Existential Crisis in a Teacup
I haven’t posted for a while – on any of my blogs. I felt bad for it – but I felt worse for not writing my own stuff – being bogged down in freelance work. Then I felt bad for feeling bad – as I should be grateful that I had the opportunity to leave my full time job to be a writer. I am grateful – and my husband is a saint for encouraging me to do so. I couldn’t complain to him about my internal predicament. Getting the flu in between and going down for the count didn’t help any.
I then found myself plunging into a strange fog which I am still trying to fight my way out of. I became immersed in a spiraling whirlpool – doing my best to grasp onto whatever debris or beams of light that showed up here and there. They slipped out of my hands so quickly that I wondered if they existed at all. My dreams have been intense – and hopeful. When I get the chance I’ll post them on my Collective Unconscious blog.
I also veered away from my Shapeshifting blog – neglecting to chronicle my “progress” on healthy living. I’ve been sleeping a lot and doing my best to drag myself to the computer every day to complete my freelance writing wherever possible. One thing I know for sure is that – for the most part – this fog or “crisis” has to do with my impending 50th birthday in September. I am not happy about it – at all. It’s not so much the fact that I’m ageing – but rather that I’m losing time.
My identity has become a mist, or a vapor that has no form. All that I projected about who I thought I was and what I was doing has cleared to reveal the truth. There is nothing. I am nothing. Nothing matters. It’s all pretend. We keep on kicking along just to save face – to make ourselves feel that it’s all – somehow – worth it. Worth the struggle. One day we’ll get there. But where is that? And who says that it’s “somewhere” – the destination we’ve been working towards?
It seems to be a collective grudging towards the only definite element in life: death. I don’t even know what that is – or what it means. The ceasing to be. That sounds awful – and I’m sorry to be so down. Please don’t let it infect you. If anything – I’m writing this out to chronicle my dark patch. I see myself posting tweets etc about my novels – begging for people to buy my books, blah blah blah. It seems so pointless. The emptiness is swallowing me up – but I have to write about it. I have to “sublimate” it – in order to make sense of what is happening to me. Maybe it might help someone else out there – or maybe they can help me.
I stopped writing last night – due to plummeting further downwards. I could see that I wasn’t doing myself any good, even though I thought at the beginning that writing about my “malaise” would make me feel better. I went to bed – with the start of a panic attack looming on the horizon. I was breathing shallow and on the verge of tears that wouldn’t come. I got into bed and focused on my breathing – in a kind of forced meditation. After about half an hour I fell asleep.
When in the clutches of despair, it’s important to remember just to breathe. The only thing in the world that matters is breathing – at that point. I told myself that – if nothing else in the universe mattered – breathing was all I could do. The knowledge that everything would make sense – eventually – kept me going, even though the thoughts in the back of my mind kept bubbling to the surface from time to time. Thoughts such as: “what’s the point?” or “what then?” as well as “I’m just prolonging the obvious.”
I pushed them away and continued breathing. I dreamed about having different cars. First – a red one – which I parked seamlessly in a tight spot. Twice. I amazed myself. Then I had a blue convertible. It was under a dirty blanket and I had to tell a friend to keep her son from playing in it. Then I had a huge, thick branch of marijuana buds. Each bud was intricately wrapped in foil. I wanted to smoke it but people kept showing up so I had to stash it somewhere. Then I woke up.
There are a lot of symbols and related meanings which I will explore in my Collective Unconscious blog soon. The main messages I take from the dream include reserved energy, hiding depressive thoughts and the desire to lose myself. Today I’m getting myself in gear. I have decided to create a roster or weekly agenda for myself. I need order and direction – to pave my way out of this crisis. I’ll post an update later in the week.
I took some photos of myself last night – in an attempt to preserve whatever fading looks I think I might have before I hit 50. I used some photo editing and filters – but for the most part – it’s me. They make me laugh – now.
When I’m feeling like this – I have to remind myself that there are others in the world who are living wretched lives. They would do anything to have a fraction of what I have. Therefore – it seems that I have no right to complain or feel depressed. But what is that thought supposed to do – comfort me? Isn’t that wrong? Does pulling myself up by the bootstraps help them any? Do I owe it to the less fortunate to live a fulfilled life? Isn’t that rubbing their noses in my fortunate life?
What is humbling is the huge smiles on their faces – in the middle of a war zone or filthy, hopeless conditions. The fact that they can make the most of a horrible situation; that they can find the silver lining. Clean water or peace would mean the world to them. In my little corner of the world – I do have access to clean water, a peaceful home and food. I should be grateful. My own mind is the enemy.
Time to whip it into shape.
Dream Blogging – Dead bodies and Dirty Water
I was in a field with long grass where there was a patch mowed in a square. As I walked past, I looked in and saw several men – supposedly dead – lying along the edges. At first I thought they were just men’s clothes arranged as though men were inside them, but then I realized that they were men. They were wet and I assumed they had drowned before being placed in the square.
Then I walked to the edge of the field and met up with a work colleague. She was standing in a queue with other people who were going to a training session and I walked over to talk to her. She was laughing (as usual) and told me that she was trying to get away from a man who was trying to kiss her. She said that he had herpes and she didn’t want to catch it.
Then she told me that her anal jewelry was bothering her! Later in the dream, I was thirsty and went over to a man who was serving water out of an old metal bucket (or a still). When I went up to him, he handed me a large jar – but I saw that there were a couple of dead insects and a spot of mold floating in it. I wouldn’t drink it, so I went over the road to a covered stand.
There was an old woman selling her wares – but it looked more like a forgotten trash heap. I thought I saw a table loaded with old animal skulls – displayed in a pyramid fashion. But when I got closer, I realized that they were just knitted and crocheted baby booties.
I told the woman that I was thirsty, so she pulled a cup of water out of her pocket. I was afraid that it was her urine, so again – I declined.
THEMES: Death, issues with men, sexuality, disease, thirst, contamination, misinterpretation.
SYMBOLS: Death, grass, square, water, drowning, queue/line, training, sex, water, dirt/filth, skulls, crochet.
EMOTIONS: Confusion, concern, disgust, humor, thirst.
ARCHETYPES: Playful/sexual woman, dead men, peddlars, old woman, animal skulls.
INTERPRETATION: To see the animus (for a woman) – dead in a field – could represent dead sexuality. Fear of losing sexual power – although seeing my colleague happy and chatting about avoiding a man for fear of disease, could also indicate a lackadaisical attitude about avoiding sex. (Hmmm – not like me at all!)
What stumps me is the part about ‘anal jewelry’. This colleague is hilarious and we have a fun time together laughing at work – but I feel that she does represent me, and the ‘anal jewelry’ could symbolize abnormal sexuality. She was off-handed about the comment – so it could represent an element of myself that is glib or flippant about sex.
The fact that the men had possibly drowned (water = subconscious, emotions) – could indicate the men in my past that I’ve “laid out to dry” – or that I am ignoring my sexual side (or the sexual side of my husband.) Without giving too much away (we are very happy!) – we have been very busy of late, with our careers etc. Let’s leave it at that!
The fact that she was in a queue or line – waiting to go into training, could symbolize life still throwing lessons at me. I am very impatient – especially when it comes to my writing career – so maybe it represents the fact that I still have to keep learning and wait my turn.
The thing with the dirty water could have been affected by being thirsty for real. When I went to bed – I had brought a glass of water with me as I was particularly thirsty that night. When I woke up – I was still thirsty, so maybe my physical condition carried over to the dream state. In the dream – I couldn’t drink the nasty water – representing my thirst and lack of clean water to drink. If I was going to interpret it as a dream symbol – it could either tie in with my health (still working on it – eating healthy and all that boring crap!) – or even a “thirst” for sex, which is thwarted – self-inflicted.
The animal skulls (especially in the shape of a pyramid) – could indicate my desire to get back to my pagan side. This is something I’ve been thinking of lately, as I want to re-dedicate myself to the craft. The old lady – who had baby booties (white) – could symbolize my desire to get my business and writing career off the ground. (Babies represent new things, new ideas etc.) The idea of her having urine in her pocket doesn’t escape me. Sometimes I feel like I’m “regurgitating” or re-purposing things!
SUMMARY: I need to continue focusing on my health – and pay more attention to my sexual side. I must remember not to take my husband for granted. I need to think up more creative ways to promote and market my business and writing. I need to get my schedule worked out so I can incorporate my spiritual pursuits. (I’ve already started with clearing out and cleaning my office – to make way for a sacred space.) One step at a time!
Dream Blogging – Nightmare: Crazy Woman
I had this nightmare on Wednesday morning (4/22/15). I wasn’t as scared during the dream as I was when I woke up – for some reason. My husband was up – getting ready for work – and I was too scared to scream out for him. Some strange things happened during the day – which makes me wonder if it was prophetic.
In the dream – I was in a house with some other people. I knew that there was a crazy woman in the bedroom and told the others not to let her out. I looked up the hallway and saw her raging and scrambling around in the bedroom. Then she came darting out of the room and down the hallway – coming for me. We tried to restrain her but she was so crazy – and was trying to suck people’s energy – through their mouths. It was like she had a fiery mouth, and she kept lunging at everyone’s faces.
For some reason, we took her to the pub (it was night time) – and we asked some of the men to help us stop the woman from attacking us. They couldn’t contain her – as she was weaving and running around them – continuing to lunge at people face first.
Then we left the pub and walked down an alley way – with her following us. Her head turned into a blazing sun – still humanoid – but sending off flares, with her mouth wide open. She finally got to me and when her face got close to mine – I became the same as her – with a flaming head. I also wanted to run at people and suck their energy – even though I was horrified.
THEMES: Draining energy, sexuality, the Shadow unleashed, fear of hidden desires becoming known
SYMBOLS: Fire, vampirism, psychosis, danger
EMOTIONS: Fear, passion, desire to escape
ARCHETYPES: Crazy woman, the Shadow
INTERPRETATION: I see this nightmare from two angles – repressed sexual desire and the need for energy (or fear of others stealing my energy.) As the Shadow – the crazy woman represents the side of myself that wants to be wild, to be heard and accepted. I have a raging desire to be myself lately – and am finding it so difficult to maintain my daily persona – a repressed office worker, when the wild woman inside me rages at the self-imposed cage.
It’s a cage that is needed at the moment – as the bills still need to be paid – and it could be a while before I make enough money with my other ventures before I can chuck it in and finally be who I’ve wanted to be for so long. From a sexual point of view – without giving too much away (not that I haven’t already!) – I have been doing battle with the idea of striving for divine love (therefore – control over my ‘lower’ self) and settling for a mundane life.
To set the record straight – I love my husband dearly and we have been married for seven years in July. Like most couples though – everyday life does interfere with our ‘routine’ – and the passion has detoured down the road of ‘comfortableness’. I don’t like giving too much away – especially about the private side of my life – but I have always been fiery and passionate in my love life. I think this dream indicates that I wanted to keep the crazy side of myself in the bedroom.
When she came out and finally got a hold of me – she forced me to take on her personality. I was afraid of the power that my passion has over me – as well as how others see me and what my passion could do to them. I didn’t have time to confront my Shadow – she took me over and forced herself on me. I have to recognize that this side of myself never went away. She was hiding and slathering in the shadows of my bedroom!
Now – the prophetic ramifications! For the rest of that day – after the nightmare – I was privy to a variety of ‘crazy’ behavior. Several instances involving women ‘losing it’ occurred throughout the day. I saw a woman having an aggressive conversation with with another woman at the bus station. She was flailing her arms around wildly as she was so angry about something to do with a man. She had wild hair and kept pulling her top up and down. I wondered if she was drunk or on drugs.
At work – two women nearly got into an argument. One walked off in a huff. Later on – again at the bus stop – a self-confessed bi-polar woman told me a frightening story about her boss threatening to kill her and her children. It was a scary conversation – even though she was seemingly harmless – but I wondered how many more crazy women I was going to have to deal with!
SUMMARY: Apart from the wild day I had after the nightmare – I feel that I was sent a message – loud and clear. The Shadow demands to be recognized and integrated!
Notes on Dreaming
This is from a chapter I wrote a few years ago – for a book that has been shelved – called “The Lifescape”. I had planned to write a self-help book about life mapping – using a variety of techniques, such as self analysis, ritual, dream interpretation, shadow work etc. It was from a Jungian/Pagan perspective. I shelved it as other projects took precedence, but also – because my mind was oscillating between atheism and agnosticism. Trepidation took a hold of me so I essentially forgot it – deliberately. I might still go ahead with it – after I’m done writing the Storming Archives!
At any rate – I’ve decided to post it here, seeing as I’ve been blogging about my dreams. I hope they are of some value to whoever reads this. (I will continue the Dream Blogging – sometimes my dreams are too personal to post!)
In this chapter, we will discuss the importance of analyzing our dreams, including the usage of:
- Dream journals
- Dream incubation
- Lucid dreaming
- Common themes
- Recurring dreams
- The ‘Universal’ or ‘Great’ dreams
- Prophetic dreams
- Jung’s individuation process and basic archetypes related to it.
We will also explore how we can incorporate dream insights into our psychological analysis of ourselves.
Self analysis would be pointless (in my view) without the inclusion of dream interpretation. The subconscious world is the playing field where our daily events, relationships, memories, impressions, problems, personality issues etc are ‘played’ out – like a nightly performance. They afford us the opportunity to dissect, analyze and integrate the messages into our waking consciousness.
When our consciousness lapses into sleep, the subconscious mind takes over and dredges up all the things we have repressed, ignored or denied – to produce the dream. When we’re awake, it can filter through to produce visions. It’s also the realm that gives us the playground for daydreaming and creativity – offering us the forum and tools we need in order to explore and understand ourselves, others and the world around us.
How do we interpret them?
By interpreting the symbols, atmospheres, emotions and actions – even the time of day. (It’s been said that if the dream was in the morning – then it represents your early years. If midday – then it indicates now or your middle years. If the dream was in the evening or night time – then it denotes your later years.)
If you dream in color (some people don’t) – analyze the meaning of the colors – also shapes, numbers, etc. The list is endless. Dreams sometimes speak in puns – for example: seeing someone kicking a bucket could be death (which in turn, could represent the ending of old habits or way of life, transformation etc) – or it could just mean a bad tempered person! Another example would be a crumbled cookie – saying “that’s just the way things are” – regarding an issue that might be bothering you – basically saying “That’s the way the cookie crumbles”. Or it could just mean that you feel you don’t have enough to eat – with only crumbs available.
Our dreams can also speak to us in riddles – in contrast to blatantly direct messages. That’s why dreams can be so difficult (and sometimes annoying) when we’re attempting to interpret them – however – the process is also interesting, illuminating and definitely rewarding.
They can also show sides of ourselves as reflected through others, which is confusing when we try to place the blame or try to figure out who and what the dream was talking about. (Later in this chapter, we’ll explore this further – regarding the elements of the Shadow, the Anima/Animus and the Self.)
The most vital tool to interpreting your dreams is understanding universal or ‘classic’ symbolism – in contrast to your own personal symbolism. A monkey can represent a mischievous character to one person – and to another – it may symbolize a wise man or woman. A flower could mean beauty, growth, coming of age, sexual attractiveness, pregnancy and so on. It all depends on the dreamer and what’s going on in their lives.
It’s imperative to keep a dream journal – whether a notebook or a word document on your computer. (If you’re not much of an artist – you can cut and paste images to represent the symbols – which makes the process fun.) Alternatively – keep a tape recorder or note taker by your bed, so you don’t have to scramble around trying to find your pen and journal in the dark.
A handy tip – You can remember your dreams more easily when your eyes are shut. The theta waves are in play – just like when you’re dreaming.
It’s somewhat difficult to interpret dreams as ‘prophetic’ – due to the many possibilities regarding the symbolic nature of them. People have had them – throughout history: like the man who dreamed that there was going to be a plane crash and tried to alert authorities – to no avail. A plane did crash, as per the details in his dream. But as plane crashes happen a lot –it’s hard to 100% apply it as prophetic. (Click on the image to link to the story.)
To dream of death – even dead bodies, pronouncements of death, headstones etc – does not necessarily mean that you or someone else is going to die. It usually represents endings, transformation and so on. It’s important to take into consideration other symbols surrounding it, such as the atmosphere, what the people were doing, saying, how they were dressed etc. Seeing dead bodies could signify issues such as illnesses in the body – disease, lethargy or certain aspects of the body changing. Sometimes we don’t see that a dream was prophetic until way after it occurs.
I had a dream once – where (to cut a long story short) I had a fly agaric toadstool in my pocket (the red ones with white specks on them.) The pocket was in a white jacket made of wolf’s fur. In front of me was a congregation of rabbits, who trembled every time I faced them. I tried to interpret it to the best of my ability at the time, but it wasn’t until later – a few months later – when I realized that it meant that I needed to be careful as to who I told about my being a witch, as some people were afraid of me afterwards. (Their projection – not mine, I assure you. I’m quite a pleasant person!)
There are also dreams that can alert us to the fact that we might have medical issues that we’re not aware of – or are about to manifest. For example: I had a dream that I was on the second floor of a house, where the lower floor was in flames. I tried to escape down a ladder, but it was also on fire. Not long afterwards, I had problems with a very painful hip, due to a joint problem. It felt as though it was on fire and I had to get x-rays and tests done, but they couldn’t figure out what was wrong. For two months I had to take anti inflammatory medication, until it went away by itself.
To dream of a house sometimes means you’re exploring the ‘Mansion of the soul’. Apparently the basement can represent your repressed memories or hidden self. The kitchen sometimes means your family memories or the nurturing side of yourself. The bedroom can represent your sexual side; the attic can signify what’s going on with your mental or spiritual attitudes; the lounge room can denote how you present to others or how you act in a crowd, and so on.
I’m not trying to dissuade you from interpreting your dreams as prophetic, but just be careful – as you may be, at times – deluding yourself to the point of being disappointed when they don’t come into being. (Especially if you dream about becoming wealthy!) Which leads me to:
Wish Fulfillment Dreams
Not all the wonderful dreams we have are wish fulfillment. For example: some sexual dreams do deal with our attitudes towards our own sexuality, our sexual history – or even the desire to ‘unite’ with someone, an idea or group of people, etc. Once again – it all depends on the dreamer and their circumstances. We often have dreams where we are having sex with a famous person we either secretly adore or never had any attraction to.
You don’t necessarily need to be single to have sexual dreams – therefore – it doesn’t automatically signify that you are sexually starved! (Even though sexual starvation does occur in some relationships.) For some sex addicts – to dream of having sex rarely occurs, but usually appears in some other format – such as packed trains, laundry baskets full of dirty underwear. Sometimes their dreams involve grossly abnormal sexuality or bizarre events – even animals (denoting base or animalistic desires.) But that can also occur for people who are celibate.
To dream of eating delicious food such as gourmet cooking, chocolate, cakes – or smorgasbords – can represent physical starvation – e.g. someone on a diet or financially challenged. It can also signify other issues – even sex. Once again it all depends on what else is going on in the dream and your life, your attitudes, etc.
Dreaming of finding a wad of cash or a wallet bursting with money usually appears when we don’t have any! Also, dreaming of being successful and powerful sometimes appears when we feel powerless and unimportant. The subconscious does try to make up for any shortcomings – which again makes the interpretation of dreams harder still. We need to be careful not to jump to conclusions and need to assess the dream from all possible angles.
Recurring dreams and common themes are usually an indication that we are not paying attention to ourselves and what’s going on in our lives. Of course, some common themes do continue occurring, as either it ‘worked’ before – when you paid heed or where your subconscious ‘knows’ what symbols to use to grab your attention.
Universal or Classic dreams
Having a good understanding of basic symbolism does help when interpreting your dreams, as well as a working knowledge of archetypes, which we’ll discuss soon. I’ll include here a brief list of ‘universal’ or ‘classic’ dreams, which we all seem to have at one time or another. Again – this is all dependent on the dreamer, the circumstances etc. But on average, the following can be applied for general purposes:
Flying – a desire to get away from difficulties; escape – desire for freedom. Some say flying represents an idealized view of your sexual capacity! Look at how you’re flying, where, the weather, your feelings – e.g. elated or fearful?
Falling – sometimes linked with flying, but usually an anxiety dream, indicating lack of support, feelings of insecurity, a need for structure, etc. Successful people often have this dream, for obvious reasons.
Nakedness – feeling exposed (where you might be worrying about others finding out your hidden side, etc), repressed sexuality, vulnerability, concern about social status, etc.
Loose teeth – falling out or being pulled can signify the desire to change your situation, feeling powerless, insecurities regarding your appearance, impotence, etc.
Snakes – can signify new perceptions and realities. Historically they meant psychic or sexual energy or deep seated fears; a “snake in the grass” to watch out for (as a pun).
Travel – depends on the vehicle. e.g. Airplanes could mean foreign concepts, or the same as flying. A train could signify how you ’travel’ in life alongside others and so on. Are you going left or right (wrong or right)? Are you driving, or is someone else – meaning who’s in charge of the vehicle (your life) etc.
Weather: Rain – water usually represents emotions, so being in the rain or seeing it could mean tears or emotional issues. Alternatively it could mean washing something clean or a welcome sign of rejuvenation.
Weather: Storms – struggles, personal disaster etc. Raging emotions, war of words, chaos – sometimes necessary to clear the path.
Weather: Tidal waves – I used to often have these dreams – it usually represents feeling overwhelmed by your emotions. It depends on what’s going on. For example: I used to dream that the wave was washing over me and I had no control, but once I resolved these issues (to a degree!) – I dreamt that the tidal wave came, then crashed – but by the time the water reached me I was sitting down calmly, letting the foam tickle my toes.
Being chased – this is a very common, universal dream, as we all have times in our lives where we are either running away from ourselves or the things that we think can hurt us. Who is the person chasing you – a monster, wild woman etc? Could it be an aspect of yourself? (To be discussed further in this chapter).
This is by no means an exhaustive list. There are plenty of good books about dreams out there – depending on your needs, e.g. you might want the mystical interpretations or folklore, rather than psychological, etc. Mythic themes are useful in the interpretation of dreams – but we still need to focus on how the symbols speak to us personally.
What if we ignore them?
If we ignore our dreams (especially if they are important) our subconscious may eventually create a nightmare, where there is more urgency and the symbols become more exaggerated and sometimes terrifying. Even though nightmares can be frightening, they do afford us the opportunity to dissect difficult things or situations in our lives, and help us realize that things aren’t as grim as we thought they were.
That knowledge helped me with the fear I used to feel in dreams. Now – even when I see a terrifying image – I’m more like a scientist, trying to figure it out whilst in the dream. (Lucid dreaming is covered further on in this chapter.) Facing our ‘demons’ is usually the reason the nightmare comes to us – if we’ve ignored the messages in previous dreams. We need to treat dreams like mini documentaries and take them seriously. Our subconscious is like a reporter on the edge, feeding back relevant information – the news!
An interesting exercise in discovering your personal symbology:
Symbols are everywhere – as encapsulations of all kinds of information, depending on how they are used and who is looking at them. Interpreting symbols – even whilst awake – is a great exercise in understanding your reactions to imagery. For example: you’re walking past a field and see some horses. Meditate on what they mean to you – e.g. strength, freedom, spirit?
If you see leaves falling from a tree – what does it invoke in you? Maybe the cycle of life, the autumn years, waste? If you witness an argument, can you read between the lines as to what’s really going on – or are they just having a spirited discussion? What does their body language tell you?
Or perhaps you see an abandoned car by the side of the road. Does it represent a discarded life, forgotten dreams, rubbish? Doing this exercise not only helps you hone your interpretation skills, it also trains your mind to analyze things from different perspectives. Believe me – it’s amazing how quickly this skill transfers to the actual dream and awakens the possibility for understanding as well as lucid dreaming.
This is where we actually become aware that we are dreaming, whilst in the dream. This is a level of consciousness that allows us to keep a foot in each world simultaneously, bridging the conscious and subconscious realms. In this state, we are able to delve deeper into our unconscious motivations and the psyche, and to work out issues (some of them serious). We are also able to explore the wonderful dream realm and are only limited by our imaginations!
The word lucid comes from the Latin ‘lux’ – meaning light – which is interesting, as it is about the concept of ‘shedding light’ on the subject. While this is a fascinating experience, it is by no means easy. Sometimes it happens randomly without any prompting from our conscious mind; other times – it needs to be planned and ‘activated’.
One way to activate the experience is to program yourself – before you go to sleep. A little later I’ll talk about incubating dreams. One of the methods is to tell yourself before you go to sleep, that you will be alert during the dream and that something – a symbol or action – will prompt you to snap to and recognize that you are dreaming – therefore taking control of it. Apparently lucid dreaming also reduces the frequency of nightmares, so it’s obviously a useful tool. It has been noted that children dream lucidly – more than adults – though the reasons why seem to be a little vague – such as sleeping patterns, etc.
Being more aware of your subconscious world, through analysis and dream interpretation is helpful – as well as meditation – which assists in helping you gain more control over your inner world. Again, programming yourself is useful – especially when coupled with hypnosis (or self hypnosis – which can be gained with such things as affirmations, meditation and creative visualization – even combining the two: pathworking.)
If you program yourself before you go to sleep – so that you will be alerted once an ‘unreal’ action or event occurs in the dream, it should prompt you to take note (hopefully!) If there’s a common theme in your dreams that could be considered as ‘unreal’ – a great exaggeration of reality or some other recurring symbol – program yourself to recognize it when dreaming, in order to trigger the process of lucidity. If you often dream of blue birds, stairs going this way and that or suddenly ‘teleporting’ to some other place (unusual or not) etc – then use them as ‘lucidity triggers’.
This doesn’t mean – by any stretch of the imagination – that you will be 100% successful. It takes a lot of practice and programming. Just make sure you continue recording and analyzing your dreams – maybe you’ll achieve and possibly even master lucid dreaming! (It’s funny how it becomes easier when you take the time to dissect them. It’s like your subconscious mind ‘knows’ it’s being watched!) I’ve met a few people who dream lucidly, all the time – so just keep at it. I assure you, it’s definitely worth the effort.
Be mindful that there will be times that the lucidity will slip through your fingers. It’s easy to get caught up in the dream world and forget that you’re dreaming. One way to trigger lucidity is to recognize – in the dream – that what’s going on wouldn’t happen in waking life. For example: people with apples for heads, or driving cars without your hands on the wheel, etc.
For some people, it helps to wake themselves up – with an alarm clock or some other method (like drinking too much liquid before going to bed, so you’ll wake up – hopefully – to go to the toilet). Then stay awake for a while, whether it’s 15 minutes or an hour. The reason for this is that it ‘disturbs’ the sleeping patterns and sometimes evokes lucidity. But be careful that you don’t disrupt your whole sleeping pattern. You don’t want to spend your days walking around like a zombie – or ending up an insomniac!
Another method is to try to retain consciousness whilst going to sleep. This is difficult to do but the theory is that you’ll stay alert for the entry into the dream state – therefore – be lucid and aware that you’re dreaming. I have tried this myself, but found for me – I might be aware for a few minutes and then forget that I am dreaming. Vigilance and perseverance is definitely a factor.
(This topic could’ve been included in Chapter 10: Ritual – but it’s relevant here and by no means is the only method for the incubation of dreams.)
One way – as discussed – is to program yourself before going to sleep – such as repeating a mantra, like “I will remember my dreams” or “I will be totally aware that I am dreaming”. The same could be done for a particular dream that deals with a certain issue. For example: “I will dream about a solution to…”
To start with, I find it useful to read a certain type of book before bed, or listen to a particular type of music, watch a movie etc, – that embodies the kind of issues and images I’d like to have in my dream. Also, talk about it during the day (to yourself or others) as though it’s an established fact – that you’re going to have a certain type of dream. A good way to achieve ‘programming’ of yourself is – of course – ritual. Ritual speaks to the subconscious, so it’s an excellent tool for dream incubation.
You don’t need to be a witch to conduct a ritual. We have little rituals in our life – every day. You might want to align yourself with a particular archetype or deity. Even if you’re Christian, you could ask Jesus to help guide you in the process. Other deities could be: Morpheus – the Greek god of dreams, Nanshe – Sumerian Goddess of prophecy (assists in interpretation of dreams), Chandra – Hindu moon god, Iduna – Scandinavian goddess of dreams and divination, or Bes – Egyptian god, whose likeness was carved on headboards to chase nightmares away. (It is said that if you draw a picture of him on your left hand and wrap it in a black cloth – that has been dedicated to Isis – he will bring you the dream you want.)
There are many other deities out there (or you can use an archetype – whatever makes you comfortable.) The correspondences you can use when conducting your ritual could be as follows:
DAY: Monday PLANET: Moon COLOR: White or silver DEITY: your choice GEM: Smoky Quartz, Moonstone, Celestite, Jade HERBS: Marigold, Honeysuckle, Sandalwood, Cinnamon, Elderflowers, Jasmine (you don’t have to use all of them – even one herb/plant will suffice.)
SWAN – helps interpret dream symbols
BAT – a messenger from the subconscious
DRAGON – guards the treasures of the subconscious realm
The above is just a guide – you might not want to incorporate ritual at all, and might be more comfortable just meditating. It’s up to you to choose the methods that you feel most comfortable with and then go from there.
Dream Incubation Ritual
If you like – draw a picture of the deity/archetype you’re going to use – as well as a power animal (or all three), if you like. Write out your question or statement regarding what kind of dream you want to have. Get a white or silver candle, consecrate it with sandalwood oil (again – depending on your preference) and prepare a cauldron or dish for your charcoal and incense – made from the herbs/plants – and set it on your altar (or bedside table – being careful with the flame of the candle and charcoal.) You can place the gems on your altar/bedside table or put them under your pillow (with the note, if you won’t be burning it in the ritual).
Light the candle, sprinkle some of the incense on the lit charcoal and call the quarters. Invoke the deities etc that you wish to have assist you in the ritual. Cast a protective circle and state the following:
“Hear me – Morpheus – God of dreams, I invoke Thee” (or whoever you’re using) “I seek your assistance tonight. Bring me a dream that answers this question” (either put the note in the cauldron to burn or put it under your pillow.) Also, you can change the wording to suit yourself. Then state:
“As this candle burns – the energies of dream incubation will be released. Thank you Morpheus” – or whoever your guide is. Then meditate on the flame – doing creative visualization incorporating the Swan, or Bat or Dragon (or all three!) – giving you the answers you desire. Mix it up to suit your purpose.
When you’re done, close the quarters and circle, go to bed and go over your question in symbolic format – e.g. if you want to know how to combat an emotional issue – see the issue as a tear falling down your face, and so on. Use your imagination – which speaks to your subconscious. When you awake, record your impressions. As I said before, you don’t have to conduct a ritual – it’s just that ritual is a great way of programming your subconscious will. If you prefer to just meditate, or put the gems under your pillow with the note, that’s perfectly fine. The important thing is – to set the tone for your desired outcome.
You might notice that the symbols in your dream seem totally nonsensical in regards to what you asked for, but don’t be discouraged. This is always the way the subconscious appears (at first.) Do analyze the dream and keep a look out for the next few nights – as the answer might not come straight away.
Now (finally!) we’re going to delve into the ‘meat’ of the topic – which is the discussion of the basic archetypes and the individuation process. I don’t want to go into depth regarding the psychological processes, as they are covered in the following chapter – Self analysis. (Not included in this post – sorry!)
Carl Jung regarded the individuation process as involving the developmental path that we all take during our lives, taking into consideration the fact that each of us are individuals with unique destinies. He stated that we have two personalities – the outward, ‘conscious’ personality and the hidden personality, contained in the ‘collective unconscious’. Under the conscious self is a well of repressed, ignored or forgotten feelings, memories and behavioral patterns – which he called the ‘personal unconscious’. Beneath that lies the ‘collective unconscious’ – a depository which is massive and encompasses all the behaviors and imagery that have been recorded right throughout history, since ancient times.
Jung believed that this collective unconscious – this depository of human memories etc – shows how history still has an incredible impact on us and our lives.
The Archetypal Stages of Individuation
1/ The Shadow: this is the archetype that embodies all the personal traits that we ignore, deny or repress. It usually represents itself as the same sex as the dreamer – or as a monster, etc. (Depending on the level of repression, etc.)
2/ The Anima/Animus: usually the archetype that represents the opposite sex to the dreamer (or the male/female aspects of the dreamer.)
3/ The Self: this is the archetype of the integrated persona – the ‘whole’ self, usually represented by a wise man or woman. (But it can take on other forms such as animals, inanimate objects – in nature and man made – or a variety of human forms.) In our dreams, we are often pulled back by our past and prompted by our future. These energies are sometimes personified – or objectified – by our archetypes. The individuation process is when we begin to integrate the whole of our consciousness into a singular being – rather than a fragmented being. Dreams are the individuation process reports – they tell us how we’re going in relation to our integration of various personas, etc.
The archetypes appear in our lives through the individuation process, which is determined by the type of person we are. This is why each path for each person is different.
Usually, the individuation process involves the second stage of life, according to Jung. He believed that we spend the first half of our lives building the personality, and when that’s accomplished (if not, then the process is difficult to say the least!) – then we can focus on going within.
During the first half of life, we learn how to live and how to deal with the world and the people in our lives. Our parents are the be all and end all – when we are young. They are the authorities and what they say goes (Usually!) We become who we are depending on their expectations and how they present themselves to us – often mimicking their behavior. We all enter into this world with a blueprint of who we can become. It needs to be able to adapt to all the different energies, experiences and people we encounter, in order for us to fulfill our destiny. We all have inherent skills, abilities and desires – which are sometimes denied, ignored or repressed in order to satisfy the expectations of others.
According to Jung, one or more personalities grow around these ignored or repressed desires etc – which become the Shadow. When we have new issues arise in our life and we don’t know how to deal with them, the Shadow figure appears in our dreams – which symbolizes the energies and so on – that we need in order to deal with them. Jung said that the Shadow appears when a new cycle is about to begin.
To start with, the Shadow appears as non-human, like a monster, zombie, etc. Later on they become fully human, the same sex as us – but still frightening. Later still, they become more of a nuisance – rather than a scary persona. We then look down at them and put up with their presence. Further on, they become acquaintances (although not important), then they evolve into friends, family members, or even partners. If we have integrated their traits into our persona, they will no longer appear in our dreams – as they have become a part of us.
If we continue to deny our true identity, the Shadow will pursue us in nightmares, which is why we need to stop and engage the Shadow, to find out what it wants. (This is why shadow figures appear in nightmares and dreams – because we have become too set in our ways or have forgotten our true path.) When we think that we are perfect – the Shadow figure contrasts this with the opposite persona – imperfect, dark, menacing etc. The shadow teaches us about how misguided we are about our desires.
When we repress ourselves sexually, a shadow figure appears who emulates all kinds of sexual ‘aberrations’. The more we deny the shadow, the more power we give it. After a while, it becomes too powerful for us to ignore. We either slip up and do things we’d rather forget – or project it onto others. (Especially those who aren’t as inhibited). If we acknowledge the shadow – we can evolve. If we repress it – we suffer it’s wrath. In order to understand the shadow, we need to see our projections and break them down.
If we don’t examine our hidden selves they build to monster proportions and break through to our conscious lives. If you come across someone in your dream who frightens you or if you fight with them – see the qualities in them that correlate to your personality and integrate them. The more the conflict – the more likely that you’re dealing with a shadow figure.
The Anima and Animus
The Anima is the males’ feminine aspect and the Animus is the masculine aspect of the female. It’s more difficult to integrate the Anima/Animus than the shadow. Intense emotional energies occur when we transform from the shadow to the Anima/Animus. (Once the Shadow qualities become integrated, the Anima/Animus issues appear – although I’ve found they can occur simultaneously.) The shadow appears to alert us to our hidden, ignored, forgotten or repressed desires and the Anima/Animus takes it from there. The world of the Anima/Animus is the testing ground for how we conduct ourselves in relationships (personal and with the world.) Our issues with our parents are also reflected in the workings of the Anima/Animus.
The Anima/Animus appears in our dreams in many formats. As god/goddess – such as Mars (embodying war, fortitude, etc) and Aphrodite (embodying beauty, love etc). They also appear as a variety of different archetypes – like the mother, father etc. They personify those particular qualities that we need when we are about to go through a transformation. The Anima/Animus shows us how misguided we can be about our emotions and relationships. In the shadow stage – we discover that the ‘monster’ is actually us. In the Anima/Animus stage – we discover that we are connected to everyone and everything. The Self teaches us that we need to discover our inherent nature – in order to be wholly integrated.
The Self is even harder to interpret than the Shadow or Anima/Animus. As an archetype – the Self encompasses many images and forms – which is what makes it so difficult to interpret. The Self is who we were destined to be; the supreme goal. It’s the divine aspect of ourselves. As we have an idealized view of ourselves (or who we should be), we usually use the archetype of the Self to measure other people against. When we stray from our true Self – a Shadow figure appears – but as we draw closer to our Self – the Shadow becomes less of a monster, etc and more like ourselves.
In dreams, the Self can be represented by an animal or even a tree, flower, river etc. Jung also believed that the Self could be symbolized by things such as mandalas and other forms.
These images often appear in our dreams when some kind of order is being restored within ourselves. If we don’t see the image, animal etc as an expression or symbol of ourselves – then integration will be difficult. When we dream about animals, usually depicted as aloof or disinterested, we need to realize that the Self has appeared to us.
Reptiles – especially snakes, are usually representative of the Self, as they appear when a new cycle is about to commence. They embody wisdom and powerful instincts. Apparently the most common representations of the Self as an animal are: snakes, horses, bulls, elephants, bears, black and white birds, fish – even turtles, spiders, snails & beetles!
The “Mana” personality: in dreams – is a being with magical powers and is evocative of the occult. Once the Anima/Animus is integrated, the Mana personality appears – sometimes before the Self does – and is considered a lesser representation of the Self. It forces us to question out true identity – to ask ourselves the question – “Who am I?” This is the part of the individuation process that is key – “How do I go from who I’ve become to who I’m supposed to be?”
We are ‘self actualized’ when our motivations are ‘pure’ and not colored by external expectations. Put another way, we can only truly be ourselves when we follow our own path rather than someone else’s – or their idea of what our path should be. Self actualized people are those who adhere to concepts such as truth, justice and beauty. They cope with life better than others, no matter how difficult the journey is. They truly ‘feel’ or experience the good and the bad in life. They are truly connected to their emotions, but once felt and expressed – are more able to move on, quicker than those not self actualized.
We can’t be our true selves without having confronted and dealt with who we are and what we want in life, without other people’s projections interfering. (Notwithstanding solicited advice, legitimate concerns etc.) According to Jung, there are strange side effects when the Self appears, such as emotional outbursts – that seem to happen for no good reason; or strange illnesses that seemingly appear out of nowhere. Other symptoms might include prophetic dreams – which come true and other ‘paranormal’ activity. This is the time when we need to guard against assuming we have become everyone’s ‘guru’ – especially towards those we think are less evolved.
This apparently occurs because of the archetypal energy released when the Self appears. We can counteract this distorted use of the energy by channeling it through a creative outlet. This is the process of sharing the collective unconscious with the world.
Final notes on dreams
We surely now understand why analyzing our dreams is important. When we take notice of our dreams they take notice of us noticing them! We form a ‘bond’ with the dream realm and it reacts accordingly. See how your dreams change once you actually start taking them seriously. When analyzing your symbols, use free word association and stream of consciousness methods – let your imagination run wild. This helps amplify the meaning, giving you every possible angle, so that you have a better chance of finding what makes the most sense to you.
Words are also symbols – check out their meanings in the dictionary, thesaurus and even world history – to see if you can shed any light on the subject. If your dream resembles a mythic story or fairy tale, research it to see if you can gain any more insights. I can not emphasize how important it is to record your dreams. Give them titles and dates so that you can access them easier. Use drawings if you can’t find the right words to describe them. You’ll discover that your dreams contain many wild adventures and opportunities for growth that will literally change your life.
Dream Blogging – Pants down
I had this dream last night. First – I was in the building across from my work, and I knew that I had to get back there, but something was holding me back. I remember feeling that I didn’t have to return to work – and even though there was a sense that I ought to return – the possibility of exploring the new building was overpowering.
Then I was in someone’s home and needed to pee. The house was a little messy or haphazard – with things everywhere – and the rooms were disjointed and confusing. I was finally told where the toilet was and when I entered the room – it was a combination of a bedroom and toilet. It belonged to a young man who was playing video games in the corner, close to the door. I was embarrassed to go in and do my business – but I had to go, so I went over and pulled my pants down, then sat down on the toilet and started peeing.
I was worried that the young man would turn around and see me – but he didn’t seem to care. Then a door next to the toilet opened and a middle aged woman started coming in – but I tried to tell her that I wasn’t finished. She also didn’t seem to care – but I was embarrassed and wanted to finish so I could get out.
THEMES: Exposure, being discovered, decisions, lack of privacy.
SYMBOLS: Work, toilet, half-naked, urination, games, small and strange rooms/house.
EMOTIONS: Desire to run away, indecisiveness, embarrassment, annoyance.
ARCHETYPES: Young man, Middle aged woman.
INTERPRETATION: In regards to the first scene, the idea of not wanting to go back to work is obvious. As I am trying to build a ‘career’ with my writing and Numerology business, I’m finding it increasingly annoying to have to keep going through the motions and working a 9-5 job, when all I want to do is be creative and focus on what I really enjoy doing. (Don’t we all?!) So, hiding in the building across the street from my workplace – trying to decide whether to go back or not – indicates the internal battle that rages inside me. I have to work to pay the bills – a steady job. It takes up most of my time, when I could be spending all my time on my writing and other interests.
Being in a strange house with strange rooms could represent how I feel with the promoting and marketing of my book. Trying to navigate my way around all the daunting elements of promoting my book and business is confusing, time consuming and sometimes frustrating. Trying to find a place to pee signifies the side of me that just wants to let go and be myself. Urinating also symbolizes getting rid of refuse. Not being able to find a suitable place to do so could represent my annoyance with trying to get things in order and be who I want to be.
We’ve all had the naked in public dreams, and they usually symbolize our fear of being ‘found out’ – or our true natures being discovered. Sitting on the toilet, as the young man showed absolutely no interest (aside from the fact that I was a stranger peeing in his room!) – might indicate how I feel about revealing my soul in public when no one seems to care. When the woman came in and also seemed uninterested in what I was doing – it didn’t alleviate my embarrassment with being caught with my pants down. I was annoyed that she didn’t listen to me, so it rang true for me – in regards to my book taking so long to get off the ground. (Three people have actually paid for it – at a measly $3.95 – and 69 others have downloaded it for free. I have one great review – from a stranger – with 5 stars. Every author understands how frustrating it is – especially when you’re self published!)
The young man could also be my animus – signifying the side of me who just wants to do what I want to do and not be bothered with anyone else! The fact that he was playing games symbolizes how I feel about all this. I sometimes feel that I’m just ‘playing’ and should get back to working a ‘normal’ job. The woman could represent my apparent flippancy regarding how I am putting myself out there.
SUMMARY: Pretty much summarizes how I feel about trying to forge ahead with my writing etc. I am revealing a hell of a lot about myself with the process of promoting and marketing – which is refreshing and frightening at the same time. I want to connect with people – especially my readers, and that means sharing myself. Maybe the dream was trying to tell me to be more discriminating about what and how I share. (Funny – as I’m here writing about my dreams and peeing!)
I feel – sometimes – that no one cares, but it’s not true. I have great feedback – mostly from strangers, although I’d like some people who are close to me to show more interest. Maybe it’s my subconscious expressing my fear of being irrelevant – baring my soul to an invisible or uncaring audience?
Dream Blogging – Gang of Animals
I had this dream yesterday – but was so tired last night after work – so I’m posting it late!
In the dream, I was walking down a road on an overcast day. I saw a gang of animals heading towards me on the footpath. There was a dog (pitbull), some cats and a strange, floating pinecone with an owl’s face peering out of the front. (The pinecone was horizontal, flying low.) It was a fantasy creature obviously – but in the dream I was mystified – trying to find out what kind of creature it was.
One of the cats was white with ginger patches. It had a large paper bag attached to one of its’ back legs – as though it had worn the bag for pants, but had stepped out of one of the leg holes. The leg was poking out of the other side of the bag – and was bloodied and broken. When I got closer to try and help it, I noticed that it was distressed – but it kept floating along with the other animals.
The dog seemed protective of the cat – but at first I thought that it was responsible for the cat’s injuries. Then I realized that the cat had been in a car accident and that it was quite old. When I tried to pick the cat up – it felt like a bag of bones. It purred when I petted it and I tried to help – but I wondered if the purring was just a stress reaction. I decided to follow it home to see if I could alert the owner and once we got to its’ house – the owner showed up.
She was an older hippy woman who pulled up in an old, white car that was beaten up and neglected. There were dirty, stuffed animals along the back window of the car. She was concerned about the cat – who was now lying on the grass in the front yard – waiting to be attended to.
THEME: Concern, dealings with animals, travelling, old and beaten up.
SYMBOLS: Cat, Dog, Strange creatures, road, car, stuffed animals, paper bag, injuries.
EMOTIONS: Concern, compassion, confusion.
ARCHETYPES: Old woman, animals.
INTERPRETATION: Some of this was obvious to me – as I’ve said in my previous dream interpretation – I’ve been feeling old and beat up lately! Walking down the road in the middle of the day – travelling through middle age. (The road was sloping slightly downwards.) The animals coming towards me represent various elements of my psyche wanting to be analyzed – or the process of the integrated self. For example: the dog was in good health but had a twinge of pink on its’ nose – hence the reason why I’d thought it had bitten the cat’s leg.
The other cats were fine – ambling along – but the old, injured cat represents how I’ve been feeling of late. I don’t know if it was jet lag or a virus – but I’ve been very tired for the last couple of weeks and have had strange symptoms – such as sore hips, stiff joints and glands swelling up. I think the flimsy bag on the cat’s leg symbolizes my haphazard attempts at taking care of myself! I try to soldier on and tell everyone that I’m fine when I’m not – for fear of appearing old and feeble.
The pinecone owl stumped me at first – but then I realized that it represented the mystical or spiritual side of myself that I’m still trying to understand. The pinecone symbolizes seeds spent – therefore old age. (I’m not dead yet – at 48!!) The owl is a nocturnal animal – so am I. It also represents wisdom and secret worlds – so maybe the fact that it was half-pinecone means that I’m entering the realm of the crone. (It’s funny – as I’ve always loved pine trees and owls!)
I think the lady also represents myself. The car symbolizes how I travel through life. (Roughshod and breakneck – sometimes!) The stuffed animals in the back window could symbolize aspects of myself that have taken a back seat – or have been neglected.
SUMMARY: Again – to slow down and take care of myself – but also, to acknowledge the hidden aspects of my true self. I need to accept getting older and rejoice in this new phase. I have been leaning away from spirituality over the past few fears – towards atheism. Maybe the mystical realms don’t have to be necessarily attached to a religion per se. Nonetheless – I have been feeling the lack of connection to that side of myself. Time to explore!
Dream Blogging – Thwarted
This is the first dream to be posted for interpretation. I’ve called it “Thwarted” – as that’s pretty much the whole theme of the dream. Even though I’m usually very good with being on time – even ridiculously early – being late is a common theme for me, in my dreams. Probably because I hate being late!
I was staying at an old woman’s place in Australia and had left with my grandson to catch a plane back to the U.S. My grandson – Leon – is four years old, and he was decked out like he was going on an expedition! He looked like an intrepid traveler, dressed in khaki and carrying his little bag. As we were walking up the driveway (it was night time) – I realized that I didn’t have my luggage. We went back to the old woman’s house to get them, but when we got there – it dawned on me that I hadn’t even packed my bags!
I started scrambling to jam everything into the suitcases. My stuff was strewn all over the bedroom – with clothes, books and papers under the bed, across the floor and on the chair and dressing table. Every time I thought I’d packed the last thing – something else caught my eye so – yet again – I had to open the suitcase and stuff it in.
As I was doing this, Leon said in his cute little voice, “What about my spoon?” I asked the old woman to get his spoon but she was ignoring me – just hanging around in the background. I kept obsessing about the spoon and packing my luggage, but was then distracted by an array of beautiful perfume bottles on the dressing table. I couldn’t decide which one to take with me.
The clock was ticking and I panicked about not getting to the airport on time. My heart was aching for Leon as I couldn’t find the spoon – but the perfume bottles continued to distract me.
THEME: Being late, disorganized, thwarted plans, neglected responsibility.
SYMBOLS: Clock, Luggage, Spoon, Perfume.
EMOTIONS: Panic, sadness, frustration, disorientation, distractions.
ARCHETYPES: Little boy, Old woman.
INTERPRETATION: This is a common theme for me – fearing that I will miss out on meeting deadlines due to unpreparedness. Since I was a teenager, I’ve had dreams about being late. I know this sounds odd – but back then, I would get some kind of a sexual thrill about being late. As I’ve matured – frustration has become the key element – no thrill!
I think this could be drilled down to – fear of missing out. I have had to deal with feeling like the rug’s been pulled out from under me – on and off – for a long time, which feeds these kinds of dreams. I am always very organized when it comes to planning – with my endless checklists and dry runs, etc. I am always annoyed when things don’t go to plan – and even though I do well with thinking outside the box and adapting – sometimes it gets to me. This could be my subconscious (or unconscious) mind – telling me that no matter what and no matter how much I plan – things can go wrong – so I just need to ease up and accept what I can’t change, etc. To go with the flow.
Having my grandson in the dream represents responsibility for others, especially those who depend on me. He was prepared – apart from having his spoon. A spoon represents sufficient nourishment, measuring medicine, comfort (especially for children – knowing that they have enough to sustain them). As my anima – the masculine side of my psyche – Leon could be representing the youthful, outgoing, powerful side of me that needs to be sustained – hence the spoon. I have been grappling with getting older lately – not feeling like I have as much energy to get things done.
He could also have appeared to show how a typical grandmother feels towards her grandchildren – concern for their well-being. I did feel remorse for obsessing about the perfume in the dream – rather than putting more effort into finding the spoon. Maybe it symbolizes my fear of not being considered sexually viable anymore, as I paid more attention to the perfume – or the alluring side of my psyche – rather than the spoon, which represented my stamina, agility – or even the idea that I should be ‘feeding my soul’ instead.
The old woman was probably another version of myself. If she symbolized how I feel in regards to getting older, in the background, unresponsive – then it makes sense. That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling of late – unable to cope, forgotten, less worthy, etc. (Especially when my ego is involved with trying to get my first novel out there!)
Luggage or suitcases – pretty straight forward. They were unpacked and I struggled to get them in order. Not being able to get my shit together. I’ve been feeling that a lot lately!
SUMMARY: I need to slow down and take stock. I need to remember the important things in life and not to be so hard on myself. Having said that – I also think that the dream was telling me to focus on things that are important and not to waste precious time on things that don’t help me evolve as a human being.
Please feel free to comment or ask questions!
Something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time is blogging about dreams and their interpretations. A variety of things held me back – in particular – the idea that others might be bored with someone else’s dreams. I remember a line from “The Ref” – starring Kevin Spacey (Lloyd) and Judy Davis (Caroline). They play a couple whose marriage is on the rocks, and in the beginning they are in therapy, talking about Caroline’s dream. Lloyd is annoyed with her repeating a very personal dream and tells her that no one cares. It was hilarious – but I wondered if that was true – or if he was just annoyed with her revealing their personal problems.
True – we’re all far more interested in our own dreams than those of others – but what has finally pushed me to start writing about my own, is the fact that I have a lot of followers on my Dreamworld board on Pinterest. On that board, I pin interesting images and interpret them as though they are scenes from dreams. I’ve studied dream interpretation for a long time – and even though I’m certainly not an expert – people often come to me to ask for my advice and interpretation. (Here’s a link to my Dreamworld board: https://www.pinterest.com/lilithu/the-dreamworld/)
Another reason was that I enjoy dream interpretation (especially using the Jungian technique, archetypes, Shadow work, symbolism etc) – is that it truly helps with understanding how I’m travelling in life. The unconscious is the repository for all our hopes, desires, fears and things that affect our psychological make-up. It speaks to our conscious mind through symbolism, puns and even direct messages. When you pay attention to what your dreaming mind is trying to communicate – you can unlock secrets about yourself and gain new insights into problems or issues with your psyche, as well as those involving others and situations, etc.
I also welcome input from others – as I don’t always get it right – hence another reason I’m starting this public journey! I’m happy to assist with deciphering the dreams of others – so please feel free to share in the comments section, and I’ll endeavor to give it my best shot. (Even though the best interpretation comes from the dreamer – as only they know their true selves and what motivates them – it’s amazing what remains hidden, due to things such as refusal to face certain issues, fear or firmly held beliefs that block true understanding.)
Apparently we dream every night – but I don’t always remember my dreams, or maybe I just remember snippets, etc. I have common themes such as tidal waves, dark spaces, animals etc – like we all do. Nightmares are less common now that I’m older and have grappled with most of my demons! I find that they don’t inflict such deep fear, like they used to.
My novel – “Delwyn of the Realms – Storming Archives Book 1” – is all about a woman who accesses the dreamworld through a mirror portal. I use my knowledge of dream interpretation – as well as my experiences with astral projection and hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucinations – in my writing. Here’s a link to the book on Amazon:
I will try to post at least two dreams per week – so stay tuned!