Conversation with a Facilitator (Astral Plane)

AC 241: February 21, 2005 (Norfolk, VA)

Last night I saw a movie called Sideways for the first time, with George. I enjoyed the movie very much, even though both of the main male characters were thoroughly obnoxious.

My dream appeared to be taking a look at this movie from the soul’s perspective. The dream pointed out that the main characters were big self-absorbed babies concerned only with having their way and throwing tantrums when they couldn’t get what they wanted. They were fully immersed in life, but drowning because of their lack of spiritual awareness. Everything they reach for to bolster their sense of reality turns out to be empty, a product of our consumer culture, which has also produced the taste they have for it.

Old customs and conventions about how to treat people are sadly in disrepair, needful of renovation. No one is happy or treats himself or others with respect. Opportunism rules.

One old custom was to protect children from exposure to the seamier side of the adult world. In the dream, I found myself feeling sorry for Ariel and Laurel, Brian and Judy’s kids, for having to grow up in a world that no longer supports such a custom. I wondered whether they would be able to brave life’s ups and downs without falling into depression or succumbing to burnout.

Of course they have their parents, and to some extent me, to guide them. But it’s a long journey with so many ways to go wrong and so little support for spiritually appropriate ways of being in the world.

Our society forces kids to grow up way too quickly--and the media portray the adult world as so attractive that they want to grow up quickly. School restricts their options and time for play--and all the homework laid on them carries that lack of playtime into their home lives.

These are among the sources of young people’s depression. We’re paying for it with their early deaths from drugs, suicide, car accidents, and so on.

As I was thinking these thoughts, a Facilitator showed up, looking like a male park ranger. The Facilitator explained to me that the purpose of this lack of childhood is to turn everyone into nameless, faceless cogs within the consumer culture--making money, then spending it on buying things that bring no satisfaction. People caught in this cycle become more and more self-absorbed and angry.

With sadness, the Facilitator continued: “The destruction of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York was a part of a larger evolutionary process designed to call into question the American lifestyle and get people to begin making changes in it. The idea is to remind people that they’re on the planet to do the soul’s work of growth. When they do that work, they’ll feel satisfied in themselves in ways that will free them from anger, self-absorption, and the consumer culture. The key is to go after satisfaction rather than happiness.”