AN OVERVIEW OF THE GENERAL AREAS OF STUDY FOR THE WEBLOG AT
CHRISTIAN DREAM INTERPRETATION
Today, my focus will be on those areas of inquiry that will serve as a basis for our exploration into the many mysteries surrounding human spirituality, dreams, visions, and the teachings of the Christ. The previous posts have briefly described our primary themes, guiding beliefs, and basic principles. In this post, I would like to outline a series of specific areas of study that will allow us, over time, to fulfill our fundamental goals and objectives.
As stated earlier posts, I believe that our primary topics of study are a unified whole. This unity cannot be easily divided, for if we do so we lose sight of the many dimensions, both cosmic and earthly, which makes the human being truly unique. It is my belief that such divisions as are commonly imposed by the thinking of modern man are unwise and ultimately counterproductive, for they obscure and confuse our understanding rather than provide clarification and illumination. These divisions, however convenient, are essentially arbitrary, subjective, and, ultimately, negative, and they are fundamentally destructive to the earthly and cosmic unity that is the essential characteristic of each human being. Such capricious and irrational divisions imposed upon the inherent unity of man eliminates any possibility of achieving an understanding of human spirituality, thus making a coherent and logical approach to this sublime realm of study exceedingly difficult, if not impossible.
Now, to somewhat insulate myself somewhat from certain criticism I will readily admit that in the posts to this weblog I will divide, delineate and fragment these topics as I strive at the same time to demonstrate that they are indivisible. Thus, as is so often the case in human affairs, I will be doing, to a certain extent, the very opposite of what I argue is required. Please understand that this is necessary for purposes of presentation in this forum, that we are bound by the constraints of language, time, and our chosen medium of communication. Yet, I assure my readers that I will never loose sight of the complex unity, both spiritual and physical, that is to be found in the whole human being.
It is important for the reader to understand that the unity of which I speak only really comes into focus among those who have made some progress in their spiritual development. For a contemporary individual who lives at what we might call normal, day-to-day levels of consciousness it is all too easy to be blinded by the many veils which shroud the mind and sensory perceptions. The Apostle Paul reminds us that “ . . . we see in a mirror dimly .. .” (1 Corinthians 13:12) However, as we make a deeper commitment to the teachings of the Christ it is possible to develop higher levels of clarity and greater insight so that things that were once hidden can come into view. The Apostle Paul describes this stage as “mature” (1 Corinthians 2:6). Paul continues to explain that it is only after the student has achieved a degree of maturity and opened more fully to the power of the spirit that they can then begin to receive some measure of illumination. At these more advanced stages we can begin to comprehend the dynamics of the spiritual planes and open to some of the deeper mysteries of the Christian religion. (cf. 1 Corinthians 2:10-14) Here, we begin to fathom the fullness and richness of human spirituality and move the center of our understanding from the fragmented and abstract thinking that is characteristic of modern man to the unified and indivisible wisdom that comes to us from God.
To use our inner spiritual experiences and the wisdom of the Lord as a means to achieve maturity is the path of development offered at Christian Dream Interpretation.
With these considerations in mind I will address in a wide range of topics within these nine areas of study:
- The practical skills which are necessary so that we can receive and understand the nighttime revelation of the Lord. This will include such topics as how to achieve restful sleep, how to keep a dream journal, what to look for in dreams, and, in general terms, how to so structure our lives so that we might increase our receptivity to His Word.
- The different kinds of dreams and the important features found in dreams, for example, symbols, setting, and narrative.
- How to comprehend the language of the soul and the spirit.
- The cosmic and earthly nature of the human being, including the soul, the spirit, the mind, the emotions, the physical body and the spiritual body (cf., 1 Corinthians 15:44) to understand how these constituent features comprise the totality of the individual human being, connect us with the spiritual planes, and interrelate with and contribute to all life processes, including dreams and visions.
- The stages of dream instruction and how dreams methodically guide each individual as they progress in their spiritual development.
- The role played by the forces of light (angels) and the forces of darkness (demons) as they appear in our dreams and in our earthly lives.
- The principles upon which the art of dream interpretation is founded.
- The dreams that are found in the Holy Scriptures and the personalities that are associated with dreams, visions, and prophecy.
- The ways in which other traditions understand dreams and occasionally comment on some of the modern methodologies that seek to explain the processes related to phenomena of sleep and dreams.
It is my hope that this agenda will serve to inform the reader about the supremely valuable, yet largely untapped resource that we have available to us every night as we sleep. While I believe that the topics outlined above provide an approach to our study that is fairly comprehensive, I recognize that it is possible that important areas may have been omitted. With this in mind, I would like to encourage readers to make suggestions regarding any subjects that ought to be included. I will do my best to address these suggestions, as well as your questions, in future discussions.
In our next series of posts I will examine a range of topics related to the question of how to achieve restful, refreshing, and revitalizing sleep. This skill is the foundation upon which all successful dreamwork is built. The important role that high quality sleep plays in our lives is largely misunderstood and is not widely appreciated in our culture. While there is a general recognition that many suffer from insufficient sleep and poor quality sleep, there are only the most superficial ideas about how to address these challenges. I will cover these and related questions regard sleep, and especially focus on the relationship between quality sleep and illuminating dreams.