Temple Mount

The following dream interview is an example of how personal dreamwork can reframe political, social, and cultural realities in ways that make one stop and look at ancient problems in new ways.

I am on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.  The Israelis have just attacked it and very quickly and efficiently wiped out the Palestinian defenders.  There are concrete and metal gun supports on the pavement, but that is all that remains.  Maybe some places where the blood stains have been washed off but still leave some traces.

Associations: Dunno.  Haven’t been thinking about this topic recently.  I am a long-time opponent of Zionism and Israeli nationalism.  Nationalism is a disease; when you mix it with religion, you get psychopathological radicalism and intolerance, whether it’s Jewish, Islamic, or Christian.  I went to the Temple Mount when I was thirteen, interested in archaeology and many concepts from the Edgar Cayce readings: reincarnation, psychic phenomena, the healer within, dreams, meditation, and “Christ Consciousness,” or a universal sense of salvation through love.

Integral Deep Listening uses the naming of three life issues as a way to anchor the perspectives disclosed in an interview with what matters in your everyday life. In this case it ties macrocosmic political and religious themes to microcosmic personal scripting, cognitive distortions, and development. For this interview the issues were “Taking my practice of waking up to the next level, doing a better job of following self-aspect recommendations, and remembering to frame the moment in terms of abundance, cosmic humor, and luminosity.”

I chose to interview the Temple Mount, which is highly symbolic to humanity because it is the birthplace of Judaism and Christianity, as well as extremely important for Islam. Therefore it represents both the conflict among these traditions as well as their integration. The Temple Mount said, “I have been here a long time.  Stupid people have built a lot of stupid structures on me.  They have done a lot of stupid things on me.  They have fought stupidly over me.  They have killed each other for stupid reasons on top of me.

Wooo, Temple Mount!  You seem just a little judgmental!

“What do I care whether you think I’m judgmental or not?  Don’t ask my opinion if you don’t want to hear it. I like that I signify man’s search for transcendent meaning in his life.  I like that I’ve survived all this stupidity all these millennia. There’s nothing I dislike about myself.  I could say I don’t like what’s happening on me, but if it has to happen, if there has to be some place that people have to kill each other in the Name of the Sacred, I guess it might as well be me. I personify the underlying ground of reality beneath drama: personal, political, social, cultural.”

If the Temple Mount could change, would it? “I don’t think so.  It is enough to be listened to, as I am now.  No one ever consults me to see what I think.  It’s all about them and what they do on me and what they don’t think should be done on me.  No one ever asks me MY opinion.  See, if I shook myself, for instance, to get their attention, they wouldn’t get the wake-up call, just like they misinterpret everything else in their lives, from their dreams to the intentions of each other.  So no.  I would keep my form, but people would come to me to interview me, not to fight over me or to tell me what I represent or to act stupid, which is mostly what they do.”

“On a scale of zero to ten I would score myself a ten in confidence because nothing is going to change me, regardless of how much or how little blood they spill on me.  I don’t have anything to be afraid of.”

“I score myself a nine in compassion because I’m compassionate enough to be me and do my job.  I provide a context, a space in which man can mostly learn who he is not and what doesn’t work. There are faster ways to grow; man could interview me.  Someday he’ll wake up and start doing that.”

“I score myself a nine in wisdom because I’m wise enough to not react to any of this.  I’m wise enough to know the difference between stupidity and ignorance.  What people do on me is mostly stupidity.  The information about what doesn’t work is out there.  They ignore it.  It’s not ignorance.  It’s stupidity.”

“I score myself a nine in acceptance. I probably sound judgmental to you.  Too bad.  I’m very accepting.”

I score myself nine in inner peace because I possess tons of it.  However, I am still able to send you a wake-up call in the form of this dream!”

“Of course I’m a ten in witnessing. What’s there not to witness?”

“If this dreamer (and people in general) scored in these six qualities like I do, which means that they would share my perspective on life, they “wouldn’t do drama. This dreamer would be way centered.  He would be a whole lot more powerful because he would know who he is and act like it. If I were him I wouldn’t be concerned about the stupid things that he does or that go on in his life.  So what? They come, they go!  Focus instead on waking up, and the best way to do that is to listen to me.  I am the Foundation of the Sacred. I personify the sacred that is obscured by the drama triangle.”

“I encourage him to just work at listening more.  Just work at applying in your life what you hear and learn.  Leave the results to themselves. He should become me whenever he finds himself in drama: fighting with himself or with life or with others.  Trying to rescue himself or someone else.  Being passive. I am in his life to wake him up, of course!” To keep from going back into the deep sleep of his psychological geocentrism he needs to do “more regular interviewing. Read them over.  Work at taking more recommendations to heart. The intention of this dream, this interview, and my point of view is to show him the stupidity of focusing on the conflicts in his life as if they were real or substantial.  Compared to me, they are neither.”

“He is presently at a place where he does not identify with internal conflict much, and it’s over quickly and relatively painlessly, but it’s still there.  I’m about taking that to the next level.  I’m about disidentifying totally with the natural and inevitable conflicts of life.”

The dreamer said that what he heard himself say was that “the sacred in me thinks the dramas that occupy my waking mind are stupid, because I know better.  That if I want to give them up, I need to become the Temple Mount part of myself. I need to make the dramas of life irrelevant in the context of the power and eternity of my actual beingness, which is life itself, without real identity.”

Applying this conclusion to the conflicts of the day, both personal and political, the recommendation is to stand back and grasp the situation from an overall context where the drama is not important. This is not to say it does not matter on the level of the drama, only that it is not simply ignorant but stupid to lose oneself within the drama. This is much easier said than done, which is why Integral Deep Listening is a yoga – an ongoing discipline of waking up and enlightenment. That means that deep listening has to be practiced daily, not only by doing or reading over interviews but by applying the recommendations from them and monitoring progress. For example, in this case, the most important recommendation to monitor would be, “How often today did I remember to take the perspective of Temple Mount when I realized I was enmeshed in drama?” “What was the result when I did?” This not only wakes me up out of psychological geocentrism but moves me from relative stupidity to relative wisdom by strengthening my ability to witness.

Notice that the Temple Mount speaks as a geographical location that does not have any investment in the politics, history, or religion that have taken place there. In this sense it personifies witnessing, one of the six core qualities Integral Deep Listening uses to help people wake up. Still, it likes the fact it symbolizes humans striving for transcendent meaning.  While the Temple Mount symbolizes all sorts of things to humans, those are our projections onto it. We are interested in what it thinks it represents, personifies, or symbolizes. What are its interpretations? It says, “I personify the underlying ground of reality beneath drama: personal, political, social, cultural.” This is again witnessing, in that it personifies context, or the framing that makes all personal, political, social, and cultural concerns possible. That is indeed a broad context!

The Temple Mount complains about psychological geocentrism, the way humans stay locked into looking at life from their habitual, distorted, delusional waking point of view. It wants its perspective to be considered! It thinks most of how people approach it is petty, short-sighted, and immersed in drama. It wants people to listen to it for a change! This is a very clear statement of a basic purpose of Integral Deep Listening, but done so not from the dreamer’s perspective or intention, but unprompted and unexpected from an unexpected source. While it is easy for psychodynamically oriented readers to think, “That’s just the dreamer’s real agenda talking,” that is a projection of the prejudices and interpretation of that individual. Instead of listening to the Temple Mount one is effectively saying, “But I know what this is really about.” That is exactly an example of the complaint that Temple Mount has just made: psychological geocentrism.

Temple Mount views listening to it as a short-cut to waking up for humanity: “I provide a context, a space in which man can mostly learn who he is not and what doesn’t work. There are faster ways to grow; man could interview me.  Someday he’ll wake up and start doing that.” It is is endorsing Integral Deep Listening as a compassionate way to develop witnessing and human development in general. From its perspective, humanity mostly learns by doing what doesn’t work, again and again. It views this as stupid, a value judgment in relation to ignorance, because this problem exists not because humans do not know better but because they refuse to use what they know. It strongly defends this value judgment as a clear and wise perception, not judgmentalism. It gives a very strong case for why its perspective is better than the dreamer’s habitual psychological geocentrism. It views itself, meaning its perspective, as an effective way to transcend enmeshment in personal and life drama. It is about not focusing on the conflicts of life, personal, political, social, or cultural, as if they were real or important. From the perspective of the purpose or meaning of life, they only exist as wake-up calls. But being awake and living is what life wants, not losing focus by becoming immersed in the drama of the wake-up calls themselves.

Notice that while the dreamer thought this dream was about “Religious Conflict and Integral Deep Listening,” the Temple Mount wasn’t interested in religion. From its perspective, religion doesn’t have anything to do with waking up, the sacred, or enlightenment. Neither do politics, culture, or personal issues. It argues that the sacred transcends and includes all of these, and if you want to understand and develop beyond enmenshment in the dramas they represent, you have to take a broader perspective. You learn to do that by taking perspectives that transcend and include these areas of life. You don’t have to do so all the time; only to learn to do so when you become enmeshed in drama to the point that you lose contact with life and its agenda for you.

What do you think?

Here is the transcript of the interview itself:

I am on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.  The Israelis have just attacked it and very quickly and efficiently wiped out the Palestinian defenders.  There are concrete and metal gun supports on the pavement, but that is all that remains.  Maybe some places where the blood stains have been washed off but still leave some traces.

Associations: Dunno.  Haven’t been thinking about this topic recently.  I am a long-time opponent of Zionism and Israeli nationalism.  Nationalism is a disease; when you mix it with religion, you get psychopathological radicalism and intolerance, whether it’s Jewish, Islamic, or Christian.  I have been to the Temple Mount, long ago.

What are three fundamental life issues that you are dealing with now in your life?

1.  Taking my practice of waking up to the next level.

2.  Doing a better job of following self-aspect recommendations.

3.  Remembering to frame the moment in terms of the Three Outcomes: prosperity, joy, and luminosity

If one character had something especially important to tell you, which would it be?

The Temple Mount

Temple Mount, would you please tell me about yourself and what you are doing?

I have been here a long time.  Stupid people have built a lot of stupid structures on me.  They have done a lot of stupid things on me.  They have fought stupidly over me.  They have killed each other for stupid reasons on top of me.

Wooo, Temple Mount!  You seem just a little judgmental!

What do I care whether you think I’m judgmental or not?  Don’t ask my opinion if you don’t want to hear it.

What do you like most about yourself? What are your strengths?

I like that I signify man’s search for transcendent meaning in his life.  I like that I’ve survived all this stupidity all these millenia.

What do you dislike most about yourself? Do you have weaknesses?  What are they?

There’s nothing I dislike about myself.  I could say I don’t like what’s happening on me, but if it has to happen, if there has to be some place that people have to kill each other in the Name of the Sacred, I guess it might as well be me.

Temple Mount, you are in this person’s life experience, correct?  They created you, right?  Temple Mount, what aspect of this person do you represent or most closely personify?

The underlying ground of reality beneath drama: personal, political, social, cultural.

Temple Mount if you could be anywhere you wanted to be and take any form you desired, would you change?  If so, how?

I don’t think so.  It is enough to be listened to, as I am now.  No one ever consults me to see what I think.  It’s all about them and what they do on me and what they don’t think should be done on me.  No one ever asks me MY opinion.  See, if I shook myself, for instance, to get their attention, they wouldn’t get the wake-up call, just like they misinterpret everything else in their lives, from their dreams to the intentions of each other.  So no.  I would keep my form, but people would come to me to interview me, not to fight over me or to tell me what I represent or to act stupid, which is mostly what they do.

Temple Mount, how would you score yourself 0-10, in confidence, compassion, wisdom, acceptance, peace of mind, and witnessing?  Why?

Confidence: 10 Nothing is going to change me, regardless of how much or how little blood they spill on me.  I don’t have anything to be afraid of.

Compassion: 9 Yeah.  I’m compassionate enough to be me and do my job.  I provide a context, a space in which man can mostly learn who he is not and what doesn’t work. There’s faster ways – man could interview me.  Someday he’ll wake up and start doing that.

Wisdom: 9 I’m wise enough to not react to any of this.  I’m wise enough to know the difference between stupidity and ignorance.  What people do on me is mostly stupidity.  The information about what doesn’t work is out there.  They ignore it.  It’s not ignorance.  It’s stupidity.

Acceptance: 9 I probably sound judgmental to you.  Too bad.  I’m very accepting.

Inner Peace: 9 Tons of it.  But still able to send you a wake-up call in the form of this dream!

Witnessing: 10 What’s there not to witness?

Temple Mount, if you scored tens in all six of these qualities, would you be different?  If so, how?

No, not really.

How would the life of the person who created you be different if he/she naturally scored high in all six of these qualities all the time?

He wouldn’t do drama. He’d be way centered.  He would be a whole lot more powerful because he would know who he is and act like it.

If you could live the life of the person who created you for him, how would you live it differently?

I wouldn’t be concerned about the stupid things that he does or that go on in his life.  So what? They come, they go!  Focus instead on waking up, and the best way to do that is to listen to me.  I am the Foundation of the Sacred.

Yeah, but not for everyone.  Just the three Western monotheisms.

I personify the sacred that is obscured by the drama triangle.

If you could live this person’s waking life for him today, would you handle his three life issues differently?  If so, how?

Just work at listening more.  Just work at applying in your life what you hear and learn.  Leave the results to themselves.

What three life issues would you focus on if you were in charge of his/her life?

The above.

In what life situations would it be most beneficial for this person to imagine that they are you and act as you would?

Whenever he finds himself in drama: fighting with himself or with life or with others.  Trying to rescue himself or someone else.  Being passive.

Why do you think that you are in this person’s life?
To wake him up, of course!

How is this person most likely to ignore what you are saying to them?

By not doing the above.

What would you recommend that they do about that?

More regular interviewing. Read them over.  Work at taking more recommendations to heart.

I think this person had this dream because

It shows him the stupidity of focusing on the conflicts in his life as if they were real or substantial.  Compared to me, they are neither.

I think this dream event happened or (some character) was in the dream because…

He is presently at a place where he does not identify with internal conflict much, and it’s over quickly and relatively painlessly, but it’s still there.  I’m about taking that to the next level.  I’m about disidentifying totally with the natural and inevitable conflicts of life.

What have you heard yourself say?

Hmmmm…that the sacred in me thinks the dramas that occupy my waking mind are stupid, because I know better.  That if I want to give them up, I need to become the Temple Mount part of myself.

If this experience were a wake-up call from your soul, what do you think it would be saying to you?

To make the dramas of life irrelevant in the context of the power and eternity of my actual beingness, which is life itself, without real identity.