Jun 082007

“I am on a train in the US where the overall atmosphere is volatile. There is danger everywhere. People have formed gangs and territories and carry weapons. You must be careful where you go and with whom you are aligned. I get stopped by security guards who ask me for the address of where I am staying, which I don’t seem to know and can’t properly write down. They empty my bag, take my identity and verbally abuse me, which is common police practice meant to demoralize the detainee. I don’t know if they’ll let me go.” John, New Westminster

Our dreamer spent most of his life taking up responsibility. When he was young, he and his friends bragged to one another how they never cried until, eventually,  it became true. Growing up, John watched his father go silently to and from work every day, providing for the family and keeping complaints he might have had carefully hidden.

As he got older John attended university, acquired a degree of debt, and began to work in a respectable job to pay it off. When the time was expected, he married, had kids and bought a 25 year mortgage on a house. He never imagined that after taking all the proper steps he would find himself miserable.

John’s cage has begun to rattle so much lately, that he can no longer ignore it. His body is suffering painful symptoms, he is having disturbing dreams, is distracted at work, and weeping suddenly for no reason. The tower he’s worked so hard to build up around him has begun crumbling and he can’t think of what to do to stop it.

Mark Henson

But his tower is one amongst millions. The dystopian setting of the dream, where danger and fear are the currency, is a very real picture of what cities look like all over the world. Like him, many people have been working their entire lives for the promise of security, (which is a roundabout word for scarcity), but when you add everyone up, you have a village of fear and loneliness.

Overburdened with responsibility and disentitled from his feelings, John takes up the weapons of self-protection. Under the groupmind pressure to be a provider and pillar of strength, he shuts down his heart and loses his personal identity. He can’t remember where his home-soul is in the dream, as anyone detained from his purpose might not. Like so many others who live on the treadmill, John is a citizen of a police state of mind.

But where the ‘security agenda’ rules too long, chaos will always pull the rug out.

Water levels are rising on the planet as well as in individuals. Weapons are useless against the welling up of change. As John begins to touch how empty and demoralizing living this way feels, he finds himself at a terrifying tipping point where the task being asked of him, and so many others, is to let go of that power for something as yet uncertain.

It will take great courage to give up the busy, victorious identity for something more meaningful. I once heard it said that true masculinity is the ability to perceive a goal and work with fidelity towards it. Though we often focus on the fidelity part, I’m rather more intrigued by the modesty it takes to see what is truly needed in one’s village of things.

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A writer, artist and tender of dreams, Toko-pa has been interviewed by CNN News & BBC Radio and her writing has appeared in publications around the world. Thanks to Skype, she works with dreamers internationally in her Private Dreamwork practice, based on Salt Spring Island in Canada. You can find Toko-pa on Facebook or sign up for her mailing list to receive news about upcoming events.

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  3 Responses to “Dreamspeak: Police State of Mind”

  1. Hi, Toko-Pa. Karen here. You may remember me from your dream class in Toronto. I was in one of Annie’s career writing classes as well, and I took a Friday writing class that you had (you may recall we spoke of an egg for Annie).

    I’m writing to thank you for sending the Dreamspeak e-mails, and to send a comment regarding the “Police State of Mind”.

    Recently, after 6 years of intense study, I was Initiated as a First Degree Wiccan Priestess. I worked hard for it, and I’m proud of it! What does this have to do with Police State? Well, as an introverted kind of person, being in the middle of a Circle, leading others, starting up chants, and teaching left me waaaay out of my comfort zone. Because I thought it would be helpful, I even took a Second City Improv course. I did help, and I got a lot of laughs in the bargain!

    At one point, with no word of a lie, I thought I might not live through it, the tension was so bad. But I could do no other! Being a Priestess was like a “calling” and regardless of how I doubted myself, I couldn’t stop, and I wouldn’t have if I could!

    I don’t recall having any Police State dreams, but just a couple of days after my Initiation, I believe I had what I would call a “reward” dream.

    In the dream, one of the High Priestesses of my tradition was in a schoolyard doing a ritual that I was a participant in. As far as I know, the other participants were students of the school, and not necessarily Wiccan. She gave us some long weeds and told us that we would have to beat the trees with the weeds in order to bring Spring and wake up the trees. I looked closely at the weeds that she gave us, so that I might be able to tell which herbs or plants they might be (as each herb and plant has symbolic significance). But as far as I could see, they were the kind of weeds you might find at the side of the road.

    The trees were all stark and we all wanted Spring to come so we set off to find a tree to beat. I turned around and there it was-the most beautiful tree ever, and it was in full, magnificent blossom.

    BTW-it is a custom in some cultures to beat the trees. Celtic or Norse culture, I believe, in order that they will be fertile.

    I feel that any Police State dreams, for me, may have been avoided because of the spellcraft and ritual work I was doing. I may be wrong, but I have a strong sense that the dream I just described was a reward dream.

    Sorry if the post was overly long.

  2. Thank you Toko-pa. A police state. It speaks to me so much that I don’t have to write here nothing more, except this smiley… 🙂

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