“Is he dead?” Hal asked.
“Not yet, but he will be by nightfall,” Sean said turning around. “Come on! Let’s go!”
“We can’t just leave him there!” Hal protested.
“He won’t be alone too much longer,” Sean replied. “The wolves will find him.”
“Isn’t that murder?” Hal asked following Sean and pulling his heavy parka about him tighter.
“Or manslaughter at least?”
“What if it is, boy?” Sean demanded and turned to face Hal. Hal flinched but this time Sean didn’t lash out at him. Instead he spoke lovingly as a father might to his young son. “The laws of society don’t apply out here. Here it’s survival of the fittest! He who dreams best survives! The hunter down there forgot to dream somewhere along the way, and because of that he’s doing to die.” Sean smiled warmly. “Who knows? Maybe the wolves who’ll find him later tonight have already dreamed him into existence as their next meal!”
Sean barked a loud laugh then turned around with Hal on his heels. They walked a mile in silence.
“How’d you do it?” Hal asked again.
Sean turned around and began angrily hitting Hal. Hal raised his arms in self-defense, but Sean’s fists seemed to get through everything Hal used to defend himself. Hal then resorted to an offensive, but everything he threw at Sean failed, even his kicks. Hal had been a black belt in his younger days, but here in the wilderness he couldn’t even protect himself against the shaman. Consciously he blamed it on the heavy parka, but inwardly he knew better.
“Why do you constantly ask me how I dream?” Sean roared. “Why can’t you get it through your thick head? It’s like sex! You can read about it all day long and analyze it until you’re blue in the face, but reading books about sex won’t take away your virginity! You can’t understand it, but you must know it! And you can’t know it without experiencing it! And you can’t make it happen; it will happen spontaneously on its own accord! The more you analyze something magical, the more it loses its magic until it’s no more.
“When something works, don’t categorize it and create a system to teach others, because you’ll lose its power if you do. The Dreaming is always changing, and what works today will be useless tomorrow in the clutches of the Dreaming. The Dreaming is fluid and always changing, like the cycles of the seasons. Three decades ago I practiced a type of shamanic witchcraft, and then it changed. I didn’t try to hang onto it or analyze it or categorize it; I simply changed with the flow. Then it turned into a sort of meditative shamanism, and it worked well, which then turned into a more traditional Native American Indian Shamanism. Now I practice a more psychological shamanism, but it’s still the Dreaming flowing through me.
“You Americans try to create fate instead of allowing fate to lead you. You fear death and try to escape it instead of letting it teach you. You ignore confrontation for the sake of peace, then die of stress-related diseases.” He spat on my boots but I did nothing. “You Americans are always trying to find out who you are, locate your lost inner-child, when the truth of the matter is you have so many masks and identities you can’t possibly know them all. You’re simply awareness in the moment, nothing more and nothing less. You’ve stopped paying attention to the physical signals of the dreaming process that is constantly happening within you and through you and in your environment. You think I dreamt that hunter’s gun locking on my own? I sensed the dream in the Dreaming! Hal sensed the dream in the River and pulled it out of the stream of consciousness or subconscious… or collective unconsciousness… or whatever you Americans think you should call it. The pulse of life? Call it that for all I care!”
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