by Dr. Alberto Villoldo,
The Four Winds
Whether you realize it or not, we are all dreaming the world into being, although most people have lost the ability to guide the dream, and are, as a result, at the mercy of the collective nightmare.
The Shaman lives in a dream, but not the kind of dream that belongs in the domain of sleep. Shamans understand the waking dream, and can change the dream by changing their relationship with the luminous strands that make up the energetic realm. This is how creation happens.
The aborigines of Australia believe that it was in dreamtime that the world was created, and follow the dream lines when they go on a vision quest. For the shaman in the Americas, the task is to dream with their eyes open – to envision the possible before they envision the probable. It’s not a fantasy or hallucination, but rather the ultimate nature of reality itself, where one can actually steer and guide the dream.
The dream me – the creative matrix– does not exist in a place outside of us, but rather within. It infuses all matter and energy, connecting every creature, every rock, every star, and every ray of light or bit of cosmic dust. For the Earthkeepers, dreaming reality is not only an ability but a duty, one we must perform with grace and love so our grandchildren will inherit a world of peace and abundance.
Students of shamanism learn how to awaken the ability to dream with their eyes open and share in the power to co-create reality with the help of the Universe. As they begin to flex the muscles of courage, they let go of their limiting beliefs and push past their fears. They can then begin to create truly original dreams that germinate in the soul and bear fruit in their life. The nature of the cosmos is such that whatever dream you have about yourself and the world will become reality.
The shamans I studied with in the Andes and the Amazon believe that we can only access this power by raising our level of consciousness. When we do so, we become aware that we’re like a drop of water in a vast, divine ocean, distinct yet immersed in something much larger than ourselves. It’s only when we experience our connection to Infinity that we’re able to dream powerfully.
But it requires a visceral understanding to experience it in every cell of our body. In fact, the intellectual understanding of our ability to create reality forestalls the kind of dreaming we’re capable of. If we don’t get beyond the mere intellectual aspect, we’ll end up lowering the bar and creating a far less glorious and beautiful experience than we’re capable of crafting.
Although the mind resists it, the fact is we all have a choice between having the life we want or creating the reasons why we can’t have that life. You can have joy and peace, or you can have that big black bag full of all the sorrowful incidents and accidents that happened to you in your childhood or in your last relationship.
You can have your wounds, or you can have your glory. You can live the life of a victim, burdened by the traumas of your past, or you can live the life of a hero. But you can’t do both. If you want to feel empowered, you need to make a conscious decision to dream a sacred dream and practice courage.