Lure Lured

There is an aspect of the unconscious and dreams which can have the effect of luring one along a path of fantasy and illusion. Some of the ancient myths tell the story of the hero or heroine being lured into difficult situations – Odysseus for instance, lured by the sirens.

Many people who look to dreams for inspiration are actually walking this path of being lured along by a powerful imagined world of experience which does not validate itself. We have a friend who was deep into dream studies and meditation for many years. She went on vision quests and was a spiritual advisor to a tribe of Indians in the Northwest where she and her family lived. One day we heard that she was hospitalised with psychological problems. Many months later, she visited us. The subject of dreams came up and she said, ‘My dreams betrayed me.’ M.S.

Such situations arise from people intellectually interpreting their dreams, and doing so from a stand point of hope and fantastic ideals about who they are and what they believe in. If one actually explored their dreams by entering into them, not thinking about them, such ideals are knocked on the head and the real person revealed.

 Example: Dreamt Pete Taylor was in my father’s shop in London. Someone had shot him in the bicep and I was trying to help him. I had a small box on the counter and there was antiseptic or blood in it, and I put the hurt muscle in it hoping to heal it. When the gunshot flesh was in the antiseptic the blood bubbled and effervesced, becoming hot. I felt the flesh would not be of any use now, but wasn’t sure. In the end though I was considering cleaning away the injured flesh from the arm (left arm I think). All I could see were the sinews with a small amount of flesh on them – no muscle in between. But I began to feel that gradually new cells might grow and develop into a new muscle – granulate.

Here the dreamer explored his dream, and as can be seen it does not deal with fantasy or idealism but the hard facts of life that needed to be felt and dealt with.

“I realised I had met Pete on a walk a few days before and heard him shouting out about, “The Lord Jesus Christ,” in a mocking voice. I was in a wood with my children and stood still waiting for Pete and his friends to pass by – Pete being outside of the wood in a field. As I was entering into these feelings from the dream point of view I realised I avoided Pete because of pride. I hadn’t wished to be associated with Pete. Pete, who had a lovely daughter but who had failed at marriage; was a good musician but had failed to do anything with his skill; started businesses but failed at working for himself – failed. Pete, I felt was a failure.

Suddenly I realised with shock that I had tried to avoid meeting Pete because pride was my defence against my own failure. I was hiding away from my own sense of failure.

But Pete had actually come into the wood so we met, and I saw he was keenly ‘chasing’ a young French woman, Katerine.

My wife came up and I explained this, and the talking helped it flow tremendously. Pete, who failed at marriage but was chasing after young girls, as I had seen him chasing Katerine. Yes, no wonder I didn’t want to associate with that part of me, who couldn’t make it in marriage but chased young women. Pete was living out all the things in me that I despised and tried to keep hidden, even from myself. But now they were out in the open and it was painful. Then a whole mass more came. I saw Katerine as a little pro who was holding herself back, but wanted to wag her fanny everywhere.

Pete, the one who was in battle with his father and who constantly fought authority tooth and nail. He had got to make it alone to prove how much better he was then father/authority. What a waste, when one could have worked together to accomplish more. Conflict wastes so much effort due to the countless retreats. Now it was coming thick and fast so I went down to my wife in the kitchen as it was so helpful to talk.

Yes, it was my father. The shop was the important point in the dream. It was in that shop our conflict had come to a head. It had been there always. The thing already seen about how he used to show me his school books. He didn’t praise what I did, just showed me how good his work was, how neat, how few blots. But in the shop he had set my pattern of behaviour, stamped it out. Because I had got no praise or support from him – my symbol of authority – I had pulled away and gone on along a path of life that he had no understanding of. I went on to my wife about how I had stacked the potatoes in the shop for him as well as I could, but never a word of encouragement – always wrong.

What a fucking waste. He was so desperate for success himself he was trying to squeeze out a few drops from me too for the sake of his pride, to prove to England how much better he was. He was still fighting the battle of the school room, because he was too scared to punch the kids on the nose, so he wanted me to be a success to prove his own value. So from then on I was in conflict with him, trying to prove how good I was, how much better than him, never able to co-operate at school, and work, or in my marriage. I had to keep on at my wife over nothing to prove how good we were. What I did for him was never good enough, never enough. What would get a word of praise? What would suffice? I didn’t understand what he wanted of me. So I kept on at my kids like he kept on at me. Trying to attain the unobtainable instead of a little warmth and love. Dad, you fucking killed me right back then. I sobbed uncontrollable with the pain of experiencing it.

What a waste. My schooling ruled by rebellion because I had to make it alone and “differently” not co-operatively. Anything to fight authority. And I had to fail too, even in my efforts to achieve, because if I succeeded dad would fall to pieces, feeling what a failure he was as a man and a father. I needed a Dad so I dared not succeed. I had to fail if I wanted love. And the reverse side of conflict with authority was the cringing underhand crawling to gain love and approval.

The damage to the bicep, to flesh was the whole area of my life that I was trying to save and heal, but which I needed to let go of, and wait for the new muscle tissue to grow. How does start again at 40? Is it with patience to let the new tissues and strength grow?

My left arm is my support system, my confidence to do things in the world. I am right handed so do things with my right hand, but support everything with my left – hold the paper as I write; hold the nail as I bang it in with my right. So the damage to the muscle was the injury to my supportive confidence through my relationship with my father. As all this was felt I sobbed uncontrollably. I wept for the lost years, the wasted years of my youth. I was convulsed with the pain of not having been loved by my father. Tears fell from me for the failure of my life. I would never have believed one could feel so much pain about something missing in ones life. I had always thought to feel that much pain you would have needed to be beaten or abused in childhood. My father was kind, but he showed no warmth. And that was as bad as being beaten, perhaps worse. I had been severely beaten at school, but it hadn’t scarred me like this.


Useful Questions and Hints:

What have I felt lured by in my dreams?

Can I recognise that lure is often used in a trap?

Do I really allow my feelings in exploring my dreams as in the example?

See Being the Person or ThingSecrets of Power DreamingContext/Theme


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