After I finished In the Company of Friends, I had some trouble settling on my next book. A couple of days later I drew a tarot card–The Star–for inspiration. My impulse was to choose something fun and intuitively appealing, so I looked for The Kabbalah of Light which has been languishing on my maybe pile for a while. I noticed there was a star on the spine of the book, so that seemed like a pretty clear confirmation.
It was a fun read, as expected! It was more of a surprise that it was also almost entirely about dreaming. What I’m taking away from this one is the method, which I started using almost immediately (along with a little stone bear I’ve had for a while, which seemed like it would make a good dream talisman after last week’s project).
Here’s how it works:
1. Write down a dream every morning. If you can’t remember, write down how you feel when you wake up, and if you keep this up you should start to remember your dreams pretty quickly. Write in as much detail as you can, including your feelings.
2. Notice the themes and patterns of the dream, for example: numbers, relationships, feelings, things that remind you of other things, and any particularly striking details. For the most part, elements that remind you of your daily activities will not be central to the power of the dream.
3. Look for an unresolved situation in the dream, for example, a problem to be solved or something you would have liked to explore further (by opening a door, for example). Spend a few breaths relaxing with your eyes closed, then imagine resolving that situation.
That’s basically it! There are a lot more specific exercises in the book, but this is the central one, and working with it for less than a week has already been pretty impactful for me.
In one memorable dream, I went into a shop selling carpets for zendos, vaguely considering that I might buy one in the future. The merchant showed me that there were tiny holes in some of the previously used carpets and told me that this was good, because it represented the way that a lineage could be passed on by people with human flaws and still contain a vibrant pattern. I was most attracted to the carpet on the floor of the display room, which had a magically shifting mandala pattern that reminded me of the earth with purplish mountains around a glowing golden core, or possibly some kind of flower. As I resolved the dream I went back to choose this one, and I’ve since imagined myself in a room containing this carpet often.
There has also been a pretty intense uptick in synchronicity that I attribute to work with this dream and others. First, this book describes the subconscious as the glittering serpent Leviathan, which reminded me of the imaginal silver snake I’ve been tracking.
Second, it occurred to me that the flower was a bit like the passionflower, which I’ve been wanting to try as an herbal tea. When I looked up its qualities, I learned that it could be helpful for some health issues I deal with, as well as for shedding energetic patterns from the past and for dream work. Third, there’s actually a bit in the book describing stars as a symbol of intuition (you almost an’t make this stuff up).
Just this morning, I looked up this card from the Anima Mundi Tarot in order to include an image here, and noticed the ibis for the first time. A few weeks ago there were a couple of other things on my mind: Seshet, an Egyptian goddess of writing, libraries, measurement and pattern, and the recurring image of a red thread connecting the many different interests I’ve been trying to weave together. When I went to look for an image of Seshet, I found this one (by Rhonda Libbey), which I had to buy immediately for obvious reasons. Anyway, the star is a frequent symbol of Seshet, and as a consort/feminine form of Thoth she’s also pretty closely linked to the ibis, as shown here, so it was nice to see her again.
Bottom line, I guess, is that I’m feeling pretty good about how this imaginal work is going, and looking forward to keeping it up while adding some passionflower tea.