Dreamwork and Enlightenment

Before I record my latest dream sequence, I want to spend a few words on the subject of dreamwork as a path facet.

Western Non-Buddhist Resources for Awakening

A large part of my current practice has nothing to do with Buddhism, at least not directly. But neither is it a “separate axis of development” as Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha would argue. It is refining and stabilizing rigpa, after all, and it is taking town the boundary between the waking dream and nighttime dreams. I think western psychology has many tools to offer dharma practice as it is developing in the West for westerners. Buddhahood means all the boundaries have been dismantled, including the one that makes sleep and dreams beyond recall, awareness, and redirection.

I’m approaching my dream integration practice from two different angles: Jungian-Senoi and lucid dreaming literature. That topic deserves its own article, perhaps, when it has ripened in my mind, so let’s wait on it or else I’ll never get to recounting the remarkable dream I had this morning.

Jungian-Senoi Dreamwork Manual and Dream Incubation

I do want to highly recommend this quirky manual for one of the two approaches, however: The Jungian-Senoi Dreamwork Manual: A Step-by-Step Introduction to Working With Dreams:


I carry this big nutty manual nearly everywhere I go. I recommend it highly. One of my favorite techniques in this book is called dream incubation. It involves carefully formulating a specific question and then asking for a dream to come forth and answer the question. I’ve been stunned at how consistently well and quickly this method works. I incorporate my own touches, including meditation, prayer, ritual, tantra, and tarot.

I threw these cards right after the weekend retreat of March 27 and 28, which emphasized nonduality through work with the body. I was ecstatic after sitting with my teacher again after so many months. Something at this brief but sweet retreat happened–not a new shift, but a certainty that crystallized and sank down into me that the door on Ingram, MCTB2, all Buddhist forums, and high-maintenance people of all sorts, but especially former dharma friends, is now shut. 

Or, more properly, I’ve walked through this gate: http://jhanajenny.com/post/141579935947/gate-crucifixion-tarot

I’m precisely where I’m supposed to be, with the teacher  best for my development, and with the very few private dharma relationships that can fuel me rather than drain me energetically. My focus is wholesomely on simplifying my life, putting all the busy-ness I can aside, and nurturing my own life and practice. This is not the time to start a community, write a book, or chase after anything or anyone. Those impulses were my attempt to escape the reality of all that has passed and is passing.

Image of spread is here: http://jhanajenny.com/post/142258612762/enlightenment-arrogance-shapeshifter

Inner State: Nine of Swords

Ah, yes! The Nine of Swords follows the Eight of Swords, which is the gateless gate I mentioned, the one I felt I had passed through during this weekend.

The painting by Marie White is of the Temple of Eternity, so emptiness of time. It contains the four elements, a water veil, a sun above and beyond the invisible but functional line of the horizon, and a “this side” where we live. This card represents enlightenment, the highest state of a human being with intent. 

White’s painting shows the dark and light pillars in reversed positions, indicating that the other side of the view may be this side, here on earth, in time, in the relative. The air represents the pressure of challenge, and this leads us to evolution.

The card represents spiritual realization and the end of a long separation. It is the most appropriate card in the deck to represent my inner state after sitting this retreat.

Outer World: King of Wands Reversed

This card has come up often during the whole legal dispute. This time is it in the position of outer world, other person. In reverse it is a card of righteous indignation, arrogance, and inability to embody the power behind those energies skillfully. 

Advice: Queen of Wands

This card is of me in my current situation. It is a full-bodied feminine power. It is a nagual, a shapeshifter, a shaman, a witch. A complement to the King of Wands, the sun god, which marks my outer world, she is the dark, the inner, the flame in the temple of my own body. She is the dark forest and the dark night I must traverse alone. She wears a shard of obsidian near her third eye. It is both a weapon and a mirror. It is myself that she is showing me. This is a card advising me to re-create myself though the imagination and embodied power.