2017

Christmas gift exchange (part of an ongoing dream series)

In one of my ongoing dream series I’m a young man who works at a restaurant at night. Two nights ago I was working there when a female co-worker told me she bought a Christmas gift for me, and wanted to see if we could do a gift exchange. I hadn’t gotten her anything yet, so I said something like, “I, I ... I can’t do it right now because <insert excuse here>. How about tomorrow?”

After work I went out to buy something for her. “Think, think,” I said to myself, probing my dream memory, “what would be a nice gift?” Then I remembered that a few weeks ago she told me about something she always wanted when she was younger, so I went out and found that item, and wrapped it up.

Last night we exchanged gifts during a break at work. She opened hers first, and when she saw it she began to cry. “Uh-oh,” I thought, “now you’ve gone and made her cry. This might not be good.” But then she said it was beautiful and thoughtful, and said her gift to me was nothing compared to it.

Tonight I think I’m going to call in sick to work, or maybe just stay up all night and binge-watch Stranger Things.

~ December 13, 2017

A tub of applesauce exploded alvin December 7, 2019 - 1:42pm

A tub of applesauce exploded when I returned to higher altitude (driving back to Colorado from Kentucky). I’m always surprised when that doesn’t happen to my brain.

~ December 7, 2017

Make a game of active mindfulness meditation

The best advice I’ve gotten for practicing mindfulness meditation while not sitting in meditation – i.e., in active meditation – is to make something of a game of it. When I wash the dishes it’s like, “How deep can I get while I wash these dishes?” Or when talking to another person, you both put down the cellphones and think, “Okay, we’re both here right now, how much can we focus only on each other and be here in this moment while we talk? How deep can we go?”

I was reminded of this when I read this line recently: “Finally, I got it! The menial tasks I had been assigned to around the temple were meant to be an exercise in meditation. Whatever I was doing, my job was to try to stay in samadhi.”

(That quote comes from the book, The Science of Meditation.)

Perform the work that has to be done without attachment

I like most of Dana Stabenow’s work, and while I didn’t particularly like Dead in the Water, I did enjoy some of the quotes in the book, such as, “Always perform the work that has to be done without attachment,” which comes from the Bhagavad Gita, of which there are many translations (such as this one, this one, and this one).

Traveling to an old cathedral for training (a lucid dream)

Dream notes from June 27, 2017: As I feel asleep I was ripped out of my sleep body by some sort of lucid dream tractor beam, then pulled backwards through space. Eventually I came to um ... “somewhere” ... and when I turned my head to see where I was, I found I was being pulled towards a very large, old cathedral. The tractor beam continued to pull me butt-first, right through the closed front doors of the cathedral. Why open a door when you can go through it?

Inside, the tractor beam dropped me off at a spot near some stairs. Somehow I knew what I was supposed to do — this wasn’t punishment, it was a good thing — and I went with a group of other people up the stairs. I saw a few familiar faces and either said “Hey, how have you been?” to them, or nodded to acknowledge others who were farther away.

Walking up the stairs, a woman started talking to me. Most of it was in English, and then some words were in another language. I tried to tell her that the Universal Translator apparently wasn’t translating what she was saying, but to no avail. I remember that two words she said were, “sonó toma,” which Google translates in Spanish as “sleep takes.”

We all filed into a room where I saw a few more familiar faces. We sat in chairs like we were in college again, or more like we were attending a seminar. I thought that was funny, “A seminar for sleep travelers.” I hoped the speaker would be good. Or maybe it would be a series of TED talks for lucid dreamers. Those thoughts made me wonder who organized the event.

I won’t share the rest of what happened, but hopefully I’ll see you at the cathedral one day. :)

“In a world full of people, only some want to fly, isn’t that crazy?” ~ Seal