July, 20101 4 6 11 12 21
7/1/10 - Title: "Dog Attack"
I am out walking at night in our neighborhood with my dog, Puff. Suddenly, in the dim street lighting, I see there is a large, aggressive unleashed black dog a short distance ahead. It is already alerted and almost ready to charge us. I pick Puff up into my arms, but her excited struggles are such I can barely hold her, and the movement has egged on the stray. It rushes forward. I yell and advance toward it. Surprised, it backs off a little, but then is even more angry, apparently ready to leap at my throat. I have, it seems, nothing with which to fend it off. I think of my shoes, but do not believe I have time to grab one and throw it at the dog before it will be at me. In any case, I doubt the shoes will be enough.
[It occurs to me that the dogs in this dream may be partly about wrestling with the concept of my higher power. On a Step 4 (of the 12-step program) Alanon workbook page that I was reviewing late last night, the next question to be answered was how I show love for my higher power (HP). If that is some of what this dream is about, it is clear (and accurate) that I have mixed sentiments regarding a HP, loving it when I can personalize it and find that it is in some fashion in a relationship with me, even in a sense under my control, but finding it especially fearsome when it instead represents a power alien to me, definitely not allied with my ego identity.
Our dog, Puff, is extremely playful, relatively smart (as canines go), female, and highly social. I had the impression the aggressive unleashed dog was male, antisocial, also smart, but very aggressive.
Another take on the dream may be that it is revealing a split between more feminine traits with which I am reasonably comfortable and masculine ones, such as showing aggression and strength, from which I may be alienated. The latter are more characteristic of the dad I knew when I was growing up, though my dad mellowed quite a bit in his older years.
I also think a "must do" vs. more easygoing "may do" approach to how I fill my days may be in part reflected in this dream. My father, who seemed more like the aggressive dog of this dream (or the aggressive, alienated HP of this dream) tended to put things in absolutes, being very judgmental, couching things in terms of what I must be like or have to do, etc., and being quite impatient with any indication of less than macho attitudes or behavior. In contrast, the options-to-do approach to filling my day is much more like play, such as I typically do with Puff.
The bit in the dream about considering using my shoes to fend off the other dog may suggest thinking about having a mere change of stance to help deal with the aspects of my HP (or masculinity) with which I am less comfortable, but realizing that this will not be sufficient.]
7/4/10 - Title: "Treason and Related Crimes"
Tom Hanks, among others, plays a moving, sympathetic character role as a military man who gets caught up in a situation in a foreign country during wartime that leads to his (and their) involvement in conspiracy, mutiny, desertion, and related crimes, most of them understandable, even laudable in the context. Though he eventually confesses and even aids those who are pursuing and administering justice, the Tom Hanks character, along with about five others, are killed by firing squad. A very few others, guilty only of minor, lesser crimes, are allowed to live but must make a public confession and then serve lengthy sentences for their infractions. It is as though Tom Hanks is playing another movie role, and yet his being shot is real enough and was a surprise, for I had thought, since he had expressed remorse, sincerely apologized, and aided the government, and since what he had done most any sensitive person in the circumstances would have also done, he might have had to only do community service or perhaps spend some time in prison. Yet those administering justice showed no leniency to these prisoners.
[My mood or reaction at the end was of surprise, somberness, and sadness, but also of rightness, correctness, that so many, even some who were apparently good people, just people caught in unfortunate circumstances, had to die.
I may still be grieving some over the recent death on 6/18 from cancer of a close friend. Also, we saw the "Avatar" movie last night, in which "the good guys" were in several cases traitors, and the military personnel were "the bad guys" so things were complicated, and almost nobody but the native populations could be purely "good."
I believe this dream is also related to the Alanon 12-step program. One must admit one's deficiencies and be willing to make amends before there can be better resolution of the splits we carry around inside us, so we may become more whole again.
Of Tom Hanks, I think he is smart, a regular guy, a good actor, and usually plays characters I admire, with whom I identify, even if they are at times technically in the wrong.
There must be ways I am at war within myself, and there is no way to avoid paying the price - even a very high cost - for that.]
7/6/10 - Title: "The Gift"
In a series of scenes, I am being given a glowing rectangular box, approximately 6"x4"x4". Most of the time the benefactor is a glowing, tall Native American woman, though sometimes it is a Native American man.
[There is a deep sense of spirituality about both the gift itself and the ones who hand it to me. I do not see the box being opened or know the nature of its contents, but feel the box itself, as well as what is in it, are deeply spiritual and significant.
My only associations to the dream are, first, to a book I am reading, The Cold Dish, a well written mystery in which esoteric phenomena are extremely healing and greatly enhance intuitive talent for a lawman who saves two badly injured men in the mountains near an Indian reservation in Montana and, second, a wooden box my (now deceased) brother, Ralph, had decorated and considered sacred, in which he kept original copies of written communications from his meditation master, a distinguished (Asian) Indian gentleman.
I think the dream may represent gifts and/or messages from my conception of primarily anima aspects, and sometimes shadow ones, of a higher power.
The size of the gift, 6 x 4 x 4 inches, suggests flexibility plus substantial manifestation in reality. 6 is also 2 x 3, which suggests dawning awareness as well as transformation.
The repetition of the dream in several scenes through the night may indicate the importance of the dream themes.
Of Native American women and men, in the dream they have an idealized character, but in reality I do not think of American Indians as being particularly special. I believe they often have major problems in life in our culture and significant moral, violence, poverty, drug and alcohol abuse, and cultural issues.
I did go to Mesa Verde National Park on my recent long trip and there learned interesting things about Indians in the Colorado Plateau from about 700-1300 A.D.
I had a couple minor encounters with Indians on reservations, at gas stations or grocery stores, also while on the trip.
I think they have been victims of our dominant culture, starting with the first encounters between Native Americans and Europeans and continuing through the present. I do believe the Native Americans, more often than Anglo Americans, have had an attitude toward nature and their place in it which is much more likely to be sustainable and which is revering of rather than at odds with the natural environment.]
7/11/10 - Title: "Air Attack"
A World War II setting in which I am a civilian on the ground when a formation of fighters attack from my left, strafing with bullets and rockets, then passing overhead a little in front of me.
In a later scene, it is the same type setting, but this time I have turned around, and from my new orientation the low flying planes' strafing is coming from a formation at first on my right, then overhead, right over me, and continuing on to my left. As the strafing commences, I have tried to hide behind a hedgerow, then see the silliness of it, for a hedge won't stop thousands of bullets and rockets. I look in vain for a safe place as the bullets/rockets begin hitting all around me. It seems virtually certain I'll be killed. I am out in the open, hidden from sight a bit by the hedge, perhaps, but otherwise totally exposed to the rapid impacts of the warplanes' shells/rounds.
[Likely this dream relates in part to Alanon Step 4 issues and concerns. Clearly too, I am maintaining civility, am well grounded, and yet am in serious inner conflict over matters touched on in the Alanon 12-Step program. No matter what orientation I attempt, the conflict's threat persists from left or right, and it appears this ego faces death.]
7/12/10 - Title: "No Rest for the Worried"
Scene 1 - I have rented a room. After I go into it, intending to take a nap on the bed, which is next to and parallel to a large window (to the right of the bed as I'm facing it, but to its left if I were sleeping), I notice a large rattlesnake that is against the screen. There is no glass, just the big screen, for the window. (Presumably the glass part slides away or folds out, but it is not apparent at all in the dream.) The snake is propped up on part of a hedge of shrubbery just beyond the screen and is thus lying about halfway up the window screen. Its big head is several inches long, and next to the screen, and the rest of the snake is coiled up against the screen on the shrub branches. I am relieved to see that the snake is outside the screen, but also somewhat shocked that it is so close there and so large and powerful.
Next I also see several tiny mice on the floor, some of them baby mice and a few of more normal mouse size, so they must be adults. They all scurry about in the floor area, under and near the bed. It occurs to me that these would make good food for the snake. I am alarmed and also kind of disgusted at the presence of numerous little vermin there.
Scene 2 - The snake is now partly in the unmade bed, having come in through a big hole in the screen. Evidently part of it is still hanging in the shrubbery just outside the window and part of it, including the head, is in the bed. Now I am quite distressed and wonder how I shall get the snake out of the room. Sleeping under these conditions is clearly out of the question.
Scene 3 - Either because it has seen me or from some other catalyst, suddenly, swiftly, and with serpentine power and grace, the snake slides all the way out the hole in the screen, so it is now all outside the room. I wonder how I can safely plug the hole in the screen before the snake comes back in through it.
But then I am distracted again by the little young and adult mice running rapidly and chaotically about on the floor near and under the bed. They seem to come and go through a cistern entrance, a place in the floor kind of like a big louvered bathtub drain, with openings big enough for them to move freely in and out. I grab something heavy and bulky and begin trying to smash them with it, by dropping it, or then by whacking them with it. 2-3 seem stunned momentarily but most just still carry on, running about as if I were not there. (I wake up.)
[The snake appears to be suppressed or repressed emotions, sexuality, and/or desire for intimacy. The hole in the screen represents a hole in my life that needs to be filled, again likely related to absence of intimacy or mutual sexuality and/or a sense of fulfillment, that my life makes a difference, is worthwhile. The rodents chaotically scurrying about on the floor would seem to be any number of small matters that take up my time and attention but that have little real bearing on a life being worthwhile. Yet they occupy most all my free time and concentration. Many of them are related to aspects of my unconscious material (coming through a space that is like a louver in the floor or a drain in a bathtub-like place), feelings, or intuition having been neglected. Janet says the good news is that following the Alanon program probably will help resolve such issues. Also that dream work and meditation tend to dovetail with the results of Alanon progress in a positive, cohesive way. She says too that the snake represents not just emotions and passion or sexuality but also potential spirituality. There might be better perspective from the dream's window. However, this is mostly blocked by both the hedge, a way of protecting oneself, and the snake.]
7/21/10 - Title: "Falling into a Sea of Tranquility"
At night, a sense of falling. The image of our passenger plane arcing over to the left and plunging toward the ocean. Around me, panic, a sense of urgency among passengers and crew. An image of a stewardess passing out emergency flotation devices, her arms full of them. It is as though she feels this is futile, yet is frantic to pass them all out and as quickly as she can. I myself, though, am detached, calm, content. I sense that all will be well. I want us to just slow down, take it all in. I feel joyous.
[Am I too shocked to realize what is happening, or have I shifted into my rational, logical, analytical mode, and so am immune to the emotions, or do I understand something the others do not? It may be there is too little here to interpret beyond the obvious. For some reason the ego is at peace, as though he is in denial or as if he knows we are plunging into a "sea of tranquility." There is a sense of the meaning behind the (Simon and Garfunckle?) sixties song phrase: "Slow down; you move too fast."
Just from the content of the dream itself, without looking at the ego's odd reaction, it appears that imminently there will be, in the way I am getting through life, a shift to the left, into emotions, intuition, and unconscious material. This is emphasized not only in our air vehicle's arcing to the left, but also in the plane's apparently inevitable destination, a plunge into the sea. The use of the word "arcing" is interesting, containing an "ark (arc)," a vehicle to use for floating on and being saved from a vast flood, again stressing the movement toward emotions, intuition, and what was unconscious becoming more conscious. An arc is also a more creative or feminine way of getting from here to there than a straight line. The idea of floating upon this sea or flood is emphasized as well by my very anxious anima, the stewardess, seeking to do whatever she can to improve the situation by passing out flotation devices. However I come to it, my sense of joy, even if delusional from the standpoint of this small ego's potential for survival, seems positive. Nonetheless, there is also the option, instead, of "passing out," which the so worried anima models, and so of missing the gains of what appears to be about to happen.]