Okay, back here at the Iris of Time looking for images again. Night after night, the same scavenger hunt. Later tonight, and I’m more tired than usual. That might get me closer to the sleep state, which could produce images, or I could just drop off to sleep. I now have both an air purifier and a humidifier in my bedroom, and with the door closed, that provides a good level of background noise to keep out sounds from the outside world.
I open the Iris:
Some squiggly light in the lower left corner, which rapidly disappears. A small white dot of light just to the right of center. Now squiggles of light all over the field of view, the Iris. No images yet. The little light again. I must sensitize myself to prepare for the Unconscious. It’s a matter of sensitivity. That’s really an interesting question. If none of the five senses are involved in Active Imagination, how does the world of the Unconscious manifest itself? Are our real world senses only duplicates, metaphors in the words of Plato, of some attribute of ourselves as we exist in our own minds?
I’m seeing someone, have been seeing someone, and listening to him talk for a while now and didn’t realize it. He’s a black man, rather elderly. I can’t remember what he was talking about. A man standing just to my right, startling physical presence. A hobo, I believe. He’s still there, but now I can’t see him. I may be at a fair or carnival. We’re in a park at a fair grounds talking. I really don’t like that hobo. “That guy will kill them,” I hear someone say. More men, this time drunks. A clown. I’ve just been listening to someone, a man, sing and didn’t realize it. Not sure of the song. I was just arguing with a doctor about how to do Active Imagination. He was trying to give me some bad advice. A tub full of liquid, milk I believe. I put my hand in it and pull some skim out with my hand. A dancing man, clapping to music that I can’t hear.
I’m just simply too tired to do this. I close the Iris. Drift off to sleep.
Toward morning I wake again, try Active Imagination again. The residual light from my notebook screen after I turn it off makes a pale white square in the Iris of Time as I open it. The light begins to fade, and I see the white squiggles like in a blank television screen without a signal. Nothing to break the uniformity. I catch a glimpse of a star stairway into the dark before me. I concentrate on it, then start walking into it. I hear water dripping. Perhaps I’m in a cavern. Another loud drop echoes. I’m afraid to go any further. I have no way forward, and I see no light. I could follow the steps but they could end at a cliff. I feel a cold wet draft. I wait for something to happen. Surely I’ve been shown this stairway for a reason, by someone. It’s cold in here. (Some times I can have ten minutes between typed sentences.) Flashes of light in the upper left. I see rough rock at the top of the cavern, black rock. I wonder if the Centaur brought me here? I’ve not seen the Unicorn lately. This isn’t the same cavern I was in before. Now I see a little of the cavern up ahead. It’s partially lit. I walk on a few steps but the light fades, and I’m not that sure of myself. I see the little light. Doesn’t seem to be connected to the cavern. It’s not lighting the way.
Must have faith in the process. I’m always afraid it won’t work. That I can’t go forward. Faith in the process is critical in the narrative moving forward. Another light at the end of the tunnel, and I move forward.
The little light is guiding me. Now the end of the tunnel seems farther away. I’ve lost ground. I sense something else for me to learn lies up ahead, perhaps someone to show it to me. I keep losing my way forward, losing the narrative. I see a blue eye, or is that a gem? In my thoughts, I trace again my path up the stairs, try to rekindle the waking dream, find my way forward in it.
I’m lost. No way forward. I sit down on a step, refusing to give up. “Help me here, someone. I need help.” I keep getting glimpses of the tunnel up ahead, so I make a decision. I’ll trust that someone has brought me here , and even though I’ve lost my way, I should go on because faith in the process, faith that someone has my best interest at heart and is leading me forward. I get no indication of animosity.
I get up off the wet step and go on up. To the right, I feel a cold damp rock wall. I follow the cold steps forward and up, one at a time. Now I see the way forward, and it’s a long uphill trek through a tunnel, poorly lit but manageable. It seems to go on forever. I hear a faint strong male voice, echoes. Can’t make out words. I’ve come to the end. I feel a hard rock surface. The end of the tunnel. But steps leading to a dead end? Is this the end of the road? This is like one of the Myst games. I feel around on the ground and find a pick and shovel. Why would I have to dig my way through this? Perhaps it’s a way of telling me that no one has ever gone this far before. I go to work in the dark with the pick. The rock is soft and crumbly. I chip away at it. Small pieces break off at first, and then large chunks. After a bit, I take the shovel and push the loose rock off the trail. I hear them fall into the gorge to the left. I continue to work my way forward, a bit a time. I rest. Go at it again. Perhaps this is just a cave-in that covers the stairs, and if I break my way through, the path will continue on.
Nothing makes sense. I have no guide through my imagination. At this point I can imagine anything, and then I will be making up the story. I see no images to carry me forward. I hear no voices. I have no companion to advise me. I’m lost in my own fantasy. My imagination has abandoned me.
I pull back out of this imagined narrative. I see lights at the left edge of the Iris. My ears clear. I make my way back down the stairs, exit the cavern. Not all places inside the Unconscious lead somewhere. Not every road leads somewhere. But this path was a stairs. Why was it abandoned? Or was it a cave-in? I don’t really sense a strong purpose for pursuing this. If it comes to me again, I’ll try to break though again. But tonight, I’m lost.
I close the Iris of Time. Fall asleep.
During the rest of the night, I had the following three dreams.
The first was about two young men. I knew both of them. They didn’t know each other. We were all in a room doing something when the two of them ran into each other while working. One of them was known as a good fighter. The other was athletic but not tested at fighting. As soon as they came together, they got into it and started fighting. I was hoping the new guy, the guy new to fighting would take the more experienced fighter, but immediately the inexperienced guy, got hurt, and they stopped for a minute. Then they were at it again, but the inexperienced guy started bleeding about the nose and mouth, so they stopped. The dream ended.
In the second dream, I was at work at an engineering company. I had helped someone get transferred to another area, get a new job within the company. I was about to lose my job also, and went to my section chief to see if he could find a new job for me. We talked a bit about the possibility. I had been looking myself but hadn’t come up with any thing. He was agreeable with me, but then he said that he’d heard that I had got a job for that other person. He said that I’d gone about it behind his back. And now I come to him looking for a job. I hadn’t followed protocol. I told him that I was sincerely sorry, that somehow I hadn’t realize I shouldn’t do that. I told him that I wasn’t doing very well, that I had these lapses in judgment. Then the dream ended.
In the third dream, I was with a woman in a car going somewhere. We were in traffic that was stopped. I worked my way into the crowd of cars, found a good spot and stopped. The woman had directed me. I believe she was my wife, but she wasn’t someone I now recognize. Then I realized that we were at the front of a procession. We were on a guided tour. I had crowded my way up to the front next to the lead car. No one seemed to mind, but I felt uneasy about what I had done. Then the man who was leading the procession came to us and said that we had to make sure we had everything tied down so nothing would blow out. Our car was a convertible, and we had all sorts of stuff that had to be tied down. This was a sightseeing tour through some sort of park or other natural wonder. I was doing everything wrong again. Then the dream ended.
The best I can make of these last two dreams is that they could be related to the failed Active Imagination session. Perhaps, they were telling me that I should always have someone directing my activities in the Unconscious. I shouldn’t be going off on my own, and I should be prepared. Perhaps the first dream was telling me that I could get hurt if I don’t know what I’m doing, to not take chances in the Unconscious. This could be the reason I ended up at a dead end in the Active Imagination session.