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    Recent Entries

    Eight Ways of Dying

    by LeaningKarst on 04-15-2018 at 09:14 PM
    I am going on a trip with some other people—vague impressions of preparation, of using a computer in a lab to take care of some paperwork I need for it—some kind of registration, maybe.

    It seems to be a long trip. We are traveling by car, and after a while, we stop at a gas station. I go inside to find something to eat and am pleasantly surprised to discover they have marzipan here. I pick out a couple small bars of it, along with some other food for the road.

    A little while later, I’m in a room belonging to my friend Nina—it seems to be in the same building, with the gas station just on the other side of a door. I’m examining some small statues on the shelves. The statues illustrate the “eight ways of dying”—which actually seems to signify ways of living, the idea being that they’re lifestyles that don’t really deserve to be called living.

    There are two complete sets of the eight, and they both go about illustrating them in different ways. I looked at all of the statues, but the only one I remember vividly was the eighth one of the second set, which I was looking at as I woke up. The key symbol seems to be a snail, representing an unthinking, animal-like life. But while the sculptor of the first set has just portrayed the snail, the sculptor of the second—who seems to have a more fanciful take on things in general—has portrayed the snail crawling over a human corpse in a colorful stage of decomposition. Where’s Nina so I can ask her about these, I wonder.

    I can also vaguely remember a couple other statues, also from the second set. The second statue showed a woman lying on a massage table surrounded by jars and bottles and things, and the fourth didn’t seem to have any living figures at all, but looked like a mineralogist’s work table might—rocks of various kinds scattered over it and a jar of rocks in the center.

    15.4.18

    (Note: I think the Buddhist ideas here are pretty clear, but it may be less obvious that it’s also drawing pretty heavily from Plato.)
    Categories
    non-lucid

    The Gifts You've Been Given

    by LeaningKarst on 04-13-2018 at 12:55 AM
    I’m an observer watching a scene unfold on a boat—but really, it’s more that I’m looking at it and the people on deck while being aware of the situation playing out there in a more abstract way. There are some documents I need for traveling on this boat, and I’m not sure if I have them or if I need to go through some process to get them.

    The scene shifts—I’m now exiting a bus. But instead of winding up outside as I had expected, I’ve simply stepped onto another bus. I quickly take a seat behind the two women who entered ahead of me and wonder where this one is going to take me.

    The scene shifts again—this time, I’m waking up in the back of a car my parents are driving. It feels as if I’m younger in this one. We’ve just stopped by a building I recognize as the one where my father’s workshop is. That means we’re not far from home now. I fall back asleep.

    The scene shifts yet again—this time, I’m in a grocery store. And this time, I know it’s a dream, although I still seem to think the last bit with the car was waking reality. I think it would be best if I sleep for the remainder of the trip, and so that means making sure this dream lasts.

    I look around. There don’t seem to be anyone here but me. It's reminiscent of the specialty grocer’s down the street from my old flat on Svornosti. That means there should be a counter over in the corner where I can get some coffee.

    I go over and find the counter is there, and that there’s somebody behind it. There’s nothing displaying prices, so I just put down three bills, possibly dollars, which seems like a more than fair price. But the woman tells me I have to make the coffee myself using the machine there. It’s an odd contraption, like no coffee maker I’ve ever used, but after messing around for it a bit, I get it to pour some coffee out - Turkish style, with the grounds at the bottom. I drink it. This isn’t a conscious attempt at stabilization, I don’t think—just something that struck me as a pretty good idea—but it may have had that effect, as it’s normally hard for me to stay asleep so late in the morning.

    I consider where to go from here. Perhaps home, where the car was headed—only I have no idea where I am right now. But if I fly, perhaps I’ll see some familiar landmark from the air and be able to find my way from there. And to fly, I’ll need a high place to launch from—so it looks like I’m headed to the roof.

    In the meantime, I’ve noticed six or seven wolves between two shelves on the upper story, which is a sort of balcony over one half of the store. They all trot off in a single direction as I watch. Are they coming after me? But I wasn’t planning on sticking around here in any case. I climb a shelf and phase through the ceiling.

    I now find myself in a room lit by a warm light. A long mahogany table laid with bright red dishes is some distance off—set for an elaborate meal, it looks like. It's quite pretty. I continue on my way, climbing another shelf and jumping through the ceiling.

    This time I’m in an attic-like room near a big calico cat that, in typical feline fashion, seems entirely unimpressed by my unusual method of transportation. But it’s about then that I wake up.

    I also wake up remembering something else—not something I heard, but words that seemed to be impressed on my mind. It went something like: “Use the gifts you’ve been given, human.” I don’t know who said it—perhaps it was the cat?—but it seemed somehow independent from the rest of the dream, like it was taking place on a different level. Good advice, in any case.

    12.4.18 - (Happy Lucid Dreaming Day, everyone!)
    Categories
    lucid , non-lucid , dream fragment

    Been Here A Lot Lately

    by LeaningKarst on 04-12-2018 at 02:42 AM
    I find myself walking down the staircase to the basement of my M--- house. It occurs to me that this is a place I only visit in dreams—and so I must be dreaming right now.

    The room is dark, so I try to brighten it up a little bit by clapping as if the lighting there was the kind that responded to that. But that doesn’t seem to help, and the visuals, though still vivid, have an indefinite quality to them that tells me the dream isn’t very stable. I decide I’ll cut the visuals off altogether to stabilize it through other senses, but wake up first—right around the time I ordinarily wake up, which explains the instability. I seem to have completely lost the ability to sleep in nowadays.

    10.4.18
    Categories
    lucid , dream fragment

    Carved in Stone

    by LeaningKarst on 04-08-2018 at 06:04 PM
    This dream took place in a city than my brain identified as Dubrovnik. And it wasn’t entirely unlike Dubrovnik—it was by the sea, and in the right sort of general landscape, only hillier, and it did have a similar aesthetic. This wasn’t the first time I had a dream set there, although I don’t think I identified it as anywhere familiar that time.

    In this dream, the city seems to be gearing up for a festival, with some tents and stalls already up, some still being set up. The city is full of people, which strikes me as an unusual circumstance, as if I’ve been living here rather than a visitor like them. As I hear people talking among the crowd about the best route to a certain location, I know the answer. But right now, they’re heading in the right direction anyway—at least, if they want to see the preparations along the way, which is what I want to do.

    Across a canal or some kind of long, rectangular pond, there are yet more people near a fountain, including someone I know—an old classmate of mine, an Italian exchange student. She and an unfamiliar man are embracing there. In front of me, some other people I recognize as classmates have also noticed, and they don’t like what they see. One young woman in red makes a disparaging comment rather loudly, clearly intending to be heard by them. I don’t know what the story is here, but I find it hard to believe that it could possibly be any of their business.

    I run into her again later on, as part of a group of performers, doing some kind of open-air act—oddly, it’s as if they’re all hovering above the water of a canal like the other one, only wider. I wave to them as I pass, and they wave back, but nobody else is even acknowledging them. I have the impression that they’re afraid to for some reason.

    At some point, I’m further up, out of the city proper. I pause to look down a broad stone staircase—really, more of a terraced sidewalk—that winds its way down to the sea. The sea is shining and calm, pale blue and pink, as if the sun only rose a short time ago.

    And further still, there's some kind of special site. I climb on a big rock to get a better look at it. The whole area is blocked off with a sheet of glass and has a rather stage-y appearance, as if it were intended to be seen from this angle. To the right is the entrance of a cave, where cacti and other scrubby plants are growing. To the left are four reclining chairs in a row—I assume that means this place will be open to the public at some point, since I can’t imagine why they would be there otherwise.

    The ground they’re located on breaks off with a sheer cliff face which I’m directly facing, and I can see something interesting there: some kind of symbol carved in the pale stone. It's a small circle with two lines inside it, which are arranged like the hands of a clock when it’s 10 o’clock, and coming off the bottom is a long, wavy line ending with a wedge, like an arrow. It strikes me as vaguely alchemical. I wonder what it signifies—it definitely seems to suggest some kind of downward motion.

    Some other people have gathered here while I’ve been looking—I recognize someone else I know. The last time I spoke to him was very awkward, but he doesn’t mention that, which I’m glad of. He’s telling me about the cave. But unfortunately, I can’t remember much of what he says—only that something important took place here a couple millennia ago.

    8.4.18
    Categories
    non-lucid

    Ghosts Took My Car Keys

    by LeaningKarst on 04-03-2018 at 09:25 PM
    I’m in a car with my mother, driving down an unfamiliar road towards the house where she's living—it seems that I’ve come here to visit her and will be leaving soon. We aren’t far from the house, but she indicates that I should turn off to the right, where there’s a cemetery. I already have some idea what this is about since I know there’s a grave here that she’s been taking care of. We’ve already visited a couple times during the course of this visit. I turn into the entrance.

    Now we’re both walking through the cemetery. It’s a bit overgrown, but a livelier place than you might expect since there are kids running around doing kid things and other people who are here visiting.

    Some of the children are decorating the grave we’re headed for. They’re debating over where to put a special artifact—it looks like a small spiral seashell, only brown and lightweight like a cicada skin. Right now, they have it set on the leaf of a flowering plant, but it seems to be bending the leaf back too far.* (At some point, I couldn’t say exactly when, I seem to have become a different person—a friend of my mother’s, a man, maybe in his 40s or older.)

    Eventually, somebody gets the idea of calling up the spirits themselves and asking them how they want the grave to look. Now there are a number of them floating around, including one that is just a disembodied hand. They ask it to point to what it wants on the grave—but, unexpectedly, it goes straight for my car keys. Really? But I know I have to give them up now.

    But I also know—not from the man’s perspective, but from somewhere outside it—that they are laying claim to the keys because they like him, they think he’s a great guy, and by doing this, they can prevent something bad from happening to him that they know is in his future otherwise. The fact that he is massively inconvenienced in the process is completely incidental.

    *Note: I had spent a few hours of the previous day on website design, a lot of which is figuring out how to get thing A to location B without messing anything else up. An interesting parallel here.

    2.4.18
    Categories
    non-lucid