Giving up on my dreams

February 26, 2015

For a while I’ve known that for me to make the next step in my progress, I need to give up on my nocturnal dreams, but as you can see by browsing this blog, I remember a lot of dreams, I’m actively involved in most of them, and I enjoy almost all of them, especially the PK and flying dreams. In Zen parlance I’m “attached” to my dreams -- I don’t want to give them up -- but to make further progress I know that need to “detach” myself from them.

I started on this last night, but didn’t do very well. The only good thing I can report is that I tried. As some dreams came up I kept repeating things like, “I love you,” “I forgive you,” tried meditating while sleeping, and so on, but they kept coming back. I suspect that this is going to take some time, mostly because of my attachment. Intellectually, I know that the choice is to either (a) make progress down the road of becoming a Zen Master, or (b) continuing to enjoy my evening dreams. I’ll guess that most people interested in this path would take Door #1 in a heartbeat, but this is a hard choice for me. I don’t think I’m afraid of progressing, I just happen to really like my dreams, they’re one of my favorite parts of life.

A long time ago in a place far away ...

Writing those first paragraphs got me to thinking that way back in the 1990s I had a little bit of an enlightenment experience. I suspect it was “the” enlightenment experience, but I can’t really judge that, I’m not a Zen Master.

What happened was that I was trying to lay on the floor and meditate, and suffice it to say, it went very well. “I” disappeared into that void of spacetime for some amount of time, and then eventually, slowly, my consciousness/awareness began to return to my body. As I began to return I became very aware of where I had been, but that part’s a little hard to describe. What I’m thinking as I write this is that I slowly became aware of who I was again, and that I had a physical body, and I also knew that body was probably still laying on the floor. But what blew my mind (so to speak) was that the silence in my brain/mind was stunning. There were absolutely no thoughts in my mind, and that feeling was amazing.

I think a lot of people think, “Oh, I’m not thinking, my mind is very calm,” but until you’ve had this experience you don’t have any idea how much noise is really in the mind you think is currently quiet. When you get to this place, the quiet is like the bottom-of-the-ocean, dark-side-of-the-moon quiet. There is nothing going on in your mind, and it’s an incredibly pleasant feeling. As I rested in this place I thought I should mentally call out “Echo” just to see what would happen. The feeling was intense, beautiful, and seductive. If I had a choice at that moment I would have stayed there for a very, very long time.

Sadly, for a variety of reasons -- mostly attachments -- I’ve regressed since that experience, but as I mentioned in the beginning of this story, I know what my next step needs to be, and I can use this experience as motivation. As I write this I realize that maybe, just maybe, I can trade my dreams to get back to this place, and knowing what I know, that might be a worthy trade.

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