See You Soon… 30 Years On, Merlin’s Magical Departure.

 

Almost instantaneously, as the Moon transited Leo in my third house, my lungs besottedly drank the warm and dank, dark air.  Thus I effortlessly drowned into sleep.  Whilst wintry winds howled outside the window, this cold early Saturday morning – November 18, 1989 – my lucid focus seamlessly shifted into the dreamtime. 

I readily knew that I was dreaming. 

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Here, just as moments earlier whilst awake and meditating, Merlin was uppermost in my thoughts.  I could sense his presence.  The shift from one dimension to the other was seamless.  Lucidly self-aware, I was immediately come to in a dream that was set in the bedroom where I slept.

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I was in bed with the artist Olaf Nordstrom – a source of loving support at present in the waking state.  I was lying in bed, leaning on his bony chest, as he sat up in bed.  It was obvious from his body language that he did not want to be in bed with me.  I felt a still and quiet vibration to this dream.  The moment was truly serene and peaceful.  This was not a sexual or post-sexual interlude.  We were both reflective.  It was obvious that we were on the cusp of something momentous.  It was the sort of vibration that signalled that something extraordinary was about to unfold.

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Olaf behaved as if he was uncomfortable being there – it was a grave moment.  He wanted to be there, however, to merely lend his support.  It was obvious that he was wary of my clinging.  Clinging, however, was not my intention.  The moment together was brief – just a preparation for things to come.  With that we parted.  It was time to get up and participate in the events of whatever was to unfold.

This dream was possessed of inordinate lucidity; its every detail and nuance my faculties absorbed with acuity beyond the norm.

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In the second dream, this cold Saturday morning, I found myself in the familiar territory of the Cabbagetown streets where we lived.  I went into a store which does not exist in the waking state.  It sat just south of the Pet Menagerie store, on the east side of Parliament Street, between Amelia and Winchester Streets.

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It was a tailor’s shop that carried rather high-end fabrics.  I was there to pick out some fabric because I had a definite idea of what I wanted to wear to Merlin’s funeral.  I knew that the only way, to get the look that I wanted, was to make the outfit myself.  The kindly, gracious salesman was trying to get me interested in a rather conservative plaid fabric but it simply was not to my liking.  My aversion was not because it was plaid; rather, the tone was too sombre.

He was not insistent but let me know that it was appropriate.  However, I would have none of it; I simply did not like the fabric or the colours.  I simply was not going to have it.  Unable to make up my mind and not wanting to make a decision about fabric, as there were so many ramifications to what it all meant, I left the store stepping into the light of day.  It had been a very dimly lit, nicely wood-panelled, stately shop.

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Once outside, I became acutely aware of Merlin.  I was now returned to the yard of Cabbagetown’s 20 Amelia Street, where we lived, and Merlin was present with me.  Thoughts of Merlin, on leaving the store, had me immediately posited in the front yard of 20 Amelia Street where I happily joined him.  We were watering the lawn even though it was wintertime.  Next door at 18 Amelia Street, where at this point Club Monaco designer Alfred Sung no longer lived, there were lots of potted plants hanging from the lone, purple-leaved, sugar maple tree.

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Merlin was telling me to water the plants.  He then began telling me, rather matter-of-factly, that I had to start taking care of the apartment – I had to make it a home again.  Merlin asked me to start preparing things.  He meant that this was not the time for procrastination.  Of course, moments earlier in the prior dream, I had been procrastinating when down on Parliament Street to pick out fabrics to wear to his funeral.  By avoiding the matter altogether, I had chosen instead to forego the purchase.  As Merlin spoke to me, I became so aware of him that I completely became self-aware – both in the dream and in my sleep whilst in bed at 20 Amelia Street.

I was standing there very intently looking at Merlin.  He, too, was very intently looking at me.  Whilst we were unflinchingly looking into each other, I thought aloud with quiet resignation, ‘Merlin has died.’

I knew, too, that Merlin had heard my thoughts in the dream.

At that moment my sister Pandora da Braga, with whom Merlin enjoyed the best relations of anyone else in my life, suddenly became a presence in the dream.  She never fully became physically manifested but her energies became overwhelmingly strong.  Her energies were just to my rear as she played a loving and supportive role.

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Suddenly, introspectively, I recalled a dream which I had had earlier in the week.  With everything moving so quickly, in the waking state – with little time to collect my thoughts, let alone overlong time to record any dreams- it had slipped by unrecalled on awakening.  However, now it was not merely being recalled, it was being relived in its entirety.  I stood there and as I recalled the dream, rather seamlessly, I actually entered the dream which was being reanimated as it was being holographically recalled.

Within the reanimated dream being recalled and relived, I was again on the lawn at 20 Amelia Street in the warmth of the Sun’s rays.  Just as in today’s dream, I was on the front lawn facing due north and the house with 18 Amelia Street on the left to the west.  As Merlin and I were visiting in the outer dream of today, I had turned my body.  Being in the same physical position had triggered the recall and reanimation of the dream from the past week.

To my left, I saw an incredibly ancient-looking, wise being who progressed across the lawn.  The slowness of his progression was so measured that one’s experience of time, in the reanimated and recalled dream, progressed outside of time itself.  It was simply magical to experience the progression of the very ancient and mystical being.  The millennia-ancient figure progressed across the lawn, of 18 Amelia Street, heading towards our home at 20 Amelia Street.  The being was male and small in stature; he was hobbit-like.  His head was large, disproportionately large, compared to his tiny, frail-bodied frame.

He could not have been more than four feet tall.  His head was absolutely massive.  His forehead arched up and was high like an African’s.  Too, his head was elongated in the back, reminiscent of Pharaoh Akhenaten’s skull.  More striking than the majesty with which the august being progressed outdoors, towards our home at 20 Amelia Street, was the look of his face.

It was simply magical.  From beneath the translucent skin, soft yellow-white light escaped revealing his very visible aura.  Nothing but pure love, along with the same nonjudgmental look that ever peered back from Merlin’s eyes to mine, radiated from this being.  The love radiating from the being towards me was awesome, immense – intense.  The great being’s progress was purposeful.  He was on a mission; he was unstoppable.  The process had begun.

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I was struck by the uncanny resemblance, which the face of this being bore, to the planet-being in the skies of Sandy Point, St. Kitts in a momentous dream during September 1983.  It was a dream whose potency and beauty would lay unfathomable for years to come.  The being progressed as though levitating mere millimetres above the rather zingy, extra-green grass of the lawns at both 18 and 20 Amelia Street.  Though he did not pause as he progressed, the radiant being did turn and look at me.  As though he was familiar with me, he acknowledged me by slightly nodding.  However, he continued on towards our home.

He moved past me as I stood there, still and silent, drinking in the majesty of the experience.  At soul-centre we were familiar to each other.  I knew him.  He knew me.  I stood, alone and awestruck, in the front yard being refamiliarised by the vibration of his beauty as the effect of his potent powers spatially affected the dream.  As he moved past, I was reminded of the film The Dark Crystal, by Jim Henson – with whom Merlin had worked, directing two episodes of the Fraggle Rock television series in its inaugural season.  This movie would for several months, after we saw it together in New York City, be our favourite film.

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Thereafter for several weeks, whenever we looked at each other – even when not being intimate, we had hummed at each other as the rival beings in the film did when communicating.  The being here was much like the good beings in the Jim Henson film The Dark Crystal.  The being progressed up the few stone steps, to the wooden veranda at 20 Amelia Street, and began making his way inside the house.  As I watched him ascend, from the lawn to the veranda, it was clear to me that he was levitating.  Though it was a dream and I too could have levitated and flown, he though had a power which surpassed mine.

This august-souled, mystical being clearly originated from a dimension which vibrationally and spiritually was of a higher plane than the astral, where the dream occurred, and the physical in which I am incarnate.  Indeed, the same physical plane from which Merlin was rapidly taking his leave – it was that discernible.  The moment the mystical being entered our home, being lost to view, I came to from the inner holographic dream which was a recall and reanimation of a dream that I had experienced within the last week.  As I came to, I was about to go indoors to see what had become of the being that had clearly entered our home.

It was then, having returned to being fully focussed in the outer ‘shell’ dream of today November 18, 1989, that I saw Merlin anew.  He was standing at the front door looking out at me.  I stood there, in the front yard, transfixed whilst the bright daylight bathed my body throughout.  The look on Merlin’s face was purely transcendent.  He was perfectly still and perfectly radiant.  Merlin stood in the midst of a nimbus of dazzling, blue-white light.  As he lovingly glowed out at me, this splendid light only intensified.

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Merlin was transformed and as his face lovingly lit up, at me, the light grew to more completely envelop his body.  Whilst lovingly glowing at me with the warmest, most familiar knowing smile, Merlin slowly brought his right hand up with the palm facing me and more completely smiled.  The radiance of his smile soon became lost in the glow of his aura’s light.  The nimbus, enveloping his transformed body, radiated even more intensely at that point.

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I was blown away.  Arrested, I readily knew what I was experiencing; I could feel it.  I knew that across dimensions, in the waking state, Merlin had just died.

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However, as is my wont, I protested.  I dropped the hose which was still bleeding its nurturing water onto the frozen, wintry lawn at my feet.  I stood – paralysed.  Determinedly, I then bolted for Merlin.  I headed up to the veranda as my lover, as my mentor, as my friend stood transcendent in the doorway to what had been the most beautiful sense of home ever experienced.  “Merlin!” shrieking in protest, I yelled out his name.

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(Detail of oil on canvas by my sister Pandora of Toronto’s Mount Pleasant Cemetery where Merlin is buried.)

Suddenly, the thunder of my protesting breath abruptly drew me from sleep.  I sat upright in bed, my arms outstretched and beyond, after having crashed back into my body and no longer astral-projected.  From the foot of the bed both cats – Zora and Whoopi – knowingly, silently looked up.  I was arrested by the frozen horror-struck face staring at me from the mirrored closet doors across the room. 

In the near-darkness of the bedroom, a few rays of early morning light made it past the blood-red, velvet drapes heavily hung at the windows.  Those rays starkly cast light on how horribly desolate my life now was.  Merlin was gone.  His spirit had taken leave from this world.  It was that discernible as my world, my very universe, had experienced a massive vibrational shift. 

I had been abruptly displaced from the astral plane.  I had been lucidly dreaming a dream within a dream.  I was being told so long as Merlin, transitioned from incarnate to astral plane habitué, bade farewell to our magically glorious union on the physical plane.  I was heartened by the peace and knowingness in his transcendent face because I knew that it was a, “See you soon…” parting, for now. 

I knew that there would be dreams aplenty up ahead.  Just as he had pledged, he would magically weave in his indelible promise to me, before departing from the physical plane.  There was such a cold silence, a stinging finality to the moment, as I sat there in bed.  After having looked back at myself, silently waiting, I placed a call to the eighth storey nursing station at Wellesley Hospital. 

I was immediately aware that the tone of the nurses, with whom I was by now long-familiar, had changed.  In very little time, it was official… Merlin had indeed passed.  Truth be told, it was not a surprise; I could sense it on awaking.  He simply was not there.  As always, I had reached out to sense him on awaking – his energies – just blocks away at Wellesley Hospital.  Now, there was nothing. 

Then, as if needing further proof, I thought about Merlin calling each morning.  He would do so, to lovingly say hello and thereby, to lovingly wake me up.  Merlin would then lovingly ask for a call-back, after I had audio-recorded the dreams.  Merlin had, thus far, not called.  Once again, I saw the stillness of my reflection across the room.  I knew then, really knew…  Merlin was gone.  

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As ever thanks for your ongoing support but if you really want to make me levitate then do buy my books!

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© 2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.

The Fawn… It Definitely Was A Miracle.

Merlin Christmas 88

On this the eve of what would have proven Merlin’s 72nd birthday, I share these rather totemic dreams.  This November 18, 2019 marks the 30th anniversary of Merlin’s passing of full-blown AIDS, on a cold November Saturday morning when icy snowflakes aimlessly drifted across the city streets.  Whilst at dinner recently, a dear friend asked if I am never saddened at the loss of Merlin and if I ever do miss him. Of course, as I write this blog, I am warmed by the fact that on December 2, 2006 – almost 13 years ago, Merlin was reincarnated in a canalled northern European city.  Merlin is now female and the third of three children – two older brothers. 

What’s more, Merlin reborn has eyes that would now be even more phenomenal than when last I gazed besotted and rhapsodic into those large, soulful hazel eyes.  Whereas Merlin was on his sixth life as a seventh level mature scholar soul, now reincarnated and female that soul is now living its first incarnation as a first level old scholar. These next dreams were dreamt in May, 1989 when Merlin was then still incarnate and at that point, he daily listened to the audiocassette recording of my dreams.  This he did because they fascinated him; more than that, he did so because ever the director, he was keen to give insight and direction. 

“Come on, Arvin, you have to be more descriptive.  I have no idea if the car was blue, green, for that matter a convertible and was it a tan or white leather interior?” 

Certainly, it can never be underestimated the pivotal role that Merlin played in the depth and thoroughness of the audiocassette recorded dreams.  He was ever a loving but tough taskmaster and happy am I to have had his loving input and direction. After having listened to the recorded dream being now shared herein, Merlin came to dinner at our 20 Amelia Street home and declared, “Well, let’s not get too caught up in trying to interpret and figure out the symbolism of those dreams.”  After, he winked, we softly kissed; his lips as ever warm and full as internally an unrelenting disease determinedly consumed his body… but never alas his spirit. 

These were potent, lucid astral plane dreams.  To say that they were totemic would be understating fact.  The dreams were a glimpse beyond the veil as Merlin shamanically wound down another incarnation and got ready to put to rest another life. Ever focussed on my spiritual maturation, I am immensely proud to have survived so long after Merlin’s passing.  Had anyone wagered that I would be still in the game 30 years later, I would have said, “You are reading the wrong tea leaves.”  

Well, here I am still shaking arse and the Rathore to the core.  These totemic dreams were dreamt on Monday, May 22, 1989, audiocassette recorded on tape IX of the 250 audiocassette recording of my dreams and yet to be found in Volume one the 25 Volume dream opus. Too, at the time, the Moon then transited both Sagittarius and my seventh house – wherein my natal Moon is posited.  Truly few are they who are brave enough to drink from the chalice that is life. 

Your support and choice to be focussed herein are both humbling and a source of inordinate pride.  I am immensely grateful. Sweet dreams and as ever do remember, death is just a shift in focus; one is merely focussed at a different frequency.  Besides, as one rather beguiling astral plane habituée put it, “Trust me, death is not wasted on the living.”  

Dreams serve as the most expedient conduit for sustaining the bonds and communion of souls between persons who are no longer focussed in the physical plane but refocussed on the astral plane between lives as astral plane habitués whilst resting, reviewing and weaving the tapestry of future incarnations.  So, drink and live in the moment.  Take a deep breath, open your eyes within – don’t be afraid – and there within the silken folds of self is the massive beauty which is spirit.. go on explore and discover the true you.  I love you more. 

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Montpelier Plantation Nevis

The first dream found me posited on a hilltop looking down into a valley which then rose up into a lower hill.  From the vantage of the mountains in Sandy Point, St. Kitts or Nevis, the view was of being down towards the ocean.  Topographically, it seemed more like St. Kitts – however, this was definitely set in Nevis.  I looked out and what did I see but a house on this hill; it was a very huge and lovely house.

Down from the sky, before the house on the rolling plains, fell a column of white light that shimmered.  The manifesting light had the power of a tornado and it was a force that moved… it undulated.  Truth be told, this was a liquefied white light – not unlike a waterspout.  As compared to the left and right sides of the shaft, it was as though the centre of the light was faded.  The centre of the column of light seemed invisible but it wasn’t.  As a matter of fact, it was sort of greyish-coloured.  

*A very fleeting dream this was but it was one that was potent.  The sky overhead was ominously dark as though the cloud cover was simply to mask something else.  There was no getting around the fact that the light was used as some sort of transport or conveyance.  The light was being used for the relay of energies between the house’s occupants, if there were any, and whatever was beyond the clouds.

The dream seemed to have abruptly collapsed because I had happened on the scene.  There was no one else about.  Too, it was the only house on the landscape.  I felt as though I had been ejected, from the dream, for having been there and witnessed what I wasn’t supposed to have been privy to.  The dream collapsed around me; I was deprived any further knowledge of what was going on.  In light of the dream that would follow, it became fairly obvious that the light column was channelling.

Eventually, the astra-human soul quality of Merlin’s would quite potently manifest.  Of course, just as in the dream of Thursday, July 7, 1988VI, again, there was a lone house on the landscape.  As will become evident, in later moments of the dreams, Merlin’s soul quality would manifest.  END.

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Satiro de Aaron Sims

The next dream immediately found me in bed with Merlin.  He got up and he looked very old.  Looking very tired and old, he turned around to me then went out into the hallway.  He turned around and asked me, “When are you going to start moving on because I’d like to die by the end of this year?  When are you going to go back to school?  I’m really tired of this; I’m tired of this illness… I just want to move on.”

He was terribly impatient.  Indeed, Merlin here was very forceful.  That was when he began shapeshifting; Merlin underwent a metamorphosis before my eyes.  He became, as he spoke, more impatient.  I watched spellbound as his physiology morphed into the very astral-looking faun – though elfin-looking, he was taller than his known humanoid self; Merlin became the archetypal Chiron.  I started crying sounding real childlike and said, “No… no!  Please, please don’t!”

His face then became part of the pink walls, thus his transformed face was flesh-toned.  Here his face looked faunlike; his eyes were on the sides.  He had the face of a faun and I only ever saw the right eye.  The eye was black-within-black.  The eye looked down at me because the head – which was the only thing visible when mounted – was up on the wall.  Shapeshifted, Merlin’s was a very hard-looking eye.

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Merlin’s eye rapaciously looked right into the soul.  An ancient eye it was.  I caressed the softness of the fur-like skin and pleaded with him and said, “Please, I can’t live without you.  I couldn’t go on.  Please don’t lose your strength and get ill,” I pleaded with the shapeshifted Merlin and cried.  I was aware of being here in bed asleep whilst dreaming and that my body was going through the motions of crying and being pained.  Merlin did not hear me, although, I thought that as I slept that I was talking aloud in my sleep.

*This was an intensely upsetting dream because it dramatised how Merlin wished to be allowed to move on.  He no longer cared to be focussed in the life.  Though it was obvious that he could have soldiered on for months more, he simply lost the desire to go on being focussed.  Clearly, this was owing to the bilious discord created by Tytanikka and Oleg’s betrayal.

Though he never physiologically resembled the classic centaur, Merlin’s face not only further morphed becoming like a fawn’s, more accurately, his head and face did have the eventual shape of a young bison’s – very Taurean, strong and potent.

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On preparing for the video to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Merlin’s birth back in 2017, I decided then to head off to the costumer, Malabar on McCaul Street where artist and lover George Hawken lived in the late 80s to early 90s.  Inspired by the first dream of Merlin had 41 years ago in July 1978, I decided to get a cowl as a tribute to the cowl Merlin wore in the inaugural dream encounter with him, four years before having met on Friday, October 1, 1982 in New York City.  So, there was I at Mount Pleasant Cemetery on Saturday, July 15, 2017 in my cowl and the panama hat purchased at Versailles to escape the heat.  I thought it fitting as Merlin always loved wearing panama hats.

My trusty friend, J.J. who happens to be an artisan entity mate whom I have known in 20 past lives –- which is a high incidence of contact -– was the director.  Initially, I had hoped to throw a white party on the lawn to the southwest of the chapel at Mount Pleasant Cemetery and have a drone film the event where a gathering of friends would raise a glass to Merlin on the anniversary of his ennobled birth.  Merlin always threw a white party each year for his birthday at his parents’ stunning backyard in north Toronto’s Servington Crescent.

The plan was not approved by the cemetery and thus, one had to improvise.  I got my panama hat and my cowl and together, we proceeded with a dozen long-stem white roses to visit Merlin’s resting place.  I had a pretty good idea what I was after.  With the matching white cowl, I wanted to evoke the magic of meeting Merlin in that initial dream which is shared in volume one of the dream memoirs, which is already published: Merlin and Arvin: A Shamanic Dream Odyssey.  

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Get your copy!  Thanks as ever for your support!

In the hardcover edition of human civilisation’s first dream memoirs, the initial dream encounter with Merlin is shared.  The dream begins on page 110 in the hardcover edition.  I wanted the same sense of wonderment and magic that I felt for having met Merlin in that first dream four years prior to having met reflected in the video.  In that dream, Merlin’s appearance was preceded by a white totemic creature which seemed, in its astral plane outréness, to be part Russian wolfhound, part alpaca, part dog.  

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So, moving to the lawn, having descended the steps of the chapel, I began walking across the open lawn towards the statuesque lion-festooned mausoleum with the five remaining white long-stem white roses.  Seven roses, of course, were left at Merlin’s grave -– one rose for each of our seven glorious years together.  As I stepped onto the lawn, it seemed magical… timeless even.  Slowly, confidently as I approached the filmmaker at the other end of the lawn, I thought of Merlin and that initial dream.  

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Just then, I very distinctly thought of Merlin greeting me by purring, “Hello Lambs.”  As if right on cue, from off stage left, an adult deer came from behind the bushes and tombstones that line the far edges of the open lawn.  Never before had I seen a deer at Mount Pleasant Cemetery.  Indeed, the good burghers of Forest Hill who clearly regularly jogged in the park-like setting stopped and were overheard remarking that they had never seen a deer in the cemetery before.  All that I could do was tear up and continue walking as the deer then bolted and ran from stage left to right as I continued my stride uninterrupted –- unfazed by the appearance of an adult deer on the grounds of the cemetery.  What is more astounding, is that J.J. at the time was filming my walk; at the last minute, I decided against a run-through as I was concerned about the natural light possibly changing if we were to rehearse the shot.  

Unbeknownst to me, the deer after having made it to stage right, then returned to the centre of the lawn and stood there perfectly still whilst observing my progression across the lawn.  J.J. who was astounded by the occurrence remarked that he had just witnessed a miracle.   There is no doubt in my mind as I tried to recapture the magic of that initial dream encounter that there was a subtle validation of that dream from the magical shaman himself on the other side by having had Merlin’s spirit step in as director emeritus and had the deer enter the shot as validation and a token of his appreciation of the love that we shared and my steadfast loyalty to him.  After crossing the lawn and turning to watch the deer stand there, looking down the lawn at me, I felt such utter peacefulness and abandonment of spirit — just as when alone and intimate in the dark with Merlin.  

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Yes, I believe in magic as did Merlin and as though an appreciation of having stridently done everything to fulfil his mandate to me, Merlin’s astral body conjure up the same magic here and now as he had in July 1978 –- four years before slipping inside a Hell’s Kitchen walk-up and readily winning me over with his sexy elfin charm, magic and sex that proved the most grounding shamanic passion… every time.  Standing there, I was reminded, too, of that dream in 1989 before Merlin passed wherein he shape-shifted and became a fawn-like creature who morphed and became one with the wall in our Cabbagetown home.  

All the music chosen for this 13-minute video is music that Merlin loved whilst incarnate and to which he returned time and again -– whether at Joe Morton’s tiny Upper West Side apartment in autumn of 1983, Toronto’s 20 Amelia Street in tony Cabbagetown.  From Glenn Gould’s mastery of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations, to Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight and Dionne Warwick singing That’s What Friends Are For –- in that segment of the video, I included friends whom Merlin valued: Kareem Benezra, myself, Wayne Robson and his oldest and most loyal friend, the ever-gracious, Maxime Gascoigne-de Montigny.

Of course, for Stevie Wonder’s Isn’t She Lovely, I exclusively included photos of Merlin and his very handsome and gracious father, David Ben-Daniel.  Whereas I favoured Sir Paul McCartney’s Hey Jude, Merlin ever loved George Harrison and especially My Sweet Lord.  Of course, one Saturday, whilst staying at actor, Joe Morton’s Manhattan apartment, when Merlin and I secretly committed to being together, we slow-danced to Supertramp and Roger Hodgson’s unmatched magical vocals on Supertramp’s Breakfast In America.

Additionally, Jeffrey Osborne’s On the Wings of Love which was one of Merlin’s favourite ballads is also included.  Merlin loved Black male soul singers: Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye, Jeffrey Osborne –- most especially –- George Benson, Al Green, Teddy Pendergrass, Donny Hathaway, Barry White.  Most of all, I am especially proud of the video that J.J. and I have created; I think that it masterfully captures the depth of my love and fealty to the most fabulously magical shaman encountered on this incarnation’s spiritual odyssey.

Naturally, before having left for Mount Pleasant Cemetery, I had flooded my apartment with the music that appears in the video.  Perhaps, unwittingly by so doing, I was invoking Merlin’s spirit, which later joined us when he played ultimate director and pulled off the most magical bit of stage direction –- an adult deer in the middle of a cemetery in the heart of mid-town Toronto.  Lastly, I played the sublimely soulful Shirley Horn’s interpretation of, Here’s to Life!  Whilst raising a glass of coconut water, I had forgotten to pick up some champagne the evening prior and it was too early in the morning to find champagne anywhere –- the lighting was way too good.  Besides who knows if that magical deer would have been anywhere about.

Here’s to life… most of all, here’s to Merlin… here’s to dream shamans everywhere!

Merlin & Arvin 1987

Merlin’s mandate to me ever remains:

“Please my darling, I want you to write about our lives together.  I promise you, however possible, I am going to send you dreams to include in the story of our love… our lives together.”

Of course, there is my Instagram account:  Instagram Arvin da Brgha

The YouTube channel is:  Arvin da Brgha YouTube

For now, here’s to life, here’s to you and thanks so much for your ongoing support all these years!

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©2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.

Here’s to Life! A celebration of the 70th anniversary of Merlin’s birth.

 

On this the eve of the July 21, 2017, 70th anniversary of Merlin’s birth, I am still over the moon and greatly inspired for having travelled to London, England, Paris and Versailles France and Amsterdam, the Netherlands in June.  I wanted to take in the pomp and pageantry of trooping the colour, revisit the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, the British Museum, the National Portrait Gallery, Tate Britain, Tate Modern… and did!  I really loved my visit to the new wing of the Tate Modern and the beautiful panoramic views that it affords of the north bank across River Thames.

Staying in the beautiful SW10, I had a great place to stay and had a marvellous time.  Great it was to revisit Westminster Abbey, feeling the sense of history and the grandeur of the abbey.  Every moment of being in London was sheer magic.  This city, more than any other, readily evokes a sense of home –- somehow, in its magical agedness, there vibrationally is something perfectly harmonised about London with aspects of the West Indies into which I chose to reincarnate and where my sense of ‘home’ is grounded.

The LGBT exhibition at Tate Britain was a bit underwhelming; however, I enjoyed being exposed to the many female artists and their Lesbian-themed art, which heretofore I was not cognisant of.  Naturally, the male perspective has always been prominent in homoerotic art.  Without doubt, the best exhibition was at the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace and the Crown’s exhibition of aspects of the Canaletto collection.  Naturally, I did have to return to the National Gallery to take in my favourite Sir Anthony van Dycks in their collection; among them, that ode to sage essence grandeur, King Charles I’s Equestrian Portrait of Charles I.  The Rotunda at Ranelagh remains my favourite and most moving Canaletto; of course, it did prominently feature at the end of a flying dream, during early pubescence, that had me dreamquest to a past life in London, England.

That past-life was shared with Merlin when we were musicians at court in late 18th century London.  During that lifetime, we knew 1st Duke of Brontë, Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson.  Apparently, Viscount Nelson was a great raconteur and it was likely his tales of his love of Nevis which proved the seed that eventually led to my choice at the level of soul to have reincarnated into Nevis –- which incidentally Canadians are wont to mispronounce as Knévis…  Sorry, the third world natives are not wrong; besides no one in London would ever think to say, Knévis.  The correct pronunciation is Kneevis… Knévis is no more correct than is Kanarda the correct pronunciation of Canada.  Enough about the risible ignorance of elitist petit bourgeois Canadians and their need to forever condescend.

So, there was I arrived in London with umbrella, pea coat, raincoat and it was all hotter-than-hell climes for the two weeks!  After trooping the colour, I decided to escape the heat of London and decamp à Paris… what was I thinking; goodness, it was at least 5 degrees hotter there!  Alas, Paris has become an armed camp -– I suppose this is what Paris during the Nazi occupation in WWII was like.  Either way, I could not wait to hightail it out of there.  Firstly, though, I had to head off to Versailles where previously I had not been.  Goodness, what grandeur -– the scales are truly phenomenal.  If I had ever had a dream set on the grounds of Versailles, it is highly likely that I would have awakened and assumed that I had just dreamquested to a marvellous world where the architectural scales surpass anything witnessed here on Earth.

In all that heat, I was told it was just a stroll away from the entry gates of Versailles to Grand Trianon to take in the Pierre Le Grand exhibition celebrating the 300th anniversary of Peter the Great’s trip to Paris.  Finally, after 50 minutes in my brand-new Crockett & Jones wellingtons, I arrived to what was not an especially impressive show.  However, the last piece — a beautiful bust of the Tsar — made my sweaty and blistered foot ordeal worthwhile.

After having been quite underwhelmed by Paris –- save of course my visit to Père Lachaise cemetery where I left pine cone tributes to Marcel Proust, Chopin, Oscar Wilde and Honoré de Balzac –- it was off to Amsterdam.  Finally, I had escaped hellish climes!  Amsterdam proved the most gloriously idyllic experience.  With a cool welcome breeze off the North Sea, the temps were in the low 20s and, of course, everywhere just about everyone rode a bike.  As I made the pilgrimage to the Rijksmuseum to be richly inspired, I was warmed as passing cyclists called out to me in my white panama hat that I purchased at Chateau de Versailles to beat the heat, “Hello!”  “Hi there!”  “Hi ya!”  This excursion to Amsterdam was truly soul-warming.  Nothing was more glorious than entering that salon and seeing Night Watch and the Meager Company.

Whilst browsing, I thought of George Hawken and wondered if ever he had made it to Amsterdam.  Just like that, on coming around the corner, the first painting I noticed in the salon which contains Jan Vermeer’s The Milkmaid, was an exquisite, stunning still-life of white asparagus.  The one legume that George considered the perfect signature to a fine meal -– cooked by himself -– was asparagus.  His most memorable meals ever featured asparagus coated in the most sublime sauces made from scratch.  I was truly warmed on seeing the still-life seconds after nostalgically thinking of him.  Yet another moment of synchronicity.

On preparing for the video to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Merlin’s birth, I decided last week to head off the costumer, Malabar on McCaul Street where George lived in the late 80s to early 90s.  Inspired by the first dream of Merlin had 39 years ago in July 1978, I decided to get a cowl as a tribute to the cowl Merlin wore in the inaugural dream encounter with him, four years before having met on Friday, October 1, 1982 in New York City.  So, there was I at Mount Pleasant Cemetery last Saturday, July 15, 2017 in my cowl and the panama hat purchased at Versailles to escape the heat.  I thought it fitting as Merlin always loved wearing panama hats.

My trusty friend, J.J. who happens to be an artisan entity mate whom I have known in 20 past lives –- which is a high incidence of contact -– was the director.  Initially, I had hoped to throw a white party on the lawn to the southwest of the chapel at Mount Pleasant Cemetery and have a drone film the event where a gathering of friends would raise a glass to Merlin on the anniversary of his ennobled birth.  Merlin always threw a white party each year for his birthday at his parents stunning backyard in north Toronto’s Servington Crescent.

The plan was not approved by the cemetery and thus, one had to improvise.  I got my panama hat and my cowl and together, we proceeded with a dozen long-stem white roses to visit Merlin’s resting place.  I had a pretty good idea what I was after.  With the matching white cowl, I wanted to evoke the magic of meeting Merlin in that initial dream which is shared in volume one of the dream memoirs which is already published: Merlin and Arvin: A Shamanic Dream Odyssey.

Get your copy!  Thanks as ever for your support!

In the hardcover edition of human civilisation’s first dream memoirs, the initial dream encounter with Merlin is shared.  The dream begins on page 110 in the hardcover edition.  I wanted the same sense of wonderment and magic that I felt for having met Merlin in that first dream four years prior to having met reflected in the video.  In that dream, Merlin’s appearance was preceded by a white totemic creature which seemed, in its astral plane outréness, to be part Russian wolfhound, part alpaca, part dog.

So, moving to the lawn, having descended the steps of the chapel, I began walking across the open lawn towards the statuesque lion festooned mausoleum with the five remaining white long-stem white roses.  Seven roses, of course, were left at Merlin’s grave -– one rose for each of our seven glorious years together.  As I stepped onto the lawn, it seemed magical… timeless even.  Slowly, confidently as I approached the filmmaker at the other end of the lawn, I thought of Merlin and that initial dream.

Just then, I very distinctly thought of Merlin greeting me by purring, “Hello Lambs.”  As if right on cue, from off stage left, an adult deer came from behind the bushes and tombstones that line the far edges of the open lawn.  Never before had I seen a deer at Mount Pleasant Cemetery.  Indeed, the good burghers of Forest Hill who clearly regularly jogged in the park-like setting stopped and were overheard remarking that they had never seen a deer in the cemetery before.  All that I could do was tear up and continue walking as the deer then bolted and ran from stage left to right as I continued my stride uninterrupted –- unfazed by the appearance of an adult deer on the grounds of the cemetery.  What is more astounding, is that J.J. at the time was filming my walk; at the last minute, I decided against a run-through as I was concerned about the natural light possibly changing if we were to rehearse the shot.

Unbeknownst to me, the deer after having made it to stage right, then returned to the centre of the lawn and stood there perfectly still whilst observing my progression across the lawn.  J.J. who was astounded by the occurrence remarked that he had just witnessed a miracle.   There is no doubt in my mind as I tried to recapture the magic of that initial dream encounter that there was a subtle validation of that dream from the magical shaman himself on the other side by having had Merlin’s spirit step in as director emeritus and had the deer enter the shot as validation and a token of his appreciation of the love that we shared and my steadfast loyalty to him.  After crossing the lawn and turning to watch the deer stand there, looking down the lawn at me, I felt such utter peacefulness and abandonment of spirit — just as when alone and intimate in the dark with Merlin.

Yes, I believe in magic as did Merlin and as though an appreciation of having stridently done everything to fulfil his mandate to me, Merlin’s astral body conjure up the same magic here and now as he had in July 1978 –- four years before slipping inside a Hell’s Kitchen walk-up and readily winning me over with his sexy elfin charm, magic and sex that proved the most grounding shamanic passion… every time.

All the music chosen for this 13-minute video is music that Merlin loved whilst incarnate and to which he returned time and again -– whether at Joe Morton’s tiny Upper West Side apartment in autumn of 1983, Toronto’s 20 Amelia Street in tony Cabbagetown.  From Glenn Gould’s mastery of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations, to Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight and Dionne Warwick singing That’s What Friends Are For –- in that segment of the video, I included friends whom Merlin valued: Kareem Benezra, myself, Wayne Robson and his oldest and most loyal friend, the ever-gracious, Maxime Gascoigne-de Montigny.

Of course, for Stevie Wonder’s Isn’t She Lovely, I exclusively included photos of Merlin and his very handsome and gracious father, David Ben-Daniel.  Whereas I favoured Sir Paul McCartney’s Hey Jude, Merlin ever loved George Harrison and especially My Sweet Lord.  Of course, one Saturday, whilst staying at actor, Joe Morton’s Manhattan apartment, when Merlin and I secretly committed to being together, we slow-danced to Supertramp and Roger Hodgson’s unmatched magical vocals on Supertramp’s Breakfast In America.

Additionally, Jeffrey Osborne’s On the Wings of Love which was one of Merlin’s favourite ballads is also included.  Merlin loved Black male soul singers: Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye, Jeffrey Osborne –- most especially –- George Benson, Al Green, Teddy Pendergrass, Donny Hathaway, Barry White.  Most of all, I am especially proud of the video that J.J. and I have created; I think that it masterfully captures the depth of my love and fealty to the most fabulously magical shaman encountered on this incarnation’s spiritual odyssey.

Naturally, before having left for Mount Pleasant Cemetery, I had flooded my apartment with the music that appears in the video.  Perhaps, unwittingly by so doing, I was evoking Merlin’s spirit which later joined us when he played ultimate director and pulled off the most magical bit of stage direction –- an adult deer in the middle of a cemetery in the heart of mid-town Toronto.  Lastly, I played the sublimely soulful Shirley Horn’s interpretation of, Here’s to Life!  Whilst raising a glass of coconut water, I had forgotten to pick up some champagne the evening prior and it was too early in the morning to find champagne anywhere –- the lighting was way too good.  Besides who knows if that magical deer would have been anywhere about.

Here’s to life… most of all, here’s to Merlin… here’s to dream shamans everywhere!

Merlin & Arvin 1987

Going forward, please know that this wordpress joint: http://www.dreampoetica.com is being synchronised with my author page: http://www.arvindabrgha.com  Everything that’s appeared here over the years, now can be found there.  In coming weeks, there will also be other links to other sites associated with this celebration of Merlin and his mandate to me:

“Please my darling, I want you to write about our lives together.  I promise you, however possible, I am going to send you dreams to include in the story of our love… our lives together.”

Of course, there is my Instagram account:  Instagram Arvin da Brgha

The YouTube channel is:  Arvin da Brgha YouTube

Do please be patient and stay tuned as there will be a site where one can purchase merchandise that’ll greatly assist with the costs of having overleaves channelled that will yet appear in the five volumes of human civilisation’s first dream memoirs to come.  Also, there will be a podcast link.

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For now, here’s to life, here’s to you and thanks so much for your ongoing support all these years!

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