“And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God, ascending and descending on it . . . .
“And, Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said: ‘Surely, God is in this place, and I knew it not.’” –Genesis 28:10-22
Like angels ascending and descending Jacob’s ladder, dreams link heaven and earth, the physical and the cosmic.
Dream allusions fill our prayer books, the Torah, Talmud, and Kabbalah. As the stories of Jacob, Daniel, Solomon, and others show, dreams are a path to the wisdom within. But dream power is not only for kings and prophets or for men alone It is a gift we all possess.
Prayer and meditation are rediscovered paths in modern Jewish spirituality. Joyce spotlights dreams, the primary, but often neglected, way humankind and God communicate.What if we in the Jewish community shared our dreams with each other? What insights might flow from calling upon our nocturnal messages? How might we, individually and communally, use our dreams for healing?
For more than 30 years, dreams have guided Joyce’s life. Dreams transformed her physical health and guided her back to her Jewish roots. As a news reporter, dreams aid her search for the truth, a journalist’s bottom line.
To revive the guiding, healing, and transformative powers of dreams, to support seekers in expressing dream wisdom in their creative, personal, and professional lives and in their social activism, she writes and lectures about how to integrate dream messages into our life journey.
Joyce is the author of Plum Dreams Diary: On Mothers, Men, Modern Medicine, and the Divine, a collection of dream narratives exploring the female psyche, and Dreams and the Wisdom Within, part memoir, part spiritual guide to healing and dreams.
She has lectured and taught about dreams at campus Hillels, Jewish Centers, and women’s retreats.
Joyce’s parents and grandparents were active in the Jewish community in Columbus, Ohio, where she grew up. The Hillel at Ohio State University was dedicated to her grandfather because of his passion for the role of Judaism in student life. She learned from their examples the essence of being Jewish is tikkun olam, repairing the world. Calling upon dream guidance is a powerful way to manifest the spiritual imperative.
Toward reviving and embracing dreams as a fundamental pillar and practice of Jewish spirituality, in 2019 Joyce co-founded the Jewish Association of Spirituality and Dreams with Rabbi Gaylia R. Rooks, Rabbi Emerita of The Temple, Louisville, Kentucky. JASD envisions Chalom Circles becoming as popular an offering in the Jewish community as Mah Jongg games are now.