Dream Within a Dream

Such a dream presents us with emotions or information we may be avoiding while awake. Usually a dream within a dream is a ploy one uses to explain away the impact of the feelings met – which is all the more reason to understand the dream.

The following example makes this very clear.

In the dream-within-a-dream, I had just gone to bed with my husband, in a house in which lots of other people lived as well. But I wasn’t asleep yet. In the darkness, I saw a woman trying to escape from the house. Even though she wasn’t an intruder trying to get in, I sat up in bed and just screamed at the top of my lungs. I felt furious. I think really I felt jealous that she was trying to get out. I wanted to alert everyone she was attempting to escape. (In real life, I’m a very quiet person who seldom gets angry or jealous.)

Then I ‘woke up’ from that dream within a dream and into the next dream, which was a similar scene. I was again in bed with my husband, but I had now woken up from this dream – and of course was still dreaming – and was worried that I had actually screamed in my sleep and woken people up. But my husband was still soundly asleep, and so I realized with relief (but also a little disappointment) that it had all just been a dream and I hadn’t disturbed anyone.

Then I woke up from that dream, and was puzzled. Having read the entry in Dream Dictionary, I was intrigued to see that it said, “Usually a dream within a dream is a ploy one uses to explain away the impact of the feelings met–which is all the more reason to understand the dream.”

I realized it was true that I had pushed certain feelings very far away. At a very deep level, I wanted escape but was furious at myself for wanting escape. Also, at a deep level, I was screaming out for attention, wanting help with my own internal conflict, but felt that no one was noticing. My ‘waking up’ within the dream and being relieved that I had not actually screamed and disturbed anyone shows how at the next level of consciousness I was still trying very hard to keep all of this suppressed. Yet I was also, at this level, a little disappointed at how good I was at keeping my true feelings hidden. Suzanne.

All that we see or seem

Is but a dream within a dream.

Edgar Allan Poe


-LaDonna 2018-06-15 1:40:48

I had a dream within a dream. I was dreaming that I had gone horseback riding only to wake up. I went to my husband (not married but he is my boyfriend) and the children were playing in the yard (not the yard to our house or any I have lived in) bit in my dream it was ours. I told him about my dream and then told him I was going to go riding. I was sure to tell him that I was going to wear a helmet and he kissed me and told me that he was happy about that and I needed to be safe while riding out alone on the Trails. I went outside and mounted up, rode this beautiful palomino stallion to the crest of the hill where he reared and I stood in the stirrups and waved at my husband who was looking out the kitchen window. Then I woke up for real.

    -Tony Crisp 2018-06-18 10:49:37

    LaDonna – In dreams we are nearly always facing ourselves, and what we do is always a virtual reality that we can experiment in and try out all manner of behaviour. So in your dream you carefully created a world, a VR, in which you first made sure your children and partner were okay with your adventure.

    Then you, in dream terms, took hold of the powerful male energy – the beautiful palomino stallion – and directed it on an adventure of consciousness. For in dreams climbing a hill means lifting up your mind to achieve a new view of the world around you. It gives a clear view of your situation, an achievement, something we have made an effort to attain and so we have expanded awareness.

    This symbolises the sexual or instinctive drives that have not been repressed, but allowed, in conjunction with consciousness and reason, to develop the higher possibilities latent in them. Put in plain language this suggests that the sexual drive rises like a wave that carries our conscious desires with it. See https://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/energy-sex-and-dreams/

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