I am not Catholic, and not religious in the usual sense. Yet last night, I spoke with the Pope in a dream.
In the dream, he was clearly the Pope. Everyone recognized him, even though it wasn’t clear which Pope he was. He was tall, thin, with a clearly expressive face, and energetic in his speech. But he was lying down, in a bed.
Whether he in the dream bore any resemblance to him in history or in any daytime reality, I have no idea. Maybe the dream Pope was closer to who the Pope was before becoming Pope. Maybe he was an archetype of a Pope or spiritual leader or teacher and his dual nature, and my own, was speaking in the dream.
The setting was night, in New York City. Probably, I was attending a conference on education, or maybe philosophy. In the dream, he was younger than Pope Francis I is now. Friendly. Not a stickler for protocols. Attentive. Wise. Dignified, like someone very familiar with being on stage, or making big decisions. Yet, down to earth. He was just there, lying down yet there with me, talking.
I kept on wanting to scream out with excitement to any passersby, “Here is the Pope. This is the Pope lying here. On this bed.” And to totally focus on him. Just ask him questions, like “How are you doing? What’s it really like to speak to God? What’s going on with the Yankees?” Or “is heaven really a realm separated from the known physical universe? Or is it a metaphor for what we could experience right here and now?”
I didn’t ask those questions. Didn’t even ask about the sex abuses of priests or justice for DJT’s crimes. Those questions would break the mood, the atmosphere, and send him and me back to daytime reality.
He asked about me, who I was. About my teaching. Not intrusively, but respectfully, subtly. He was a very subtle person.
And humble. I think he was enjoying the conversation and enjoying life. But why was he lying down? Was he not feeling well? Was he tired? Was it because in my actual body I was lying down and in bed? Was this a reference to the Buddha, reclining or lying down during his final illness, and death, before he entered parinirvana or complete enlightenment?
It was never clear how it happened that I came upon the Pope.
I soon woke up. It was the middle of the night. I wrote down what I could remember of the experience and then fell back to sleep.
And re-entered the dream ⎼ but from a different angle….
…But I can accurately record the feeling that remained after part one and still remains now. It was of grace and beauty. Or of love and compassion actualized in a person. Or maybe of the potential lying in all of us, to speak from God ⎼ or from whatever truth lives within us. If only…
**To read the whole post, please go to The Good Men Project.