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Dream Counsellor

Introduction

Dream Counselor is a massive and easily accessible resource for understanding your dreams and yourself. It is far more useful than a dream dictionary because it can draw out of you what your dream means, rather than giving ready made answers.

It does need you to partake in the action by writing down your responses, feelings and thoughts when you consider the questions. Such responses will build into wonderful and helpful information that will help you find a completely new way of dealing with life.

If you are not happy with typing down what you feel and realise in response to the questions asked, you can always use Voice Recognition. It is now a part of the tools offered in the latest operating systems such as Vista and Windows 7. You can simple speak your thoughts and it is immediately typed for you.

 

CONTENTS

Easy ways

Being the Dream

Man In Your Dreams

Father Dad

Baby in my Dream

The Ex

Hints about how to approach new dream images

Baby in my dream

The Counselor

Horse in My Dream

The House in My Dream

Secrets of Transformation

Exploring your dream symbols

Examples

Identity and Who You Really Are

 Easy ways

 

Key Words

The most immediate way to gain insight into your dream is to take the keywords and fill in the gaps.

To illustrate this we can use the following dream:

I meet an acquaintance who tells me she is sick. I suggest ways that might help her. As I speak I become aware that others are listening and coming nearer. I apologise and say that I appear to be preaching, but they say, ‘Please go on we want to listen.’ As I continue I find that a rostrum has formed and lifted me two steps higher.

To use the technique of ‘keywords’ on this dream you would need to write down the most important words in the dream. Doing this you might arrive at the words – meet – acquaintance – sick – help – speak – listening – apologise – preaching – rostrum.

For the next step you ask yourself what you have recently met with in yourself or in life? It is something you are acquainted with, and that has to do with not feeling well, whole or satisfied with your life. So you would ask yourself what you are acquainted with to do with not feeling at your best?

The word ‘help’ suggests you have information that will be useful. What is it?

You apologise for yourself, suggesting degrading what you know. How are you doing that in your life?

Preaching comes next. Have you been giving advice? If so, what is it, and is it relevant to you too?

And lastly, can you listen to your own advice given from a rostrum – higher level of viewpoint?

Having arrived at some associations with the major words in the dream, you next put them together in a way that explains some of the insights or ideas you arrived at. Filling in the gaps between the words you might therefore arrive at something like this:

I have lately become aware of the feeling that I am ill at ease with myself. This connects with my lack of confidence about how I feel when talking with other people. The strange thing is that I know how to help myself with this. I was talking with a friend the other day, and the advice I gave them about something similar really applies to me. What I need to do is to stop apologising for myself and positively use what I know will help. I can see from the dream that I have a lot to share with other people, so I don’t need to feel I am preaching.

What you arrive at using this keyword method will give you an excellent overview of your dream. It will take some practice, but persist and you will get very useful results.

  Being the Dream

Tony taught me a process in which a dream could be interpreted and understood by assuming that everything, people and objects alike, in a dream represented aspects of the Self.

Sitting cross-legged on the squishy, old-fashioned sofa in the living room of my sadhu’s cave opposite Tony, I’d close my eyes and mentally return to a dream I had the previous night. He would ask me questions about the dream, which I’d answer in the first person. So if I dreamt about a tree, I would ‘become’ the tree, assume its personality and respond from its viewpoint. He’d ask ‘So what kind of tree are you? Are you big or small, old or young? What do you look like? Where are you growing? Why are you in Tiziana’s dream?’

This sounded like a silly exercise at first, but I was soon enough convinced of its validity. It was fascinating to discover a wealth of insight and emotion emerging from my responses, and understand how they related to my current situation. They also pinpointed exactly where I was in my growth process. Sometimes, the dreams would uncover unconscious fears and intuitions. Often, they also held important clues and offered solutions to my problems. It was like doing detective’s work – arduous at times, but rewarding beyond belief.

One of the most important things about actually understanding your dream rather that interpreting it is to become the dream person or object – to actually completely identify with it. 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 or any anti feelings in regard to Christianity.

So to do this the dreamer next chooses one of the characters or images in the dream to explore. The character can be themselves as they appear in the dream, or any of the other people or things. It is important to realise that it does not matter if the character is someone known or not, or whether they are young or old. The character needs to be treated as an aspect of their dream, and not as if they were the living person exterior to the dream. So do not attempt to describe them an outside person, but the dream character.

In choosing an image to work with, such as a person, a tree, cat, place, or an environment like the street in the example dream below, it must again be treated as it appears in the dream, not as it may appear in real life. One can take any image from the dream to work with. So describe yourself as the image in the dream. Remember what was said – So say “I am a little puppy and the person thinks I am adorable”. So do not say “This little dog” for that does not connect with your feelings, but distances you from the dream image.

The dreamer then stands in the role of the character or image they are using. So if they chose to be the car in the example dream below, they would close their eyes, enter into the feeling sense and imagery of the dream, and describe him or herself as the car.

Literally you can imagine yourself as that physical shape, as if your awareness has merged with the thing or person. Then let your immediate feelings and associations arise and be described.

It is important to step into the image by getting into their body if it is a person, or take on the shape if  it is an object. As I explained to a friend recently you do not even have to have a clear image of the thing or person, simply think of it as seen in your dream and then watch any thoughts or feeling that might arise – as if listening for a quiet voice or fantasy arising – but give it a minute or so.

 Example – I am a car. Joel has recently purchased me, and he is driving me, largely because he feels I will help him gain respect from other people. I am quite a large car, and have a lot of power. But even with all this energy I do not make my own decisions. I am directed by Joel’s desires and wishes, and enable him to fulfil them more readily.

As can be see, it is important to speak as if you are the chosen thing as Joel did. If it was a person Joel worked on, He should not say, “I am a woman”, or “I am the woman who turned away” but, “I am Mary. I like Joel , but I can see he isn’t really interested in me – except as a trophy in his new car.”

From this short description it can already be seen there is a suggestion the car represents Joel’s emotional and physical energy, directed by his desires and decisions.

 

Stand in the Role of Character or Object

The dreamer stands in the role of the character or image they are using. So if they chose to be a person they would close their eyes, imagine themselves as stepping into the body of the dream character and describe him or herself as the person they now are.

To do this it usually changes the way your body or feelings feel. As this is done notice any changes in how you feel as that person – or object – speak as them in the first person. Do not say, “I feel as if this person is …” but say, “I feel I am and am doing ..” As this happens watch any realisations or insights that arise and explore the person. Ask question of this dream character until you feel you have realised what is is of you that is being revealed.

I know it is difficult for some people to say ‘I’ instead of talking as if the dream character is someone else. But if you start claiming the dream image as your own in this way by saying such things as, “I am a tree” you will quickly realise you are talking about yourself.

Here is an example. The dream was of a railway station that was an old castle keep/tower. In using the magic word I, this is what he described himself as. “I am an old castle keep. I used to be for defense and repelling people, but now I can let people in and out easily.” The dreamer realised this was a really excellent insight into his character and the change taking place in him.

 

What is the main action in the dream?

There is often an overall activity such as walking, looking, worrying, building something, or trying to escape. Define what the action or theme is and give it a name, such as those listed or something like ‘waiting’ – ’searching’ – ‘following’.

To understand what your definition means, activities such as walking or building a house represent just what they show – going somewhere and building something new, or repairing something in your life. Walking can simply represent taking a direction in life or going somewhere, and building can be seen as creating something new or developing what already exists in your life. When you have defined the action, look for further information in the entries in the on-site Dream Dictionary, such as swimming, sitting, climbing, or working. Having considered the general meaning of whatever your dream action is, consider if it is expressive of something you are doing in waking life, and what the dream plot and characters comment on this.

A simple example of this is as follows:

Dreamt I was involved in having a prostitute work for me. Terry.

On looking at my dream and wondering why the prostitute was working for me it was obviously to do with love and sex. What it showed me was that I always try to use love and sex for personal gain. It always has to be on my terms instead of loving a person for their own sake.

What is your Role or Theme in the dream?

Are you a friend, lover, soldier, dictator, watcher or participant in the dream? Consider this in relationship with your everyday life, especially in connection with how the dream presents it.

The different roles or themes you play in your dreams, such as actor, lawyer, soldier or cook, usually represent the different abilities, weaknesses or interests you have. We all have different roles in everyday life. So a woman can be cook, lover, mother, counsellor, businesswoman, accountant, etc. A man can be a worker, father, a gardener, a handyman or builder, a chauffeur, artist, and so on. What is important is to see if you can get at is why the dream is showing you in that role and how it is relevant to your life at the moment. Therefore define what skills the role has, and see what the dream is commenting on them in regard to yourself. Where possible, look for the entry on the role in.

Other characters in your dream will also suggest other roles that are worth defining in relationship with yourself. Using the approach suggested in Be a different character can help define these roles. Below is an example:

 Example: Feeling tired – exhausted – just lying drained of energy. I am conscious of people talking, saying I was ill. I thought I was just tired. Then asked what the matter was. I was told it was my heart, ‘dry and hard like a boiled egg’ they said. Found I couldn’t talk. Tried to write, wanted A. to know that I loved him, but the pen kept drying up. Finger and feet began to get cold. An icy coldness slowly spread all over my body. A liquid warmth was then all around me. I thought I was hemorrhaging. A needle was stuck in my left arm and my chest was being cut open – it didn’t hurt. There was a lot of activity. They said I had gone. I was trying desperately to let them know I was still there. Then I was in a bag and sliding off a table. The bag was tied above my head. Then from the confined darkness I was free. There was a brilliant light all around. I could still see the sack with a body still in it far behind me. I was incredibly happy and full of energy. Trish L.

Well, what do you make of the dream? What is suggested by Trish’s hard-boiled heart? What does it imply that Trish is ‘gone’ but I’m still there?

There are several themes here that are worth noting. The first is the theme of tiredness. Then there is the theme surrounding her heart and the inability to express her feelings. Perhaps we can contain those two by saying it is about ‘emotional dryness’ or coldness. Then there is the theme of death/life, neatly packaged together. And something that we might miss is that overall an enormous change is going on. Trish changes from feeling exhausted and dying, to being ‘incredibly happy and full of energy’.

This gentle relationship with your dream is so important, let’s look at another dream just for practice. It is a dream told to me while I was the dream therapist with London Broadcasting Company.

I grew up in Barbados and lived with my mother in a shack. While I was there I started having a dream that I have had occasionally ever since. In the dream I was getting married and was at home dressing for the marriage, looking in a brown, peeling old mirror. The dream always ends here. Pam.

This dream is not quite as obvious as the previous one. I use it because it will help you see how dreams use certain means to depict a theme or attitude. Don’t get confused by details. Ask yourself what Pam is doing, what are the overall actions or situations?

Well, Pam is thinking/feeling things about marriage. So that is one of the themes. When Pam told me the dream I asked her if she had ever got married. She said no. So that is a further clue.

Sometimes it is helpful to consider how the word ‘I’ is used. For instance Pam says ‘I was getting married’. The ‘I’ word is used to denote something we connect with strongly. If I take some examples from other dreams, we have, ‘I could hardly breathe’ – ‘I was in a room with my brother’ – ‘I was really terrified’.

What Pam says apart from the marriage is, ‘I was …… looking in a brown peeling old mirror.’

What might be missed here can be grasped if you think of the dream as a piece of drama, like a television film. What Pam is enacting is looking at herself with thoughts of marriage. What sort of image does she have of herself? It is of a country girl who can only afford a peeling brown old mirror. So the theme here is self-image. It is about how Pam may be seeing or judging herself.

Looking at them in this way, take some time with your own dreams. Even this simple step can be very revealing, especially when used with a series of your dreams. Often great insights arise from this alone.

For further information about exploring your dreams, see:

Dreams – Practical Techniques to explore their meaning

Dreams – The best is a group using Peer Dreamwork

Man In Your Dreams

The man you dreamt of last night, more than likely represents the male you have the most important emotional bond with, or a male you either associates with love or else a man you would like to be a partner.

I Don’t Wish to See That!

Sometimes dreams about the man in your life may be attempting to express something you are trying not to see. Sarah repeatedly dreamt that her boy friend, Ron, had died, and she was attending his funeral. The dreams disturbed her and she wondered if they might be a prediction. Then she met another man whom she liked, and realised she had been trying to get away from Ron for ages, but didn’t know how to do it.

In fact many women have dreams or fantasies about their partner dying, sometimes out of worry, but frequently because it offers an easy way out of feeling trapped. In this way they are secretly hoping that no effort of will and confrontation will be demanded of them.

Of course an older woman dreaming her man is dead or dying will probably have a very different underlying cause for the dream. This may straightforwardly be an anxiety dream about their man dying – men die before women on average. The dream may be a way of looking at this and exploring or dealing with feelings in connection with the possibility that your partner’s life will end before yours.

Wider View

Ninety nine percent of the time, dreams are not prophesying what is going to happen to the man in your life. What they do pictorialise or dramatise is what you are feeling or fearing about him. A number of women have told me they frequently dream their man leaves them for another woman. I haven’t observed those particular men leaving yet, or even being unfaithful. What is obvious though is that the women who have these dreams experience a lot of unnecessary anxiety about being left. Therefore they dream about it, partly because that is what they are feeling, and partly as a safety valve for unexpressed emotions.

But many women, when you think about 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. See  Inner World

Father Dad

General positive: Your father is often the authority figure in your early life, and may represent this influence or power in you as an adult.  Your dream father is a link with the patterns of survival behaviour passed on for generations. It was the attitudes of how to cope with social activity or work – the external world. But he is part of your creation.

He therefore also depicts the ability to be productive in the external workaday world. Depending upon what level of relationship you have developed with him, your dream father is the power of creative life in you, the power to do, to create, to transform; the power in you to grow and unfold your potential. It has to be remembered that the dream father is not an image of your external father, but of what you carry of him inside you; what you have managed to develop of a working relationship with the power he represents. So you may, because of difficulties with your external father, be in conflict with your internal father, and so be lacking your full power to transform and create. See Integrating Parent of ExPower DreamingFamily.

The dream father may depict family or social conventions along with physical strength and protectiveness; the will to be and to do, and so your outgoing energies. As such he represent your confidence as you go out the door of your home into the arena of public life. A poor relationship with your external or internal father leaves you somewhat crippled in that area. But by working with your dreams on your relationship with your internal father this can be changed. See: Using Symbols to Change Life Problemsworking with dreams.

General negative: Introverted aggression; dominance by fear of other people’s authority; uncaring sexual drive; feelings of not being loved, inability to be creative in the world, in your outer activity; inability to relate well to men. See: archetype of the fatherman.

If there are feelings of abandonment then it can feel very emotional. Please see abandoned

Either represents the feelings you have about your father, or the characteristics in your nature that have arisen from this relationship; or can represent an authority figure. Can also stand for a teacher, or person by whom you are much influenced. Or else your own positive, protective qualities. How you relate to the ‘doer’ in you; physical strength and protectiveness; the will to be.

Example: Began to go into the back pain again. Words came about carrying feelings about on my back all these years. Get of my back. It’s my father. I wanted my father to be perfect like God. I wanted a strong, perfect father, not a human being.

Then I saw how I was trying to be the perfect father with my own children, instead of the human me. “It’s too much of a bloody burden being a perfect father.” I could see how this idea of drive to be the perfect father has directed a lot of my relationship with my children. In the early days I hated them at times because they showed me so often how human I was. Recently I still planned things out of that desire instead of letting what I want. Although lately there has been a swing to the human me. Yesterday I took them for a walk instead of a sauna. I do want to take them to a sauna some time, but yesterday I did not have enough cash, and to go would have been out of the perfect drive. Instead we went for a walk.

Hurting, burying or killing parent: In the example below Audrey’s height shows her as a child. She is releasing anger about the attitudes and situations her father forced ‘down her throat’.

To be free of the introverted restraints and ready made values gathered from our parents, at some time in our growth we may kill or bury them in our dreams. Although some people are shocked by such dreams, they are healthy signs of emerging independence. Old myths of killing the chief so the tribe can have a new leader, depict this process. When father or mother is ‘dead’ in our dream, we can inherit all the power gained from whatever was positive in the relationship.

Seeing parent drunk, incapable or foolish: Another means of gaining independence from internalised values, or stultifying drives to ‘honour’ or admire father or mother.

Dead parent in dream: Either the beginning of independence from parent; repression of the emotions they engendered in us; our emotions regarding our parent’s death; feelings about death. See: dead people.

Example: Dreamt that while talking with my wife I remembered that my son and I had murdered someone years before, and buried the body under a great slab of cement. After the murder the guilt – or rather the fear of being found out – was awful, but as each period of time passed, we gradually managed to lose memory of what we had done. But now I had remembered and felt the anguish of the guilt and fear of discovery. C.R.

When exploring his dream, he says: “I was led to a direct feeling link with my mother as the dead body. I saw, or felt, that when I cut off from her at 5 and attempted independence of my need for her, because of the pain she brought about in me, I had killed her as an inward figure in my life, and buried my feelings of need for her. The cement represented the energy I had used, the decisiveness, to bury her, to get her out on my life. I went on to recognise that killing and burying my mother, or my relationship with my mother, in that way was not in my own best interests. It was really an expression of my own lack of love and awareness of my best survival direction. So imagined I took the bone’s and carefully and reverently buried them, along with my father.”

Example: ‘My father was giving me and another woman some medicine. Something was being forced on us. I started to hit and punch him in the genitals and when he was facing the other way, in the backside. I seemed to be just the right height to do this and I had a very angry feeling that I wanted to hurt him as he had hurt me.’ Audrey V.

Sometimes a dream about our family is a literal statement in symbols, of what we sense is happening in the family.

Example: I was on a train with my family – wife, and two daughters. The train was derailed but nobody was hurt and we got off the train. I was walking in a field near the train. I thought my wife and daughters had got back on the train. Then suddenly another train smashed into the rear of the derailed train making it concertina into a heap. I wasn’t sure if my family were still on the train.’

Roger associated the theme of derailing with a change in direction – the change that was coming about through his children becoming independent. Some months later his wife and daughters left him. Divorce followed.

Example: The movements gradually led to feelings. These expressed a living connection existing between my ancestors and myself. This surprised me because I had years ago gone through the realisations of what I carried from my father and his fathers – the subjugation by church and state. But this was different. It was not that I was still carrying the attitudes and fears, rather that because I dared to step out of dependence and subjugation by authorities, deeper levels of influence of a transpersonal nature were being called out of my body. I experienced the sense of our family having lived for generations under fear – fear of death – fear of what people would do to us if we didn’t conform. My breaking away from such conformity was the activity that was squeezing it out of my body. It felt like changes had occurred in my body to adapt to that way of life.

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 bits 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.

The inner father can also signify what has been received via genes passed on or ancestral influences. See ancestorsparent integration

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

Useful questions and hints:

How is my father portrayed in the dream – dominating – caring – distant?

What does this say about the ‘father’ influences I carry inside me?

Does my dream show what impact on my present life my father has?

You can go back into the dream and become your father, and have a conversation with him.

See Life’s Little Secrets - Being the Person or Thing - Techniques for Exploring your Dreams – Processing Dreams

The Ex

Ex’s play an enormous part in many people’s dreams. The reason is that dreams about ex’s are very tricky for several reasons. To start with most people are often totally unaware of the experience they take in and how it interacts with them when we love or interact with someone. In other words because we memorise the feelings and responses we felt; and because we learn through our experiences, we are changed by them. The memories and the learning are part of you and is symbolised in dreams as a person or event. 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 someone and they are what makes you the person you are. Your dreams tend to put all that in the image of the past person when you are dealing with the influences left in you from the relationship.

A very beautiful and deep dream (Love was written in blood) can be seen at least in two ways. The usual one is to see it as about a physical partner that is there for you to find. Another more likely view is to see it as the you that you lost without warning – the being that will make you whole and let you know what real love is. But love is learnt and becomes habits at the early experiences – as a baby – of being loved, abandoned, left of abused. All those are very real ways leading you to painful emotions in the present relationship.

Traditions from the past and our own dreams if explored, show that we inhabit a body which is polarised as one expression of gender – male or female. But the ‘we’ that experiences life in a body is a whole being, female and male. Being in a body leads us to long for wholeness which we feel we do not have, and so long for a partner of the opposite sex to feel whole. But of course it is only an illusion of wholeness and has to be sought again and again by having sex. But that is natures or the instinctive way to procreation. See Archetype of the Animus and Archetype of the Anima

This search for wholeness in many cases. Sets up a bloody conflict between the sense of being in a body and the longing for the real love of wholeness. Look around you at the bloody mess that comes for such deep longing for a partner –  amount of ex’s you see, even in those who have ‘everything’.

One of the great and often self-defeating identifications is that with our body. If we accept that dreams portray in images our conception of self, then dreams suggest that our identity largely depends upon having a body, its gender, health, quality, skin colour, the social position we are born into, and our relationship with others. In fact, we know that if a person loses their legs, becomes paralysed, loses childbearing ability, becomes blind or is made redundant, they face an identity crisis. Yet despite all of that they still exist as a person, and if we realise that early we can avoid all the pain and distress caused by a complete identification with our body and our ex’s.

Even an absent parent is a huge figure in our inner life. In dreams we meet them again and again in ex’s, in lovers lost or in the figure of parents. For we are not dreaming about them but the memories, hurts, lessons and experiences stored within us. Everyone we have known are in fact figures of our inner world. To become whole, to love ourselves we must meet, acknowledge and integrate the people we carry within us.

Example: I am not pregnant, but dreamt I was at my ex’s place, with whom I spent a night together 3 months ago (1.5 yrs after our breakup), and he’s cold/avoiding me ever since (claiming he’s seeing someone). In the dream, I was not pregnant with him, and was convinced I was about to deliver around that day.

Example:  It started from a month ago, things started to change. Not so bad, but it’s just only the dream that he has been having lately. He has been having the same dream this past a month! He talks in his sleep. He says his EX’s name over and over again, and then some words too. I love him to death, and he loves me too! I have no other problem with him. Oh well, few months ago, we had few, but we got through it.

 

The Big One

Many dreams of the man we struggle with or dream of love with, are actually either a way we release the tension of our enormous desire for love – or are actually developing a relationship with the most important man in our life – our real soul mate. I am talking about your real other half, the man you are, under the influence of having a female body. See Women’s creative power

But I suppose one of the most striking things I experienced in recent years is that a dream image is just a ‘front’ for massive data banks of experience and information. For instance, supposing we liken your memory to a huge filing system – rooms of it. Within those rooms there is a whole section marked ‘MAN’. Within that section of ‘MAN’ are countless folders with experience and information in about particular men in your life what you have learn or experienced – from father onwards.

Apart from that there is a big file or system of files dealing with what you inherited culturally about MAN, and also what you have absorbed from mother and other women. Then there is the media and books. There is so much. What particular aspect of all this a dream is expressing depends on how the dream presents, clothes, acts, speaks and relates as the man. So the dream image is a communication between your waking awareness and those massive files of information, and dealing with a particular aspect of your life and development. There is a whole book here somewhere. As for the female male, and the male female, this is one of those lifetime areas of growth we each face and achieve in lesser or greater degrees. Fundamentally we are without a particular gender, but in connection with our body we often have very marked female or male characteristics and responses to life. However, as we move through the major problems we are wrestling with we start meeting our other half and finding symbols of blending. Eventually the male and female are one in us, though we can easily continue to live as a male or female. A way of cutting through to direct understanding is to use Being the Person or Thing

If it is a man’s dream it is an aspect of your own personality expressing in your dreams. See Characters and People in Dreams

Dreams are ways in which the feeling urges which unconsciously direct so many of our decisions express themselves, are gratified, or are explored. Therefore the male, who appears almost as frequently in a woman’s dreams as her first love, is the man she is fantasying a romance with. For instance, Christine’s deepest impulse was to be wholly in a relationship with her husband Andrew. Difficulties he experienced in regard to sex frequently led him to withdraw his warmth, leaving Christine uncertain about where their life together was going. While alone visiting her family abroad, she met David, her own age, an old friend of the family, and separated from his wife. As Christine was depending on friends and relatives instead of hotels, David offered his own place.

Christine turned it down, but she dreamt she was secretly meeting David. The meetings were very pleasant, except that Christine constantly had the ‘looking over her shoulder’ feeling.

From the dream Christine realised that she was at least considering the idea of looking for another partner. There was still too much good in her relationship with Andrew, however, for her to sever connections with him and be wholehearted about another man. This is why the meetings in the dream were ‘secret’. In that situation though, there could be no real pleasure for her either with Andrew or another man. The dream was therefore a way in which she experimented with directions, and her reactions to them, in a safe way. It is like being able to do something quite different in life than you are doing, then wake up and find you are safely back with no changes. You are then left with the possibility of changing direction, or maintaining the present one.

A Dreamer’s Comment

As a 50-yr-old woman dreamer, I want to add that these men of ours may be more numerous and more varied in person than, perhaps, the men in a man’s dream. Yes, over time, one of the men might dominate, but I don’t believe he is necessarily the most important. The stranger may be absolutely as vital to our female Life as the “husband.”

See Archetype of the AnimusSurviving Love and RelationshipsLearning to LoveLoveTeenage Girl’s Love DreamsArchetype of the Lovercou

  Counsellor


Below are hints about how to approach new images.

 Abandoned

Useful questions: 

Are you facing feelings of dependence in this dream? Or is your dream showing a fear of being left or losing someone, perhaps arising from an actual experience of loss in the past? It is worthwhile to take time to think about these questions because they are fundamental to how you relate to others. Enormous dependence is normal as a baby, and if this is disturbing you still it can lead to feelings of being abandoned.

Did your parents die or abandon you even in a minor way such as leaving you in hospital?  It is important to explore such powerful feelings of helplessness, anxiety or sense of abandonment, as then can be left over undealt feelings and responses from childhood. So ask yourself what events or changes in the present are producing such feelings in your present dream.

The following example describes such feelings and their effect.

Example: I was in a very loving relationship in which I had developed powerful emotional links with D. We communicated many times each day while apart at work, etc. But one day there was no communication. I felt tremendous anxiety and emotional pain and shock, really frightened that she had dropped me. In fact she hadn’t, but my fears were very real and difficult to deal with. It was a real shock. Peter.

Peter realised that the tremendous shock was due to his deeply felt fear that his mother/lover could desert him at any time. That fear had arisen from actual experience of abandonment. The change in D’s behaviour triggering his feelings.

Can you see signs in this dream of how others, particularly your parents, felt about you as a child? If so, have the feelings engendered become habitual? It may not be true that we were not wanted, but our feelings might be saying it was. A sense of abandonment powerfully influences our relationships as an adult, and can lead to feelings of being unloved in the midst of what is really a happy and caring relationship; sometimes carries an element of self pity. So search your feeling to see what effects your parents attitudes, actions and words had on you, and note down what you realise.

Does this feeling of abandonment influence the way you feel in a relationship? Can you write in the journal what it does in your relationships. The following dream illustrates this.

Example: ‘My Mother asked me to go and buy some butter for her. A chain on my left leg prevented me from going very far. I look down the road and see my Mum, Dad and my four brothers in the back of a car. I wave and call and they drive right past me, going over the chain I am wearing on my leg.’ Lorraine. LBC.

Lorraine’s dream illustrates not only her feelings of being left out of or abandoned by her family, but also the chain on her leg shows her not fully independent. We often feel ‘abandoned’ while we are trying to become more independent.

Does you feeling of abandonment link with any major life changes such as leaving home, or travelling and living in another country, the death of someone close, loss of job or being rejected? Such experiences can leave you feeling devastated or challenged. So look carefully at hat you feel and where the feeling of abandonment arises from? It might not be from the loss or change, but from fear about who you are and loss of your identity – and identity based on the past situation. See: alone; functions of dreams; hero/ine.

Is the feeling in the dream one you have often? If so can you define the feeling and put it into words? Ask yourself why it occurs so often, if it comes from particular triggers, and if you can trace it back to a particular past event.

Example: A woman in her fifties told me that since early childhood until her forties she had experienced a recurring dream that was very disturbing. In the dream she was walking past railings in the town she lived in as a child. She always woke in dread and perspiration from this dream. During her forties she had the dream while her sister was visiting and told her the dream. The response was, “Oh, that’s simple. Don’t you remember that when you were about four we were walking past those railings and we were set on by a group of boys. Then I said to them, ‘Don’t hurt us our mother’s dead!’ They left us alone, but you should have seen the look on your face.”

It seems likely the event had confronted her with the possibility of her mother dying, which at that age she may never have realised before. From that time on the dream never recurred.

What or who have I abandoned or been abandoned by? Anything you can clarify about this leads to greater understanding and ease.

If you look backwards through your life, can you find previous examples of it, and perhaps when the feeling started? In other words imagine yourself going back along a timeline till you find other times you felt this way until you get to the first time.

Example: One evening while lying in bed with my wife I felt she was so repulsive I didn’t want to get near her. It was so strong I wondered how, considering that I often hug women less attractive than my wife, how I felt this way now. I started going back in memory to see if I could find previous occurrences of it and quickly arrived at what I knew was the beginning of the problem. My mother had threatened to put me in an orphanage to punish me for being late for school. This wasn’t an idle threat as I had a very traumatic experience of being left in a hospital with no sense of being taken home. So I rejected her by feeling what a repulsive old cow she was, and told her so. This gave me the strength to become independent from her emotionally. It was exactly what I was doing with my wife.

Sometimes the effects of abandonment can be so great that the cause can remain hidden, and it is only met as feelings of enormous panic, emotional pain or the desire to protect or keep hold of a person. Do you feel great anger, or that the person who you are closely connected with is hateful? Or do you feel as if you are trying to placate someone?

If you dream of abandoning someone else, does the dream express any signs of hidden anger, or that you are abandoning the care or growth of some part of your personality? If so can you clearly say what your feelings or thoughts are? See: Alone.

When you dream of being abandoned in the sense of freely allowing feelings or actions, it can represent a dropping of the moral code, finding a new freedom, releasing pent-up feelings.  Can you note any of these feelings or attitudes in you?

Does an abandoned building or project appear in your dream? Have you left behind, or are outgrowing something that you were involved in and had life for you in the past, but is now either left behind, or that you have withdrawn energy or enthusiasm from, or perhaps given up on? See if you can define what the building or project depicts in your experience. If you can define it, it marks your direction of growth.

Do you dream of being abandoned by a friend or lover? Do you feel anxious about losing a friend or the love of someone? If you can see any signs of this in what you feel, define exactly what that friend gave you – such as support, warmth, criticism, encouragement – and see if you are feeling its loss. Such feelings might point to either a dependent relationship or the trauma of a childhood loss. See if you can find out which it is.

But if that does not apply, do you feel anxiety about losing a friend; or that someone’s death or absence leaves a empty place in you?

An aspect of isolation, or being left, is that it nearly always offers opportunities to meet ones fears and learn greater independence. Difficulties surrounding this are often linked with what we frequently call love, but might, for greater clarity, be called dependence. For instance, if a partner leaves us and we experience great pain, much of that pain and anxiety comes about because we have depended upon our partner to supply, or help supply such needs as money, a place to live, social standing, sexual satisfaction, a sense of being wanted, companionship and support in crises. So can you recognise any of these as factors in you or in your dream?

Summing up. From the answers you have given to the questions see if you can recognise where you relationship with abandonment arises form, or is emerging, in your life. What do you feel about it? Is it to do with an event  in your life,  someone you  lost  or a betrayal?

When you can connect the dream with your everyday experience, consider what the dream is depicting in its drama. Whatever you have discovered from looking at your dream, try to use the insights in your everyday life. Build them into the way you feel and think, and watch yourself grow.

The point of transformation. In every dream and in every life situation there is a way through to a different life. See Secrets of Transformation 

  Baby in my dream 

Useful questions: 

Your dream baby is very special to you. It doesn’t matter that perhaps the baby in your dream is the child of another woman, it is still the baby of your dream. Like any baby, it is something new and vulnerable that has come to life – come to your life. The important questions are:

What is it that is new and growing in your love, in your work, or in yourself? Or perhaps it is about vulnerability, because anything new and dependent is vulnerable. Therefore the answers you give to the following questions are important in helping you discover the truth about your dream baby. So give some thought to what is new or vulnerable in your life and write down what you discover. It might be a new venture, a relationship, or it might even be a business, so take a while to answer.

Are you having anxious or strange dreams about your baby? If you are pregnant or hoping for a baby at the time of the dream, your dream baby may be reflecting your hopes, fears or intuitions about pregnancy. Many pregnant women have very distorted or weird dreams while pregnant. So do not feel that such dreams are predictions. They are often ways of releasing anxiety or of expressing hopes regarding your unborn child. See: Pregnancy and Dreams.

So are these dreams about my fears? If you can admit these are your fears then you can magically transform them into your strength and creativity. So write down what your fears are and what you really want your baby to be.

How would you describe the condition or situation of the baby? The baby in your dream might be hungry or ill. It might be wonderfully advanced and already able to speak. Whatever the condition, this is a description of what is happening with the newly emerging or vulnerable part of you. Therefore try to put into words what you see or feel the condition of the baby is.

As an example of this, here is a fragment from a man’s dream: ‘I am responsible for bringing up a baby boy. I feel very happy about it and feel committed to it.’ So in this case the condition of the baby is that of being loved and cared for.

What are your feelings or thoughts about the baby as it appears in the dream? What you feel and think about the baby gives an indication of how you are relating to the new or vulnerable part of yourself, or what worries you are discharging. Clarify them to recognise what may be helping or hindering this new experience in your life.

Example: I had a dream that I had a child and had to cancel a test because I had to take care of the baby. I was breast feeding the baby, because it is healthier to breast feed than to give formula from a bottle. The person that I had been seeing wanted to know what I thought I was doing. The question was in an accusatory manner, like I had no business breast feeding my own baby. Then I left the baby with my friends and left. When I came back, they were feeding the baby Tabasco sauce because they ran out of milk. This shocked me because I thought my friends were more responsible than that.

So there are two issues here. The first is the struggle and strength to oppose what is felt to be right in the face of other people’s opinions. The second is that other people can injure your vulnerable and growing self if you let them take over your decisions. In either case it is clear that you have the intuitive knowledge to know what is the best way to nurture your baby.

Is your dream baby a promise or dream come true? Have circumstances in life not allowed you to be or do what is a longed for thing or activity? So ask yourself if the dream expresses any new part of you that has now been allowed time and opportunity to be ‘born’ or coming to life?

Is the dream baby my own child? If we are parents we often dream about our own children. Occasionally such dreams express concerns we have about our own child. We have noticed something ‘out of the corner of our eye’, and the dream puts this into focus. But often such dreams use the child to illustrate a developing part of you. This is because your actual child has characteristics unique to itself. They may be adventurous, playful, thoughtful or highly verbal. To understand your dream you need to define how you see and feel about your child.

For instance a woman dreamt she was sitting on a window sill and was frightened of falling. So much so she couldn’t move. Then she reached out and took her small son’s hand and climbed into the building away from danger. In describing how she felt about her son, she said he was courageous and confident. So her dream was showing how, by reaching out for her own confidence and courage, however immature, she could overcome her anxiety about falling/failing. Her child calls out her inner strength to meet the situation and overcome the danger.

Therefore, is your dream baby or child expressing something you have noticed about your actual child; or does it express some aspect of your character? In either case please describe it.

Is your dream baby dead in the womb or being aborted? If you are pregnant this dream may be a reflection of your fears or concerns regarding pregnancy. There is also an aspect in that your old way of life will die, or be lost forever, with the enormous change a new baby will bring into your life.

Otherwise dreaming of abortion or of a dead baby may symbolise the death of some hope or dream you have been holding. This need not be a negative thing, as it may be time to simply let go and move on. It may also represent letting go of some aspect of your life that has been hindering you, signifying a time of change, a new direction in life.

So has a developing part of you, a relationship or a venture been aborted or not survived in some way? Can you feel any emotions about that or say how you feel about it?

Can I help the baby in any way? This is an important question to answer because your dreams often present you with opportunities to change or to grow. If the dream is dealing with an emerging part of your nature, or a new love or project, protecting and helping this new dimension of your life is important. So, for instance, if your baby needs feeding or affection, sit quietly and imagine yourself feeding the baby, or giving it affection. Do whatever you feel is needed to help it.

Does you dream show any problems about the baby being born or surviving? Or are they problems in the way, things you have to do to allow it to be? Define what the problems shown in the dream are, and in doing so see what is holding this new and vital part of you back.

Is this an intuition about a baby’s or my baby’s situation? Quite often we dream about awful events in connection with our baby or child. Because these can be incredibly disturbing it is important to understand their meaning. As a first step there are at least two types of dreams that deal with disturbing events. The first type of dream is called ‘representative’. And the following is an example of it.

I am on a country walk with my wife and small son. I look back to see my son fall down a deep hole. I rush back to see him drowning, and wonder whether I should jump down to help him. Then suddenly he is okay and with me again.

The father was incredibly worried that it showed a bad situation for his son. But as we explored it we realised that the son represented his marriage. He had a terrible row with his wife the day before, and he was frightened that it was the end of their life together. The son in this dream was the result of their marriage, what they had created together. So if the son had died it would have shown the father feeling their marriage had no hope of a future. But the dream showed the son fully recovered, showing that even when he was feeling bad, his dream showed him a different outcome. So it represented the father’s intense feelings and the possible outcome.

The other type of dream can be called direct insight or prophetic. Such dreams are usually not in any way symbolic and are highly uncommon. They do not include such things as are seen in the above dream which quickly switches from danger to ease. The following dream is an example.

One morning my wife woke and told me she had dreamt about the baby of two of our friends. The friends, a man and wife, were living about 200 miles from us. We knew the wife was pregnant, and about a week or so before the dream we had received a short letter saying their baby, a boy, had been born. We were not on the telephone at the time, so the letter was our only means of communication.

In the dream my wife saw the baby and a voice from behind her told her the child was ill. Its illness, she was given to understand, was serious, and would need to be treated with a drug taken every day of the child’s life. The reason for this illness and the drug use, she was told, was because in a past life the person now born as the baby had committed suicide using a drug.

In this dream very definite information was given that could be checked. I didn’t take the dream seriously, thinking it was some sort of personally symbolic dream. The dream was sent to the couple, and about a week later a letter from them said that the letter and dream had crystallised their already existing anxiety about the baby. It had not been feeding well and was fretful. On taking it to the doctor nothing definite could be found but special tests were made in hospital. From these it was discovered the baby was dying. It lacked an enzyme which was needed to digest calcium. To compensate it was given a drug, which it has had to take every day of its life to make up for the lacking enzyme.

The dream did not represent a situation, it described it clearly. Also it could easily be checked. So if you are uncertain, always go for the representative dream, as prophetic dreams are extremely rare.

So the questions to ask are: Is this dream making a direct statement? If so can I check it for accuracy? If it is a representative dream, ask yourself what it represents symbolically, and go through the questions above. 

Does my dream show an infant body with an adult head – or adult body with and infant head? Ask yourself what this suggests? Do you feel you have an element of you that has not developed or matured fully? If so, can you describe how it expresses in your life? See: Ages of Love.

Have you adopted a baby or given a baby for adoption? Have you taken on other person’s stance in life, one that you feel will offer the opportunity to grow?  Or is this a way of grafting another person’s ability to conceive a new life of ability to your own abilities? If you are trying to adopt a child, does the dream show the concerns or fears you feel, or is it very positive?

Is the baby a girl or boy? What do you feel is the difference between a girl baby and a boy? If you can define the difference than you can see what sort of new thing you are caring for or helping to grow.

Is my dream baby crying – and if so for what? Can you say what it is your baby is crying for? If you can define this, can you give it what it needs? Is it that it needs to feel happy and relaxed in its environment, to feel wanted and loved; does it have a sense of connection with other people? Is there something distressing you at a feeling/needing level that you are not acknowledging; a new project or aspect of self needing more care?

Has the dream baby been dropped? Are you being careless in meeting the needs of your vulnerable and growing self? Or have you mishandled an opportunity or relationship or ‘dropped’ someone or been ‘dropped’? Or is there any likelihood of an aborted baby?

Example: I turned and ran with the pram at a small boy on a tricycle who was pedaling toward me playfully. We laughingly collided. Not a bad bump, but enough to send the baby over onto the ground on its head. The baby cried but didn’t seem badly hurt. I realised it was the second time I had dropped the baby, and felt I must be more careful and responsible. We were then preparing for a storm on the ship.

It was during the past few days that my wife told me that her period was late. She thought she was pregnant. This caused an awful situation between us. I was out of work in a town that offered me no work. I suggested she had an abortion. As it turned out it was a false pregnancy. However, the damage had been done. Apparently I had dropped the baby?

These questions need to be answered with care to get to the right feelings and insight into what is happening in the important deeps of you.

Is the baby being hit? Can you see any signs suggesting you are still trying to destroy or repress the development of your own child self? This is so important a question it is worth taking time to consider. So can you see any evidence for self criticism that damages your creativity or growth? Can you recognise that as a child events, parental or social punishment or restrictions, may have held back your emerging curiosity, enthusiasm, sexuality, or love? Maybe these things were crushed. But they are still within you to resurrect, and will call out to be healed. So the hitting would be a continuation of the repression that you received in your early years. 

Am I involved in losing/not finding a baby? In what way have I lost or feeling that I have lost something to do with my spontaneous, and childlike self? Or are you the lost and abandoned baby – or feeling uncertain of your worth and love? 

Is there a neglected or forgotten baby in my dream? Many dreams about babies show a starved and neglected baby.

Is my dream about the mysterious side of parenthood? There is a wonderful side of dreams about your baby that is often completely overlooked. To quote from the researcher Elisabeth Hallett’s writings, “I stumbled across a mystery. I was working on a book about the postpartum bonding time, gathering parents’ personal stories, when I was struck by an unexpected fact. Quite a few parents emphasized that their connection with their baby had begun long before the actual birth. They told of sensing contact and communication during pregnancy–and in some of the most spine-tingling accounts, even before conception itself.” One man dreamt the following, already mentioned above:

One night I was awoken from dream that frightened me. I was in a room with my wife and we were aware of a powerful spiritual being. He said for us not to be frightened, and ask us to have sex because he wanted to be born to us. It was such an impressive dream we went ahead, and within a short time I dreamed my wife was pregnant with a boy child, a special child. When he was born he showed something of his specialness early by starting to walk at six months.

Often these dreams are a form of communication between the mother and the child she is carrying, and in such cases a special bond develops. Or the unborn child tells of his past or what it wants to do in its life. One woman told of a dream in which her unborn child told her it was to be a girl, and its name will be Tamsin!

Such dreams are easily recognised by their clear messages and feelings of knowing your baby and its connection with you.

Summing up. From the answers you have given to the questions see if you can recognise what new thing has come into, or is emerging, in your life. What do you feel vulnerable about? Is it to do with someone you love? Is it a new attitude you have to the way you express yourself? Or perhaps it is a new project you have undertaken.

When you can connect the dream with your everyday experience, consider what the dream is depicting in its drama. Is it saying the baby is healthy and strong? Does your baby need support? Is it nourished? Whatever you have discovered from looking at your dream baby, try to use the insights in your everyday life. Build them into the way you feel and think, and watch your baby grow.

The point of transformation. In every dream and in every life situation there is a way through to a different life. See Secrets of Transformation 

 

Horse 

Useful questions: 

There are great similarities between the horse and the dog. They are both domesticated animals, and so represent urges and drives you may have learned to harness or direct. The big difference is that the horse can carry us and serve us in our labours much more powerfully than a dog. 

Do you feel any pleasurable exuberance or energy in the dream? If so do you sense any feelings to do with well being and enthusiasm and that it – the horse – can ‘carry’ you through the day easily?

This wonderful energy can be felt as sexual well being or physical drive to work. Some times the tremendous feelings that can move a horse to run and jump through sheer pleasure. So it important to define what you feel and where it is taking you.

Do you feel the horse is taking you somewhere you do not want to go or are afraid of?

If you feel fear can you say what it’s about and where you feel it is taking you?

Has this got anything to do with the process of ageing and the natural process of life that can drag you sometimes unwillingly toward old age and death?

Therefore in old age the unbidden processes that move toward death may be depicted as the horse in a threatening or helpful role. That is not in itself and awful thing or something to avoid. The dream process can transform such fears into wonderful insights. See; Examples Horse and Carriage.

Is your dream horse panicking, or are you panicking riding it?

A horse is not only a dynamic power and a means of locomotion; it can carry you away like a surge or instinct. It is subject to panics like all instinctive creatures which lack higher consciousness. Therefore it is worth asking what has panicked you or the horse and talking to it – yourself. Talk to it and pat it as one would a horse to calm its natural instincts, or encourage them if necessary.

Is your horse expressing love to you, or a tremendous urge to serve and help?

Have you noticed this urge in yourself; and if so how are you dealing with it or expressing it? What do you feel an natural love for? And can you take time to think about it and write it down?

Does this dream have any links with sorcery and magic spells?

If you explore those feelings where do they lead? Obviously you may be scared of such feelings, but if you can face your fears they may lead to a very new way of living.

What colour is the horse in your dream?

The colour of the horse is very import in dreams. So see what you arrive at and write it down. For instance what would be the difference in what you felt for a black horse and white horse, or even a golden horse? Think about that before you read on.

In mythology and folklore the black ‘night horse’ can sometimes be link with death. The white horse is often seen as a herald of success or enlightenment.

Are there any feelings of love or sexual feelings between you and the horse?

In a woman’s dream do you feel a male strength from your connection with the horse? Or in a man’s dream do you feel any support and love as from a loving woman?

Is your horse wearing blinkers? Can you see that you are shutting out seeing things; either to not allow yourself to see what is happening around you; through anxiety about life, or to concentrate your attention?

Are you controlling the horse through fear of it? Do you feel that you are frightened of your urges running away with you? Are you trying to control, fears, feelings of love and sexuality, or your own natural drives and emotions? Is this because they are powerful enough either to give you motivation in your activities, or drag you along unwillingly?

Do you dream of a dead horse? Have you experienced a serious loss of energy or motivation which is leading to illness or depression? Or is this an old and dying set of habits and motivations or way of life that has died?

Have you fallen off your dream horse, or seen someone else fall off? Have you been relating badly to your urges and needs? This might cause you to come a tumble, especially if you are not taking care of your health, sexual or exercise needs; after all you are an animal and an animal has its needs. So have you not understood who you are as a mammal? This could result in tension, breakdown or illness.

Are you or someone else dragged along by a horse? Impetuosity of feelings; feelings dragged along by natural urges.

Horse race: The events of everyday life, and your relationship with people; everyday competition and where you rate yourself in it; what happens in the race shows how you are relating to opportunity, or how you feel about your accomplishments and being part of the ‘human race’. Perhaps this indicates your urge to gamble and its outcomes.

Horse running freely: Allowing your emotions or sexuality free reign to express naturally. Love of life.

Horse unwilling to move or carry: Your natural or instinctive feelings are against the action or direction you are trying to go.

Man on horse: This has sometimes suggested a messenger, but can also indicate a good relationship between your natural drives and your waking self – if the person rides well.

New born horse: Emerging energy or new motivations.

Old or worn out horse: State of your feelings, perhaps worn out from overwork, or it may refer to a member of the family in a similar way.

Riderless horse: Sometimes represents the death of someone, as in the following example.

What was involved in that decision?

What natural almost instinctive side of you feels like it is fighting for survival?

What sort of horse was this? I suppose I mean what was its character, considering what you said about its mythological nature. And what would be lost by its death.

 

House in My Dream

Useful questions:

There are so many things a house contains, such as an attic, kitchen, a hallway and stairs, these are listed separately, so if you can’t find them in this entry search for them elsewhere.

When you dream of a house, you are meeting a hugely important and many sided representation of yourself. It is both many faceted and multidimensional.

Each dream image holds enormous data, emotional response, and created patterns of behaviour. So in considering the house in your dream you need to remember you are in touch with a full surround databank of fantastic information about you, your past and your possibilities. You can interact with this information by exploring it in the right way. And to help with this let us look at and question some of the possibilities your dream house might hold. Let us start by asking how, in general, you would describe this house. 

For instance how old do you feel the house is – and in stating its age, does that connect in any way with your own age and time of birth? If so how? If the age differs from your own age, what period of time or your life does it coincide with and what relevance has that to you? How old the house is does not simply refer to your physical age. But also it can refer to what period of social attitudes your were born in and influenced by. 

Is it a strong house, or are there weaknesses? In other words what does the dream house suggest about those things? For instance any weakness in the house needs to be seen as difficulties you have – and of course strengths as signs of ability to cope with life. So see of you can find any associations with weaknesses or strengths.  Is the house well built or weak in some areas? If weak what areas of yourself or your body can you gather from that? 

What style of house is it? The style of the house can give clues to what you have inherited from the past, from your family and culture. The style of the house may also suggest something of your attitude to life. As you explore the house in general look for connections to any aspect or period of your life.

The style can also suggest a period of history and the attitudes and morals of it. It can also depict the particular skills or strengths you have. And you need to ask if your personality and inner life reflect those skills or lack of them? After all, some old houses have so much workmanship and quality in them.

In the dream how are you relating to the house? Are you arriving, leaving, repairing it, pulling it down, or exploring it? Whatever you are doing, or in whatever way you are relating to the house, what does that suggest about what you are doing to your body, your personality, or your way of life? For instance if leaving, are you leaving a way of life behind? If renovating, what attitudes or part of you are you changing?

Are you searching for or finding something in it? Or perhaps this is about an event, a relationship, or an influence you can feel in connection with the house. Try to define the influence or whatever you experience, and see if you can notice how that is active or influencing your current life.

Is this a house you once lived in, or does it remind you of such a house or dwelling? If so what was your way of life in that house? What happened to you there – were you going through puberty; were you in or leaving a relationship; was success or failure experienced there; was it a move to or achievement of independence? Whatever you remember or define about it, how is that relevant now and in what way is it active in your life?

What is the environment or atmosphere like in the house? Sometimes it is easier to see this looking back as you are often too immersed at the time, so take time to describe it to yourself. 

Have discovered a new area of the house, or found a door or a room you never knew existed? If so what is the new area like? What atmosphere or feelings does it arouse? What do you find, feel or discover in this new area? In what way does this reflect discovery of new attitudes, talents or aspects of you?

Example: An actual example of this is of a woman who wrote telling of a recurring dream in which she discovered a door in her house she had never seen before. Beyond it was a whole apartment she has never known or used. It was obviously an area of her life she had never lived in, but she had no idea what. A soon as she imagined entered the apartment she began to remember and feel again things that had happened in her childhood. Her mother and father had separated when she was very young, and her mother had constantly presented her father as weak and of no value. But the feelings that arose were of the love of beauty and art that her father had shared and helped unfold in her. But she had kept that part of her closed because of what her mother had said. Now it was open to her again and she could allow it to unfold further in her life.  An important point here is that the woman did this working alone on her dream, not with professional help or supervision.

Is your dream showing a falling down or destroyed house or building? Can you see that something is passing away or has passed? This can refer to a way of life or a particular personality style. For instance one may have been brought up to be very moral and rigid at one stage of ones life and then a major change happen and one becomes more mobile and adaptable. This could be depicted as a building or house that has fallen or been knocked down; ageing and the process whereby one loses some functioning or sexual attractiveness of the body in ageing.here any signs of health problems? If so ask yourself what in you is failing.

Have you discovered a room that you have forgotten or forsaken? Are you beginning too realise that you have buried or walled up parts of who you were? Sometimes great needs lead you to forsake yourself in some way, as in the example. 

Example: I landed on the flat roof of a house, and suddenly realised I was on the roof of my old home, though it didn’t resemble it at all. Standing there I could see down into a room, or an area, that had got walled off as my home was being renovated. This is an important point because my old home was a huge project that never got completely finished. As I looked into the rooms I saw many objects I knew belonged to me from the past, and I would go back to examine to see what were useful to me now.

Has a new area of you been discovered? If so what is in it? What atmosphere or feelings does it arouse? What do you find, feel or discover in this new area? In what way does this reflect discovery of new attitudes, talents or self discovery in you?

As you discover the room, what do you feel or realise? If you cannot get into the room what do you feel is stopping you? And does the room remind you of any time in your life or period of activity or relationship?

What do you feel led you to forsake the room and if you can see object there, what use to you are they now?

Sometimes the events that have led us to wall up part of our experience contain intense emotions. As in the following example:

Example: I felt a bit anxious as I went to the tower and felt I could face whatever the influence was – perhaps of ghosts. I took one of the bombs I must have been carrying and blew out a wall in the tower. I had could see a whole family who had been walled up many years previously. The scenes of their death were very moving – baby in the arms of its mother etc.

Of course dreams are often very dramatic in their portrayal of our inner feelings. Even so, it is worth while asking yourself what part of your family life has been denied so strongly?

Does the house give you an impression of great age? Is it older than you are? If so what are your impressions of it and what it contains? What is your relationship with it and are you searching for or finding something in it? Try to define the influence or whatever you experience, and see if you can notice how that is active or influencing your current life.

If this is an old house and you gain entrance to new areas, you need to ask yourself what influences from the past – perhaps the long past – are emerging in you at the moment.

A very old house, especially if it is large, can depict what could be called past dwellings, or past lives involved in or connected with your present life. In general it depicts the past from which your present life has emerged, and the influences from which it arises. If you can imagine yourself in the house you may be able to clearly experience what its influence is. (For help doing this see: Exploring Your Dream)

Does this house belong to somebody else and how are you relating to this house? Are you entering or leaving this house? Sometimes such a house can suggest your relationship with someone else. If not that then are you entering a new or different way of or situation in life? So can you connect with any of those suggestions, and if so in what way?

Is a new relationship indicated in any way, or you becoming intimate with someone?

Or are you looking for something, a new relationship or even a new experience of living?

What social status does the house suggest? Do the surroundings of the house suggest wealth, poverty or some level of social status? If so try to define it and how you relate to it now or in the past.

Are you entering the house? Are you looking for something or examining yourself – your mind and emotions? Or are you entering a new relationship and becoming intimate with someone?

Have you left the front door open?  Do you have an ‘open door’ for strangers and friends? Or is it that you are open to a new relationship, or to move in and out of a situation.

Is the back door shown in your dream? Is there any connection in the dream with family members or those you trust coming into or leaving your life?

Are attackers or intruders coming into the house? Can you feel any social pressures or exposure to criticisms? Or are there any indications of an infections of some sort?

Is your dream house burning or falling down? This suggests very big changes in attitudes. So do you feel as if your past way of life or way you life is either under threat or that you want to leave behind old standards or dependencies?

Are you involved in buying a house? This suggests you are making a decision to change, or wanting a change. Can you sense this, and can you see that it face you with making a choice? So do you have any feelings of uncertainty about deciding what to do with your life and even relationships? This might also need you to clarify what you want, and what you would like.

Cramped house: Feeling of need for personal change; feeling restricted in home environment or in present personal attitudes.

Is the front of house shown? Is your personality, the part that you deal with outsiders, or you present to the world, involve?  Also, what is happening to the front of the house, the façade? Is it being redecorated, falling or torn down, or restructured? Think about what that means and see if it expresses something you are aware of.

The point of transformation: In every dream and in every life situation there is a way through to a different life. Secrets of Transformation 

There are so many things a house contains, such as an attic, kitchen, a hallway and stairs; these are listed separately, so search for them elsewhere.

Secrets of Transformation

  1. Who we believe we are, and what we feel is real or fundamental in life, is usually a false view. We usually base our identity on what we look like, what others say we are – good or bad – our social or financial standing, and what we feel reality is. We often feel that way because we have a fixed idea of what reality is at that reality is stable. Yet at every moment the world and universe are constantly changing. Constantly we see new patterns, as with the weather. Each day is unique. Trying to summarise or define life reminds you that the universe is never the same at any given moment. Subtle changes have taken place in every shifting moment.  Even within the human realm, the dreams, urges and creative moments of individuals throughout the world have slightly shifted what we call reality.  They may be minute units of change and tenuous, but together they add up to the changing landscape and experience of our lives.  So you can never really define it, even if it is something you have experienced.  Even what you hold on to and manifest gradually fades away. So let go and approach each moment as if it offers a new opportunity. To enlarge understanding of the points here see: The Magical Dream Machine; Identity.
  1. Remember the precious moments when you knew the precious moment.
  1. We are all only a brushstroke on the canvas of Life. Stand back and admire it and see how however small your mark is, you are part of something beyond belief or even understanding. So see the bigger picture.
  1. When you have explored your dreams deeply enough, you will realise that we are all part of a huge virtual reality, a huge film, in which no matter what events are played out, nobody is hurt. However, as humans we tend to judge everything. By doing so we shut ourselves off from really participating, seeing, and understanding.  After all, there is only change, no final death, only the experience of it.
  1. In the moments of greatest awareness, this life seems to be a playground.  We are all so young, and it is silly to feel superior. We are all so tiny, and it is on the goodwill of Life itself, huge beyond imagination, that we exist.  It cares for us.  Can you imagine it?  This gas breathing, farting, sex banging, bag of water – yet Life sees we have value and potential.
  1. We have so wanted to be manipulators – in charge, in control.  We have so wanted not to feel insecure!  That desire leads to enormous insecurity.  As creators, that is the world we create.
  1. If you look around, you will see that the highest and lowest are inseparable.  The good and the bad, the light and the dark need each other and are inseparable. The most refined and the coarse run together somehow and are needed by each other in creativity.  For the highest to take on form it descends into the very fundamental, to the slime and the deeply biological and earthy. If you can see this you will experience that extraordinary moment of creation, in which everything is there together, unseparated.  We partake in that extraordinary moment of creation.  And it is only when we can love as broadly that we can be a part of it.  It is only when we can love that broadly that we can enter into it without manipulating it.  But there is a quiet presence to be drawn upon if we so seek.  That presence enters every moment.  There is no moment more significant than another.  This is the moment of creation.  This is the moment when you can recreate yourself – again and again and again.  Or perhaps you want to create yourself again, and hold onto that moment.  Or you can play with it until you have exhausted it and let it lie in the way.  Isn’t that life, when we hold on to moments, lover, beloved, the child, the lost waif, princess and the prince, business person, the world dominator – my God, the roles we can assume are extraordinary.  And it’s all okay because it is all a part of creation and creativity.  Nothing is ever lost or destroyed.
  1. In every moment there are opposing opposites. It is the energy of Life. If you get trapped in one polar opposite or another, it leaves you feeling powerless and the victim of life. But if you stand in the middle you are at the point of creation. At that point you can ask how to get out of the traps you are in; how to find release from pain; how to find what it is you REALLY want.

 

Exploring your dream symbols

To get really into your dreams, you need to be able to play a little with imagination – you know, that wonderful creative thing we have. And if you haven’t exercised your imagination recently, you ought to try.

So a staring point is to stand in the role of the character or image of the dream you are trying to extract more from.  So if it was a car you dreamed about, chose to be the car.

So to start with it helps to be sitting comfortably and undisturbed. Then you close your eyes, enter into the feeling sense and imagery of the dream, and describe the car.

Do not do that as if you were describing any old car, but exactly what is in the dream. It helps if you think of the car as if can help to imagine you know nothing about it. So what  is a car, and  what is its purpose and why do we use it?  Then you can be even more imaginative and take n the shape of the car, what it feels like, and it how it relates to the human you. So if it were a person imagine in your dream, what it would be like being in their body?

Example – I am a car. Joel has recently purchased me, and he is driving me, largely because he feels I will help him gain respect from other people. I am quite a large car, and have a lot of power. But even with all this energy I do not make my own decisions. I am directed by Joel’s desires and wishes, and enable him to fulfil them more readily.

From this short description it can already be seen there is a suggestion the car represents Joel’s emotional and physical energy, directed by his desires and decisions.

If we then explore Joel, we would get a perspective on why he is in the car – “I am seeing a woman I fancy, and hope I can attract her with my car.”

To go more fully into this approach, as you take on the role and have finished describing yourself as the object or person, now notice what you are feeling in yourself as you really. Give attention to what changes occur as you notice what is arising in your body, your feelings and imagination. This is a bit like watching a blank television screen, waiting for something to show. Watch until something relevant or promising starts to arise then observe it as it grows.

Describe what is observed until you have got to the end of your description and observations. Take your time with this.

alone Being alone in a dream expresses one’s sense of isolation, feelings of loneliness or independence, depending on dream feelings. Idioms: Go it alone; alone together; alone = all-one.

Useful questions:

Do I feel okay about being alone in the dream or in waking life?

Are any feelings or fears about independence indicated or relevant?

What is the theme and drama of the dream adding to the aloneness? See: drama.

Examples

“Last night I had a dream which shook me somewhat, and I wonder what you make of it. I am a mature 40 year – old, don’t normally dream, and am not unduly fanciful, but this dream has really shaken me. It felt like death. In the dream, my husband and I are at some sort of social club. The people there are ex-workmates of mine and I am having a wonderful time and am very popular. My husband is enjoying my enjoyment. Then he and I are travelling down a country lane in an open horse-drawn carriage. It is very dark and is in the area we used to live in. We come to a hump-backed-bridge, and as we arrive at the brow of the bridge a voice says, ‘Fair lady, come to me.’ My body is suddenly lying flat and starts to rise. I float and everything is black, warm and peaceful. Then great fear comes over me and I cry out my husband’s name over and over. I get colder and slip in and out of the blackness. Then I start to wake up. It takes a tremendous effort, as my body is very heavy. I am extremely cold and absolutely terrified, with a feeling of horror. There seems to be something evil here. I force myself to get up in the dark and go downstairs. Even with the light on I feel the presence of great evil.”

The first part of this woman’s dream and what she says of herself shows her as an outgoing person, with a happy disposition. She likes people, and they like her; she is probably good looking, and healthy. She feels herself successful at what she has worked, and has left having acquired friends. The relationship she has with her husband is also depicted as one in which pleasure can be allowed within caring independence. Her dream image of herself is therefore created out of her own confidence. Dreams frequently summarise the quality of ones life and the ‘story so far’ in their first scene.

The second scene is made up of several parts – the journey, the woman’s relationship with her husband, the force of nature symbolised by the horses and the countryside, and the unknown seen as the bridge and the voice. To understand what this reveals of the dreamer, look at the vital clues: what she has said about herself and what she felt in the dream. If you strip away images to see what attitudes or emotions are exposed, you can see the forces behind the dream plot. The most poignant statement she makes is in saying, “It felt like death.”

If we consider the central image of the dream, the hump-backed bridge, in relation to what she says about her age, the feelings of death’s approach make sense. When you approach a hump-backed bridge you climb, but at the very brow, the descent begins. Isn’t that a powerful symbol of life? In our younger years our strength, sexuality and ability to meet life with resourcefulness and independence increase, until middle age, when the decline sets in. You cross over – as this woman crosses the bridge – from one type of experience or view of life to another. The passage of time is seen here as the horses pulling her carriage inexorably towards the change.

But the dream’s beauty, its depth and drama, are in the voice, and in the discovery of how death ‘feels’. They tell us something about women’s inner lives, PLURAL. They reveal how, in her prime, a woman confronts change and the view of death in a way few men do. “Fair lady” the voice of change calls, “come to me.” And it beckons the dreamer towards a hefty mid-life crisis, asking her to exchange her sexual peak, her firm body, her fertility, for the different perspective of post-menopause.

Many women – men too of course – gain their sense of value as a person from their ‘attractiveness’. Losing whatever it is that makes them sexually desirable and socially popular – or fearing that they are losing it – will lead to a significant change in their way of life and their feelings about themselves. This is what makes the dreamer call for her husband. This is what produces the feeling of isolation and terror. A woman needs reassurance and love at this point in her life. She may behave indecisively and deflect the advances of her man through a lack of self-esteem.

Fortunately the human personality is resilient. Even though we are reared to identify ourselves with what our body looks like, what it can do, what sex it is, what age it is, and how others react to it, we CAN grow to mature independence without constant reassurance.

Some people create these nocturnal horror movies when leaving school or sitting exams. But middle age is just another phase of life, with as much potential for growth and love as any other phase – and as much room for failure. This woman fears what she imagines middle age will do to her. The dream isn’t an intuition of her future.

 Identity and Who You Really Are 

Meeting the I AM

If you say to yourself, “I am tired. I am hungry. I am depressed. I am happy,” you are describing the changing conditions of your body and your mind. But if you say – “I am” – you are describing the fundamental part of you that experiences the changes. The ‘I AM’ is there all the time isn’t it, behind all changes? But it is as slippery as an eel to catch hold of. That is why it is necessary to learn it. Instead of realising your naked ‘I AM’ you tend to see only your thoughts and emotions, your shifting body, all of which are constantly changing.

This – I AM – survives sleep. It survives the shifting world of your sensory impressions, your thoughts and emotions. It is the ever present awareness behind the experience of your life. It doesn’t change with the tides and calamities of events. This is the rock upon which it was suggested building your house, your dwelling place, your identity – while your sensory impressions, your thoughts and emotions are the shifting sands warned against. It is within the awareness of this I AM that the conviction, not belief, in eternal existence lies. It is to the meeting with the ‘I AM’ that a real sense of who and what you are can be built. When you experience your ‘I AM’ in its nakedness, you KNOW you have existed throughout eternity. It is not a question of belief, or of being told. You experience yourself as an eternal being, standing beyond all the shifting winding paths of your body, your mind and feelings.

Meeting Your Eternal Self

So what is it like to meet this conviction of eternal existence, and what is the value of it? Why have people sacrificed so much for it?

It is easy to see that while you are convinced that your real identity is your body; while you are convinced that your emotions and thoughts are your only reality, you are incredibly vulnerable to uncertainties, fears, dashed hopes, feelings of failure, the emptiness of success and painful betrayals. These can toss you around like a scrap of paper in a gale. They can be the stress that is at the root of illness. Discovering yourself as anchored beyond change is enormously healing. Yet if you close you eyes and so lose you sight temporarily you can still know you exist. If you have the misfortune to lose an arm or a leg you still exist. Or as I experienced in a devastating stroke, despite being unable to talk, walk or respond adequately, I knew my central self still existed. I knew that what had been damaged was the physical mechanism of allowing me to express physically. I knew also that if I had built my sense of myself on my body functions, I would have been in a breakdown situation.

Even in dreams, while partly lost in the swirling world of the dreams imager, you still, behind it all, know you exist. And it is that awareness of the ‘you’ behind all the shifting phenomena that is the reality.

Although the I AM is beyond thought, beyond emotion and physical sense impressions, and at first appears to be an empty void – the Cloud of Unknowing as an early Christian mystic described it – it is like a spring from which can emerge healing of body and mind, creativity, intuitive perceptions.

 magical dream machine We all dream every night, so we each have what could be called a Magical Dream Machine.

To gain a feeling of this, imagine yourself entering one of those game machine areas where youngsters can ride a motorbike, or ski down a slope. But instead of a simulation of a car, you discover a large machine that you can climb into and become completely enclosed. When you close the door, contacts link onto your body and head in the complete darkness. It is quiet as all the external sounds disappear, and you relax your hold on your body and senses. Your whole experience of yourself shifts as the external world melts away, along with your awareness of your body. That is sleep.

But now – in the darkness a light glimmers. Gradually it takes shape. The shape of a person is suggested. In the time that follows he or she evolves form, moves, and you have full sensory experience. You are totally involved, with all your emotions and sexuality responding. Changes occur and you love, fight, fear, murder or bring to life again the person, who can become an animal, a devil, God or a bodiless voice lost in a sombre countryside. Your experiences are totally real, and you move through heaven and hell, despair and joy, darkness and light. Scenes from your past can be revisited – or totally new experiences can be felt so clearly, you are enriched.

That is a dream.

Seeing Is Not Believing

If you had been in such a machine, and on coming out of the total involvement of these moving experiences, you were told you had created it all yourself – that on the black screen you had, out of your fears, habits, secret longings and passion; out of your immense store of memories; with your unbelievable range of feelings and creativity – you had given form to urges and processes in your body and made this rich world of experience, what would you feel? Would you disclaim responsibility? Would you consider it meaningless? Would you realise what amazing creativity and potential you have?

In your dreams you create such a world and such experiences. But perhaps you have not taken time to consider the wonder of your creative process in dreams. Every night you create a new drama. You conjure out of your own being the people, the creatures, the surroundings of your dream. Then you give life to what you create – not only life but purpose and drama. You are a supreme dramatist, playwright, actor and actress. You are the great Creator – in your dreams. Considering this, have you ever wondered why that enormous creativity does not flow into your waking life? You can see that some people have that creativity and are enriched by it personally and financially. Why not you?

In considering how you reply to this, remember a few well-known facts about how you encounter the so-called ‘real’ world of waking life. Firstly, when you look at an object such as an orange or apple, remember that although you have the sense of seeing what colour and texture the fruit has, in fact all you are seeing is reflected light. You never see the actual colour of the object.

Also, as far as texture is concerned, this is a mystery to you. Texture depends entirely on what you approach the fruit with. If it is an electron microscope, then the texture is one of shifting swirling atoms and subatomic particles. If you were tiny the apple would have a very different appearance than it does to you at your present size. Also, remember that you never actually know what the apple feels like or looks like directly. Your eye takes in streams of light that are translated into nervous impulses transmitted along the optic nerve. In the brain these nerve impulses are again translated into an image that enables you to have some relationship with an apparently external world. In the same way the nerve endings on your fingers transmit signals that are translated into sensation.

Similarly the television picture you watch on a screen is translated from signals the TV set is sensitive to and changes into pictures, colour and sound. The signals are not in themselves images, colour or sound. So, like the TV, the world you feel so sure you are seeing and experiencing, is one your brain has created in order to enable you to deal with survival. Even so it is a translation of ‘the world’ that has been shaped by evolution and its limited needs. You only respond to very narrow wavebands of light and sound for instance. So you do not know much of what is actually going on in the world anyway. Your eye, as a lens produces an upside down image of your surroundings, and this is ‘corrected’ to help you move around more easily.

Considering that you only experience a virtual reality of the external world created by your brain – and that is itself limited to a tiny fraction of what is actually surrounding you – you cannot take seriously your perceptions of the world or people. There are so many radiations, energies, and depth upon depth of texture in the cosmos and objects around us, that in effect we are blind and deaf.

You Are the Creator 

So it is true to say that you live in a world, in conceptions of yourself and your surroundings that are a self-created virtual reality. You could just as correctly be asked the question of whether you accept that you create all you experience in regard to the objective world, as you could of the magical dream machine.

However, we are discussing dreams, but remember that what is said could equally as well refer to your waking life.

So, your dreams are a magical place in that you have the ability in them to create a totally real world. Do you discount them? Do you see that you create your own world of experience in them? If you do, have you wondered why you may have a propensity for creating what you do. Or why, with such creative potential, you might still lack self-confidence? Just as you create your surroundings in dreams, you also create the psychological and sensory world you live in. Understanding your dreams can help you to clarify why you at times create what does not satisfy you, and how to generate a whole new world of experience. You can take charge of your creativity and ride with it instead of being at its mercy. Such power, after all, can as easily produce misery and ill health as pleasure and ability – unless you learn to direct it. Such creativity can lead you into hell, or create a heaven.

 

 

 

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