February, 20101 3 8 13 14 24 27 28
It is nighttime. I am younger, perhaps in my 40s or 50s, and my (actually deceased) dad is in his 70s or 80s. I am at his (and Mom's) ranch (not one I recognize). I have taken on responsibility for a small herd of goats, but they are in a large barn mixed in with a larger herd of (bovine) cattle, still Dad's responsibility. Despite its being late at night, I realize the goats should have gotten to water and decide I must let them out so they can get water right now. Dad is in the barn but does not interfere, though he seems to think this is not the best thing to do now. He does his best, though, to control the cows and bull(s) while I open the big sliding barn door so the goats can get out and go for the water.
However, the cattle are not tethered or corralled inside the barn, and there is little he can do to stop them once the big door has been opened. Some of the cattle rush out along with all the goats. In the process, I can tell that he has gotten outside too, still trying to control or correct a bad situation, but has fallen in the dark and may even have been trampled. In any case, I know he is lying hurt out there in the dark.
Instead of rushing to his assistance, I head back toward the house that adjoins the barn, calling to Mom for a good flashlight and her assistance in finding one.
She dismisses that at first, saying I should get the truck and use its headlights, but then, concerned about what's happening and with Dad maybe seriously hurt out there in the dark, she tries to rush and do something to assist the situation, but quickly develops a severe pain and holds her lower abdomen (and in the dream I confuse this with her having a heart attack, though it's really as if she's had a bad hernia, a sudden problem with a pregnancy, or an intestinal difficulty). In any case, she too is incapacitated, yet she remains cheerful about the situation. She yells encouragement to me, saying something like: "It's up to you now, son!"
I, however, am feeling overwhelmed as I continue searching for a good flashlight or the truck, but am not even sure where the key to it is.
[Dad - This is the older, more mellow Dad who could be critical, domineering, and judgmental, but was also inclined at times to be supportive and patient. A generally good investor. Could be charming. Obsessive compulsive. Self-centered, but at times affectionate with Mom or with his grandkids. An introvert. Had strong emotions but he was more thinker than feeler, rational than emotional. He still saw himself as definitely the one in charge, even when not really able to cope, and he kept active and involved in his ranch till the very last months, when strokes prevented it.
Mom - Competed with Dad for who was in charge. Tends to be more emotional than a thinker, defiant and angry and sarcastic vs. depressed and withdrawing and feeling like a martyr. Quite extroverted. More impulsive or manic than methodical and careful in how she goes about things. She can also be very upbeat, hopeful, life of the party. Though not true so much at the time of the dream setting as now, she drinks way too much but is in denial about it being a problem.]
2/3/10 - Title: "Stalled Out"
It is a rainy day, and I am with others in a vehicle on a small country road; in places it is just one lane. I can't recall who is driving at first, as my mom often has others driving for her, but it is her van. Besides Mom and I, my brother, Allen, is there, along with at least one or two others, maybe more, among my relatives. We come, after previous harrowing driving conditions, to a stretch of road maybe 40-50 feet long that is underwater. We do not want to be stuck there, but are not sure the vehicle can make it through. We decide Allen will attempt to drive us through anyway. He does, but, just 2-3 feet from the end of the water covering the road, the van stalls out. Probably water has gotten into the engine, though we hope it is not that bad. The rest of us get out of the van. This may lighten the load so that it raises enough of the motor out of the water, which is still shallow, maybe a foot or so deep. Also, all except Allen and perhaps Mom, who may be too old to help, will attempt to move the van, rocking it or pushing it, so we can hopefully at least get it on past the stretch of underwater road. This will be a dirty, muddy job. I do not want Mom to attempt it with the rest of us. It does not make sense to me that people are in front of the vehicle when what is needed is to push it in that direction, but, at first at least, that is where we are standing as we try to agree on how best to move the van the last several feet out of the water, with Allen in the driver's seat. (He has experience starting vehicles under similar conditions and is as well resourceful in working on his own used cars and trucks.)
[Mom is the active matriarch of a large extended family and in this likes to be in a general way leading things, but defers a lot to others whose opinions and wishes she usually puts ahead of her own. She tends to be either busy and occupied with various projects, and in this way quite involved with others, or depressed, withdrawn, angry, and/or feeling like a martyr. In loneliness or sadness or obsessing about various concerns, she has trouble sleeping otherwise, and so drinks a lot of alcohol most every evening, until in such a stupor that she is unable to think or feel for several hours and can just stagger to bed. When sober and during the day, she is happy to be the organizer of a number of social activities, in connection with her work for a major non-profit in Waco, a volunteer group there, or her own extended family. She dotes on and is very involved in the lives of her grandkids and great grandkids. She uses money to extend her efforts to control and placate others, but manages her "loans" to several of them badly. Nonetheless, some have come to regard such financial favors as one reason to visit her more or to let her be more involved in their and their kids' lives than they otherwise would be.
Allen is my fourth (of seven) siblings and about eleven years younger than I. He is pretty smart in things mathematical, mechanical, or electrical and works successfully as an electrical engineer for a military contractor. He is the proud, patient, and nurturing papa of two cute kids, aged about 6 and 4, but in his relationship with their mother and his wife he is very passive, to the extent that she badly takes advantage of him in several ways. However, overall he is much happier with his family than when single or divorced from his first wife (who had also mostly been the dominant one between them).
2-3 suggest dawning awareness to transformation. 40-50 may be "amped up" 4 to 5, suggesting manifestation in reality, waiting, and creativity.
Of course, the dream as a whole may be seen in part as about needing to go through feelings and intuitive or unconscious material in the way of my path forward. Getting through and out of this mess may be a dirty job! I do have in Allen a useful shadow for this endeavor. However, it likely is problematic that I am (the various parts of me are) attempting to go forward in my mom's vehicle rather than my own. The situation and setting are gloomy and our proceeding in her vehicle, i.e. using her drive or anima energy, is stalled out and seems likely to remain so as long as we depend on her as the "model" for our moving ahead. In general, her anima example seems a negative one, showing ways of being that are better avoided than emulated.]
2/8/10 - Title: "Black Magic"
The setting is a brightly moonlit night and an old two-story house out in a rural area. I am talking with a woman there, on the second floor and in semi-darkness, who knows the score here, who may be the wife of the head of the house. She is warning me, imploring me, insisting that I must leave at once. I understand or sense or have known already that the head of the house, a man of great personal power, is here in this place also and that somehow he is controlling many others who must do his bidding and are coming, like Black zombies, here tonight.
I must leave, she pleads, even harshly ordering me away, right away. If I stay longer, she says, it will be too late, and I shall be killed in some awful way. He (by whom she means the head of the house) will not stand for any interference and will kill me if I remain.
But I hesitate, wanting to understand what is happening on this night, and not wanting to be banished from my own house.
"GET OUT!" she yells. "Go hunt them (the zombies) down singly on the back roads, or just get away and go somewhere else, or go kill some of them, running them down with your car, but you must go now!"
And so, both angry and frightened, wanting but fearing to confront the head of the house about what is going on, but impelled by her urgent warnings, I leave, intending to race my car over the back roads and give chase to and even run over any of the zombies I see.
I wonder if, in the light of day tomorrow, the woman, the powerful man of the house, and I shall pretend this night's dark doings never happened, yet I shall know all the while that he controls the lives of a sleeping multitude. They must do his bidding and are now no better than zombies under his absolute will.
[When I was three, I was awake in the backseat of our family car, Dad driving and Mom next to him in the front seat, on a two-lane country road and on a rainy night, when suddenly a black man was in front of our car. At once then we hit him. He tumbled over the car and lay a little behind it after we had come to a stop. He had not even screamed but was now dead. We all got out and looked at him, in the vehicle lights or a flashlight, I can't remember which.
In various meditation or esoteric disciplines, much is made of our being actually asleep and that the intention in life is to truly wake up.
I do not recognize the head of the house (my father, another conception of my HP?) or the woman in the dream, but assume she is there to show right feeling. I do not know what else the dream means.]
2/13/10 - Title: "Volcanic Changes"
A vivid, living color dream in which I am an observer in an indoor place of great change, peopled by scores or hundreds of men and women of great individuality, self-possession, and awareness. They move about this mall-like region quietly, in confidence, savoring the sights. They are mostly tall and stately, well proportioned. I recall none of them being obese or emaciated. In their faces were evidenced great depths of experience, insight, and wisdom. A few others are remarkable for their animal-like features, as though they are blends of people and boars, bears, gorillas, etc.
There was also a later scene in which, far from being merely an observer - though partly I also see a giant movie - I am a participant in some of the immense change here. A vast, 3-D movie screen covers most of one wall, and on it are vast upheavals, not of earth but of living forms undergoing huge transitions. These are without skin and at times look like great fiery eruptions moving as yellow-orange-red flesh, like the shapes of swimming amoebae, but much faster.
Then the changes are occurring in me, so fast and intense they are making me feel incandescent. I wonder if it will matter, but realize I forgot to put on my safety headgear before this change trip.
In another scene, there is a special, absolutely beautiful infant girl, at first asleep on a sofa, then in my arms. She is distressed at first while I am holding her, but then seems content.
In a short scene, my mother appears and sees the changes occurring here. They alarm her. She is fearful, yet respectful and appreciative, even in awe over them, sort of wishing she were taking part in them as well, but afraid of how they might affect her. As it turns out, she is just an anxious observer here.
[Mom is insecure, often depressed, creative, plays favorites, an alcoholic, often lonely, tries to control others in her family with money, sees herself as a martyr, yet she is also active in volunteer activities through which she has many acquaintances, and she is a facilitator of several neat social engagements in both her community and extended family. She continues, at age 87, to teach aerobics, and in this has a loyal bunch of students who think she's an excellent and engaging teacher. I think she may be mildly manic-depressive, for which she "self-medicates" with coffee and a rush of activities vs. with food and alcohol.
I do not know the little girl in reality.]
2/14/10 - My friend, Janet, took a look at my 2/8 "Black Magic" dream and commented on it. She said: 1. Though it may feel sinister, it has a healthy message; 2. It appears to reflect a combination of guilt and concern over my numerous cancer recurrences; 3. There is a shadow part of me that holds a lot of power over me; 4. Yet my anima is saying there is no reason for it to have that kind of control over me but, instead, I ought to get conscious, and then be willing to feel real emotions, such as anger, depression, joy, etc.; 5. And, in fact, I listen to this anima's message; 6. The combination of Alanon, dream work, and meditation, not to mention engagement with external reality in general, is having a positive effect, so that there is less shadow control and more consciousness of both intuitional and emotional material; 7. The latter, though uncomfortable at times, is in the end beneficial; 8. There are two stories, or dawning awareness, to this self (two-story house); 9. There is an anima there to show me right feeling, and she is saying not to stay in this part of the self, for there is a shadow who has a lot of power and control over other parts of me, that then get out of feeling - and zombies are, Janet thinks, about being numb to feelings - so, in any event, this is not a place to stay. 10. Since I have an association of my father killing someone accidentally, it might even be that this is saying don't stay in that place where I blame myself for something that was not even my fault; 11. It might even have to do with the cancer, that this anima is telling me not to blame myself for that and to get out of that blaming part of myself. 12. My anima is saying I shall face an ego death if I stay where I am; 13. I am hesitant to leave, though, because I think this is my way of being me, but she doesn't think so; 14. Since I listen to the anima and get out, I can go on to kill off the parts of myself that are not emotionally (or otherwise) present, aware; 15. I wonder if this shadow is real, but I know that there are lots of unconscious people around, unconscious because their shadow is controlling them, not letting them express who they really are; 16. The dream is pointing out that I tend to go to a place where I blame myself for things that are not my fault, where I am not free to be myself, due to this shadow's influence.
Then, today, my dream group discussed, among others, my "Volcanic Changes" dream from yesterday. Highlights:
2/24/10 - Title: "?"
(Little remembered except...) I am involved in a lot of "fisticuffs" fighting with at least one man, and probably several. It seems the fighting is extreme, to the point that at least one man becomes unconscious and badly injured.
[All I can think of about this is that the ego is having violent disagreements with one or more shadows (masculine energy aspects of myself) and that one or more of my inner characters winds up being unconscious, i.e. not "awake" or enlightened.]
2/27/10 - Title: "The Game Preserve"
Scene 1 - I am in a hot, dry area (I think in Africa) and am just outside but on the edge of a large game preserve or wildlife sanctuary. There are electrified fences or large, high barriers, so admittance is limited. Inside, I see exotic animals, some very close to an entrance near which I am standing. There is inside the preserve also a stream or river close at hand. Another man, tall and fit, younger than I am and very quiet, not saying anything, is nearby outside the barrier. He is intently watching the wildlife.
Scene 2 - I have paid the not small fee, been told the safety precautions, have officially accepted that there is risk, have agreed that I cannot hold the folks in charge responsible, and have gained admittance to the preserve. I am now inside, quite close to the stream. Its water is clear yet swift. Many animals are swept toward me from the left and then on by toward my right as they calmly swim or float in this river. These include elephants, giant snakes, and water buffalo or wildebeest. I understand that those in pairs will soon be copulating and see two of the great serpents entwined and a couple elephants playing or flirting near each other as they float by. Everything is seen with such close-up clarity it is at once beautiful and like good nature photography.
Scene 3 - I'm still in the preserve and see another large younger man near a giant snake. Somehow the snake does not react, but the man is thumping its big venomous head repeatedly with his hand or fingers, as though teasing it or deliberately egging it on. I realize he is getting it so angry the it will strike at the next person who gets near. I call out to him that he should stop playing with the snake that way. He replies mildly that he is not playing, that this is his work.
Scene 4 - I am inside the preserve and see the tall man from Scene 1 again. We introduce ourselves, but I am not sure I got or can remember his three-part name. I ask him to write it for me. Instead, he spells it, but I do not have pen and paper immediately handy and forget it again before I can write it down. We remark on a mutual interest in wildlife and preserves and that we have seen each other at such places in the past. I tell him I enjoy blockbuster movies too and we might go see one together sometime. He does not seem interested in this.
[Am not getting much from this so far. However, I do note the shadow or masculine energy characters who seem large and younger (Junger?) than I. I would guess the difference in size suggests they have more self-confidence and hence less self-doubt than I do.
The three-part name may indicate a transformation process.
The barrier, high entrance, and costly admission suggest this area is rather exclusive, that one must pay one's dues (perhaps with inner growth) to get in here.
The shadow character thumping the big poisonous snake's head, the snake's for some reason restraining itself (or being restrained) from striking right away, but then being angry and primed to lash out at the next person who comes by, likely at least indicates an issue I have over the holding in vs. expressing of anger or rage. From the dream, clearly this anger management deal is an issue I am to work on.
In the past, snakes for me in dreams have to do with the suppression or repression of emotions vs. genuinely feeling and then naturally, spontaneously expressing them.
Snakes, I think, can also be about knowledge, medical issues or healing, especially the medical profession symbol, the caduceus, or about the lower chakras, sexuality, and the presence, release, or expression of the coiled Kundalini energy.
The swift, clear stream or river bringing several animals from the left calls to mind unconscious, intuitional, or emotional content that is being brought into awareness. The imminent sexual unions among some of these creatures suggests there may be increased integration before long.
An interest in movies, which apparently is not shared with one of my shadows, suggests getting the picture or better perspective.
Water buffalo are animals that are more or less at home in the water and so may represent natural instincts as opposed to repressed or suppressed ones, for which the emotional or intuitional material of the unconscious remains more out of awareness.
Elephants, I believe, are symbols of power, spirituality, instinctive energy, family feeling, nurturing, and also likely of good memory for the things that matter.
Wildebeest may just be my inner wild beasts, yet they are fiercely protective herd creatures who annually go on long migrations or journeys across perilous African landscapes which may have either droughts or floods and many predators.
It seems probable the game preserve theme and title are significant, though I do not know just how. What game is being preserved? The game of life? Something else? Is it more about the untamed inner aspects that are given sanctuary? I have not figured it out.]
2/28/10 - At dream group today we discussed "The Game Preserve" dream. Highlights: