Are there dangers in spreading your wings?
There are dangers in virtually everything we do in our everyday life. People die from normal activities such as driving a car, eating out and the electricity in their home. We take it for granted that knowing and avoiding such dangers is a regular part of life. So it is good to look at the possible dangers of crossing the frontier into wider awareness and transformation.
Years ago a young man talked to me about developing his intuition. He was going to use a crystal ball to do this. I discovered he was convinced pictures and scenes actually appeared in the ball, rather than it being a focus for his mental imagery. That lack of understanding could put him in a dangerous relationship with his own imagination and imagery. He would not arrive at a balanced evaluation of what he was experiencing.
The danger of this lack of understanding applies to lucidity also. You are dealing with powerful mental, emotional and spiritual processes. It is important to understand what the dream process is capable of and what it does. Remember, a dream is a full surround virtual reality activating all your senses and abilities. When you are in it, it is just as real to you as the physical world. But there is a huge difference. The environment, people, animals and objects are all projections. In the film Matrix, the hero is at one point put into a lucid virtual reality called ‘the construct’. He cannot understand what is happening to him, and his guide says, “What you see now is what we call residual self image. It is a mental projection….” Your dream is exactly that, an amazing moving and living projection in which you act and interact with YOURSELF. There is, in the widest or cosmic sense, nothing else. The dream process transforms your emotions, your beliefs and hopes, your fears and traumas, your intuitions and creative visions, into people, environments, animals and events. Understanding that is vital.
The second danger is avoidance. Because everything you meet is an aspect of yourself – either your small or cosmic self – any avoidance of a frightening dream figure, a difficult environment is an avoidance of yourself. The figures and environments are created out of your own mental, emotional and sexual energy. Avoiding them means losing portions of your potential and your physical and emotional energy. I know this as a vital personal truth. At one time I suffered what is now called ME. I was so tired I barely wanted to stand up. As I reclaimed my dream figures the tiredness disappeared.
Your dream characters and animals are intelligent and purposeful. They have a semi independent life within you until you integrate them. You create them unconsciously using your energy, positive feelings and motivations. Avoiding them leads to the loss of your full potential and health. I am not suggesting you immediately meet and integrate all your many aspects. That takes time, courage and a form of strength that only grows as you mature in this new environment. What is important is to remember your goals – integration and wholeness – growth into a new level of ability and maturity, a new connection with others and yourself. You do this by claiming and loving all that you are.
The third danger is the lack of understanding about your own growing abilities. In crossing the frontier into your fuller life, you have opened a gate wider than you have in the past. Usually only a few dreams and feelings have been allowed through into waking life, and for some people not even dreams have emerged. So it is important to remember that the world of lucidity can sometimes emerge into waking life if it is important enough. Sometimes there is an urge from within that needs to be known. This breaks through in the form of a waking dream. That sounds easy, but remember that a dream creates a full surround virtual reality. When the breakthrough occurs you see people, perhaps hear a voice talking to you, or see an animal that is not physically present. If you do not understand the process you may develop crazy anxious ideas and feelings about it. So take this in and make it something you understand. A vision, a hallucination, is the dream process occurring while you are awake. It is not a sign of madness, but an indication that you are now able to access your intuition and unconscious senses more capably.
The fourth danger is in not knowing your territory. This is not a big danger, but it can be disturbing if you are suddenly in an environment you have no understanding or concept of. So recognise that there are five major levels of consciousness, each producing very different ways of experiencing yourself.
- The first is waking consciousness. The attributes of this are focussed awareness through the physical senses. Limited perception of and ability to change your surroundings. Ability to reason deductively and inductively. Critical observation.
- Dreaming. This, without lucidity, loses the ability to reason and critically evaluate situations. In it you are immersed in a world of your own creation that is infinitely variable and easily open to change. You unconsciously create an apparent reality expressed as dream images and drama.
- An environment beyond the images of dreams in which you directly observe the forces of mind and body that create the dream imagery. Usually to enter this you need to be lucid, otherwise it expresses as dream imagery. Here you can directly work with the bodymind processes.
Dreamless sleep – usually experienced as unconsciousness. If entered lucidly it becomes an infinite ocean of awareness in which you are an integral part of the cosmos and all that exists in it. Here there is the possibility of gaining insight into how your present personality was formed out of this ocean of possibilities and collective experience.
- Totality. In some cultures called enlightenment or liberation. In this phase you are both the ocean of consciousness and also the individual waking awareness at the same moment.