The Hidden Power of Dreams

The Beginning
Dreams are the mysterious language of the night. Each evening after the setting sun has beckoned the moon, a golden harvest is woven into our slumbering consciousness. Visions from the enigmatic, nocturnal realm have been described as messages from the gods and have helped shape the destiny of individuals as well as nations. Since the dawn of time, dream weavers have slipped through the crack between the two worlds to touch the reaches of inner space and reap the bounty of the night.

These secret messages can foretell your future, reveal your past, and warn of danger. They can contain creative inspiration or assist in releasing the barriers in your life. Dreams can serve as a doorway to a mystic arena for inner-dimensional travel and communication with loved ones who have passed on. They can be a springboard for night healing, astral travel, and soul searching.

My Dream Journey

THE HIDDEN POWER OF DREAMS

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My journey into the realm of dreams began on an early summer afternoon more than 40 years ago in the Midwest. It was a glorious day, with golden summer haze dusting the fields. Amber swirls of wheat and honey-coloured corn tassels sailed by on either side of me as I joyously drove my motorbike down the back roads of our rural farming community. I was 17 years old. Suddenly, the serenity of that summer day was shattered by a gunman’s bullet. I was left for dead by an unknown assailant. In that one piercing instant, my life and all that was familiar to me spun crazily; when it settled, I was no longer the same person.

Someone driving by summoned an ambulance, and I was taken to a nearby hospital. As I lay in the emergency room, struggling with searing pain, abruptly the pain subsided and I was enveloped in a quiet stillness. And then a velvet-soft, gentle blackness descended. Was I dead? I felt as if I were encased in a black bubble. Then suddenly the orb burst, and I was bathed in brilliant light. It was a most peculiar experience – because I was the light. I was an all-pervading, luminescent light. I then became aware of sweet, pure music that ebbed and flowed like waves of liquid light wafting through the universe. It was more exquisite than any symphony I’d ever heard. This undulating harmony pervaded me until I became the music. In that moment, I was made only of light and sound.

There was nothing that wasn’t me. I had no sense of time – no past or future. Everything just was… and at the same time, I felt so loved and so very loving. Something about the place that I’d traveled to – when I left my body – felt familiar. I knew that I’d been there before.

In each of us resides an intuitive sense of love that’s as natural as breathing, which goes beyond all boundaries, beyond form, like an unlimited ocean penetrating every cell and molecule of our being. I felt a deep inner awareness of this kind of love. It wasn’t the type that you can fall ‘into’ or ‘out of’. There was no separation, no ‘me-ness’ or ‘you-ness’, in this love. It just was.

I knew I’d come home. Then, unexpectedly, a deep and powerful voice declared, ‘You may not stay here. There’s something you still need to do.’

I shouted, ‘Nooo!’ as I was pulled back into my body.

I later discovered that my experience was very similar to what many individuals describe as a near-death experience. These individuals often report seeing a bright light, feeling an extraordinary peacefulness, and experiencing a vague sense of familiarity. Regardless of how you define what happened to me, it changed my perception of reality forever.

As I recovered from my injuries, I began to hear music that no one else could hear, and I was often aware of very loving spirit beings surrounding me. Another astonishing revelation was the awareness that ‘I’ was separate from my body; ‘I’ wasn’t my body. As a result of the shooting, my physical being was damaged – my body lost a spleen, adrenal gland, and a kidney; had damage to my stomach, intestines, lung, and diaphragm; and also had a plastic tube inserted to replace my aorta – but ‘I’ was whole. To me, this was an amazing realization, and it greatly assisted me in the healing of my body. It was a subtle shift, but simply beginning to identify with my spiritual essence – instead of my physical presence – allowed me to recover more quickly. I became extraordinarily healthy in spite of my injuries.

In addition, my dreams began to take on a particular vividness and significance. Somehow, my brush with death allowed me to stumble into dreamscapes of inner dimensions long forgotten. This was all very strange to me because of my previous rational, linear approach to life. Even though my dreams took on an intensity and were often prophetic, they weren’t always idyllic. Somehow, when those nocturnal portals opened for me, images that had been held back surged forward en masse. Often the visions were terrifying; at other times, they were profoundly soothing and reassuring. In my dreams, I’d occasionally catch a fleeting glimpse of the beautiful, golden place to which I’d traveled when I was thought to have died. When I clutched at these cloudy images, they vanished like mist. I longed to return, but I wasn’t willing to die to get there.

Shortly after, a book on Zen Buddhism found me. I was impressed with the remarkable similarity between my near-death experience and the content of the book. It talked of enlightenment, of going beyond linear time, and how a satoriexperience allowed a person to see the great light and feel a oneness with all things. Reading this book, I wondered if it was possible to reach that place again without dying. I knew that it was time for a change in my life: the time had come for me to search for the land beyond the living that I’d encountered when I was shot.

From The Hidden Power of Dreams, ©2009 by Denise Linn, published by Hay House.