I just had a dream in which Geshe-la explained to me how the eight dissolutions work. I write my dreams down so I don’t forget and in case they prove beneficial to others. When we die or during completion stage meditations, our inner winds gather into our central channel at our heart. As they gradually do so, we perceive eight different appearances.
In the dream, Geshe-la was quietly seated off on the side while all sorts of other activities were going on and there was lots of noise as people were talking or doing whatever. I was seated there paying attention to all these other activities and didn’t really notice Geshe-la there. But then somehow he got my attention and was asking when something happened during the eight dissolutions, so I started speaking with him about it and I would guess thinking I knew the answer to his question but not sure, “during the smoke-like appearance?” and he would say, “no, no,” and then I would guess feeling like I was getting closer to an answer, “during the sparkling fire-flies like appearance?” And he said, “no, no,” but he was getting more excited. And then I said, “when the wind element wind dissolves?” And he said, “almost!” And then it clicked, “ah, during the transition between the candle-flame like appearance and the white appearance, and he said all excited, “YES!”
He then called me over to him so he could show me. He then was showing me these very tiny boxes like Russian dolls, with one inside the other. They were floating in space going downwards, and he showed how when we transitioned from one appearance to another as the winds dissolved, it was like a rocket shedding its booster rocket where it left behind one of the bigger boxes and one of the smaller boxes emerged out from within it (but it was moving downwards at an angle, not upwards). When one of the smaller boxes emerged out from within a larger box, it would release a new powerful appearance as the next appearance. It was understood that a new smaller box would be released when all of the previous wind was absorbed, and as the new box (which was felt to be ourself at increasingly subtle levels) emerged, it would release the appearance.
Then he drew me really close looking at the boxes and he showed me what happened when we made the transition from candle-flame like appearance to white appearance: no new box came out, but we nonetheless emerged like a phantom box that had no form whatsoever and when we did it released the white appearance, and then Geshe-la said almost like some cool teen would, “it’s A-MAZING!!!” And then he started laughing all happy. (Note, it is when we make this transition that we enter what is called “the four empties” of white appearance, red increase, black near attainment, and then clear light).
He then said, “it is like this,” and he folded some scripture he was writing in half to write on the back what he wanted to explain, but he didn’t have something hard to write on. So I said, “oh, I’ll go get something hard to write on,” and I went and found some coffee table picture book and brought it over to him, he put the scripture paper on the book and was about to write, and then I woke up.
I then thought, “woah, I need to go write that down in my blog,” but I then fell back asleep.
I was then in the dorm at a festival and I had to go take a shower. I went into the shower room, which was in this wood cabin type place, and I turned the water on and at first it came out strong, but then only a trickle. I then looked for something to hook the shower head on, but it wasn’t the right fit, but finally I got it to hold, but then the water basically dried up. I then put on my towel to go tell somebody and I ran into some friends who were in an adjacent room in the cabin. They had also just showered and were in their towels.
One of the friends then offering to help out, “do you all need another night?” And I said, “oh, that would be great, our single room just ran out” accepting their offer, and then she said in all sincerity, “here, you can use this ring to secure another night,” and she gave me this really ugly, gaudy, gold speckled ring that I could use like something somebody could hold as collateral securing the room for the night. She then showed me her whole collection of similarly gaudy ostentatious jewelry. I remember looking at the ring and thinking, “nobody is going to want this, this is worthless,” even though financially it was no doubt worth a lot, I couldn’t imagine anybody who could offer me a room would want this.
I then woke up again and realized the two dreams were connected, so I came to write this.
What does this all mean to me? In the first dream, I was paying attention to all the noise and clammer of activities in the room and not Geshe-la off to the side in the corner quietly writing scriptures, a metaphor of my life paying attention to the noise of appearance and not the quiet of my guru writing Dharma. My guessing was me thinking I know things and blurting out answers as if I knew, and while my answers I was blurting out were wrong, they were gradually moving in the right direction. This is like me and my social media presence and blog, writing things like I know what I am saying, and what I am saying is not quite right, but nonetheless gradually moving in the right direction.
Geshe-la was trying to explain to me how the eight dissolutions work, a subject that I have really been focusing on trying to understand for about 18 months now. Geshe-la showed me the mechanism where when one wind element dissolved completely, it would release the next box of us at a smaller, more subtle level, and when the box was released, it would release this powerful light of the next appearance. But in particular, the most important one I needed to understand was when the wind supporting the candle-flame like appearance dissolved and I made the transition to white appearance – entering the four empties. Here, there was no form that emerged, just the sky-like empty formlessness. I understood this to mean formless in the sense of the mind is clarity, without form. It is also at this stage that we transition from gross to subtle minds, leaving our gross minds completely behind.
Geshe-la then wanted to write something down for me of what the next thing I needed to understand, but there was no foundation in my mind to understand it (symbolized by the search for something hard to write on), meaning I lacked the experience to understand the next level. My then showing up at a festival indicated to me that I need more teachings, in particular at festivals – something I haven’t been able to physically for a long time. My going for a shower meant to me I needed to purify, but the lack of water coming out was understood to mean a lack of merit. It was my last day at the festival and my friends offered me another night. The fact that we were all basically naked bud didn’t care indicated for me I need to basically almost completely leave behind my sexual attachment to understand what comes next. But they did so offering me some really expensive piece of jewelry from their vast collection of similar jewelry, but this was understood to be worthless. This meant to me how I have been using up my merit on worthless external things which is of no value to those who can enable me to stay another night to receive the teachings I need.
All of these are powerful teachings for me.
One thought on “Dream with Geshe-la Explaining the Eight Dissolutions”
Thankyou so much for sharing your dreams. I think you must be very fortunate, I feel fortunate to be reading this. I hope you will take your self to the next teaching or festival xxxxx