3/11/09 - Over the past several weeks, Janet and I have been conferring by e-mail on a couple of her recent dreams and then on a number of mine, including "Time to Really Buckle Down," Bucket List," and "Oh God! Please, God, Help Me, God." Here are some of the combined highlights of these dreams, from both my analyses plus Janet's:
- In the "Time to Really Buckle Down" dream, I am definitely in a place of learning, with lots of people, which could mean with several parts of myself. Undergrad could represent that I am beginning my course of study
in a field, or it could be under the gradient, which in turn might mean
not yet inclined to do something. There's something about undergrad
that feels like its a play on words, but we are not exactly sure what.
- This learning is taking place on my own, that is, with nobody else around who is also involved in it (about which Janet adds, "Boy can I relate to that!").
- There are 5 major courses. I could go this way, I could go
that way, I could go....etc. Five is also creativity. It is also
- When I actually go and learn the material, I am way ahead of
others. Also, 30, my approximate age in the "Buckle Down" dream, is radiance or transformation "amped up." And I do this even when among tons of others trying to
learn the same material.
- I have not been applying myself, i.e have not been really trying or have not been putting in applications for something. I have not only not been regularly attending the classes but also have not reading the material regularly.
- I wind up in the front row of a sociology or anthropology class. Sociology is about the study of groups. Anthropology is the science that deals with the origins, physical and cultural
development, biological characteristics, plus the social customs and
beliefs of humankind.
- The professor's description also again emphasizes the number 5. Her age is 40-50. 40 is "amped up" manifestation in reality. It is also the age when I met Frances, and we were married less than a year later. In addition, it is the age when I began to take investing seriously. And 40's significance includes that it is a time of beginning again, but with a
different understanding because of the work I have already done. 50 is
transformation (as well as creativity and waiting) "amped up." Weight is about how much importance I put on something and is also "wait," thus emphasizing the significance of the repeated 5, which can mean waiting. The professor's weight, mistyped first as weights, which is also "waits," is 125 pounds. Janet wonders what that is
in English money. 125 is also the cube of 5, and so greatly emphasizes the significance of 5 again. This could mean dawning awareness of creativity or
waiting. The professor's light gray or white hair represents wisdom. Certainly a
positive anima: attractive, intelligent, and sensitive.
- She is 4-5 feet away. 4 is manifestation in reality. 5 is more stress on creativity and waiting. Feet are about the stance I take, in this case one not at all far from that of the professor/anima. By coincidence, through synchronicity, or whatever, as it turned out, a few days after having that dream, I was in a meditation retreat and wound up having a position there in the front row of meditators, my pad only a few feet in front of the experienced meditator/teacher, in a relative stance quite similar to that in the dream with the anthropology or sociology professor.
- But when she addresses questions to me, I do not understand her. I think the problem is physical, a hearing problem, as is the case with my nephew, Joel. But even in his case the problem isn't that
he's deaf. It is that there is nobody around who can speak the
language, and transform one into the other. It is thus one of
interpretation. This also suggests the language the anima is using is that of dreams or of intuition and feelings, but I am just not getting that and need an interpreter to assist with it.
- Although very patient, eventually the anima gives up trying to communicate with the ego. Instead, she decides to teach other parts of me. Later, I go to another type class and am not getting the learning there either.
- The big commercial jet liner setting of that next class suggests it is one of business and moves quickly, or
one of persuasion maybe.
- So my ego knows it is way behind my feelings and shadow (other
parts of myself in the class) If the ego really applies itself,
I can see what's going on. If not, my ego won't get the benefit
of learning. But I decide to apply myself, which is cool.
- Bottom Line: My ego may not get the learning, but if I trust my
feelings they will tell me what I need to know. I have a
really wise anima. It's not that there's something physically or mentally wrong
with me (such as that I am not smart enough, I cannot hear, etc), but that my ego has not been doing the work to get it. If I listen to
my feelings and start really attending to them (as in attending class better), I shall get it. Janet thinks it is really that simple. I need to trust my feelings and pay attention to them.
- 5 is also an important symbol for me. In my Ritalin-oxygen-carbon dioxide "trips" in CA, in the 1960s, 5 came up powerfully as a visual symbol (and 5 is still a strong organizing "force" for me that all else sort of revolves around) that I saw as dots, 4 around in a square with the fifth in the center, as with the 5's appearance when rolling dice. Later, a mantra I used in meditation for several years focused on 5 names for inner realm regions, each supposed to be a higher spiritual plane. Now I am compulsive about 5, more or less automatically fitting just about everything into groupings of 5: large or small time durations, big or little sets of activities, the number times I comb through my hair, brush my teeth, etc., ad infinitum...
- Lots of people make a big deal about age 50 with parties. I had three, one big one by family, one by folks at work, and another by friends. And I gave Fran her 50th birthday bash within the past year. I have helped organize 50th birthday bashes for most of my siblings, the last one this past Labor Day Weekend.
- It is also the first significant milestone clearly, for almost everyone, beyond the halfway point (in life), so perhaps indicates more awareness of mortality. (And my younger brother, Ralph, had died 2-3 years before my 50th.)
- Next, in the "Bucket List" dream, this is partly about in between views (interviews). I want to get a huge learning that's been stored up.
- There is the part of me, whom I am more conscious of but who is still a shadow, who is generally managing things. Then there is also a younger shadow, whom I am less conscious of, that might become my immediate boss. But the shadows really want someone who knows learning. I have experience learning, which occurred when I putting myself through higher learning. I may not have been
brilliant, but I loved it and so I did not require a lot of pay. And when I worked at a place that stored up learning, I created
a union within yourself. What came out of that experience was that I had a way to voice
grievances and gain a bit of energy in the process.
- I am saying I deserve to get this stored learning because I love doing it, not just to get a payoff. And I am saying this new boss, if I were to get this learning, might not
actually love learning the way the ego does. The part of me that is a general manager, i.e. giving me an in between view, acknowledges I had a point, but my ego was not the one who needs the learning (so I did not get the job).
- In the second scene of that dream, it is apparent this is about times (not infrequent) when I am depressed.
- It is also a period of in between views, in this case, successful ones. The job entails learning all aspects of what's going on. Instead of doing what's routine, I start with getting grounded and work my way up. The place I would occupy is huge. The role is about
serving the parts of me involved in significant events. This role gives me the gift of, or involvement in, things leaving or departing as well as in selling my persona (clothes marketing). There is also something about whatever is temporary departing (rental departments). Cake departments too, and cake marks anniversaries, cycles, so that also departs. There are giant hot food kitchens and lines. Hot can be something that is like a hot topic, so there's
transformation with respect to nurturance and lines.
- There are vast grocery supermarket type accumulations of
foodstuffs, etc. Thus, in general, there is a huge market for different kinds of nurturance. My job here is to offer things that cost a lot that are packaged together.
- Given the attention to detail, these rich people (mature people)
keep coming back.
- Weddings are about a death of one sort or another. The initials, CB, could stand for "See Be," and Janet speculates this relates to something having to die. But with blossom in that phrase it is like something dies, but
something is reborn. And because I understand that, I have the
potential to satisfy the mature parts of my, down to fine
- There is some business about working with the unconscious (behind-the
scenes), and I make people feel like things are so individualized they are ready to pay the price they need to. I am used to doing this personal work even though I am still learning.
- Then, in the final scene of that dream, I am working on stuff related to a death, but the
death stuff is departing. I show different ways to mark the
fact that this having to deal with the death of stuff is leaving. And
there is nurturance that is prepared.
- There is in that scene a shadow anima who has trouble moving. This is a part of me also from times when I am or was depressed. She takes nurturance for those whom she works for, obviously not
herself. This anima has suffered for a lifetime.
- But this woman gets nurturance when she can, even if she has to steal
- There is a ton of nurturance available. And grapes are about fertility. They can also be gripes. Red is anger or passion. Janet suspects this is about eating or enjoying my passion, strong positive feelings for certain things.
- I realize that the one employing her is not giving her enough to
feed her passion.
- The bit about the hot overcooked sausage is phallic and
maybe has to do with sex and being ready to have sex.
- My ego is a better employer than my shadow, and so is willing
to give her some nurturance that she needs. But my shadow who manages me generally is then also supportive of my anima,
who has suffered a lot over time, in the decision to give her some nurturance.
- My ego is deeply moved with positive and passionate feeling that he was able to relieve the anima's suffering some by providing her greatly needed nurturance. He is also relieved that he and his shadow are on the same page.
- Janet does not see this dream as more of the same. She believes the first piece or scene is saying, while I want to run or create or master a store of knowledge, that is not where I am going
to be happy. She feels that idea is something that had been handed to me, that I am supposed to do, but might not be the thing that makes me happy. The rest of the dream is telling me what will make me happy, i.e. going where my passion is. Dealing with the unconscious is one such activity in which I have a passionate investment. She suggests being guided by what I really like, "If it feels
good, do it." Her impression is there is nothing wrong with doing things that feel good
to me. There is all this nurturance (from doing things I really enjoy, that feed me in that way) available, and I just need to be
willing to go to it, and to not worry about whether I look like I know more than other people. It really is about where my heart is,
not the number of facts I can recite. If I do that, everyone
wins. That is the essence of what she sees in this dream.
- Further, more general comments of Janet's in response to this dream or my questions about it included that she does not feel I am defensive, has never experienced me that way. She feels that raising questions or disagreeing with an interpretation is not
necessarily defensive. She can be off, and when I read things I write in response she can see where that is.
- She said she has the same difficulties sorting out what's right about dreams of others or her own. She used to be
so certain, in her twenties, but lost all that, so now things are a bit murkier for her as well. So her comments are only her opinions, from the dreams, my comments on them, or my questions.
- She does think I need to have the balls to simply be me, not what she or Sonya or my mom, or my deceased dad or Christine or society or anybody else thinks, thought, or says I ought to be. If that means
meditating, walking in the woods, or whatever, so be it.
- They sound to her like great
ideas, that I had suggested as activities I might like to do (but that were not looked on as particularly productive or useful or valued by someone else) and which I have recapitulated here: going to good movies; reading literature; taking walks alone or with Puff; researching value stocks; getting extra rest; eating out (alone or with others) at favorite restaurants; going on interesting, desired trips and vacations (again, alone or with Fran or others); writing, whether just for the heck of it or for others to read; following and engaging with the lives of my nephews and nieces; playing with our dog; etc.
- She adds that if I do those things that are
truly me, there will be a different kind of contribution that
emerges, that no one can know, but she guarantees it will be there. But
it won't feel like a chore, or suffering, it will feel like joy,
because it is a match for me.
- And then I won't need to be focused on
getting this hit of lightning to understand or know something, because
I will be in synch with myself, which I shall know. That, she thinks, is the
essence of what the "Bucket List" dream is pointing to. There's no right or wrong
in how to live a life, as long as one does not hurt other people
(that's her emphatic belief), and when she says "hurt," she does not mean that if someone
doesn't like it that is a problem. She really means hurting, being nasty,
that kind of stuff.
- To her, that is what dream work is all about, to bring a person to her or his own fullness, or holistic integrity, and in doing so assure a person's own bliss, what is really HER or HIM, not Janet's or anyone else's but their own, my own. And we all benefit if I can do that, because I would then be setting an
example which would help Janet and others get there too.
- She remembers this friend in college saying while a group of people were
walking about that she "liked things." That was very "uncool" when we
were in college, because we were into non-material things, helping the
world, etc. But Janet loved that she just came out and said that, and so she remembers it to this day. She said what none of us would
admit. To her, that was really great.
- When I ask myself what I want to
do with the rest of the time I have on this earth, Janet says, she actually thinks
I shall know. She would go do that.
- They sound wonderful to her, the things I have already listed. When she was in
Austin and had her last dog, Homer, she says she spent a lot of time doing some of the things
I had written about. And she had loved it!
- And if I can do that, then maybe I can help her get there. She says she knows she is not quite there yet herself. But she had seen my dream and knows
I can get there.
- Janet thinks I expect some huge major learning, but in fact I really
do not need it. My shadow is not interested in hiring me for that. I already know the things that I enjoy, and that's all I need. She believes I think there's some deep dark secret I am supposed to learn about, but in fact all I need to know is what occupations and pastimes I enjoy and then give
myself permission to do those things.
- She also thinks, when a person comes from a dysfunctional family, he or she thinks, "If only
I did 'X,' someone would surely love me or not yell or whatever." So
that gets carried on, where a person thinks he or she is supposed to do all these
things. But if a people instead follow their hearts, that is the whole reason to hire them, that they have heart! And that is the main message of that dream scene about the bookstore, that a person would be a good employee candidate if he or she would really love what the person would be doing in a particular setting. So, one does not need to learn anything new. Just follow your heart, your feelings, what you know you love doing and so truly enjoy. That's it! If you reflect on it, you
already know what that is.
- Re the "Oh God! Please, God, Help Me, God" dream, in which a male lion is lying on top of me, looking me in the eyes, and holding my left forearm roughly in its jaws, Janet feels there may be some validity to my association between the lion and Fran, since she had been wearing a T-shirt with a male lion on the front. Fran has much talent, is keenly into being involved with things she enjoys, loves, and has fun doing, is spontaneous, has a good sense of humor, and shows a lot of self-confidence, yet she also tends toward trying to dominate our relationship in a critical, sarcastic, or power-trip way.
- It is Janet's view, though, that all these traits are like gifts my Frances anima has to offer me and might be seen in a favorable light as things I would feel better having in greater abundance. Even Fran's tendency to dominate would be a good complement, an offsetting quality, for me to acquire in some measure, since now I tend too much to be the nice, kind, relatively passive and retiring recipient of this sort of behavior. Being more an assertive dissenter would help to restore the balance between us. And focusing on and then doing more of what I enjoy is also just what the doctor would have ordered for me.
- Janet points out that lions may be seen in dreams as representing some or all of these qualities: power; kingship; male authority, possibly the father; guardians of the sacred; frustration and depression (among people who have given up the expression or fulfillment of their wild, excessive, demanding, or outlandish desires); a waking situation/relationship in which there is a need to exert more power or responsibility, or in which one is feeling dominated or overpowered; and the sun or the horizon.
- I am in this dream in a place of entrance (or in trance) or of long transition (a long hallway) and, on my back, definitely in a submissive position with respect to authority, etc. Janet suggests I consider the lion on me as like my relationship with an abusive father, which certainly resonates for me.
- It is, she said, as if things relating to my father have made it so I can barely move, grow, be, etc. With my right arm free, I do have a conscious way of taking action so I can hit the right transition (right wall) to distract the part of me that would not let me move.
- Nonetheless, if I make any movements toward helping myself, that part of me starts toying with me. The situation becomes terrifying and may result in ego death.
- The looking into the lion's eyes and vice versa is like the dominant part of me, still reenacting the old relationship with my father, intimidating the ego. But this could also mean a window is there into the soul.
- This monster or demon aspect of my inner self is toying or playing with my ego self as if the later were prey. But Janet says her association here is to pray-ing, playing with the notion of praying perhaps.
- This part of me could cause my ego death at any moment but instead is just playing with me.
- Again I would try to find escape by using my right arm, but the lion part keeps me from moving, with anger or frustration or anxiety reactions inside me, especially in the chest, but also in other parts of my body, indications of how the intimidating, bullying inner self part is controlling me, keeping me from moving.
- This bullying inner part at any moment could crush my voice, my courage, or my ego.
- Given that I don't know what else to do, I look to my higher power.
- Janet thinks the key to all this has to do with father stuff.
That is still controlling me and preventing me from going through
the transition I need to go through. She would look at where I feel
anger and fear. That is the father stuff that is still controlling me.
- A little later, Janet sent a new e-mail in which she said she thought we have had a common issue that maybe she had just broken through. She had a fear that the last piece to her becoming whole was getting angry. The fear of that result made her hesitant to go after any work.
(She had watched a friend do that and did not want to replicate some of that stuff.) But she went to the original dream, in which she had gotten that idea, and it was very
different from what she had remembered. And so that totally changed the way
she sees things. She said she suspects I am similarly afraid that if you go after what I want, I would either be
replicating something my father did, or he in some way taught me
that I am selfish
if I do things that make me happy, something of the sort.
- She speculated that in the dream with the lion I could simply make that lion impotent, so
that I could just
walk away. She thinks that is what I need to do, tell the lion he is
imaginary, that he provides me with
false feelings, emotions that are not real, and that I am not going to pay attention
to them any more!
- Meanwhile, before getting that last advice from Janet, I was having trouble remembering how it felt to have the lion on top of me and where I felt the anger/fear. But I tried it out on the floor with eyes closed and heavy pillows on top, to see if I could get any recollections and ideas.
- This took me back to a time when Dr. Harold Pearl, who administered the Ritalin-oxygen-carbon dioxide trips in the late 1960s, in CA, was playing the part of my father and lying on me, looking into my eyes with a neutral expression and I into his, but, under the influence of the chemicals, it was as though he became my father, and I invested his face and eyes with a malicious, cruel or sadistic, smug assurance of his dominance, from which I at first felt powerless, but then I had yelled in this incoherent scream of intense rage and had tried with all my might bodily and with my arms to hurl him off, but was held back from this by the other men there, so that, instead, it was as though I would turn to energy, my whole body becoming a rocket of hate streaking across the universe toward that hated face as it was receding, yet with me following just as fast, in fact going faster and faster into speed of light rage.
- The trips led to a tremendous ventilation of the fear and anger, but also to a sense that there was still yet a huge amount of more pent up fear and hatred inside me, as though I could have left this world of sanity and gone off forever after that receding hated face, never to return, except that, from the left, I heard some voice (inside, that is, not a "real" voice) which said: "STOP - Or you'll never come back." And instantly I did stop, my "trip" of racing rage ceased, that is, and things returned to normal. But after those four highly intense Ritalin-oxygen-carbon dioxide "trips," I was too afraid to try them again.
- Am still not certain where in the body the anger and fear were concentrated, but can make a guess that feels right: partly in my face that felt frozen, even numb, with fear, partly in my throat, where I am holding back that kind of "insane" scream, partly in my lower abdomen, partly in my limbs, that want to fight but I fear to, lest it be my last moment, and mostly in my chest, as though I simply cannot get enough air, as though I would need a super lungful to shout as loud as I feel I must and to attempt to throw the lion off. There is definitely more fear than rage in the lion dream situation.
- During the "trip" in CA, when Dr. Pearl assumed the part of my father and lay on top of me, there also was more fear at first, the rage taking over after I got into the trip more.
- My cry for help to a higher power in this dream was as if involuntary, uttered without having thought it first, just suddenly and spontaneously yelled in a moment of absolute hopelessness.
3/14/09 - Title: "You've Got (Janet) Mail"
I was visiting my Mom and on her computer checked my e-mail messages. I was very pleased to see I had one from Janet. Although I had not yet opened it, I was optimistic that it would include a dream of hers that I might help interpret.
Title: "The Ego is Left Out in the Cold"
A not so well dressed younger woman (kind of chubby and with vulgarly cheap clothes showing too much of her various curves) has come over to Fran's and my place for a visit. She is in our front room (not our real place but a somewhat larger one than ours that is split-level and with 2-3 floors).
Fran, after letting her in, did not introduce us. She also had not told me this young lady would be coming by. Fran is now momentarily in another part of the house, leaving the young woman alone with me in the main living room area. So I introduce myself. When I do, I do not catch her name, which she sort of mumbles in a mildly rude way, as though she does not care about meeting me, dismissively looking away toward where Fran must be instead. I ask her again for her name, apologizing for not getting it at first. She tells me again but only a bit more loudly. (I've forgotten it. It might have been Eva or Rosa. I am not sure. It did strike me as a short Latin American name and I assumed the woman was Hispanic.) Then Fran returned, and the two of them soon were in a very engaged, animated chat, but not talking with or interested in me at all. I got the point that they did not care whether I was there, in fact that they had a prior well developed relationship to which they were quite committed, but that I was just in the way, odd person out. I wished Fran's and my marriage were as interactive as this friendship between Fran and the young woman, compared to which our relationship is instead often at cross purposes and relatively shallow. I resented that Fran would be as involved as this with others even when they would come for visits and I was there, effectively excluding me.
The rest of the dream scene was mostly forgotten except that it seemed a repeat of the first part, with yet another young woman's visit, this person also seemingly in Fran's orbit, stopping by, very involved with Fran (almost as if she and Fran were in a Lesbian relationship), and meanwhile rudely disdainful of interactions with me. I felt rejected, frustrated, jealous, and angry to be treated this way, especially in my own house.
Title: "Out of Place Sitting/Setting"
I had arrived alone at a formal dinner party one evening. Formal place settings were set out at a long narrow table. I had gone to sit down at a place at the table next to or across from several other men already sitting there. Since the formal setting included fancy red cloth napkins in artistically tied designs (like flowers in bloom) where the full plates of food would need to go once we were served, I moved a lot of the extra decorations at mine out of the way by putting them on top of the setting across from me. I then began politely finding out who were sitting next to me or cater-cornered from me, both on my left, the places to the right and exactly across from me still vacant, though also having these elaborate red place settings.
As I was finishing my polite introductions, I realized this table gathering was for a business dinner organized by my brother, Horace, not yet here, but that I had put my extra setting decorations at the place where he would likely be sitting. These people were all business professionals in formal business suits. One of the men I had introduced myself to was the guest speaker who would be talking about the current state of the economy. I got up and began moving my extra place setting decorations off of what likely were Horace's and apologized to the men nearby for messing up his place setting. I tried to get things at Horace's place back just as they had been but could not get them just right. I explained I had not realized this was an exclusive dinner party table but that I would get out of their way.
By now realizing, however, that I was related to Horace, the two men I had introduced myself to were making light of the incident and acting very welcoming, encouraging me to stay for their dinner meeting. But I was still feeling out of place and that, even if polite about it, Horace, when he got there, would not want me there for his exclusive business meeting. I was getting ready to shift over to another table, but feeling kind of left out. I also was not dressed nearly as well as the others and so, in that way too, felt out of place to be at the businessmen's professional dinner meeting.
3/16/09 - Title: "Can't Stop the Gas Leak"
(Two separate dreams in each of which) I am fiddling frantically with a tiny copper-colored complex natural gas apparatus that is leaking. If I press on it in precisely the right way, the gas leaking stops, but this "fix" is not permanent. It depends on my keeping my left hand or a left hand finger on it just so. If I try to leave to go get a tool or tape or help, the leaking resumes with a hissing and a tell-tale odor of natural gas.* I realize there must be a cut-off valve but not where it is. At any moment, the gas accumulation could get to be enough that I would pass out or that, lit by a pilot light perhaps, it might explode.
After each nightmare, I wake up thinking (naively) that I know what the dream means, but then all I recall of this "solution" is that there is a cut-off valve in the house and that, once it is turned, I have time to get help, perhaps from a professional handyman.
*I know that natural gas is odorless except that, for home use and safety reasons, it is mixed with a little of another gas that one can easily smell when it is leaking. This dream gas has that characteristic odor.
Title: "Big Cleanup Needed After Stepping in Doo-doo!"
I have stepped in some bright brown, almost orange, reddish brown, or copper colored shit, human feces, I believe, and from the bottom of my shoe some of it has also been transferred to the carpet. I am concerned about cleaning it up, but after careful efforts I notice there is still some more that I had missed, tracked onto the carpet in another place. Meanwhile, even where I had wiped it up already, there is some disgusting residual fecal material and the shitty smell left. The carpet will require a more thorough and deeper washing or spot or steam cleaning to really be free of the crap I have tracked in, and my soiled shoe also will have to be more thoroughly scrubbed and washed.
Title: "No Escape from the Swamp and Its Serpents' Strikes"
I am on a wide bed that is like a floating island. But it is slowly sinking into a swamp where there are many poisonous snakes. Some of the reptiles are active and coming into the area right below the edge of the bed. It is only a matter of time before the snakes either slither up onto the bed with me or the bed itself settles down into and under the surface of the swamp. Either way, I shall have to deal with the serpents. There is no apparent way to escape. The snakes must surely kill me. I do not have much time left.
3/23/09 - Title: "Too Much Perspective for Me - Almost Lose My Anima"
I am in a high building, at least 16 or 60 stories up, in a narrow, short hallway with at least two, probably three, other people in this cramped hall space. We are employees here. I am the new guy being shown around. To my left at the end of this tiny hall (the entire hall only about 3 x 5 feet) is a glass door which is contoured, curved and closer to us at the top and less curved, almost flat but a little farther out from us at the bottom, conforming with the shape of the top of the building, narrowest at the very top, just a bit above us. Janet, one of the 3-4 of us, is standing next to the door. Another person (man or woman?) is leading my tour/orientation, but the other(s) besides me are helping. They all have me look out the door. I am next to Janet as I see how high we are, so high the details on the ground far below are obscure. One can see off over a vast horizontal distance. The sky is partially cloudy, partially clear. The view is grand, very interesting, and yet, immediately on seeing that we are so high, with only a thin layer of glass in the door between us and a great fall, I have an anxiety attack with vertigo so badly I fall down. My hall (fall) somehow causes the door to open and pushes Janet out or gives no room for her. She winds up on the outside, clinging desperately with only her fingertips to the top of the outside of the again closed door, as the high wind out there is buffeting her and blowing her hair around. She is terrified but somehow keeps her hold till I am maneuvered by the other(s) so there is a bit more room in the hall and Janet can be helped back in. I am still suffering such fear and vertigo just before waking up I can not move of my own volition.
3/27/09 - Below are highlights of the interpretations of several of my recent or not long past dreams. They include analyses from Janet, my own, as well as suggested meanings from an online dream forum.
The first dream interpreted was "Dawning Awareness and Greenhouse Aggression," a dream from 2/18/09.
- There was in this dream obviously dawning awareness of aggression. Aspects of the self want to kill off my aggression and cause an ego death. There may be something there about going inward ("have it in for" suggesting not just the obvious slang meaning but perhaps also a reflection on the inner meaning or presence of other dream aspects).
- One of the shadows has no self (homeless).
- One shadow has aggression and is letting it out, but nobody gets the effects of it (he misses those he shoots at).
- A greenhouse is used to help plants grow where it is cold. So, where the climate or environment is not warm is where the shadow
is letting out steam for growth to occur.
- Glass can be a symbol of openness or transparency. So even though there
is this aggression being expressed, my shadow still maintains its
transparency and its openness to the unconscious (the shadow fails to shatter the greenhouse glass).
Another dream from 2/28/09 was "Dawning Awareness and Going For (Not) What Really Turns You On." Analysis highlights:
- There are two animas, and so there is dawning awareness about a part of me that is there
to show me right feeling by example or counter-example. They are totally
focused on feelings. Both animas are passionate for me.
- They have no persona (are nude). Thus, what you see is what you get, so to speak. So
I cannot help but observe these feelings.
- Masturbation is another way of saying narcissistic, only
in the spiritual realm, since sexuality in a dream is representative
of integration. But it is as though the narcissistic anima is not given any time off. This anima invites me (the ego) to assist her with having an orgasm, and I go over to help her. Thus, the ego is going to help change the focus.
- While I am willing to help this anima, there is a more attractive
woman (showing me right feeling) whom I can see through the
window, and thus I get perspective (or, as dream member Christine would have said, I get it intellectually without necessarily understanding and feeling it emotionally).
- Given how attractive she is, totally for my benefit, I am really excited to integrate with this anima.
- I am getting ready to let the more narcissistic anima off the hook, so to speak, but regretting that I am not to be then integrating with the other, more mature anima.
- Janet believed that in order for me to actually "make love" to or integrate with the mature
anima, I first had to let the other anima off the hook, so that I am not split. So, while my ego may be regretting it, it is taking right action by helping the narcissistic anima first or instead, which will actually result in the
desired effect in the long run.
- Janet's comments just above turned out to be prescient, for on reading them I realized that I had been keeping my narcissistic sister, Alice, on the hook, being judgmental toward her about how she is dealing with current vocational and financial crises in which she and her husband find themselves, after having been foolish about their budgets and going more into debt for several years, till now they are facing likely home foreclosure and personal bankruptcies. After realizing I had her "on the hook," I admitted to my sister that my feelings about how they had managed their money were affecting how objective I could be now in giving her advice for dealing with the current predicament. This kind of cleared the air between us so that we have been able to start afresh, she without being so defensive and I now able to be more respectful toward her.
- Presumably this real life mini-resolution of the relationship with my sister also had a curative effect on my capacity for integrating with my anima, without the split that had been there before.
Yet another dream from 2/28/09 interpreted by Janet was "A Bridge Too High." Highlights:
- A bridge takes a person from one place to another. Either I am on a
high, so to speak, or I am high up, getting perspective. This is
like getting the bigger picture so that I can actually go from one
side to the other, or transition, concerning a key issue or issues for my growth.
- The essence of part of it may be that I see emotion and
grounding when I look to get a perspective.
- I can feel the wind racing through and over the bridge. Wind is like spirituality, and it is racing over what takes me from one place to another.
- Right now, I am the only one taking this pathway that I see.
- There seems on this high arc to be only room for people to move in single file. It is like, if I want to go to the other side, I have to be
willing to walk it alone, which is true of any individuation.
- The arc here is like ark. I am crawling to the highest
point of a hero's journey, and there is a lot of fear there. But
I am still doing it!
- About my anima in this dream, Fran, I note she is bright, talented, produces in the outer world, does more or less what she really enjoys, is competent, has a good sense of humor, is a good teacher, etc. At times I also see her as bossy, sarcastic, and arrogant. I want to impress and integrate these positive feelings or qualities and to avoid the negative ones in myself. I also hope to prove to myself that I can meet this challenge even though it is scary.
- Part of getting across this bridge may be negotiating between the
talented part of myself and the ego what it will take to get both of us, a union of anima and ego, to the other side (whatever that other side means to me), and I might
not even have to have intense fear.
- My first venture high up on this bridge arc (ark) was a practice run for my ego to try without yet taking right feeling along. Now, when I take right feelings as represented
by Fran, I am hoping we can both make it across.
- When we do this together (that's metaphorical, but it may also
pertain to the real world Fran and me), our world is going to open up and
I (we) shall have so many more choices.
- But it is always tempting to do what is safe and just stay where I am, literally and figuratively.
The next dream discussed this time is "Can't Stop the Gas Leak," on 3/16/09.
- My statement in the dream, "all I recall of this 'solution' is that there is a cut-off valve in the house and that, once it is turned, I have time to get help, perhaps from a professional handyman," is more understandable if one sees the house as the Self.
- What 'valve' is there within me that can be turned and that will stop the 'leak'? What is it in my life that is leaking out but does not provide a permanent fix? Could it be unconscious stimuli that have not been fully realized or recognized? It has the possibility of exploding. Could that describe my own conscious self, the unconscious contents including something that has the ability to make me explode emotionally? What is my life about? What experiences in life are there that have the ability to cause such emotional 'explosion'?
- The flow or gas flow may be the flow of my life through time or of my life energy that is gradually leaking away as I get closer to dying, or it could simply be an unconscious emotional or intuitive energy that is thought by the ego to need to be blocked or even shut off, though in fact it would be good for it to flow and not to be restricted in such a way that its sudden release might cause a traumatic blowup.
- The valve within, which I can turn off or on, might be, for instance, the inner shift I can make between being predominantly a thinking and rational person (with the unconscious material shut off) vs. a predominantly feeling, intuitive, unconscious energies person (with the unconscious material fully available. The "leak" into consciousness of this material may smell kind of rotten, like methane or spoiled eggs, a typical odor from leaking gas, because things have been left to fester unattended there. Ideally, one would have the "gas" of previously unconscious material available to consciousness for review and to have it as part of the repertoire of options and information I might use for making decisions in a holistic way.
The next dream is also from 3/16/09, "Big Clean-up Needed After Stepping in Doo-doo."
This dream seems to be addressing something 'within' that needs cleaning up too. But, with all the efforts, there is still residue. That may suggest I have yet to confront or realize the actual experiences in my life that has caused all the 'crap' in my emotional life. Carpets are what cover the basic foundations or floor of who we are. Although I scrub and wash the carpet, I still have yet to remove the 'dirty' contents.
Another dream considered is the one from 3/16/09 entitled "No Escape from the Swamp and Its Serpents' Strikes."
- In the swamp and snakes dream, it seems I am on the verge of 'sinking' deeper into some emotional swamp where there is no apparent way out.
- Perhaps there is a dwelling on or fear of death represented here, particularly the death of the ego, which seems forecast. That could be part of the above three dreams' intent. But there seem to be deeper emotional aspects that need to be addressed before I 'blow up' emotionally. My life may need to be examined for any residual of prior emotional experiences that may have been triggered in some fashion in the present? The anger from youth, for instance, may not yet have been put in its proper place. The childhood fascination with snakes might be a stimulus for their use in dreams. Yet they would most likely represent something else also, some other fear I have. What suppressed feelings are there? The first two dreams 3/16/09 seem to be pointing to those feelings.
The final dreams interpretation highlights reviewed in this entry concern "You've Got (Janet) Mail," from 3/14/09, and "Too Much Perspective for Me - Almost Lose My Anima," from 3/23/09.
- Janet who appears in both these dreams regards the first as very funny. She feels it means that, since computers are about thinking and I am checking out mail on my mother's computer, I am visiting the thinking part of myself that nurtures me, and I get a message from a more distant part of myself (my anima), represented by Janet.
- At this time, I am seeing Janet as athletic, a great facilitator in several ways, and exceptionally genuine.
- Janet thinks this dream indicates I have a message from this facilitating, athletic, genuine part of myself. From the next dream, her view is that the message from this anima, there to show me right feeling, is simply that I ought not push the facilitating, strong (athletic), genuine part of myself away but instead to bring it further, more closely into myself during a transformation that is now underway and that likely does not have a great deal longer to progress.
- In the next of these two dreams, which occurs high (at about the 16th or 60th floor or story of a tall building), about too much perspective and almost losing the anima, there is the building we are in, and there are also other buildings visible out the glass door. Buildings are about the self. High can be about perspective or being high-happy. 16 is enthusiasm and 60 is about setting limits. So in a part of myself I can get perspective, where the story is about enthusiasm but within limits. I am in a short, narrow (focused) transformation. 2 is dawning awareness and 3 is transformation.
- Since it is about our being employees, I have to employ dawning awareness as well as transformation in the present and looming transition.
- My ego is new to this. On the unconscious side (to the left) is a small transformation (a short hall or way of transition). The whole transition will include transformation by waiting and/or creativity (5). At the end, there is a door which is a bit unusual, but it is the opening to the transition.
- Since Janet is one of the 3-4 of us in this short hall, and she is as described just above, and 3 represents transformation, while 4 is manifestation in reality, that part of me that is genuine, facilitating, and athletic is part of the transition or transformation, which will end in manifestation in reality.
- The various shadow and/or anima parts of me are helping with my new orientation and transformation.
- They want me to have an idea of the perspective from above. However, I can see the possibility of making a big mistake (falling [or failing] a great distance, an idea here being the higher one rises, the farther there is to fall, also of arrogance or pride leading to a fall, etc.).
- In making this mistake, the feelings side of me is pushed and as a consequence there is a lot of fear. Yet, the feelings have to hold on, to persist and maintain their genuineness. I need to stay with my feelings and not try to change them into something more comfortable but just remain authentically with them. The wait, transition, or resolution of these feelings will likely not be that long, maybe occurring in the next month or two, since the hall is very short.
- My shadow and the other feeling parts help to bring the Janet anima part of myself, that had been pushed out, back internally, within myself.
- Nonetheless, there remains a lot of fear and a feeling that the ego cannot do anything under its own volition.
- Janet feels, again, that the bottom line is that the part of me that is genuine, a good facilitator, and athletic has a message for me: during the transformation, in which all the parts of me are willing to help, I should not push the part of me that is genuine away. Rather, I am to bring inside myself (not an outcast or neglected part but a truly integrated part of me) that part that is strong (athletic), knows how to facilitate things, and is genuine.
- To clarify, Janet felt that the mistake (likely having to do with how I volunteered to help out in a meditation group, but then got into a kind of ego power struggle with the group's leader) led to the feelings part of me being pushed out.
- But, even though circumstances cause fear, I am to continue being genuine.
- Janet suggests that, before I pursue further efforts to intervene in the meditation group situation (or do any other intervention), it is best to get a level of understanding that allows me to stand in the other person's shoes and really feel what that person would be feeling. Behavior (including the group leader's in response to my efforts to take over the meditation group's e-mails) makes sense. It doesn't come out of nowhere. People want things to go well, so if someone appears to do or does something to the contrary, there is a reason from their point of view. So the first thing Janet advises is to stand in their shoes and find a "story" which allows that other person's behavior to make sense. A win/win, reasonable intervention is easier coming from that point of view and is usually problematic without it.
- She also feels there is something in my personality that tends to trigger certain behaviors in others in group situations, like my negative reactions from certain key members of the dream groups, my antipathies as a result, and how I have been hooked in the current group setting in a way that causes me as well as the group's leader distress. It is not that I am wrong, but something more than immediately meets the eye may be going on here. So, remembering that the ego is often wrong, it may be better to do little or nothing for now rather than to aggravate an already sensitive, charged situation.
- Yet, at the same time, there is a tendency to put myself down and not dissent when standing up for myself is called for. Indeed, a failure to show confidence and to stand up for myself may have given people who like to take charge and to dominate or manipulate others a feeling, in close relationships or in groups, that I was sort of fair game, leading to their bullying or picking on me, then being outraged or aggressive when I belatedly showed some balls and dissented, perhaps having overreacted or been too sensitive in my turn.
- So, it is a fine line that must be drawn, and this is probably one of the key arenas for growth for me, possibly coming up again and again, as my inclinations from my father's identity or example and from my mother's fight it out within me. Dad would often come on too strong or aggressively, though he tended to be successful, a hard worker in some ways, was respected, acted more efficient, and was better able to cut to the chase in situations that did not involve working with people. With others, though, he would be charming on the one hand and on the other was as likely as not bullying in his tactics and behavior. In contrast to this, my mom would often come on too weakly, being kind to a fault, tending to be a martyr and to not get so much respect, even if people like or liked her a lot better than Dad. In some ways, she has not been as objective, efficient, or successful as Dad, though she was/is much better with people interactions, in spite of her shortcomings, than Dad had been.
- Janet believes there are solutions that are win/wins, but they seldom are arrived at with any kind of pressure, force, manipulation, heavy-handed control issues, or power struggles.
- She also thinks this situation will probably resolve itself soon, just because the hall in the dream is a short one.
- She suggests too that I review the dream of 1/22/09, "Ego Trips", in which initially I am slipping too fast down a banister, then am floating, later am out in a courtyard, and finally shoot up to a great height, for parallel lessons that may apply to the current dreams.
- Looking back, then, I find the interpretation from that dream included that there were references to things that might imply drugs, "shoot up," "before I get as high as intended," etc. However, I have never done drugs other than, in the late 60s to early 70s, a little pot or drinking alcohol - a problem briefly then in my twenties but not since - or other than the supervised "trips" in CA when in a group that experimented with Ritalin plus inhaling carbon dioxide mixed with oxygen.
- From the references to school, this "Ego trips" dream was partly about learning. From the numbers included, it appeared there was dawning awareness, transformation, and manifestation in reality. And I had 3-4 main stories to tell, or that might be told about my life.
- I had mixed feelings about the floating, soaring, stretching, and being unbound by gravity. Of course, the ego got into this in a self-congratulatory way, disappointed then when reality showed it was only a dream. And I knew the ego to be almost always wrong. But it might also have been a means to reach a higher level of vision, insight, or intuition. I wondered if banister might be a pun, perhaps some play on "ban," but did not see it if so.
- The younger man at the vending stall (interesting that I used "stall" when I meant stand) was perhaps my Jung-er and younger self shadow. I was myself of indeterminate age in the dream and might have been much younger too.
- The emphasis on brighter places could be spiritual references, as might the notion of vast vision from far aloft. But there is disappointment in missing the intended scope of that vision.
- The mood or feeling of relaxed exhilaration at the end seems positive, better than that I am losing my footing, seemingly about to fall hard and injure myself, at the beginning.
- The big old tree may represent life, growth, and experience.
- A court-yard suggested a place of judgment, which is also where one might "take the stand."
- There was a repetition of stand or stands in this dream, suggesting that taking a stand as well as dissent were key elements of it. That I was outside near a stall or perhaps "stall-ed out" might have been relevant.
- One issue here would seem to have been whether to keep my feet solidly on the ground (remain well grounded) or to go soaring off into rarified, and perhaps make-believe, realms and experiences.
- I did not know the young man in reality, and could tell little about him from the dream. There was no interaction. Except for the shadow character and me looking at one another at one point, I remained alone throughout. In fact, since there was no genuine interaction with anyone in the dream, but rather the emphasis was mainly on floating, flying, or stretching that felt as if it were defying gravity, I wonder if it may have been partly a dream about escaping my own somberness or sobriety (gravity) for a little while, going off on pleasant ego trips instead.
- The point about dissent in these dreams is probably that it needs to be voiced in a palatable way, not by being furious. I was thinking I had to be angry or defiant, but that is not it. Instead, I just needed to know I could express it and then act on that when appropriate, but in an acceptable, firm, assertive way, or even fairly pleasantly or humorously, without necessarily conveying upset, confrontation, or discord.
- It was also noted that I might need to descend from the second level (dawning awareness) to the first level (of more confusion or limited awareness) before being able to really stretch myself and hopefully to reach new heights. It was felt this might be a predictive dream, but I wondered what form that descent might take.
- The same day I was wondering that, the day after the dream in fact, an expensive chair I had picked out and bought was delivered, and I began to have a several days' long descent into buyer's remorse, with great anger, depression, or frustration about it, my worst bout of negativity in months. So, I guess that answered the question what form the descent from dawning awareness to lower level confusion, etc. would take!