Four nights of torture and nightmares
Yeesh, I just went through the fourth straight night of nightmares that I can’t get out of. By day I have been performing difficult (for me) compassion and forgiveness meditation exercises, and apparently the nights have become tests: “So, you’re feeling compassion and forgiveness, are you? Well, for the next eight hours how about we beat the crap out of you, then make you witness brutal murders and other unspeakable, violent crimes against people. Where is your compassion now? Do you forgive us?”
I often have various “superpowers” when I’m dreaming that allow me to fight back against “evil” like this. For instance, I can destroy those evil beings with my mind by making them explode or disappear, but for the last four nights I haven’t had those powers, or the ability to wake up to escape the torture.
The only thing I can think is that these are tests, and I need to get to a mental state where I do have my compassion and I can practice forgiveness, and when I can find that place, these nightmares will pass.
The reason I have undertaken this “compassion and forgiveness” training is that (a) this is one thing the Dalai Lama stresses repeatedly, and (b) I have learned that I can’t get past my current understanding/knowledge without passing through these gates of compassion and forgiveness.
I find it hard to describe at the moment, but as I try to think of the “oneness” of the world, I can’t get past my current understanding without passing completely through these gates of knowledge.
It’s like you can’t understand Einstein’s actual math for the Theory of Relativity without first understanding algebra, then geometry, trigonometry, calculus, and so on. You can conceptually understand the Theory of Relativity if someone describes it to you, but unless you pass through these “gates of knowledge” and learn the actual math so you know it and feel it, you’ll never understand his equations.
So that’s where I think I am; I’m being tested, and so far I’m failing the tests.
(Note: During a spontaneous “spiritual” experience a few years ago I was able to pass these tests, but I wasn’t able to hold onto that learning and state of mind, so I find myself here again. I just looked this up, and I wrote about it in a blog post titled, A Lotus for You, A Buddha To Be.)
A little more
The image below, taken from this blog post on another website, shows what I’m thinking of at this moment, a story about the Dalai Lama talking to a Tibetan monk who had been tortured for many, many years: