Friday, January 25, 2008

The Artist

I had this dream about Than Geoff (Thanissaro Bhikkhu)who was still a monk, yes, but of a different order, more Catholic than Buddhist, more brown- than saffron-robed, with a knotted rope at the waist. Curiously, he himself appeared only briefly in the dream, it was instead a brother monk who was our escort.

Than Geoff had taken over (bought?) this house where a friend of ours once lived. He had completely re-modeled it, removing a rather fussy, grand-scale fireplace that had been the previous owner's pride in order to expand the wall space. For it was now apparent that Than Geoff was a gifted and prolific artist--something we had never known about him before. The walls everywhere throughout the house--it soon appeared that it was something of a mansion--were covered with his work, paintings, construction works and assemblages in a variety of media, etching plates... an infinite variety.

I was particularly struck with one piece, installed in the space where the fireplace had been. It was a large-scale, enlarged photograph of the detail of an abstract painting, in which multi-colored, squiggly horizontal lines of thick, rich paint created something of a landscape, while the blue "sky" above was inscribed with a text in large penciled handwriting--though I remember nothing of the words except that they ended in "the Almighty." (Perhaps this was why, or because, I took Than Geoff to be a Catholic rather than a Buddhist monk.)

There's little else to tell, except that a woman kept appearing to ask where luncheon should be served. Otherwise, the dream was nothing but a guided tour of Than Geoff's renovated mansion, and his art.

I'm not good at remembering my dreams. I may have remembered this one because I was talking on the telephone, yesterday, about dream recall with my friend Michael--about whom I dreamed, and wrote in this blog, a couple of days ago--and about his experience with lucid dreaming. I suspect this dream about Than Geoff had to do with the wonder of the creative mind, and with the beauty of its infinitely rich interior.

Any thoughts?

No comments: