The Storm Cloud…

When I lived in Malaysia, I was quite shocked one time as I drove past a huge billboard sign outside a construction site which had Oprah Winfrey’s head on it. Of course it wasn’t her image, but a quote underneath it which read as follows:

“Only surround your self with positive people”. My initial thoughts were ‘what an arrogant bitch she is, how is that possible and how is that right’, it’s OK for her to say something like that with her millions in the bank’.

Many years later, I read snippets about her and the truly awful things she had to endure as a child and how she deals with them even today by trying to surround herself with positive people (like Deepak Chopra and their recent foray to introduce meditation techniques on a global scale).

It got me thinking today (albeit rather tenously and randomly) about storm clouds. The top of the cloud is positively charged as is the ground, but when the conditions are right and a bank of negativity is introduced, the cloud takes a tempestuous turn and sparks fly, resulting into a lot of noise and violent bursts of raw and dangerous energy.

And so it is with us. These days I try to heed the words of Oprah all those years ago, and surround myself with positivity and positive people, and in a crazy mixed up world I think I’m doing ok.

I look at Facebook (probably too much) and there are a lot of really negative and volatile threads that appear from time to time, so I have looked by today at my own threads and found that over the past 6 months they have been all positive (which is nice).

I am trying to adopt the Sufi Three Gates position in everything I say and everything I type these days (as I posted during my Robin Williams blog 2 weeks ago), and it is not easy (as one has to remain responsive to certain situations, questions and thoughts). I have also removed feeds from Al Jazeera, Reuters and Huffington Post as it was turning into a constant positivity drain.

So where there are clouds of pure positivity (from an electrically charged perspective) no storms will grow, and we are safe from the maelstrom…

ALS(o) have this on my M(i)ND…

And so it came to be that I was eventually nominated to do the ALS / MND Ice Bucket Challenge by a good friend of mine. Without a doubt the cause is just, those folks out there that suffer from this affliction must go through a living hell. Just knowing that once diagnosed, one is subjected not only to a reduced lifespan the average life expectancy following positive diagnosis of a mere 36 months until death, but a daily degradation of physical service whilst the brain and consciousness remains untouched. A prison without walls.

Stephen Hawking is living proof of what MND does to the body and not the brain. He has defied the odds in terms of MND life expectancy and lived to a ripe old age thus far all things considered, and the scientific world is surely glad for that.

Facebook is often pilloried, but I think in this case it has been used globally as a positive tool to raise both awareness and funds for ALS and MND. Every second news feed at the moment is a video of someone taking part in their own “challenge”. It is a bit of fun for those that wish to participate, and also a vehicle for those who do not wish to participate in person, but either chose to donate to ALS / MND or to donate to other charities (for example a friend of mine’s view point was that all the wasted water concerned him, so instead he chose to donate some funds towards Water Aid), which is great too.

Personally, I chose to take part in the Ice Bucket Challenge, albeit with my own slant on it, and I had fun doing it and followed it through with a donation to MND:

http://youtu.be/kU8MIrAg8WI

However (there always seems to be an however with me), there is a part of me which remains sceptical about donations towards research, not just for ALS / MND, but for any body looking at providing cures for world ills. That part of me is concerned that the funds raised are either misappropriated or not channelled into the right places.

Taking ALS / MND as an example, £50m has been raised in one month, fantastic, but where is it going and what is it going to be used for? Will it be handed to Big – Pharma for them to use it as a way to produce a new synthetic chemical to treat the symptoms and not challenge the root cause and make a tidy profit from it all? Will it look deep into the genetics of the disease and look to eradicate it from happening in the future via a post-modern eugenics movement of sorts? Will it look into complementary therapies like yoga, meditation and reiki to see if these alternative self-healing techniques can aid or assist recovery or combat it’s onset?

All of these questions remain unanswered to me at present, but it’s something I’ll look into, but I do hope that the funds do end up in the right place and used in the right way.

This whole issue really got me thinking, and I think that it is no coincidence (I don’t see coincidences anymore – just breadcrumbs) that I started to watch the Channel 4 series Utopia (available in the UK and on Netflix) at exactly the same time as the Ice Bucket Challenge kick off.

In short, the story follows a small group of people who find themselves in possession of the manuscript sequel of a cult graphic novel called “The Utopia Experiments” which is rumoured to have predicted the worst disasters of the last century. This leads them to be targeted by an organisation known as “The Network”, which they must avoid to survive. Using the manuscript, they must uncover the meaning hidden in its pages before the disasters depicted become reality.

Without spoiling it too much for anyone that hasn’t seen it, the fundamental theme relates to the ever increasing world population, how the future demand for planetary resources will exponentially increase and whether via a ‘humane eugenics movement” is something that we could or should put in place to control the population explosion as a way to extend our existience on our little blue dot.

So this is where I get controversial and perhaps hypocritical to my original gambit about ALS and MND. As a human race, we need death. We need death by any means. Should we just treat the symptoms and keep these things around, but make sure that those who have them do not suffer? No matter how you slice it, global population growth at the rate we have seen it over the last 200 years is completely and utterly unsustainable when mapped against projected resource decline. I was frankly amazed by the following statistics relating to world population studies:

  • 35k BC = 3 million
  • 10k BC = 15 million
  • 1400 = 375 million
  • 1804 = 1 billion
  • 1927 = 2 billion  
  • 1959 = 3 billion  
  • 1974 = 4 billion  
  • 1987 = 5 billion  
  • 1999 = 6 billion  
  • 2012 = 7 billion  
  • 2026 = 8 billion  
  • 2042 = 9 billion
  • 2060 = 10 billion

A little over two hundred years ago, there were only one billion homo sapiens on Planet Earth. We have added six billion people to that amount over the last two centuries.

By the year 2060, there will be an estimated ten billion of us on a planet that is very quickly running out of natural resources. So what are we doing about it?. Rather than looking into the mid-term future and concentrating our research efforts into safe, renewable and sustainable energy sources, instead we invent new ways of raping the geological stratas underneath the Earth’s surface as a way to satisfy our immediate need for energy, much to the detriment of the climate and our precious water table.

All this is to satisfy future demand they say as renewable energies cannot satisfy the supply versus demand curve. Those who will be able to afford energy in the future will be able to pay for it, but with advances in automation and an ever increasing demand for energy (from the needs of a ballooning population), those that cannot will be pushed even further away from the “haves” causing an inevitable future class war of epidemic proportions. It seems that our train is heading towards George Orwell’s vision as laid out in 1984, or Kurt Wimmer’s dystopian world as seen in the film Equilibrium, and the brake cables have been severed.

Of my home town during the Toxteth Riots of 1980, Margaret Thatcher (the then Prime Minister in the UK) said that Liverpool as a city was expendable, and that it should be placed under managed decline until (I guess) it either ceased to exist or it became manageable (a truly awful statement said about one of the most historic cities the world has ever known (not always for the right reasons)).

So for me, the Utopia series really does address and ask us a key question of the future, albeit through shocking graphics and a very disturbing storyline. Should we be managing our own decline globally? Should we put in place a humane eugenics movement for the greater good of our offspring to try and kerb global population booms in an effort to avoid wars and the continuing fight for natural resources (in the likes of Iraq) and inevitable plunge into dystopia?

Would it be our place to put in place such a drastic action (taking over the role of the Creator if such a thing exists), and has evolution turned such amazing potential into nothing more than a collective marauding beast which will stop at nothing including it’s own inevitable destruction?

Or do we say fuck it, let’s live the dream whilst we can, because tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 1999?

My belief is that the inevitable catastrophic decline will happen (via a global war), and that at some point, mankind (if indeed it still exists post-apocalypse, albeit in significantly smaller numbers) will rightfully have no alternative but to turn our future way of life into resource based economies as detailed by The Venus Project, as the value of currency will quite literally not be worth the paper it is printed on.

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could change the paradigm into The Venus Project today. I’d move there tomorrow (I mean today)…

Where will it all end…

There is of late, a tidal wave of negativity all over the world, not one place excluded it seems. With so much turmoil going on, some of it so extreme one cannot read in-depth reports, global reality as we know it seems to be dystopic to say the least.

I have just read an article on the Ferguson Protests in the U.S, and in that particular instance, it’s not about race or colour, it’s an out and out class war. It is a perpetual conflict between the haves and have nots, governed and enforced by a totalitarian state (both government and police) that erodes the basic rights of the people (education, welfare, health and importantly positivity) until such times that the people either turn to crime or turn on each other, which gives the state an excuse to wade in all guns blazing as a show of force to let everyone know who is in charge, as is the case here.

It’s times like these (re: Ferguson) that additions to Homeland Security bills are passed, further eroding the rights of the citizens until such time as a populace is under complete and utter control, and dystopia is fully realised (akin to Orwell’s 1984).

The US is not the land of the free, and it will take an unprecedented change (or revolution) to overturn the mess.

That is one example of the “State of the Union”, but there are countless others out there, sadly too many to recount here. Whilst I am keen to stay positive in my own reality, in my own personal space and share those feelings with those who are around me, it’s difficult no to become entangled with the problems we face as a collective.

Thinking about the self (if such a thing actually exists), all “I” can do to help is to pass on positive vibes (through distance reiki) to all of those suffering at present, make donations to causes where it is clear my money will land in the correct place and that money will improve the situations of others, sign petitions where it is clear that parliaments and government have to take note and are tasked with follow on actions, and ultimately vote (or not vote as the case may be next year) for a party/collective that represents my views, my vision of what is impotant, not a vision for me and mine, but for all of us, the collective consciousness.

Peace…

The Three Gates

Reading a Guardian article about Robin Williams and some of the opinions floating around made me think about my posting of Tuesday morning, which read:

“Spare a thought too (or donation) for the countless innocents being slaughtered in Gaza, Ukraine, Sudan, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Nigeria and Pakistan as you weep into your cereals for Mork”.

My general thoughts were that the mass grieving of a celebrity (irrespective of their cause of death) was disproportionate next to the mass and unjust suffering and lack of empathy and media coverage in a country like Syria which has already lost 27,000 people this year (interestingly enough Syria has one of the lowest suicide rates in the world).

I did feel a bit guilty about the post as on the face of it, it was rather cold and I guess I was just trying to highlight the fact that there are media outlets who have the ability to help peoples perception of what really goes on in the world but either choose not to, are told not to by the government or get more ratings / money from the docile masses who believe (through either choice or indoctrination) in the tripe they pedal.

I hear that some outlets shared the exact details of how Robin Williams died and left out the important bit of why he died, what his true condition was, how it can be recognised, how the individual can self-realise that they have a similar problem, how it can be addressed and how people can formulate an opinion on it and then chose if it’s in the best interests of the public, friends or family whether you share that opinion either verbally or via social or public media outlets.

What I can say from personal experience is that when someone close to you commits suicide suddenly (both my aunt and uncle took their own lives), there is complete and utter devastation, there are initial feelings of anger and accusations of selfishness and cowardliness, but once one thinks logically about their existing condition and state of mind after those initial dark moments, those feelings quickly fade.

I do think that people with no personal connections to the likes of Robin Williams (especially those in the media themselves) or have no personal experience in having to deal with the suicide death of a loved one through mental health issues, have to be very careful in sharing their own negative opinions in a time when those who do or have known the deceased (in this case Robin Williams) are in genuine mourning.

Let’s remember Robin Williams for what he was, not selfish man or a coward, but an absolute comedy genius, a true game-changer in the world of comedy, as well as a superb actor, when he played the roles of Dr Sayer in Awakenings and Mr Keating in Dead Poets Society.

When sharing opinions about someone (especially someone who has passed away), if it’s not positive or kind or complimentary or sincere, silence is always the better option.

An old friend then put me onto something called The Three Gates, and after some research I found the following:

THE THREE GATES

The old Sufi taught that right speech had to pass through three gates. The first gate asked, “Is it true”? The second gate asked, “Is it necessary”? The third gate asked, “Is it kind”? The old sheik taught him that it would be better to be silent than to utter words that had not passed through the three gates.

For those that do not know, Sufism is the mystical side of Islam. This teaching is very similar to the kind of teachings also uttered by the Desert Fathers and Mothers of the early Christian era. Many basic teachings such as this one can be found in all the major religions. This is a great teaching regardless of what religion or philosophy you follow. Who among us couldn’t do a better job of guarding one’s speech. Try to avoid complaining, gossip, and any kind of hurtful speech. We are human; however, so there are times we do all of these things. We should strive to minimize complaining by focusing on gratitude. Minimizing hurtful speech through age and experience and being aware of ones own weaknesses will teach us to be more patient and tolerant of others. Even though we won’t always remain silent, it is better to be silent than to speak a lot.

 “One should not speak unless your words improve the silence”

Sometimes letting go is the only way…

I came across this image the other day on Facebook. The circles that I mix in, I see a lot of these, but it was this one that really struck a chord.

photo

Letting go of friends and acquaintances, sad that it is, is a relatively quick process in terms of delivery and recovery. The harder path is family. There is an expectation on all of us that we must continue even the most toxic of relationships as we are duty bound, bonded by blood to our family tree both up, down and sideways.

But like a diseased tree, the rot spreads out and starts to infect other parts, leaving the branches, trunk and lifeless eventually. Our priority is to protect our part of the tree, our stems, our offshoots. If it means that we have to order a tree doctor to chainsaw off the parts which are infecting others, then although sad, the healthy part of the tree continues to live on and regenerate, leaving only minor, indifferent scars of the past, in time.

The doctor has been, the duty done, and my offshoots are starting to bloom once again…

Reiki Diary: Marked for Life…

“Life is not the opposite of death. Death is the opposite of birth. Life is eternal”…

I’ve always thought long and hard about the tattoos I’ve had, and with the exception of perhapsone, each one has a very personal meaning to me.

It is almost two years now since that dark day of staring into the void, not knowing what lied on the other side should I be forced into it. Part of my renaissance has definitely been my sojourn into yoga, meditation and reiki, so for me it was clear that should I decide to take on extra ink, then it would be referenced to the refreshed and universally centric me and the centre of my design decision.

And so it came to me and so it came to be. The chapter I have written for my meditation technique includes one on chakras (as you would expect) and along with the text, I searched long and hard for the right images for my guide. I have seen many different formations, shapes and colours most of them quite detailed involving the lotus, but I eventually landed on beauty in simplicity, the chakra symbol itself embedded in plain circle.

As with the guide and my special connection as it seems with the number seven, I decided to have all seven chakras tattooed down my spine, and as instructed in my ‘Meds Manual’, each time I cycle (circle) through each chakra during mediation, I will feel the energy inscribed in me from the tattoo artist re-emerge, acting as it where like a catalyst to my very own and unique way of blending yoga, meditation and reiki.

Looking at the finished article, I was very happy with the end result (including the hiding of some pock marks from those acne-filled teenage years), but alerting me at the same time that I didn’t have the most perfectly in-line spine and I could do with losing a few pounds…

My soul mate also had a tattoo done on her back, our Om symbols lining up in the same place.

We truly are marked for life now, or indeed infinity, eternally linked in mind, body, soul and now ink…

“Life is not the opposite of death. Death is the opposite of birth. Life is eternal”…

Reiki Diary: June 2014 Reiki Share

A reiki share does exactly what it says on the tin. It is an opportunity for reiki practitioners of all levels to get together and discuss their recent experiences and  post-attunement consolidation. The last three months have been really busy for me, intense period in work, renewing my wedding vows in Las Vegas, on the hunt for a new job and taking up new hobbies in Standup Paddle Boarding (SUP), which involves standing up on a modified surfboard and paddling with a long oar through the water, and Land Standup Paddle Boarding, (Land SUP) which involves standing up on a longboard (four foot long skateboard in my case) and propelling yourself along the road/pavement a long oar with a rubber foot on the end.

As is the way with a life of constantly competing priorities, little time has been afforded for the practice of reiki in the usual sense. I’m still on “me-mode” with reiki and probably will be for quite some time to come, but what I have now put in place I think is rather special. I started of discussing combing reiki, meditation and yoga into one holistic approach to well being recently with “L” (my reiki mistress), and decided in the little spare time that I had to create my own technique which involves all three disciplines. OK this may well have been done before, but as a person who likes structure, I’ve not seen any guides out there which combines all three into one. And so I did, the output of my outpourings resulted in a forty-five page guide which I have had reviewed by several people (including reiki masters and holistic therapists) all of who think it’s pretty special. Now that it’s out there (far out…), all I need to do now is to set up sessions on the beach near to where I live and practice what I preach (or is it teach…).

And so to last night’s reiki share. I was due to be in attendance with my significant other, my now wife for the second time, but she has been feeling stressed of late with college work and although I tried to convince her that in itself it was a sign to go, my powers of reasoning fell short and off I went alone.

Armed with only two Lego figures and a pair of socks, I set off for “L”s house and put on Track Nine of Weather Systems by Anathema, a song worthy of any reiki warm up and warm down. Whilst I’m on the subject of Lego (and believe me that had a really key part to play last night which will be revealed shortly), I have recently been looking at Pinterest for ideas for a number of things, my next tattoo (which is this Saturday), making craft items from driftwood I find on the beach, and ideas for Lego creations when I have lost afternoons with my daughter and son, spent building cool stuff from  “fake plastic briquettes”. On browsing, I saw some photos of a Lego character with a hat and a camera, caught in the moment on DSLR (for example, the Lego camera guy taking a picture of another Lego character who has just slipped over on a banana). These pictures looked awesome and gave me the idea to create an alter-ego for myself made from Lego. And so YogaMike was born. The name itself came from “L” herself originally; when I was attuned almost a year ago now, there were two Mikes in the room, one was renamed DrummerMike and myself YogaMike. So wherever I go now, YogaMike comes with me as you can see below (New Brighton, UK; London, UK; Hoover Dam, USA):

Upon entering the “Buddhist boudoir” I was greeted by “L” with a beaming smile as per usual, as well as three new recruits, “S”, “K” and “J”, all seemed really nice. They had recently been through their Level One attunement and started off the session by sharing their experiences since then. “S” seemed to have done the most consolidation, and shared a nice tale about how she “resurrected” a butterfly at the side of the road, where she saw it lifeless and on its side, so she carefully picked it up and gave it reiki in her closed and cupped hands, after a time she felt it running around. She opened her hands and there it was upright and awake, after which she placed it on a nearby bush and went on her way. She also shared that her husband went for a job interview recently and beforehand he was really stressed so she gave him reiki the night before to calm him down and ease the load on him. He got the job. I asked her for some magic my way as I find out by next Monday if I have got the job that I have applied for recently. On that, I had a really strange dream last night that I was working in Cape Town, not the Cape Town I have seen from photographs, but Cape Town nonetheless, the exact location my potential future boss is located, I have recently found out.

“K” and “J” said that they had had a dabble but nothing really significant to date, quite like me in many ways I guess when I first started off. I then shared my journey to date with all in the room, from the dark days of two years ago, on through the turbulence and out into the light. I shared that reiki comes in many ways, not just the structured way in which “L” conducts her therapy-like sessions. For me, it comes through me via meditation and yoga, for my SUP friend “J”, it comes through him when he is out on the waves cutting the surf, feeling the kinetics of the tides and the lunar energy pulls of the moon.

I was first up on the bed for reiki, and all four ladies assumed various positions. The session was good, feeling a surge in energy through “K” through my crown and anja chakras, a churning in my core from “S” and an intense heat in my knees from “J”.

Next up was “S”. I adopted the feet position and quickly drew the power symbol before commencing. I have never really got anything from feet or legs (most of my intense experiences have come from the crown/third eye or the heart chakra). About half way through the session I felt a huge surge of energy coming from the soles of “S”s feet, so much so I had to open my eyes and take a step back. I saw “L” smiling as I did, who acknowledged what was going on too, so I grounded myself (something I had forgotten to do at the start) and went back into the soles (or was it souls) of her feet to finish off what I had identified.

I shared with her (when it was my turn to do so) my experience and she told the group that she had recently had a foot injury, something she had not shared with anyone in the room, which for me was a little shocking as that was really the first time I had picked up on a physical ailment, unknowingly.

“K” and “J” subsequently assumed the position on the bed, with only minor energy fluctuations reflecting in and from me. “L” closed the session and as we chatted for a while before we departed, I sneakily place a Lego figurine behind her on the side table and as I stepped through the door, I told her there was a present for “P” (her partner) behind her. I uploaded a picture on Facebook of the said plastic man and “P” declared his interest in securing it to the dashboard of his works van, and after seeing it she laughed out loud and said he would be made up with it.

“J” stayed behind and “S” and I walked down the path to our respective cars. I turned to her and asked her how it was she injured her foot, and to my complete and utter shock, she said she had injured her foot on one of her kids’ Lego briquettes. Now that is too spooky…

Dream Diary: If at first you don’t succeed, stop trying…

Like a great many things in life, the harder one tries sometimes, the further away achievement advances.

A classic example of this syndrome was my pursuit for a soul mate. I recall nearly 15 years ago that I lived alone, in a house that I could barely afford, begging friends or foes to lodge with me so that I didn’t have to foreclose on my property.

Thankfully, someone did take me up on that offer, and at once I set off on a quest to get out there, cover in man-oil, prowling the rock clubs and pubs of Liverpool and Birkenhead in search of girls.

I tried. Then I tried. And then I tried. Nothing. Nada. The harder I looked, the cheesier the lines, all my hand was showing was a picture card high, miles away from the full house I was seeking.

So eventually, fatigued I stopped looking. Stopped trying. And then I saw her. A chance meeting on the Liverpool waterfront, our eyes met and there was an instant connection. Something special. 15 years on and we are still together. Granted the road took a sharp bend and nearly threw us out of the car, but we were both strapped in and clung on for dear life.

Similarly (after some serious digression), my first lucid dreaming experience happened in the same manner. In the weeks leading up to my sojourn into this night-time activity, I read and read it, discussed and discussed it, and eventually I started. I tried for the first week without success, and then life got in the way slightly, my focus turning to the setting up of a local meditation circle (and associated technique I have developed) to the family, (the wife having corrective surgery post-cancer), Stand Up Paddleboarding (which is my new weekend hobby) and work.

On Monday night this week, it started. I woke at 07.00am when my alarm went off. Snooze button. Buzz Buzz, 07:09am. Snooze button. Buzz Buzz, 07:18am. Snooze button. And then something happened. Between 07:19:am and 07:26am I managed to fall back asleep. In my dream, I was out jogging when I came across an old friend who was also out jogging. He had long hair again and I recall him having it tied back in a pony tail, complete with a pretty yellow ribbon. We had drifted apart many years ago and haven’t really spoken since a chance meeting at the supermarket a few years back.

He jogged past me and didn’t seem to want to stop. I let on to him and he nodded as I asked how he was and how his new partner and child were doing. Without turning, he ran up a set of stairs in front of us which led to a bridge over a train track. As he carried on up the stairs, I thought sod you mate, I was only trying to be friendly and followed the path he trod. When I got to the top he was waiting for me, and we swapped pleasantries about our respective families, after which he asked if I wanted to back to his for a while.

He opened the door to his house and all I could see were lionesses. In the hall with the door open I could count four or five of them, wandering around the ground floor of his house, quite sedate.

I recall turning around quite shocked, and my vista changed in an instant and I was standing in my bathroom, my wife brushing her teeth in the mirror. I told her that I had bumped into A” and give the lowdown on the lions in his house.

She turned to look at me and laughed “You have either gone mad, turned into a liar or you are just dreaming”. At once, I realised that it was the latter. I was dreaming and for the first time since taking up lucid dreaming, I remembered how it was I could check.

I tried to lift my right hand to put it in full view of my face and it felt really heavy. When it eventually came into view I could not discern any of the digits, the hand was grey and devoid of fingers, like a bulbous flipper. All of a sudden a huge wave of energy came over me (feeling quite alien and strange), and I came out of my dream.

I woke up really excited though. Without the rules and regulations, the constant reality checks, the constant overlooking at dream signs and the like, I had had (albeit briefly) my first lucid dreaming experience!

So it was then that I realised I needed to get up, get dressed and ferry my wife to the hospital for her surgery. And it was then that I became a little anxious. “L” my reiki mistress told me a few months back to look out for energy waves, especially when you are not expecting them, they are a sign that the energies are shifting. On thinking that, I temporarily thought the worst and had a sense of foreboding about the events of the day.

Later on after I had dropped her off, I sat and meditated back in the garden and sent healing energies to her, whilst at the same time I sent “L” some information to support her bid for a local venture and realised the energy surge I had had in the night was a positive one, not negative, and all of a sudden the weight bearing down on me was lifted, and I knew the wife was going to be fine.

And was she! The surgery was better than we had both hoped and fingers crossed she will only need one more operation before things are back to the way they were.

We spent the rest of the evening in each others company and went to bed, holding each other.

Lucid dreaming must be like buses, you don’t see any for ages and then two come along at once!

Part way through the night, I dreamt that I was back in Malaysia and out to lunch with some colleagues. I recall wandering off on my own to a bookstore. Something wasn’t right about the scene, where had my colleagues gone, and more importantly, why was I back in Malaysia. And then it dawned on me, I was dreaming. I knew what to do, so I tried to raise my right hand, this time no issues, No blurred vision, no bulbous abomination instead of a fist, a normal right hand. I took the two fingers from my left hand and pushed them straight through the palm of my right hand. And then there was a buzz, not as intense as last night, more like a shift in the Matrix  (cheesy I know) and then everything became crystal clear. The bookstore was in ultra-high definition, I could make out the individual spines on each tome from the other side of the store. I needed to do one more reality check, I looked again at my right hand and could see the lines as I traced them across my hand. Upon realising I was lucid, my mind turned to one thing, levitation, so I dropped both arms to my side and looked up. To my shock I was no longer in the bookstore, I was in a wine store and a man in a smart suit and chiselled features (looking like the guy from The Hunger Games Part One with the ridiculous facial topiary stood in front of me and boomed “You cannot do that, I am the one who controls your dreams”. And with that I left the store and went back to work on the 19th Floor of the Petronas Towers, ready for the afternoon shift…

I will return to bringing some structure back to my lucid dreaming and catch up on the backlog of emails I’ve been sent via The World Of Lucid Dreaming website on the train back from London tomorrow. Who knows it may bring even more success, as long as I don’t try too hard…

Dream Diary: Day 4

DATE: 16th April 2014
TIME: 8 Hours 28 Mins
MEDITATION: Yes (30 mins before bed – Tai Chi / Zazen / Reiki)
REALITY CHECKS: Yes (a few times during the day)
MIND CHECKS: Yes (during meditation)
SLEEP TALK RECORDER: Yes (nothing of interest , other than a muffled “parp”)
HYPNOGOGIA: No
DREAM SIGNS: Yes
LUCIDITY: No

RECALL ALL: I was flicking, through the channels on the TV. Sugar mice in the rain…

Last night’s dreams are difficult to recall, to put into words. I can liken the imagery as I woke up to sitting on the sofa with the Sky remote, starting off at BBC on Channel 101 and ending up on Scuzz Channel 367, giving each channel on the way through a few seconds to impress me before I realise they are all full of boring dross and turning over to the next one.

It started off with me being in London and watching the second film in the Matrix trilogy, where Neo and Trinity getting jiggy with it, except this time it was odd. Very frickin odd. I can only liken it to the David Kronenburg film “Videodrome”, where James Woods takes hold of a revolver and his body morphs around it so it becomes part of him. Likewise in the dream, both Neo’s and Trinity’s arms and legs morph into the others until they become one amorphous abomination. Although it started off with me watching it on the silver screen, my vista soon changed so that I was in the room with them. Soon after a different scene, with me packing several suitcases in a hotel room, which almost as quickly changed into me taking part in the next version of Hunger Games, again almost as brief, my only recollection was being in a forest trying to activate a glow stick (but it was more of a transparent canister), with dire consequences as it heated up exponentially, a bit like the power cell in Superman I, which melted through the floor.

After I awoke briefly, I drifted off again and back to London, where I was in the office, my last day on the project. All I remember was that “S” was sitting next to me smoking a joint (I do remember smelling it, something I didn’t think one could do in dreams [like my ability to read in dreams which I have experienced this week], recalling that it smelled like a normal roll-up rather than the good stuff). Both he and “R” decided not to give me my leaving present which was on a folder up piece of paper, before an ex-colleague “F” who had a head full of hair (very improbable) asked me where I was moving to, his face fading and the dream ending.

Dream Signs: Neo/Trinity (Form/Context); “S” smoking (Context) Hunger Games (Action); “F” with hair (Form).

(NOTE: So after 4 nights of trying, the Dream Signs are most definitely there that is for certain, but there is no indication as of yet that my conscious state has the ability to recognise them and attempt to persuade my subconscious to look at my right hand. That is what I am looking for in my dreams, as soon as I see my right palm coming into focus, I will know that there has been progress. I will not lose faith, I will persevere. Patience is a virtue, as well as an awesome song by Guns N Roses…

Dream Diary: Day 3

DATE: 15th April 2014
TIME: 8 Hours 10 Mins
MEDITATION: Partial (30 mins in morning – Tai Chi / Zazen / Reiki)
REALITY CHECKS: Yes (4 times during the day / in between dreams)
MIND CHECKS: Yes (5 mins before sleep)
SLEEP TALK RECORDER: Yes (although nothing significant recorded)
HYPNOGOGIA: No
DREAM SIGNS: Yes
LUCIDITY: No

RECALL ONE: Back in the DHSS…

Another day back in the office. As I walk through the dark narrow corridor before entrance, I hear the ringing of phones. Another day back in the call centre. Mid way through my shift “GM” call me over to his desk, which for some reason is in the middle of a huge wire frame contraption which goes up a few hundred feet, noting that there was no ceiling to the office, above us only sky. He states that if I wanted, I could climb to the top of the tower and take a zip ride all the way to the bottom, as long as I would make a donation to a LGBT Charity (associated to the Pride movement), which I thought was a bit odd as he was the school bully for many years at my comprehensive school.

I agree and begin to climb the tower with a female colleague I do not know the name of. We both reach the top and secure ourselves for the zip ride. As we make our way down, I realise that the whole thing as actually a big zipper, as we speed down the spiral, I look back and the wire frame has turned into material and the two pieces separate like the zipper on a pair of denim jeans. As I get towards the bottom going faster and faster my vision fades and the dream ends.

Dream Signs: Working with “GM” (Context); “GM” interested in gay rights (Inner Awareness); Wire Frame (F); Zipwiring in office (Action)

RECALL TWO: School Dayz…

I enter the place where we are having our school reunion, it appears to be a dome type structure, a marquee of some sorts, in dark aqua marine. There is one main room where a lot of people already are, with an annexe towards the back. I see “SD” and “JD”, girls I hadn’t seen in over 30 years. As others start to filter into the room I see “K” and “H”, former friends who I hadn’t seen for quite a while as we fell out many years ago. I go over to Ken who now has no hair and his ears are sticking out, I smile to myself that he now looks like the character “Pob” from the Welsh TV station S4C.

After saying hello to “H” who I had not changed one bit in the last 15 years, I make my way to the back annexe. I see “AW” who used to be my best friend at junior school, he and a few others are gathered around a machine which presses pennies into commemorative coins for certain events, although I cannot the design of the pressed item. “AW” has an oddly shaped key and he appears to be some sort of machine repair man. I walk over to him and say ‘“AW”, I haven’t seen you in a long time, what are you doing these days?’ I look away temporarily towards an outside cooking area and when I turn back, “AW” replies to my question but with a stutter, his face has changed into “SM” and he continues by saying that he was a forensic solicitor, a private investigator who looked at cases that police couldn’t solve. We walk outside towards the cooking area, and find that it is a serve-cook, self-serve place, so I start to cook us some steaks, as I do so my vision fades and the dream ends.

Dream Signs: “K” and “H” at my school reunion (Context); “K” looking like Pob ” (Form); “AW” turning into “SM” (Form)

RECALL THREEE: CSI: Irtby…

I am on a train in a dark tunnel. The place is completely black and no lights are on. I know I’m on a train because I can hear the familiar noise of the train going down the track as well as the rocking motion. As the train leaves the tunnel, I realise that I am sitting next to “AW” (who is “AW” and not “SM” this time) and he tells me of the case he is working on. It is a very strange one. As he describes it to me, my vision changes to the actual scene of the original crime (like a dream within a dream), and I am in a really old and creepy house. At the bottom of the staircase, there are two small children, accompanied by their mother, a grotesque character who is a miniature version of a woman. All of her features are relative, just miniscule in comparison to someone of her age. She must be around the height of a two year old child.

My vision of the house fades, and I am back on the train, “AW” continues his story that it is alleged that the woman who was into dark arts and that she had murdered both of her children, and herself, but that no bodies were ever found. He is onto a lead in the case which is taking us north to the National Library Archives. As the train passes close by to a road sign, I see that we are near to Chester-Le-Street, and a short while later, we go past the Newcastle river side, the Tyne in full view. Our final destination is Irtby (which I see in big letters on the platform sign) and we get off the train and make our way over to the archives building, which coincidentally is on to the train station platform.

We go in to a small room and I’m surprised to see my friends “L” and “C” in there looking for books. This archives had a specific children’s book section and that was were “AW” suggested we go. On a small scrap of old parchment, I can make out scrawled letters EDIN TONBLY, and I point out to “AW” that it is an anagram of Enid Blyton and that we should look for her section. We find it and start scanning the bookshelves, and right in the middle of her archive, there is an ancient looking tome called “Exhumus”. I pick it of the shelf, and it’s not really a book, it has book like appearance, but also like packet. As I go to open it, dust starts to fall out. I open it and to my horror I find the ashes of the two small children and the mother, as well as the small shrunken skull of the evil matriarch. Accompanied with the remains, there are some odd black magic trinkets. I realise that the clue was in the book title, “Exhumus” relating to exhume – to unearth, and that is exactly what we have done. All of a sudden a character who is sitting on a chair at the end of the aisle approaches. It is Derek Dick (Fish from the rock band Marillion) and he tries to steal the trinkets from the ashes, as he does so, my vision fades and the dream ends.

Dream Signs: “AW” and I on investigation (Context); Miniature matriarch (Form); “L” and “C” in Irtby Archives (Context); Fish (Context)