Dream Dinner

About 5 years ago, I begin reading up and taught myself how to lucid dream…where you know you’re dreaming within your dream. Since then, I’ve tried to find different cool new things to try in my dreams. A little over a year ago, I read an article about having a dream dinner with anybody you want. I meditated on it while falling asleep, and sure enough, I had dinner that night with the three people I wanted to. The first was Digby Wolfe. Digby was a comedy writer from England who created the vaudeville TV show, Laugh-In. He was also my comedy writing instructor and mentor at the University of New Mexico, and a very hilarious, humble, amazing human being. Digby had passed away several months before this, but is someone I still think about constantly and look to for advice, even though he’s not on this earth anymore.

I didn’t have a personal relationship with the other two people I was sharing the table with, but this dream was my chance to. They were the eccentrically creative Steve Jobs, and then enlightened Mahatma Gandhi. I had been struggling with the ideas of money and business with love and philanthropy. The idea that giving is good and receiving is bad had been weighing heavy on me. I want to make money by helping others, but I don’t want it to appear that money is the reason I’m helping others. Maybe these three could help me figure this out. I respected Jobs’ business sense and creativity, but had read many stories about what a miserable person he was to be around. Gandhi was an amazing individual who seemed to love life, as well as love those around him, although he had very little money or material goods. Digby was my more real life example. I knew him personally as a human being, who loved life and loved those around him, and found a way to make a living doing what he loved.

As everyone arrived at the table, I realized I was in a dream, but I was astonished as I saw each of the individual’s distinctive personalities shine. Steve was bitter and down to business, ready to get things started, but obviously full of passion and motivation. Digby didn’t take himself so seriously, and every snarky comment Jobs threw at him, he made sure to shoot a quick-fire response that was twice as smart and witty. As those two played a game of verbal ping-pong, Gandhi and myself got to have our own conversation. He was very open and easy to talk to as I told him about the struggles going on in my brain about love and business and my life’s purpose. What he told me was something I will never forget…

“You were put on this planet to help other people, help other people.”

This was such an obvious yet profound idea that I had never really thought of. I’ve known most of my life that I wanted to help other people, but helping others help others? It makes since. See, part of me loves helping others because it’s the right thing to do. Because my parents, my church, my heart, my society says to do it. But it’s not purely altruistic. Part of me likes helping other people because it makes me feel good to know that I helped. Maybe that’s egotistical, but as long as others are getting help, I don’t think that’s a bad thing. We SHOULD all feel good for doing good things. So if I was somehow able, if WE were somehow able, to help other people help other people, then we would be getting that same feeling, times two! Everybody wants to feel good, and I think almost everybody wants to help other people feel good as well.

This simple quote from the subconscious of a dream, or who knows, perhaps from Gandhi himself, is something I’ve thought about and tried to incorporate into my life since then. So if you want to help other people, you should! But let’s not stop at helping other people. Let’s all…


~Rusty Rutherford