Friday, August 14, 2009

The Wheel of Multiple Histories


Peregrine Cafe at Eastern Market. The best. Really, the best. Tastes as good as it looks

Like many lovers of modern physics, I am a fan of Richard Feynman, who showed, by way of some mighty fancy equations during the 1960's, that particles travel from one location to another along every path through spacetime. Yes, every path. There really is never a single story or a single truth. All stories are true. From this set of ideas came a cascade of other theories about alternate realities, alternate universes. Ultimately "M theory" came into being. I love M theory so much because that description resonates perfectly and exactly with my experience of the world.

I was thinking about M theory last night in conjunction with the idea of luck. Maybe a lucky streak is a time when in some way or another we make the leap to a more fortunate reality, a reality in which things swing our way with slightly more ease. Do you think I could be on to something? I do. And I think there's something about the physics of turning, spinning, whirling, circling, that might be a part of how that happens.


"S Curve" - the mirrored sculpture by Anish Kapoor in the lobby of the Sackler

In my dream last night: Hammer and I have stayed up way too late, sitting around on what we have decided is a round skylight. It is slightly elevated from ground level, maybe 3 feet or so, and about 15 feet in diamter. Beneath the skylight (we think) is one of the Smithsonian museums. The round thing has many panes of glass but we can't see through them. It's night. We're hanging out on the round thing, drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes.

(We're smoking Marlboros - which is truly a different reality since I have never smoked cigs and I don't think Hammer has either, not to mention the fact that at night I never drink coffee. With Hammer, it's almost always beer, not coffee. But of course this is a dream.)

At some point, we have fallen asleep because the next thing I know in the dream, we're being awakened by the anonymous yet eager dream people who have come to take their quantum ride. "What?" we're saying, blinking in the bright light of morning. It turns out the round thing is some kind of supersonic merry-go-round that takes the riders to a similar, but alternate reality. The panes of glass slide back to reveal nice cushioned seats beneath them. The people climb in, excited and chatting to each other.

Instead of being entranced with what we learn about the round thing, both Hammer and I are quite annoyed. We decide to drink more coffee but the anonymous dream people have finished every drop. Boy are we mad about that!


In the dream I was cranky, but I woke up laughing. Though I'm guessing I'll never really understand what luck is, I am tickled by my mind's capacity to wonder, to imagine, and to keep me entertained at night. A salute to my mind and while I'm at it, to my friend Hammer, too. Why not? Nice!

22 comments:

glnroz said...

yes,, with two eyes piercing my computer screen. Is it ok for an old man to giggle? lol Thanx for the morning. oh,,coffee goes good with wolves. :)

Deborah said...

too cool

i awoke the other day saying, "Sepulveda, Sepulveda, Sepulveda"

this morning saying, "the boy jumped into the maimed boat."

loving you

Hammer said...

I gave smoking the briefest of whirls, didn't care much for it or see the point, never picked it up again. As for coffee, I drink gallons of the stuff - it's just that beer tends to be more suitable for our meetups. (I'll tell ya though, if anyone ever drinks the last of my coffee, it is ON!)

It was a big dreaming night for me too. Very rich and detailed. Lengthy conversations. No bloggers though - for whatever reason, bloggers almost never wander into my dreams. At least not the dreams I remember.

A salute to you too, my dear friend!

Washington Cube said...

I'm still carrying around the pain of a phantom bullet wound from last night (see blog.) I've had a pain in my ribs where I was shot all day.

My word verification is tiegr and that could be tigger and that means pooh!

Mary Ellen said...

Great dream, great coffee pic. The question about all this quantum stuff for me is where intention, heart, and humor fit in, 'cause I think they do.

Liza Ursu said...

All stories are true. I love that Reya, I love this post!

ellen abbott said...

All stories are true...and not only that, they are all happening simultaneously. (So I've heard.)

Reya Mellicker said...

It feels that way to me, Ellen.

Mary Ellen, there are an infinite number of intentions, heartfelt emotions and types of humor, all playing themselves out simultaneously, at least according to the physicists. Maybe intention helps us focus on one particular reality over the others. Who knows?

Tom said...

Marlboros...right...that dream suggests maybe some kind of funny cigarette!

Reya Mellicker said...

A lot funnier than Marlboros!

Cyndy said...

I want some of that coffee - NOW!!! I never really understood the purpose of cigarettes - probably because I'd sampled the funny kind first.

lakeviewer said...

I pay attention to dreams, especially the scary ones. They help me see my true fears.

Ronda Laveen said...

Those darned dream people, they are always the coffee hoarders. Ya gotta watch 'em every minute:-)

Imagine that? You going to an alternate reality with Hammer? Now there's a surprise!

Natalie said...

I just love your posts, Reya. * insert big smile here*

steven said...

hi reya, here's some just woke up barely get my eyes to open thinking on the cup f coffee picture. like the cream pattern on the surface of the coffee, there are so many layers crafted beautifully that make up "life" and some come and some go with the swirl of a spoon. inside those layers are so many different kinds of love and ways of relating and being and you know so clearly what love and being really is but it seems to come in beautiful little pieces, waves that dance side-to-side that are connected to deeper waves that have bigger movements that somehow connect together but they don't all land in the same person and so for most of us - and i'm casting my experience as "normal" ha!! what am i thinking?!! - it's the whole of the experience in sum that provides all the different pieces in relief to comprise the "real love" we sense is right. i wonder at the incredible fortune of people who experience the whole in one person.
this would be a good time to make myself some coffee and think some more chemically enthused thoughts. steven

Margaret Gosden said...

Would like to know more about the M theory so will do it the harder way....great photos. One of these days I hope to go to the Peregrine Cafe.

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

Just found your blog over at a hazy moon. I think all stories are true in a convoluted way..just like our dreams. I always wake up and wonder what I did the day before that might liken it to the dream I had. Yours was pretty cool! I'll have a sip of the cuppa now...looks delicious!

Reya Mellicker said...

Steven, you are my very favorite philosopher!

GYPSYWOMAN said...

oh, my goodness, i was just talking about eastern market yesterday!!! it's one of my fave things to do in the city! i'm in central delaware now but spent a number of years in the city till i decided a slower lifestyle was what i want for a while - now, dc is close enough for weekend treks or even day treks - and in the meantime, i get to have the slow moving rural lifestyle here - in any event, just wanted to say hello - loved your post! as i do your blog! have a wonderful day! jenean

Barbara Martin said...

Reya, you lucky duck! As a dream connoisseur, I'm going to tell you what awakening in a dream means.

"This rare dream is a most fortunate omen whether it was your own awakening or that of some other person." --The Dream Dictionary by Lady Stearn Robinson and Tom Corbett. (This dream book is based on the old oracles, and I'm now on my third paperback copy as my poodle, Maggie, ate the second one. Yum, smells like mom so it must taste good too.)

Reya Mellicker said...

Barbara how funny that your dog ate your dream book! I wonder if its dreams shifted as a result?

poietes said...

Reya,

On a personal note, you do not have your e-mail address on your page, so I am assuming that you would prefer not to be contacted directly, but I have a personal question that I would prefer not to put in the comments. Would you mind contacting me at poietes1@yahoo.com? Thank you.