Dreamed Nov? 1954 by Jack Kerouac
FOR THE FIRST TlME---dreamed I climbed a gradual cliff from slope to slope and got up on top and sat down but suddenly in looking down I saw it was not a gradual cliff at all but sheer----in the dream no thought of getting down on other side---in the dream as always in Highplaces Dreams I'm concerned with getting down the way I came, or rectifying my own mistakes----and even though I know it's a dream, within the dream I insist I must get down off the high cliff I climbed---the same old fear grips me in mortal throes---"But if it's a dream then the cliff is not real," I tell myself "so just wake up & the cliff will vanish"---l hardly believe it's possible, and, trembling, open my eyes & the dream is gone, the cliff is gone, the terror is gone---This is the Sign from Buddha's Compassion at last---
ln other words, for the first time I dreamed that I was on a high place & was afraid to get down but I knew it was a dream & something told me to wake up & the high place would disappear, & I opened my eyes & it was all gone
For a moment too I thought of jumping down to get down-----O pitiful reality! (but that would mean mortal pain, the falling, mortal horror, or, death)---
Also, in many other Highplace Dreams I knew it was a dream too, but insisted within the drearn on getting down----dream-activity in the dreamworld---dream-action down the dreamcliff---
The cliff seemed to be, and now the cliff doesnt seem to be---
Dream-analysis is only cause-and-condition explanation (such, as, cliff from symbol during waking day,like, murderer with knife because window left unlocked)---dream- analysis is only a measurement of the maya-like and has no value----dream-dispersion has the only value---Freudianism is a big stupid mistaken dealing with causes & conditions instead of the mysterious, essential, permanent reality of Mind Essence---(My only problem is how to practice the Eightfold Path day in, day out, as long as I dont live in solitude---) It's more than just the high cliff of the other-night's-reading-Dante,---it's the high cliff of mortal anxiety---
I posted this dream for two reasons.
And fear of death? If you weren't miserable before birth, why would you be after death? Unless you're a hellfire fundamentalist with a long criminal record, what's to fear? Fear is of and for the body. A useful sense! If you don't let it rule you.
Source: Book of Dreams by Jack Kerouac, expanded (2001) edition, City Lights Books, page 281-2. Date estimated from sequence.
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