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People or Person

Person and Individuals

There must have been some dreams that made you wonder why a known person appeared in them. This is especially puzzling if you haven’t seen that person for years. I experience this all the time. Everyone I ever met in my life keeps showing up in my dreams. I can’t blame day residue for it. If somebody appears in my dream, there has to be a special reason for it.

I’ve been entering characters in my symbol book for a long time. Let me introduce you to a few. There’s Peter, one of my strongest helpers. He showed up riding on a horse in my ‘Cracking The Ice’ dream. Riding the horse he managed to crack the ice on a small lake, something I was unable to do on my own. I had to think for a while before I understood exactly why he appeared in my dream. Peter went to the same elementary school as I. One thing I eventually remembered about him was his inventiveness. This led me to realise that I use the appearance of Peter in a dream as a clue to consider whether I need to think of a more ingenious approach to an issue I am confronting.

There’s Frits, whose role I only recently got to understand. I could never see any pattern in the dreams he appeared in. Frits is a high school acquaintance, somebody who was often around, even though we weren’t really friends. I never fully understood it at the time. But it recently hit me that he was especially around when I was rebelling against the boredom of high school. He was having fun whenever I broke the rules, or did something else exciting. With that insight, looking back at the dreams, there is a pattern. Whenever my behaviour in a dream is more active than usual, he is around. He is the part of me that is having fun, because I’m not aware that I’m having fun myself.

Apart from defining how you see one of your dream characters, and what relationship you have had to them in the past, as Harry suggests, it helps to simply consider how you feel about them, what of their characteristics are most important or noticeable to you. But occasionally it isn’t what you see in their character, but what you feel about them that is important. For instance a person who has frequently appeared in my dreams is a woman called Ann. I felt a lot of sexual attraction to Ann – although she may have felt nothing for me – and she appears in my dreams whenever loving feelings or closeness are being dealt with.

A man I used to work for, Leo, has appeared in dreams where a problem regarding outer activity was concerned. So Leo represents for me ways of dealing with difficulties I face in the world. He is the confidence and courage I have innately to meet things constructively.

But many characters in dreams are not people you have ever met or known, not even characters from films, plays or books. So you can’t look back on them and ask yourself what you observed or felt about them. In such cases it is most helpful to imagine yourself as that character and describe who you are, exactly as you are and how you act in the dream – as the dream character. As an example of this, one character in a dream, an old man, was dying. He was nobody I knew. When I imagined myself as him and described what I felt, and what was happening to me, it was clear he represented the experience I was facing at the time. I was letting my old life, a phase of my life, my old self, die. This was difficult but it was happening, and the dream helped me clarify what I was facing.

One of the most helpful ways to find the qualities of a dream character is to give them a name. For instance you might basically feel that a man you have seen or know slightly seems a practical outwardly capable person. So you could give him the name of Mr. Practical. Mr Practical therefore is your ability in dealing with everyday life, or outward activities. There could also be Mr Sexy, Miss How Do I Look, and so on. Naming characters gets easier if you stand in their role imaginatively as described above. For more information on this see standing in role under peer dream work.

But remember that a word in a sentence changes meaning, even subtly, as it is placed in a different context. The word light, for instance, can be used by saying, “I switched on the light.” Or we can say, “I felt very light-hearted.” Or even, “There was no light.”

Each of these brings about a different sense of surroundings or events. Similarly, the context of a character in your dream may change what you have defined of his or her qualities. So you must look to the context to get the final understanding as to what you dream character indicates in that particular dream.

A person who appeared in many of my dreams was a woman named Su. My relationship with Su was one in which I had been trying to learn to love her without being possessive or grasping. So in my dreams she always depicted my attempts to love in that way, or my attempts to learn a fuller love.

In one dream Su is shown paddling an inflatable dingy to a local town, where I am going to meet her. But there were difficulties about this. At the time of the dream I was dealing with a lot of people in very direct relationships, and Su in this dream shows that I still haven’t ‘met’ or integrated the ability to love without grasping or wanting to posses. The difficulty in the dream suggests that I find it difficult to express this more open love.

In a later dream, experienced just after I had led a weekend activity, I dreamt Su was visiting or with us. But she didn’t look like Su at all, being dark, indecisive and a weaker personality. I was talking with her, or just with her, when I realised that Mike (a close friend) was upstairs with my wife. He had arrived back from America. I wanted him to meet Su. I wanted to hug him, but I also wanted Su to see me do this. So although I hug him with love, there was also something of the purposely done thing about it.

Here Su is actually with me, in my house, so this is an entirely different context than with the previous dream. This shows a fuller integration with unconditional love. But the part at the end where I hope Su will see me ‘loving’ Mike points out that I am still moved by desires for acclaim and public attention.

So to summarise, consider each character and discover what qualities, faults, weaknesses or strength they depict for you. Give them a name, as this helps you remember their quality. But look to the context of the dream to find the detailed and changing expression of what the character depicts.

Couple: Depending on the context of the couple in the dream, they can represent the dreamers parents and the family situation and environment at the age of the couple portrayed; if the dreamer has been married, can depict the dreamer’s marriage situation at the age of the couple; hopes for a relationship; possible outcomes of a relationship; friendship; partnership; some sort of relationship.

Dead people: The influence those people still have in your life – i.e. you are still influenced by them, or your relationship with them, even though they are dead. Feelings about death.

Group of people: A group of people, as in Ivor’s dream below, can depict how one meets the pressure of social norms; public opinion. See: crowd.

Inner People: When you think about a lover, a friend or a person you know, you are only taking in your thoughts, impressions and feelings about them. So many people do not realise that they have an inner person equally as powerful as the external person you know. You have taken in millions of bits of memory, lessons learnt, life experiences along with all the feelings or problems met by meeting or living with them, and they change you and make you the person you are. The memories and experience we gather unconsciously change us and are not lost. It is part of you and is symbolised in dreams as a person or event. Such an inner person can appear in dreams because you still carry the memories or impressions of them, and so they influenced what you hold within you.

Many people are lost and feel as if they cannot more, are trapped, even by past loves. But in fact the more people we can ‘digest’ or accept as part of our own experience, the more freedom we have. Each person we have within us in this way is a new space, a new area or space to live in.

Example: Then I slowly became aware of a deeper sense of the discomfort. It was a feeling of being stuck in one place and not being able to move. It wasn’t anything to do with moving physically but was as an awareness. It felt awful and I tried to move but couldn’t. The only way of describing it was as if we are all made out of the same stuff – as an example concrete – and as such we filled all space. So the little space I filled could not move because all around was filled by others. I felt really stuck and wondered what I could do, but there seemed no way out of it. Yet I could not believe this was really how things were.

Most of this was spontaneous thoughts and movement through the experience, so that was how I was led to thinking about my cousin Sid again, and his situation of being constantly linked with his mother even after he died. Then I realised that I was linked with Rita, and in feeling that I realised that I could move in at least two positions – me and Rita – because of the loving connection I felt.

Then came a flood of realisation, every person I had loved was another position I could be in; and then I knew all the animals I had loved and even people I had a casual relationship with. But there was even more because in dreams and sessions I had become or encountered amazing things, people, creatures, the alien beings and others. I knew then that I was FREE to go anywhere and be almost anything, because their life pattern was now part of me. Then with a rush of wonder, I realised that the more people and creatures I loved, the bigger I became. See Digest

Large crowds: Enormous involvement of self in issue; ones relationship or feelings about the social environment one lives in; in groups we have a feeling of being looked at or on view – how we relate to that may be depicted by what we are doing in the dream group. See: party; roles.

Old person: It often relates to life experience even wisdom. But an old woman can depict your mother or a mother figure; and an old man your father or a father figure.

People from our past: Considering that the major part of our learning and experience occur in relationship to other people, such learning and experience can be represented by characters from the past. For instance a first boyfriend in a dream would depict all the emotions and struggles we met in that relationship, and what we learned from it or took away from it in terms of fears. Therefore dreaming often of people we knew in the past would suggest the past experiences or lessons are very active at the moment, or we are reviewing those areas of our life. A woman who had emigrated to Britain from a very different cultural background frequently dreamt, even twenty years afterwards, of people she knew in her native country. This shows her still very much in contact with her own cultural values and experiences.

Several people in a dream suggest: Not feeling lonely; involvement of many aspects of oneself in what is being dreamt about; social ability.

As social relationship is one of the most important factors outside of personal survival – and survival depends upon it – such dreams help us to clarify our individual contact with society. Human beings have an unconscious but highly developed sense of the psychological social environment. Ivor’s dream shows something we are all involved in – how we are relating to humans collectively. Are we in conflict with group behaviour and direction; do we conform, but perhaps have conflict with our individual drives; do we find a way between the opposites? Much of our response is laid down in childhood and remains unconscious unless we review it.

Example: ‘Walking alone through a small town. I was heading for a place that a group of people, in a street parallel to mine, were also heading for. A person from the group tried to persuade me that the RIGHT way to get to the place was along the street the group was walking. I knew the street did not matter, only the general direction. The person was quite disturbed by my independence. It made him or her feel uncertain to have their leader apparently questioned. I felt uncertain too for a moment.’ Ivor S.

In some dreams, a group of people represent what is meant by the word God. This may sound unlikely, but the unconscious, because it is highly capable of synthesis, often looks at humanity as a whole. Collectively humanity has vast creative and destructive powers that intimately affect us as individuals. Collectively it has performed miracles that looked at as an individual, appear impossible. How could a little human being build the great pyramid, or a space shuttle? The Bible echoes this concept in such phrases as ‘Whatever you do to the least of one of these, you do to me.’

Example: ‘I was outdoors with a group of people acting as leader. We were in the middle of a war situation with bullets playing around us. Maybe aeroplanes were also attacking. I was leading the group from cover to cover, avoiding the bullets. Paul W.

Despite feeling attacked, either by external events, or from inner conflicts, Paul is using leadership skills to deal with his own fears and tendencies. If a friend told us he had just had an argument with his wife and was going to leave her, we might sit down and counsel them by listening and helping them to sort out the hurt feelings from their long term wishes. We might point out they had felt this way before but it passed – in other words give feedback they had missed. In a similar way, our various emotions and drives often need this sort of skill employed by ourselves. This unifies us, leading to coping skills as in Paul’s dream.

Comments

-Daisy 2013-11-02 21:54:25

In my dream I I’m with my boyfriend but he looks and acts like someone else. Sometimes his identity is someone I know (last night he was an ex of many many years previous) and some times it is a completely strange and unfamiliar character. My dream always ends up with me being repulsed at him and not wanting want to be with him. In actual fact I really do want to be with my bf.

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-dreamer 2013-12-11 18:18:08

Ystrdy I dreamed of all my ex friends from school college and a cousin who I used to be very closed to!
They kept interchanging! Or jist appearing! Even in the dream I knew it wasnt possible n was surprised!
I cut off from these ppl…cos somewhere they all have hurt me! So y dis dream..after so many years!

2. Also I keep getting dreams of my guy but he keeps changing between himself n my dad! This is very weird since they haven’t even met n I m not really close to my dad anymore!

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-Guardian 2014-06-17 7:36:28

The other night I had a dream of my ex. We dated for a year and 10 months and of that we were engaged for 7 months. it was a messy split where shortly after we split she was with my best friend. In my dream she had changed. She was more beautiful than before, but she still had the little things that made her originally beautiful to me. Her attitude had changed and she wasn’t as needy. We just talked, both kind of apologizing for what had happened. In the dream we had kind of mended what was broken between us and we were going to start again. I would never truly do that because she had betrayed me and I still can’t forgive that. I’m still not quite sure what it all means because I have been know to have premonition dreams that are usually about 2-3 months in advance. Causing a lot of Deja vu moments.

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    -Tony Crisp 2014-06-17 8:27:19

    Guardian – Please realise that it is not your ex you are dreaming of, but an image of her created out of your memories and good feelings about her.

    Your dreams are showing you your inner feelings about the past relationship and all the memories needing to be digested and learned from. Remember that because you were together for a while there is no way you can ‘have nothing to do’ with someone you have been intimately involved with. It doesn’t work like that. Most people are often totally unaware of the massive experience they take in during a relationship and how it interacts with them when we love someone. In other words the memories and experience we gather unconsciously change us and are not lost. It is part of you and is symbolised in dreams as a person or event. Please read this wonderful example, it will show how much we take in from those we love or lived with.

    Also see http://dreamhawk.com/approaches-to-being/questions-2/#Summing

    Tony

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-Isabel 2015-04-11 19:10:54

I need some help. I am constantly dreaming that I am looking for a specific person. I use to dream of a boy whom I dated for a short period of time (I had no feelings for him) I would always dream about him despite the fact that I never thought of him while I was awake. This became a normal thing for me I was constantly dreaming that we were holding hands or lovingly talking, but then he would leave and I would look for him like crazy. Eventually I stopped dreaming of him and now I keep dreaming of my coworker. It is the same kind of dream and I have no romantic interest in him. I dreamt that we hugged for a while and then I left and all I wanted to do was go back to him,but even if I saw him I couldn’t touch him or reach out to him. Same dream I use to have except now with a different person. I am tired of battling with myself to understand this I hope that you can help me

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    -Anna 2015-04-13 14:43:45

    Isabel – In general when you keep on looking for someone it indicates an attempt to find: a past way of life – like wanting to have childhood lack of responsibilities; a lover from the past; trying to find an answer to a pressing problem; searching for one’s identity or sense of value in a particular setting. Also it may indicate a feeling of having lost something – youth; sexual appeal; creativity; motivation.
    The man in your dreams is nearly always an aspect of your own feelings, hopes and fears. Even if it is someone you know well, the dream image is never that person. It is certainly an image you have built out of your memories, your views of that person, your likes, dislikes and insights, the pains or pleasures, the things you learned in relationship with that man.
    The man is in general the polarisation of thought, of activity in the world, of invention and doing, even if you are a woman, you have these qualities that will probably be dreamt of under the image of a man.
    The question which arises is “Do you feel these two “images of men” have “something” which is still a potential in you and so not developed yet”?
    I ask because physically a woman is predominantly female, but also has a clitoris and produces some male hormones. Psychologically, we may only express part of our potential in everyday life. In a woman, the more physically dynamic, intellectual and socially challenging side of herself such as assertiveness and taking charge of situations may be given less expression. Apart from this some features, such as innovation and creative rational thought, may be held in latency. Even if this is not true for the modern woman, there are features of her full potential that are held as secondary or latent characteristics, and are depicted by the male in female dreams.
    See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/archetype-of-the-animus-jungs-view-of-the-male-in-the-female/
    Can you relate to (some of) this as far as your dream and/or waking life is concerned?
    Anna :-)

    Reply

-Giselle 2015-06-25 20:57:31

Ok so I usualIy remember my dreams daily and I dream pretty vividly. My dreams are like the most random things ever and its been years since I’ve had a deja vu. For example, last night I dreamt I tricked Gregory Peck to come visit me to prison but I was so nervous I fled but came back because I love Gregory Peck and he was so nice but he was gone. Then I found a note that said meet me in the grocery store and when i got there he was all in disguie like a detective looking over the sea food. We talked but I couldnt hear what about and a group of people I knew came and asked me who I was talking to. When I looked around he was gone so I realized I was crazy and talking to myself. During the whole dream he kept changing ages, which was weird. But anyway, the thing is that in a lot of my dreams I am a lot of people. As if it was a movie and I saw every new major character through first person point of view. But only one at a time. Maybe as if some of them were my personalities and they would change constantly so that I could talk to the one I was five seconds ago. So my question is what’s up with that? Is that normal?

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    -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2015-06-28 9:11:17

    Dear Giselle – I do not believe there are such dreams as “My dreams are like the most random things ever”, because the way I see all dreams is that they are a wonder of human experience.
    To dream is to discover a virtual reality so authentic, that the people we meet, the sensations we experience, and the dramas we are involved in, strike to our heart as deeply as the events we meet while awake.
    See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/the-wonder-of-imagination/
    One of the most important things about actually understanding your dream rather than interpreting it is to become the dream person or object – to actually completely identify with it while you are awake. This needs to be practiced as most people feel the dream person or object is something other than themselves and are often hesitant to become it.
    For instance the Devil in a dream is simply your own emotions and fears given an exterior image. And also Christ in a dream is the same thing. In doing this you can step beyond the imagery of the dream into direct experience of yourself in all its variety and wonder. The Christ for instance becomes an actual experience of the highest in you.
    See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/acting-on-your-dream/#BeingPerson
    You are clearly not hesitant to identify with your dream characters, which – as you understand now – are all aspects of yourself.
    And so you merely explore all these aspects of yourself while you are still dreaming, which makes also that you do not need to explore them anymore after waking up from your dream.
    So, to answer your question, yes it is normal AND wonderful to be aware that in essence you are all things.
    See also http://dreamhawk.com/forums/index.php?topic=3937.msg9250#msg9250
    and
    http://dreamhawk.com/dream-dictionary/shapeshifter-or-shape-shifter/
    Anna :-)

    Reply

-greg 2015-08-13 15:40:08

in My dream i had just made a relationship with a girl and than it just got sinister the girl disappeared and giant rhino was trying to smash down the house for some reason there was a baby rhino in the house very cute little thing non aggressive was there, the big rhino smashed the back of the house and i started running down the street where i had heard the rhino behind me and for some reason my family was there running with me than out of no where we see a construction site so my family hops the fence rhino quickly behind us so i decide to test the rhino to see if he’s after me so i make a u turn around gravel bank for the construction the rhino smashes through the fence i quickly run to the side of the construction site where i see my uncle and he says i know that guy looking towards a construction worker and he goes to him to get a cigarette (P.S. he doesn’t smoke) and says this will destress himself and than i was confused and thought this must be a dream it’s to weird and i wake up.

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-Micaela de Leon 2015-08-31 0:36:53

Last night i dream of a specific person that is so special to me and me to him this is what happened. He surprise visit me in my house in province i ask how he found it he said he ask several people to find it because he wants to be with me then all through out that dream he was just looking at my face then in the dream my family came along asking me to get ready because we are going to my grandpa’s party and they invited the guy who surprisingly visited me and while waiting for him to get his things i suddenly woke up and hoping that its true when its not.

What does this dream means? I wasnt even thinking about him at all but we are really good friends really. He went to abroad for work and no communications at all. The last time we talk he said i wanna thank you for being there for me when i am at my depression you put back the pieces together i had before. Then thats it. Please email me on what you think. Thank you.

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    -Wolfie 2015-09-04 22:09:41

    On Saturday I am going to turkey and on Thursday night I had a dream about my stepdad.my mum and my stepdad split up about a year ago.

    My dream:
    Myself,my mum,my stepdad and my brother were in the car.we were on are way to turkey or somewhere and when we got half way I asked my mum if my stepdad was coming with us to turkey and as soon as I had said that he disappeared then I woke up.I don’t know what it means I haven’t seen him in ages.

    Reply

      -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2015-09-08 11:54:30

      Dear Wolfie – The way I see your dream is that in the dream you learn that you can ask your unconscious mind a question and receive an answer in a very direct way; “no, your INNER stepdad is not coming with you to Turkey.”
      The unconscious mind – the mother of all that lives – is an area of yourself that for one reason or another you could not yet see.
      See http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/the-unconscious-2/
      and
      http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/dream-incubation/
      It will be helpful to explore what you associate with going to Turkey in your dream.
      So please read http://dreamhawk.com/dream-dictionary/abroad/ and explore what your associations are with going there and why you have decided, feel or believe that your inner stepdad is not joining with you (anymore).
      To understand the meaning of the inner stepdad in your dream, I will quote from the “inner father”:
      “Inner Father: Many people do not realise that they have an inner father equally as powerful as an external father. You have taken in millions of bit of memory, lessons learnt, life experiences along with all the feelings or problems met by loving and living with your father, and they are what makes you the person you are. This is true even if your father was never there for you – you still have all the memories of him not being there for you filed under ‘Father’. The memories and experience we gather unconsciously change us and are not lost. It is part of you and is symbolised in dreams as a person or event. Such an inner father can appear in dreams because you are still deeply influenced by what you hold within you.”
      Please continue reading at http://dreamhawk.com/dream-dictionary/father-dad/
      I feel it will be helpful to explore the difference in yourself – your feelings, the (lack of) confidence to deal with outside (new) activities, your inner power etc. – between driving in that car with and without your stepdad being present.
      It is good to continue to realise that these explorations are all about your INNER world.
      For that exploration you can use what we call Power Dreaming – http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/secrets-power-dreaming/
      Let me know if you have any further questions.
      Anna :-)

      Reply

-Jay Jay 2015-11-28 7:36:59

Ok, I don’t usually seem to have these sort of dreams but this one hit me.

I was driven to school by an unknown bus driver, she gets out the drivers seat where we seem to have a slight argument but she seems to be a student at this school as well.

I enter the school which seems to be the lunch hall of this place however, I’m surround by familiar faces, people I haven’t seen in a long time since leaving high school but one female acquaintance, a face that I clearly remember (she was quite pretty but she was really quite unless you weren’t one of her close friends) walks up to me an says ” you haven’t changed, your still the same” a little disheartened I walk away and sit by myself but she comes up behind me and sit down on the table and apologizes and we have a really decent conversation one that I’ve been lacking for a long time.

Anyways the dream ends with everyone walking out of the school hall and another dream starts.

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-April 2015-12-20 17:22:25

I had a dream last night that an ex step dad of mine was working at the same place I do. He was very abusive and the thought of being near him upsets me, but in the dream he had the same characteristics of a manager and very good friend of mine. I was upset because I knew that the awful person I was seeing did not match the great characteristics he was showing. The manager I’m talking about is like a brother to me so it was very contradictory of the evil man that used to be in my life. What do you think this means?

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-April 2015-12-20 17:23:08

I had a dream last night that an ex step dad of mine was working at the same place I do. He was very abusive and the thought of being near him upsets me, but in the dream he had the same characteristics of a manager and very good friend of mine. I was upset because I knew that the awful person I was seeing did not match the great characteristics he was showing. The manager I’m talking about is like a brother to me so it was very contradictory of the evil man that used to be in my life. What do you think this means? Thanks!

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-Monya 2017-07-13 13:16:54

I had a dream last night that I worked with a man named Tony and we ended up in a relationship.

In my waking life I do not have a job as I am an artist/author and I am happily married to a man named Harold. I don’t associate with anyone in my waking life with the name Tony.

when I researched the meaning of dreaming of a name I came across your web page and found your name is Tony – coincidence?

I can’t seem to find on any website I frequently visit for dream analysis about dreaming of a name of a person you don’t know. Can you help me with this?]

Thank you for your help. it is greatly appreciated.

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    -Tony Crisp 2017-07-14 11:25:45

    Hi – It would help you to understand your dreams, if you would read – http://dreamhawk.com/news/summing-up/ and also http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/features-found-on-site/ which has so much information in.

    Nothing can replace your own ability to understand your dream. With a little effort you can do this by practising what is described in – http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/acting-on-your-dream/#BeingPerson or http://dreamhawk.com/dream-dictionary/getting-at-your-dreams-meaning/

    Tony

    Monya – Well dear artist and writer, I started the same way, except my art was with words. But at first I couldn’t even write anything with punctuation marks – I guess I was dumb or a poor scholar. So just keep going, because dreams are the Greatest University.

    Coincidence – well I was commissioned to write a book about it. See http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/coincidences/

    Dreams have a much larger reference source than our brain. We all live by an immense ocean in dreams. It is not a water filled ocean, though our dreams often use it to depict the massive ocean of consciousness or mind – the vastness of we are usually unaware of. We are all like islands in a great ocean. Where the ocean meets the shore of our island is the limit of our senses and so we feel we are isolated and alone. But under the surface of the ocean – our unconscious – the land slips away into the depths and connects with all the other islands. So in fact we are not alone, but are unconscious of our connection with all life.

    So maybe your dream did form a link with the name. The man Tony represents your ability to join your personal talents with your wider awareness. This huge mind is actually you too, but we are usually unaware of it. See http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/using-your-intuition-1/

    Reply

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