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The Man with the Snake

Dreamed 2002/9/3 by Jenny Badger Sultan

Detail of a painting of a dream by Jenny Badger Sultan. Amid red rocks, a short brown man in pale drapes a snake over his shoulders.

I am in a desert. A man and I are having a contest; we're seeing who can first accomplish a certain feat. Right now we are in the waiting phase, before acting. I am looking around, planning what I might do. I see roundish rocks at intervals among low scrub and I think "I could jump from one rock to another."

He is collecting pieces of wood and arranging them in a circular pile. I think he has a dark snake around his neck.

Then comes the signal "Go!"--to begin the feat. He takes a metal weapon and brings it down on his pile of wood, scattering all the pieces.

"There," he says, "I've won the contest"--in just that brief time! I don't think this is fair, since he used the waiting time to make actual physical preparations, and he used a metal weapon.

I call to him--

"Man with the snake,
man with the snake,
that is unfair."
On the ground I see his snake join with more snakes, more and more. The snakes are gathering together in some kind of a radial or circular configuration.
Painting of a dream by Jenny Badger Sultan. A short brown man, nine snakes and a cat meet in a red rocky desert.
Among them I spot our cat Lulu! Now she's gone, now she reappears. I try to get her out--I'm afraid the snakes will hurt or kill her. Sometimes she scurries off, but then she's right back in there again... as if she wants to be. Maybe she knows what she's doing and won't be hurt.

--Jenny Badger Sultan Detail of a painting of a dream by Jenny Badger Sultan. Amid red rocks, Lulu the cat slips between snakes.


So Lulu keeps barging in over and over, getting Jenny so worried for Lulu's safety she forgets all about a shamanic duel straight out of Castaneda! Funny. "Called on account of rain" I can understand, but "called on account of cat"?

And maybe that's the point of the dream. Whatever Lulu means here--animal sense?--she pulls Jenny off a mental plane focused on competition and (un)fairness, back to a more direct physical/health awareness.

Because dueling a brujo who cheats can really tire you out.

--Chris Wayan

LISTS AND LINKS: deserts and oases - shamans - competition - rudeness and fairness (because your lovably naïve editor forgot a list for cheating) - snakes - cats - focus - guardian angels? - dream-paintings - more Jenny Badger Sultan - Wayan shames a shaman with The Power of Suggestion, then learns the Sonoran Desert's Purpose -

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