dreams & freud, but not at the same time

I had a dream last night which seems to me to have obvious symbolism. There are three things about it that persist in my mind this morning. The dream seemed to take place at a camp, presumably a church camp, where my father was in charge.  He actually was the head dude at a summer church camp which I recall was called Camp Caesar, somewhere in the south.

In the dream, we were all swimming in a river. But the frustrating thing was the rock bed of the river was very very shallow, so that we skimmed along the top of surface. I kept wanting to go deeper, but my father warned me not too.

The second thing in the dream was that he warned me not to go too far in the river.

He was calling me back.

Interesting aside: When my father was director of Camp Caesar there was a drowning in the pool. He was always troubled by it and felt that there was more to the story than the fact that a camper had broken into the locked pool and gone swimming alone.

The third thing was that there was music in the camp and I remember reflecting how easy it would be for me to write some of it, fitting vapid tunes to vapid words.

This all seems like a dream response to the vapidity of events at my church this week.  Nothing dire, but as usual I feel a bit caught in other people’s conception of church as comfortable and mediocre.  I try to duck this sort of thing because it has such an ill effect on me.

Maybe tonight I’ll dream of dodge ball.

Finished off Kaddish and other poems by Allen Ginsberg this morning. Re-reading Ginsberg I find that I have a tenderness towards him as man and poet. I find his poetry surprisingly meaningful and beautiful.

I search in vain for what William Carlos Williams described derogatorily as his profanity or something when he encouraged Thomas Merton to read him.

For me, Ginsberg is the opposite of profane. I find him very spiritual and helpful in pondering contemporary madness.

Will probably continue to read him.

I received another book in the mail recently and began reading a bit in it yesterday. In Destructive Emotions: How Can We Overcome Them? A scientific dialog with the Dalai Lama narrated by Daniel Goleman, I was fascinated to read the results of fMRIs on the brain of a meditating Buddhist monk.

These tests were conducted early in this century and revealed groundbreaking aspects of the stages of Buddhist meditation, all of which apparently are detectable and defy what was previously thought about how the brain moves from emotive state to emotive state.

fMRIs are apparently MRI videos.

I ordered this book from my PaperBack Exchange account where I have built up credits by mailing off books to other people when requested.

I search the PaperBack Exchange site regularly when I get interested in someone like Daniel Goleman.

I finished reviewing my reading notes on his book on Denial this morning and began moving ahead with reading in it. The problem is that the brain science is dated because it was written in the 80s.  However I am still learning from it.

And it dovetails nicely with Freud, Religion, and the Roaring Twenties by my friend, Henry Idema which is teaching me a lot about Freud.

It’s funny to keep returning to Freud, but I recall someone (Harold Bloom?) said that he was actually at his best when considered an essayist. So I think of him a bit like that more than as a groundbreaker in the “science” of the study of mind (psychology).

Feeling pressure yesterday I retreated in Mozart, Beethoven and escape reading (besides the books mentioned I eventually devolved into the last volume of The Hunger Games).

I have a full day planned today. I am taking my Mom to see her new shrink for a second time. Then ballet classes. My regular teachers are going to be absent. One of the substitutes is a dancer from the dance company Mobius. I might have that wrong. I just looked at Mobius’s web site and I don’t see a familiar name.

Anyway, that should be interesting.

At the end of the day, Eileen and I have a dinner date. I look forward to that.



I put this here because I couldn’t get it to show up on Facebook. It was shared by Lou Beach, the author of 420 Characters. He continues to put up short vignettes on Facebook which I enjoy.

I know this is kind of sleazy, but it does say something about the far right.


Internet History Sourcebooks

This seems to be an online source for a bunch of free access to history books, essays, links and docs organized by subject. Intereting.


Egyptian Lawmaker Resigns After Lying About Nose Job – NYTimes.com

This is a pretty bizarre story of lying.


Holder Explains Threat That Would Call for Killing Without Trial – NYTimes.com

Blood on our hands. I abhor the entire idea of treading terrorism in any way but criminal. Assassination is an arbitrary evil act that I find difficult to  justify in most cases.


The Rediscovery of Character – NYTimes.com

Another examination of the recently deceased scholar, James Q. Wilson.

Here’s a link to the essay by Wilson from which Brooks takes his column title (and links in).

The rediscovery of character: private virtue and public policy > Public Interest > National Affairs


The Associated Press: NY violin prodigy, now award-winning fundraiser

Inspiring little story about how much difference one diligent young person can make in the world. And music.


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2 thoughts on “dreams & freud, but not at the same time

  1. Over the years I have read Ginsberg’s poetry and many books about Ginsberg-I highly recommend this book on Ginsberg, “A Blue Hand: The Tragicomic, Mind-Altering Odyssey of Allen Ginsberg, a Holy Fool, a Rebel Muse, a Dharma Bum, and His Prickly Bride in India” by Deborah Baker-peace Jonny

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