What Have You Done?

I think all people dream.  I have read many explanations for dreams, but the most consistent and logical to me is that it is the brain’s clean-up crew processing, storing and  discarding data that you stored in a “temporary drive” during your waking hours.   Dreams may seem illogical or totally surreal, but that’s because your brain is dealing with what we call reality in a different way.  Sometimes, I think, our dreams are also a window into something else.  What that something else is may be different to each individual, or it may be a Jungian collective consciousness.

Recurring dreams are probably not the result of the brain’s clean-up crew, but something at the core of your mind, soul, or both.  I think they are a communication either from your deepest “self”, or from the vast, unseen force many of us call God.  I have had, or at least remember, three recurring dreams in my life.  In the first, which occurred over a period of several years starting in my late twenties, I was standing on a walkway, porch or deck of rough-hewn wood, looking out over a heavily wooded fjord or lake.  Behind me I sensed a cabin or similar structure.  While I could not see it, I knew it was there, and the lights from its windows illuminated the area I was standing in.  The weather was crisp, and the location was obviously far north of the Florida in which I lived at the time. The only sounds were the wind in the evergreens, a distant Whippoorwill,  and a sound from the cabin behind me of someone washing dishes.  There was no interaction with another person, and while there was a sense of time,  neither the scenery nor any other thing actually changed.  As I recall, I experienced this dream on a fairly regular basis over a period of two or three years.  After each night that the dream occurred, I would search my memory for any subtle changes or any clues to the meaning of the dream.  The only conclusion that I ever seriously entertained was that, at that time in my life, I was looking for peace and tranquility and could find it nowhere.

The second recurring dream was not only much simpler, but occurred in a much shorter time-span.  For a period of two or three weeks during my early forties, I had this dream almost every night.  A face would appear before me.  There was no background, at least that I can remember, just the face of a Black man who I would describe as a Rastafarian by his long dreadlocks and clothing.  While the man projected this singular appearance, there was no mistaking in my mind that the person in front of me was actually Christ.  He slowly and articulately spoke one sentence while looking directly into my eyes: “If you cannot love him, you cannot love me”.  Unlike what I have labeled my “cabin dream”, I really didn’t need to ponder the meaning of this one.  For whatever the actual meaning of the cabin dream, this one was obviously tailored for my simple mind.  I did find it curious that at the time, I was not having any difficulty with any work relationships or any other relationships with any African-Americans.

The third, and last recurring dream has been more infrequent, but has been over a much greater timespan.  For several years now, I have been confronted in my sleep with a short, compact man of what I would call Middle-Eastern heritage.  Somewhat weather-beaten, with curling black hair and a rough, untrimmed beard, he looks directly at me, just as the Rasta-man did, and says “What have you done?”  This is not delivered in an accusatory tone, as if I have just wrecked my car, but as an inquiry.  There is no mistaking, in my mind, that the personage of this third recurring dream is the same as in the second.  What have I done?

I need to think much harder about that question.

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