Dream #8: 23.07.14 ~ “Baby White Elephant & Curious Cows”

white elephant

“Baby White Elephant & Curious Cows”

28 June 2014 ~ Tara Gardens, GA

I dream that it’s a sunny morning at my family’s home in Massachusetts and I’m out walking a piglet named Tommy and my dog, Ozzie, as if I’m taking care of them while I visit. Both are adorable, especially the little pig. We walk to a small, dew-drenched field nestled over a valley and the air is misty. I let the animals run around and I have an encounter with a feisty hummingbird that I feel I’ve squared off against in an earlier dream. Suddenly we see a baby white elephant at the edge of the field and I’m concerned that hunters down below will see it, though thankfully no shots are fired. As the day heats up, the hummingbird buzzes off, I leash up Oz and the piglet and we head for home. We approach a small stairwell and I turn to look back at the elephant, though to my surprise it’s gone and the view is of a completely different part of the wilderness. Down below a steep hill is a pen full of enormous, healthy cows. Their ‘leader’ makes a swirling motion with its head and all the others—30 of them at least!—make the same motion simultaneously, then start to walk toward us. Oz and the piglet are scared and hide behind me, but a woman’s voice speaks up and says that we’re “the highlight of their day.”

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Dream #7: 22.07.14 ~ “A Glimpse at My Destiny”

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“A Glimpse at My Destiny”

22 July 2014 ~ Becket, MA

Prior to sleep I attempt to incubate a dream that would reveal a glimpse of my destiny. Moments later I fall asleep and dream that I’m in a large lecture hall—the room is dimly lit with rich, dark furnishings, like something one might imagine at Oxford or Cambridge. I’ve just given a presentation and now it’s T.’s turn. He’s wearing an outfit reminiscent of a Roman soldier, and as he takes the stage I ask the man next to me whether my own presentation had succeeded in both educating the audience and clearing energy. He said it was good but more time was needed to satisfy the latter goal.

T. begins to speak about Shakespeare and I overhear the professor saying that he’s not impressed by T.’s costumed stunt. Music starts playing and T., who is on a pedestal in the right corner of the room, begins turning the pages of a large book that he’s written and crafted to look like an ancient text complete with illustrations. Excitement is mounting in the hall and everyone is anticipating his reading in a British accent. He finally settles on a specific page and starts, though he speaks with an American accent (which is rather anticlimactic for me). He begins to read about Apple computers’ innovations before walking over to a wall and breaking it down with a large sledgehammer. He reveals a secret place where an art installation will hang in the future, as the wall is already marked off to fit a frame. Somehow he knew precisely where the work would go, as there is some writing on the wall. There are two spots demarcated—one spot says “What was here” and the other says “What is to come.” Neither artwork is there and it looks as if there’s been a renovation that’s covered it up. We all sense that the new owner in charge of the renovation process understood that he’d done something untruthful or unethical in covering up this place. Upon realizing this, the audience—especially a handful of guys—begins to playfully chant “Death to Matt!” several times, though I’m not sure who this is. Then T. says directly to me, “Sign a Lease with Me, Sign a Lease with Me, Sign a Lease with Me!” As I wake up I hear something about “generosity,” that our potential venture together will benefit from being a bit flashy (which is T.’s specialty) and that the time for this project is “not yet.”

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Dream #6: 21.07.14 ~ “Chanting ‘AH’”

Bee-apis

“Chanting ‘AH’”

12 July 2014 ~ Becket, MA

I’m walking in a campground similar (or perhaps identical) to one from a previous dream, when suddenly I’m accosted by bees! I’m also talking on the phone with an unknown person who is discussing bees. I sit down to try and avoid the swarm, and once it passes I continue walking before arriving at a circle of singers that are “toning” the sound “AH.” I join in and harmonize with them, then I sing a fifth note higher, and another and another until I hit a fairly high note. I hold the note as long as I can, even forgoing breathing! My heart begins to quiver as I sing, and an unknown voice encourages me to “Keep going!” The vibration rumbles throughout my entire being and I feel liberated as I awaken. In the process of recording the dream, I take note that prior to falling asleep I’d briefly visualized the Tibetan symbol for “AH,” which revved my mind up like a motor though, after adjusting the intensity a bit, created a lovely meditative state accompanied by a voice saying, “that’s perfect!””

ah

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Dream #5: 19.07.14 ~ “Lucid Dancing”

dancer-flying

“Lucid Dancing”

19 July 2014 ~ Becket, MA

I’m in a penthouse dance studio with wooden floors and large windows looking out over New York City. I’m dancing with some friends and a woman tells me that it would be good to have a dance with J. & K., my friends from California. A song starts in 7-time and I join them. J. swings me around and off my feet as if we’d rehearsed a routine, and then K. connects. After a few moments of interweaving our bodies, K. and I are swept up by J.’s momentum, or perhaps all of us are swept up in the momentum and we’re whirling across the room, barely touching the floor. Our energy carries us out the window and we take flight out over the city. “Sweet!,” I exclaim, realizing that I’m lucid. “Guys, we’re flying!” They don’t answer but I feel their presence and surrender to the ride, floating blissfully for a few moments. The experience ends all too soon. I feel my body relax a bit as I awaken and think that I probably wasn’t relaxed enough during the dream itself, or else it may have lasted longer.

Dream #4: 18.07.14 ~ “The Phoenix & the Spectral Rain”

fire pheonix

“The Phoenix & the Spectral Rain”

18 July 2014 ~ Becket, MA

I’m in Florida with J. It has been a long day and now at night, we’re in the woods. I look up and see the thin outline of a fiery bird or dragon flying across the sky above the canopy. “Look!” I exclaim, motioning for J. to see this with her own eyes. Together we look up and now there are two of them diving in and out of the treetops. They’re slightly different, but both are bright red with flames coming off of them, swerving and spiraling through the indigo sky. J. says that they’re a pair of magical creatures that she knows of and that it’s a blessing to see them. Suddenly, chards of multicolored, “spectral” light begin to rain down upon us, an incredible sight that fills me with joy. I awaken mystified, and only later consider that these “birds” may have been phoenixes.

girl in rain

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Dream #3: 17.07.14 ~ “Ex-Lover Pushes My Buttons”

compassion

17 July 2014 ~ Becket, MA

I’m at a party when an ex-lover contacts me via a cryptic message suggesting that she is going to the doctor the next day and that he has “big news.” I ask whether she might be pregnant and she says it seems likely. I get frustrated as I’m now at her house with her new boyfriend and she says that she’s given up making music on account of an injury, though somehow I feel that her new partner is behind it and think the whole thing is absurd. It feels like her finger is pressing on my heart and I’m on the verge of getting really upset when I suddenly realize that there’s no reason to be—her pushing my buttons is an opportunity to chill out, cool down, and turn the whole thing into love and compassion. I speak this aloud and change my attitude completely, thanking her for reminding me.

Dream #2: 16.07.14 ~ “Becoming a Dolphin”

Dolphins

13 July 2014 – Becket, MA

Absolutely incredible! I meet a woman on a small boat in a placid lake surrounded by reddish rocks. She gives me a device, like a microchip and headset—it is like a lucid dream “tester.” She demonstrates how to use the device and says that with it I can be or do anything. Suddenly she dematerializes, then reappears, and it is no longer clear whether she’s a man or a woman—she seems to be both. He/she says something about being a guru and having lived life as a guru many times, then hands me the device. I try it out a couple of times as the “teacher” gives me some ground rules, including rule #3, which is a warning of some kind. I don’t quite catch what she’s saying as I spontaneously turn into a dolphin, diving deep into the turquoise water and feeling ecstatic. At first I swim very quickly and then slow down, surfacing and smiling at my host. She smiles back in approval, then I swim as fast a I can until the whole scene becomes scrambled and full of static, as if the microchip has shorted out. I hand the device back to my guide and he/she says not to worry, placing the chip in a charger and giving me the impression that they can be ordered inexpensively. I ask if this was “virtual reality” and he/she says “no.” Then she warns me about people/beings that try to choke or harm you in a dream, that these instances are “real” threats. I tell her that I’ve had these sorts of dreams and have heard of others having them. The scene gradually fades away and I wake up mystified, thinking about a friend and how much he would love this gadget.

Dream #1: 15.07.14 ~ “Contact Dance with the Mother”

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10 July 2014 – Adirondack National Park, NY

Early in the morning, a remarkable dancing dream—rare!—I’m in a yoga class with my sister and several other female students. It seems like it’s my third-or-so class with this teacher, a rather large and earth-motherly latino woman. I’m stationed toward the back of the hall and am in a side bend when she comes over to me for the first time and begins to correct my posture, moving my arms, left one first, and ultimately moving me into an adjusted forward bend. Soon she sweeps me up and we begin to dance, much like contact improv. She basically carries me all over the hall, which is bright with screened-in walls. She dances me, I feel connected to her, my eyes are closed so I see nothing visually for a while, just whirl through space as enchanting music plays. Finally, she rolls me toward her and presses my body against her breasts, heart, womb, and after a few moments I’m inverted in a handstand against the wall. When the music finishes we gather in a circle in the center of the hall, the mother/teacher is now a young black woman, she seems emotionally ‘moved’ and says few words before leaving. Some of the other women in the class thank me, I feel vulnerable, exposed and beautiful. People have already gathered for the next class, I try to grab my belongings but the room is darker now with many young people sitting in chairs. Upon awakening, I feel as if my soul has been freed and being pressed against the mother’s breasts is reminiscent of Amma’s embrace.

Amma

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The Dream Telepathy Contest

This past weekend I attended the International Association for the Study of Dreams (IASD) conference—the world’s only trans-disciplinary conference on the mysterious subject of dreaming. The organization gathers once a year and is composed of psychologists, physicists, spiritualists, researchers-at-large and a host of experts from any number of fields. Most attendees have both professional and personal interests at stake and needless to say, the atmosphere is somewhat, well, dreamy. Within the conference itself there are a number of “camps”—to name a few, there are the psychotherapists, the Jungians, the psi dreamers and my favorite, the lucid dreamers. Naturally, there’s plenty of overlap within and between these groups, but I found that I ran into the same core group of folks again and again based on our similar interests (and perhaps our resonant energy fields or some other form of karmic connection).

Psi is the symbol used to denote “parapsychological” phenomena, such as telepathy, precognition (i.e., seeing the future), communication with the deceased, miraculous healing and/or other extraordinary experiences that tend to occur in dreams. It should be duly noted that dream telepathy has actually been proven statistically significant in a lab, yet it remains invalidated by mainstream science and denied by popular culture. As this is a sore spot within a community of dreamers, among the highlights of the conference is the Psi dreaming contest, which challenges attendees to dream of a pre-selected target image on a specific night. For example, on Thursday night a woman acknowledged as having strong psychic abilities acted as the “sender,” visualizing the target and broadcasting it in her mind to the various contest participants. Upon going to bed, several hundred participants attempted to “incubate” a dream revealing the details of the image, or even to dream of asking the sender to describe it. In the morning, the participants were shown four images and asked to identify the one that they believed was the target, in addition to describing the specifics of their own dream from the previous night.

At the end of the conference, the winners were announced during a big costume party (I went as a rice farmer :) ). While there were several honorable mentions for dreamers who identified bits and pieces, structural elements and/or the emotional content of the target, the winner received a “five-star hit”—her description was exceptionally vivid and accurate on a number of the contest’s ratings protocols. As she accepted her award, however, the emcee announced that another woman had actually scored a “nine-star hit.” The crowd “ooohed” and “aaahed” as he read this visionary dreamer’s remarkable description, a near perfect match of the target down to the very last detail. “Unfortunately,” said the emcee, “this entry is disqualified as it was received two days before the contest began!”

Endless Orgasms: How to Be a Tantric Rock Star

A lot of people – especially men – come up to me asking about tantric sex. Usually they say something like, “How do you do that?” or “You mean you really don’t have orgasms?” My answer to them is that learning tantra is like getting to Carnegie Hall (just hop in a cab!), and that the goal is not to stop having orgasms but to let them build into endless, earth-shattering ones. Got your attention?

A friend of mine recently said to me, “There isn’t a woman alive that wouldn’t want a tantric lover.” Maybe she’s right, I don’t know – I don’t claim to be an expert and am certainly not a “rock star” (but it has a nice ring to it). What I do know is that there’s a whole lot more to it than having endless, spiritual sex. Tantra is a full-time gig!

Western culture is filled with misinformation about tantra. I recently guest lectured to an undergraduate class on “Spirituality & Sexuality” and just mentioning the word “tantra” invoked all sorts of myths among the students. Most of them knew about the sex part, yet none of them had any knowledge of how to “do” it. They may have flipped through the Kama Sutra once or twice and checked out any number of questionable websites, but in general they were unaware of the larger discipline within yogic lineage.

The principles of tantra date back to around the 5th century A.D. Ritualistic sex was not a major selling point back in those days. Early Tantrics were interested in “liberation” – literally conquering death – through a radical acceptance of the body and its passions rather than a renunciation of pleasure that was (and still is) typical of monastics. Over time sex became acknowledged as a powerful vehicle for transcendence, but it was only one piece of the puzzle. Some Tantrics would also eat burning corpses (yum!), though that part isn’t nearly as sexy.

Among the many myths surrounding modern tantra is that men should try to stop their orgasms. On the contrary, tantric men should train themselves to inhibit ejaculation. “Aren’t they one and the same?” you ask. No. With practice, a man can re-wire his bodymind to have orgasmic experiences without exhausting his sexual energy, which is the inevitable consequence of ejaculation. One way to do this is to work on maintaining 75% of your pleasure threshold during sex. Gradually that threshold will rise higher and higher until one day (usually anywhere from two to six months) all that energy will boil over and flood your (and your partner’s) whole being with ecstasy.

That’s the easy part, though for most men it’s probably one of the most challenging things you’ll ever do (and if you drop the ball you’ve got to start over). Meanwhile, throughout this whole process and, assuming you’re in for the long haul, for the rest of your natural life you’re going to need to work on something called sublimation, which involves raising the excess energy out of your loins and into your higher chakras where it is transmuted into a more refined spiritual “magic.”

Without sublimation practices, all of that sexual mojo will fester below your belt – instead of endless orgasms, imagine endless blue balls! As for how to sublimate, it falls beyond the scope of this article. Find a knowledgeable (and ethical!) tantra instructor to teach you special postures and breathing exercises and expect to practice them daily. Also, keep in mind that storing up all of that seed may make you mildly crazy. One friend suggested not starting with tantric sex until you’re over thirty and your hormones have chilled out a little.

In my experience – and this goes for both men and women – the real art of tantric sex lies in being able to GIVE YOURSELF COMPLETELY to your partner. If you were to take away one thing from this piece, let it be the notion that sex is better when you’re not pleasing yourself. Next time you’re between the sheets, notice if and when you’re trying to get yourself off. This is where sex becomes a mindful act – continually bringing your attention squarely back to your partner and feeling into their heart for how you can best serve them. In doing so you create a feedback loop that will push each of you to new sexual and spiritual heights. With a little bit (okay, a lot) of practice and even more TRUST, not only will sex be orgasmic, but so will your life.