"Dreams are like a letter from home…"

April 3, 2006

Clarissa Pinkola Estes says
as she introduces her volume
“In the House of the Riddle Mother.”

“The soul speaks primarily in images. Dreams are one example. Although we might engage in thought in non-dream sleep, we don’t think when we dream; we imagine. The dream is a series of images.” says Bill Plotkin in SoulCraft as he talks about dreams as a method of soul encounter.

Robert Johnson in his book Inner Work says that dreams come to help the ego mature and transform and for this to happen, the attachment that the ego has to the current worldview must die. Dreams come to show the ego places where the dreamer is limited, confused, wrong, or mistaken so she can be initiated into a larger life. Johnson counsels that dreams should never be interpreted in a way that flatters the ego.

I have always been a prolific dreamer. I remember dreams that I had when I was less than ten and I usually remember dreams I had last night. Until my father died – I had never worked with anyone on my dreams. For the last two years – I have had a dream guide who I see on and off again depending on my soul’s path. He is a LPC with a practice devoted to dream interpretation, depth psychology, Jungian style analysis (he is not a formally trained Jungian), and the use of myth, archetype, and poetry for understanding our place in the world.

I have filled countless notebooks with dreams and now only write down “a big dream” or if I am working through something in my waking life – I will ask for a dream to help me see what lies below my ego.

I also have started a dream dictionary – a collection of themes, symbols, emotions, places and such that recur in my dreams.

I used to think all my recurrent dreams and nightmares were identical. When I started doing this I realized that details change in evolve over time in my recurrent dreams and it is these subtle shifts in energy that help me *finally* get the message. When I bring it to the topside world and work through it – the dream (often more of a nightmare) goes away. If it comes back – I know why.


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