Dreamwork: An Art of Interacting with and Learning from Inner Wisdom

The soul can be a guide if we let it.

Image via Pinterest.

Dreamwork is the practice of working with dreams to learn from and interact with them.  This can include keeping a dream journal of important dreams, reflections on the content and feeling of dreams, use of various methods to better understand them, and applying the information obtained from them to enrich our lives.  When done over a period of time, the practice can be life changing and transformative as one comes to see before one’s very eyes the insights and eventual healing taking place within the dreamer.

For a person new to dreamwork, some claims made by dream experts can seem unreal, such as asking for a dream that will help with a specific issue.  Most people don’t know that you can ask for a dream and expect to get a response which can be creative, insightful and healing.  For most people, inspiring dreams, like intuitive insights, are seen as flashes in the pan—a great fortune when you get them but not the type of thing you could ask for or intend.

One of the things that gives me great satisfaction as a dream minister and mentor is to have a person I am working with report that they asked for a dream and actually got an answer!  Usually they tell me this with awe, wonder and the joy of discovery in their voice.  It is so empowering to the dreamer, and that person can readily see the long-range value in a practice that could help them for a lifetime.

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Working With Dream Themes: Riding Trains and Planes

Interpreting Dreams

A Dream Scene: Hopes Rising or a New Life Phase Taking Off?

Riding in or observing trains and planes are common dream themes which suggest something about the direction our lives our heading.   In times of transition, it is common to dream of planes landing, taking off, or crashing. Being at a train station, changing trains or boarding a train are also common scenarios in dreams. Questions to ask around these dreams might be:

  • Who is riding the train or plane? If it is me, how is the train or plane an analogy for my life journey at the moment? If the person is someone else, does the train or plane may represent my hopes or expectations for that person?
  • What is happening to the train or plane? Is it analogous to something that is happening in my life at the moment? For example, a plane lifting off suggests the start of a new project. A plane crashing suggests the crashing of hopes about an endeavor.
  • If I am changing or getting off a plane or train, what are the circumstances in the dream and how do they relate to things happening in my life now? Am I changing a career or have I come to the end of a project?
  • Is there a conductor, policeman or pilot acting as a helper in my dream to help get where I am going? This person may be spiritual guide or may represent an actual person who is trying to help me get where I need to go. What does he or she do to help me?
  • Does this dream refer to an actual trip? If I travel a lot, the dream may be trying to give me specific information about a particular trip. For example, missing a plane may be a warning to tell me to double check the departure time for the flight or it may suggest that the trip will not be worthwhile because I will miss the opportunity the trip affords.

In any case, further reflection and questioning about the dream can bring about added insights for your life transitions. Let the dream speak to you and you will go far!

Dreams Can Forecast a Kundalini Event

Kundalini is often portrayed as a snake

Image via Pinterest.

Kundalini energy is a phenomenon of the human experience that has probably been around as long as humans have walked the earth.  In the Indian sub-continent, peoples have been working with and exploring this energy for thousands of years.  In other cultures, it has often gone unrecognized in its own right, and its expression in the soul, mind and body has been misdiagnosed as madness, emotional disorder or disease–even to the present day.   The Hindus, who know the most about it from studying it so long, say it is the powerful life force energy latent in all of us that appears in everyone in small degrees to maintain heath and procreation.  In some people, it bursts forth with great power, totally transforming the lives of those that experience it, bringing unique gifts. Unfortunately, the power can bring great havoc spiritually, psychologically and physically if a person is not prepared and does not understand what is happening.   This series of blogs on kundalini is aimed to help people detect and prepare for kundalini long before the energy shows itself.

Dreams Can Forecast Oncoming Kundalini

Dreams are perhaps the best indicators that a kundalini event is forthcoming–often years before the energy will be felt in the dreamer–because dream images symbolize different energies in the body’s energy field.  If one knows common symbols for kundalini in dreams, one can be warned and prepared.  This will be a real help for meeting the profound changes to come.

It is only one great benefit that ongoing dreamwork provides.  Another is getting to recognize your personal symbols for the energies operating and influencing your mind, body and spirit.  Should you be destined for a kundalini event in your life, you can find that your dreams will forecast this in symbols that both are common to others for this event and symbols that are unique to yourself.  At the present, it is important to learn the common symbols.  In my next blog on kundalini, I will write about the common symbols for kundalini that appear in dreams.

For further information on dreams as they relate to health and healing, please see my website: http://www.healingdreamgarden.com.

Working with Dream Themes: Living in a Place unlike Your Actual Residence

A very common dream is to reside in a home or apartment that is not actually the place you are living in at the time of the dream nor is it any place you have ever lived in. When I first started writing down my dreams—when books about interpreting dreams were not so readily available—I often wondered what this dwelling symbolism meant. One month I would be living in a tiny apartment with too many roommates and several months later I might inhabit a Victorian mansion filled interesting artifacts and ancient treasures.

It was not till later I came to understand that for me, my dream dwelling often represented aspects of my psychological state at the time of the dream. For example, the dream of living in a tiny apartment with too many roommates suggested I was perhaps trying to deal with too many people and their problems in my waking life. Or perhaps I was trying to take on too many parts of myself at the time!

The dream of the Victorian mansion filled with interesting artifacts suggests that there are interesting and valuable aspects of me that I’ve had for a long time but have not yet discovered or appreciated. A closed golden chest in a dimly lit room might represent something in myself I just need to examine to discover its worth.

A key to understanding dwelling dreams is to consider that every part of the dream represents some aspect or energy within yourself. So ask yourself questions about the dwelling and ask how this would relate to something in your waking life such as:

  • Where is the dwelling? Is it by the seashore or on a mountain? If by the seashore, the location suggests a place close to the ocean of Unconsciousness, a place from which life and food come. If on a mountain, it suggests a place where inspirational and spiritual insights can be gained.
  • What does the interior design of the dwelling remind you of? What is the mood of the design? When have you had a feeling in your waking life that reflected that mood?
  • How are the rooms furnished? What do the decorations and furniture remind you of in your waking life? A room of one color such as red might reflect chakra symbolism. Because the first chakra is often depicted as red, a red room might mean that this room is representing a situation your first chakra is dealing with, such as survival and getting along in the world.
  • Is there a problem or issue in one of the rooms? What is the problem and what does it remind you of in your waking life?
  • Are there others living in your house? Why are they there? What is your relationship to them? How does this scenario relate to people and situations in your waking life?

An interesting and perhaps enlightening exercise is to review your dream journal and discover how many different dwellings you have lived in over the last year.  How do they relate to the many psychological states you have experienced during that time? Have you “gone up” in the world? Have you inhabited houses from different parts of the world? Happy house hunting!

To buy my user manual on working with dreams or to check out dreamwork mentoring, please visit my website at www.healingdreamgarden.com.

 

Have a Problem? Ask for a Guiding Dream!

Dreams are an effective way to problem solve.

Creatively Problem Solve with Dreams

Are you beset with a question that needs an answer, and you don’t know where to look? For example, do you wonder why you might be having a recurring nightmare? Do you wonder why you have a pain in your hip but you aren’t ready to go to the doctor yet? Or do you wonder why a friend is giving you the cold shoulder but you are too shy or afraid to ask?

The Dream: An Effective and Creative Problem-Solving Tool

No matter what the issue, next time you have a problem—just be sure it is a genuine concern—try asking for a dream that will give you the answer. You will be doing yourself a tremendous favor because you will be tapping into your own higher consciousness to get an answer. Also, since you are not relying on someone else’s often predictable opinion, conventional wisdom or your own ruminations that tend to go around in circles, you most likely will get a fresh point of view that comes out of the source of your own creativity. And what’s more, it’s free advice!

People tend to doubt this approach to problem solving until they have tried it. What many people don’t realize is that our dreams are constantly problem-solving for us without us even asking for help! They are helping us understand our world and the challenges we are about to face. Chances are, you may have already had a dream about the problem on your mind but were too unaware of the happenings in your dreamtime to pay attention.

By making the conscious intention to pay attention to dreams and write them down—and to ask questions of them with the expectation of getting a response—is usually all the impetus our shy dreams need to start telling us what we need to know.

“Need to Knows” about Asking Information from a Dream

If you start asking for an informative dream, here are few things you need know:

  • The first dream that comes is usually the one that has the answer, even though it might seem highly far-fetched and unrelated to the problem at first glance.
  • You need to start making associations with images, especially the symbolic ones, and processes in the dream by asking yourself questions as to why this particular dream was given to you.
  • Remember to use one important dream method: try viewing everything in the dream as a type or expression of your own energy. For example, dreaming of a flying butterfly might represent some new hope you have that is taking flight.
  • After appropriate reflection and processing, be willing to act on the wisdom given.

For more information, check out my new user manuals manuals on intentional dreaming and intuitive meditation for healing and spiritual growth at my website, the healingdreamgarden.com.

Class: Working with Dreams and Intuitive Meditation in the Tradition of Edgar Cayce

Father of Holistic Medicine

Edgar Cayce circa 1910

Edgar Cayce is considered by many to be the father of holistic medicine. This course will explore how Edgar Cayce intuitively diagnosed and healed, viewed dreams and intuition and show how his tradition continues today in the methods developed by the Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies.

Sponsored by the Osher Life Lifelong Learning Institute, Univ. of Hawaii
Instructor: Fran Kramer, Intuitive Heart™ Trainer, certified by the Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies. (2011)

Dates: July 3, 17 and 31, 2015
Time: 10:30 AM to Noon
Place: Honolulu, Hawaii. For specifics, inquire on registration.

To register call:

Rebecca Goodman, Director
Phone: (808) 956-8224
Email: rgoodman@Hawaii.edu

To learn more about dreams, visit my website at http://www.healingdreamgarden.com.

Working with Dream Themes: Health Information in Dreams

Caduceus - Medical Symbol for Healing

Caduceus

One of the important functions of dreams is to inform us about our state of well-being, and this includes information about our physical health in additional to emotional or spiritual health. It is not surprising then that when we start to remember and record our dreams we will begin to see references to health and health issues, literally or symbolically in our dreams. Two such health related dreams are those 1) warning us of a health issues or 2) telling us when things are fine. Here are two examples from my own life:

Dream Example: Blood in My Stool

An authoritative voice tells me that I have blood in my stool.

On hearing this voice, I immediately woke up. Naturally, this aural dream which presented only as a voice saying these words frightened me. I was due for my annual physical exam in a few days so I made it a point to tell my doctor about the dream. My doctor took the dream very seriously and gave me a stool sample card which I took home and over the next several days I collected stool samples. When the results of the tests came back, sure enough, it was found that I had blood my stool. I was immediately scheduled for a colonoscopy. I apprehensively waited for the day of this dreaded test but before the test was blessed with another dream:

Dream Example: Getting a Good Result on a Colonoscopy

I am in a medical setting and a doctor is giving me a colonoscopy. I can see the progress of the camera in my colon on the monitor. He says everything is OK!

This dream brightened my spirits. A little while later, I had the colonoscopy and was awake enough during the procedure to see the monitor, reminding me of the dream and test result. At that point, I was quite sure I would get a good result. And sure enough, I did!

I found it interesting that my dreams coincided with both test results, even though they showed different outcomes.

For more information, visit my website: http://www.healingdreamgarden.com.

Working With Dream Themes: The Appearance of Deities in Dreams

Deities as avatars of energy in dreams

Jesus Riding on a Donkey
Image Via Pinterest

One of the eye-opening experiences about dreams is that we may see a visitor from the divine realms in our nocturnal reveries. I think this happens more commonly that most people would let on, being reluctant to say in casual conversation something like, “I had a dream about Jesus last night.” Actually, this happened to me several times over the many years that I have been recording dreams and I am sure something similar can be said by anyone else who has been keeping a life-long dream journal.

Example: Two Dreams

In my case, long ago I had a dream about Jesus sitting by himself on center stage in an auditorium. The lighting was focused on him and he was looking out to the audience. That was all there was to the dream. At the time, I wasn’t sure what the dream meant. While I have always been a believing Christian, I was raised Catholic where there was a whole host of spiritual beings that were held in high regard starting from the Father, Son and Holy Spirit to the angels and archangels and then the Blessed Virgin and saints for every day of the week! Being named Frances, I even had my own guardian saint with about seven saints I could choose from who had the same name. While I loved the richness of the stories and traditions told about these figures, I didn’t have a special connection to anyone of these beings.

I fell away from practicing Catholicism due to that church’s stand on women in leadership positions. I continued to do “my own thing” by praying and meditating. As the years passed, however, I noticed that the energy I held around the figure of Jesus continued to increase. I started to pray more frequently to him. Later, I came to see that for me, Jesus was becoming “center stage” not only as a deity to believe in but as an avatar of a purposeful and loving life which would well be worth emulating.

A number of years afterwards, this spiritual trend in my life seemed to be confirmed by another dream I had of Jesus riding by on a donkey, going from the left to the right. Again, the dream did not have much other meaning at the time; however, when I felt called to the priesthood and was accepted in the training program of the Episcopal Church, I began to see the dream as pointing the way to my new career: priests are supposed to be the embodiment of Christ on earth. They go through life simply and lovingly, and usually don’t drive flashy cars.

For me, then, these two dreams of a divine being represented the growth of a spiritual energy within myself. I do believe that inside each one of us are avatars of energy reflecting the transforming values and beliefs we hold most dearly. We only need to nurture these energies in ourselves so that we too can go in the wonderful directions they are leading us. Who is your divine nocturnal visitor and where is that being leading you?

Working With Dream Themes: Being Led Somewhere

Prayer for Guidance

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One of the more common themes we find in dreams is being led somewhere by a dream guide. It may be a person we know, a spiritual being, an old man or an old woman or perhaps it is an animal such as a dog or a dolphin. For the most part, I personally find these dreams rather comforting because they usually come at a time of transition or just prior to transition, when I am feeling rather lost. A key to working with this kind of dream is to ask what the person or animal doing the leading means to me. What do I associate with this person or animal? What are their qualities or attributes? Why would they be leading me somewhere? What in my waking life would have prompted this person or animal to lead you?

Being Led by Thomas Merton

Fairly recently, I had a dream of being led somewhere by Thomas Merton, a well-known Trappist monk who was an inspiration to many Catholics in my generation during the 60’s for his writings on spirituality, Buddhism and peace. He died an early death in 1968 while visiting in Thailand to dialogue with Buddhist monks. A great fan of his, I think I have read just about everything he ever wrote, and around 1980 even considered entering Trappist convent! Then, life took me in other directions and it was a long time before I even thought about Thomas Merton. So when I had this dream, it aroused my curiosity. However, even after some reflection, the dream didn’t seem to make much sense.

It was not until I planned to enter the priesthood training program sponsored by the Episcopal Diocese of Hawaii that meanings to this dream began to surface. While reflecting on what I could bring to the Episcopal priesthood in terms of experience and interest, my strong background in Buddhist studies and my interest in cross-cultural communication and inspiration suddenly came to mind. This is exactly what Thomas Merton was trying to do: bring the wisdom of Asian to Christianity so that we might learn ways to more profoundly experience spiritual truths for ourselves. I began to see this as something I might be called to do—especially working with average people who are not in monasteries to explore their own deep inner resources such as through intuitive meditation techniques and dreamwork. That I felt called to priesthood was just another common ground I shared with Thomas Merton. Now, I would like to think he is smiling down on me and guiding me as I continue on this fascinating and challenging journey!  He knew a lot about being lost on journeys.

So I would ask you to think about the people and animals that have led you in dreams. Where are they taking you?

To learn more about dreams, visit my website: http://www.healingdreamgarden.com.

Working With Dream Themes: Toilet Dreams and the Spiritual Journey

Dreams  of toilets are common in dreams.

Toilet: A Common Symbol in Dreams

One of the most common symbols in my dreams over the years has been the toilet. In dreams, I have seen twelve toilets lined up, toilets that are clean, toilets that are filthy, and even a toilet with a lei draping the seat! This morning, I had a dream of attending a presentation where I was told I had a special ability—just the telling me about it was a gift in itself—but not before I had to look for and use the toilet! In the dream I did this and then entered the presentation hall.

If anyone is on a serious spiritual journey, he or she most likely will have dreams about the humble toilet, such as looking for a toilet, using one, or even using one in front of a lot of people. The symbol of the toilet can mean many things but certainly it is tied to releasing toxins, waste and other things that are no longer useful to us but may serve some other fertile purpose.

It is important to ask what the symbol means in your life. In my case, the dream above was telling me I would need to release something before I was ready to receive the ability and the special gift, and that I could do it. The dream is also telling me that in my waking life, I can expect to experience the release of something, perhaps a strong feeling, or a letting go of something I was holding on to before. Almost invariably, it does happen because there is such a strong congruence between what is happening in our dreams and in our waking life. Writing down dreams regularly in a dream journal will allow one to see this deep and intimate connection. And yes, those twelve toilets lined up have come to symbolize my equivalent of the Twelve Labors of Hercules, the spiritual challenges we are given to do in this life. Releasing and letting go is not an easy task and is much needed on the spiritual path. So appreciate your toilet dreams; they may have much to tell you about your spiritual journey.