Dream of:06 December 1997 "In The Cathedral With Saint Augustine"
It was almost time for final exams in a class which I was taking on bankruptcy law. The classroom was filled with 30-40 students who had assembled for a review session before the finals. We were all sitting in typical student desks with our bankruptcy codes lying open on our desks in front of us. The teacher sitting in front of the room, seemed to be a judge, but she also reminded me of my old law school professor, Betty Dohoney. Patient and understanding, she seemed genuinely interested in teaching us.
We first examined some of the history of bankruptcy law to see if we could discover its origins. It appeared that bankruptcy law had first been formulated in the 1400s. Much controversy still remained over the centuries about the benefits of bankruptcy. The original intent had been to relieve the misery of poor desperate people, but the efficacy of the law still remained in doubt.
As the lesson proceeded, I realized the teacher was calling on the students to explain sections of the bankruptcy code, one section after the other. I could tell by the order in which the teacher was calling on the students that I would probably be called to explain a section somewhere around section 13. I quickly began looking at that section to make sure I would be able to explain the section if the teacher called on me. I had thought I had read every section of the bankruptcy code, but I was surprised to see I was unfamiliar with section 13, which had the unlikely title of "Gospels." I quickly glanced through the section, unsure whether the title of the section was referring to the books of the Bible, or to Gospel music.
I also looked at the next section which covered the subject of "lighthouses." I was amazed that an entire section of the bankruptcy code would be devoted to such a subject. Interested, I quickly scanned the section to try to understand it. It was soon clear to me that lighthouses were given a special standing under bankruptcy law. Apparently no creditor could foreclose on a lighthouse which was part of a bankruptcy estate. Special provisions also protected people who worked in lighthouses.
As the class proceeded, I became aware that someone had entered the room and was standing in front of a wall of books on my right. Books seemed to be on shelves all around the room which now seemed more like a library than a classroom. I immediately knew who the newcomer was: Saint Augustine. He was wearing a tall miter and dressed in rich ecclesiastical garb which hung profusely all the way to his feet. Although he was tall and impressive, he was also quite old and moved slowly.
He seemed to give little attention to the students in the room; instead, he directed himself to the wall of books and began talking lowly about a problem with the way the books were arranged. Each shelf had a piece of masking tape sticking to it, and each piece of tape had written on it the subject matter of the books contained on that shelf. Augustine was standing in front of a shelf which was supposed to contain books about Germany, but he had discovered a book about England, and I also thought I heard him mention something about the English poet, T.S. Eliot. Augustine indicated there should be a special place for these English books on the shelf.
He also seemed concerned about the general disorder of the library; right in front of the bookshelves was a couch with some clutter piled on it. Augustine picked up a small rug lying rolled up on the couch and laid it on the floor. He then arranged four or five items in order on the couch. I noticed one object resembled a porcelain lamp, such as the ones in fairy tales from which genies might emerge.
When Augustine had finished, he turned to walk out of the room, but I didn't want to see him simply leave since being in the actual presence of this man was so extraordinary. I wanted to know more about him. So, as he exited, I stood and followed him out the door.
After he and I walked through the door, we stepped into a spacious cathedral filled with people. The high ponderous walls were built from huge gray stones. We had entered on the side of the cathedral. The sanctuary of the cathedral lay to our right, while the rear of the cathedral stretched to our left. Due to the strangeness of the place, I was somewhat uncertain whether I should continue on with Augustine. I felt drawn to him, as if perhaps it might be possible for me to learn something from him; maybe I could become one of his followers if he would allow me. I might be able to help him with minor duties, and he might be able to teach me. Acting on this thought, I addressed Augustine, and asked him if I could come with him into the church. To my surprise, he immediately told me I was welcome to follow him; he even seemed pleased. However, he didn't waste any time talking to me about it. He immediately turned back to the people in the church.
I had thought he would turn to the right and head toward the front of the cathedral; instead he turned to the left and headed toward the back. There, not far from us, we saw a group of 25-30 poor , black-haired and probably Hispanic women clustered together in a tight group. With me following, Augustine headed straight for the poor women, obviously intending for us to sit there among them.
Dream Commentary of 28 November 2015
I actually dreamed that I saw St. Augustine.
Just as certain members of the Catholic Church sought to pierce the veil of the afterlife, so too do certain members of the Dream Journal.
Which brings to mind the question if the quest to witness the afterlife is a form of worship.
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