by Christine Metawati
The following post was first published as an article in March 2005 Metta Center Newsletter.
This story was given to me in a dream about a year ago. I feel that I am blessed with this incredible dream so that I can share this profound story, rich with symbolisms, with others. May you enjoy it as much as I have had. It continues to be a great medicine for me.
A young man of was sitting by the river. He seemed busy working with his hands. On a closer look, he was busy working with a piece of wood, shaving the bark of the wood with his knife to reveal the smooth white inside of the wood.
Earlier, he had a desire in his heart to make himself a walking stick. As he walked by the river, he found this piece of wood that was just perfect for what he had in mind. The wood was the right height and about the thickness he wanted. He wanted to have a walking stick that was smooth to his touch, and the bark on this wood was rough so he decided to smooth it out with his knife.
He worked diligently like this for a while, sitting by the river. He gently turned the wood from side to side as he shaved the bark off from one end of the wood to the other. He was very happy working like that.
Suddenly, he noticed there were two eyes of the wood staring right at him, and the wood spoke to him angrily: "Curse you! Curse you for defiling my body!" Unbeknownst to this young man, he had picked up a Shaman's walking staff. This piece of wood was enchanted and could talk!
"From now on, every person you look in the eyes will die an instant death!" cursed the wood.
The young man dropped the wood he was so busily working on just a minute ago, and ran back to his village.
There, he found a wooden bucket by the well, and he hurriedly put it on his head. From then on, and for many years afterwards until he was no longer a young man, he had the bucket on his head to protect others from his cursed gaze.
For years, when he spoke to others in his village and to those he met in his travels, he would only looked at their feet. He felt sad and lonely, even though people were kind to him and still spoke to him. He was gladdened, however, that no one had died yet from his gaze.
Then, one day, as he was sitting outside his home, gazing on the ground, he noticed a pair of finely covered feet approached him. He knew that the owner of these feet was not from his village for they were usually bare-footed.
"I am your King," said a regal voice. "I was told in my dream that if I find a man with a bucket on his head, and have him look at my eyes, I shall be healed."
The man didn't know quite what to do. He didn't want to disobey his King for fear of his life for he had heard that to disobey a King's order bore the penalty of death. On the other hand, he felt quite sure that the King would die an instant death if he took off his bucket and looked at the King in the eyes. "What am I to do?" he asked himself in confusion.
At this part, I woke up. So , I suppose this is where we each get to see what medicine this could be for us. How have you limit yourself? What do you believe now that is limiting you? Will you honor your inner King's request to heal yourself? Will you take the plunge and look at your Spirit in the eye? Will you trust yourself enough to accept the challenge to heal your soul?
I wrote the above dream-story in March 2005. In November 2007, I read an article, "Dreaming the Secret Wishes of the Soul" by Robert Moss. I was so moved by his article, I sent him my dream-story to hear his thoughts about it.
"What a great dream story! If it were my dream, instead of psychologizing over it, I would want to expand the narrative, give it a great ending, and try to get it published somewhere. It has the just-so-ness of the best dream-guided writing."
Since then, following his wonderful idea, I have come back to this dream many times and have been exploring different great endings for it. One of these days, I might just publish it with my favorite new ending.
You can find out more about Robert Moss at www.mossdreams.com