us.

I enjoyed the exercise, then the music started again and we re-formed the circles; this time when the music stopped, my future husband stood before me! I recognized him from the dream! He was the blond monk and it truly almost took my breath away, but I couldn’t tell him what had just happened! It was literally as if we recognized each other from another place and time. I somehow got through the diad and moved on to do another round of circles, shaken, transported by the surreal experience – I had just kept an appointment with destiny.

After this, I knew I had to move on with my life, so the marriage was dissolved and I relocated northward to that big city trusting that this was the path for my life. Later, when my not-yet-husband and I were getting to know each other, he shared a page from a notebook he carried with him. Before that training, he had outlined what he was looking for in a parnter which described me perfectly and he even drew a sketch that looked like me! I fit every nuance of what he envisioned on paper! Not only that, but he, too, had been scheduled to attend an earlier training, but couldn’t due to work conflicts and signed up for the January session which was not his first choice. And indeed, as they say, the rest is history after 34 years of marriage to my life partner.

Had all these series of decisions, changes in schedules, maneuvering the chess pieces on the board of life from a cosmic hand not happened, the outcome for my life (and all those in it) would have been completely different – but it was greater than I ever imagined it could be and right for all concerned.

Look back and find that moment, that split second decision that took you to a place you might not have gone or met someone you might not have met. How many appointments with destiny have you had?


Prophetic Dream?

“Each man should frame life so that at some future hour fact and his dreaming meet.”   ~Victor Hugo

When considering stories, dreams and experiences to share, I decided not to select them in chronological sequence, but instead in random order because that’s how they unfold in life. In regard to dreams, even after being an active dream worker for nearly 35 years, I am always astounded how tuned-in those nightly dramas are both personally and globally. I often hear the term, “prophetic dream,” and as much as I am a fan of using it myself, it may just be a phenomenon of our primitive psyche/subconscious that is highly attuned and at work in the background like the “sleep mode” on a computer that is turned on, but we’re not aware of it.

The following dream/incidents illustrate the prophetic ‘knowing’ that I believe we all can access — some have worked to develop it, and for others it is a natural extension of their consciousness which is as familiar as breathing.

I corresponded with my former mother-in-law (who I will call Joan) for years following the divorce from her son; we had an unusual bond and the fact that her son and I went on to create new lives did not interfere with our respect and love for each other. Although I had written several times throughout that year, I had not heard from Joan for about six months and wondered if she was ill or still alive, as I would probably not be on a notification list if that was the case. Then I had this dream December 12, 1999:

“I am in Dallas, TX trying to locate Joan who was there with her husband (who pre-deceased her many years earlier) visiting their adult grandchildren, but I can’t find her/them. I am riding in the backseat of a car filled with people and JFK, Jr. is sitting next to me and I feel sensitive to the publicity surrounding his death. I am so close to his face, I can literally see every pore and how he resembles both of his parents. Then it occurs to me his father, JFK, was killed in Dallas. I get out at a street corner in heavy traffic, but make my way to a bank where I ask about Joan – I feel close to finding her and uncomfortable about the dead people in the dream.”

Then on March 9, 2000 I was driving to my writing group via a rural hillside and as I crested the hill, I saw an enormous emu running full speed up the hill straight for me. I swerved and it passed me on the opposite side of the road. It was a startling event that really grabbed my attention! I wondered if something significant was afoot, which is usually the case when these anomalies occur. It was a few days later that I understood the connection to it…and my dream.

On March 25, 2000 there was a note in my mailbox from my former sister-in-law letting me know about Joan’s death on March 9, 2000. Her daughter said she’d moved her mom home with her in December (about the same time I had the dream), as she was getting confused, but had improved and was her normal self looking forward to her 91st birthday on March 10th. However, she died the day before it and was without pain or disease.

The dream and emu were prophetic harbingers that served to prepare me for the news of her passing and let me know she was thinking of me. Joan understood my love for large birds (I had an Amazon parrot all the years she knew me), and that emu would have been the perfect vehicle to signal attention to that date and time.

I believe if we embrace and expand our awareness by making note of significant feelings, events and dreams that punctuate the rhythm of daily life — it will yield an abundance of “knowing” that will multiply and amaze.