Lights On - Doors Open

I have been quiet as of late because so much was going on within me that I found it difficult to put words to the tumult within. These past several weeks have been filled with reflection, journaling, dreams, meditation, prayers, revelation and despair. And then suddenly as if the fog lifted, there is clarity.

I have been picking at a particular scab for months. Digging deeply into the shadowy realms of my unconscious searching … searching for an answer to an age-old question – Why *do* I shrink from the light?

When I started, I did not even know what the question was much less having an answer. All I knew was that something felt off, out of balance. As I reached new levels of physical health, my incrementally increasing serenity revealed a fundamental imbalance within.

The weekly readings of Thich Nhat Hanh helped tremendously. By returning to the text day after day, the revealed discomfort became more and more palpable. Until it could be denied no further and I was forced to face a well of pain, fear and rage.

I was not surprised to find these emotions, what surprised me was that I was not able to discern their source. Normally I can attach the emotions readily to either something occurring in my day to day life and/or a resurfacing memory of an incident from my past being triggered by something in the present day.

But this time, I was at a complete loss. So I prayed, meditated, recited mantras and allowed myself to wander in the darkness longer than I am accustomed. And wander is a good description for the meandering path I followed—the serpentine path of the snake.

And sitting in a recent Touch Drawing class, I felt the serpent rising slowly, gradually – she was taking her own sweet time. An image from that class became a calming practice as I drew it again and again in my sketchpad. Spirals on spirals revealing the shape of a woman wandering on a path strewn with eyes.

At some point, it dawned on me that I was in a completely opposite mode from last fall. I had far too little to occupy my time – and this was very upsetting to me. I fought the decline of busyness, throwing up fears and rationalizations one on top of another – till even I knew it was a lie. Even my intuitive healer noted a strand of terror laying in wait just below the surface of my skin.

What I feared was a revelation surfacing from deep within. Dream after dream revealed a deep, dark discomfort, a disquieting revelation just at the edge, peering maliciously into my intimate quarters. In dream after dream, I pushed away this malingerer, closing the doors against him time after time. Finally I said out loud, “What are my dreams trying to tell me?”

And then it happened.

I awakened to find all the lights on and all the doors open wide. I jumped up startled, it was dark out and here was my house lit up and open. I ran to the front door turning off lights quickly as I shut then bolted the door. Outside I could see dark shadowy figures walking along on the sidewalk.

Across the street was a firehouse, a part of my mind stirred but I ignored it. But seeing the firehouse reassured me a little. But I was still in the state of sheer panic. I ran toward the back the house turning off lights as I went.

Reaching the back door, again my mind stirred. I was in the kitchen trying to force the back door closed. But it was stuck, the door was hanging just a little off its hinges. So as I lifted and pushed to finally close the door, it finally dawns on me – this is not my house! This is the house of my childhood!

But the panic refused to subside, even though I now … finally ... realized it was all a dream. I raced back toward the front to find two small lights still on, and even these I shut off. Till finally …I felt safe and secure … back in the dark.

And it hit me – visible and accessible => panic and sheer terror.


Then I woke up.

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