Posted by: Stephen Paul | December 18, 2007

Turning a pistol into a peace pipe–a potent dream

I can tell that I’m going through a very interesting transformation. My usual approach is to keep a process like this to myself. Since I won’t have much else to say until I have traveled down this road, I’ve decided to share my journey. I hope that may be of some use to you.

What follows is a letter I wrote to my friend, Lacee. Lacee is the medicine man I have mentioned in other postings (see July 25th–Friends with a common vision).


    I woke up this morning from an incredibly vivid and wonderful dream. It was unlike any other dream I have had. I thought of you immediately. At the very least, I think you will appreciate the dream. Hopefully, you can apply your own vision and wisdom to help me understand its significance.

    The dream takes place inside a small, one room work shed in the late 1800s. A medium height, strong and imposing Native American man walks in. His black hair is cut square below his ears and is tied with a wide headband. He wears a loose fitting, blocky, light blue shirt tied at the waist and faded yellow-tan, rough-woven pants that are tucked into calf-high mocasins. He had the energy and self-assuredness of a highly regarded warrior, probably a leader. He also had the intensity, seething anger, and hard eyes of someone who has seen a lot of hard battles. There was a sense of urgency and impatience about him. My thought was that he was probably Apache. 

    The second man in the room was also a Native American, and some sort of artisan. He was probably a metal worker, maybe a smithy, and an all-around maker of useful things. The room was his work space. He was smaller, leaner, and had a long, horsey face and nose. He was clearly timid, if not afraid, to be in the presence of the other man. He was very defferential.

    The warrior told the artisan he needed a pipe…now. It was clear that he expected the man to drop whatever he was doing and make that pipe for him. He didn’t say why he needed the pipe so urgently. The artisan didn’t even bother protesting, although from an expression on his face I could tell this would a not be an easy thing for him to do so quickly…under so much pressure. Rather than leaving him to work, the warrior leaned against the wall of the shed, slid down, sat cross legged on the dirt floor, and glared at the artisan.

    Without any futher discussion, the craftsman immediately went to a shelf on the wall and picked up an old, rusty calvary pistol (one of the older, long, thin ones). After examining it, he took it to an equally old and rusty anvil on the workbench in the center of the room, picked up a heavy hammer, and began pounding on the revolving cartrige chamber. As he beat and filed on the chamber I realized that he was shaping it to be the bowl of the pipe. I thought that very odd, since I am only aware of people using stone to make pipes. It was like he knew this was exactly the right thing to make this particular pipe from. He was turning this weapon into a peace pipe.

        That’s all I can recall, Lacee. The dream was just so detailed and specific. Everything seemed so authentic to the period. The two men seemed like actual people who had lived. I feel like there is something powerful and important about this dream. I hope you can give me some guidance about how to draw that out. Please let me know what you make of this. This dream had such an impact that I think I’ll post it on my blog. You can email me, call me, or, if you want, post your thoughts on my blog if you think that’s appropriate.


  1. It’s interesting that the warrior is the one who wants peace, even to the point of demanding and insisting.

    Lots of imagery and symbology here to work with!

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