September, 2007

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9/1/07 - In a DG meeting tonight, we talked, among others, about my "Time for Study, Fun, and Help for an Agitated One" dream. Highlights:

  • Major themes here are about sex, my marriage, a need for new orientation, a noting with compassion and patience the connections between and among others, generally, and me and my wife, specifically, and a question of whether or not to seek gratification with other love interests, such as younger women vs. significant sublimation, through being passionate about one or more special hobbies or other occupations.

  • It is not necessarily the course work that has been left incomplete and for which I have returned, but intercourse.

  • The oriental student, who may be a roommate, stands for a need to reorient in relation to my and my wife's needs, especially as Frances now has much less interest in or arousal for sex lately, compared with earlier in our marriage.

  • The special gold ring, which also has a seal or signet on top, signifies Fran's and my marriage, which is seen as quite important in this dream by my shadow self, the Asian gentleman, though far less so by a somewhat immature, impatient, and inconsiderate ego self.

  • Our failure to follow an appropriate reordering of values and priorities would have dire consequences for the marriage, concern for which is a matter of urgency, at least for my shadow.

  • There is a sense in which some of the interactions between me and Frances may have become rituals, both in positive and negative ways. Thus, rituals that enhance may be being neglected, and then it is important that we return to them or find equivalent other means to bolster our relationship. But things which had vitality earlier, whose added vigor or animation tended to increase our bonding, may have degenerated into mere rituals, and to that extent the marriage may have lost some of its savor.

  • It is likely that the wrist tendonitis problems are related in some ways to anger and so to tension in the shoulder and right arm areas from childhood, when at times there was an intense, though restrained, desire to "knock someone's block off," perhaps even to anger being "stored" in the liver, secondary perhaps to post traumatic stress over abuse from my father, etc.

  • A couple of consequences of the tendonitis, the cessation of Fran's and my exchanging mutual massages for the last several months and her doing more of the chores around the place, such as lawn mowing, checking under the hood more often for adequate car oil, and so on, may have shifted our traditional roles to an extent, with effects as well on our intimacy.

  • A major test for the marriage may be Fran's and my ability to keep and create new bonds, ones based on other than intense sensual interest in one another. This, in turn, may depend on my capacity to see connections that genuinely link us in this phase of our lives together, and in keeping with the overall tenor of this fresh passage (metaphorically a new semester) in the life of our dyad.

  • My anima as advisor and friend, Sonya, encourages me to be a good student, particularly in this hardest course (through dream work, discovering ways of sublimating, and finding closer connections in our marriage).

  • My anima as former friend, in her 30s, whom I ask out but who sees me as irresponsible, seeking easy solutions or satisfactions, and as lacking commitment or persistence, and so turns me down, reminds me of Frances at the same age, very attractive, yet in some ways more mature than I (certainly so when we were at equivalent ages). Frances is brilliant, supportive, dedicated to our marriage, fairly happy, and yet also at times impatient. Consistent with this anima's assessment of me, in the dream I seek, or at least fantasize, instead having the pleasures of one-night-stands with younger women.

  • There is an emphasis on #12, which in the I Ching represents: The Phi Hexagram and shows, not surprisingly, a want of good understanding, with unfavorable indications.

  • On the other hand, these attractive animas can represent captivating fresh pastimes and involvements, rather than affairs. This also could result in my finding at least "a little time for fun."

  • In short, overall, this is a time of "mid-life crisis" for me, except that it seems to be occurring rather late for mid-life. Fantasies of relocating, even without Frances, to the Pacific Northwest or of hitting on sweet young things, etc., are all consistent with this and are "normal," even if distressing.

  • Sonya believes that, as mid-life crises go, I am handling mine relatively well so far.

9/3/07 - In a DG meeting last night, we talked, among others, about my 8/4/07 "You Won't Realize What You've Got Till It's (Almost) Gone" dream. Highlights:

  • This appears to be another "mid-life crisis" type dream. These truisms, "All that glitters is not gold" and "The grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence," seem relevant.

  • The engine is likely my driving, deciding, yang energy, while the car body is probably my receptive, yin energy. It is possibly also appropriate to say the engine represents my logical, down to earth intellect, masculine energy, conscious mind, and/or intelligence, while the body (of the vehicle) is the unconscious, the physical form, and the feminine energy.

  • There is, to begin with, a desire to replace both my aging physical body and the anima (Fran, my spouse), switching them for younger models.

  • This is linked as well to my recent long trip, still ongoing at the time of the dream. I had wanted to replace my life in Austin with a more exciting and rewarding one I imagined for myself in the Pacific Northwest. Yet, toward the end of the journey, coming home (as I was on 8/4), I had begun to realize that I would be wherever I was, whether Austin, Oregon, etc., and so it was pointless to try to change locations as if that would be transformative.

  • I had also begun to see that my old familiar and reliable body, with all its warts, was best for me, as if I ever had any choice!

  • And that sticking with Frances and my spousal anima made a lot more sense than seeking a sportier or more modern version.

  • Few things come without a catch, completely free, especially when we are talking cars. I might have started to wonder about what the catch was as soon as I was given a coupon or rebate for a free replacement. But at least I came to my senses after noticing the shadow mechanics' body language reactions ("The customer is always right, even when he's wrong... ") to my wanting to change the vehicle body despite its being perfectly fitted to the engine and though certainly any new one would drastically alter and undermine the whole car's integrity.

  • At the end, I have come to appreciate the value of the combination (a bonded yin plus yang unit) that I have, just in time, before it would have been irrevocably changed.

  • There are ways in which the dream may be seen as more directly sexual. The vehicle is tapered at the front like a dune buggy, a very powerful one that will plow ahead despite resistance. Though old, like my sexuality, it is reliable as a jungle rain, and so potent and at least in metaphor potentially life giving. At the time of the dream, there was no problem about its vigor. No need then to add medical supplements to assure more than sufficient horsy power. And checking out the (male or female) engine (under the hood), I have discovered, can in my dreams be a euphemism for sexual stimulation.

  • Fortunately, whether we are thinking of simple sex or the whole yin and yang realm, I listen to the greater wisdom of my spousal anima, that "the old body is just right for that engine" and ought not to be changed.

  • Considering some of the recent dream issues and metaphors, it is an ironic coincidence that this morning, when checking under the real hoods of my and my wife's cars, I discovered that my vehicle's oil level gauge (dipstick) was defective, had broken, is completely unuseable, and so must be replaced.

9/4/07 (AM) - Title: "Ways to Get Out of the House"

There is a greater connection than before with my widowed sister-in-law, Mary. It is as though we have been trying dating and traveling together since my wife, Frances, is lately less interested in such things. But Mary is older and not so attractive as Fran, and I'm having trouble adjusting to making do with her. I notice Mary's hairy upper lip, head hair getting grayer like mine, big hips, pot belly, and large but sagging bosom. Also, she often talks aggressively, with rapid, loud, interrupting speech, so it is hard to get across my points between her dominating, controlling verbiage, though she's less this way now than in the past, especially if we are talking about esoteric or dream-related subjects. Still, overall, I wish Frances liked going out or on long trips with me so I would not feel the need for lesser alternatives. On one of my dates with Mary, I also notice a dryness and constricted feeling in my throat. I wonder in the dream what that's about. (And when I wake up, I realize I am thirsty and have phlegm in the back of my throat.)

I am next on a day trip of some sort by myself or then with a couple male friends or brothers. There is a large lake, and I or we seem to be walking and/or camping around or near it. I think one of the brothers is a younger Ralph (Mary's husband, who died in 1990). We are having a good time near the body of water, talking of neat topics and exchanging funny ideas.

9/4/07 (PM) - Title: "Emergency (emergence e-) Mission and Its Perks"

I am much younger and in a khaki uniform. I have something wrong with a hand or foot and so cannot be with my unit, and be one of the soldiers sent into an emergency situation, either a foreign country (China?), where people of that nation have taken some of ours hostage, or a place in another U.S. state, where foreign nationals or terrorists have taken American hostages who now need to be rescued. Because I somehow helped bring the crisis to the (not George W., more like FDR) American President's attention and at least one of my brothers is in the unit that will actually be going in, I am called away from campus and taken to a secret meeting room at the White House where I'll be on hand with several others (who now know what is happening as the President announces to the nation the crisis affecting relations between our country and this other one) and where a large TV monitor will show both the President speaking, even pointing out my part in the affair, and, afterward, showing the results "once our boys go in" to deal with the situation.

A young woman who has known me for awhile (not in reality) is very impressed by and proud of my roll (role) in such an adventure and gushes that she'll be waiting to help me celebrate when I get safely back, as though I, not just the rest of my unit and my brother, will be in danger.

I am quite surprised, moved, and pleased by her hugs and the look of new respect and caring I see in her face. We embrace as I am leaving (via helicopter? train?). As I and others with me go away from her, she is still watching. I see her seeming to get smaller and smaller in the distance. I suddenly feel great love for her and vow that, if I make it back alright, I'll marry her and we'll raise a family.

9/6/07 - Here are highlights from a DG discussion last night of my 8/8/07 dream, "Preying Creatures to Discuss or Watch:"

  • This is yet another sex dream, with implications for some of the rest of the life experience as well. There are several sexual puns or innuendos, including "not up to the task," "about 6 inches long," "scores," "fill up," "a lame attempt," "lower parts," and "go up just as they feel like."

  • The dream expresses a sense of inadequacy in relation to getting my spouse to like or want sexual relations with me much at all, while I am yet still desirous of sex. Even if the situation is primarily the result of physiological changes for her and a changed life situation, her disinterest is felt as emasculating, given that I am apparently not in the same place, and so not ready to forgo sexual relations, even if by now (and under the circumstances) it has become something of a nuisance. Nonetheless, my own interest does become more intermittent, both for my own aging physiology reasons and due to Fran's reactions, and though performance is usually reliable and strong, Fran's needs, for instance, for me to wait for extended periods and not go in after beginning (to allow her more time for arousal, lest the experience be painful), at times tries my stamina and imagination.

  • We have discussed such remedies as more external lubrication or stimulation and/or vitamin B complex tablets and liquid vitamin B 6, but she is reluctant to try anything new, seeming instead to be more or less complacent about hugs and light kisses being sufficient. As with earlier unilateral decisions of hers, there apparently is little room for maneuver on this issue.

  • Of course, there are at least two sides to every question, and no doubt Fran would put things differently, but the bottom line is that, for both of us, sex is no longer (or only very seldom, and then unpredictably) a free, easy, or fun option.

  • There is also a sense of inadequacy more generally. It is worth noting that I often feel in DG, for example, that I am one of the non-experts amid many real specialists, so that I usually question in advance what I have to say and am intimidated when someone else puts it down. This despite some of the true gurus of the group, especially Janet, having told me many times that my dreams show I "get it," and they having remarked, concerning several of my comments about others' dreams, that the responses were evidently direct hits, right on target.

  • So, from their perspective, it is apparently more a matter of how I perceive things than that I am in reality inadequate to the tasks.

  • The feeling of generalized inadequacy persists, however. Probably this is one of the things I have inherited from an abusive and traumatic childhood. But it does get old trotting out that cliché!

  • The form my sense of inadequacy takes is such that, Janet feels, for now I have in me enough emphasis on the yielding or traditionally feminine yin energy and, to be in better balance (in contrast to the animal, in the second part of the dream, which - more like me now - is in a weak, precarious, unbalanced position), I need instead, for now at least, to have more stress on the yang side of things. (I note this is contradictory to what I have been told by several, especially Sonya and Christine, over the course of the year or so I have been in these DGs. From this, among other things, I gather that just about anything that seems at least a little off, coming from folks who after all are mainly amateur DG members, needs to be taken with a few grains of salt.) Just how, in practical terms, to assure this new weighting is given to my yang side was left unclear.

  • The creatures in the dream are both preying type animals because, it was strongly suggested, in my sense of inadequacy over my wife no longer caring much about our lovemaking, there are temptations, dreams, or fantasies of being something of a "sexual predator," preying on young women for short-term gratification, intimacy, or feelings of manliness. (This has not occurred in reality, and likely would not, but such tendencies are at the core of my current "mid-life crisis.")

  • There are other relevant aspects of the situation hinted at in the dream: the female preying mantis often kills her mates. And/or she may bite their heads off to assure more complete fulfillment of the male's out-of-his-head (metaphorically unreserved, animal, instinctive, or uninhibited) copulating abilities.

  • In addition, it was pointed out that the dream language is explicit: by offering, through proximity, etc., the appearance or promise of rich sex and yet not delivering (without special limitations or controls on the full, natural expression of male lust), Frances, even if for the most natural and understandable reasons, shows herself to be something of a mantis (i.e. "a man tease" in the French or South African pronunciations), behavior bound to cause resentment, frustration, and anger.

  • What are the solutions to such impasses? Just as with my trip to the northwest, that was not transformative in the way I had hoped and left me wondering what now I could do, in a more practical way, to feel life was more rewarding, so here too I have owned up to the difficulties, but my ego is completely at a loss how to "fix" them.

  • So, instead, I ought to look to another message of the dream. As an alternative to becoming a jaded predator, repeatedly and pathetically seeking sweet young things to enjoy and discard (or be discarded by, once they see he is not what they expected), I might try being a praying creature instead. I can acknowledge the problem is too big for me and turn the matter entirely over to my higher inner self, higher power, or whatever concept or entity seems to best fit for a being and consciousness vastly beyond my ego level of awareness.

  • I can as well spend more quality time in meditation, equivalent for me to prayerfulness.

  • And I can simply watch, with meditative curiosity and detachment, the angry predator (whether the roaring lion or howling wolf) and his expressions of frustration and precariousness, out of balance there in the lower parts.

  • I need not in fact express those resentments or frustrations myself. It is sufficient that they be experienced, not suppressed or repressed. They are natural and healthy if not obsessed upon.

  • By watching instead of expressing outwardly such feelings, I can in time defuse them.

  • Meanwhile, acknowledging the ways I am feeling inadequate, to myself and in DG, gets this out in the open to be better dealt with. It does not in truth make me any more or less adequate or inadequate than I was, or felt myself to be, before such a discussion.

  • There are positive, hopeful aspects of the dream as well: the 3 (in 30) demonstrates that I am in transformation. And the 4 (in 40) reflects growth manifesting in reality. 40 in the I Ching stands for The Kieh Hexagram, meaning good fortune through untying a knot or unraveling a complication. The kids are noted to "normally play," a good sign, especially as other dreams have indicated more fun is an appropriate good prescription.

  • There is also mature adult nurturing behavior in looking after the welfare of the children (themselves quite positive aspects of the dream), keeping them out of danger.

9/9/07 - Title: "You Are What You Eat"

I want to help a person lying dying on the ground. He has been there for some time, but I am almost in as bad shape as he. We hear or read a message (from a third almost corpse?), about a calamity that has befallen us all plus many others. It says we can depend only on each other. There is no other medical care than what he (or she) advises. Maybe we can save ourselves. If not, then we are lost, ground meat. I encounter another person or body (or the third one, the message deliverer), so far gone it might as well be dead even if it is not (quite deceased) . But there is just a slim hope of saving it. With a terribly sharp instrument or weapon (a large scalpel? or perhaps a large cutting and serving knife?), I suddenly slash through about half the thickness of the body's trunk and then, with an immediate new slach (slash) I strick (strike) diagonally across the chest - or else someone else does the slashes, and I merely observe (this being unclear). It is not apparent from the results of such operations, but somehow I know it (this last person or body) is female, just as I knew the others were male, though I notice neither genitals now (nor other) gender specific features. The results of the slashes are peculiar and horrifying: the revealed "flesh" or form of the person or body is not flesh and bone at all but a layered yellow cheese, bean dip, ground round, and frito or tortilla chip caserole (casserole), yet in the exact shape, consistency, or "muscle" tone of a human body, as if a cholesterol- and calorie-intense (intensive) TexMex facsimile of a human being. Yet it was also, or had been, a real person. This realization is so scary, I cannot get my breath enough to scream. I wake up.

[At a cheaply catered lunch before a wedding yesterday, of one of my nieces and her fiancé, the only entree was either of two gloppy TexMex items, a ground round "taco," with no veggies but yellow cheese on top, or, presumably for the vegetarians, a refried beans burrito with yellow cheese on top. Despite misgivings, most of us ate the offered food.]

9/13/07 - In the DG meeting last night we discussed my "You Are What You Eat" dream. Highlights:

  • Themes included issues re yin vs. yang energy preeminence, the death (or at least extreme weakness now) of outmoded ego, shadow, and anima selves, having had little joy in life, alcoholic or drug addiction related personality traits, codependency, and having taken on a role, from an early age, of little self-confidence. Of course, there was also superficially concern over eating food that is extremely unhealthy for one. And there was worry that the union that weekend of my niece, Diane, and her fiancé, Hank, would turn out to have been a poor one, not really in Diane's interest.

  • The good news includes that the dream was really trying to get my attention to its message, to the extent of providing a nightmare.

  • All three of the DG members on hand last night (and each of us there was male), have or have had some form of genitourinary related dysfunction or disability (two having prostate problems or a history of prostate cancer and the third being HIV positive) and either gender identity issues or concerns over sexual or overall adequacy.

  • The treatment suggested by the message within the dream is to use a sharp, large scalpel or knife to quickly slash open and expose to scrutiny the ugly, shit-like contents, that represent what I have metaphorically swallowed in the course of my life and which have taken me over, like an alien body snatcher.

  • Among the greatest of these unsavory things I had swallowed, from an early age, was the notion conveyed primarily by my father that I am inadequate and so have no reason for self-confidence.

  • The fact is this idea, that I do not deserve to be self-confident, is a falsehood.

  • Other good news is that there is now only a slim chance of saving the outmoded parts, which are filled with such crappy beliefs, such as about poor self-worth.

  • Since the dream relates to my experiences over the wedding weekend, at which my niece and her fiancé were the principal participants, it is likely the dream also is significantly about issues similar to those of these characters.

  • Diane is idealistic, has real weight problems, loses and gains a lot frequently, has codependency issues, feels herself lacking in sufficient self-worth, tends to go along with whatever someone else wants of her, rather than protecting her own needs, etc., and yet is also very loving, passionate, able to serve others well in a helping capacity, an extrovert, and reasonably bright.

  • Hank is insistent on his own way, has a temper, has had alcohol and/or drug problems, has also been in trouble with the law (with some suggestion of having been arrested for burglary), and is in a custody fight with his Mom for care of his two sons, but is trying sincerely to reform and live up to Diane's hopes and expectations for him, is of above average intelligence, and is now holding down a job as an electrician.

  • Presumably I have some of the characteristics of these two, if not in as extreme a form. And it is understandable that I have misgivings about how the marriage will work out.

  • It is well that I am facing up to reality some, including the more positive truths about myself, no longer just uncritically taking in and assuming the correctness of everything negative.

9/14/07 - Title: "Trapped"

I'm driving my compact car alone at night. It seems I had intended to just go out for a short stint of grocery shopping. At first, the area (landscape) is wide open, with far horizons to either side as well as behind and in front. But soon, without my realizing just when the change came, I am in an industrial dump area and know that at any moment monstrously large vehicles will be maneuvering through, just where I am, perhaps trains traveling out here in the no man's land where I now find myself. The trains travel on pairs of rails that intersect and cut off my route. Or perhaps great industrial trucks will arrive that may simply ignore the presence of my car and run me over. The trains and trucks move through the area unpredictably (as to both frequency and route) from my point of view, so there is no place here that is safe. I hope to quickly find my way back to the main, two-lane, blacktop road, but do not see it anymore. Nor is it clear if there is a way back that is still negotiable (drivable) for my car. In any case, I realize I must somehow vacate the present area (environment) almost at once. But I am increasingly hopeless of finding a means of escape in time.

Next (in a new scene), I am driving at night what I think is the way into a Safeway or HEB store parking area, but suddenly realize I am on a truck route where regular cars cannot proceed. The wheels and chassis (body) of my car are not made for so rough and irregular a road. I come to a stop but see there is nowhere I can turn. Large piles of coal or other industrial materials before (ahead of) or on either side of my position prevent my going forward or turning around. I must back up a long distance, yet there is extremely poor visibility behind. Only if I exactly retrace the route I used to enter this hazardous area can I hope to get out alright. However, there is little or no external light. My tail-lights are not good enough amid so many dark piles (of coal or other dark industrial materials) for me to see to drive backward. The odds against success in driving almost blindly backward in such an alien area would be great. And I know that at any moment one or more huge vehicles, perhaps 18-wheelers, will come barreling down this one-lane truck route, heedless of small obstacles like cars that are where they should not be. Then my car and I would be simply crushed. Nobody is around whom I can ask for help. I think maybe I should just get out of my car and run for the safety of the supermarket, but there are great pits and drops here amidst the industrial piles or supplies, and in the dark I cannot tell where to safely maneuver (walk).

9/16/07 - In a DG meeting this afternoon we talked about my "Trapped" dream. Highlights:

  • Major themes here are immaturity, anal-retentive (mechanistic, non-organic) fixations, feeling psychologically raped in my primary relationship(s), having power conflicts related to this situation (with Frances having assumed the animus role in many opportunities, asserting it to the extent she sometimes distorts reality to maintain her "dominance," not even checking in with others to assure the accuracy of her assertions, merely insisting dogmatically on their correctness, when clearly they are sometimes in error, so insecure is she in her position, as though, like George W., she cannot admit to herself any weakness or fault, lest the whole erroneous facade come crumbling down), hopelessness, the absence of either my own healthy sense of animus or a positive anima, and having both outer and inner loneliness.

  • I do feel trapped in this overall circumstance. I have few viable options. For instance, I may get ill and die, or go crazy, or commit suicide, or I can start having affairs or "affairs of the heart" with close attachments to people outside the marriage but no sex, or I can get a divorce, in the hope that I may find more fulfillment outside the restrictions of this relationship, or Frances and I can work on improving our partnership together, both sincerely trying to improve things to mutual advantage, or I can work on things by myself, in the hope that eventually changes within me will force changes in the relationship, to which Fran can either respond with positive changes as well or try to stay the same, and let the chips fall where they may.

  • The one certainty is that the current impasse will not remain indefinitely. Change is coming, one way or another. And it likely will not be comfortable.

  • A major difficulty is that there cannot be two animus figures in one relationship, but I am the male, and so it is abnormal and dysfunctional, since I am not an effeminate gay man, for me to have the anima role while Fran plays the doing energy, in charge, or dominant animus one.

  • Because I am fundamentally more a "nice guy" than an ogre or a macho bully, I have tended to give in to Frances rather than have more or less continuous fighting, yet at tremendous cost to my own sense of self-worth. Or else my low self-esteem to begin with, when combined with her abnormally high self-esteem and preference for being in charge, set us up for this kind of transactional impasse.

  • There needs to be a way to step back from either of these polarities, to diminish the sense of conflicting wills, yet without one having to give in to the other. In other words, there needs to be a means to have many win-wins, instead of the current win-lose set of transactions between us.

  • Meanwhile, in or out of the marriage, it would be good to find natural ways to be more into my yang energy, less into the yin, more into confidence, less into uncertainty, fears, or self-doubt, more into being an independent grown up, less into dependence, more into flexibility and utilizing creative alternatives, less into compulsive, rigid means of dealing with reality.

  • With respect to the dream realm, I can ask for inner allies, friends, or companions, and/or the assistance of a higher inner power.

  • In the outer world, I can develop my relationship with Puff, with whom I have a mostly positive, non-competitive relationship, and do so in ways that are confidence building and enhance already upbeat interactions.

  • The development of a new framework for the dyad must be on the basis not of manipulation or power tripping on either side, but of equal partnership. It may be we are not ready for that right now, so stepping back some from arenas that incite angry conflict or resentment may be best for the time being.

  • I am feeling very cautious and uncomfortable with applying the dream work to non-dream circumstances. I do not want, nor do I think it practically doable, to be in "marriage counseling" when I am the only one participating. So, my only constructive avenue for change, unless Fran herself wants or agrees to be in some type couples work, is to seek growth within myself. If that leads to change for the relationship, well and good.

  • Meanwhile, there IS a safe way. With allies, friends, or a higher inner guide in the dream realm, this way may be found.

  • I am also uncomfortable with there being few protections against projection by members or leaders of dream groups. So far, it seems best to take everything with a grain of salt. If what I hear rings true for me, that's fine. However, when it clearly is consistent with defenses or personal issues of the people doing the advice giving or interpreting, red flags need to be up.

  • This dream, as it is, looking just within its context, draws a picture of great despair. That picture must change and soon, or there may be dire consequences.

9/18/07 - Title: "My Roommate, the Rat"

I'm in a room at night. I'm alone, except then I discover there is also a rat with me here. It alternately moves slowly or scurries around on the bare wood floor. It does not particularly bother me. In fact, I feel a sense of welcome toward it, as if he (? - somehow I think of the rat as male) might be (become) a pet. We share the room in dim light. There is a single naked light bulb in the ceiling fixture, just a 40- or 60-watt bulb.

Title: "Living Alone, Yet With Lots of Others"

(In another scene) I'm on one side of a large house. It is divided, almost like a duplex. I am looking from inside the sprawling old southern style house toward the big covered porch that stretches across the entire front of the place. There is a screen door between where I am (inside, back a room or two from the porch) and the porch. I hear a commotion of some sort out front. Maybe there are a bunch of kids playing in the street. Others in the house evidently hear it to (too), or perhaps they heard it before I did. Several men and women from the other side of the house have already gone out to the front borth (porch) to check out the commotion. They are milling about in a big group, and I see them through the screen door from behind. Mary (my widow sister-in-law) is standing right in front of the screen door. Since she's looking out, I see her from behind. It's a common porch but a divided house, with the other side having its own screened door entrance that the others used to access the porch. But there are so many of them that, once they spread out, several, including Mary, are on "my" side of the common porch and in front of my entrance.

[Before going to bed, I had asked of the dream maker for a dream of an ally, or friends, companions, an adviser, or a higher power (in contrast to the lonely, isolated "Trapped" dream of a few nights ago).]

9/22/07 - Title: "Of Intelligence, Security, Pretence, and Dog(s) Napping"

I'm younger, maybe in my thirties. Under the leadership of a competent, experienced agent, I have been helping several others (men and women) with a counter-intelligence or security operation against a ruthless, professional enemy intelligence service (Russian?). I am not one of those in charge. Nor am I one of our side's specialists. I am assisting, taking guidance from them on what I can do to help the operation (or mission) succeed. The foreign team has kidnapped (dog-napped) a cute little dog. She looks like Timid (Sonya's dog). Apparently we are to think that if we do not cooperate she will be killed. And, indeed, we do not cooperate (though we pretend to for awhile), and then we see a small canine body splayed out at an odd angle as if dead. It has fresh red and pink stains over much of its body, as though from wounds that had bled badly. But later it turns out we we (were) completely successful this time against the foreign professionals. And when we got the Timid-looking dog back and had washed her off, she was fine, just happy to see us. There was some concern, though, that now Puff might be at risk. Sooner or later, it was likely the foreign team would try to retaliate.

9/25/07 - Title: "Undoctored, But Still a Fine Resumé"

I'm at a family gathering or a reunion of my extended family. My mother, secure and complacent in her role as matriarch, is holding forth, glad to be the center of attention. She is loudly talking (so everyone can hear) to my new fiancé or bride, Charlotte. Mom is saying something, in her meant-to-sound-liberal but really prejudiced way, such as: "So, with a little doctoring, you could have a pretty good resumé!" But I react to this, and, before an embarrassed Charlotte can answer, I respond (also loudly, so everyone can hear) somewhat like: "Mom, with a little doctoring, Charlotte's resumé would be much better than most. But already, with no changes whatever, it is better than the resumé of everyone here!"

[I went for awhile in college (I thought I was in love with her) with a young woman named Charlotte, whom the dream Charlotte is like. Finishing her B.A. in 3 years, she was a senior at UT in Austin when I was a sophomore there, and she left without me when she graduated, going then to the University of IL to get a masters in history, and to then likely begin a teaching career. She married an ex-Vietnam vet, an Army captain whom she met while there. Charlotte was easily amused and amusing, well liked, smart, sensual, well rounded (in both senses), and focused on her education. Her only "fault" was in quitting our relationship by leaving and then starting over with someone else.

I had first wanted to be a physician, then later to get a Ph.D. As things turned out, though, my resumé was "undoctored."]

9/26/07 - Title: "Caught with a High Calorie Beer"

I am standing next to a low wall or fence, maybe 3-4 feet high. It extends for a good long distance to the left and right. Before, I have been moving along next to it (with it on my left) on a sidewalk. I am holding a 32 oz. beer, in a typically brown beer bottle. (For some reason, even though I think it is a 32 oz. size, the bottle is actually smaller than that, the usual 12 oz. size container.) Then Fran is there, as though she just walked up on the other side of the wall or fence. I don't want her to know I've been drinking a beer and hope I can pretend it is a bottle of water. I don't want her to know I've been consuming the extra calories in the beer. But Frances is not fooled. Water doesn't come in a brown bottle. She can tell I have not been serious about getting my weight down.

[At different times the dream group folks have told me different things about a need for greater emphasis on yin vs. yang, being more macho vs. more sensitive, or masculine vs. feminine. For several months, when I asked what I needed to do in response to some of the dreams I was having, I was actually being told I need to be much less a "doer," but instead more a "be-er." Lately, the advice has seemed to be just the opposite. Confusing!

While Frances and I were recently in CO, there was a 3-4 foot painted cinder block wall or fence between a sidewalk (that Puff and I frequently used for twice daily walks) and one side of our Denver motel parking lot. Also while we stayed there I bought and drank a 12-oz. bottle of peach-flavored green tea that looked like a beer. I had that same day commented to Fran that I needed to start a reducing diet, as I had been getting too many calories on this trip.

After recording this dream, I had occasion to check my auto tire pressures and discovered there was a 7 pound difference per square inch between the least and greatest inflations. I rebalanced them all to 32 lbs. PSI.]

9/27/07 - Title: "A Fresh Start - A New Printing"

I've been involved in a small way in the first-time setting up of a new-age kind of organization. It has a number of participants or members. It's almost time for the opening. Food will be served at times at the house (a two-floor place with lots of open space) where people live and meetings will take place. Also, a book has just been published, and it will be available for purchase or free distribution in connection with the organization. I have had a small part in the preparation of the book. It is a trade paperback or about that size and has a white or off-white cover. Until now, there has been one copy left in the meeting/residence house, though many more are to be available later. A tall, fairly conservatively dressed man, new to the organization but expressing interest in it, has just arrived. Since the book is a good introduction to some of our organization's beliefs, I mention it to the newcomer. As he wants to take it with him, I let him have it (free or for purchase?). Later, I explain to a woman (who seems like Janet, and who is much more involved in the organization than I) that we now have no more copies of the old printing book left and why. She agrees with my having given it to the stranger, but is concerned that the large quantity of newly printed book copies arrive soon.

9/28/07 - Title: "Boosting Confidence Through Dream Powers"

I'm at a large gathering in a big building. It is the beginning of a conference, and I have helped organize it or am one of the key presenters. Hundreds of other people are there, milling about in a closely packed group and waiting for things to start. There are no aisles or walkway separations between the crowded people. Another man, somewhat taller than I, dressed formally and who, like me, is one of the conference organizers, suggests I use my powers. I am shy to do so. But I have left something I need for my talk or presentation far to the back in this large meeting room. Since there are no paths through the masses of people, it normally would take quite awhile to get through them, retrieve what I had left in the back, and return with it before I could finish setting up for my part in the conference. My typical means of getting through would be to politely say "Excuse me" dozens of times, then wait for the different sets of folks to notice me, realize what was needed, and step out of my way. This would take far too long. However, remembering my powers, I realize I can just look at people, convey what I want, and so accomplish the same thing much more effectively. Sure enough, as I look at people currently in the way, I empathize with each one and can tell in a glance (as though inside them) what is going on with each of them, while at the same time conveying telepathically my urgent need to get by. One after another, they look at me with a puzzled expression for just a moment and then step out of the way, so that an easy path opens up, I get what I need from the back, and am able to begin my presentation on time.

[The feeling was of pleasure in truly, deeply understanding each of the other people, sensing a rapport with them, as well as great satisfaction in the exercise of special powers to most efficiently accomplish my purpose, as if, by simply assuming I could do a thing, I could in fact do it, while my usual approach would instead have proven inadequate.]

9/29/07 - Title: "Dangerous Attachments"

I am becoming infatuated with many aspects of India and Indian Americans. An Indian American family invites me into their home, feet (feeds) me delicious Indian dishes, teaches me the names of various delicacies, offers me the tenets of their mystical, spiritual traditions (with which I am comfortable), and lets me meet and get to know their adult daughter. She is a beautiful, intelligent woman, polished, poised, and at once outspokenly independent and very feminine. There is danger here. I cannot hope to be welcomed as her suiter (suitor). Her parents will insist that she marry someone from her own background. Yet I am falling in love with her. I am also getting caught up in the political and social causes of this family and their Indian American friends, feeling sympathetic to them. Yet there are those who attack them for simply being themselves. I may become a target for such hatred if identified with their community. I see a car with several Indian Americans inside, some my friends, and I wave. My friends wave back, but then the car is fire-bombed. The heat and fire are too intense for me to help. The four inside are burned to death.

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