Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Refugee Dreams: Liberian Author in America, Mogama

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Disturbing dreams about guns and killings briefly appear in forthcoming book REFUGEE WAS MY NAME by Mogama (Moses Garswa Matally). He based his book on his journal of civil war in Liberia and life in Buduburam Refugee Camp in Ghana. The dreams reflected the nightmarish events the author went through because of civil war in his homeland, Liberia, starting in 1990. 
     Mogama told a roommate in the refugee camp about one significant dream, and the roommate asked him what he thought it meant. Mogama reflected on the three main warring factions that were tearing up their homeland, Liberia. He then told the meaning that he foresaw, about people in the dream and future leaders in Liberia: 

The driver represents a ruler of Liberia, but someone other than the three. He despises the three fighters, but he too is unfit to lead the nation. He is just as impatient and power-hungry as the factions he will try to keep under control. He will be highly influenced by a woman, or perhaps will be replaced by a woman, who, due to her maturity, becomes the actual leader of Liberia. The warning in the dream is this: Outbreaks of fighting will continue for some time in Liberia. Peace will eventually come, but it is still in the distance.”

     Should a Christian writer include such a dream in a book, as Mogama did in his new book, Refugee Was My Name? Is it accepted by most readers? I think that what most writers include in personal stories are potent memories, and readers understand and even sympathize with this fact. It is like seeing a movie and being touched by it for different reasons. For Mogama, a real world outcome years later closely resembled his nightmare dream as a refugee...with a hopeful ending. Many writers have life-affecting experiences of suffering that include dreams that retell, warn, inform, or give insight to the dreamer.
     What reminded me of this dream vignette from Mogama's book is that the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to a Liberian peace activist and Liberia's first woman president. I have found this news to be especially interesting because Mogama's dream interpretation in his book included that a women would lead Liberia out of its civil war pains.
     Recently, Liberia's slow climb out of the pit of civil war has been in the news more.     People that help through churches or organizations care about the future of this country they may never visit. Refugees of that war care deeply and rejoice to see awake hopes and dreams being given a chance to be fulfilled.

Follow above Links to Guardian UK and ABC news blogs.
Excerpt from Refugee Was My Name by permission of publisher, Opine Publishing, the sponsor of this blog.

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