I've had quite a few dreams that are primarily spiritual in nature. Most of these are left out of my recent book, and some of the ones that were included had large sections left out. This was partly because I had to keep the book to 90,000 words and that meant heavy editing (it started as 116,000). The other reason is that it was difficult to publish certain items because I didn't know how to verify them. In a way, that is the primary reason I organized Dreamer the way I did. By showing the dreams that could be verified first, then how they related to other dreams I hoped to demonstrate how I came to trust the spiritual-themed dreams.
Ironically, I probably now have far more "evidence" to support trusting the spiritual content of dreams than I have ever seen for more common concepts, like the idea that democracy is a better form of government than any other. And yet, I still worry sometimes. The funny thing is that we make decisions based on very little information all the time, but when it comes to spiritual concepts, the amount of evidence required is huge even if the concept comes down to an angelic request that we stop using profanity. That shouldn't be too hard to accept, but then there is the way it is expressed, through an angel, and that can be very distracting. Additionally, and in this case I am thinking of a specific dream I wrote of in my book, there is the penalty of non-compliance. The angel showed me the penalty, and it was a kind of spiritual disfigurement. This wasn't visible physically, but it was there regardless. That is where it suddenly gets difficult for people. The advice sounds good, but that consequence sounds pretty severe, so let's chuck the entire idea without more evidence to back it up.
What about non-angelic, non-human, non-animal nature spirits? I dream of these regularly, though not often. They come across as perfectly real, but associated as they are with childhood fantasy, I left them out of my book altogether. I would have liked more evidence to be comfortable presenting those dreams, and this is despite an incident where I actually saw many of these creatures when I was young. But then, I was young, so it isn't good enough. Best wait for another sighting, and maybe I will, before writing about them in more detail.
Still, how much evidence do I really need before I feel comfortable? I probably have a lot more than other people. Out of over 3,100 records, I have hundreds that are verified in some way. Surely that would lead to a great deal of confidence, and it does, but within carefully proscribed limits. I trust my family to be honest in their dealings with me and do not expect proof of their every statement, but that is sometimes how I treat my dreams--with extreme suspicion. But is this fair? Surely after over twenty years of verified dreams some trust has been earned or is deserved?
This is on my mind right now because I just finished writing a presentation I will give at a conference on dreaming this summer. One of the topics I will discuss is how spiritual psi is verified. Because there are often no physical connections, it is quite resistant to all normal forms of verification. While writing it I realized how much I feared uncertainty. I like to be as sure of myself as anyone else, but sometimes you have to just accept that it is up to you to make your best guess based on what information you have.