Archive for the 'synchronicity' Category
Yellowstone, the 44, the 111 & the Gen-X Vanguard

Glacier GroovesI’ve been haunted by 4:44 and 44 synchronicity since last spring.  In the fall, I wrote about how 44th birthdays approach for the people born during the rare era-defining Sixties Grand Opposition between Saturn/Chiron in Pisces and Uranus/Pluto in Virgo.  That alignment peaked in 1965 and 1966, so those birthdays are happening now.  This year marks the start of them, not to mention the start of the 44th presidency and 111th congress in the U.S.  All while slow-moving Uranus and Saturn have reversed their 1960’s positions and are now opposing each other again from opposite signs.  They came into perfect opposition on Election Day – a coincidence to say the least.   This fall, Pluto will join the dance to form a potent T-Square.  Turbulence now, much more ahead.

Previously, I wrote that the 44 and the 111 mark the doorway to a period of great change.  I definitely don’t mean that President Obama and the 111th Congress are agents of the change.  Instead, I think that the 44 and the 111 may be coordinates in time and space. 

I recently came across a suggestive item to add to the 44/111 synchronicity collection.  I’ve been watching seismic activity around volcanoes since the Tonga 7.9 earthquake and volcanic eruption.  I was looking into a minor earthquake around Yellowstone when I realized – the Yellowstone caldera is located roughly at 44°N 111°W.  

To have one of the world’s largest supervolcanoes sitting so close to those precise coordinates seems a bit portentous right about now.  But the last thing we need is to get sucked into fearful doomsday thinking.  We are living in a hot spot in history.  Bubbling under the surface is the potential for profound transformation, as well as profound destruction.  What we do matters.  Change does not have to be catastrophe.

Speaking of avoiding catastrophe, a prominent 44 turns up in the new Lexus RX commercial “Intersection.”  A car and an 18-wheeler come to the point of head on collision at a dark intersection, but time screeches to a halt just before impact.  Four guardian figures emerge from the darkness and pull the car and the truck backward through time.   One of the guardians turns the car driver’s head just enough so that he’ll see what’s approaching at the intersection.  A 44 appears on his windshield while the narrator speaks of “illuminat[ing] places you couldn’t see before.”  Time resumes forward motion and the driver swerves in time to avoid the truck and proceed safely on his way.

Unlike the Lexus driver, we will NOT be able to proceed on course after a brush with calamity.  Collectively, our present course IS disastrous — not just right now but going back several hundred years leading up to this point.  It will only get worse.  No swerving will get it safely back on track.  No illuminations or shining saviors will redeem it.  Our salvation will come from letting it go and making a new way founded on honest right relations — with ourselves, with each other, with other species, with the planet. 


The 44, the 111 and the Gen-X Vanguard

howlingcliffs.JPGI have to admit that I am fascinated by the fact that in January, the 111th Congress and the 44th President will take office in the U.S.  Numbers with repeating digits always grab my attention.  For me, 111 has the same kind of energy as 11:11.  As I wrote last time, eleven-elevens are the glow of lucidity poking through the dream fabric and therefore the number of awakening.  Forty-four is the number of a lamb, blood and “He Redeems.”  Thus I associate 44 and 4:44 with transfiguration.  I’ve been running into 44/4:44 a lot since the spring.  Together, these numbers seem to be pillars marking the entrance to a period of great change.  They seem to be vibrating with the call of destiny.

Meanwhile, 44th birthdays approach for the people who were born during the peak years of what astrologer Eric Francis described as the rare “Sixties grand opposition.”  This was the conjunction between Uranus and Pluto in Virgo, with Saturn and then undiscovered Chiron opposing from Pisces.  Peak years were 1965 and 1966, but Francis says the ripples of influence span from 1959 to 1973. 

In his three-part essay “Born in the Sixties,” Francis defines the powerful outer planet energies brought to a head in that grand opposition – they were the very energies firing the social and political movements of the time.  So the grand opposition had an obvious immediate effect in shaping that turbulent era, but it also shaped the natal charts of those born during it, mainly vanguard Gen-Xers.

So far, this latter effect has been mostly latent, I think, because many natives are having trouble with lower octave expressions of the potent energies involved.  Waylaid by FEAR (Saturn) and shadow projection (Pluto), distracted by our woundedness (Chiron) and technological toys (Uranus), this generation has yet to come into its own.  But maybe turning 44 in this period, with its new alignments, will be a turning point.

Meanwhile, what goes around comes around in the grand dance.  Uranus (freedom, revolution, sudden change) and Saturn (limits, structure, inertia) are opposing each other again, but this time their locations are reversed on the Virgo-Pisces axis.  And now Pluto (transformation) enters Capricorn (social structures) for a new era-defining transit.  

I am no expert, but these patterns are coming together in a way that seems portentous.  The stage is set.  The players are taking their positions.  Our social, political and economic structures are poised for a period of profound transformation.  Some will say hold onto your hats and fasten your seatbelts.  I am in the other camp – the one that is trying to let go of the shore.


P.S. – Too bad USA cancelled The 4,400.

P.P.S. – Still one off.

Happy 11:11

Strange things, these breadcrumbs in the path. To me, eleven-eleven experiences are a fat yellow highlighter marking the corresponding thought/person/place/thing with the glow of synchronicity. They are little winks that can communicate an infinite variety of things – or nothing – depending on context. I don’t try to pin down meaning. I pay attention and let it flow. Where it marks a clear doorway, I go in.

If reality is a waking dream, eleven-elevens are the neon glow of lucidity poking through the dream fabric.

A quick bit of googling reveals that many of us experience this phenomenon.  We are legion.  Sometimes I wonder if we are like the Final Five on Battlestar Galactica, who were “switched on” with a common code upon entering a certain zone in the galaxy.  For them it was a nebula.  For us it could be the point we are reaching in the Earth’s 26,000-year precessional cycle – a point in which the cross of the solstices and equinoxes is lining up with the plane of the galaxy.  These cyclic alignments in the Earth’s celestial dance were deemed so important by ancients the world over that they were marked with myth, monument, calendar and zodiac. 

We are approaching a galactic dawn of sorts and 11:11 is the time blinking at us on our internal alarm clocks.

But of course 11:11 is much more than a display on a digital clock.  Synchronous elevens manifest in myriad ways.  They are sometimes clever.  Sometimes sneaky.  Sometimes they hit you over the head.  If you follow them, they expand into a wide river of synchronicity.  I told the story of how it started for me here.

Perfect 11:11 Day reading is Paul Levy’s “Catching the Bug of Synchronicity” on Reality Sandwich. He writes:

Just like Jung, we can help each other catch the “bug” of synchronicity. We can co-operatively cultivate a net-work of allies who creatively collaborate in bringing forth the precious jewel of synchronicity. The archetypal field becomes greatly potentiated for synchronicities when we get “in sync” with other people who are also waking up to the synchronistic universe.

And let it be so.


Out of Sync: More Wage Slavery Angst

contribution.JPGLately the synchronicity stream has me awash in one-offs. I jolt awake at 4:43 and 3:44 and 4:45. My timestamps are 3:33:34 and 4:44:43. My electric toothbrush stops inexplicably at 2:21 minutes while I am still trying to brush. People inadvertently send me emails at exactly 1:10. The best was the QA test I received at work after I finished telling a friend I am always one off lately – the auto-generated title was “Sanity Test 11:10:10.”

I feel off. The perennial contradiction between my job and what I see as my true work in the world has me spiraling down. I hate that I spend most of my time and energy working for The Man. I hate the idea generally, and it only makes it worse that my job is absurd on every level.

It hurts my head to do my job. I don’t know how else to describe it. Work is an energetic river – I guess all activity is – and dipping into this particular river does violence to my mind and spirit.

It’s not that my job entails activities are in themselves difficult – far from it. But they are crude and inane – and far beyond one person in volume.

Ultimately, though, the work is fundamentally non-aligned. You could say that I work for the defenders of those who would put a spigot on air and force us to pay to breathe.

It’s painful to turn to that frequency.

To those of you in the same boat as me, I ask can we agree to stop this? Spending our days working for the wrong team in grossly mismanaged situations, banging our heads into walls, trying to accomplish nonsensical tasks given to us by bosses without a respective clue, doing the work of whole departments because they keep laying people off, driving long, harrowing commutes back to heavily mortgaged homes . . . By the time we’re home, we’re mentally and physically exhausted, but then there many household tasks that every good suburbanite must do. We’re just starting to feel human again when it’s time to go to sleep. Next thing we know, the alarm is ringing and we have to go back.

I don’t want to go back.

There is something else I long to do that I think would be a much more worthwhile contribution, but it doesn’t often pay a living. I’ve been trying to figure out a way, but the health care/health insurance issue is a stumper.

I may not have figured out an alternate route yet, but I do know we are all better than this. Our time, our will, our creative power should not be wasted and misused in this way. This is NOT who we are.

I really liked Charles Eisenstein’s post “Money: A New Beginning” on Reality Sandwich a while back. He captured the absurdity of the artificial scarcity that we are living in. He writes:

For indeed, we live in a world of fundamental abundance, a world where vast quantities of food, energy, and materials go to waste. Half the world starves while the other half wastes enough to feed the first half. In the Third World and our own ghettos, people lack food, shelter, and other basic necessities, but cannot afford to buy them. Other people would love to supply these necessities and do other meaningful work, but cannot because there is no money in it.

When paying work is meaningless at best and destructive at worst and when meaningful work doesn’t pay enough to sustain the worker, the system is obviously unsustainable.

“Contribution” image by my husband, used courtesy of a marriage license.

Synchronicity Streams & Bookish Dreams

As I’ve written before, I am one of those people who has a synchronistic relationship with 11:11. 11:11 was my original wake up call, and it continues to be sort of a master number for me. But 11:11 opened the door to a whole river of synchronicities that I swim most every day. All kinds of things can be synchronous. I keep my eye out and try to follow the strings when they occur. They are breadcrumbs marking the way.

Numbers other than elevens show up synchronistically in phases. They are a subtle line of communication between me and my higher self, or so I think anyway.

For a while I had sets of consecutive twos showing up all over the place. Then it was fives. Lately it has been consecutive fours. Fours all over the place. One of the more striking examples of this is that I keep jolting awake from a deep sleep and looking at the digital clock on the other side of the room at 4:44 a.m. exactly. It occurs so often that I now wake up my husband as a witness when it happens. All I need to say is: “4:44 AGAIN!”

The other night I woke up early on with anxiety about work. In desperation, I asked the universe to help me learn from and heal my job situation. I fell back asleep and hours later woke with a start. I sat up to check the clock on the other side of the bed. Sure enough, it was 4:44. I thought that my higher self was trying to tell me something about my work. I had the thought that fours mean transfiguration. Then I fell back asleep.

I dreamt I was in a bookstore café. The guy at the next table had Daniel Pinchbeck’s 2012 book in front of him. I commented on it, telling him I had read it and it was good, though actually I haven’t read it yet.

There was a young woman sitting at the table behind me. She had two books in front of her. I started a conversation with her and told her not to buy the books. I said I would check for them at home and give them to her if I had them.

The first book was Look Homeward Angel. I have never read this book. I have never intended to read this book. I haven’t even thought of it twice before now, though I’ve known of its existence.

The identity of the second book was unclear in the dream, but I left the young woman at the table thinking that I had to look at home for Thomas Wolfe and Robert Penn Warren, so perhaps the second book was All the King’s Men.

Okay, once again, I have not read All the King’s Men, nor have I read anything else by Robert Penn Warren. I have not felt the urge to. I knew of their existence – both book and author, but that’s it.

I woke up as I was leaving for home to go look for the books.

In the waking world, I went to work (ugh), where I googled the second two books and authors because their presence in the dream was odd to me. I learned that Thomas Wolfe set Look Homeward Angel in a thinly fictionalized version of his hometown — Asheville, North Carolina. I didn’t know Asheville existed until recently when it came up synchronistically in another context, so the dream connection got my attention. Then I learned that both Thomas Wolfe and Robert Penn Warren died on September 15th. I have no idea what significance this has, if any. It just makes me think I should visit Asheville, North Carolina. Perhaps on September 15th.

Have you checked out Asheville, North Carolina online? There is a website where someone makes the claim that if you’re into 2012, Asheville is the place for you.

Okay, maybe I am babbling. Then again, maybe not.

I will end this post with the following thought, which has nothing to do with anything else I’ve written . . .

I want to be able to say that I stand by what I perceive in the world.

That’s all for now.

Right Place & Earth Activation

Can people be keyed to particular places? As I indicated in LOVE vs. FEAR, I have been dreaming and — yes — obsessing about moving to Maine for many years. Does it mean anything? Is it escapism as my leftie friends used to suggest? Yes, Maine is overwhelmingly white and yes, there are precious few jobs there, but I feel its earth so deeply. It calls me from miles away. The weird thing is that I was saying I wanted to move there long before I visited. I am not sure why – I had no known connection to the place. But once I visited it was definitely love and I have gone back many times.

My husband and I have visited Mount Desert Island, particularly Acadia National Park, several times in September, our favorite time of year. We spent the trips hiking and I saw some people on those trails – people from all over – whom I had seen in previous years. It seemed to me that we were all being drawn back. For example, one year we met a man from Cleveland in the woods between Sieur de Monts and The Tarn. As I recall, we were going to do a Dorr Mountain hike we had never done before and he appeared to be coming back from it. We asked him if we were headed the right way. We talked for a few minutes, exchanged stories and tips on our favorite trails – he recommended the Canon Brook Trail – then went each went on our ways. The next year we were doing the Acadia/St. Sauveur loop when we ran into him again at the top of Acadia Mountain. This time he approached us for directions. He didn’t seem to recognize us, but I recognized him immediately. There was a vibration in the air – something was buzzing under the surface the whole time.

That was the week of the Equinox in 2004 – which was the last time we were in Maine. It was an especially interesting trip all around. The trails always have wisdom to teach me, but this time there was more. For one thing, hundreds of crickets were congregating around our motel room door and walkway every day we were there. This might freak some people out, but I love crickets so I welcomed them as friendly visitors and good omens. (Though we had to be very careful not to step on them, or crush them in the door, there were so many.)

On the morning of the Equinox itself, we visited a sacred boulder in the woods. Actually, this was our second pilgrimage to it. On the first the year before, I rather brashly asked it to relieve me of my nicotine addiction. Do you know what? That ancient and profoundly patient boulder did indeed take it away. I haven’t smoked or used any kind of nicotine substitute since – after 20 years of hardcore cigarette addiction.

Anyway, this second pilgrimage was more intense. On our way in, the forest was thick with a deep, rich primordial presence. I was leading and halfway in I saw a black bear cross our path about fifty feet ahead. The crossing was silent, from right to left, and the bear disappeared without a trace seconds after appearing. My husband didn’t see it, but he was behind me so he didn’t have a clear view. To be honest, it terrified me, but we continued on and the presence grew stronger. When we reached the boulder, I was disappointed to find someone already there. The stranger had managed to climb on top of the boulder and was doing a meditation – one hand on his heart and the other hand gesturing toward the top of Cadillac Mountain. I was self-conscious at first, but eventually my husband and I each did our own meditations at the base of the boulder while the stranger continued his on top. I had the sensation that my hands and head were dissolving into the rock, but nothing earth shattering happened. I felt love for the rock and kissed it.

Somehow I came away with realizations that became more clear on the trails in the next few days. I kept getting images of splits – split rocks, split trees, even Mount Desert Island itself is split. The message was that there was a split within me, and that I needed to align my WILL with my HEART in order to heal it.

On the last evening of our trip, we did something unusual for us – we drove to the top of Cadillac Mountain. Sunset was approaching and we wanted to say goodbye to the Island before going to dinner. We thought Cadillac Mountain would be a good place to do that since, as the highest point on the North Atlantic seaboard, it commands a grand view. Well, it just so happened that the Queen Mary II had just arrived in Bar Harbor for the first time ever. Who knew that this was a big deal? Everyone but us, apparently. The top of Cadillac was crawling with cruise ship oglers and TV news crews, in addition to the normal crowd of tourists.

The mood was not ideal for a spiritual experience. Nevertheless, something happened to me there.

The pink haze of the sky was fusing with the pink granite of the mountain – and all around there was an incredible pulsation. The energy was palpable – couldn’t everyone feel it? It was bubbling up through me and erupting out of my head, making me a fountain. There was a lump in my throat, a massive thickening in my chest and a charge running up my neck and spreading out and up across the back of my head. I felt overwhelming LOVE. I wanted to stay there forever.

After a while, my husband indicated that we should leave before the mass exodus. I could see he wasn’t having the same experience. I was having trouble talking. I mutely went along.

On our way back to the car, I was still bubbling over. I passed a little boy who was walking the other way hand in hand with his mother. He beamed at me and then bashfully turned his face into his mother’s side as he passed by. It seemed odd then I realized that he had reacted that way to me because I was beaming like a beacon at him. He was beaming back.

I returned home with such heightened sensitivity that I could no longer bear the negativity of my job. Going back to work was like jumping into a vat of acid. A few weeks later I had the Glowing Green Man dream. A few months later, I up and quit my job.

According to P. Chris Kaiser in The Chakra System of Mount Desert Island, “Cadillac Mountain is an activator mountain. . . . As the heart chakra on the island, it activates people’s hearts” (23). Kaiser relays how he had a shamanic encounter with a bear on Cadillac’s South Ridge Trail. The encounter culminated in a profound embrace. He suggests that others have had bear experiences on and around Cadillac Mountain, more than a simple sighting like mine. The boulder, he says, is the base chakra of the Mountain. He calls it “Wolfie” after his son.

After his amazing experience on the South Ridge Trail, Kaiser awoke in the night and transcribed what he felt was a transmission from Cadillac Mountain. Some highlights are as follows:

You are being awakened. You don’t know why you come, but you come to me. I am an activation point. I am activating the Earth and I am activating you. After you walk on me changes start to take place in your life. Little did you know, it was my energy that triggered the change. . . .

There are people arriving here now on the island who will be working with me and through me to activate the energies of the Earth just as their brothers, the Native Americans, did before them. There are those who can feel the energy vibration that I send out. . . .

As I am activated, in turn the Earth will be activated. My vibratory rate will not only become stronger, but it will be raised to a higher octave. I am one of many activation points on the Earth. . . .

Be open and receptive and I will fill you with my wisdom, for I have been here a long time. Wake up and become aware. You are capable of so much more. If you fail to listen you will be missing the opportunity of many lifetimes. Actually you are here now to take advantage of this opportunity. You chose to be here. (40-44)

So . . . here is my current dilemma: The urge to move to my Right Place in the World has been building within me for over a decade. I have been stuck on Maine as that Right Place, but various obstacles have kept it a ‘one day maybe’ and not a reality. In the meantime, we continue to live in a place and work in jobs that are sucking the life energy from us. In the last several months, the desire to move out of the toxic waters around us and into a like-minded community – sooner rather than later – has become so strong that we’re considering other places that might be more logistically feasible. In the fall, we started taking trips to scout out these places. More recently, this inner urge has received independent corroboration from various external sources that echo the call to form like-minded groups in preparation for the changes to come. For example, this extraordinary talk (second video) given by Andrew Smith, author of The Revolution of 2012, which I was introduced to by Kingsley Dennis’s equally extraordinary blog. Smith’s talk is what got me thinking that maybe evolving and surviving could be the same path. Up until then I was assuming that at the critical point, I would go to Cadillac Mountain and meditate, and probably be swept away by a colossal tsunami.

So, back to the dilemma . . . Is my long time obsession with moving to Maine an indication that Maine is my Right Place? Or was I keyed to Maine merely for activation? Where is our mutual Right Place, if not Maine? But what about my connection with Cadillac Mountain? Am I one of those keyed to working with it to activate the energies of the Earth? What does that entail? I want to fulfill my role – how do I do it? These may be crazy questions, but they are on my mind.

Meanwhile, synchronicities like the following give me pause: A couple years ago, I stumbled upon a novel – self-published, I think – wherein the heroine has my name (an uncommon name) and lives in Maine. She is on a grail quest – not the kind of grail quest that I am on, but a grail quest nonetheless. In the story, her friend is killed in a car accident at a specific intersection in Bucksport. I was in a car accident at that very intersection in Bucksport in September of 2001. Given that I have only traveled the intersection ten times at the most, this strikes me as a big coincidence.

Maybe the answer is obvious and it is only self-imposed limitation – FEAR – that keeps me from seeing it clearly and taking the necessary next step.

All Along the Watchtower

I’ve been quiet for a while because I seriously feel like I’ve fallen down the rabbit hole. I posted some entries trying to define my sense of what may be ahead for us on planet Earth as we careen toward 2012. Suddenly I am finding things that I’ve long been searching for. I am becoming aware of the greater chorus of voices saying similar things and much more. What is freaking me out is how often the same phrases and metaphors are used independently. It’s like we are tuned into the same frequency.

As I explore what’s out there, I am experiencing incredible synchronicities. They are piling up and accelerating and ushering me toward a door – a one-pointed focus. Before I was a dreamer struggling to maintain lucidity in the dream. Now I think I am awakening.

I think others are doing well in their research and commentary. I am trying to figure out where I fit into this – what is my contribution. My first response is always to go within. I need to take my sword of discernment – such that it is with all the first-house Pisces I’ve got going on – and sort through the new material that I’ve been absorbing. All I know now is I feel energized despite what’s on the horizon. I feel I have something important to work toward. We all do.


I can’t say that I know what it all means, but in honor of the day, here’s how it happened for me:

I was feeling profoundly restless. I was looking for something I could sense vaguely but didn’t understand. Mostly I was casting around in the dark, but I was trying to follow the chain of synchronicity that was just then returning to my life after many years of absence.

On September 11, 2002, I was driving home from work when I happened to look down at my odometer – not something I do often – and saw that it was showing all ones across. I thought it was a coincidence that my car should hit such a milestone on the first anniversary of 9/11 and that I should happen to look down just then to see it. Then my mind moved onto thoughts of the previous year.

Barely two hours later, my sister was telling me about her recent vacation when she mentioned that the friend she had visited was “into portals and the eleven-eleven.” Huh?!

It felt like there had been a radio playing a half-tuned station in the next room for a long time – just white noise to me – and then, in a flash, it tuned in and I registered it consciously.

“Wait, what is this eleven-eleven?”

My sister said it had to do with “ascension” and “portals.”

“Portals to where?”

She didn’t know. The idea of portals was tantalizing to me even though it made no sense. Now I know that there is a range of interpretation on 11:11, but then my ignorance was total . . .

“But why is it ‘eleven-eleven’?” I asked.

My sister explained that her friend sees elevens everywhere — the number comes up synchronistically for her. I had goosebumps. I told her about how I caught my odometer showing all ones across on the way home from work that very day. I said it was four ones – 1111 – because at the time that’s what I thought, but actually it was five – 11111 (shows how little I pay attention to my car’s mileage).

The odometer turning to all ones on that particular date . . . me noticing . . . then my sister mentioning “eleven-eleven.” There was a convergence of coincidences that felt powerfully synchronous to me. And that was the beginning. Elevens started turning up everywhere. Bill totals, receipts, license plates or signs on cars and trucks cutting me off, email time stamps . . . Odd little things — and some big things — started occurring at 11:11 to draw my attention to the clock at that moment. Some nights I found myself jolting from a deep sleep to look at the clock at exactly 11:11 p.m. Elevens were speaking a secret language to me through the random details of my life.

I did some googling and became familiar with various things people say about the phenomenon. I used to be more interested in reading these theories and speculations, but I’ve lost track of that research. I guess eleven-eleven was indeed a portal and it has led me to other mysteries.

Some say that 11:11 is a wake up call that we coded ourselves with prior to this incarnation. Maybe that’s true. It certainly worked as a wake up call of sorts for me. Whatever the case, I felt the onset was an invitation to the grail quest. I accepted and have been traveling that path ever since. I see the elevens in my life now as little breadcrumbs along the way.

On 11/11/04, at 11:11 PST, Uranus stationed direct in the sign of my Ascendant, Sun and Moon, beginning a long series of transits that are now lighting up my chart like a pinball machine. On 11/11/06, unbeknownst to me, something happened a few hundred miles away that ended up bringing a major crisis into my life for the winter and early spring. When I learned that it all started on November 11th, I knew that however bad it felt at the moment, it would somehow be a transformative experience. It would be a portal to the next level. And it was.

And as many have observed — per the U.S. Naval Observatory — the Winter Solstice will occur at exactly 11:11 UT on December 21, 2012 — which of course is the date posited by people like John Major Jenkins as the culmination of the Mayan Long Count.

I don’t have the answers, but in my experience, the elevens mark the doorway. Approached in a mindful, heart-centered manner, they can lead toward positive transformation. Let’s go through.

Threshold Guardians: The True Story of Falcon, Bear and Me

Last fall, I started having dreams about a black bear emerging from nowhere and coming after me. I would be terrified. I had seen a real black bear in the woods twice – once on my way to a sacred boulder in Maine a few years ago. I was afraid of bear attacks. Inevitably in the dreams, I tried to run and the bear chased me, grabbing my right shoulder from behind.

Meanwhile, little did I know that there was a monstrous thing lurking under the surface of my real life. It started making ominous noises the first weekend of December. By the middle of the month, it was howling and rattling the cellar door from below. Then, on the Solstice, I had the Falcon and the Bear dream.

From the moment I opened my eyes, I knew that this dream was a gift. I’ve always loved birds and felt a connection with hawks, but there was a falcon that used to frequent the window of my third floor office, back when I had an office and the “upwardly mobile” corporate job that came with it. I loved that falcon. His aerial displays outside my window reminded me that there was something true and meaningful to do out there in the world – away from the mind-numbing meetings and soul-sickening ethical compromises. So the dream bear’s apparent partnership with the falcon put the bear in a whole new light for me.

Through the winter, as the monstrous thing broke out of the cellar and tore through my life, I clung to this dream as if it were a coded map that could somehow show me the way out of the crisis.

One January afternoon, I was waiting for a train on a lonely suburban platform. I decided to make use of the ten minutes I had to wait in the cold by meditating on the dream. I closed my eyes, began my breathing and at a suitable point started to replay the dream. Instead of letting it end where it did, I visualized entering my old bedroom, where the falcon and the bear were holding court. I knelt before them and . . . for some reason unknown to me I opened my physical eyes and looked up to see a real live falcon flying low over my head on the platform! I am not kidding. It was not a hawk. It was a falcon.

Prior to this, I had not seen a falcon in life outside the one that frequented my old office window and a few up in Maine while I was on vacation. Hawks are a common sight in my area, but not falcons.

On another day soon after, I was listening to Rick Jarow’s The Ultimate Anti-Career Guide at work. He was using the seasonal cycle of a tree to illustrate the life cycle of all endeavors. At the end of each cycle, he said, was the bare tree in winter – associated with the North and the hibernating Bear. It is a time to draw inward and lie fallow to make way for new growth in the spring. It seemed that I was indeed dealing with an ending in my life. Was the dream bear’s message to simply let go of what was ending, to embrace my present fallowness and to look deep within?

I tried to take that message to heart. Meanwhile, though, the monstrous thing was terrorizing my daily life. I was having trouble sleeping, eating, breathing – yes, definitely breathing – and concentrating. The RIF underway at work made it worse – I felt I had no refuge. Every sphere of my life felt unsafe. For the first time that I could remember, I sometimes had fears that I might not be able to put one foot in front of the other to make it through each day. I could see a sunnier place I wanted to be in the distance, but I didn’t know how to get there from where I was.

The crisis was intensifying as my birthday approached. The total lunar eclipse on the Virgo/Pisces axis occurred the day before my birthday. Every chord of my natal chart was being struck by the transits of the hour. The transiting moon – opposed to my natal sun – was being eclipsed in the same area of life that the monstrous thing was tearing up. Meditating through the hour of the eclipse, I consciously released the part of my life that the monstrous thing had taken over. I offered it up to the eclipse and accepted the loss. Then I replayed my dream of the falcon and the bear. I picked the dream up where it had ended. I visualized walking up the stairs, entering my old bedroom and kneeling before the falcon and the bear. Many times previously I had tried to ask them questions. This time I just listened.

Suddenly they wheeled around the room and came to rest on my shoulders – Falcon on my left, Bear on my right. Then a fiery orb appeared in my lap and I held it. I felt tremendous energy . . . and power.

The crisis came to a head in the weeks that followed, and I had several confrontations with the monstrous thing. In these confrontations, my expression flowed freely and truly, whereas before I felt choked. The confrontations were beating back the monster, but it had only retreated to the cellar.

Then one day on my way home from work, a falcon flew over my car and landed on a nearby pole as I was driving through a railroad crossing. This inspired me to seize the moment and take a bold action that night. That bold action was honest and true and completely unconscious of outcomes. I didn’t plan it, but somehow it exorcised the monstrous thing and something new and better began to emerge in place of what the monster had wrecked. By the summer, I found myself in a new and sunnier place – but not the one I had imagined. A better place.

Today the journey continues and the road ahead me is long. But now I feel grateful to have Falcon and Bear on either side.