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On Dream Writing

Updated: Jan 10


There are certain dreams that pass through us in the night which, when we wake up, call us to pay them some special attention and dig a little deeper in the message that they hold. They are like magic eggs that require a little brooding before they crack open and whatever inside them comes to hatch.


When you wake up and the dream is there, like a super-charged crystal throbbing inside us, and reflecting upon it, overwhelmed with curiosity for the startling paradoxes and vague teachings that it has shown, before running about on your day, grab a paper and pen, make a coffee, light a cigarette or whatever settles your mood for writing, then close your eyes, and begin to wonder.


A dream is like a piece of ore extracted from the darkness inside a mountain. It comes out crude and raw, lined and mottled by the minerals of the mountain. Your mind is the mountain, those lines and mottles are what give the ore its appearance. But, just as a dream can take many forms depending on the dreamer, the element, that pure and fundamental substance that lies within the ore, is the same in all times, bodies and spaces.


To refine the element from the ore of the dream, I have a certain process that works for me, which I will now share with you now in brief. I call this process dream alchemy, because it is a mystical science of refining the substance of dreams. I have had no instruction or training in this, but I have been working on this dream alchemy for years enough to say that it works for me, and that by following certain processes I can distil the elemental message of dreams, the substance that comes from the unknown within the mountain of who we are. It is the beginning of this process that I will share with you here.


When my eyes open from the wondering, I begin writing out the dream. I write fast and loose, following the thread of the tale of the dream. My handwriting is strange, rougher than usual, and there are mistakes everywhere. This I will revisit and clarify once the dream recollection has come to an end.


As I write, some things, events, objects, seem peculiarly more vivid and curious than others. Noumena, they have been called by Jung and other alchemists, expressions of a deeper reality beyond the filtering complexes of the senses. Appearing to me in such a way, I treat them as special, I spend more time on describing them, the feeling that surrounds them, and the revealing of their meaning. By meaning here I am not talking about a process of thought; it is not reachable by logic or deduction. I mean a mystical meaning, or the beginning of it, that comes from a feeling of rightness and direction while not knowing what it is or where it is leading.


Following that feeling, I make my way through the tale, and another aspect that I pay special attention to are my emotions in the dream, whatever makes me sad, happy, shocked, scared, shameful, angry, tender, excited. These are the lines and mottles of the raw material, the minerals of myself in this life that give colour and appearance to what is shown. They are important for different reasons. One, because you can gain insight about the things that sway you in life, whether in like or dislike, the magnetics of your particular emotional composition. This personal wisdom is very helpful to somebody who wishes to know themself beyond the superficial, as you can imagine. Two, because you can begin to separate these veins and marks from the element itself, to distinguish the temporal message from the atemporal, or the subjective from the objective. Both of these refinements are important to ascertain because the personal and universal are two sides of the same coin; without balance, there will be a disequilibrium in the understanding. This occurs to an extreme extent when we have recurring and/or unremembered nightmares, heavy with unrefined personal emotions that are affecting, unconsciously, our being in the waking world. In this latter case, the dream is so uncrusted with personal minerals and accumulations that it is impossible to recognise the precious element that it conceals.


So I am writing and paying special attention to curious entities and events along with any emotions that arise on the journey. Another thing that I will treat with care is any paradox that I come across. For example, waiting for something, something different arrives, then that turning out to be something different altogether, as in the dream Riding in the Lord’s Vehicle. Paradoxes are very magical, because they belong to no state of mind. They are expressions from that unknown depth within us before it becomes manifest and known as the divided abundance of our experience as the world. Ordinarily, so engrossed in the captivating illusion of our limited world, we neglect our relationship with all that lies beyond it. Although a paradox may not reveal instantly whatever it wishes to relate, it will certainly remain with you as a question for a long time to come, like a gateway into the secret shrine of your heart, and it will not close nor open easily for there is no force or opposition to act upon it. If you come across a paradox, write it down simply and without embellishment, so that it is easy to remember and to contemplate later.

The last thing that I will share here is the arch. The arch is a movement, or a rhythm that can occur within a dream, much like the rhythm of a story as it moves from one happening to another. Your writing should be appealing to you, you should want to read it again - here I am talking about a kind of artistry or mastery over the dream, of a certain skill of Dreamcraft. If there appears an arch in the dream, try to follow it in the writing - the shifts, the pauses, the rises and falls, the quiet and the loud. Beyond making this appealing to yourself, it will also make the writing appealing to others, which means, given that it has been shared with you, that it can be shared. The sharing that it becomes may not be the dream itself, but a song, a story, maybe even a sculpture or a painting, but sharing of one form or another, I feel is very important to the path of the dream. Why else would it come through us and out into the world?


Now I have my dream written out. Once I have made the corrections necessary to render it readable, it should, in most cases, unless the dream is extremely powerful, be short, no more than a page. This is so that the dream does not over dominate other aspects of life and cause mental discord, which can very easily happen if you have ever carried a heavy and unrefined dream about with you all of your waking day.


Once you have written it down, the first movement of dream alchemy is complete. It is out of you, and into the world. Where it goes now, depends on the dream and upon quantity and quality of the substance, the element that has been refined in this part of the process. I will say nothing of what the element is or what to look for, as this will set off a search for something that was never missing. The refined element will mature in its own time, like the ripening of a fruit. Only, reaching closer to the mark with the paradox, I will say this: that it will feel as though you are receiving a message that you always knew of, from yourself who you do not know of.


If anything that I have written about here was of use to you or you have anything related that you would like to share, please write a comment below. Likewise, if you would like to hear more about dream alchemy, tell me about it, so that I can unravel more of this theme to those who wish to read about it.


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