Stairways to Heaven: A Dream Vision.
The dream began with chaos and confusion. Through the cacophony, I managed to gain some control and ask the desk clerk, “Where is Room 512?”
At the same time I was asking, I realized my role in the dream: leader of a class on enlightenment or ascension, and feeling ill-equipped to speak about anything at all.
The clerk answered by pointing her bright-purple, comically long index fingernail toward the ceiling, precisely directing my eyes to a crudely unfinished hole in the plaster, probably 20 feet above our heads.
Our group stared upwards, mumbling our wonderment that she meant our meeting room was through that small, unfinished hole in the ceiling plaster, because we all felt certain that’s what she meant for us to think. I became aware of a small child with our group, and felt all of us simultaneously thinking that even a little child couldn’t fit through that hole!
My dream consciousness thought, but didn’t say, “Seems appropriate to ascension — like birth, an impossibly tight squeeze.” Mustering myself, I addressed the desk clerk again, saying, “Oh, you must mean upstairs. The fifth floor?” She laughed (at us, I thought) and pointed to the stairs.
Our tired group of 20 or so turned to take the stairs. It wasn’t obvious the building even had five floors, because we had entered through a one-story building and followed a hallway so long it reminded me of a going from one gate to another in an international airport.
Concerned for the members in our group, I looked around for an elevator, but finding none and feeling the uselessness of asking the desk clerk for any more information, we started toward the gray steel door marked Fire Stairs.
“Birth by fire, no shit,” I thought to myself, feeling a little more confident in my ability to lead this group. The stairwell was stark, the steel steps plain, the landings small and not the least bit restful. “Very life-like,” I thought to myself, projecting the image of a calm, energetic teacher of wisdom, feeling the truth of a fatigued, frustrated woman of 62.
The child found my hand, worked her small fingers around mine and held on, wide-eyed. I wondered whose child she was. I wondered if she was mine. I wondered if she was me.
We trudged up what seemed like five floors without seeing any doorways. Someone muttered, “This ain’t no stairway to heaven,” and the rest agreed with a smattering of comments, none too happy. “I think we should just go back down and ask the management about Room 512,” said another voice, breathless with exertion. “Ready to quit the ascent, are we?” I thought internally. I said nothing.
Immediately, the stairs made a turn, we arrived at a wide landing, and wouldn’t you know it — a doorway! The group burst into laughter and applause at the implausible serendipity. Relieved, I looked around for markings to indicate this was the fifth floor. There were no markings at all.
The doorway itself was entirely out of place (space and time) compared to the starkness of the fire stairs — wide, ornate double doors, beautiful and heavy. Crowded together, we pushed through and practically fell into a fabulous ballroom of immense proportions.
Stunned, we were immediately surrounded by a group of concerned strangers, all dressed in the finery of their countries and religions.
There were colorful woven cottons from Central America and kente cloth from Africa, deerskin and leathers from North America and Europe, patterns of woven wool from Tibet to Norway to Iceland… and priestly vestments, robes and habits of every description, hijabs and kurtas, saris and dhotis, yarmulke and tallit.
It felt somewhat like Noah’s ark, where two of each sort of person from every culture around the world was represented. Our group was separated by the care and kindness of these incredible humans, each group member swallowed in the sea of beauty we had entered unawares.
The dark eyes of a turbaned Sikh gentleman met my eyes from far across the room as I surveyed the incredible variety of humankind, and I fairly floated through the throng toward him, as if magnetized. The child who may have been me or mine held tight to my fingers, eyes laughing.
The room itself was palatial, with marble columns and a black-and-white marble floor. The flora and fauna of the world were on display too — potted fir trees and palms, nut and fruit trees, and the room so astoundingly large the trees seemed like the potted ferns in a business office.
Many in our group had been introduced to the feast on the long buffet tables, with the delicacies of the world represented. The aroma was intoxicating.
For me, the deep pools of awareness in the eyes of my Sikh gentleman were far more intoxicating. I drew close to him and his lovely wife, both dressed in pure white silk from turban to toe. I felt clumsy and unkempt in their presence, but their eyes conveyed nothing but total acceptance and the purest love and service. We never said a word to each other, but gazed in each other’s eyes, becoming one with no effort.
After a while, with a feathery touch to my elbow, the Sikhs guided me around the room to exchange gazes with hundreds of people from everywhere on Earth.
Suddenly our group was reassembled, as though we had been in a choreographed dance with the throng of beautiful humanity that had so wonderfully welcomed us in. Someone asked, “Is this Room 512?”
Laughter rang out, and my Sikh gentleman pointed up… to a crudely unfinished hole in the plaster of the ceiling! Speaking aloud in a musical voice, he responded, “By entering this place of love and acceptance, you’re a little over halfway there, my loves.”
Sighing, I knew it was time to exit the ballroom of the Earth’s people and continue our journey to Room 512, but I had the sense that everyone in the group realized: the journey to Room 512 was the class on enlightenment and ascension.
Lighter and brighter, refreshed and energized, the group walked through the doorway and back into the stark grayness of the steel stairwell. We were coming down from the mountain-top spiritual experience of being in the ballroom. Everyone was quiet, purposefully climbing. The child began to cry, and we passed her one to the other to quiet her, until she fell asleep in my arms.
I was about to begin crying myself from the burden of carrying her when another door appeared, a plain wooden door, old and smudged with usage, with a crude iron pull instead of a knob. There was no sign of a lock, and once again, no markings to indicate we had finally arrived on the fifth (or fiftieth) floor.
I pulled the door open and immediately shouted, “Watch out!” because the floor appeared to end just a few feet away from the doorway. We crowded together in the dim light of the room and looked around.
The room seemed as vast as all of space. Gradually, I began to make out hundreds, thousands, millions of stairways, some attached to the walls of the room, some floating alone, others connected in all sorts of combinations. The stairways were spiral-like, some wooden, some almost feathery, some like the finest furniture, some crudely built, some like ladders or deck stairs, some appearing like DNA.
The stairways were both remarkably individual and utterly similar, like people. For the briefest nanosecond, a pair of white stairways resembled the Sikh couple in the ballroom, and in that recognition the Light came. Excited, I shouted, “Find your stairway!”
Glancing down into the eyes of the child I still carried, we were one. And looking up for my stairway, I saw the crudely unfinished hole… but no ceiling. It was endless, marvelous Light.
Libby Maxey is a mystic and visionary voyager into the “What If?” She’s a wife, mother, nana, irreverent reverend, writer of books and blogs, transgender advocate, and egalitarian. Libby lives with her adoring twin flame genius husband in small town Tennessee, where they mostly keep their ideas to themselves… except in written form. Her highly-rated book titles I Am Liberty and One Becomes One are available on Amazon.com.