* * * Divine Company

Dream of September 2, 2020
Leaving with a group of women for another place, conscious of wearing sandals in a dark city, I spend a long, wonderful time in a house with my good friends. At one point, we're all together in a back room, and I know we're preparing to celebrate someone's birthday. I think of telling them that my birthday is coming up soon in February (in the dream it feels like December) but I don't, because there's no need; I know they will remember. We're all so very close and dear to each other, like soul sisters. 

Leaving the room, I become semi-lucid when, looking out a window, I realize it has begun snowing; I clearly discern the white veil of tiny flakes revealed by street lamps. I tell a tall blonde woman standing close by, "It's time for you to take me home." Coming to sit on the couch with me, she confirms that she did, in fact, promise to take me home. 

Getting up, I begin preparing to go, at which point I become increasingly aware of the woman who is going to take me home. Pausing in my activity, I look up at her where she is standing on a slightly raised platform just in front of me. She is stunningly beautiful, very tall and slender, with long silvery hair. She is wearing something akin to a short but full black coat/cape, as majestically elegant as a piece of the night sky wrapped around her, and she is utterly gorgeous, like no other woman I have ever seen. I think, And all my life I thought I was so pretty, even beautiful, but I really wasn't! Not compared to this woman! However, I'm not jealous; it actually makes me happy to see real, true beauty, and to feel humble now in this mysteriously positive sense.

As I begin searching for my own coat, which seems to have disappeared, the divinely beautiful woman tells me (referring to another woman who works here) that she must have put it away for me. And at once this servant brings me a tightly wrapped, compressed version of my coat. But when I open it, the coat rises up and up in the form of a white lamp stand with a decorative black trim around the edges. It's a beautiful lamp but it isn't my black coat anymore, so setting it down, I expand my search to the front of the house, and that's when I become aware we have company...
Opening the front door, I am very pleasantly surprised to see a rather large group of men in the prime of life wearing identical black First Responder uniforms, with a broad band over the chest which is a muted copper color, and mostly hidden now behind what look like sky-blue and cloud-white cartons of beer. The man closest to me on the doorstep says, "We've brought you something." I knew we were expecting a delivery, but I'm surprised the celebratory beverage is being brought to us by so many men, all of whom are not merely handsome but emanate a purely positive energy, which combined with their ideal fitness and reassuring official character make their smiles even more irresistibly attractive. Smiling back at them, I declare, "Come on in!"

I'm delighted to find myself in the midst of these spirited public servants, who all brush against me as they step inside, and the result of which is that I get caught up in their stream. But instead of proceeding into the living room, we descend a brand new narrow wooden staircase  leading down into a basement or cellar. Aware there is a passage down here which leads up to the house, I ask, "Is this the way to the kitchen?" 

And then all of a sudden I find myself sprawled on my stomach with my head at the base of the steps. The man who was walking directly behind me is now lying on top of me, as another man crouches in front of me. He asks me, "Are you afraid?" and I think I detect a hint of a smile in his eyes as he waits for my reply. I can't be sure, yet as we look at each other I respond truthfully, "No" because I have no doubt these men are all good and would never harm me. Then the man who is pressing possessively against me from behind leans forward, and looking back I glimpse a crescent of pale skin and one of his eyes framed by a suggestion of dark hair as he commands, "Tell me you love me!" 

Surprised, excited and delighted all at once, I begin waking up... END of DREAM

I believe my soul was honored with some Divine company last night! And perhaps the other women in the house close to our beautiful hostess (to Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth) are souls on a similar path as my own. When I pondered the mystery of my coat transforming into a lamp stand, I thought of what Jesus said, and certainly this is what I strive to do by writing about my dreams and experiences.

“No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.”

Matthew 5:15
The celebratory "beer" was delivered in packs as blue as an Egyptian summer sky decorated with white pyramids, which is what the pyramids originally looked like when they were still covered in limestone so they shone for miles in all directions. God says in the Bible, "I called my son out of Egypt" and when I was writing Dreaming in Egypt: The Story of Asenath & Joseph, I often thought of this while replacing "son" with "daughter". What a wonderful detail! I personally don't drink beer, but the ancient Egyptians did. Next to God, I imagine my Guardian Angel knows me better than anyone else.

The First Responder who asked me if I was afraid looks much as I have seen my Guardian Angel when he takes the more mature appearance of a man in his late thirties. Whereas there was something mischievous about the young man who pinned me down beneath him when I tripped on the steps. I only saw a crescent of his face, but I perceived and felt so much power and personality in just that one glimpse I got of him. The symbolic meaning of "steps" may help explain the metaphysical depth of his request, which was more of a command, "Tell me you love me!" My impression was that although he was in earnest he was also teasing me, perhaps even enjoying himself. 

“Steps: ASCENSION; grades in the hierarchical world and communication between these grades or levels; communion between heaven and earth; transcending profane space and entering sacred space.”i

“The stairway is the symbol of the acquisition of learning and of the ascent to knowledge and transfiguration. Like the ladder, it symbolizes the quest for exoteric knowledge when it goes up, and for esoteric when it goes down.”ii

Exoteric: Intended for or likely to be understood by the general public.

Esoteric: Intended for or likely to be understood by only a small number of people with a specialized knowledge or interest.

An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Traditional Symbols by J.C. Cooper; The Penguin Dictionary of Symbols, Jean Chevalier, Alain Gheerbrant, Translated from the French by John Buchanan-Brown, Penguin Books
I would say that pursuing a conscious relationship with my Guardian Angel in dreams (and in this case with some of his fellow Angels) decidedly qualifies as an esoteric activity. 

“Stairs represent transition, change, and personal growth. When we use them, we make direct contact with our feet. This makes them symbolic of change on a very specific, personal level… Going down stairs connects to revisiting places you have already been… or facing your own emotional development by revisiting old issues… Remember that going down is as important as going up in life. We must often revisit where we have been below before we can move upward effectively.”

Dream Sight: A Dictionary and Guide for Interpreting Any Dream by Dr. Michael Lennox, Llewellyn Publications
Not only did I find myself on a stairway, I had an extremely interesting experience on those steps which was both exciting and demanding. In physical reality, it would have proved painful to fall and land facedown on the steps with a man on top of me, but in the dream realm of the soul, the event was surprisingly exciting. I can easily believe a communion between heaven and earth was occurring in my dream's sacred space. I was aware that descending the steps into a  basement was a temporary detour before we all ascended another stairway back up into the house, where our Lady, who had promised to take me home, was waiting with other souls on the same path. Nevertheless, when the man kneeling before me looked into my eyes and asked me if I was afraid, I had to think about it for a second before honestly replying that I wasn't afraid.

“Do not be surprised if you fall every day and do not surrender. Stand your ground bravely, and you may be sure that your Guardian Angel will respect your endurance.”

St. John Climacus
The space where the man knelt facing me at the bottom of the steps was well lit, clean and empty. There was nothing to be afraid of there, and knowing I was in excellent company, I consciously submitted myself to the will of these First Responders, who I did not doubt were totally dedicated to my safety and well-being. I ended up lying on the steps as comfortably as I would have rested on a bed (which I was in fact doing in waking reality) but simply because I was dreaming does not mean I was not living an experience as real (and perhaps even more profoundly real) than those I live while awake. 
Basement is a modern word related to the ancient word Cellar: 

“In Old Testament times the flat-roofed Jewish houses had no lofts. Cool rooms, out of the sunlight, were sometimes dug below ground level and used as cellars for wine and food. Cellars could also be described as ‘treasure chambers’… On the spiritual plane the word ‘cellar’ carries a precise mystical meaning. St. Bernard of Clairvaux was to say that the Holy Spirit draws the soul into the cellar so that it shall take stock of its riches. Thus ‘cellar’ corresponds to ‘self-knowledge’. The soul which knows itself manages to show charity to others and will not keep for itself the benefits which it has received. Christ governs the soul from within and His Holy Spirit encourages it to share its spiritual resources. St. Bernard compares the cellar with a second Heaven. In mystical terms, ‘cellar’ is also a term for the secret room to which the soul must gain admittance in order to refresh itself by taking stock of the graces which it has received.”i

The Penguin Dictionary of Symbols, Jean Chevalier, Alain Gheerbrant, Translated from the French by John Buchanan-Brown, Penguin Books

Angels who were sent to deliver messages began their words saying “Do not be afraid,” or “Do not fear.”

I was asked, "Are you afraid?"... Afraid to share these experiences with the world even though you may be laughed at?... Afraid you are only imagining we are Angels, and dreams such as this are only romantic fantasies which appeal to you so personally they can't really be sent from God?

No, I'm not afraid to share my experiences with the world, but I would not be human if the latter possibility hadn't buzzed like a mosquito through my mind. But my heart brushed it aside with the willpower Faith gives me because I truly love the Lord our God with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength. 

God always gives us what we need when we need it. It was a very specific search term I entered in Google that took me directly to the 13th century German mystic Mechthild of Magdeburg, and to this poem, which helps me better understand and cherish this unforgettable dream.

“Whoever conquers the world,

And takes from his body all useless desires,

And overcomes the devil,

This is the soul that loves God.

If the world gives her a shove,

She does not suffer much.

If the flesh gives her a jolt,

The spirit will not get sick from it.

If the devil gives her a push,

The soul pays no heed.

She loves

And keeps on loving.

And she does not know how to do otherwise.

Mechthild of Magdeburg
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