Friday, September 28, 2012

Two conversations at Coffee House Cafe

Event: Friday,  28 September 2012
Updated: Sunday, 7 Oct 12

Dining Room at The Coffee House Cafe in Los Alamos
My favorite place to meet friends and talk. 

On Friday, September 28, I had two back-to-back conversations with local Christian friends at a favorite gathering place here in Los Alamos. Despite where we were in our respective lives, it was good to meet with friends where we could feel invited to be our true selves.

The first friend was an Orthodox brother: a retired U.S. Army soldier and fellow singer at St. Dmitri of Rostov Los Alamos mission of the Orthodox Church in America. We both love to sing the Divine Liturgy while standing together at the parish choir post. These days he is going through rough emotional territory, far different and more bleak than in his days of military combat. It was a privilege to be with him for a while in navigating some white-water rapids in that inner territory.

The second friend, Christian pastor, was concerned about the Mormon factor in the current presidential race. He asked to discuss a book, which I've known about for years but have never read, titled Leaving the Saints: How I lost the Mormons and Found My Faith by Martha Beck.  In reading the book to prepare for our conversation, I discovered that my own family and Martha's have familial ties. That wasn't the only surprise. Martha's insights into her painful disengagement process triggered in me a profound new insight into a long-ago dream (May 1967) that I thought I already understood. Martha was greatly blessed by the counsel of a wise Relief Society president in her home ward, who offered Martha the simple words: "You are free!" These words in this setting brought to mind the dream, which ended with the golden tones of two heavenly trumpets sounding a descending fourth, like in the song "Born Free"!

Both brothers (who don't know each other) have experienced a CREEI dream workshop, as well as Joseph Dillard's Integral Deep Listening interview technique of dream characters.

Meeting with these Christian brothers in the name of the Lord never fails to be enlightening, regardless of the initial subject.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Remembering Ivan

Posted: 21 September 2012

About Ivan

My confession of my bright lost son
Evoked hot tears of hope and joy--
And grief--still seeking ways
For search and rescue
As did He of old for one lost lamb.

He left us on the Autumnal Equinox 16 years ago at age 35....

What more can I say about this beautiful young man without trivializing him or dishonoring his tragic sacrifice? It is the following:
The above verse is a stanza taken from a poem called “Trying the Church before the Family”, written in February 2005 after meeting with the local Mormon stake president in company with my wife Birgitta and my oldest son Nick. The stake president had approached me a few weeks earlier at a public gathering, believing he could help me find “greater peace and happiness”, since he knew I had been excommunicated years earlier in another stake and state. Presuming I needed or even wanted such help, he invited me to talk. I accepted his invitation, not quite knowing why or anything about his stated and unstated purposes.
After we talked first and soon again on a one-on-one, I became angry and felt violated by his interview questions and judgments. This prompted me to begin the writing of blogs on my family website to vent my dismay. Nevertheless, the stake president’s initial steady and cool responses to my angry venting (he read the initial blogs) so impressed me that we began a lengthy dialogue and correspondence. This lasted until August 2006, when he finally confessed he could no longer see a constructive way to continue. I had written and sent him a second poem, “Indictment”, which ended with the words “I shake his judgments off my feet.”
As if in response to this abrupt end to our correspondence, I had a dream called “Dinner with Russ” on 31 August. [See my blog entitled Church of the Holy Restaurant.]  This dream and my Dream Yoga work on it, allowed me to create a “dreamage”, which in turn allowed me to process my personal disquiet into a final resolution. It allowed me to include and transcend my frustrating experience with this ecclesiastic leader.
It also gave me new insight into how to launch a new search and rescue process for Ivan.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Awful Irony of 9-11

Posted: Saturday, 15 September 2012
Updated: 2 Oct 12

Twin Towers Attack

Suddenly today (Saturday) I became aware of new synchronistic and ironic links to this now notorious date! What transcendent Force has branded it on our international consciousness?

"9-11": a date of mystery...

--2001, when the planes hit the towers and the Pentagon, changing the world forever...

--My son's telephone call that horrific, fateful night, seeking consolation from his dad. He was witness to the attack, living just a mile away! Seeing so many jumping from windows, he grabbed his camera to record his desperate witnessing and crippled himself for the rest of his life.

--1994, birthdate of Whitney Anne, a granddaughter whom I've never met nor seen, nor know anything about, except that she has just turned 18 and thus now a legal adult. May she find us, is my silent prayer, as did her half-sister Devon B just months ago, now 24, who herself was born the day before this eerie date.

Is this yet another way to understand KJV Isaiah's mystery: ...for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord...? (3 Ne 22:1; Isa 54:1)

--2007. My NYC son above sent an email to the family about the "Disclosure Project" by Dr. Steven Greer: Beyond 9/11: Governmental Proof of Extraterrestrials. Although the project had been hot news by the National Press Club in May 2001--six years earlier--he chose this 9/11 date to bring it to our attention. It precipitated a sea change in our family relationships, especially with me.

--2012. Final version of my Sunstone symposium paper: "How the Bomb Corrupted the World..."

--Most bizarre of all from the Book of Mormon3 Ne 21:9-11:
9. For in that day, for my sake shall the Father work a work, which shall be a great and a marvelous work among them; and there shall be among them those who will not believe it, although a man shall declare it unto them. 10. But behold, the life of my servant shall be in my had; therefore they shall not hurt him, although he shall be marred because of them. Yet I will heal him, for I will show unto them that my wisdom is greater than the cunning of the devil. 11. Therefore it hall come to pass that whosoever will not believe in my words, who am Jesus Christ, which the Father shall cause him to bring forth unto the Gentiles, and shall give unto him power that that he shall bring them forth unto the Gentiles, (it shall be done even as Moses said) they shall be cut off from among my people who are of the covenant.
 A moment of truth? What is the "sign" this chapter announces? Who truly is the "servant" in verse 10? Joseph Smith thought it was himself, which, of course, it cannot be....

These thoughts are truly crazy-making for one like me, born and reared a Mormon and caught in the archetypes of these writings! Heal us, Lord Jesus, with thy love and wisdom! And make us--all of us in the 'covenant'--aware of the true meaning of these 9-11 words.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Great Berlin Tunnel Mystery

Original post: 8 September 2012
Updated: 23 Nov 12

Chapter One. Fort Monmouth
"Corporal Kregg! Eugene N, RA 19450328?" shouted the first sergeant when I poked my head into the Orderly Room for news about my status on what had become a daily morning ritual for the past three months. No one knew why I was there, living out of my duffle bag at the transient barracks of Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, headquarters of the U. S. Army Signal Corps, and ready to deploy at a moment's notice. 
When I nodded a silent yes to his query, he shouted even louder, WE KNOW WHO YOU ARE!" 
Thus begins a story launched in Phyllis Barber's writing workshop at the recent Sunstone symposium at the University of Utah. I was one of at least ten participants, two males, as Phyllis urged us to think of a single subject that we wished deeply to write about. My long-ago Berlin experience leaped to mind.

"Begin it with a specific point in time and place and flesh it out from there", she instructed.

Welcome to the process, dear readers.

The Pentagon
"Colonel Nichol in the Pentagon wants to see you NOW!" The sergeant bellows. "Get your butt gone! Here are your traveling orders." 

This was surprisingly great news. At last I'm going somewhere, but where? And why the Pentagon? I hope at least to get out of this hell hole and away from all that meaningless drudgery, dodging KP, cleaning latrines and cutting hedges. Summer 1955 had been the worst summer of my life with a hurricane parked off Jersey's coast, ravaging the territory with 100% humidity and 105 degrees. I am an Arizona boy, well used to the heat, but not the humidity.

It can't be an overseas assignment,  I muse, since I have only six months left in the service and the minimum time left must be at least nine months. Why the hell did I have to spin my wheels for three wasted months?! and away from my wife, new baby and that great country club job in the Russian Division at the Army Language School?

Boy, was I mad!

I don't remember how I got to DC from Ft. Monmouth, but I find myself walking the corridors of the Pentagon in my summer khakis and corporal stripes, carrying my duffle bag, surrounded by bustling brass (military officers) of all types, and looking for the Colonel's office. I find it full of colonels and generals and other VIP-looking guys. When I meekly identify myself, they rapidly scatter and I enter his now empty offices.

The colonel gestures for me to sit and apologizes for the wait. "Corporal, I cannot tell you the nature of your assignment, but you are to take the next plane to Berlin with orders to bump anyone off if there is no room, no matter what their rank. The minimum time-of-service-remaining restriction for you is waved. Here are your orders and good luck."

Mine is the only name on the paper and they are signed by General Maxwell Taylor, Chief of Staff for the U.S. Army.

Wow! What is going on?

Chapter Two. Berlin

(click on image to enlarge) 
U.S. Army Orders to Berlin
More traveling blur--don't remember the flight to Frankfurt to change planes for Berlin, but I do remember that awful DC-3 garbage flight to Berlin's Templhof airport. Literally for garbage and mail. No passenger seats: a strictly cargo flight. But it was the quickest available way to Berlin. I sit on the bare floor in the tail of the plane among the mail sacks, still in khakis with my duffle bag. No seats. No heat. No cabin pressure. Cold as hell. By the time the flight arrives at Templhof, I've frozen my butt off and am blue and shivering. Damn! Where am I going now?

Templhof International Airport, Berlin

I run to the nearest phone booth and dial the number the colonel had given me. "Corporal Kregg! Corporal Kregg! You're here! You're here! Stay where you are! We'll be there pronto!" exclaims the soldier on the other end of the line. Ah, somebody knows me, I say to myself and begin thinking that every Army vehicle passing by was now meant for me. After an hour of wondering how long "pronto" meant, an Army Jeep screeches to a halt at the telephone booth. A couple of scruffy M*A*S*H-looking guys in a sort-of-uniform, but with Argyle socks, pile out of the vehicle. One looks at my orders, the other takes my duffle bag and off we go "pronto", driving wildly through rutted, winding muddy roads and an occasional village for the hour back to wherever they came from.

Chapter Three. The Rudow Compound  

As we approach our destination near the little village of Rudow, which is exactly on the border of the East Zone of Berlin, I am surprised by a compound surrounded by a double chain-link fence topped by barbed wire and illuminated with high intensity flood lights on all sides. On the East Zone side of the border off in the distance I see East German Vopos (police) with their German Shepherd guard dogs. I see three buildings inside the compound, the largest of which has an array of large radio antennae on its roof. It is obviously a super sophisticated U.S. Army Signal Corps. listening post.

At the only entrance to the compound a young officer carefully checks my papers, then allows the jeep to enter. I am told that the large warehouse looking building with the antennae is restricted and I am not to enter it until briefed by the commandant of the outpost, a Colonel Helgestad, who is away for a week or so. One of the other two buildings is a power plant for the facilities and the other a combination barracks and mess hall for the soldiers. The mess hall is spacious and well stocked on a 24-hour basis. I am shown my bunk on the second floor and turn in for the night, head now spinning with all the newness and secrecy.

"What the hell is all this and what am I doing here?" I think to myself as I drift off to sleep....

Chapter Four.  First Morning

The next morning, sometime in September 1955, I wander around the mess hall for breakfast. No one has talked to me yet about anything other than the guy who showed me my bunk last night. Breakfast consists of just about anything one could want. Wonderful bacon and butter from Denmark. Eggs anyway you want. Hash brown potatoes. Sausage, too.

I notice four or five older guys over in the corner talking quietly. They don't look like soldiers and are dressed in non-uniform type clothing. Strange. I hear a British accent from the guy with a mustache and glasses. He looks like a professor. They don't pay any attention to me and I don't dare get too near them. Soldiers are quietly going about their business moving in and out of the building without greeting me or anyone else.

Soon Captain Livingston, the Executive Officer, makes his appearance and introduces himself. He gives me an official welcome and takes me for a tour of the compound, making sure to tell me that "the big warehouse" (the one with the antennae) is off limits under any circumstances. He tells me that until the colonel comes back from off site TDY (temporary duty) to brief me on my regular duties, I'll probably pull guard duty occasionally in one of the guard booths built around the outside of all buildings. I'm so intimidated and awed by all of this that I can't ask questions.

And so that evening I stand guard in a little kiosk the size of a telephone booth on the southeast corner of the barracks building. I can see the Vopos with their dogs walking along the fence of East Berlin side of the border nearest the compound. They can also see me and we signal to each other with mute, but internationally recognizable hand and arm insults, grinning at each other as they slowly walk by and beyond.

Several days go by as I wait for the colonel's return. I can't remember speaking to anybody during those days except the Executive Officer. In my boredom during guard duty breaks, I typically take out my chess set to work through various classic chess openings, using a well-known reference titled The Ideas Behind the Chess Openings by chess Grandmaster Rubin Fine. One day the other captain comes by my bunk and sees my chess pieces set up to start a game. He is pudgy and slightly unkempt, not crisp and sharp like Capt. Livingston. I don't think much of him.

"Ah, I see you are a chess player!" the captain says to me. Yes, I nod, thinking to myself, 'I have learned this game from expert native Russian instructors at the Army Language School. Russians play a mean game!' "And I see you have Rubin's book", he continues. 'Rubin?' I think to myself. What does that mean?' "Would you like to play a game?" he asks. Of course I can't say no. And we begin.

I doesn't take long for him to win my surprised respect, frumpy clothes or not. I am shocked to realize I am no match for him! As we play and talk he reveals his secret: Rubin Fine (one of the greatest players of the game) and he were friends and chess-playing college roommates! Yikes!

Chapter Five.   The Strange Men

Captain Livingston comes to escort me to the forbidden warehouse. The colonel is back and wants to see me immediately. Livingston doesn't speak until he slides a large door open, gestures me inside, and slides it tightly shut. He speaks conspiratorially,  "Corporal, this is not an Army installation as you might have thought. It is a CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) operation. The Army is simply a cover. Follow me." I don't know what he is talking about, since I've never heard of the "CIA"! But I say nothing and follow him with increasing awe and wonder.

Entering the commandant's office, Colonel James E. Helgestad is standing waiting for us. "Corporal Kregg", he barks, "You are standing in the hottest intelligence operation going on the face of the planet! But we don't know if you will make it. You are the bottom of the barrel--a last resort--since the CIA has run out of available agents. You were recommended by the ALS administration as someone with potential. We will soon see. Come with me."

I follow him out of the office down some stairs to a large room full of electronic equipment including banks and banks of Ampex automatic tape recorders whirring and clicking on and off, on and off. Helgestad takes me to one particular machine, plugs a set of headphones into it and puts them on my head. I hear Russian being spoken very fast and my heart sinks. It's too fast for me, I can't understand a thing! But I dare not reveal this heart-stopping realization to the colonel. He says nothing but gestures to me to follow him again, this time to a small nearby work office.

As we enter the room I recognize the strange guys, all older than I, whom I had seen huddled and hushed in the corner of the mess hall. The colonel introduces me and leaves. My head is swimming and I feel panicky. "Fellows", I confess, stammering and shaking, "I'm afraid this thing for me is a big bust. When the colonel put those earphones on me, I couldn't understand a thing!"

"Relax, Gene", says big Bill Cockell now grinning, "We've all been through it!" Bill becomes my big brother helper. (One day in the dim future--the late 1980s--he will become Rear Admiral William A. Cockell, Deputy National Security Adviser to President Ronald Reagan.)

"Cool Ens" Cockell (sketched for office wall)

I breathe a huge sigh of relief and ask, "How long did it take for you guys to get up to speed?"

Bill answers, "About six months".

More panic! I only have six months left in the Service and am "the bottom of the barrel--a last resort". For what? I make a silent vow: to work harder than anybody else here. I have to get up to speed fast to make up for those three months lost at Fort Monmouth.

Chapter Six.  The Work

Thus begins a self-imposed, unsupervised regimen of 16 to 20 hours a day, seven days a week, month after month. Never have I been so driven, intuiting that one rarely gets a chance like this to discover what he is made of. I learn later that day from Bill that my job is to alert our CIA superiors to timely information that cannot wait to be processed in either London or Washington by linguistic experts with plenty of time. The CIA and SIS (Secret Intelligence Service, MI-6) are working a joint venture. The project has tapped into the top secret communication cables between the Soviet High Command based in Berlin and the Kremlin in Moscow. Both the Red Army and KGB use these lines.

I was soon to learn that Red Army and KGB people communicate in different ways. Red Army callers identify themselves by name over the supposedly "secure" telephone lines; KGB callers don't. In fact, callers from the latter group never finish a conversation: they break them into pieces by switching telephone lines.

(click on map to enlarge)
Operation Stopwatch/Gold: (top left) aerial diagram of the Berlin tunnel operation; (top right) map showing Red Army dispositions in East Germany; (bottom) cross-section plan of the tunnel.

I feel myself go into "overdrive" and within weeks am out producing the other agents. They are not so driven as I and rotate with each other every six weeks. I stay to myself in the compound without such relief intervals and without Army supervision. I answer only to the CIA section chief.

Chapter Seven.  First Snowfall

It is mid October and the first snow of the season has fallen. I have come to work early, but soon hear shouts and screams from soldiers in the east part of the warehouse. I come out of the office to look at what is happening. Several men are at the east windows pointing hysterically towards the outside.

"Oh, my God!" I gasp to witness a long bare strip of ground in the newly white landscape from the east pointing directly as an arrow straight to our building! The snow has melted atop the tunnel! The Army engineers have not accounted for the tunnel heat reaching ground level. The project is dangerously exposed!

London is called and refrigeration engineers are on the way. It may be too late. At any moment we expect the project to be shut down. It is panic-ville!

But nothing happens.

Within hours the British engineers arrive. Fortunately, it is also a dark, overcast day and the snow keeps falling. It soon covers the bare strip, but we do not yet know the damage done with this spectacular security breach. All we dare hope, as the hours and days go by, is to return to our posts and work as if nothing has happened.

Nothing continues to happen over the next few days, but it takes weeks to relax and push the near catastrophe from our minds.

Possible future chapters...

"A 'Mr. Green' wants to see you..".

Two German girls


The Colonel's chewing out

Pop ups


R&R in Garmish

Singing with balalaika band

Applying for college

Career decision

Sealing wax signature

Rogue's Gallery

Bill's advice

Crossing paths with the section chief

The Brit's complaint

The Lieutenant's boast

Crossing the Atlantic

Returning home

School with a vengeance

Orange Coast College

UC Berkeley
   The call

U of Utah
   The speech
   Seeds of dialogue
   Stake mission
   Vic's tests

First job after grad school


Miraculous dissertation defense

Dad dies
   My spiritual work begins
   The idea
   Meeting J. B. Rhine
   Project management

Can Pit bull Brothers be Hounds of Heaven?

Posted: 8 September 2012

The contest began four years ago when Tom, one of two Mormon patriarchs currently assigned to Eastern Europe, referred to me as a "pit bull" in our correspondence. When I replied: "Can a pit bull be a hound of heaven?" he ignored the question and reacted with a pontifical ten point sermon. This dashed my hopes for an honest, responsive dialogue and I joined the OCA (Orthodox Church in America)--a daughter church of the Russian Orthodox Church based in Moscow.

Our correspondence resumed recently at a higher level when Tom responded to an early draft of a paper prepared for the 2012 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium, which I attached to a blind copy email sent to approximately 40 LDS scholars with a request for comment. Tom was one of only two to respond.  And it has become the kind of dialogue with an active Mormon ecclesiastical leader that I have longed for since UC Berkeley days in the spring of 1959.

To be continued....

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Reflections on my Mormonness

Begun: 6 September 2012
Updated: 8 Sep 12

The Angel Moroni

On every Mormon temple in the world there is a statue of the angel Moroni blowing a trumpet. The image is inspired by Revelation 14:6. 
"And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people." (KJV)
That's an image the Mormon Church wants literally "trumpeted" around the world as belonging exclusively to it as "the only true church". To me these days, although my view here may seem too extreme, the institution's motive behind this image is not unlike that of the Soviets' "monumental propaganda" during their hey days in the 1920s through the 1980s, as well as that of the Third Reich in the 1930s and early 1940s. It is meant to focus the world's attention on something about them that they believe is fundamentally "true". In this case, the Mormon Church hierarchy wants to lay exclusive claim to Rev 14:6 as referring to Joseph Smith's early experience with the angel Moroni.

Growing up Mormon in Arizona with maternal Mormon Pioneer ancestors and serving two stake (local) missions in my late teens and late twenties, I was saturated by this image of Moroni and his appearances to Joseph Smith as a teenager in the early 1820s. I believed it then and I believe it now. That is: I believe that there is an "angel Moroni" who exists beyond Joseph's imagination.

But what does that really mean?

While I believe in the reality of Moroni, I no longer believe that the Mormon Church--i.e., the institution, which calls itself  "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints" (LDS), is willing to tell its story straight any better than the Soviets or Nazis were willing to tell theirs.

It is an issue of honesty, authenticity and courage, as well as humility and lack of defensiveness. A courageous, confident and honest institution of whatever persuasion needs never to feel defensive about its beliefs and history. Thus, the defensiveness of the hierarchy from top to bottom, exemplified by its readiness to excommunicate those who question or challenge its authority and official story, is the best indicator of a fundamental lack of faith in its own message and ideology. Furthermore, it reveals that behind this defensiveness is the fear of defilement rather than the fear of not loving as Jesus taught.

I can say this boldly, because I have experienced first-hand the consequences of this defensiveness, having been twice excommunicated (1966 and 1992).

Nevertheless, there is a powerful, pre-programmed story still alive in my heart and mind, which I will try to tell straight in this blog. So saying, I also believe that if those in key positions in the institutional hierarchy, like my Mormon patriarch friend Tom, can somehow face and overcome their fundamental "fear of defilement" and learn instead the "fear of insufficient love" experienced by the former-day saints, then I believe they will find the key to the truth of their original vision. This, IMHO, can be said for all religious institutions of whatever persuasion.

All questions or challenges to my assertions here, if asked or made in good will, are welcome.

Reflecting further, the above illustration was developed for a concert called "An Evening with Zhenya", presented at the request of the Ventura, California stake Relief Society president on 17 March 1992 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Mormon Relief Society. This was the last concert I ever performed for the Mormon Church.

In the illustration, the two musical notes coming from the trumpet refer to two "golden tones" heard in a dream on 4 May 1967, mentioned in my poem "Forest Dream Remembered", which was written
 to capture my first-visit impressions of Russia on the eve of my departure from Moscow in September 1973. (See illustration.) The poem begins: "My pilgrimage at last complete. The mount is climbed. Dark clouds once far above glide silently below..."

In the dream I am 
standing alone in a forest clearing and then greet several people as they come into view. The first is an older comely woman with regal bearing who speaks to me in English with a Russian accent saying, "Ah, I thought I recognized you. I heard you sing long ago and was most impressed. And I hope I hear you sing again." Others now come into view, all older, distinguished looking men who come in single file to shake my hand and wordlessly introduce themselves. I hear whispers from a crowd, which has gathered in the meantime and identifies each man, "Oh that's [so and so] and that's [another] and that's "The Great Toynbee". (The only name I remember). I remain silent as everyone melts away and then hear the pianissimo sound of two wondrously clear trumpet tones in a descending fourth (like in the song Born Free!), their volume gradually growing until they thunderously reverberate from horizon to horizon as I awaken in awe and great excitement with these gloriously beautiful tones still echoing in my mind and heart.

What did it mean? I asked myself at the time. I didn't know. Who was that lady? Mother Russia asking me to sing to her? I didn't know. Who was that blowing the trumpet? Moroni? Gabriel? A duet? I didn't know. What I did know was that I felt comforted and believed it held a mystical key for new direction at a time when I felt spiritually lost.

It wasn't until the following September that I learned that, just a month after this May 1967 dream, the eminent English historian Arnold Toynbee delivered the commencement address to my Alma Mater, the University of Utah, entitled "Three Generations in a Crisis". It was a warning and a sermon to America and the Mormon Church and also a Vietnam War protest.

In addition I learned that the main reason Toynbee had come to Utah was to present a paper entitled "The Role of Creativity in History" to the annual U of Utah creativity workshop sponsored by psychology Professor Calvin Taylor, who specialized in creativity. Both Toynbee papers gave me profoundly new direction and understanding and helped me make sense of my dream. Eventually this led me to Moscow during the height of the Cold War.

This new direction and its consequences are spelled out in the 1992 concert notes for the Ventura Relief Society. It was a concert almost suppressed by the local Mormon stake president in his fear of being defiled and defied. Providentially, he hadn't known about the it until it was too late to cancel.

Also mentioned in Forest Dream Remembered is the line "...and swords to plowshares near an ancient fortress makes me cry" referring to the powerful
 impact the sculpture had on me when I first encountered it at the celebrated Tretyakov Gallery near the Kremlin. Below is a photo of the UN duplicate. The only difference I could find after inspecting them both in different years is the sculptor's marking in the base of the Moscow figure. Carved in Russian is: "Isa 2:4". There is no such marking in the New York figure.

The poem follows:

Forest Dream Remembered

My pilgrimage
at last complete.
The mount is climbed.
Dark clouds
once far above
glide silently below.

To my surprise
this peak is broad!
A castle’s built upon it,
and “...swords ‘to plowshares”
near an ancient fortress
makes me cry.

But so many here before me!
Some with words of virtue,
more with sounds of greed.
Do they dilute my quest?

Or is this not the place I seek?
Where golden tones
once pierced my sleep?
Has she I met so long ago
not heard my song
nor know I’ve come?

Such foolish youthful questions!
I return unto my own
to wait an outer answer,
and if my hope is true,
I’ll come again
next time to inner chambers.

23 Sep 73
(Op. 28)


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Dream of Old Mormon Phoenix Second Ward

Posted: Sept 4, 2012

Posted: 4 September 2012
Updated: 10 Sep 12

Archway between chapel and culture hall
Because I believe dreams tell a greater truth than our waking identities are used to telling, I give them special attention. Because this particular recent dream brought two of my sons to mind and placed me and them in an old, trusted environment, I put it through a dream analysis process (CDL) that I have learned to trust.

[Note: "CDL" is a combination of my own CREEI process and psychotherapist Joseph Dillard's Integral Deep Listening process.]

Creative Deep Listening Interview
of a dream on September 2, 2012
[Joseph Dillard asks the IDL questions]

Date of interview:  4 September 2012

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

1.  LADDOF (Los Alamos Deep Democracy Open Forum, Inc.)
2.  Family relationships
3.  RPK (Remote Psychokinesis experiment)

Tell me a dream you remember...

. September 2, 2012  0300
In Mormon Church bldg with many people after a meeting. Looks like the old Phoenix 2nd Ward. I am talking to some men. One recognizes me and speaks of “Jimmy” and Ivan, obviously ignorant of Ivan’s death. I’m conflicted about telling him about Ivan’s suicide, but do tell one of the other men about it. He agrees to inform the other man in a discrete way.

CREEI score: +++++?//+++/+++  Motivational

Why do you think that you had this dream?
.This is the first dream I’ve had in three months. I went to bed wondering where my life was w/r to my sense of purpose and why I hadn’t been remembering my dreams.

If it were playing at a theater, what name would be on the marquee?
. Old Mormon Phoenix 2nd Ward

These are the characters in the dream…
.Mormon church bldg, Mormon men, Jimmy, Ivan

If a character had something especially important to tell you, which would it be?
.Mormon church bldg

(Character,) would you please tell me what you look like and what you are doing?
.I would be happy to. I have been built by Mormons in an old Spanish style similar to the church Eugene attended as a child. I am here to bring Eugene to a new awareness of two of his sons, one of which was a suicide.

What do you like most about yourself in this dream? What are your strengths?
. I am beautifully made by those sensitive to the Mormon culture and its past. I like having a Spanish flavor.

What do you dislike most about yourself? Do you have weaknesses? What?
.Oh, dear. Must I dislike something about myself? I can’t think of any.

If you could change this dream in any way you wanted, would you? If so, how would you change it?
.I don’t see the need to change.

If that dream were to continue, what would happen next?
.Ah, perhaps Eugene would feel free to talk about his dead son. He seems reluctant to inform the fellow who doesn’t know what’s happened.

(Character,) if you could be anywhere you wanted to be and take any form you desired, would you change? If so, how?
.Actually, I’m this shape for a good reason. Jimmy, who became Jim, and is now James, liked to attend a different church in Los Alamos, when he lived there. They were Unitarian. When he moved back to Santa Fe and attended the Unitarian church there, it was in a building built by the Mormons of the same architectural style as I.

(You are in this person’s dream, correct? They created you, right?)
.Yes and yes

(Character), what aspect of this person do you represent or most closely personify?
.I am his inner church sanctuary, which is flexible and responsive to outer influences.

If you could live this person’s waking life for him/her, how would you live it differently?
.I think Eugene is evolving. I have nothing to instruct him about.

If you could live this person’s waking life for him/her today, would you handle his/her three life issues differently? If so, how?
.I’d adjust the order: Family, LADDOF, RPK

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

How would you score yourself 0-10, in confidence, compassion, wisdom, acceptance, peace of mind, and witnessing? And why?
.Confidence: 10. I can take any shape necessary to give Eugene a sense of structural security. 

Compassion: 10. I embrace and include all who come in to me; 

Wisdom: 10. I see each person’s purpose and struggle to grow; 

Acceptance: 10. My doors are open to all; 

Peace of Mind: 10. I am very comfortable in my “skin”  J

Witnessing: 10. I see the bigger and the smaller pictures….

(Character,) if you scored tens in all six of these qualities, would you be different? If so, how?
.I’m there

How would this person’s life be different if he/she naturally scored high in all six of these qualities all the time?
.He would surely not be anxious about any of his life issues.

In what life situations would it be most beneficial for this person to imagine that they are you and act as you would?
.Any time he is anxious.

Why do you think that you are in this dream?
.To make Eugene more aware not only of his own inner reality, but that of his family. His son Jim had a dream two or so days before this dream, where his brother Ivan came back to life. It gave great comfort to Jim, who had labored under much guilt about Ivan’s death. Eugene has more conversations to have with other family members, whether or not they are Mormon.

(Dreamer,) what have you heard yourself say? (Read them over)
.There is an emerging Mormon related potential that has the wisdom and confidence to provide me with the structure and compassion to deal with my life's work and family issues.

If this dream were a wake-up call from your soul, what do you think it would be saying to you?
.Think and reflect more about your inner and outer families’ spiritual needs.

Note: That others know “Jimmy” suggests they’ve known him since he was a boy. I learned about the Unitarians in Los Alamos through Jim after he moved away from Los Alamos and retured to Santa Fe three or so years ago. When Jim moved to Santa Fe, he occasionally attended the Unitarian Church there, which meets in a building originally built by the Mormons and is architecturally the same classic Spanish style as was the Phoenix Second Ward, which is now a state-protected historical site in Phoenix.

Unitarian Church building in Santa Fe (built by Mormons)

Yesterday (9/1) I wrote an email to a Mormon patriarch (assigned to Eastern Europe) and oldest son in an attempt to gain higher perspective and deeper awareness of inner (nuclear) family and outer Mormon family relationships, wondering if I would have a dream to end the dream drought of the last three months. This dream is clearly an answer to that prayerful wondering.