Natural Dreamwork with Mary Jo

the spiral knife…

Dream – I am looking closely at a knife as a man explains to me how to use it.  Just under the hilt, before the blade itself, the steel is first formed into a beautiful fluid spiral pattern.  

To step into the dreams of another person is a privilege…a sacred privilege…and one I take as such. The above dream, from a few years ago, came after I went to bed asking for help to learn more about the importance of a dream image. The dream was only an image…of the spiral knife…and a man’s voice speaking to me. Upon waking I couldn’t remember what he had said. I wonder often times that we are given teachings in our dreams and then they must first be absorbed…and they need to evolve as they are entrusted to us and become our own. In my dream I was particularly drawn to the spiral at the hilt and the following morning I drew this dream image.
After this dream, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the kartiki, the Buddhist knife that cuts through illusion or the knife in Pullman’s book “The Subtle Knife.” Also known as teleutaia makhaira, the last knife of all, or sahttr, it has the ability to cut through any substance including cutting invisible openings or gateways between the worlds. 
This is what we can learn to do as Natural Dreamwork practitioners, to develop this capacity when we step into another’s dream. We help the dreamers themselves step through gateways or portals into the world of who they are in the deepest sense…the realm of their soul.
The knife for me feels like this capacity for subtle movement…embodied in the spiral…an exquisite sensitivity.  When we enter a dream,  we can learn to move around it as with this sacred instrument…mind quiet, senses open, a willingness to not know, sensitive to a feeling of what the dreamer might be feeling or not feeling…and then there is a moment where we stop and feel more deeply. It may be a word the dreamer used…it may be a word or response that could have been there but isn’t.  We can learn to trust and follow where that felt sense takes us…and then ask about it…inviting the dreamer more deeply into themselves.
There is the capacity of the spiral knife in all of us…the capacity to sense, to respond and to feel into all that wants to be felt…and all that wants to be known by our hearts.
Mary Jo Heyen is a Natural Dreamwork Practitioner working with clients throughout the country and abroad in person, phone or Skype. Learn more about her work with dreams at or 

3 thoughts on “the spiral knife…”

  1. Thank you! Images…and the feelings they carry…are such important teachers in our dreams…and how often we learn so much in the wordless place of an image.

  2. What a perfect image, Mary Jo! As you explore it, with the “exquisite” sensitivity of a deep dreamworker, you cut through the painful (too sharp, violent) associations with knives and to the tender, clean, cutting and penetrating possibilities of a gentle spiral, finding the way in, following the natural shape of the dream, the mind, the heart, the spirit. Blessings on your good work, always.

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