Back in High School there was a teacher who told us that the bottom of the ocean, in its deepest parts, would contain the whole and totally preserved bodies of dinosaurs, whales, and seamen who had been lost. Every shipwreck would be totally intact, except for the damage due to extreme pressure and one day, when our technology permitted, we would be able to open up a whole new world of historic treasures. The ocean floor, she assured us, would be totally devoid of even so much as bacterial life. She was, of course, very wrong, as she was about many of the things she so strongly believed in.
I had a dream one night, long ago, and in the dream I was standing still and I was bathed in flame. Not just some bon-fire for a witch or caught in a burning house fire, but a conflagration that encompassed all that I could see and taste and feel. It was hot, hotter than anything I can remember but there wasn’t a feeling of being burned. It was the same feeling of having a fever; the heat seemed to come from within me, not around me.
The light from the fire was so overwhelming that sight was something akin to echolocation. The picture I received from vision was incomplete and distorted from the heat waves. The shimmering and swaying fire was nearly aquatic in its thickness. Vision failed totally after a very short distance just as it would in water that roils and turns with violence. With all of this, however, I felt grounded and stable. I was able to move within the maelstrom of flame without dizziness or clumsy steps.
Underwater or on land, here on earth, if a human being looks up there will be more light, not less light, yet where I stood the flames and light blasted out of the surface as if flung with alacrity from the core itself. Looking up gave an appearance of less light and looking at my feet was an act that was hurtful to the eyes. With my hands and arms, and to an extent, by body, I threw shadows up into the darkened sky, which was dark only when compared to the fire beneath me.
Were you to travel to a place where everyone was mute and deaf and there were no sounds, how would you, how could you, explain speech and words? If you were blind how could you explain to another person who was blind how facial expressions translate emotions? In a world devoid of all light and in that dark world, how would you explain sight? Put these thoughts into your head, foremost, and then allow me to tell you what it meant to express myself inside the fire.
What fuel burned underneath me I cannot say but with the flame and with the heat, and with the energy that it carried with it, there was something else. With my hands, arms, and to a certain extent, my body, I could deflect, reflect, and cause ripples and eddies in this energy, and with that, sent my thoughts and words out beyond where sight and hearing failed completely.
To whom, or to what, I spoke, I cannot say, but I knew that outside my field of vision and far past what might have been any audio function, the motion of my body and limbs carried everything that my thoughts might reveal. The dancing of the flames was a conversation within a world of fire. Everything here, in these words, and more, very much more, was there. Every breath and movement, every gesture and every shrug, and every slight change in position said something about how I felt.
Is this so hard for you to believe or understand? We humans have been transfixed by those who dance for longer than we have been capable of writing about it. Sexual desire is easily transferred from body to mind yet this is no more to the point than using the internet to look up porn. A writhing body backed by incomprehensible music is one thing but a body set in motion to produce a message backed by sheer emotion is another.
Please, look and feel outside the box of your voice and hearing and outside touch and taste. Was there not a time in your life when you were far too young to allow a song to bring tears to your eyes? As a child you might not have had a song than could bring forth the memories of a love lost yet here you are, as an adult, and now, all alone with your mind and heart, one song floods your mind with emotion and the lost are recovered for just one moment.
Is it so terribly hard for you to feel the energy in the flames, shaped by a heart, flung towards you with emotions, received as eagerly as sent, shaped by the body of a dancer taught since birth, to say the same things as a song?
Look at what you are doing right now and what is happening to you. These words before you were created with a machine and they were sent by a machine, yet it is in your brain where all of this is taking place. My mind has produced the words that your mind has translated. The creatures of the world of fire would think all of this much more unlikely than their own form of communication.
At this point, wouldn’t you have to agree with them?
The dream of fire, I think, was a dream of what it would be like to live on the sun. Teachers in High School right now will tell us that no life could exist there because the conditions are too extreme. Yet I have danced with the people of the sun and they have told me their life is good and their way of life, within the flames, is every bit as wonderful as any lived with a spoken word.
Dance in the light they have sent to you. They will hear you. Tell them you believe they exist and you will discover that you, too, can live in conditions others may doubt can support life. For life to exist, for dreams to become real, to be able to reach out past what we have been taught, we need only to dance to the fire in our own minds.