Thursday, May 6, 2010

A Dream: Quakers and an Earthenware Pot

I dreamed that blogging Friends were looking at evidence of Jesus' life among us. It was a crystal bowl of exquisite design said to belong to Christ and his followers. Various Friends discussed their beliefs related to this ancient evidence. I remained unimpressed by the vessel because it appeared to be manufactured at a later date and betrayed a European and even American artistic and industrial background. The glass was too clear and the edges too crisp. Even so, it was impressive, old, and fragile. In fact, it was so old that it was chipping away. One could see that underneath was an even older vessel made of red clay. I could see the hand-turned pot beneath the shine of the crystal and I could even touch the earthenware bowl's base where it was completely exposed at the base. Touching it sent shivers right through me.

And I thought, "What if this is real? What if he was real?" And I thought how much I wanted to believe not in the beautiful crystal form but in the rude, red earth beneath.

15 comments:

Lone Star Ma said...

Shiver!

Daniel said...

Hi Hystery,
What a powerful dream.

Sounds like a parable of Jesus.

In the Light,
Daniel

Liz Opp said...

Beautiful in both the imagery and in the telling.

Blessings,
Liz Opp, The Good Raised Up

Diane said...

Hi Hystery,

I agree with others that this a beautiful and poetic piece. It seems to be about the possibility of breaking through illusion to find truth.

Anonymous said...

"What if he was real?"

your dream was not about pottery or chrystal

this was Jesus speaking through the Holy Spirit, asking 'why do you doubt?' 'why do you need proof?'

if you doubt the testimony of Quakers down through history, doubt the Gospel accounts, then, apparently, Jesus is going follow you into your dreams.

You are clearly being led by Him, unknowingly, and this dream was to counter your human tendancy toward doubt.

Hystery said...

Anonymous,

I think the dream was about the fact that I believe in a reality that exists apart from and deeper than Gospel testimonies and the history of Christian writings which I am clear are historically situated testimonies. I have spent much time arguing against historical interpretations and judging my relationship to the labels and definitions of Christian tradition when the living "Christ" has always been accessible to me if I only look past the cultural overlay and quit feeling sorry for myself that orthodox folks do not agree. That which is sometimes called "Christ" is a more ancient, human, and earthy reality than the Christian story itself and it is that reality that I must touch regardless of others' bedazzlement at what amounts to merely cultural (albeit beautiful) overlay. I think the dream was about not giving a hoot what the apostles said or what early Friends said, but in listening to what I have always known instinctively. There *is* one who can speak to my condition and that one has been with me all along and is available to all human beings regardless of their cultural and religious baggage. The Truth that I have held dear since my Christian childhood is no less real for all the broken and worn glitz the Church in its many generations and many manifestations has laid upon it. So Truth for Authority and not Authority for Truth. Let the Church of whatever name serve itself. My service should be to a deeper authority.

Terry Mehlman said...

Thanks so much for posting this dream and also for your comment following the post.

You have spoken truly to my condition and helped me to clarify some things I have been pondering lately.

- Terry Mehlman

forrest said...

I want to just say "Yay!" about this. That hardly seems adequate, but 'tis how I felt about it!

When I used to occasionally read the Bible as a kid, parts were downright scary, but often I'd have a sense of some meaning beyond the text that had been passed down. Some things said of or attributed to "Jesus" were in character, others not so much. When I later got around to modern historical background approachs, it wasn't just that I learned new things about what was really going on, but that what I'd felt as a kid was fitting into place, making more sense.

[Aside from that--Since I don't seem to be all that good a Quaker, any chance I could join up over at the Bad Quaker Bible thing? It seems to take a fairly good size group to keep a Quakerish Bible site active, what with members like me going dormant from time to time.]

Hystery said...

Forrest,

Thanks! I always love to read your perspective.

As for the Bad Quaker Bible blog, others will have to answer your question. I'm not affiliated with it. I figured I was so Bad a Quaker that even they didn't want me!

sta┼Ťa said...

Hystery, I am holding you tenderly in the Light. Certain Christian music still speaks to me that way -- touching me on a deeper level of truth than Christianity, or what we call Christianity today.

Anyway, F/friend, in many ways, you speak my mind, and my heart.

Blessed be.

Alice Y. said...

> I figured I was so Bad a Quaker
> that even they didn't want me!

Don't bet on it!

I often advise my fellow quakes when feeling out of sorts - don't quit, let 'em throw you out if they dare.

Great dream honey. That real red clay! The truth makes itself known.

Anonymous said...

quote:

"when the living "Christ" has always been accessible to me . . . That which is sometimes called "Christ" is a more ancient, human, and earthy reality than the Christian story itself and it is that reality that I must touch . . . I think the dream was about not giving a hoot what the apostles said or what early Friends said, but in listening to what I have always known instinctively."

Hystery,

Of course Christ is eternal, and existed long before mankind, and was part of the creation of the earth and all things. So, your "instincts" are correct. But the testimonies of Friends and the Gospels are also reflecting these instincts. You lay too much upon them, if you expect them to prove anything. Your experiences are validating them, rather than being apart from them.

Quaker Gem said...

There is only Truth and ultimately, Truth is unknowable - beyond our ken. The contrivances of outward religious form, the crystal bowl and even the red clay are only reflections of our own attempt to understand that which is unknowable. It is only in acknowledging that, as we each carry a measure of the Light, so we each carry a measure of Truth. It is only when we can open our hearts and minds not only to understanding the outward Spirit but to understanding and welcoming the Spirit as it manifests in one another that we come close to All.

Hystery said...

Quaker Gem,

Yes! Amen.

Anonymous said...

it's the Holy Grail?