Probably the most personal of the SW podcasts to date this week — for Cary that is, but also in a less obvious way for myself. For one thing, it was pretty gratifying to encounter another person’s dream life as weird as my own. Why do we assume that dreams have no actual bearing on reality? If “aliens” were trying to interact with us, what better place than while we are totally open, vulnerable, and in a state of consciousness that embraces, rather than flees from, strange and novel experiences? I’d wager that if any one of us could recall even a fraction of our dream lives, our ideas about who we are and what we are doing here would be so radically altered that we would barely even recognize ourselves or our lives. Does that sound like such a bad thing?
Somehow talking with Cary helped jog loose concepts in my own mind which I had barely begun to formulate, such as the idea that what we call consciousness is really unconsciousness, and vice versa. If, as I have long suspected, we actually block out the vast majority of our experiences of reality simply in order to maintain a solid, consistent sense of identity, then that means we are defined primarily by all the stuff we manage to remain unconscious of. So the more we become conscious of things outside this tightly sealed identity—other people’s thoughts and feelings, for example, the secret life of plants and animals, to say nothing of “the alien” — the less “we” as individuals will exist, clearly. “We” will slowly become awareness itself, rather than a loose jumble of personal memories, strung together and called a “self.” It is by clinging so tightly to this arbitrary identity that we manage to turn neutral experiences — such as alien energies — into malevolent and hostile forces. And it’s probably why we work so hard not to recall our dream life, too.
What’s most satisfying about these podcast chats for me is that they accelerate a process of personal discovery while simultaneously capturing it for others to listen in on. While trying to steer Cary into the more rewarding areas of his own psyche (not out of altruism, I hasten to add, but in the interests of a good show), I often find myself discovering previously unmapped areas of my own. And I may not even fully realize it until I listen in.