Tag Archives: dream

Narrator – Snow face


Every night a dream carries me away. This icy clear night at the beginning of December a dream led me to another world. At new moon I lied under the starry sky perfectly still in my sleeping bag to avoid heat loss. Every now and then I felt a tingling in my hands and feet and then they were cold again. My breath – a temporal home for the villagers massacred by my fellow militia members and me during the night fire in the forest – watched over me.

It got colder; my body relaxed itself [1] and my eyes blinked no more. The darkness and the firmament sucked me in. I hovered with the galaxies in the universe. No earth, no worries, no sound, completely absorbed in the infinity.

Sterrennacht[2]

From the edge of the universe I heard footsteps approaching. In the corner of my eyes a shadow appeared. The shadow became larger and I heard another breath next to my breath. After an eternity the dark face of my mother bent over me. Her curly hair had turned grey. My mother had come to take me home. In her peaceful face I saw that I was never gone away; within her heaven and earth came together.

In this peaceful state I heard a voice. My mother and my eyesight faded. Someone tried to wake me up. Very slowly my breath returned to everyday world: the firmament and the earth were separated again with the opening of my sleeping bag. I was stone-cold and just barely conscious.

Sterrenstelsels[3]

The voice took me and after an eternal struggle with my stilled body we entered a lit hot room. The voice undressed me and covered itself and me close to each other under a duvet. Slowly I could see again. I saw a woman’s face with curly grey hair. She really shivered from the cold. After a very long time I warmed a little; only halfway through the next day my fingers and feet started to tingle again. I found myself in bed in a caravan.

By evening I could eat and drink a little. She asked me indignantly why I watched outside in this severe frost under the starry sky in a thin sleeping bag. My answer followed a few days later. To my question how she had found me, she replied that during a short evening stroll she saw occasionally vapour from the ground beside the path; this vapour was caused by my exhalation. My breath had guarded me.

One day later we moved together to a winter camping to let me recover. The owner of the camp-site was not happy with my appearance, but my guardian angel took care that we got a place for some nights. The first days she mothered me. She cut my hair, She shaved my beard and she washed my clothes: I was presentable to the world again.

Wintercamping[4]

In the confines of the caravan on the winter camping we told each other the main lines of our life stories. Her name was Carla Drift and she moved through Europe with a tractor–caravan combination. Since autumn her life was empty as the trees in the winter. At the end of the previous summer a man had attacked her honour and life. In self-defence she killed the assailant. Herewith she lost her innocence: a part of her had died.

I told her about my life as a child soldier in a previous incarnation; at the end of one night we had set the forest surrounding a village on fire. Our militia shot on everything and everyone who came out of the forest. I always carried the ghosts of these villagers with me; their breath was my breath and they had guarded me in the bright icy night. In memory of my mother I was on my way “εἰς τὴν Πόλιν”.

We decided to travel to Istanbul together. We alternated driving the tractor; now and then I was again a charioteer in a white winter landscape. The journey of more than 2000 kilometres lasted three months with several resting. The end of winter and the beginning of spring we stayed in Istanbul. During the visits to the many houses of God in this city – including the Hagia Sophia, we admired these buildings with domes as symbol of the bond between earth and firmament.

Hagia Sophia[5]


[1] See also for hypothermia: Stark, Peter, The last breath, the limits of adventure. New York: Ballantine Books, 2001 p. 11 – 24

[2] Each light speck is a galaxy – some of these are as old as 13.2 billion years – the Universe is estimated to contain 200 billion galaxies. Source image: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universe

[3] Source image: http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/iotd.html# – Hubble Watches Star Clusters on a Collision Course

[4] Source image:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camping

[5] Source image: http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Istanboel

Advertisements

Narrator – mask of an idol


In the inverted world of Amsterdam I had received the appearance of an idol. Suddenly I was more than welcome everywhere; I was asked at performances and for parties. Everyone wanted to be seen with me or in my neighbourhood. For other people I seemed to carry a divine aureole. In my vicinity strangers felt to be included in a heavenly glow. They all dreamt that I owned the gateway to Heaven [1].

[2]

New lovers imagined themselves in an space travel with me, connected with the universe or included in dream-world more beautiful than life. I was for them the connection to an everlasting paradise.

[3]

In my wealth a Goddess appeared  – again a white [4] Citroën DS – wherein I accomplished the glory humming on the road [7], just like the charioteer Kṛṣṇa [5] in the Bhagavad Gita [6]. As Idol and centre I encouraged, I steered and I shaped the world around me; I was the eye of a cyclone – even empty, temporary and stilled inside.

Idolatry

 Transitory in one sigh

Seen in the Sunlight

Beauty is a terrible and awful thing! It is terrible because it has not been fathomed, for God sets us nothing but riddles. Here the boundaries meet and all contradictions exist side by side. [8]  This citation from The Brothers Karamazov by Dostojewski described my volatile position as idol within the inverted world in Amsterdam. This quote was also the motto of Confessions of a Mask by Yukio Mishima from which I derived to some extent an interpretation of my role as icon in the world where men love of men; for my lovers, I was not only their beloved, but I was also their competitor in their love for other men in the polygamous homosexual world in Amsterdam at that time.

[9]

In addition to an interpretation of my idle position in the inverted world in Holland, I was looking for insight in the development of my life. After reading the tetralogy Sea of Fertility [10] by Yukio Mishima, the fourfold reincarnation of the second main person gave some overview of my situation.

[11]

In line with this way of thinking, the first reincarnation in my life – under the name Kṛṣṇa – covered the period from my early childhood to my departure from Kenya. Now – as a temporary idol – I was at the height of my second incarnation in my life. I foresaw that my life as icon would soon implode; I decided to leave the inverted world of Holland for some time. After my share in a serious war crime during my first reincarnation in Kenya, I wished to guide the continuation of my life in a correct manner. It was also time for penance for this war crime.


[1] See the book Genesis 28:10-19 in the Old Testament for Jacob’s dream wherein Jacob takes a ladder with descending and ascending angels for the gate to Heaven. See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacob’s_Ladder

[2] Painting: Jacob’s dream of a ladder of angels, c. 1690, by Michael Willmann. Source image:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dream

[3] The Dream by Henri Rousseau, 1910. Source image: http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Droom

[4] The name Arjuna means amongst others “wit, clear, silver”; one may recognise also “arh” in the name meaning “worthy, capable of”. Arjuna is one of the main characters in the Mahābhārata. He is one of the five brothers who live together with one wife Draupadi – the most beautiful and influential wife of her time – in polyandry. The five brother fight for their rightful share of the kingdom, for the honour of Draupadi and for maintenance of the world order

[5] In Sanskrit Kṛṣṇa means amongst others “black”, “blue black”, “the dark period of the moon-cycle” Source: electronic version of the dictionary Monier-Williams – MWDDS V1.5 Beta

[6] See also: http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhagavad_gita

[7] See also: Katz, Ruth Cecily, Arjuna in the Mahābhārata: Where Krishna is, there is victory. Delhi: Molital Banarsidass Publishers, 1990

[8] Source: Dostoevsky, Fyodor, The Karamazov Brothers. Ware: Wordsworth Edition Limited, 2007, p. 114

[9] Source image: Frontside of the cover of Mishima, Yukio. Confessions of a Mask. New York: A New Directions Book, 1958 (Eleventh printing)

[10] See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sea_of_Fertility

[11] Source image: Hatsuhana doing penance under the Tonosawa waterfall van Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797–1861). This image is used as cover for the French edition of the Sea of Fertility by Yukio Mishima.

Introduction: Three – Object in the middle – part 3


In the previous post you and I have made ​​a first exploration to the role of symbols – like “objects in the middle” – to establish and consolidate mutual confidence. We have noticed that the symbols call hope, expectation and deep trust in people, but that symbols also give rise to deep disgust. In addition, symbols may incite violence, destruction and outright hatred. Sometimes symbols have a comprehensive influence and provide a strong bond of mutual trust, but symbols rarely provide an input to the “perfect oneness” for all. [1].

Now you and I encounter another “object in the middle” that is seen by many people as a place to establish and maintain mutual confidence with the close family. This “object in the middle” is our home [2]. For individuals, the uterus is the first house where human beings pass about the whole evolution before their birth. After birth a baby depends on its parents, educators and a community where the child grows to adulthood. As adult the environment with which one has become accustomed, is seen as home.

Hunter-gatherers experience their habitat – literally, where one lives – as their familiar surroundings. Violations of trust, that may arise between the hunter-gatherers and their habitat, is – as far as we know – restored through rituals. E.g. in rituals hunter-gatherers identify themselves with their prey for two reasons. They seek redemption for the sin of killing their prey, and they identify with their prey to maintain their unique system of survival for both hunter and prey [3].

[4]

Pastoral people will also see their habitat – in which they wander – as their home and environment. Their habitat provides forage for their herds and, indirectly, for themselves. Through rituals pastoral peoples try to maintain trust between the knowable and unknowable habitat on one hand and themselves on the other hand. In previous posts, you and I have seen the Trito myth and the cattle-cycle as examples of these myths and rituals.

Farmers will experience their fields and crops as their habitat. Initial the farmers move on after a short time when the land has impoverished by growing the same crops several times in succession. Once the farmers have developed a periodic system for maintaining a balance in time between different crops and the soil, they stay in permanent residences. They see their habitat as their home.

Later in our Odyssey, we will encounter people who are constantly at home everywhere. A glimpse of this, we may see in the following poem by Rӯokan:

Even though I sleep
Every night in my life
Always somewhere else,
The eternal dream takes me
everywhere to my home.
[5]

Many people see a home as a safe haven and as a origin from where the world is experienced. They see a house not only as a familiar environment, but they largely identify themselves with their home: they give shape to their house and the house expresses who they are.

 [6]

In this respect, our present society only recognises people when one has a nationality and a permanent residence. Without possession of a nationality and a permanent residence, people loose many of their common rights within today’s society. We see that today’s society gives much faith to a home as “object in the middle”. In other times and under different circumstances, people have given another value and trust to a home as “object in the middle”.

Why is our society so attached to a permanent residence? Has our society only confidence in its people with this specific “object in the middle”?

The previous night, you and I have slept under the stars. Tonight you and I will sleep in a caravan where the ceiling will show the sky in the dark as a reminder of the sky in the open air. Tomorrow you and I will sleep in a house.

The next post is about the house of God as “object in the middle”.


[1] See posts related to Introduction of “One”

[2] In Sanskrit “grham” is one of the words for house. This word possibly consists of “grh” meaning “take, grasp en encompass” and “aham” meaning “I” – first person, singular, nominative.

[3] See also: Eliade, Mircea, A History of Religious Ideas, Volume I, page 5.

[4] Source image: http://www.defeatdiabetes.org/advocacy_community/text.asp?id=MADDCAP_Impact_Food

[5] Free rendering of translation of Tanka from Rӯokan on page 170 in the bundle: Tooren, J.van, Tanka – het lied van Japan. Amsterdam: Meulenhoff, 1983

[6] Source image: http://www.drsfilm.tv/en/utrecht_by_the_sea

Introduction: Two – Night at the beginning of spring


You and I have tried for several years to see the first rays of sunlight on the first day of spring. Many generations before us have looked for the moment the sun rose above the horizon on the first day of spring at exact six o’clock in the morning. To date you and I have not succeeded to experience this, because once it rained all night, another time it was foggy, or one of us was sick and other years we had our work commitments.

[1]

For you and me, this moment is so important because our ancestors needed this moment to determine the time of the year. This time served as a benchmark for e.g . determining the sowing time of wheat [2].
The importance of this time for our ancestors was evident because in all Catholic churches the altar faces east – the center of the windows above the altar receives the first ray of sunrise exactly at sunrise at 6 o’clock in the morning on the first day of spring. The sermon is always held in the direction of the morning light – the light of the resurrection (of nature).
During funerals, the deceased are carried with their feet forward towards the altar, so that the first thing  the dead will see on the day of the resurrection, is the morning light. Many graves of ancestors also have this direction [3].

Now we are sitting on a peninsula with water all around us. Just to the north it is connected to the land. There is little wind but it promises to be a cold and beautiful night.

After diner in twilight we prepare for the night at moonlight:

[4]

“Did you see my flashlight?”

“It is full moon, no flashlight needed.”

“I like to set the alarm correctly.”

“The alarm is set at five.”

“Enough time to wake up.”

“I hope the night and dawn will be clear. Then we may see the sun rise nicely.”

“We’ll see.”

“It will be a cold night.”

“That is the reason we have warm sleeping bags.”

“I hope there will be no fog and mist.”

“What is wrong with fog and mist.”

“It will spoil our view of the sunrise.”

“You want the sunrise with fireworks and Clarion blasts?”

“Better than waking up in a thick fog.  After so many years we have deserved it. We are not that often in the open air at the onset of the spring.”

“From primeval fog we originate, perhaps it is more realistic to look at the fog.”

“I’d rather see the view that many people before us have looked at. There is good reason for the orientation of the altars to the East.”

“OK, then a beautiful resurrection tomorrow morning. But don’t worry if it we have a different view.”

“How shall we lie, head over to the West and feet to the East?”

“Similar to our funeral. With the feet to the altar.”

“I don’t want to think of my funeral. I’m needed at my family and at my work.”

“I prefer to live. But I would like to be unique by following the footsteps of our ancestors. Who has done this before?”

“No one is as crazy as us.”

“It is nice to look at the sky during a clear night. Our ancestors have done this so often. When you snore I’ll have a view at the universe. Tomorrow I hope to share the unique view that our ancestors have seen. We deserve it after all these years”

“Will you also share the day of resurrection your ancestors?”

“I don’t know. Sleep well, have a nice dream.”

“Dream of dreams”.


[1] Source image: POVRAY – Sunrise JvL

[2] Calvin, William H., De Rivier die tegen de Berg opstroomt – een reis naar de oorsprong van de aarde en de mens. 1992

[3] Depending on the latitude, graves are oriented to the East or to the South. Source must be retrieved.

[4] Source image: POVRAY – Moonlight JvL

Introduction: One – The Universe is but a Dream


The second classic that you and I visit on our detour, is “The Universe is as but a Dream” or “Maya “[1] in Sanskrit.

[2]

Several Eastern religions are based on the premise that all phenomena are included in or come from a universal being/entity (e.g. Âtman[3] or Brahman[4]). Beyond this universal entity, there is no independent being /entity: only this universal entity exists. All other observations beyond this entity are illusions. People rarely perceive this universal entity: mostly the myriads of illusions are regarded as separate illusionary realities.

[5]

Within the framework of this classic ordinary people experience the transient as permanent, and the permanent and transient.

The difference between “Solipsism” and “The Universe is but a Dream” is the fact that a Solipsist regards his own consciousness as the complete and universal entity. Within “The Universe is but a Dream”, the own consciousness and the perception is seen as illusions and dreams, that may or may not reflect a universal being/entity.

Solipsism is a classic supported by few, because:

  • Solipsism is inwardly consistent and logical, but it is not falsifiable, not refutable or provable[6];
  • Solipsism is exclusively confined to the consciousness of the observer, beyond which nothing exists. This hypothesis is very restrictive for scientists.

“The Universe is but a Dream” is a way of thinking with many manifestations. The “Ideas” of Plato have characteristics of this classic. The “Look” and “Bad Faith” from Sartre[7] – whereby you and I lose our freedom and are reduced to a thing[8] – are also characteristics of this classic. In the later chapters, the frame of mind of this second classic will appear in many forms.

Will you and I have internalized and surpassed the classic “The Universe is but a Dream” at the end of the Odyssey when we return home? We don’t know yet.

The next post will include the third classic “Pantheism”.


[1] “Creating an illusion” in Sanskrit. Source: electronic version od the dictionary Monier-Williams – MWDDS V1.5 Beta.

[2] Source immage: http://kunstbende.nl/nl/272-medewerkers – Anne Denneman

[3] In Sanskrit “Âtman” means amongst others “breath, universal soul, individual soul, nature, essence, highest existing entity).  “Âtman” consists of “Ât” meaning “thus, further” and “man” meaning “thinking, consciousness, knowledge, conceive”.  Source: electronic version of the dictionary Monier-Williams – MWDDS V1.5 Beta.

[4] “Brahman” means amongst others “religious of spiritual knowledge/wisdom”. Source: electronic version of the dictionary Monier-Williams – MWDDS V1.5 Beta. The origin of this word is possible the root “brh” meaning “worship, enlarge, grow, enhance” and “man” meaning “thinking, consciousness, knowledge, conceive”.

[5] Source image: http://www.edc.ncl.ac.uk/highlight/rhnovember2006g02.php

[6] See also: Solipsism in Wikepedia

[7] See also: Sartre, Jean-Paul, Being and Nothingness. New York: Washington Square Press: 1977

[8] In chapter 5, you and I will meet this way of seeing.

Introduction: One – Solipsism


On our Odyssey you and I will encounter three obvious classics. Classics are views and ideas that do not suit anybody (completely), but are still worth studying to progress further. We make in this introduction a short detour along the three classics, “Solipsism”, “The universe is but a dream” and “Pantheism”.

Solipsism[1]

Solipsism knows and recognizes only one single consciousness that completely coincides with the awereness of the observer. In the original form of solipsism, there is no existence outside the consciousness of the observer. On our Odyssey, you and I will encounter many elements and forms of Solipsism.

[2]

At the first stage – described in chapter one – the oneness includes at first sight several features of Solipsism, but the oneness can easily avoid Solipsism, because oneness at this stage will be soon divided in two or more parts, and it may not be excluded that all these parts have a separate consciousness. In addition, one is the recurring initial divider of every prime.

At the second and third stage we will not easily encounter solipsism.

At the fifth stage, each of the five basic realities may easily degenerate into Solipsism, because every reality may regard itself as the only true consciousness within which everything is fully and completely enclosed, e.g.:

  • Only natural science based on facts and logic is true: everything else is a delusion or worse. In this extreme form natural science migrates to religion, and currently religion is not included within the competence of natural science.
  • Only feeling matters. Everything else is a reality from where we should keep ourselves.
  • “Only in the void I can live, elsewhere I never found shelter[3]”. This is a pitfall for zealous practitioners of meditation. As lured by the Sirens [4] these practitioners are attracted into the void putting aside the other realities.
  • Everything changes and only change counts[5].
  • All is fully interconnected: outside this interconnectedness nothing exists. At the last stage on our Odyssey named “Zero – not one, not two” we will see how this manner of Solipsism is surpassed.

At our seventh stage we will encounter elements of Solipsism in all seven entities, e.g.:

  • In the reality of Ishvara[6] – where you and I will meet god, gods and religion – only the reality of the own god, gods or religion is recognised as the existing reality. Other gods and religions are often contested with all possible means. Only the own god/gods and religion is regarded as the sole true reality outside which nothing exists (or is allowed to exist).
  • Only the reality of “here and now” exists. Everything else is unimportant or does not exist.

At the end of our Odyssey on our homecoming at “Zero – not one, not two” we will look back if every manner of solipsism in the seven realities is surpassed.

The next post will cover the second classic “The universe is but a dream”.


[1] See also: http://www.iep.utm.edu/solipsis/

[2] Source of image: http://www.huubmous.nl/2010/02/01/het-solipsisme-van-een-kind/

[3] Free rendering of a verse written by Jan Jacob Slauerhoff  “Only in my poems I may live, elsewhere I never found shelter”.

[4] See also Homerus’ Odyssey.

[5] See also Heraklitus:  “πάντα χωρεῖ καὶ οὐδὲν μένει”” meaning “everything changes and nothing remains untouched”. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heraclitus

[6] A philosophical concept of God in Hinduism, see also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ishvara. In  Sanskrit the word “Ishvara” consists of the noun “ish” meaning “god, ruler” – Wherein the German word “ich” may be recognised –, the noun “va” meaning “wind, ocean, water, stream, going” and the root “ra” meaning “give, influence”. Source: electronic version of the dictionary Monier-Williams – MWDDS V1.5 Beta.