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A Spiritually Enlightening Online Magazine. July's Theme: "Key to Heaven"
Volume 3 Issue 5 ISSN# 1708-3265
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Expanding Horizons: The Meeting of Stone and Sky

with Dawn Baumann Brunke

Several years ago I had a dream of being in an old, empty, red-brick building. It was, perhaps, a warehouse, immensely long and narrow. I noticed I was on the top floor and there was no roof. An intense, blue-black evening sky loomed above. However, even without a roof, I felt safely enclosed for there were large red-bricked walls on either side of me. The walls were quite high and were punctuated by long, narrow windows. I could easily see out of the windows as they were placed closely together yet, owing to the size of the walls, I felt small within the room.

In the odd way of dreams, I was trying to get to one end of the room - but what a far way to go! I began to run and then thought of leaping. It was at that moment I woke up in the dream. Realizing I was dreaming, but taking care not to wake myself, I had the idea that instead of leaping to the end of the room, I could fly. As I sometimes did in lucid dreams, I moved my hands together in front of me, arms outstretched, as if launching myself upward. Very easily, I jumped up and 'into' another level of space. Suddenly I was flying, completely horizontal and comfortable - flying through the room. As a smile came over my entire being, I cautioned myself to keep the flow of consciousness light - lucid, yet not too hard-edged or rational - so that I could maintain this state within the dream. It was great fun and I loved the feeling of flying through the building, under the cool, dark, wide open sky.

Upon waking, I began to write down the dream. At the time, I was working with the notion of shapeshifting and had been recording examples of differing perspectives of the world as seen through the eyes of different animals. As I wrote the details of the dream in my notebook, I thought of how dreaming likewise brings us exceptionally vivid examples of shifting bodily perspectives.

"Dreaming is often a form of shapeshifting; that much is obvious from the start." I heard the words clearly in my mind, yet wasn't sure who was speaking. As I closed my eyes, to better hone in on this unexpected conversation, I saw the image of a large gray rock which simultaneously 'held' the shape of a human. As I watched, I saw the human figure dissolve through the rock to reveal a brilliant nightscape of stars against a dark blue sky.

"This image reveals another facet of the nature of shifting forms - a visual example of how so much is interrelated beneath appearance," continued the voice. "When you think about dreaming and shapeshifting, yes, of course there is a connection. This is a broad and general observation. But rather than compartmentalize, we feel it is best to experience each moment as a link to other realities. That is our view on shapeshifting."

"Who are you?" I asked.

"We are the beings who regulate the interconnections between stone and sky - one feature of the many links between earth and heaven. The picture [of the human in the rock who becomes the stars] is ours. We show it as an illustration of melding realities - that is, not simply a 'shift' from one view to another, but an example of being in which you are aware of both realities (and, as you become more adept, of many realities) in simultaneity. The highest 'enlightenment' teaching we carry is a stance wherein all interconnections are held at a conscious (though this does not correspond exactly to your notion of consciousness) level. In other words, one is fully aware of all aspects of one's being.

"When you tune into your dream, you may see the aspects of stone (brick walls) and sky (through the window). Between the two, you fly - though note how you fly: still within the confines of the building."

It became obvious to me then, though I hadn't noticed it before: even though the sky was wide open above me in the dream, I flew only within the confines of the walls.

"As you become more aware, you open to greater possibility and may choose to fly beyond your walls, above your walls, into the open air. And, after many such adventures, perhaps you will be willing to work on holding both stone and sky, keeping a perspective of each. Your dream would change then, of course."

I had the distinct impression the beings were smiling.

"We seek to educate those who are interested and open to knowing more about the interface between open space and closed space. By that we mean, the seemingly open space of air and the seemingly closed space of solid objects, such as rocks, stones, walls.

"There is a phrase you have - 'running into a brick wall'. It means you are held by limitations. These limitations are of your own making, of course. Some choose to go beyond their limitations while others turn in defeat. We work with the ones who choose to go beyond the wall, to learn how to move beyond the limits of held belief.

"Our nature is not only of stone and sky, but also about outer and inner, visible and invisible, and other so-called dichotomies. We work primarily with merging these though shifting realties.

"In a purer form of nature, we are about mountains and pure air. When you see mountains shrouded by mist or clouds, we are at work. Our being is a misty sort of presence, one that blurs boundaries, encourages climbers and wall pushers to go beyond. In fact, we work often with climbers and explorers. In a sense, we are the underlying spirit of adventure when it comes to doing what has not been attempted before."

Although I had not even come close to fully digesting what these beings of stone and sky were saying, I was struck with the notion that what they were speaking of was a truly immense journey, an ever ongoing movement beyond the confines of what we know as self and soul. And perhaps beyond that as well.

"There is always more," they patiently agreed. "Always."

It took some time for the dream images of stone and sky to work their magic, for the division between the two to soften within me, gradually revealing a more personal experience of human stone merging with the stuff of stars. What I have come to see is this: no matter where we are in our own journey of discovery - exploring shadowy basements of consciousness or seeking distant vistas of awakening - we are in a process of knowing ourselves ever more deeply. On the ever-expanding adventure of enlightenment, we are always more.

Dawn Baumann Brunke is the author of Animal Voices: Telepathic Communication in the Web of Life and Awakening to Animal Voices: A Teen Guide to Telepathic Communication with All Life. Both books explore the deeper nature of our relationship with animals, nature, each other and ourselves. For more, see Dawn's website.

Be sure to read the reviews of her books in our May 2005 Issue and our January 2006 Issue.

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