When I was a teenager I had a recurring nightmare. I dreamt that a monster was following me and as I was running away I was getting stuck in mud. It was harder and harder to keep going and the monster was steadily approaching. When it finally got a hold of me, I woke up, completely covered in sweat. Then one day someone hing magical happened; I literally woke up within the dream. As I saw the monster I realized that I must be dreaming given that I had seen this image before. And as I woke up within the dream, not only did the monster disappear but I started taking charge of my dream and manifested the stuff I wanted.
The other day someone in the Spiritual Network commented on the waking up within the dream because of a nightmare and I told her to next time use this opportunity to dream lucidly. It was then that I realized the symbolic significance of lucid dreaming. It is in fact very similar to the spiritual state of awakening. Many of us get started on a spiritual journey because of pain, because of some monsters of our own making. It is almost as if we need the fear state to muster our commitment to finish the journey Home. Fear not, the monsters that chase you are