DREAMWORK SUMMIT: Unveiling, Exploring and Living the Messages from Your Soul

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FREE Online Event
The Dreamwork Summit
November 13-16, 2018

What if you could access all the wisdom you need for living a happier, healthier, more fulfilling life… from your nighttime dreams?

Imagine if your dreamtime could provide you with the necessary insights to integrate your soul’s deep knowledge and create the life you desire.

Well… it actually does.

Paying attention to your dreams and deciphering the messages living in the images, symbols, characters, and landscapes that appear can be a magical experience. And today, anyone can practice dreamwork… and reap its many benefits.

Some dreamers find themselves visiting other realms — even past or parallel lives —  which help to inform and move you through blindspots and places where you get stuck in this present life. Clarity, healing, passion, and ultimate purpose are accessible to you through the messages of your dreams, this is why .I’m excited to invite you to join me for The Dreamwork Summit where a global gathering of leading dreamwork experts, renowned psychology professionals, and inspiring authors — including Robert Moss, Jean Shinoda-Bolen, Sandra Ingerman, Lynne McTaggart, Grandmother Flordemayo, Toko-pa Turner,Andrew Holecek, myself, and others — will be sharing a unique variety of dreamwork approaches and ways to open to your inner guidance.

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I’m honored to be among 20+ leading teachers in this first-ever Dreamwork Summit, sharing insights from my own experience and practice of Archetypal Dreamwork that have helped to heal, transform, enliven and expand my life.

I hope you will join me for this groundbreaking four-day online gathering presented by The Shift Network.

To attend the summit, RSVP here for The Dreamwork Summit — at no charge:

https://shiftnetwork.infusionsoft.com/go/dws18a18706/a18706

Now journey home!

With Love,

Cheptu

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Beginnings

It’s my birthday,1989, the eve before the final decree of dissolution of my 9-year, 201-day marriage. I didn’t know it was going to be this hard. We separated a year ago, but as the hour gets closer all my defense mechanisms are breaking. I’ve put my 6-year-old son to bed. He’s asked me one more time, “Are you sure it’s not my fault that Dad left?” No, no, no son. You did nothing wrong. It’s Daddy and Mommy…we had problems with each other that we couldn’t solve. I’m so sorry about how you feel, but it’s not true, don’t believe it. We both love you very much.

In my bed I feel so alone. All night I toss and turn in anguish over the grief, the pain, the humiliation, the loss. I heave into my pillow releasing a torrent of tears. I’m up and down all night. I pray. I read my Bible. I beg for peace. I can’t believe it’s over. Please, God, don’t let me hear the judge’s final decree without knowing that I was truly loved, even if just for a short while. Where are you, God. Do even you love me?” I’m overwhelmed with the feeling of utter rejection and abandonment. My eyes now puffy, red and dry as there are no more tears. My lyrical soprano voice now husky and raw. My utter brokenness ushering me into the chasm of deep sleep. “DIDN’T I SAY I WOULD TAKE CARE OF IT!?” An impetuous basso voice, 15 octaves below the deepest, jolts me out of sleep into sitting position. I’m terrified believing that someone is in my room. PHEW!…I must have been dreaming! I am thankful as my pounding heart calms and I sink into peaceful sleep until the morning comes.

The divorce hearing takes place. I’m fatigued, but surprisingly feel grounded inside. Soon after the divorce, the dreams begin to pour in night after night…I suppose my heart is more open and less defended, so the messaging can through. I don’t know what to do with these dreams except interpret them from my wounded ego. The dreams become more difficult to decipher, so I finally just leave them alone, but I continue writing them…each and every time, as soon as I’m aware that I’m dreaming, I record in my journal and go back to sleep. Somewhere along the way I instinctively begin to index my dreams…it becomes a ritual practice five times a year…on New Year’s Day, Spring Equinox, Summer Solstice, Fall Equinox, and Winter Solstice. I log the dreams from my journal onto my computer: date, time, central themes and figures. One day I have a particularly troublesome dream. It grips me in my gut as I ask, is this a déjà vu? Have I dreamed this before? I open my computer and search my index, only to discover that I’ve had the identical dream, recorded three consecutive years, on the same date, at the same time. I fly into counseling! I’m blessed to find a wonderful father-like figure, a highly regarded psychotherapist and pastoral counselor who is also a shaman…his name was Mwalimu Imara. One day during a session I ask, “Can dreams heal?” He bellows in his booming basso, like the voice in my inaugural dream, “Hell yes!” His answer propels me on my personal journey to discover the healing power of dreams.

Mwalimu helps me tremendously from his Gestalt perspective and I’m always bringing him my dreams. While admitting that dreamwork is not his forte, he urges me to learn as much as I can, to explore the gift I have been given to its very end. I continue to work with him and begin to search for dreamworkers to no avail. Everyone says, “Your dreams are very rich…you have something, a calling…it’s rich, but I’m not the best fit for you.” I’m going from person to person, place to place. I begin to self-study, spending a lot of money on books and workshops. I enroll in seminary and after seven years of wandering through almost every concentration available, I finally settle on psychology of religion and pastoral care. It comes a little close to my interest. I move to New York to further engage in Clinical Pastoral Education at a prestigious hospital and school of medicine. I enroll in and eventually drop out of a unique experientially based doctoral program in San Francisco. I drop out and decide, no more formal education!  I travel abroad to experience various traditional cultures and search for their understanding of dreamwork as a form of healing. I begin researching my family genealogy and work with traditional African spiritualists to get a sense of who I am and who I come from, and what in the world is driving me.

My colleagues, family and friends are asking me why I’m not doing more with my ministry, with “ALL of your qualifications.” It’s a parched, seemingly endless circuitous journey through my dream life. I can’t put my finger on exactly what I’m wanting. I’m learning new and interesting things, but I’m having difficulty landing.

I have more powerful dreams and can feel there’s something sacredly important about them, but I’m afraid to open another dream book or do another internet search. Finally, I vow to surrender my quest and let the answers find me. Then one day after a long spell (1-2 years) of not reading any books or searching on the web for information about dreams, I fortuitously stumble upon a website called North of Eden (NOE) Center for Archetypal Dreamwork. I submit a dream, wondering if someone will really respond as they promise. Holy Cow, someone responds! The response is other-wordly…different than I have ever experienced, and it speaks directly to my life, both inner and outer. It resonates with something deeply inside of me. Maybe that’s just luck. Skeptic, as I am, I create a new name and a different email address and submit a second dream. OMG, the response is equally moving. I know I have found something. I begin working with one of the analysts, Christa, who is the Co-Founder. We work via phone…the process is miraculous as it reveals things that resonate deeply, yet they have been hidden from conscious awareness. Shortly afterwards, I attend my first retreat—in cold-Cold-COLD, lily white-White-WHITE Lowell, Vermont, less than 20 miles from the Canadian border. I’m the only person of color there, retreat after retreat. Look, God, I’m an African American from the South…are you playing some kind of cosmic trick on me? Over and over, I would question what in the world am I doing…what have I gotten myself into? I sometimes quiver at what my pro-African liberationist community would make of it. I never reconcile it in my mind, maybe there is nothing to be reconciled, because I know I’m connecting to a deep and sacred part of myself. Nothing can be said or done to stop me or become a stumbling block in my process of becoming. I know I am in the right place, at the right time, with the right people to help guide me to the next step.

Ashé

Musing on “The Wiz”

Yesterday was our production of “The Wiz, Our Way,” a musical production at a summer camp.  We added the “Our Way” because I adapted it from the original Broadway musical for very young children.  It was a success, and of all the productions I’ve ever directed, this one drew more creativity from me than I have ever experienced. There were many ingenious moments, which was fulfilling to see come to fruition in the final production. I say “ingenious” because as I was writing and planning the production, I was aware that I was tapping into the creativity of the Divine realm. “The Wiz” is my favorite musical of all time because of the music and the story’s culturally hip re-telling of the classic, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” by L. Frank Baum. Ever since childhood I was always intrigued that the totality of Dorothy’s adventure was a dream, and with each year’s annual televised broadcast, I would discover new gems and truths in the story…I could never get enough of it!  And now that I’m a practitioner of Archetypal Dreamwork, I love it even more.

When I look at the story from an Archetypal perspective, I see a girl being raised by her Aunt and Uncle who is in some way dissatisfied with her life and sets herself on the path to self-discovery. How perfectly the storm (i.e., tornado) comes to help her confront the vicissitudes of her inner world. Storms such as tornadoes, hurricanes and tidal waves are powerful Archetypal forces that produce terror and fright in our dreams; yet they are great helping forces to help us confront and resolve our emotional quandaries if we can acknowledge our fear and allow ourselves to be subsumed by their power (requires fortitude and courage). A tornado’s column touches both the Heavens and the Earth…what an Archetypal figure for Dorothy!  In “The Wiz” Dorothy does not stand at a distance watching the tornado, nor does she manage to reach shelter (thanks to antics of her dog Toto), but rather allows herself to  be overtaken by it, house and all.

In Dorothy’s dream, Toto can be seen as the Archetypal Psychopomp, the guardian of one’s Soul, and accompanies the Soul’s journey to the underworld. According to ancient KMTic (Egyptian) mythology, Anubis is a jackal/dog-human who leads the Ba (aspect of a person activated in dream state) to the Underworld where the Ba undergoes its own purifying journey. Anubis reunites the person’s Ba with their core self–the “Heart”/Soul. Indeed, Oz is the Other World, the Underworld, where there is larger than life imagination, magic, power and intrigue and terror…an Archetypal place, because it carries all the keys…it’s the laboratory for Dorothy’s process of transformation.

In Oz, Dorothy journeys down the Yellow Brick Road where she encounters  aspects of herself she may have felt separated from–clear thinking (Scarecrow who didn’t have a brain); passion (Tin Man who didn’t have a heart); and courage (cowardly Lion). In Oz, she regathers those aspects of herself to encounter the Wiz and demand her return home. But first, she must defeat the Wicked Witch of the West, and you know how the story goes.

Each one of us has our own “Yellow Brick Road,” our path and true desire. Whatever the Yellow Brick Road is for you, and whatever “Home” is for you, approach it with singularity in purpose, like Dorothy…and submit to whatever it takes to get there. Follow where the road leads and leave no stone unturned. This may mean that you have to surrender to the scary but powerful Divine forces in you that are there for your good. Let the tidal wave overtake you–you may discover that you can breathe underwater! Let the tornado sweep you into its fold. In the Yoruba pantheon, Oya (“She who tore”) symbolized by the powerful Winds is the deity of transformation and change, both inner and outer. When Archetypal forces come to you in a dream, feel your awe-filled fear, and know that those forces are a part of the Divine realm within you. You are created in the image of the Divine and the Divine has ripped off a part of Him/Herself and placed it in you. You have a direct connection to that power and your dreams will remind you, when it’s needed. I have heard it said, “If don’t have dreams that induce your fear, then you’re not living big enough.” Watch when those forces come; pay attention to the ways you try to manage them, or manage your fear of them. Let go…surrender!

In Dorothy’s dream, the Wiz can be seen as an Animus Provocateur. In Archetypal Dreamwork we define the Animus as a male-figure who represents the male aspect of the Divine, whose role is instructive and supportive. In the story, the Wiz is a bit of a trickster. In her dream the Wiz/Animus doesn’t immediately grant her wish to go home, but instead, instructs her to kill Evilene, the Wicked Witch of the West. Maybe there is some dark energy in Dorothy’s psyche that she needs to deal with, to be cleansed of before she can go “home.” We all have shadow material, blind spots, misperceptions and beliefs that rule our lives and feed our doubts and fears. Yes, killing and death is essential to transformation. Remembering that every part of a dream is an aspect of ourselves, our dreams will show us the parts of ourselves that need to die, or that we must die to…whatever is the thing that keeps you separated from your authentic core or Essential Self.  Are you oppressed by anger because you have not acknowledged your pain or loss? Do you place yourself on a false pedestal or judge and condemn others to disguise feelings of your own inadequacy or inferiority?  Do you employ false pride in order to cover your shame? Is your authentic joy and your authentic power buried underneath other compensatory feelings?  Your dreams will guide you, help you to confront the parts of you that need to die.

From an Archeytpal perspective, Evilene’s death in “The Wiz” is the most critical and penultimate moment of the story. No one can kill off the evil witch for Dorothy, she would have to do it herself, for herself, with the support of the supportive Archetypes around her (Scarecrow, Lion, Tin Man, Toto). In the story, Dorothy triumphantly takes to the Wiz proof that she has killed off the dark energy (Evilene), and in comes Glinda the Good Witch, as the Anima (archetype representing the healing feminine aspect of the Divine), who delivers the healing medicine…that Dorothy’s power to go home resided in her…that she had it all along. There is a new Dorothy, restored to her true self who knows her power, creativity, courage, and passion…and she no longer needs to believe the lie that others have it, but she can’t have it for herself. She can now return home with more focus and appreciation for all that she has, all that she is, and more.

My own journey is a process of rediscovering and reclaiming my creative power, passion and libido. I had them all along, and bursts of it have been evident throughout my life, despite my own limitations. But now, things are opening up in a grander way as I have been bitten and exorcised by the handiwork of the Divine. In the past, the unknown has provoked anxiety to which I responded to with aloofness or controlling and managing; but now the unknown energizes me because of its expanded possibilities and I am now convinced, in a more heartfelt way, of the Divine’s empowerment in me.

Like Dorothy, I am journeying Home.

 

 

 

 

 

Night Time in the Fire Circle

          Dream:  It’s night time at a fire circle where a woman is being inititated. I’m in the center of the circle with her. My late esteemed and beloved professor, Dr. H, is officiating. I lower myself to the ground in prostrate position and scrub my face with the soil. Nearby is a bucket of water—I  pour it entirely over my head.  A large circle of shadowed Black figures hold hands and circle around me in counter-clockwise motion. Two muscular men wearing bright spandex body suits leap synchronistically across the circle, pausing in mid-air each with each leap. Electrical sparks discharge from their leaps.  Suddenly I’m running—I don’t remember where or why—and  Dr. H says, “Cheptu, take care of Your Son.”

In my dream I am tricked into believing that the initiation is for someone else, but the dream overwrites my psyche, and I become the one being initiated. This is how I have lived most of my life:  gifted with talent, intelligence and charisma in a circle of heartfelt karmic support, yet somehow missing that the party is for me. Trauma and shame supplanted my natural sparkle and the desires of my heart. I settled for a life that was “safe,” but lacking passion.  In my dream, Dr. H stands in the role of the Animus, the male aspect of the Divine; and the son for whom he is concerned is my Soul Boy – the “I Am That I Am” – in all his libido, passion, creativity and power embodied by the leaping men.

In the circle I am exfoliating old, dead skin and being initiated into a new life as the Girl with the freedom of her innocence and the power of her vulnerability.  However, in the circle I can also feel the tension between Divine “sparkiness” and my fear . . . yes, it’s a lot to take in.

          Dream:  I’m teaching music to a class of unruly children who refuse to follow my directions.  I am utterly frustrated—my voice hurting from over-talking, yelling,  cajoling, defending.  I’m tired of the struggle. I’m losing control.

My Soul Boy rebels against being silenced, managed and controlled. I am a great teacher, but in my heart I wanted to be the one on stage performing in music and drama. I regret how I “unlived” much of my life hiding behind “the teacher,” one of the ways I managed my Boy.  I regret what I lost by organizing my circumstances and relationships so that I could never feel or be perceived as powerless or vulnerable.  I was outwardly competent with intolerance for the unknown realm of feelings—I’d run away, first.  I regret the walls I put up to keep from being truly known, even seen.  I’m thankful for the gift of having grown tired of it.

           Dream:  I’m with a man on a long-awaited date to the Opera. I’m feeling very comfortable and enjoying his company. Suddenly he’s yelling expletives about a mother who “beat the crap out of [him] as a child.”

The Animus voices the rage of my Soul Child who knows the truth of abuse and trauma. He curses the Dark Mother energy who took rampage through my psyche, colonized my soul and squelched the opportunities when real joy came into my life. No wonder it was difficult to maintain focus on my passion, because in order to have my passion I would have to deal with scary emotions . . . easier to keep it all stuffed down . . . manage and control the children.  Never sweat. Be ever-vigilant so no one can see my wounds.  The Animus wants me to move on with my life. He shows me that expelling the rage releases the libido.

Through Archetypal Dreamwork I have made alchemical descents through several layers of trauma with the loving support and presence of the Archetypes.  With each new round I experience the kundalini release of once frozen libidinal places and I get to reclaim more of my Soul Boy.

           Dream:   I’m with my students at a library. A woman takes me to another facility that houses an Occupational Therapy Department and a large theatrical space. We pass by a strikingly beautiful young woman whose blue-black skin is dusted with gold powder that makes her gleam. She’s draped in translucent gold lamé fabric; her breasts fully exposed.

The Anima is the female aspect of the Divine. She heals shame. In my dream she redirects me to the “healing theatre” so that I may see what’s possible—the transcendent woman in me, radiant in her sensuality and wholeness.  Fully exposed and she has no shame.  Truly, the past is the past.

          Dream:   I’m outdoors in an ancestral village sitting next to a Pygmy woman.  Something about her draws me— something about her that I understand—maybe her pain. The woman raises her arm towards me, exposing the razor she’s carrying. I grab and immobilize her hand until she drops the blade.

The Pygmy woman provokes me to come to her.  She teaches me that my heart can know her pain because I can now feel my own pain. She holds the story of her tribe—the glory, the suffering and holocaustic loss.  People “cut” when they have unacknowledged pain, however it’s only when we have opened ourselves to our own deepest pain that we can sit with others in their deepest wounding and not run away.   Extraordinary things happen when we heal from our pain . . .  I am becoming the Warrior Woman, the Tribal Healer.

          Dream Reprise:  . . . .  and Dr. H says, “Cheptu, take care of Your Son.”

I get to have it all:  Divine empowerment, love and support; my Soul Boy energy that’s pure and alive; the Soul Girl who knows her desire and longing, and can be in intimate relationship with God; the Warrior Woman; the support of the Archetypes and my Ancestors. There are times that my trauma gets re-triggered, and each time it’s easier to discern that which is dust from the past that I need not react to, project, or internalize.  Each day I dance more freely with the Divine and step further into my new life as a “Soul Theatre” Healer, Vocalist and Songwriter . . .  in my new skin.

 “OPEN MY HEART”

Open my heart to see all your beauty

Open my heart to your power within me

Where’er I go

You know who I am

All the world and heaven await me

If I can stay in my vulnerability

Be with me forevermore and a day

Help me to stay

Help me to stay

Open my heart

Help me stay

Open my heart

Help me to stay

Help me to stay.

©Grace Cheptu, 2012.  All rights reserved.

Welcome

My name is Cheptu. Welcome to my revived blog, NOW Journey Home.

Have you had a jarring dream that left an indelible imprint that there’s something more for you to know? Such dreams arise from the Archetypal realm, your inner mystic connected to the Most High and the collective unconscious of all humanity. I want to share with you my passion about Archetypal Dreamwork and my own personal healing journey from disconnection, aloofness, pride and shame back “home” to my passionate and enlivened heart…my vintage radiance, power and vulnerability. I made it through the excavation tunnel and it’s so very beautiful on the other side!

Every one of us has our own unique path. Do you have an impasse, maybe you can’t quite put your finger on it, but you know that it runs and wreaks havoc in your life? Paying attention to your dreams will help unlock those hidden places and I want show you how. Through my blog I hope to inspire you and challenge you to trust the imprint of the inner Divine in you that knows what it knows and is always in service to your ultimate happiness, wellness and peace of mind. An old gospel song is popping in as I’m writing, so I will share it:

The Storm is Passing Over

Courage, my soul, and let us journey on

Though the night is dark and I am far from home

Thanks be to God, the morning light appears

The storm is passing over

The storm is passing over

The storm is passing over, hallelu!

Have faith and be encouraged. NOW, let’s JOURNEY HOME!