Friday, September 10, 2010

Enlightening Voyage

When I was a young lad of about 11, there was a show on TV that I absolutely loved called "Voyagers!" If you've never heard of it, don't feel bad. It only lasted a season. The basic premise was about a time-traveler named Phineas Bogg who accidentally gets strapped with a kid named Jeffrey, who also happens to be a whiz at history. The job of the "voyagers" is to fix things that have gone wrong in history (kind of a precursor to "Quantum Leap,"). Since Phineas lost his guide book (which told him how to fix historical events gone awry), he depends on and works together with Jeffrey to make what's gone wrong in history right again. Anyway, the show was directed towards kids and was meant to be educational. My mom and I watched every episode and really enjoyed it, but ultimately it was trounced by "60 Minutes." I recently watched the whole season again on DVD, and although some of it is, admittedly, cheesy and low-budget, I still really enjoyed it and thought it held up pretty well.

Phineas Bogg was played by Jon-Erik Hexum, later famous for accidentally shooting and killing himself on the set of another show, "Cover Up." Jeffrey was played by a young child actor named Meeno Peluce, who was fairly popular in the 70s and 80s and has the distinction of being the real-life half-brother of Soleil Moon-Frye, who played the title character on "Punky Brewster." Peluce later gave up acting and , at present, is a photographer.

In any case, this trivia is useful not just for fun's sake, but also because it played a part in a dream I had last night. In the dream I was a child, about the same age I would have been when "Voyagers!" was on. However, in the dream I was a cast member on the show. Meeno Peluce and I were on a break while another scene was being filmed, and we were talking. What was unusual about the dream, and what really stuck in my mind after I woke up, was that Meeno and I were simultaneously in the past, present, and future. Here we were kids on a TV show from nearly 30 years ago, but we were talking about present-day events of 2010 as well as events from our shared past in that particular present.

For example, one of us pointed over at Jon-Erik Hexum and commented that it had been too bad the shooting accident had happened to him and that if "Voyagers!" hadn't been canceled, he wouldn't have been cast on the show where he was killed. In this present reality, Jon-Erik was making faces at Meeno and being silly while they were setting up his next shot. (Sidenote: I understand that in spite of their age difference, the real Jon-Erik Hexum and Meeno Peluce were pretty close and were good friends.) I also commented on the fact that sometimes when I watched old footage of myself from the show (footage that hadn't even been shot yet in our current reality), I was still proud of some of my acting. Meeno asked what I was doing now, and I told him I was an actor still and primarily did stage work in Utah and Nevada. Meeno said he had given up the business and had become a photographer.

It's hard to describe, but in the dream, even though we were talking like our present adult selves about stuff that exists in our lives now, I also very much felt like I did when I was a child at age 11, and everything I was seeing and experiencing around me was what I remember as a child. And yet, I was experiencing both past and future experience in this present conversation.

Now why do I even bring any of this up? After all, it was just a strange dream. I guess I felt a moment of enlightenment this morning as I woke up with this dream still very clearly in my mind and which has been with me all day. I felt just a tinge of this kind of omnipresent thought where one is experiencing past, present, and future all at once; that there is no such thing as time really; and it made me wonder if this is just a small fraction of how Heavenly Father might see us and our world.

It's really hard to explain, and I don't necessarily expect anyone to read this and really "get" what I experienced myself, but I just woke up with this feeling that we often limit ourselves because we put constraints on ourselves in our thinking. There's this idea that we only use 10% of our brains, and I really believe that. I think there is so much unlocked potential that we never really quite understand how to access as humans. I also think that if our purpose is to become like our Heavenly Father, that there are so many unfathomable possibilities of things we will learn in the afterlife that can't quite be learned here. I've also always had this idea that the things we dream about could actually be based in things we are capable of doing, but just don't know how. I often fly in my dreams, for example, and think it's entirely possible that we are capable of flying even though it seems physically impossible within our mortal coils. I believe Jesus did, indeed, walk on water, and even though it seems like it is an impossible thing for regular human being to do, I believe we have it somewhere within us to do it.

The thing is, when we dream (or at least when I do), everything seems so natural and common even though, when I wake up, it suddenly becomes weird or unusual. I've had dreams where I was talking to somebody and then they morphed into somebody else, and it the dream it seemed completely normal whereas if it happened in our waking life, we would deem it strange. Or I've had dreams where someone is speaking to me without moving their lips (like they're transmitting me pure thought, which, by the way, I think is how we communicate in the afterlife).

Anyway, this particular dream reminded me that we have so much unlocked potential within us, and that we are capable of seeing things in entirely new and limitless ways. It was nice to be reminded of that. Anyway, just thought I'd share.


J G-W said...

One reason I'm fascinated by dreams is that way these kinds of associations pop up too... In your dream, for instance, characters from a dream about time travel converse with you about past, present and future events...

Dan said...

Just a short commment, I suppose not entirely related to this blog entry....somehow I stumbled onto your blog (I was searching for some other topic) and read several entries. Spent better part of two hours reading!

Wanted to say that I enjoy your writing--it's clear, honest, and refreshing. Did I say honest? I'm a straight LDS man, married with a family. Now serving in a bishopric. Anyway, no one can know exactly how you feel or what you are experiencing in life--the joys, the sorrows, anything--but you write so well that I think most readers get some clue and it is for the better of all.

I'm done and I'll bookmark the blog, expecially when I want to read some uplifting words. Thanks--Dan

Gay LDS Actor said...

Nice observation, J G-W.

Thanks so much, Dan. That really means a lot to me. I appreciate your stopping by and am grateful that you enjoy my writing.

Richard said...

This isn't about this post really ... just a question to see if you might be able to help me. I'm doing research for a fiction book where my main character will be gay and Mormon. I grew up in the Lutheran church so I don't know a lot about the experiences of a Mormon youth to adult. Would you be willing to answer a few questions for me? I'd be happy to shoot you an email with questions.

I appreciate any help you can give!