Dreams use air in two ways. The first depicts the sort of feelings we have if we have ever struggled to breathe through illness or danger. So the lack of air could show a struggle you are having to survive in the present situation.

Air is the tangible opposite to physical life. In most dreams any mention of air is in regard to flying and ones ease or effort to do so. Therefore the air depicts the medium in which we express the pleasure or difficulty of flying. In these dreams the air probably represents the invisible but felt social atmosphere within which we unconsciously exist and strive. Therefore occasionally a dream shows the dreamer losing the air – wind out of the sails – that sustains their flight, suggesting a loss of the support usually gained from public or individual acceptance or approval, or ones own confidence. When we talk about ?clearing the atmosphere? – or there being ?something in the air? this is precisely what dreams of air often refer to.

In far fewer dreams air is mentioned in connection with breathing, as in the example, and depicts, in its absence, a fear of not surviving in connection with what one is facing at the time. In other words a strong sense of being overwhelmed by anxiety or some invading influence, or struggling to survive. See: breath; wind.

Floating on air: relates to ones mind and mental attitude, idealism or lack of it. This may show how we manage to escape from ‘reality’, or painful things such as shyness, by thinking beautiful thoughts, or creating a mental world inside ourselves through meditation. In a positive sense this shows an ability to change your state of mind at will.

Fresh air: Fresh ideas; new approach; mental attitude in which you can feel more alive or creative; an easy ‘atmosphere’ in which to survive.

Poisonous air: Ideas or atmosphere in which you find yourself losing your own identity or deepest motivations; a killing of your own vitality.

Something appearing out of the air: Intuitive perception.

Stuffy air: Mental emotional or social atmosphere in which you are not stimulated or free to think creative or individual thoughts; atmosphere of moral rigidity in which it is difficult to ?breathe?.

Idioms: Free as air; up in the air; light as air; a breathe of fresh air; in the air; a lot of hot air; the air was blue; clear the air; into thin air; put on airs; up in the air.

Example: I am in a cot and suddenly the bottom falls out and I find I am under water – I do not feel the wetness or the cold, I just know I am under water and must not breathe. I cannot hold my breath any longer and gasp for air – still under water – and am surprised I can breathe perfectly normally. Mrs. A. P.

Example: Gliding from a mountain top. Then I am with Pat Brown, a girl friend I knew at school. I am lying on top of her holding her breasts. Then I am led into rooms but avoiding them each time as I felt some sort of trap and threatened imprisonment. To avoid being caught I take a deep breath and this caused me to fly up into the air and away.

The first example illustrates the connection between breath hold and dealing with anxiety. The second shows how flying into the air is an escape mechanism.

Useful Questions and Hints:

Am I afraid of not surviving a situation, or losing support?

What is it I sense ‘in the air’ or atmosphere?

What is my relationship with the environment I am in?

Do the specific events or actions in the dream give a clue to what I am dealing with?

Am I escaping into airy feelings?

Do you problems with breathing, if so see The Slow Breath and The Breath of Life.

Use Acting on Your Dream to define what your dream is about.

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