Saturday, November 2, 2013

Dreams: They can haunt us or help us

 I awoke this morning, having dreamt about competition with a woman for a man. High drama, lusty and frightening. I screamed at this vicious woman while she tried to take my man. He claimed he was mine forever, that she was just a harpy, not to worry. At the end of the dream, she was dead.

After awaking, I was partly horrified and partly stunned. Why did I dream such a dream? I can interpret this dream in numerous ways. Maybe I was fighting against the loss of a loved one, scared he would be taken away by some strange, angry woman. Perhaps I was feeling insecure and needed my man to play the hero, slay the dragon, that Medusa whose head writhed with snakes. Maybe I wanted to kill her, a Hunger Games type of theme: it's either you or me and one of us has to go. We can't both share him and live. Or, perhaps it was a part of me struggling with myself.

I can view the dream as having to do with my family of origin where my sister and I competed for our parents' attention and love. Or, this could be a classic Oedipal or Electra dream, and I am competing with my mother for my father's love. Or, I may have been competing with my father for my mother's love, who knows? What does this dream mean? All of the above, none of the above, and probably more.

Dreams are like snowflakes or fingerprints, each unique but with themes, threads that weave a tapestry over time about our unconscious lives. Dreams can be mirrors of our humanness, or windows into our souls.
What do you dream about? Being chased, or being naked in front of a class where you are supposed to lead, teach or entertain? My favorite dreams are about my stretching out my arms and flying free, or being pregnant.

Dreams may be metaphorical stories like intriguing fiction or wise tomes. We may speak to and listen to our gods while we dream, or we may sort out anecdotal events of the day. Some think that dreams are just neurons firing in our brains, chemical reactions with no real meanings.

I tend to view dreams as messages to our conscious minds from deep within.They may also have a transpersonal element to them, the divine speaking through code. I engaged in a battle to the death last night in my dream. What an archetypal journey, filled with desire, with fear, loss and sacrifice.

Exploration, awareness and understanding are keys to the mysteries of our dreams. Play with your dreams, talk to them, wonder about them. Associate freely to the images and put yourself in each part of the dream, imagining a part of yourself in each character, each place and action. What are your dreams telling you? Are they only haunting you or can they help you while you reflect on the present, the past and the future?