Seven months before my husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer, I was plagued by a series of unsettling dreams; some pointed unequivocally to his subsequent death; others spoke as oracles did with forked tongues. However, there was one dream in particular that convinced me not only of life beyond life as we know it, but also of life beyond death.
I was awakened by my husband's voice: "Who's coming up the stairs?" And I remembered seeing in my dream two translucent shadows ( like wings) coming up the stairs and standing before us at the foot of our bed. These were strange beings without human features, shapeless, giving the impression of wings--translucent, elusive wings. Yet I knew somehow they were wise and sentient beings, deep with a knowing beyond this world. They were coming for my husband. I placed my hand over his body. Not now, not yet, I said.
In retrospect, I see these dreams as shifts in alignment, much like the moving and sliding of plates on the outer earth surface when a stressed fault ruptures. Our sensory apparatus, responding to our own psychic and emotional fault lines, tilt and move to match the incline of new perceptual fields. When that happens, we open floodgates to new images and metaphors, new ways of seeing.
If we are indeed matter evolving towards consciousness, then dreams have a large role in bringing us to consciousness. The inner realm parallels the outer realm in ways that defy logic. And the outer world, far from being random, reverberates with echoes of its own inner state. In the few months preceding the diagnosis of my husband's illness, our outer world was shaking with signs of our dismantling: our youngest son developed problems at school, appliances in the house kept breaking down one after the other--the fridge, washing-machine, garage door, furnace. It seemed a major upheaval in our lives was being announced on every level of consciousness.
Strange as this situation may seem to those who firmly believe in a solid- matter world ( as I once did), the possibility of dreams being precognitive or prophetic is not really so far-fetched if one considers recent developments in the field of physics. Here the search for solid matter has uncovered a paradox--that things are in reality "no-thing." The search for what actually makes up matter has brought the physicist face to face with empty space or vacuum. But this vacuum is not really empty at all; it is a bubbling sea of wave potential--un-manifested electrons, virtual (but not fictional) electrons that can materialize, that is, become positive particles when sufficient energy is made available to them. If enough energy is added to the zero-point field of quantum vacuum, this empty space is capable of spontaneously giving birth to bits of real, tangible "stuff." Such is the theory behind Big Bang--the birth of the Universe.
In effect then, according to quantum theory, something can come out of nothing. Yet this something is temporary at best, for the Universe is overwhelmingly nothing. We are nothing. We, like matter, spontaneously bubble up and disappear; we, like the particles, erratically dissolve into wave functions. We are temporary states, insubstantial as dreams.
Humbling as this notion may be, it is the only way we can access infinity, the only way we can understand that we are more than our physical bodies. Might dreams be the avenue through which we connect to the field of global consciousness? Might dreams be part of the brain's ability to access a realm beyond space and time that embraces not only the present, but past and future as well?
It is this ability that Joseph Chilton Pearce so passionately argues for in "Evolution's End" ( Harper San Francisco : 1992) where he points to our innate ability to move beyond space and time. This is the same ability he sees in the idiot-savant ( so popularly characterized in "Rain Man"). Pearce gives as examples the "calendrical twins," who have both been institutionalized since age 7. The twins cannot fend for themselves or add up simple numbers; yet, they have demonstrated the most remarkable mathematical ability. They can, for example, give instantaneous responses to questions like these: Which date will Easter fall on 10,000 years from now? Assuming that there is one grain of rice on the first of 64 squares and assuming that the grain is doubled on each subsequent square, how many grains of rice will there be on the final square?
How is it that these "savants" who can neither read nor write be capable of such highly complex mathematical skills? asks Pearce. His suggestion is that somehow their brains have been able to resonate with a narrow spectrum of field knowledge. Intelligence exists as separate fields of capacity and the twins have been able to access a spectrum of these fields.
So can we --if we allow ourselves this capacity by cultivating the wave-form potential within us. The choice is ours to develop this potential by nurturing our power of connection through dream work, meditation, brain entrainment, prayer, through ways that allow us to be in touch with the field beyond space and time. This we can do by making time for Spiritwork--silence, solitude, inwardness. Spiritwork asks that we listen to ourselves, our bodies and know what speaks within. Most of all, it asks that we surrender the self in order to find it. And this is why the path is most fruitful because the self that surfaces eventually is shapeless, translucent, elusive like dreams, yet deep with a sense that surpasses all understanding.
Copyright 2006 Mary Desaulniers