January, 2007

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1/1/07 - Title: "A Bad Case of Wedding Jitters"

A couple of my relatives have had a short dream. They assume it is predictive. They are upset and let others know. I am getting married today (unclear who is the bride). Just after the ceremonies, we are to leave. In their dreams, my relatives see us in the cab (front) of our car about to set off, when a much larger vehicle smashes into us. We are both crushed.

Though some have had the above dream, the wedding preparations are going ahead. In fact, the bride and I are unaware of the ominous dreams of our relatives. Yet, because of them, there is a sense of foreboding. Everyone has arrived for the ceremonies, due to begin at 8 AM.

I awake to my wedding day and quickly discover that much has gone wrong. During the night there has been a downpour. The roof has leaked badly. My loft apartment has been flooded. My things have been damaged: books, important papers, clothes. I find the slacks and sport coat I am to wear [the same ones I wore in '79 for a wedding in SC (that after all did not happen)],but still have on a dark safari shirt that clashes. I'm unable to find a dress shirt or nice tie to match. There are too many things to deal with at once. I am feeling overwhelmed. I sense, though, that somehow all will be resolved. I have no idea how. I see a couple men working in a driveway adjacent to my apartment building. There (they) are literally laying the foundation, like sophisticated construction workers, for surprises arranged for me and my bride as practical jokes. I mention to one of them there may have to be changes, since unexpected developments have happened. They take this info in but continue as before. Even while talking with me, they are efficiently dumping and smoothing sand and other road or landscaping materials, in preparation for the post-wedding party fun.

[In a final sequence,] I'm still wearing the wrong shirt and have not yet had a chance to shave. The guests have arrived. I have just 25 minutes to resolve the many problems remaining. Several of my brothers are there and empathizing with my predicament. I have the feeling they are supportive and rooting for me, whatever happens. Pete steps forward and quietly, kindly suggests that, if I have a chance, I should take a look in a mirror, adding that my face may need a little touch up. I check myself in the mirror and see I have several fresh abrasions. I'm still bleeding a little. I look like I've had a fall or been in a fight, but I do not remember what caused the injuries.

1/3/07 - Title: "Intruder Alert! - In Danger of Being Absorbed"

I'm in a room at night and see, in drab colors, several (6-8) alien-looking beings, all of them a little different from each other, coming toward me. They have trunk-like appendages, rather than legs or arms, and no apparent faces, not even eyes. They are moving slowly but implacably and in sufficient directions and numbers that I cannot get away. Their exact intentions are unclear, but they seem sinister.

[In another segment, same dream, ]I am being attacked by an arm of a giant octopus, its girth as thick as an adult human leg, its many succors (suckers) menacing and implacable (inevitable, unstoppable).

[Fran showed me a picture yesterday of a large "Buddha's hand citron" fruit she had photographed that day in an exotic FL garden. It looked similar to the dream beings but was a pale yellow, whereas the dream creatures were of a variety of other pale colors: red, brown, violet, orange, perhaps green. Without eyes = without egos? Multiple meanings of trunk? Creatures robot-like? Appendages = extra baggage? No faces = no personas? No feces? Octopus = a smothering female force like the archetype of a Jewish mother (Fran's mom), smothering with her "succor" or well intentioned but controlling, "nurturing" behavior. 8 is repeated: 6-8 creatures + octo (= 8). Meaning?

Both the robot- or zombie-like, faceless aliens, with up to 8 legs, and the octopus leg, seeking to draw me in and smother with its "succor(s)" (and dark central hole) are reminiscent of the "alien" other of many men's nightmares, the "castrating female." This is archetypal Freudian imagery. It calls to mind a fundamental concern of men, the fear of being dominated by a woman who is the opposite of submissive: strong-willed; inflexible; unbending; shrewish; a "bitch," and with whom they cannot even communicate, for she seems entirely too alien a sentient being from them for that to be possible. Besides, men often feel they have no leverage with such women, who appear to be complete and content within themselves or in the company of their own sex, needing or wanting little if anything from the male but to control him, keep him safely in his place, or perhaps depend upon and use his facility with money, without which the comfortable status quo "boat" would be severely rocked for awhile. Such a male, in this type circumstance, may feel he has little recourse but to leave the unsatisfactory relationship. How else can he regain his self-respect? Alternatively, of course, some men in this perceived situation will resort to violence, in an attempt to restore their "proper dominance" over the woman in question.

A Jungian interpretation of the dream, though, must take note of some positive aspects of the dream. The small self ego may not like the notion of being overcome or absorbed by Buddha beings without false personas or egos, but through meditation such beings or inner resource selves or guides may indeed arise and take over from the false or limited ego, which would be a good thing. No faces (feces) could also mean they are without apparent blemishes or shortcomings. Succor implies healing. And here there are multiple "succors" available to aid with my healing.]

1/7/07 - Title: "The Thrill of Letting Go, Falling, and Flying"

Someone is trying to shoot me, as well as a couple other men, in a high (huge) building with many rooms. We are high in the lavish urban apartment building or hotel, several stories up. The building has artistic architectural embellishments and designs. There are transparent fluted [correct meaning: having long, rounded grooves (?)] terraces and awnings, as well as wide open spaces. There are also many gossamer, wing-like structures or curtains draping down, beautiful in the moonlight. One of the other men is black, middle-aged, strong, and large. He is having affairs with two women on different levels in the building. He crawls outside the building to reach their rooms. The other man is white, middle-aged, and accident-prone. He clambers about outside too. Nobody will be surprise if he falls to his death. At times, people think he may be trying to kill himself. Yet huge bullet- or missile holes keep appearing in the transparent structures or gossamer curtains in line with where he, I, and the black man would have been standing. Only by letting go and falling (accidentally or deliberately) can we each by chance avoid being killed. But then we are in danger of falling to our deaths. However, the last time this happens I realize that I'm falling slowly enough it is more like flying. I reach out and tough (touch) some(one) of the transparent or gossamer material(s) as I'm on the way down. This slows my fall further. Now the experience is more fun than fearful. I seem to fly, glide, or swing down. At least three times I grasp handholds amid the transparent draping materials, till I safely come to rest on a balcony, exhilarated, easily avoiding getting hurt.

[To avoid getting hurt, first let go (stop trying to control things so much), and then reach out and touch (call? communicate with? integrate with? have sex with?) someone. Everything is transparent: life is richest if I practice "being," meditate, and allow myself to feel and grieve. There is no replacement for what was lost, but there are new things to be found. There is already some integration going on: affairs with the women.]

1/8/07 - Title: "Marathon Man"

I'm in a series of physically and emotionally draining marathons. I even keep a picture scrapbook or journal album about them. I'm also getting medical monitoring and exercise coaching. The marathon course must be run over and over, but, though I put in great effort and do the course again and again, I am never able to finish well. The intention is to finally get good enough on the run for one more chance at having a couple of great kids, a boy and a girl. They are not merely vivid in my mind's eye. In the journal album I have several photos of these kids. They're a couple of perfect children, about age 4 for the smart, handsome golden boy and age 3 for the bright, cute princess of a girl. But I'm never quite good enough and do not reach the finish line fast or well enough to deserve the prize of these youngsters or any other kids at all. The captain of my running team asks me why I've given up. In great frustration and with a sense of hopelessness, I angrily race with him down the marathon course once more, hard and fast as I can. I actually match his running stride through the course, yet it is a huge challenge, as if it may kill me, though he is hardly winded. "I'm trying, over and over, and I've been trying!" I yell. The captain is encouraging and insistent that I renew my efforts, but he is younger and more fit. He runs easily beside me. "I can never run fast enough to overcome the blast from the past!" I shout. And then I show him album pictures of the beautiful kids [whom I imagine I would have had and should have had, but for messing things up in my past].

1/10/07 (AM) - Title: "A Role for Errol Flynn"

I'm on the run. Several of my friends or community have been rounded up by the invaders/occupiers. Many have been killed. People have been trying to hide and protect me but the enemy now knows where I am. In a tightly cramped room with no windows, I am hiding among a couple of others of my community but in an area already occupied, so that my confederates are not yet under suspicion. There is no way out. One of the storm trooper-like enemy with a shotgun has forced himself in, but, once he's in, I twist the shotgun out of his grasp as my confederates slam the door before any more of the enemy can get in. At the same moment, I pull the shotgun's trigger, blowing away most of the storm trooper's face. I hear other storm troopers pounding on the outside of the heavy door, demanding to get in. But for the moment they cannot. Maybe it's jammed, or we can pretend it is. They'll kill me instantly if they get in, and maybe my confederates too, or else take me prisoner, torture and interrogate me, and then kill me. I motion to my confederates. We must quickly change my clothes with those of the man I've just killed. His would (wound) is so awful that they won't be able to identify him at once. After I'm in the storm trooper uniform, maybe they won't realize, at least not at once, that I'm one of those they see as the enemy. We rush to arrange the switch, realizing we'll have to be brilliantly quick and good at acting to pull this off. "We're trying!" We yell to the people outside the door, as if we can't get it open but want to.

1/10/07 (PM) - Title: "Lost in (a super-suburb) Space"

It is late afternoon, then dusk. Night is falling fast. I'm on foot and alone in an unfamiliar part of a large city. At first I thought, much earlier, I was in a new (to me) part of Austin and that I knew my way, but I've walked a long distance since then and have seen no familiar landmarks. I had a car before starting my walk, but now cannot remember where I left it. I ask someone what is the next major thoroughfare in the direction I'm going, but he claims not to know and is neither friendly nor helpful. I think he is just leery of dealing with a stranger. I appear to be without a cell phone or other resources (no credit cards, cash, ID). I think perhaps I might call my wife if I had money or a phone, but realize I do not know enough about my location to tell her where I am or how to meet me. The blocks between streets here are very long (like half a mile or more each) and hilly. The walk is thus up and down a lot and wearing me out. Night lights have begun to appear in this general area (street lights, shops), but I come to lit areas too infrequently to learn much from them, as each new one is unfamiliar too, and then the dark areas between are fearfully long as I continue walking, hoping someone (somehow) to find where I am, or to think what to do, or to get inspiration from... I know not what. The temperature is already cool and getting colder. There are giant trees and spacious, huge lawns, almost park-like, around big residential houses between the unfamiliar, lit streets. There are very few people, in fact only the one uncooperative fellow has been met outside.

[I'm reminded of northern Virginia suburbs or rural areas of Tacoma, WA, except that the trees are even larger, taller, and more stately, the blocks longer, and the houses and immense yards bigger, than in those places. I suppose the dream is a metaphor for the unfamiliar territory of the end of life, of approaching death. It may also indicate the anxiety of being without a familiar ego (no ID), or simply of being itself, when things are very unfamiliar. The huge trees, hills, and park-like lawns are beautiful, and if I were not anxious to find my way I would no doubt find them peaceful, inspiring, or spiritual, like natural cathedrals. I noticed that, despite the newness of the area, all the streets are laid out in the traditional perpendicular intersections pattern. Thus, though the distances are too immense for me to see well or far enough in each direction, nonetheless the intersections themselves could represent the present moment as well as a conjunction of the past (what is behind), the future (what is ahead), the rational or analytical (to the right), and the intuitive or insightful (to the left). That I am going on ahead despite not knowing where I am is like the dream work. It feels out of my control, which the ego certainly does not like, but there is the hope that someone or something will sort of clue me in before too much longer. I don't know what losing my car means.]

1/11/07 - I discussed the last entry dream ("Lost In ... Space") at the DG last night, with these new insights:

  • The very long blocks refer to big psychological blocks to progress.

  • It is both a quest (or journey) and an ego-issues dream.

  • There are many ups and downs to the quest.

  • From the ego's point of view, progress can be exhausting.

  • In addition, the ego gets naturally very nervous in metaphorically unfamiliar territory, when it feels not in control, or when there are other perceived threats: getting darker (more under the influence of the unconscious), lonely, worn out, without ID, etc.

  • Despite such causes for ego anxiety, objectively everything may be fine, working out as it needs to, and for the best.

  • The dream has similarities to the berm and jungle dream of latter December. In both this and that one, there is the worry the ego has that it may be overwhelmed, concern about the dark (thick jungle vs. suburbs at night), and yet amazing growth (almost impenetrable jungle vs. enormous trees).

  • The dark represents the unconscious, and possibly also my feminine side.

  • The person I ask for info about the next major thoroughfare doesn't want to deal with my ego because it is a stranger (to him), not real, a false self.

  • On the other hand, he probably was giving me (as opposed to my ego) an answer and potentially help, just not in the form I understood or that my ego could accept. I might ask for a dream that clarifies the situation: what message the shadow self has to convey.

  • One might be inclined to just stay and enjoy one of the park-like huge lawns, but this would likely be a mistake, since one cannot both park and make progress on the quest/journey.

  • The trees represent good growth, life, and positive family ties (the family tree) that may prove to be valuable ongoing resources.

  • Though in this dream things may seem bleak from the ego's perspective, one need only remember the presenting dreams (1st couple discussed with the DG last summer) to readily see that progress has been made.

1/12/07 - Title: "No Cover"

I'm in a big, for a long while unused or disused bathroom. Most everything is white, but dingy. The plumbing doesn't work right. There are small white tiles on the floor with grout in between. The place has flooded often. All is bare except for a couple sodden books, such as a thick, waterlogged, white pages phone book. Thus, there is no furniture except for an installed (white) toilet with missing lids (no "lid" for either the toilet bowl or water tank) and an old (painted white) metal tub. I'm in there alone, thinking about what I'd need to do to make this place comfortably livable again. In fact, it seems I've been hanging out here (squatting?) despite the disrepaired, disused, and unfurnished state of the place. I turn on some water, but immediately there is a new flood, so that the pages of the already waterlogged phone book (or a thick catalogue) float, drifting slowly in the deepening water like a submerged woman's unsecured hair does in a pool. Then the water mostly drains out again, but the room is left all wet. A young man comes in through the entry/exit (no door) from/to the rest of the interior building, asks me something, to which I answer something else, and he says he is thinking about moving in, and looks the place over, as if he wants to get the room fixed up again before he takes up residence here. He goes through a second doorway which I had not noticed before. It is on the other side of the room from the entry/exit. I assume it leads onto another part of the building, perhaps the roof. The light is brighter through there, as though it opens to the outside where the sun is shining. I wonder where I'll go if he moves in, and if I could keep the place looking so uninviting nobody else would want it. Neither I nor the other man is wearing clothes. This seems natural.

[I have these overall impressions, which probably are more or less, but not precisely accurate.

I do in fact have plumbing problems (an enlarged prostate that must be monitored, for which I take medication and need to use a bathroom more frequently. The condition was diagnosed about 12 years ago and gradually has gotten worse, but reached a plateau around 2000. It is a nuisance, but, except early in the morning or an hour or so before bed, is not really a big deal now that I'm retired. It had gotten severe enough that it was interfering with my productive time when I still worked. My volunteer work is not much affected because I choose hours more in the middle of the day that are not limited by frequent trips to the restroom. The difficulty comes and goes, with occasional exacerbations that can really be a pain.

Everything is bare in the dream but this is natural and all white (right). "Bare" would seem to be another "be" or "being" pun of some type, but I cannot yet figure it out, unless it is simply two forms of "be:" i.e. "be" and "are." The latter would imply a plural form, two or more, which, combined with the fact there are two doorways and two people in the dream, would indicate dawning awareness, per the DG. I feel as though I am gradually "baring all" (just as all is bare in the dream) in the DG, but that this is natural (OK, safe).

The other man in the dream is my shadow self. The ego worries that he will be replacing him in these wonderful digs, which he hopes to keep so inhospitable that nobody else would want them. (Why would even he want them!?) The ego is squatting here (perhaps in more ways than one, since the lack of a toilet seat means he has no place to sit even when shitting), so he is not here legitimately (as, being ego, a false self, would follow). His only means of staying is to keep the place so unattractive nobody else would be interested in moving in with permission. It would appear he may have been doing that for a long time. In fact, the conditions by now, with just the ego in residence, seem not merely inhospitable but intolerable. Though it would be inconvenient for the ego to make other arrangements, clearly it would be far better if the shadow self not only shows the way to a brighter part of the building, or getting outside the dingy ego circumstances, but also assures the plumbing room (associated with self-expression) is working properly again and that this part of the building is once more made a sunnier, more comfortable place.

The floods and residual wetness imply lots of prior emotional storms or turbulence, with some remaining sadness or anger, for which grieving continues to be appropriate.

The only presence of the anima in the dream is the image of the slow motion of a woman's hair underwater, consistent with her being dead, perhaps drowned by the raging waters of a previous flood or emotional tempest.

There are at least a couple books referred to, again emphasizing dawning awareness. Their significance, though, escapes me. Perhaps the dream journal is itself the catalogue, a cataloguing of the dream related events and meanings. After living alone in such poor circumstances for a long time, the phone book white pages may be a first step for the ego to "reach out and touch someone." But it cannot be very functional in its current waterlogged state. Even the cataloguing effort is somewhat futile if the pages are so sodden with residual emotions that they will "fall apart" if anyone tries to read them. There currently seems to be some dysfunction in the self-expression aspect of the "plumbing," implying problems with the cataloguing. Sure enough, there is the sense that in my other journals, in "The Vintage Diarist," I have for some time been experiencing a writer's block, with great difficulty finding things of interest to express beyond a rather basic cataloguing of my and Fran's lives. A comparison of the recent entries with those of the early "Steps" diaries demonstrates a significant contrast. The prior writings are relatively rich, the latter, more meager.

The exact meanings here are as yet obscure, but the impression again is of post traumatic stress still playing a major part in my life. The remedy or means to transform the situation would still appear to be "being," grieving, meditation, and becoming more aware generally.]

1/18/07 - Title: "It's Nice to Be Appreciated"

I accidentally and noisily release a huge, long fart. Immediately a young man in the room laughingly says: "WOW!"

1/23/07 - Title: "New to the Center, Seeking Friendship and Direction"

I'm in a great, tall modern building in a strange city on a big university campus or civic center at night. There are lots of huge windows and good views. The grounds around the building/campus/center are beautifully landscaped and well lit, organized and cared for with plenty of healthy grassy areas and tall evergreens between wide expansive walkways that crisscross and seemingly go on, in places, for miles. I'm here for some ceremony, as though my wife and I are getting married again, tomorrow. She's staying in one room or suite and I in another.

My wife and I meet briefly, as for supper, and I mention hoping her sense of direction in this big place is better than mine, because I'm already all turned around and not sure I can find where I need to go tomorrow, evidently to a part of the center far from this location. She is reassuring, but evidently has not yet seen how immense this place is herself, so I'm not at all sure she'll be able to find her way either.

There are lots of other people around, some who are just visiting from out of town and will be going to the ceremony too, and others who live here all the time. An attractive young lady with a swarthy complexion and little attire, like a belly dancer, is one of those living near my rooms and, on seeing me going out, introduces herself and insists on introducing me to the others living in suites near mine. All are very friendly. We get to talking that evening, at ease with each other, almost as though we've all known one another our whole lives. The subject of cancer comes up, and someone mentions that the rate of mortality is lower now. I tell them about my brother, Ralph [who died in 1990 of brain cancer], and that the doctors did the best they could for him then, but treatments were not as advanced. Surgery, radiation, and chemo were used, and they... [choking up] all took a toll."

1/25/07 - The DG discussed my most recent prior entry dream ("New to the Center... ") last night, along with several others' dreams. Insights or interpretations relevant to mine were as follows:

  • The dream is marvelously, even literally expansive.

  • The large windows giving great views may represent clear insights, transparent intuitions.

  • Both the setting and content of the dream demonstrate progress from the titanic geological forces type dream at the outset of my involvement with the DG.

  • There is a pair of anima characters, my wife and the belly-dancer lady. They are complementary, indeed almost identical, rather than opposing one another, and both serve positive functions for the self (Self). Together, they are extraordinarily powerful inner being allies.

  • Between them, the anima characters have knowledge of the vast center, as they are able to orient themselves and negotiate this inner realm (despite the doubts and anxieties of the ego), and their knowledge comes from the hara or spiritual/meditative center located in the belly.

  • An excellent source of information on dreams is Jeremy Taylor, and from his works I can find further insight into the meanings in this dream, as with the reference to cancer, which does not actually refer to real cancer in the dreamer, but has another meaning.

  • Cancer is uncontrolled growth, and its relevance to the dream work may have a similar meaning, but this is not clear.

  • The animus character, Ralph, partly represents the ups and downs of life, as Ralph and I were at times very close and at others unpleasantly antagonistic toward one another.

  • The cancer treatments that (each and all) took their toll represent the work on myself I have done to eradicate destructive aspects, and, from the dream work perspective, though realizing this is about the dream character and not the real Ralph, it is best that he is dead, meaning that the aspects of my self associated with the negative Ralph qualities, from which there was at times so much defensiveness, aggression, and competitiveness between us, and some self-hate in Ralph's make-up (i.e. in my make-up, since it is of course my dream), are now comparatively in the past.

  • From one point of view, those "treatments," took a terrible toll (on me), but, from another, they have led to the person I am today, relatively free of self-destructive attitudes and fierce antagonisms and, indeed, in an inner place of dawning awareness and healthy transformation.

  • Although the ego is fearful of this immense center, that it may get lost here or whatever, in fact the dream is saying that I have the capacity to be here, that I already know how to get around in this beautiful inner landscape, that I can get to the part of the center where I need to be, even though it offers astounding possibilities, beyond ego's wildest dreams (or nightmares).

  • The "center" has spiritual/meditative/inner being meanings.

  • The fact that my wife and I are to remarry tomorrow indicates heightened communication and integration between my various selves, as does the introduction between myself and the belly dancer character and between me and all the others to whom she introduces me, as well as our discussions that evening, as if we were friends who had known each other our whole lives, for we had! All are part of me. The dream is reminiscent of the last portion of the treatment of multiple personality folks (such as were so brilliantly depicted in both "The Three Faces of Eve" and "Sybil"), when the negative selves have been banished and the numerous remaining aspects of the self are becoming reunited.

  • It is possible the dream was predictive and that the ceremony "tomorrow" actually referred to an imminent funeral. When I picked a picture (of Rose, the perky, upbeat, much liked mother of one of my sisters-in-law) last week for our latest newsletter issue, it occurred to me, oddly, that she was almost speaking to me, as though she were saying "Goodbye." After the dream, I got a call with the news that Rose had been taken from her nursing home to the hospital, with pneumonia and congestive heart failure. I had not consciously known of either condition when I had picked her picture for the new issue or had the dream. The next day, yesterday, I was called again to say that she had died. Fran and I (or just me, if Frances cannot attend due to one of her performances) will soon be going to her funeral, once arranged.

  • Some might not agree, and I have trouble acknowledging it myself, but the DG has affirmed several times that the dreams indicate there is much sweetness in me, to which both the suites in this dream and the bees (providers of honey) in earlier dreams refer.

  • There is nurturing and nourishing going on (as with my wife and I sharing a meal in the dream). And shortly before the dream, my wife and I actually had gone to a Persian restaurant here in town, Alborz, where there are at times attractive young belly dancers who may also have a swarthy appearance.

1/31/07 - Title: "New Guy On the Spot"

I'm in a graduate course or some other more free-wheeling, informal, mostly self-directed program of study, but with both a male and female instructor/mentor/advisor. I drop in whenever I wish, as if it is entirely up to me, and I'm so new to the program that it feels relaxed, like everything is interesting but there is absolutely no pressure. A few others, both male and female students who have been studying longer, often for many years, are regularly asked to give presentations to the staff and to the class at large, but they have plenty of opportunity to prepare.

I arrive one day as usual and again am expecting to more or less just audit the class but to contribute nothing significant myself. A highly intelligent young man, a PhD candidate [who reminds me of a blend of Steve and a fellow I used to work with in 1972, at the UT Law School book store, University Co-op East], is in the final stages of getting a talk ready. I assume he'll be giving it today. He and the woman instructor/advisor there today [a blend of Christine and Tonya] acknowledge my arrival with a nod, but they are preoccupied, so I just keep quiet and sit down inconspicuously, somewhat in the middle where there are a lot of empty seats, to await his talk.

But then the woman looks to me and says "OK, Larry! We'll have your talk in 5 minutes." I am surprised, even shocked, and anxious at first, then realize it must be a joke. I try to laugh it off, "That's a good one!" I say, smiling, but the man and woman are looking at me seriously, as if to say: "You're the only one who thinks this is funny. And, by the way, we'll now expect your presentation in just 4 more minutes." I have complete "speaker's block," with no idea what topic to present or how I'll manage to deliver it without preparation. If this talk is to happen, it must be completely extemporaneous. I'll have to be utterly spontaneous.

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