The Age of Understanding

I had a dream this morning that I realized was the culmination of about 10 years of work. 8 years of that work I did in my early 30s and then two years of work this last two years. It had to do with the dance of the anima and the animus.

It was a violent dream and a scary dream. I woke up quite shocked and it took me a whole day to understand it. I knew it was an important dream. And I have a friend who I know can see things at that level. So I left them messages and I talked it through until it made sense (treasure such friends – they are rare gems at the bottom of deep oceans – they didn’t even need to comment – they were asleep as I left the messages but by talking to them I was naked in the mirror – no need for filters).

When Marie-Louise von Franz met Carl Jung as a teenager he told her he had a patient, a woman, and she lived on the moon. She actually believed she lived on the moon.

When Marie-Louise heard this she recognized instantly human beings have two lives. Their inner life and the life in the world.

All meaning is derived in the inner life. All things that happen on the outside come from the inner life. She knew instantly what she would dedicate her life to and spent her whole life studying psychology and fairy tales.

I had a similar experience when I met my teacher when I was 19. He said: “I am determined to see differently.” Then he paused for a long time and said “Determination, determination, determination.” All very deliberately and slowly. And then he followed it with the line (to a room full of people).”Not one of you in this room know the meaning behind that word.” I knew instantly that was a state I wanted to make contact with.

This dream I had this morning was utterly horrific. A man was chasing me and a woman into an elevator and he was out to kill and he got crushed in the elevator doors. It was very frightening. But at the end of the day I had understood it and it involved an understanding of the anima and the animus and morphogenetic fields and all kinds of strange things. When I had come to understand it though, it was the most profound thing. I cannot tell you how beautiful a feeling it was.

To understand that the death of that man in my dream was the death of something in my life that prevented ascension to deeper realms. It was a very joyous moment and it had nothing to do with anything in my conscious mind. It had nothing to do with an activity that I could blame anyone for, myself included. But the death of that energy was a glorious moment.

I have studied dreams for years and they are always always about you. I saw John Lennon talking in an interview the other night and he said even with his song “How do you sleep,” in time he realized that too was about him.

In 1940, Florence Scovel Shinn wrote that Solomon says in the Bible: “Above all else seek understanding.”

And Florence says (paraphrasing) in the same passage:

“We live in the age of understanding. We have left behind the world of the dim faith of peasants.”

I have heard many terms for the age. Industrial Age. Digital age. But they are just modes of technology. Without understanding you float on a freshwater sea hunted by thirst. That is the most empowered epithet for the age.

When you have the right understanding of the inner world deep thirsts are quenched. Profound shifts happen.

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