Lending ourselves to what the poet Keats called ‘soul-making’, we are invited to make something out of what we’re being given. Every morning when we set aside time upon waking in order to tend dreams, we are therefore soul-making, tending the soul of the world.
Here is another soul-making practice you may want to try. Let’s call it Dreaming Poesis:
Poiesis (from Ancient Greek: ποίησις) is “the activity in which a person brings something into being that did not exist before.” Poiesis is etymologically derived from the ancient Greek term ποιέω, which means “to make“.
Step 1. Start with the dream as it’s being/been given to you from the Dreamtime presences. Write the dream down, speak it aloud, record it, draw it, whatever works. Just so that you have something to work with. Remember it need not have any attendant ‘pictures’ to be a dream—it can be a ‘mood’ upon waking, or even a bodily ‘symptom.’ If you write the dream down or speak it aloud, however, endeavor to keep it in the present tense. This will help keep the dream ‘open.’ This first step is practiced to acknowledge and thank the Dreamtime presences for what they have given you, regardless of the content.
Step 2. Next, try ‘painting’ a poem of the dream, making a living poetic picture of the dream images, feeling your way into what the dream is doing.
Step 3. Share these poetic dream paintings with others. Post them to social media, on the Dream-Centered Living Facebook page and on your own pages. Tag your friends and invite them to make something out of what they’re being given. And post them here, in the comments section below. If only we could begin an ongoing, intimate, and poetic conversation between dreams, dream tenders, and the holy presences of the Dreamtime.
To get the imaginal, dreaming ball rolling, here is a wee example:
Step 1. write the dream down (keeping it in the present tense)
Dream: Freezing the Capacity to Feel with Snow
The details of this dream are very fuzzy. I am not “in” this dream (as one of the players in the unfolding action). Instead, I have been tasked with bearing witness to what is unfolding. A couple—it seems a man and a woman—are looking back at the boyhood life of another man, as if trying to make sense of what he’s become, when it’s somehow revealed that as a young child he was an intense, connected-to-earth feeler. He would take himself out into the snow, with very little in the way of protection, so as to ‘freeze’ his capacity to feel bodily. Anything. This is how he eventually taught himself to ‘think.’ And this is how he became so far removed from the connectedness of earth and life. This is all that I can recall.
Step 2. make the dream into something of a poem
Freezing or How Not to Feel
Dreamer! Bear witness:
A man and a woman look back
at the boyhood life of another man,
trying to make sense of what he’s become.
What has he become?
As a young boy he was intensely connected
to Earth, a tender expression
of her emotional being.
But by the age of about five or so, the boy began
taking himself out into the snow, unprotected,
so as to freeze his capacity to feel anything bodily.
Thus the boy taught himself to think.
Step 3. Share. Please. Some of us are better at this social media thing than others, but it doesn’t have to be shared through social media. Share it across the breakfast table. Or in your dream group. With a tree. Or stones. The point is that it’s now more important than ever to encourage practices that help us to feel our way into the hidden-from-plain-view world, or, as the Sufis call it, ‘the place of nowhere’, the Imaginal Realm, and to establish ourselves as trustworthy practitioners and true friends of the Dreamtime.
I so look forward to hearing from you,
Thank you for this Renee! I love the possibility of making art and poems out of our dreams. And talking to stones! Makes my heart happy.
Talking to stones makes for an especially happy heart (and Happy Head, haha!) if we learn to listen to stones, too, and to trees, and to make something of their dreams. Thank you, Teryne.
Thanks Renee I like the speaking dreams out loud to someone something and creating the dream in poem form. This honoring dreams in different ways allows me to stay with my dream longer. Being respectively present.
Thank you, Joei. Speak the dream out loud, entrusting it to the care of ‘someone or something’, as you say . . . and then offer yourself reciprocally as ‘listener’ to the ‘dream’ of the someone or something who has listened to your dream. You will want to get as inwardly still as possible.
Renee, thank you so much for this. I am so moved by this dream. Thank you for reminding me of that place of nowhere, the hidden -from – plain- view, the creative imaginal realm. This new job that I’m in feels like I’m constantly hitting walls or they’re hitting me and my to do list grows and grows. I’ve never experienced anything like this before, I mean,the complicated nature of the work and constant demands. I’m always tired. Today driving home from work, I felt myself relaxing into the impossibility of it all, and of just about everything these days. If everything is impossible now, I mean everything that we know, than the possible must be here more than ever too, that place of creative nowhere for no reason, for
no purpose, for nothing already known or here already. I don’t know what to do, how to be, even what to ask, or even what is being asked of me. Frozen in my ways, solid mass, heavy, immovable with a tiny tiny melting sensation today driving home from work.
So lovely to hear from you, Linda. And thank you. Yes, I find the dream very moving too. That place of constantly hitting walls, or being hit by them with a ‘to do’ list that grows and grows that you relate is very familiar to a lot of folks right now, it seems. Me too. And you are exactly right: “for nothing already known or here already.” Not knowing what to do, how to be, or even what to ask, or what is being asked of you is the exact right set of conditions for “deep listening”, as Rumi calls it. If only we can surrender to it and stop trying to figure everything out.
Oh Renee this amazing, the words were so eloquently written as the dream but the poem as well. It will be great to connect with dreamers outside the groups. I totally had a “pop up” with the part about bodily feeling or awareness because I’ve been really noticing recently feeling such a heightened state of awareness. It felt weird like my soul and brain were using a body that was foreign. (Chuckle lol)
It was so odd to be in SUCH a place… to the point I laughed to myself.. am I going crazy?.. then around that same time frame my late friend Travis, came to me in the Dreamtime. The only one of my people from beyond that had not come to me yet. It was beautiful but I did not see the connection of the 2 until began to write a coment about your dream.
And to take that a step further I was thinking about how it was that They we’re connected was it true and not guessed? It’s the “knowing” that you teach about. This is really the cool part.
When I have visions or that knowing thing it starts far a away from me. But it’s connected to my forehead, I never remember what chakra that is or what it does but it’s that one for sure! Then, the same pulling feeling I had that night when I was pulled from my dream which resulted in the beginning of our friendship.. it’s exactly like that…(wait for it)…
but it’s not because that motion is going toward me, well toward my forehead rather. It’s amazing how when you type even about the Dreamtime… what beauty and clarity evolves from it. I’m excited to see what will become as I drift off to sleep with a feeling within like I just left a dream group
thank you Renee Much Love
No, Brianna, you are definitely NOT crazy! The so-called dead come to us in ways that we need them to, that we will readily recognize, but they are ‘here’ with us all the time but usually without us being aware, without us being sensitive to their hidden-from-plain-view presences. Soul and heart and brain do use a body that is mostly foreign to us (at least in the waking-world when we think we are ‘awake’) . . . it’s the living, dreaming body, the connected body, that we’re trying to sensitize to the hidden-from-plain-view presences. Once ‘awakened, we want to lend these ‘living, feeling, awakening bodies’ to the hidden-from-plain view world in ongoing, ever creative ways. I too am excited to discover what unfolds when you lend yourself this way. Keep us posted!