Dreaming in the dark

The lights are always on. The Christ­mas tree out­side the shop­ping mall, the lap­top on my desk. But tonight I will leave the lights out and vis­it the dark­ness. Even the moon won’t show her face this night.


An uncom­fort­able word. A word wait­ing for Light. Away with the dark­ness of our igno­rance and evil. The Enlight­en­ment has taught us to think. But ratio­nal, lev­el-head­ed peo­ple don’t under­stand that real­i­ty can be too much for a per­son. They don’t remem­ber how they grew in the dark womb.

Try to leave the lights out.

With­out a screen to watch the relent­less world news on, you can for­get it for a moment. When you’re not chas­ing solu­tions, you can stop for a moment. When it gets light again, what do you want to see? What kind of world do you want to live in? Reflect­ing on your wish­es and desires is what peo­ple tra­di­tion­al­ly did dur­ing the new moon.

Maybe you will hear soft music. The “song of love that leads us out of the maze“1, the “song of long­ing for anoth­er land“2. Let it grow in you. Leave the TV off for a while. A seed needs time to ger­mi­nate and slow­ly push itself upwards. Gen­tly it spreads its roots through the dark soil.

Once above the ground, in “real­i­ty”, your dream seems puny; a seedling that can be pulled out in a blink. But look around you. One by one the green shoots emerge. A sea of long­ing, a mighty for­est. With our inten­tions as a guide, we can change the world3.

It grows in the dark. It starts with the ques­tion, “What do I want?” “What does God want?” “What does the earth want?”, like Eisen­stein writes.1 This com­ing night the moon is dark. A good time to go and meet our longings.

For the inspi­ra­tion for this post I want to thank P. for telling us about Joan­na Macy and Active Hope. He is one of our future co-res­i­dents in Zuiderveld.


  1. Charles Eisen­stein, Cli­mate: A New Sto­ry (2018)
  2. This is from a Dutch children’s song.
  3. This is from a book that I haven’t read yet: Joan­na Macy, Active Hope (2016)
  4. In the Nether­lands, (a lot of) the lights go out for one night per year: The Nacht van de Nacht.