When you dream, you are returning to the Home, the very womb of your Spirit and a world that speaks the language of your soul. Thomas Moore
I have lived in this house for ten years. My husband and I had it built. But I never knew it had a basement.
Then late one night I opened a mysterious door that I had never seen before and made my way down steps that I never knew had existed.
And found a basement.
In a space juxtaposed half above ground, half below, light and darkness and the glint of intricate chandeliers cast a sketchy spell over a room like an unwieldy checkerboard.
Elaborate draperies tumbled from the sky-high ceilings and fell in massive great heaps of abundant fabric on shiny, marble floors. Ornately woven tapestries adorned thick, darkly paneled walls.
A great rug covered the center of the expansive room and was crafted carefully, filled with many shapes and color, hand-stitched by a fine carpet master.
Shelves were laden with shiny gold bells, soft bears dressed in exquisite costumes and angels of all sizes dangling from their high perches keeping watch. The limbs of freshly cut giant firs were crammed with thousands of strings of light and beads and ornaments of all colors, sizes and shapes.
In the middle of the long, antique table stood three, almost real, soldier nutcrackers at least 8 feet high, each stepping busily in place.
Fireplaces were ablaze at both ends of the room and I felt warmth within me like that of returning home after a long, hard journey.
The dream has stayed with me for years and grown even more important as I have studied the work of the famous psychologist Carl Jung who believed that in dreams, a house represents our levels of consciousness and the ground floor or the basement represents our deepest and most often, undiscovered parts of our selves. Where we have to go, for example, to remember who we really are and to discover deeper meanings in our search for our life’s purpose.
The basement was decorated for Christmas – a time of sharing gifts. Yet I had not discovered this great gift for ten years.
I think of that splendor as a sparkling metaphor for personal gifts that we as human beings fail to recognize. What if we all have a basement full of treasure – talents and possible experiences that we miss because we don’t open the door? What if we each are endowed with a genius or a forte or a simple amazing smile given to us so we can help The Divine manifest Itself in our Universe?
What if we had the courage to open the basement door and discover our personal gifts? Gifts that we can impart to others. The gift of encouragement to a neighbor in need. The gift of baking for others to enjoy. The gift of writing. The gift of painting a tree adorned in autumn beauty.
This will all take work, of course, bringing those gifts up out of the basement to present to the world. And courage, too, to stop that inner editor who insists we have nothing worth sharing and replace her with a stronger voice that calls us to our full potential on a deeper level.
You know, I never intended to write a blog. Or to share my writing with others. But one day I gently stepped into the water. And then I begin to receive comments and encouragement from others. People who said it meant a lot to them. And I decided, if it only means something to one person, it is making a tiny difference in the Universe. So this small gift has been dragged out of the basement.
I hope it makes a difference to you. And maybe even inspires you to explore your basement.