originally published: 2012-02-29
My dream plot today started out as a pretty cut-and-dried sabotage-and-running-away plot. These themes reoccur usually when I’m experiencing fear about change, or the unknown. When I begin to feel that I am getting too close to something, and feel the urge to destroy it before it has a chance to hurt me. My discussion with Graham today about my current job, my courses, and my future employment goals triggered those fears.In the dream, I deliberately cut the power to the building I was working as a guard in, causing all the computers to crash. People were running around in the dim light from the windows, and shouting trying to fix things, while I snuck around gathering stuff together so I could leave. One of the people in the building I was particularly trying to avoid, was Graham.
However, I took so long making my preparations, that I never did leave. Graham found me and started a discussion with me about his rosary. His rosary was quite different – instead of beads, each place was marked with a wick cup, like a rosary-menorah1,2. The cups were all in a straight line, with the Mary wick cup at one end, five lesser cups, and the Jesus wick cup at the other end. It wasn’t a very big rosary-menorah, perhaps the length of a man’s forearm. It was brass decorated with enamel.
Graham extended it out to me, Mary-end first, as he demonstrated and explained how it works. One lights the Mary wick first, and says the prayer that goes with that. By the time the prayer is finished, the Mary flame has caught the next wick in line, and you say the prayer over that one, then the next one catches, and so on, until at last the Jesus wick catches and the whole thing is lit.
On one level, it was my subconscious amalgamating and visualizing the symbolism of Graham’s parish’s Easter candle-lighting ceremony. On another level, it showed how the Light flowed through Judaism, into Mary, down and down and down, finally into Jesus and out through the rest of Christendom.
Graham caught me and taught me how the Light assuages the fear. I don’t have to be scared. I don’t have to run away. I don’t have to leave. I don’t have to change, and I don’t have to be afraid of the change. I can stay on my side, and yet remain connected through the Light.
The little rosary-menorah blazed in full between us, Judaism, Mary and Me on one side, Christendom, Jesus and Graham on the other.
– M is for Mary
1. In shul this past Shabbat Parshat Terumah is specifically about the construction of the Tabernacle (Exodus 25:1–8), and the Ark of the Covenant (Exodus 25:10–16), but can also include the menorah construction, which is found in the next lines (Exodus 25:31-40).
2. The original description of the construction of the menorah for the Temple (Exodus 25:31-40), describes flowers of almond (or almond blossoms), indicating that there is conjoined flower symbolism between a rosary and a menorah.