Consciousness of my Dreamtime has returned. I’ve read that sleep scientists say that the average person dreams about two hours out of eight every night. They also say that only about 5% of dreams are remembered. For me, total recall of a dream has been a rare event, happening as little as six times a year. The complete dreams I remember have been epics that seemed worthy of writing about and investigating for possible information about myself.
Of all the theories about dreams, and there are many, I am most aligned with the ideas of Carl Jung and Fritz Perls. Jung and Perls described dreams as messages to the dreamer from their unconscious. They believed that dreams should be noticed and studied for the possible revelations they might bring to the dreamer. Fritz expanded on Jung’s theory, “that everyone in the dream is an aspect of the dreamer” to include inanimate objects.
To put their years of research into my nutshell, my dreams are my sub-conscious mind speaking to me about myself. I am being shown, through my dreams, information about myself that my conscious mind is not privy too. The unconscious mind doesn’t speak ordinary English to me, it speaks through imagery using symbols and archetypes. My dreams rarely have dialogue; I see images, sometimes like a silent movie but often just snapshots.
In the past week or two, I have awakened with memories of my dreams almost every morning. The predominant symbol is water, usually a large body of deep water that is dark and often has debris floating in it or sometimes large shark-like fish. There is a theme of danger in these dream images. For instance last night, the water was choppy with swells, like the ocean on a stormy day, and the floating debris included big slabs of rough wood with nails sticking out, as if a house had been destroyed by a tsunami and was floating in the middle of ocean. Sometimes I am swimming in the water and other times I am out of the water, on a bank, a beach or a boat. My emotion in these dreams is a feeling of confusion and sometime slightly fearful. I have been told by dream interpreters, although I don’t subscribe to universal interpretations of dreams, that water represents emotion. If this is true, I wonder if my dreams of water speak of unfelt, unexpressed “dark” emotions.
The other imagery that has recurred in my dreams for years is what I refer to as my “bathroom” dream. In these dreams the theme could be called, “over-exposure.” The basic premise is I need to urinate, urgently. I can’t find a bathroom. I finally find one and these vary from dream to dream but they have one common feature; the toilet is either totally exposed in a room full of people (usually women) or it is in a stall but the walls are so short that when I sit on the toilet I can see over the top of the wall and the people in the room can, of course, see my head. Sometimes this dream has the added element of the toilet being strange in shape or size or the stall being unusually small. The rooms are usually kind of dim and old-looking,” institutional green” painted wood (I just remembered that the bathrooms of my junior high school looked like this…) as opposed to more modern bright, clean, light tile. In these dreams I feel a slight feeling of discomfort or anxiety but no overriding fear, anger or sadness. These dreams may be speaking to me of unfelt fears about being transparent (which is the goal of my conscious life.)
I believe that the only path to truth is full disclosure/exposure. There is a part of me that believes I am an imposter. It thinks that if everyone could see me for who I truly am, they would be repelled by my dishonesty. It is this part of me that feels unworthy of approval, acceptance, and love. It thinks that I should be more than I am and accomplish more than I do. To this part of me, I am not only never enough, I am a charlatan. That part of me is called “Charmer.”
Fortunately, there is another part of me that doesn’t buy what “Charmer” is selling. She is known to me as “SheRae.” SheRae is the part of me that is kind, compassionate and doing her best to walk a spiritual path to Self-Realization. These parts of myself take turns in the driver’s seat of the “bus of who I am.”
It’s one thing to know, it’s another to act upon what I know. Knowing is a wasted effort if action doesn’t follow. Action based on knowing is what I call wisdom. Knowing without action is what I call foolishness. Am I a wise woman or a fool? Each moment is another opportunity to choose.
- Carl Jung: dreams say things beyond our comprehension (immanence.net)
- Carl Jung on the structure of dreams (gointothestory.blcklst.com)