Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Second Dream of First Night

I didn't recall this one until I was well into my first cup of coffee for the new day:

I was a participant in some kind of casual cross-country bicycle race/competition somewhere (here in Taiwan, or a morphing of several geographical locales).

For whatever reason (good starting position and the casual nature of the event?), I started out in front. We were free to stop for rests, etc. and I guess that is what other participants were doing. In my dream, I clearly remember a group of cyclists stopping off at a temple to worship the local gods while I continued alone, passing them on. There were certain stations one had/could stop at to do different things along the way, numbered like golf course holes.

Problem was, for the life of me, beyond the #3 or #4 stop, I could not find any signs directing the route. So I dropped back and retraced the route. Then I just sort of dropped out, checked out some of the other sights, and went back to the organizer’s booth (in the dream, simply following the other participants was not an option I guess because that is not how the dream logically progressed-- the other bikers sort of mysteriously passed out of sight without me ever seeing any of them again). I did hear a few others complain of not being able to spot the signs, although the organizer was adamant he had set them up.

During this latter stage, there was some other minor apparent flaw due to the organizers that came to my attention. This hick-up was not in the bicycle route part of the event, but in what may have been one of the optional stop-off events. It's all too foggy now.

So what might this one mean? Time to slow down and retrace some steps? (that's what dream interpretation is all about, really). Consistent with the earlier dream, a mild sense of injustice? Don't take the speck out of your neighbors' eye until you take the log out of your own? Guys who start out first up front finish last? Don't eat cheesecake at 10:00 pm before going to bed? I remember reading some years ago that the mind tends to operate with the same points in mind when it comes to serial dreams in the same evening. Help! I need an interpreter (or maybe a psychologist?).

Dream in the Night

I awoke a little while ago here in the middle of the night from a mildly disquieting nightmare. In the dream, I was making some sort of financial transaction in an unidentified public setting when in filed a group of people I immediately identified as part of the local underworld (I don't know how I knew-- this realization was simply part of the dream). Near the end of the line of the people who walked into the room was a young ruffian gangster, maybe in his 20's, dressed very informally. He confronted me by bullying me in a haughty manner. He would not dissuade from staring me down and heckling me, but although I think I could have taken him, because of the wider implications of my role here, as well as my awareness of the other people present (and his wider well-connected network!) I chose simply to walk away from the conflict.

As I believe dreams are often related to unresolved issues we face during our waking hours that our mind seeks to process when the body is "offline", so to speak, I feel I can take a stab as to how this dream is connected to my daytime context (the connection may not be so obvious, but hey, I'm journaling in the middle of the night!):

This night I feel myself grieving... Grieving that certain directions in my/our work here can no longer/never be pursued. Grieving also that some certain relational lines can never be pursued. Being bullied by the environment? Maybe just will have to figuratively walk away from this battle, while sticking around for the longer war... The bottom line is that it feels somewhat unfair. God though never says that life is fair.

All this leaves me rejoicing in the word of the Lord:

For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
  neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
  so are my ways higher than your ways
  and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-10

耶和華說:“我的意念不是你們的意念,你們的道路也不是我的道路。 天怎樣高過地,我的道路也怎樣高過你們的道路,我的意念也怎樣高過你們的意念。