All night I dreamed. The theme of my dreams revolved around finding and maintaining balance. It’s necessary, my dreams told me, to experience the extremes, but it is far more productive to gain balance and let experience come to you in the flow of everyday life. In constantly reaching out for experience, one misses out on that which is—the moment one is in that is full of meaning.
I dreamed that I owed a debt. I put cash into my purse and set out by car to deliver it. I was driving fast. I turned left into a city street and slammed on my brakes! The road was blocked off, under construction. I quickly assessed the situation. On the right I saw a passageway, but I would have to get out and walk. I parked the car and walked to my destination. I delivered the money to the woman I owed it to, a good friend of mine whom I knew when I lived in Sweden, a witch. I left her house only to discover that I did not have my purse. There was still a lot of cash in it and I wanted it; it was a lot of money to lose. I went back to the witch’s house, but I couldn’t find the purse. I knew I would have to let it go. Although it was a lot of money, I knew I didn’t really need it. It was not what had value. Paying my debts and accepting a changed journey had value. And so I walked away without attachment.
I woke up puzzled by the loss of the money, as it seemed to just disappear in my dream, but I didn’t bother trying to solve the mystery of it. Instead, I awoke feeling in good balance. I felt deep contentment with the lessons in my dream, that what once held value may no longer really have meaning, that things of this world are not as important as being open to the constantly changing journey.
My Swedish witch friend showing up in my dream was also significant to me. She had once been hospitalized in a mental institution, right before I met her, for unexplainable occurrences in her life that her husband could not handle. She started a fire simply by staring into the fireplace where no fire or embers existed. She was psychic, able to walk into a house and tell the stories that the house held. She and I had a deep bond that lasted for the few years that I spent with her. She told me I was her infant sister who had died when she was eleven, right about the time I was born. I admired her for her psychic prowess, though it scared me as well. It had hints of my own psychic abilities and I worried that I’d end up in a mental institution too. I wasn’t ready to encounter those abilities more fully at the time, I know that now. But what makes us ready?
Change takes work, the work of changing the self at a very deep level. No matter how that kind of change comes about there is suffering to endure. Many people have profound experiences that quickly catapult them into enlightened beings. Near death experiences often have this affect. Upon return to life, such survivors immediately live from this new place, changed beings forever. Others have to work hard to achieve that enlightenment even though they may have had previous experiences of it. Others seek it out their entire lives, aware that there is more to life than the daily grind. A changed reality, however, will only have significant impact when we are fully ready for it.
I had a near-death experience in my teens when I jumped into the churning waters of a lake after an exhausting 50 mile bike ride. The roughness of the water, the result of a tremendous storm that was blowing through, was too much for my tired body and I sank beneath the waves into the calmness below. I left my body and experienced utter calm bliss, but knew I couldn’t stay, that it wasn’t my time. Some kind of energy that was not my own shot me back up to the surface and back into my heavy human body. I knew at the time that death was nothing to fear, but I couldn’t take the experience forward. Indeed, it would take me another few decades to discover that at the time of that near-drowning I wasn’t even done with the traumatic childhood experiences that would impact me so deeply for most of my life. It wasn’t until I was 50 that I was finally ready to face the painful work that had to be done. That painful work liberated me in the most profound ways, more deeply than that near-death experience did.
In the brief episodes and glimpses of another self, in the near-death experience and the projections of my psychic self in my witch friend, I was being shown a future possibility. In my dream I finally paid the debt to my witch friend, thanking her for the part she played in my evolving life, showing me that future self, telling me not to be afraid to face her, for her own experiences in the mental institution only solidified her commitment to fully living as her true psychic self. I had to be ready to meet that future self and fully live her too, and when I was finally ready recapitulation appeared as the main path.
The hard work of recapitulation offers liberation from our traumas and subsequent mental, physical, and emotional issues. It allows us the means by which to arrive at a new place, finally freed to flow with our changing life, freed of what once held us back from fuller experience. In accepting our changing journey, facing our suffering in the flow of everyday life, we achieve deep healing and we are able to maintain the kind of balance that my dream spoke of, balance that is achieved by facing the extremes within us as part of the healing journey.
So, if you looking for balance in your life, I suggest looking at what’s really important. What in your life is showing you the way? There is work involved, and everyone’s journey is unique, but I guarantee that if you allow yourself to take the journey, leaving behind what no longer is necessary—by resolving the past—your future self will thank you!
The work of suffering is liberating. It is the changing journey in the flow of everyday life.
Staying open to always accepting the changing journey,