Learning to swim

“The mystic and the schizophrenic
find themselves in the same ocean,
but whereas the mystic swims,
the schizophrenic drowns.”  –
R.D.Laing

Doña Ramona, a Seri shaman from Punta Chueca, ...

Doña Ramona, a Seri shaman from Punta Chueca, Sonora, Mexico.

“Now I’m aware that I alone am in the vast
openness
of the sea
And cause the sea to be the sea

Just swim.
Just swim.
Go on with your story.

Dainin Katagiri Roshi – from” “Long Quiet Highway – Waking up in America” by Natalie Goldberg

So, to go on with my story……

I have always been afraid of being in water.  And, I have always known my grandmother’s house – the one house that has been there my entire life.  One night recently I dreamed that I was in my grandmothers house.  The entire house was filled with water.  There was nowhere to go but through it.

In my dream, I felt myself relax, and for the first time in my life, waking or otherwise, I enjoyed being in the water.  I woke up with a smile on my face and then cried because I wished I could walk to the ocean, right then, and jump in.

Water is a symbol of humanity’s unconscious, and of our emotional worlds, and other things.  I have been allowing so much of my deeper self to “float up” lately that it’s not really a surprise that I had this dream.  The surprise for me was the complete 180 degree turnaround my CONSCIOUS self experienced afterward.  I wanted to be in the ocean, in the rivers, the lakes.  I wanted to feel the caress that only water can give.  I wanted to swim literally and figuratively, mythologically and concretely. The fear was gone.

I have always had a burning desire to delve into the uncommon.  To root around in the dark mass, just below the surface of waking life.  To find my origin and destination.  To try to communicate back to others what I find.  This is no small task.  Turns out, there are  many others attempting the same thing through whatever means they find necessary.  I feel blessed to know some of you personally, and am thrilled by the thoughts of meeting others out there.

As a matter of fact, that thought, that there are many of us “shaman-in-training”, learning to swim through our own personal oceans, that has been almost constantly in my mind lately.  I am quieted inside when I realize that these people are my tribe.  I am quieted when I realize that so many of us are working on bringing awareness into being – into our beings.

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