Like stars in a dark sky, dreams are a faint sparkle in the depths of the night.
She woke up early. The light filtered in zebra-like through the blinds ever so lightly trying to nudge her into the day, but the darkness still dark enough to fool her into another 5 minutes of rest. She stretched out a leg, toes pointing, a foot arched to the ceiling. Then an arm, fingers reached into oblivion. She felt as though a dream casting a shadow into reality.
She went through her day in a similar hazy way, memories surfacing to her mind like pockets of air, bubbling up from the ocean floor. She was unsure if the images came from her waking life or some place in her subconscious. Was it her imagination making it all up? She tried to differentiate dreams from reality, but at times, it was too much trouble. So she sat in reflection, letting the thoughts arise and subside, creating a loose semblance of histories.
In her early days she experimented with mind-altering substances. She ate acid in the woods, smoked dmt in the mountains, popped back peyote buttons in the desert. She explored consciousness heavily and without reserve. But when it came down to it, she found a friend in magic mushrooms and ganja. There was something about their interaction that worked well with her chemistry and essence.
She began meditating with the fungi and grass, and practicing yoga by her lonesome, always by her lonesome. For the longest time, she was scared of community. She didn’t want to reveal herself. She wasn’t ready. She felt like an injured bird, and being with people hurt too much. She was afraid of hurting others as well. But her time alone had its advantages. Through her self-reflection, she discovered, locked away like a snake coiled at the base of the spine, an innate power waiting to be cultivated and put to use.
She had heard of the snake called kundalini before, but was unsure how to maneuver, or handle, such a life force. Through continuous practice and inquiry, she slowly gained a wield over the wilderness within, the hidden, dense, and compacted layers, once accessed and opened, they burst forth like so many deathless feathers.
She felt often like she was floating. This was a new feeling for her, so she was wary at first. But day in and day out, the feeling of weightlessness stuck with her. Upon waking, she breathed it in and maintained the buoyancy throughout the day. She felt reconnected to the source, experiencing her inner world as a womb of nourishment and safety.
There was a single moment that pushed her from the embankments of study & solitude, a moment of such overwhelming joy and intensity, it made her sad there was no one around to share it. It was a simple thing. She saw a flower. She became the flower. She identified with the petals. She knew the blossoming and the falling and the crumpling and the drying out on the ground. For her, it was tears. Tears of sadness. Tears of joy. So she left the labyrinths of her inner being and began relearning to live amongst people.
It took time to adjust to the alien, and sometimes harsh, world of others. She tailored her behavior and speech to be, if not a little unusual and out of the ordinary, at the very least pleasant to the ear and easy on the heart. She wanted to share her insights and teachings not only from her psychotropic experiences, but from her dreams as well. She understood such lessons had to be masked and softened. If she spoke without metaphor, people would write her off as a madwoman. She knew she had to present her intricacy of thinking, not literally, but like a tide slowly rising along the shoreline: with so much natural ease, that before one knows it, their feet are wet with foam and waves are lapping at the knees.
She decided it was worthwhile to sit with the ocean to learn further her secrets. She listened to the crashing rhythm unrelenting and strong. She watched as the moon drifted across the horizon and reflected softly in the dark waters. She picked up a stick and started etching symbols in the sand, and like a drop of rain falling on her forehead, a vision presented itself.
From that point forward, she went about her days with a brush as a wand, painting trees in the clouds floating on seas devouring the sun. She conjured landscapes from those worlds she saw when she mirrored her third eye outward. The texture of her paintings evoked deep-rooted feelings and her choice of colors altered people’s moods. She believed wholeheartedly in the fruits of the shadow, of diving into the unknown and retrieving those sparkling treasures from the grips of fear; and the only way she saw fit to describe them was through images and wordless symbols. She tread in that space so often, it felt like home.
This is how she learned to heal herself. She lost herself so thoroughly in her work, she painted herself in dreams.