November, 2012

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11/10/12 - Title: "Goodbye, Dad"

We are in a house. My dad is there, also my mom, a couple other relatives, and me. (I guess it's my parents' place.) Dad (who actually died at age 83, in 1995, from a series of smaller strokes, then a massive one) is very close to me and walking. It seems he is trying to say something but, very quickly, he sort of gags or chokes and staggers and appears about to fall down. I grab him, but he's too heavy to hold up, and we both go down. The way he's fallen, his robe has come open, exposing his nakedness. He's in a bad way, having trouble breathing, unable to talk, and without control of his limbs. I yell for help, though I don't know what anyone can do, and for something to cover his privates, maybe a blanket. He's dying. I just cradle him in my arms from behind and hold him as best I can.

[Fran points out that a "stroke" may be "of luck." It may also signify affection, approval, or a compliment.

Of my dad, I'd say he was competent, methodical, and judgmental. My mom is manipulative, at times plays the martyr, and yet is very engaged in life and in the lives of others in a positive way.]

11/12/12 - Title: "Oops."

I'm needing to drive my car somewhere right away. Meanwhile, unknown to me, my dad has been doing something near my vehicle. The result of his actions and/or of mine, through our not taking each other into account - and of course I think it is his fault - is that his vehicle's trailer hitch, protruding a foot or so out from the lower rear of his pickup truck, makes a big dent in the left side back (rear) door of my car. He says something about hoping nothing he did caused me any problems. I say something sarcastic like "Not much, just a big damaged place that wasn't there before!" I am really pissed, but try to rein in my reaction because it is my dad, and I'm supposed to show him respect, regardless of my genuine feelings.

[Of my dad, I'd say he was competent, practical, methodical, yet demanding and judgmental. The dream suggests at least a small collision between the ego's way of moving through life and that of my shadow represented by my father. The ego (I) perceives this as negative and as the fault of the shadow, though chances are he had not been so careful and observant himself, or he could have avoided the damaging impact. It seems likely the dream is also saying there has been damage to a shadow aspect of my emotional self (left side and "back"), due to an unfortunate collision of alien styles (within me) of getting through this existence.]

11/24/12 - Title: "Up to the Job?"

A complicated dream, most forgotten but...

A scene - A man at a university has asked me to help out at a biology lab or large aquarium exhibit building. Here there are abundant tanks, artificial ponds, and smaller aquariums with multiple types of setting for aquatic life. I had agreed, though I cannot figure out if it is just a kind of maintenance work job, like a janitor or another entry level position here, or if I'm being hired because it really is a job that is challenging yet which they think I can do well.

Another scene - I see several women, grad students or others extremely well qualified in life sciences. They are on a break and sitting on some steps. I'm trying to figure out where in my new job I fit in and am to begin. One woman (quite pretty and reminding me of a movie star who plays "difficult" yet brilliant women who are, however, quite interesting, rewarding, and attractive to get to know) loudly implies to the others that I am not mentally equipped to handle my new duties. I'm wondering if she is right, but immediately respond that I am in fact highly qualified, probably more so than she. She clams up, embarrassed or hurt, perhaps wondering if what I said were true despite her petty remark and first impression.

Another scene - A man (whose name I think is Dana) has given me a task and a day to start working in my new university/aquarium building job. A lot of obstacles seem to intervene. I am also having many misgivings about beginning my new job.

Another scene - There are multiple scenes and people, seemingly in a jumble. It is confusing, and I do not understand what I am to be doing.

Another scene - Someone (a woman?) tells me I must carefully remove the moss-like algae growth from an artificial mound or coral reef in one aquarium, save the living things (fauna) I find in it, and clean the mound/"coral" concrete foundation. Once it has all been cleaned down to the concrete, it can have a protective stain or coating applied. Somehow this is all to be done while water fills (remains in) the tank/aquarium. I consider it a menial job, one that is uninteresting and that I don't want to do, but feel resigned to starting it.

Another scene - I encounter the attractive, brilliant young woman who had slandered me by declaring I wasn't smart enough for the job. She's offended that I said I may in fact be more qualified than she, worried that it may be true, yet also curious and attracted to me on the assumption it is true.

Another scene - A man (reminds me of the manager of a non-profit whom I know) says they've noticed I haven't done much in the three months since I was given the job, but that's OK, that they are liberal and tolerant here. However he wants to know what is keeping me from buckling down and applying myself. I tell him about my doubts whether I'm qualified and also thinking the few duties I had been assigned were meanial (menial), beneath me, and could be done by any janitor trained in working in aquariums. He assures me the work they need me to do is quite challenging, that if I thought it too basic or simple I wasn't looking at it right or doing it right, but that I am qualified if I will apply myself with seriousness and concentration.

Another scene - I realize that what is called for is like the attention needed for moment-to-moment, well focused meditation, not simply while sitting in meditation but during the various activities as I go through my day. I have, however, misplaced a small creature I was saving (holding in my right hand) from the cleaning-before-staining project and just hope I had put it into another filled aquarium while distracted.

Title: "Ferocious God"

A complicated dream and most forgotten except...

I am in and around a house (not clear if it is my house or not, but if so it is not my real house, as this one is more open to the outside, including a screened and covered patio or porch, no walls, just the screens). Both at the entrance to the house and in the adjacent yard and later even in other areas, farther away, there are a series of bad encounters with a dog about the size of a wolf or German shepherd. It is angry and aggressive. Even when I do not see it, I sense its presence nearby, and it may suddenly leap out at me, snarling loudly and seeking to bite. It does in fact bite me several times, despite my attempts to defend myself with a sharp knife. I do not want to kill it, only to wound it if it cannot be kept away otherwise, yet it keeps lunging, so I feel I must keep jabbing at it with small stabs, that maybe go into it a half-inch to an inch deep. Of course, its teeth are also going into me about to the same depth but with more energy and gripping power and side to side tearing, mainly affecting my right arm or the right hand that holds the knife. I do not get free of the dog's attacks. Even after it backs off and goes away, it keeps coming back and attacking again. Eventually, still worried about further attacks, I wake up.

[Regarding the first dream, it is hard not to notice that tanks can be about attacking in warfare, and the spelling of "mean-ial" is also suggestive of negativity and/or one person treating another badly, as was the case with the woman telling others I lacked sufficient mental equipment and my reactive response that I was at least as well endowed in that way as she. There is throughout the first series of scenes a theme of being down on myself, as well, wondering if I am worthy enough or good enough or smart enough or if instead others see me as fit only to do rather simple tasks, and with good reason.

I have known only one Dana well enough to remember him. He was smart, sort of childish, and going through a kind of mid-life crisis. He was at the time also depressed and self-destructive, not actively suicidal but taking big risks. Once he fell off a roof (after not taking precautions before going up to work there) and badly broke his leg. He had a lovely wife and young kids, but was acting irresponsible enough that he might lose them. Dana was a physician and had had a good practice. He started making LSD by the bathtub full and taking it for various "trips," without taking precautions such as assuring supportive friends would be around. He also would give LSD he had made away to whomever wanted some. While I was writing up a complicated application for conscientious objector status - after already being in the National Guard - on the grounds that I objected on ethical grounds to the Vietnam War, he offered me a prescription of uppers (speed) to help me finish the document within the time limit. I accepted, and the prescription he gave me was in the form of a large container of pills, scores and scores of them. Getting more anxious and obsessed and depressed as I continued taking these pills, going without sleep, and working on the C.O. application, one night I decided it was hopeless to convince the military - which at the time I sort of conflated with a hated father - and I might as well angrily end it all. I took all the remaining contents of the bottle, expecting it would so speed up my metabolism that I would die of a stroke or heart attack. Detached from other emotions than resentment, I sat down to write a lengthy suicide note. As the drugs kicked in, though, the effects were rather different, and I had hallucinations coupled with a vast understanding of great emotions, like love for the world's children, the intense beauty in people's faces, etc. I began have a weird kind of tick that I thought were related to my heart giving out or epilepsy or something, but by now after experiencing these huge emotions, I no longer wanted to die and no longer was aware of any intense anger. My left arm and hand began moving automatically, that is without my volition, changing my suicide note into a tablet filled with what I thought were great and intense works of art formed with huge passion and rapidity, as if revelations from god. Of course, later I looked through the tablet and it was mostly filled with scribbles. I wound up in a psychiatric hospital. As a condition of my discharge, I had to tell the professional leader of a Jungian therapy group, that I was in, the name of the person who had given me the large quantity of speed, which I did. This led to Dana losing his license to practice medicine, at least for awhile.

The references to a university setting may indicate at once a place of higher learning and perhaps an emphasis on unity. There are animas whose specialty is life sciences and I am as well being asked to work in areas focused on these life sciences, particularly ones in and around containers of emotion, so evidently this is the area I am to work on now, and I am also being assured I am qualified to handle this work or course of study and that it is not merely at a remedial level but is serious, challenging, worthwhile work.

This work on or at aquariums or other bodies of water does indeed, then, suggest my work being on the unconscious, intuition, and/or feelings.

In the real world, I do not see myself as really smart intellectually, yet at times have good intuitions, to the extent that it may compensate for deficits in normal reasoning powers.

A reference to "steps" suggests this is partly about Alanon issues and that program's 12-steps.

The head of a non-profit whom I know is quite smart and literate, efficient, relates well with others, and is very good at coordinating things among many different groups and individuals.

Concerning the second dream, I am not feeling angry myself, but anxious about the vicious dog and its angry attacks. Clearly there is a spectrum or a split involving fear of attacks, on the one hand, and angry attacking attitudes, on the other. It reminds me of feeling judgmental, especially toward myself, so judgmental toward myself in fact that, as in the incident related as an association to the first dream, I have at times been suicidal.

Of course, I think of a dog in dreams as maybe being about my conception of "god," dog spelled backwards, yet if that is true for this last dream it is certainly not a kind god but an old fashioned judgmental one, much like the hated and feared father remembered from my childhood.

On the other hand, chances are this ego needs to die and be replaced with one neither so vulnerable to the anger of others nor as likely to be self-destructively judgmental toward himself (myself).

As for "German," I am, on my father's side, of German ancestry, and see Germans as both producing some incredible music, literary, military, spiritual, and engineering geniuses and tending to be more into reason than emotion, more detached from their feelings, efficient, practical, methodical, lacking in empathy, and capable of great destruction.]

11/25/12 - Title: "Buying Into a Buffett Bargain"

Warren Buffett is in on a big business deal. Another value investor, on a far smaller scale but still well beyond my purchasing power, is also buying into it. I want in on the ground floor too. Yet I must be careful. The initial terms are not necessarily favorable, though of course they are for Buffett. Once all aspects of the initial costs are understood, one might be saddled up front with so many add-on fees, over 20% extra beyond the official cost, that there would be little chance of profitability remaining. Some are backing out, afraid to proceed. I believe I can make the arrangement work for me, but must keep my investment amount low in the part with all the add-on fees. It appears that so many have cold feet that, even just a little after the initial purchases, the best deals will be available for a smaller investor like me.

[Buffett is a brilliant value investor and also stands for ethics in business. He is affable and relates well with others and has a great sense of humor. So, in the dream he is my positive shadow, and I am buying into these positive qualities for myself, even beginning to own them as mine, but I am not so great at judging values and their appropriate prices and so need to exercise caution lest I pay too high a cost even for what in life is of most value. Yet there needs to be as well the courage of one's convictions, to go ahead and take the steps needed to achieve one's goals and realize intended growth. 20 is likely amped up 2, which stands for dawning awareness. Meanwhile, this is for me a time a big busy-ness, and I need to be efficient in carrying out tasks, to get everything necessary done well and in time, before various deadlines.]

11/28/12 - Title: "Survival Sex?"

I am one in a group of people stranded (after an airplane crash?) in a jungle area. It is night or early dawn and we are sleeping or trying to sleep, though it is difficult in the high heat and humidity. Below the natural tree cover we have canopies of sheets above (against mosquitoes or for some privacy?) and also where we sleep. Several women and I are in an area about 20 by 30 or 40 feet of such sleeping arrangements and all are healthy or mostly so, and we are young enough to have sexual needs and attractions, though none have acknowledged this to others as yet. I am thinking I shall have to get across to the others that, as we are likely to be here for some time, we'll need to be realistic about our physical passions. This will also make sleeping easier and so help us endure till we find a way out or are rescued.

[The numbers suggest amped up dawning awareness, transformation, or manifestation in reality.

The idea of an airplane crash may have something to do with dropping down from a higher mental or spiritual plane, as through getting hooked by negative emotions. Being in a jungle area could have to do with its being Jung-gle or Jung-ly (having to do with Carl Jung's psychology) here in this dream realm. Also, everyone in the dream was young, i.e. related to Jung. Trying to sleep may have to do with avoidance of enlightenment, or being awake. Canopies may be a pun, i.e. can of pees (potential verbal expression) or can (permission) o (of or for) "pies" (vaginas)? Sheets may also stand for shits. I think some of this is a stretch! However, I'd guess the objective reality catalysts for the dream were that I was horny and needed to pee, while the dream context was as usual Jungian.]

11/29/12 - Title: "The Intern"

After much waiting, study, work, and a crucial interview, I am given a trial position in a university setting (like a graduate program, working with students as a counselor) while also continuing my own final program studies and courses. If I do OK at both, the counselor intern position and the related studies/coursework, I should in the next several months or year or two complete the program, get my grad. degree in counseling, and stay on as a professional counselor. I am determined to give it my best shot, yet it will be one of the biggest challenges I have had to date, and I feel as though I need to make up lost ground.

[I believe this dream reflects my situation in Alanon. It is a struggle to do it well. It feels like it requires efforts and growth of more than one kind, for instance both on the inner realm and with attempts to have better relationships in external reality. It is at times discouraging. I am willing to give it my best shot. I have in much of my life operated in a different, less positive way and so may need to gradually make up this lost ground.]

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