Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door

On March 8th I had a vivid dream, which together with the events of the day have left me quite unsettled – enough so that I couldn’t write about it until now.

The dream:

I was at a party in the covered outdoor patio of a white house. Vine plants clung to trellises, yet they seemed withered/near dead, so I guessed that I was in a warmer climate but it was still either mid-winter or early spring.

Then a man steps into view and I’m blown away enough not to care about what kind of plants are growing. It was Tim Duncan, followed by Kobe Bryant – my two favorite NBA heroes. There was another NBA player more in the background behind them, mingling in the distance of the party. All I could see about this player was that he was white and I had never ever seen or heard of him before – but he looked tall as hell so I was sure he was NBA material.

A party where NBA players are mingling with everyone? Tim and Kobe say they are going to another party after this and ask if I’d like to come. “Of course!”

The scene changes. I’m in a desert now, with a large cliff-face north of me and open expanse of nothing save the bright sun south of me. It is late afternoon, because a large shadow is being cast by the western-most side of this cliff-face. Tim, Kobe and the tall white guy lead me and a group of 30 or so people inside a structure.

A door opens up into the mountain and inside is a huge warehouse. We are all so star-struck that we hardly notice our surroundings. I was noticing, though, and this made my hosts more and more agitated. The big white NBA player suddenly pulls out a gun and starts shooting in my direction. I run for the door, feeling in my pockets for a weapon.

A handgun is there, but I can’t run, find it, and shoot at the same time. (very important dillemma).

I manage to clear the front doors without getting hit, and see a car parked about 100 yards away. “Cover. Just give me cover and I can arm myself enough to fight back.” Running, scrambling, scratching for another yard, another foot, another inch. The bullets have seared my flesh and a thud hits the ground 20 yards from my target. It is over. Everyone leaves. Was I brought here under false pretenses? I’m very confused.

I look down and my body is below me. I am “standing” at its head, for how long I have no idea, and feel very confused. Why am I laying down? I can’t be dead. I am dreaming, but I feel like a spirit now. I can see my body below me. What is going on?

Then from a far distance, a man approaches on foot. He ignores my body and looks “me” in the eye:

“You are dead now,” he says, his voice resonant, wise, gentle. “Trust the inner journey. Let your soul fly.”

At that moment, my soul is completely released from the earth and I soar beyond the atmosphere into space, then back again, making white arch-like trails behind me. Finally I dip above the atmosphere to space again, never to return, and I wake up.

Real life:

It is time for a day of community gathering, here at Sunrise Ranch we have 4 a year. I arrive a moment too late, walking into a ceremonial environment. A chant is being sung and people are approaching the area where the singers are one at a time in a gesture that seems to represent “Opening to their sovereign within.”

After the first half, at the start of mid-morning break, we get word that our friend and neighbor who was not in attendance, Jack Caputo, had a heart attack and was being rushed to the hospital. By the end of the 20minute break word came back that he was gone, passed away in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. This symbol of dying on the way to refuge, unable to run, get what’s needed and fight back, I believe, was my way of “being” with Jack in his departure from earth.

Jack Caputo was a great friend and mentor to me. He was my doctor and he was an elder both in this community and in the mankind project.

My heart sings to Jack from the depths of dream time, the kind that persists into waking moments: “Trust the inner journey. Let your soul fly.”

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