Inability to face or cope with those emotions, fears, ideas or urges represented in the dream. It is important to find where you felt that sort of terror in the past. This releases its hold on you. This is not easy, because many memories have never been verbalised, or occurred either prior to learning speech, or when you were under anaesthetic. But they can be realised through steady dreamwork.

Example: I was working on Dream Dictation and came across this. I think it is importance in understanding how to deal with things that terrify us.

These really are the ideal conditions to provoke a dream to answer our question or problem. I have used this method myself with some success, one dream being a direct answer to a direct question. At the time of the dream I had been researching on the psychological effects of Yoga exercises or postures – particularly the slow breath. I practised the postures and tried as far as was possible to discover consciously what they did to the emotions, instincts and mind. I then asked myself, just before going to sleep, if there were inner effects I was unconscious of. If so, what were they? In this way I hoped to induce a helpful dream. In fact, I had several, but one in particular helped a great deal. In it I was on an underground train. Two black men were standing in the aisle. The train was nearing my station and I passed them to get to the door. One would not stand aside, even after I said ‘Excuse me’, so I had to push past him. This annoyed him so much that he rushed at me with hands extended to strangle me, but I caught his hands in mine, and gradually forced them down from my throat. As I did so, I thought: ‘This is what Yoga has done’ (i.e. given me the strength to stand against the black man).

The meaning of this dream is not readily understood until it is realised that these black men had appeared in other dreams. In one. They got my throat and began to strangle me, and I could do nothing, but awoke in terror. Here we see the unconscious or black parts of my nature which I associated with my instinctive drives and fears, throttling my conscious life. The second dream is therefore saying that Yoga was developing the strength to face and deal with one’s unconscious fears and repressed urges. There is still a conflict, but at least my conscious self can meet its fears on equal terms, which is a very great part of the battle. See The Slow Breath

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