January, 2012

2 12 13 14 17 29

1/2/12 - Title: "A Noise in the Night"

Scene one - I have laid down to sleep after (in reality) getting up to go to the bathroom. I have (I think) not yet fallen asleep when I hear a loud banging at the front of the house, either at the garage or the front door. (The porch light bulb has burned out, in reality, this only discovered when I had tried to turn it on just before going to bed, since we ordinarily leave it on at night. So, I cannot look out the front door peephole to see if anyone is there.) I decide to keep lying in bed and see if the pounding noise is repeated. It occurs to me that Fran may for some reason have gotten up and gone outside while I was in the bathroom, then maybe has locked herself out accidentally. (I am in reality dealing with an asthma attack and allergic reaction, that is like a bad cold plus cough, and am not in the same bedroom as she.) I figure if it is she, the pounding will be repeated or she will ring the doorbell or call out to me to let her in. This does not happen, and eventually I fall back asleep.

Scene two - It is early morning, though still mostly dark, and Fran is not yet up. I get up and go do something - in the kitchen, I think - and on my way back, past the front door, I see a UPS invoice sticking through the space between the door and the doorjamb, on the right, a little above the doorknob. I realize there must have been a package delivery around 6 this morning, and this explains the pounding. No doubt when I open the front door there will be a package on the porch. I try to figure out what we were expecting to be delivered, but cannot think of anything. (I wake up, then, and realize the second scene was a dream, but still think the first one was reality. I note that the UPS explanation for what occurred came in a dream and that it will prove clairvoyance in dreams when I get up and discover that there is indeed an invoice in the crack at the door and a package on the porch. About then I hear, in reality, that Fran is now up, and I get up too.)

[Later, I asked Fran if she had heard the loud pounding at the front of the house. She had not. This alone does not prove it was a dream, but, since neither she nor our dog, who is quite sensitive to strange sounds, failed to react to this "noise," I am now convinced I did indeed dream the whole thing. I also checked the doorjamb and front porch. There was neither a UPS invoice nor any package on the porch.

Of Frances, I'd say she is highly intelligent (much more into her thinking than her feelings) and talented, excellent at finding and managing quality time for pursuing her interests, a good teacher, rather sarcastic and cynical, but in general has a good sense for what is funny and is both amusing and easily amused.

I think UPS is some kind of pun, but if so am not getting it yet. This seems a bit of a stretch, but maybe it is a play on the word "up," perhaps referring to spiritual matters. Of course, it could also be about expression: "UPS = a plural form of you pee?

UPS delivers, so maybe it is about some kind of new birth in my life, some very young, growing energy part of me.

In the dream I definitely thought of the UPS "guy" as male, so it would be some shadow part of me, and could also represent my concept of a HP.

6 may be about lists or flexibility. The "I Ching" #6 hexagram indicates: eventual good fortune if one pursues one's endeavor with caution and in small steps, but if one follows through with the matter to the bitter end, there will be a contentious, bad outcome.

This reminds me of the differences that remain between me and the woman who was one of my sponsors. She has often expressed hostility toward me since losing her job and since I once, briefly but firmly confronted a man in our Alanon group who had tended to be overbearing in meetings and in Group Consciences, after which he never returned. Her attitude was unreasonable and persisted even after I pointed out I had done nothing to her or to warrant this reaction.

She has tended to use "cross talk," getting across her feelings in front of others, never in private, as though feeling it is safer to attack me this way, when I would be reluctant to more fully express my anger about it. I am angry not merely at her reactions, then, which I feel are not fair and are contrary to the very principles she supposedly was teaching and modeling while being my sponsor, but also that she is attacking me in ways I cannot confront her on at the time, as much as I feel is warranted, and then afterward she denies everything when I do confront her, pretending that she is only expressing her opinions for the good of the group. I wonder if she really believes that denial or is simply running from accountability.

I can understand, if she had reacted in any similar fashion to her last boss with whom she says she could not get along, why she was fired. Ironically, though I have since she resigned as my sponsor not initiated communications with her, she keeps attacking on one little pretext or another, as though she would rather have a negative engagement than none. There is a strong impulse to let her have it, right in the Alanon meeting if necessary, with both barrels rather than continuing to "take it" when she does her cross talk directed toward me.

All that makes me think perhaps a meaning of UPS is "YOU PISS, " short for "You piss me off!" This UPS message has not yet been properly delivered, and, per both the "I Ching" as well as Alanon philosophy, better not be, but feels like it ought to be.

Meanwhile the Fran anima is probably there to show by example similar qualities and attitudes to Fran's, which it would be good (healthy) for me to own and better express.]

1/12/12 - Title: "Eyewitness: After the Deluge"

I am somehow involved in preparing and transporting vast stores and bins of food to feed people in the midst of a huge flood in Washington, D.C., and, simultaneously (or in a different scene - not clear), making a movie, videotaping the efforts to save the government, and the ongoing functions of government taking place in the midst of a great flood there.

In one scene, several feet or meters deep of brown water is flowing down a major D.C. street near the White House and Capitol Building, and I am there filming as beautiful clouds are on view above and large animals (horses? cattle? water buffalo? elephants? wildebeests?) are swimming in the deep current of this new "river," as I am riding in a rescue helicopter, just flying a little above the water, and inside are members and/or staff of the Presidential Family as well as at least two large bins of hot soup, the bins so big one could easily swim in each one.

In another scene, some of the people closest to the President are amazed to learn how much access I have had to do my filming, as a result of which I have gotten amazing footage of key personal details of the drowned or of the swimming escape through deep waters of high government people, their relatives, and animals caught in the great inundation. This scene is immense in scope, for one can see long distances. Everywhere the flood covers the thoroughfares as well as far up the sides of buildings.

[Mostly, I am not yet understanding this dream, though clearly there is (or soon will be) a lot of feeling and/or expression of emotion (the really vast flood that even threatens the seat of governance). At times, the scope is large enough it is almost as though there is a Higher Power view of things, yet at others there are much more personal details. There are at once instances of being overwhelmed by (drowned in) the emotions and of swimming and being carried along with them. There is a kind of detachment, flying above the waters, as well as the plight of the animal nature, seemingly at the mercy of the torrent of feeling. And there are great quantities of nurturance (hot soup) available, yet even these vast stores and bins of it may not be enough for the extent of the catastrophe (at least from the ego's view).]

1/13/12 - Title: "The Untested Talent"

Scene One - A woman (not known in reality), maybe my ex (wife? girlfriend?) wants her key back and does not want me to come over to or enter her place again. I tell her she can trust me, but she is adamant. We are in her place when this discussion occurs. She's going away awhile. She does not want me here, especially while she'll be away. (I think I hand it over.)

Scene Two - I am talking to a woman. She is young, maybe in her 30s. I am a few years younger still, a student. She is, I think, an advisor or counselor, or perhaps a sympathetic graduate level or university level teacher or professor. We are meeting first in an office type setting, her office, but it is dark, as though it has taken on the ambiance of a setting in my head, some kind of reflection of a nuanced, real South (perhaps of William Styron - the author of Lie Down in Darkness and Sophie's Choice, et al - or William Faulkner - The Sound and the Fury and As I Lay Dying, et al - except, no, it is not like them, but my nuanced, real South).

She wants to know why I am not applying myself to my courses. I tell her I just don't. I ask my friends - and there are many willing to help me - about what is said in the classes so I can get by. I don't go to most classes or even take the exams, but I do well enough without much effort. I tell her I wanted to be a writer, but had no confidence, so I have been spending my time at university instead, only my heart is not in it.

We go for a walk, which takes us toward a marsh. I tell her it reminds me of where I grew up, except that was more a swamp.

And suddenly it is as though we are there, in the midst of this fecund, deadly, swampy place, but sitting and talking as before.

And she seems really, really impatient with me.

Scene Three - Just as at the end of the last scene, except there is another me there, as well as me. He is not exactly the same, but somehow much like me. And she is still there.

There are three chairs now, hers, mine, and that of this other man, ours facing hers, the three of us roughly in a circle.

He is giving her some excuses, glibly answering without really answering, and she gets so furious with him her eyes glow gold from within and she throws something at him - chalk pieces or something else, I don't know - hard and hits him, and yells or screams and acts like she wants to slap him or punch him. I am shocked, anxious, and sad that she is so angry with him and wish I could make her happy again but don't know how. And I don't have the talent. He does.

[As I experienced this dream, there are two levels of separation that occur or which have already occurred but are represented in the dream. The first involves a separation (in scene one) from my anima, the second (in scene three) between my practical yet not so talented self and a shadow self who apparently really has a lot more talent but has not used it. In the second scene, it is just the (undivided) ego and my anima, and I have the talent that is not really being expressed but genuinely feels like it is latent there within me, yet I cannot deal with her anger. Then, in the last scene I am the ego I normally have, unaware of any such creative writing talent, overly concerned about how others react toward me, co-dependently wanting to please others, yet feeling there is nothing I can do about it, mostly lacking either the detachment or the creativity to be other than I am.

There is, however, some reason for optimism. There are indications of transformation as well as dawning awareness. The shadow "me" lacks confidence but apparently still has real talent. The anima has generally positive qualities of feeling that are being modeled. And there seems at least the potential for better integration between these three aspects of self. Also, significant parts of the dream occur near or in a marsh or swamp, places where there is life and emotion and a better coming to terms with the ambiguities and complexities of a more real, less idealized childhood, one where truths are more valued than stereotypes, like the one of being a victim.

Dreams speak in metaphors, so this may have nothing to do with a part of me having literary brilliance, but could represent the part of me instead which has the kind of insight and understanding Styron and Faulkner both had into the "soul" of widely diverse and fully formed characters, men, woman, educated, uneducated, Black, White, etc. With that kind of holistic view, I could be, or at least express being, more integrated than seems generally to be the case in ordinary awareness.

The "South" here probably represents not the southern U.S. literary tradition but my own shadow childhood and background.]

1/14/12 - Yesterday my friend, Janet, who's been doing dream interpretations for closer to 20 than 10 years, helped me out by phone with the 1/12 and 1/13 dreams shown just above.

She indicated her general impression of the 1/12 dream, "Eyewitness: After the Deluge," was that I was really getting the picture concerning my emotional stuff.

Concerning the next dream, "The Untested Talent," she agreed with me that it was a metaphor and not about my finally becoming a great writer. She said these specific things about it instead:

  • Scene one, she believes, is about taking positive action instead of staying with negative feelings, as about my former sponsor.

  • Scene two, she thinks, has to do with a new, positive anima. In addition, it is about radiance ("I Ching" meaning of hexagram #30) as well as amped up 3, or transformation.

  • To write in a dream, she says, is about constructing one's own story. She says there's something about completing or constructing my own story that I am not doing. What do I really want to do? There may be some unconscious material that is still in the way.

  • Now, more than added learning about things for my own growth, I need the experience! After answering what it is I really want to do, I need to be about doing it! I have already found out in a theoretical way about how to grow and be. What is left is simply to start applying myself!

  • To put it another way, she says, I do not need to process anymore, so learning further theory is not what is called for. Once I know the answer to what I really want to do, then there is much energy available to put into doing that. Maybe it is counseling non-professionally (as a volunteer). Maybe something else.

  • Re scene three, she says gold is final transformation. My anima or feelings can already see it. My ego does not think I can do it, what is called for now by my feelings, but my shadow can appease (or fulfill the wishes of) those feelings.

  • The ego will have to: 1. Get with the program; or 2. Die and get out of the way, replaced by a more flexible and resourceful ego; or 3. Go through something rather hard, from which it can become tough enough to simply go ahead and "do what needs to be done."

  • It is at this stage in her own dream work, at various stages, that Janet has insisted on the change she needs to get to the next level, failing which she wants to just die (to have the resistive ego die). She urges me to the same degree of strong-willed persistence in pushing through whatever is holding me back from the added progress I need.
  • 1/17/12 - Title: "Creating Gardens of Eden"

    I have gone downstairs in a big, mostly empty building, to a vast open space basement area. It is at once like a big empty basement beneath the big building and an open, outdoor dry area, like a savannah.

    Part of the time it is as though I am just learning how to create a natural area or garden here, and part of the time it is as if I am the teacher or supervisor, and others are doing this partly under my direction.

    In each of several scenes then, a total of about 4 times, in an outdoor-like and also basement-like area an artificially organized garden area is set up. At least one of these times, I am doing it. Other times, younger people are each doing it. In at least a couple scenes, young women are creating these natural settings after getting lessons and overall direction from me. In each scene as I remember it there was just one person working on the natural garden area or observing and responding to things in it, once it had already been set up.

    From the marble floors of the posh basement-like area, natural settings are being created, and also from the dry, outdoor-like, savannah area this is being done.

    The newly created "natural" settings have a few things in common: they each have a look of planned chaos, with large, manmade (or human shaped) rectangular rock or big natural stone pieces strewn about or in piles, around 3-5 feet high, open spaces where water is introduced, making shallow streams and ponds, and the uninvited, but sooner or later always present, appearance of one or more small, young snakes.

    In one scene, several small young poisonous snakes show up, but in most it is a single little serpent.

    One of these, in at least one scene, is colorful, like spotted and banded red and white, while in the other scenes the snakes are dark, like small, thin water snakes. I know that the red and white one is especially poisonous and dangerous. It also has more "personality" in its head and "face," due to the symmetrical presence of red ridges and light lower spaces on the front of its head. The head of this snake actually looks more like that of a diminutive carnivorous dinosaur, as depicted in movies, than a snake's head.

    The snakes seem to have instincts or natural intelligence, especially the red and white one, but are not a threat so long as one pays attention to them, knows where they are, and stays out of their way. The trouble comes when a person falls asleep in the artificial "natural" settings or gets distracted, which is very easy to do, and so loses track of them.

    Then, to be safe, one cannot do much of anything till first looking everywhere carefully to discover where the snake or snakes have gotten to and, having found each of them, once more keeping track of them as well as one can and for as long as one can, till the next time asleep or distracted.

    It seems inevitable that sooner or later the snakes will not be noticed, even the bright red and white one, and will bite. The only hope is that these "natural" setting projects, taking up only part of our time, can be left behind for awhile as we go about the rest of our activities.

    1/29/12 - Title: "Way Too Many Butts to Clean Up!"

    I am newly hired in some custodial capacity, just beginning work here, and am learning the ropes in a big old-fashioned movie or theater (plays) auditorium. Rows of seats, ampitheater (amphitheater) style, descend toward the front. The lighting is not bright, but also not so dim that I cannot see to work. Old carpeting on the floors and matching carpeting on the lower part of the walls, all of which also matches the old fold-down upholdstered (upholstered) rows of seats, is a deep red and black design, mostly deep red, and the material covering all three, floors, lower walls, and seating, is a formerly plush but now old, worn, and comparatively thin felt type fabric.

    A woman familiar with this place and the work here is telling and showing me how it is done. I must use a vacuum cleaner, but mostly without any nozzle on the metal tubing attached to the flexible hose part, because the dirt, ash, debris, and cigarette butts are so thick, several inches thick all around and beneath each seat, as well as where the floor and wall join, that it would just instantly clog up any ordinary carpet cleaning or floor cleaning nozzle attachment that might be used. Indeed, I do not see how the job can ever be finished in a reasonable period of time, since the whole theater or auditorium is messy the same way, with several inches deep of old cigarette butts and other debris, and the vacuum cleaner is just of normal size and efficiency, with no extraordinary sucking capacity or dirt bag.

    I think a couple other women are working in the left part of the auditorium. I am on the right, toward the front, at the bottom of an aisle with a gold colored or brass handrail or banister that runs beside it. The woman showing me the ropes is nearby, between me and the right wall. I am two or three seats away from her but starting my work in the same (front) row as hers.

    I am overwhelmed with the impossibility of the situation. With my best efforts, my vacuum will be full of debris and butts before I have finished around just two or three seats, yet there is the whole rest of the auditorium still to be done.

    I am amazed that the women seem calm about the situation, not in despair or frustration at all, while for me it is just as absurd as in "The Myth of Sisyphus."

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