Saturday, July 25, 2015

It's All About Me!


The Dream:
Clark and I are acting in a play. At one point he says, very melodramatically, “Tell me you love me!” I say, “I love you!” Then he says, “Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me!” He is doing a parody of self-involvement. I laugh and laugh.

Interpretation
: We had just spent an exhausting couple of days visiting one of his childhood friends, a woman who displayed a relentless self-involvement. The dream helped me get over my annoyance at the experience by providing the tension release of uncontrolled laughter.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A New Model


The Dream: A long line of gay couples, all women, are getting married. They are on a platform that looks like a model's runway. They file past and are married by the time they reach the spot where I stand. Each couple is accompanied by a friend, so I'm not sure which of the three is the newly married couple. All women are tall.

Interpretation: This dream was triggered by a  gay friend's wedding. This type of marriage is a new model. The friends that accompany the newly married couples represent social acceptance, and their tallness symbolizes that now all loving relationships can “stand tall.”

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Thirst


The Dream:
This dream builds on and resolves the two previous. I'm at a banquet with Clark and others. I keep refilling my wine glass. I don't know why I'm drinking so much. At one point I take a nearly empty bottle and attempt to drain it into my already full glass. Clark gently admonishes me with a comment on how much I'm drinking. I know it's too much, yet it seems a sort of compulsion. To try to justify my behavior I say, “The bottle was almost empty. I was just trying to finish it off.” I show him that there is very little wine left in the bottle. Nevertheless, there is more than can make it into my glass.

Interpretation: In Hunger there is not enough to satisfy basic needs. In Thirst  there is too much, more than I can consume even though I greedily attempt it. The night before this dream I had watched one of Jung's clips on Death, in which he says we must live life as though it continues. To think so makes us feel better and live better, so it is the natural thing to do. Hearing his thoughts between the two dreams changed something in my thinking. From a place of no satisfaction I go to a place of excess, more than I can safely indulge in, or take in.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Hunger


The Dream:
This dream centered on hunger that can't be satisfied. In the first fragment, a man wants to have sex with two women. The woman who's mind we're in wants marriage in return, or at least fidelity, but neither is on offer. The man more or less says, “All I want is sex; I'll get it from you or from someone else.” The woman acquiesces.

In the second fragment, a woman cannot satisfy her hunger, even though food is available. It is said, in explanation, that she had once gone through a period of starvation and could not now feel satiated, no matter how much she ate.

Interpretation:
Keeping in mind the previous dream, I see religious overtones here. I thought of the Biblical phrase about those who hunger and thirst after righteousness. My rejection of the religion I grew up in has left me hungry for spiritual nourishment. The dream uses the carnal, food and sex, as symbols of this need. The first segment of the dream points out that the thing on offer doesn't fulfill my needs. The man's demand for sex on his very unpleasant terms stands for my reaction to my religious experience. Yet as the dream character I acquiesce. It seems I've decided this pathetic offer is better than nothing.

In the second fragment, the dream points out that there is plenty of sustenance available. Just because I “starved” in the past doesn't mean I must go hungry now.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Rape


The Dream: A woman is friends with a man. We are living in a shared space. I leave them to go into another room. Soon I hear the woman screaming for me, horribly distressed. I find her in the bathroom. The toilet seat is up and she has immersed her bottom in the water, which is tinged with blood. It's clear to me that she has been raped by her “loving” friend. Shall I call 911?” I say. She doesn't answer. “I'll call 911,” I say, leaving her to look for a phone. This nightmare awakens me.

Interpretation
: At the time of this dream I belonged to a book club sponsored by a Christian church. The meeting devolved into a discussion of the participants' personal beliefs. As I listened to others talk about “faith” and “belief” and “Christianity” I realized how alien I find these ideas. While the dream was triggered by media stories about rape, and certainly reflects the vulnerability that women face, the underlying issue for me is the rape of the intellect that I feel as a participant in a Christian group. I feel I'm not allowed to express my honest thoughts. This leaves me feeling my intellect (logical mind) has been raped; who I am (my self) denied.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

All In It Together


The Dream
: A woman has been tasked with beating a man who lies face down, prone. He is covered with a blanket, and she must beat him with a whip until his blood runs black. She is appalled at this thing she is doing, but does it anyway. The power that set her to her dismal task is Christian.

I am an onlooker, also horrified. At some point his blood does run black, and she begins to rail against Christianity for having one set of rules for its followers while the hierarchy behaves quite differently. She is very angry, but never questions her own acquiescence, in other words, why she did as she was told rather than follow her conscience.

Interpretation
: First I'll look at some things that triggered this dream: At the time of the dream I was reading Eric Kandel's The Age of Insight, and was at the place where Freud analyzes one of his own dreams and feels it has pointed out that he has suppressed his own guilt, just as my dream beater does. This was around the time of the horrific terrorist shooting at a mall in Kenya, following close on the heels of a shooting by a mentally ill person of people at an American Navy installation.

I feel guilty when I hear about these, and other, world situations, as well as disappointment and anger that the country I was brought up to believe had some sort of moral superiority now appears as venal and self-serving as the rest of the world. In the dream, Christianity stands for bankrupt values and hypocrisy on a national scale, and I ponder my own guilt as a citizen, even though I, like the dream actor, go along with it and feel powerless to stop it. I feel forced, as she does, to participate in things I find morally reprehensible. The dream implies my guilt and asks me why I don't  stop.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

In Memoriam


The Dream
: I had this dream the night of my brother Greg's birthday. My other brother Nick and I are at a memorial service for  Greg. We are sitting about four rows back, on the left side of the chapel. I call it a chapel: it is nonsectarian, like the place where Greg's actual memorial was held. We are separated by some others, not sitting next to each other. I hear Nick weep. I weep as well. We don't interact.

Interpretation: Nick and I, united in a grief we cannot talk about. We are separated, yet also together, in the same place. Kubler Ross's 4th stage of grief (we are 4 rows back) is depression, sadness. My unconscious is telling me where I am in the grieving process.