I had another memorable dream last night. There was a case of industrial espionage at Kraft Foods. Someone stole research Kraft was doing on the perfect salad dressing – low fat, low carbs, great taste, great texture. My dream was about all these people involved after the event talking about the implications of the theft and what should be done. It was like the TV crime shows, but no technology was on display and no one went anywhere to interview anyone. It was just like one of these plays where people stand around and talk, not something that would get a big audience on the big screen or TV.
It’s amazing how novel these dream people are, while at the same time conforming to every expectation I would have of such a scene on TV. Almost all of them are inventions of wherever dreams come from – brain/mind/wherever my extended consciousness reaches at night/whatever reaches into me. Occasionally recognizable celebrities or people I know from real life show up in my dreams, but mostly dream people are unique to whatever dream they populate, yet with unsurprising features. They don’t distract from the themes of the dream either by being strange or by being too familiar. They’re perfectly cast in their roles. Who does this?
It’s not hard for me to recognize themes in my dreams. This certainly is a time to dream about food. Crime shows are the rage. People talking are always the rage. Most intriguing to me is this theme of universality. It’s not just regarding strife at the dinner table with someone liking one food and hating another. It’s about all strife, and the perfect world to end all strife.
That won’t start with salad dressing, but it’s a symbol, you know. I know it is with me. I was not big on diversity as a kid. I was for unity, unity to fix my fractured family, unity to let me fit in with the other kids despite how different I was from them, unity like Malcolm X said Islam promised for him and me. I suppose Malcolm didn’t understand to whom he was talking on that one, nor was that his first mistake about which religion was best, but just because Islam isn’t the perfect religion doesn’t negate the attraction of whatever universal is the perfect religion.
Even as a kid I knew my attraction to there being one way to anything, one truth, one right way, was that then there would be a way for me. So I could imagine one politics and one religion in a utopian way instead of how totalitarian movements actually turn out. In real life, when someone says there’s one way, it’s always the wrong way. I suppose as a kid I hoped to find an exception to that, but I never have.
In all the politics, religions and ways to live I’ve seen, there is none I would follow exactly. There is a God I follow, one that Jesus led me to, but not in the same way as most who call themselves Christian. I’ve wondered about the fundamental truth of this. Is there one God for the universe? Are there many right ways to see that God or just many ways to see Him incorrectly, some worse than others? Perhaps there’s a different God for everyone, a testimony to our individual journeys leaving footprints on some generic Spirit.
In recent years, I quickly get an answer to such wondering. God says to me that while spirituality is a cooperative effort between individuals and Spirit, there is one universe and one God, like it or not. As with visions I’ve described before, the universe God means is much more than the 4-dimensional physical one we see either directly or through machines. The same God who helps me with the most mundane things exists far beyond everything I know, and I know a lot. God says so.
That’s where my dream went, from talk of universal salad dressing that would work for everyone to thoughts of greater universal things. My dreams are always so peaceful on these points while the world is so contentious. God tells me He can’t fix this. People will give up when they feel like it, when the Rapture never comes, when the Messiah never comes, when the 12th Iman never emerges, when the perfect religion finally becomes popular. I think it’s perfect to say that God is whoever and whatever God is, not who people say He is or isn’t, but there’s no enthusiasm for that beyond my attraction to that phrase.
People want power, more power than they can get in an individual life. They will settle for knowledge, love and goodness. Maybe they just want their own salad dressing, but I suspect it’s worse than that. People really believe in their opinions. I understand how often it’s a matter that everyone they trust believes as they do. Nothing inventive will change such people.
People need something real. They will settle for rituals and other things that pretend to be real, but will die when the last believer in them dies. The power that the real God gives is much weaker than what people have fantasized and requires a much longer time to master. So it is for God’s knowledge, love and goodness as well. But God’s things endure while fantasy dies with us. I guess that in 500 years we will understand this better. A better salad dressing will come sooner than that. Foods that counter the obesity epidemic will come. Technology and invention will fix the weaknesses that technology and invention unmasked about our nature.
There is one God, not someone who created a perfect world except for some rebellion, but someone who tells me that He is not the creator at all. He is the Helper, the one who can fill that God-shaped void in our brain with the power, knowledge, love and goodness it craves, but we also can fill it with all kinds of junk if we don’t care to wait for Him.
That is the universality I know works compared to all these that don’t. I remembered this much by the end of my dream, but everyone else was still doing what they do in real life. They stand around and talk. Then I woke up.