I dreamed of you once:
A million stars' light was shining
But not for my heart
For the darkness had seized it.
Old pictures were all I'd been left with
And anger burned my throat
Clouding my eyes with tears
of rage. Still, you came.
Dressed in white - you held my hand
Like that of a frightened child
And suddenly I saw the stars twinkle
just for me. I wish I had asked you
What to do next
But I just sat there so quietly
Watching the first ray of Dawn
Shining its way to my Spirit.
The poem above is something I wrote in 1999, trying to process a dream I'd had about a famous person. This person had passed away years before, when I was only a child, and in the dream I revisited my unresolved shock: my subconscious mind showed me different newspapers covering the story, which I angrily tore up. (That person had been special to me - a wondrous creature living far away - despite being a controversial figure). I recall that I had indeed seen a few of these newspapers at the time, though not directly (they were shown as part of a televised documentary).
True to dream symbolism, this revisiting took place in a "dark basement". There was an elevator there, which was the only source of light, but that light was cold, uninviting, even frightening. So I ignored it and concentrated on my anger and helplessness.
At some point, I became aware that there was something else in the basement, too: a stairway. Someone "materialized" down this stairway and stood a few steps away from where I was. I sensed he was that person whose death had shocked me, even though he seemed different and wore a white robe. I was now my current age. He asked me whether I felt comfortable with going up the stairs, as he had something to show me. I agreed and went up with him to the top of the stairs, where I could see a twilit sky. He said, "Look, can you see the stars? They are shining for you."
I could not fully understand his words or what that had to do with anything, but I looked up, and saw the faint stars becoming stronger. At the same time I noticed he was waiting behind me now, as I had stepped further to the top of the stairs. The stars seemed to be dancing, or swirling, and my mood eased as I laughed. Then, I realized a golden substance in the stars' cores was reflected in the same golden substance found within me. Afterwards, I flew off the edge.
A few weeks after writing my poem, I found where this "dream signal" had originated and the information it was trying to convey. Among other things, this was connected to an intriguing tale about Vampires and their ways, which - although fictional - explained the basic concepts and their origins.
Looking at my dream as one would watch a film, one can detect that I had been such a character stuck in the dark, and that probably a compassionate being showed me a way out in a manner I could accept. My cynical part derided the images of "white robes" - suspecting that religious imagery had been stuck in my brain, which was only playing back combinations of what had already been recorded. But since this being's goal was not to prove or disprove religion in any way, he was the only one who succeeded in reaching me. The elevator, on the other hand, represented judgment and a disregard for my free will. One can detect how my attitude problem (suspicion, impatience, overly demanding) arose from judging and being judged, which contradicted my inner core. Religious people often assume that if they cynically throw God at you to contradict you when you are down, they get to win points - they fail to see that they are merely projecting their own duality and unresolved issues.
Therefore, I will not involve myself in proving or disproving religions or the afterlife in this essay - even though all these aspects must be studied in their own time and place. I must, however, present a few of my findings on parallels between the past civilizations and our times, because I believe they can help relate to the non-judgmental point I am attempting to make.
Recently in 2010 and 2011, I came across these two songs, for the first time:
Annie Lennox: Love Song For A Vampire, "Dracula" OST (1992)
Now the floor of heaven's laid
With stars of brightest gold
They shine for you, they shine for you
They burn for all to see -
Take That: Rule The World, "Stardust" OST (2007)
All the stars are coming out tonight
They're lighting up the sky tonight
For you, for you -
All the stars are coming out tonight
They're lighting up the sky tonight
For you, for you -
(I was already very familiar with the Coldplay song Yellow, which had helped me through a very difficult time.
Look at the stars,
Look how they shine for you,
And everything you do
Oh yeah your skin and bones,
Turn into something beautiful,
You know, you know I love you so,
You know I love you so.
I swam across,
I jumped across for you,
Oh what a thing to do.
Cos you were all "Yellow",
I drew a line,
I drew a line for you,
Oh what a thing to do,
And it was all "Yellow."
And you know,
For you I'd bleed myself dry,
For you I'd bleed myself dry)
This looked like an amazing overlap with my old experience, so I decided to investigate further. I already had some clues as to where I could find these Stars of Gold: the Egyptian concept of the Underworld is fascinating, and it was something I was already aware of. People's hearts - their deeds, mixed with their conceptions about the world - undergo a constant "weighing" which determines how light- or heavy-hearted a person is (remember this is never about "payback" or judgment but about really looking at what is going on with the soul). The Star was the Egyptian symbol for destiny and the number five. The ideal of the realized human was to become a star, and to become one of the company of Ra (our Sun), "sailing" with him in the Ark of Millions of Years (our Galaxy). The five-pointed stars were the homes of departed souls:
Lines 886-9: I am a soul ... I (am) a star of gold... and Here I am, O Ra, I am your son, I am a soul ... a star of gold...
Line 904: be a soul as a living star...
(the Unas Funerary Texts, also known as the Pyramid Texts)
The Egyptians also believed that once a person had attained their Star body, they would remain forever as a beacon to others on the same path.
It is, therefore, intriguing how the word "star" is applied today to famous people, even though it has declined in positivity over time, and now usually implies an exaggeration, if not a complete falsehood. Following the stars - a redirection from the symbolism held by Royalty - can be considered a new form of religion, perhaps much closer to its emotionally raw ancestor: we project exclusive (superhuman) qualities and place stars on a pedestal, but if they disappoint us by showing a human side, we quickly tear them apart. These emotions bounce and resonate, amplified by the collective mind - but there is also a primary source, or embodied initial hypercommunication. The Vedas, which are the old Indian holy books (their title means Vision in Indo-European), explain this effect that special beings called gods or Devas (from which we derive divine and diva) have on people - an effect, they say, derived from a cosmic battle where their inner natures are combining towards perfection. Put more simply, humans find themselves in the middle of a big domestic fight.
In our modern world we don't call them gods (with some exceptions!) but Superstars, but the process of relating to them is similar: we imagine they are gifting us with special consciousness, we build them shrines, try to attract their benevolence (a smile, a signature...). They go through ordeals in order to purify and balance - what, exactly? And why do so many stars have such problems with love?
Well, the Vedas say, true gods all come in pairs - they each know their mate, which in turn gives them access to the whole Universe. When people become superstars, however, they are required to make a separation between their work and their personal life - the needs of each beginning to pull in different directions in a tug-of-war, one getting denied by the other.
The soul, that dimension which served to bring it all together for the individual, suddenly finds itself in a no-man's-land, and people find it very hard to relate to themselves as a whole being - especially if their superstardom is a clever defense mechanism hiding personal pain or feelings of unfulfilment. This dichotomy is maintained and amplified, not solved. So someone has to "jump across" as the Coldplay song suggests.
Osiris (possibly a rewriting of Sumerian/Babylonian Tammuz) was the first character known to us in modern times to become a Vampire figure. Many popular shows will make references to his story and to the story of Isis, Osiris' Cosmic love who puts him back together in one piece. But except for the purpose of popular visual entertainment, being a Vampire is not a biological condition - it is a spiritual condition, whereby someone drains energy ("blood") from others.
I would like to look at the figure of Dracula now, as the legend is based on a historical person from my country. Here, I am searching for clues to do with the tyrannical aspect of that "star of gold".
In my opinion, he was brave for two reasons: being born in such crazy, pressured times as his, and continuing to function while being traded off by everyone he trusted. Apart from that, such righteous Nationalist notions that we are somehow lacking another polarized leader (who fails to see that "good" cannot always be defined as "us" and "evil" as "them") seem nothing more than frustrated fantasies of a people who has not yet processed its own collective pain and misconceptions.
The symbol Vlad Tepes is wearing attached to his hat - the golden 8-pointed star, the symbol of Sumer (where it represented being free with your Love, or the high civilization of Adam and Eve) - has been in our culture even before Sumer's establishment. It is interesting to ask why the painter decided to place this star symbol in the painting, and not just to accept its presence as a realistic depiction of historical fashion. What is being communicated? Did the painter also believe Vlad Tepes to be a holy freedom fighter, or did he think the man's soul was lost? We cannot know, but we can learn from these alternatives. If a man's heart is a star of gold, but the man's heart is broken, then overindulging in one's higher self - like the Egyptians and others did in their culture - can yield disastrous results for the individual and society.
As with Dracula's legend extending beyond his time, Osiris (Nimrod) was labelled a tyrant whose eventual fall was inevitable, because (we are told) the "true god" in his story was offended. People who were sad at his passing back then were likewise labelled as "misled by the devil". Very recently, I have learned (from a very interesting Druid man) that even King Arthur - a positive character today - had been originally written as a tyrant in history (hence, in my opinion, making his mystical "Fall" take on a different meaning: that of liberation from his grip on Albion). It was only through the work of several visionary individuals that we have received alternative accounts about these figures, and have explored versions of them as enlightened "higher consciousness" types.
What does this all mean?
Spike (William) experiences his soul, as Buffy realizes her love for him, in Buffy The Vampire Slayer (2003). In the story, there are also people who worshipped Vampires because they thought Vampires had a higher consciousness - these people are said to be "fools" for not realizing the Vampires would feed on them. But the Vampires are also "being fed" the illusion of having everything they need.
It was not something I noticed right away, but eventually the connection between these stories made itself apparent after many years of study: LONELINESS. The theme of loneliness, more specifically the loneliness of immortality, is the thread which binds it all together.
Whether conceptualized as good or evil by the general population, these figures in history were "immortal", tied to a role which was (or appeared) more or less inescapable. Some fought it, others accepted it without question, but it came in a package deal and the price was loneliness - for, obviously, no-one could or would relate to that which they were compelled to do. There was no place for personal feelings in it, for that which is termed "mortal" or "human".
But what is "mortal"? The word refers to death, more specifically the ability to die. We have an incomplete view of death to-date. The important aspect of death is that it allows a person to switch realities. This is what death is, it is the ability to "exit" and access another type of life. Not to be confused with taking one's own life: I am referring to the ability to switch to a different frequency by choice, for example from sadness to joy. As children, we all possess this natural ability to imagine ourselves in various roles - we do not restrict ourselves to being just one figure. We switch back and forth between prince, princess, cowboy, Indian, puppeteer and favourite tv show hero. We easily identify with each of these and we just as easily lay these roles down when it's time to go home for lunch. We "make-believe".
As we grow up, there is pressure to define ourselves and choose where we stand in life. Which is all right, as long as we do not forget our nature is an ever-evolving one. But people do forget that, and when those people are also trained for higher offices, the pressure to confine oneself to the single (solitary) role is immense. Suddenly, normal things like "I wish I wasn't So-And-So today" become unimaginable, not allowed, because they diverge from the path, from the general image accepted about you as a person. A very popular term for this entire situation is "losing one's soul". But it would be more appropriate to say one is participating in an illusion.
It paints a rather bleak picture, doesn't it? All this knowledge makes the heart heavy, doesn't it? Well, here is the catch: this bleak picture is only another facet of our own Self-Awareness, another role that we play at some point. Over-identification with this role is what drags us down and restricts us, so we must remember to access another viewpoint. Otherwise we undergo an energy drain, which in turn transforms us into Vampires, needing to feed on others' energy to fill the void inside. But there is always that character who comes in and raises the vibe, thus: "So what if you have sinned? Just be who you really are, don't allow your attachment to your own image to define your life". Such a character speaks from a place of personal balance (which makes me very happy about the person who reached me in the nightmare basement, as I've always known he was married but I wasn't sure whether he had found his way home).
I still cannot be entirely certain, but the simple existence and spreading into Awareness of the alternatives I mentioned (books, songs which give access to one or more alternative versions of "history") does suggest that we are closer to busting the collective illusion. We are reconnecting with the human level, putting these experiences in their rightful place, and reconnecting with Soul. As some spiritual people say, our Souls no longer tolerate the lack of the companionship we secretly desire, and have decided for this reconnection to take place.
In conclusion, I agree it is nice that those legendary figures could "die", and I do not miss the creations issued from their pain. They are not "higher consciousness types" because of their legendary status, as was believed in the past: they become higher consciousness due to the awakened perception of their reconnection with their Soul, which is higher than just one great role. So it is not fair to equate those limited roles they played in history, with who they are as souls, as human beings. It's all right to cry because you miss them or because you imagine what their Soul must have gone through. Don't get overly heavy about it as stated, but allow yourself to feel the way you feel - not the way you are supposed to feel. Feeling emotions doesn't mean being misled by the Devil, because the Soul is so much more and you have now learned to see it, past the image; and for that completed Awareness to peek out, setting the Spirit free, there is always -
a Love Song For A Vampire.
(3.10.2011 - article written after only a couple of lessons of Tai Chi, the balancing of one's energy system)