I enjoyed the strong imagery of this post by Diane Ludeking very much and wanted to share it. Though it is described as a visualization/meditation, it had a distinctly dream-like quality to it. It made me reflect on the the powerful ways in which the imagery of dreams can be accessed to articulate personal narratives. I liked how Diane offered the reader an opportunity to complete the visualisation with imagery of their own.
When I made the decision to return to ‘The South’, the beginning of my Wheel of Initiation practice, I did so in the context of several insights gained from the time I had already spent in the West about agreements I had made over the years with myself which were no longer serving me. The first of these was the agreement that I had to do everything on my own – I could not engage the support or help of others. This resulted in the shouldering of impossible burdens that were unsustainable and resulted in paralysis (no action or forward motion at all). This agreement also fed into a second agreement. This was the one that said I had no time to do anything and needed to rush to complete things. I think over-burdened people do this because they are so weighed down it is a logical way to try to lighten the load! Of course, it does nothing to the sort, and adds to the sense of being under tremendous pressure.
In response to advice from my mentor, I formed a circle of my own to go through the Wheel with, acknowledging that though ultimately the responsibility for my own transformation rested with me, the support and space provided by a cohort were vital parts of this process. Returning to the South, to the beginning, permitted me to get in sync with the newly formed circle and also to slow down, to break the agreement that I did not have time and had to rush my way through things. In a way, both of these agreements came under the umbrealla of a larger one, the agreement I had made that life is a burden.
The night after my first circle meeting, I did a self-made ritual to deal with some weighty ancestor business I was carrying around. This resulted in the poem ‘Recycling Ancestors Part 1‘.
That night I had a powerful dream.
I was about to give birth. My daughter and her friends were gathered around me, asking me if it was painful to give birth. Yes, I told them, but the pain helps you to give birth. I then led them in a song to help the baby come. As we sang, blood started to drip down my leg. See! I told them, Your song is strong! The contractions were now coming thick and fast, but it was still not time to give birth. I noticed a nun walking towards me down the road. She was elderly, kind and gently powerful. I liked her very much. She stopped and smiled and asked me if I was ready to give birth yet. I smiled back and replied, “Not quite yet”. At this point I woke up.
In the spirit of Diane’s post, and as I have reset my intentions and begun the Wheel again, I have wondered what happens next in the dream. What is it that I am giving birth to? And who is the nun? In asking these questions, I open myself up in the waking world to the clues the dreaming world are giving me. Dreams can be a self-made light post, sometimes baffling, but always worth noting down and reflecting upon. I write my dreams down as much as possible, even the funny, don’t-seem-relevant ones. Sometimes I don’t write them down because I am too tired or sleepy! But when I make the effort to scrawl even a few words down in the dark, the rewards are truly worth it. The dream that I described here is all about being on the edge of giving birth to Myself. Aware of the difficulty, embracing the labour, summoning support, though also holding back, “Not quite yet”.
But getting there. If there is one thing I know about birth in the waking world, it’s that once labour has established itself, there is no going back! One way or another, a birth must occur.
A door with a weather worn sign hanging above it comes into view between the bobbing heads of my heavily armed escorts. We are hustling through the underbrush of a place I don’t recognize, urgency is in their faces. I do not know how I got here or what we are running from, but I follow them, certain that they can offer me protection from imminent danger. The door opens automatically as though someone on the other side is awaiting our arrival. I am astounded to see that the door is thicker than I am wide and appears to be solid steel. Frightened by the necessity of such extremes, I obediently cross the threshold. Once inside, I quickly assess my surroundings. It is a small, cold, dimly lit room that is no doubt a bunker built to withstand the most gruesome of attacks. Surely there is nothing that…
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