Copyright © Patricia F. Hare. All rights reserved.
I am speeding forward. It is very difficult to see. I know there are dangers to the right and left but I cannot see what they are. Slow down!-I tell myself-slow down! I do slow down and find that I feel less afraid, though I still have great difficulty seeing.
The next morning I awoke early to drive to Charleston. I needed to be there by 7:30 a.m. and it was still dark when I left Columbia. Once on I-77 headed for I-26, a fog began to thicken around my car. Driving at conservative interstate speeds, I realized that I still had trouble seeing the lane lines-if I drove too far right, I could go into the bank. If I drove too far left, I might be hit by the 18-wheelers I could hear (but barely see) whiz by. I remembered the message of the dream-slow down-and I did. Better to arrive in Charleston late than not to arrive at all. I made it safely out of the rough patch and was on time for my appointment.
No one who knows me would mistake me for a psychic. Yet, some part of me knew what was going to happen in my future. And that part of me was able to communicate what my conscious, (but still waking-up) waking mind needed to clearly hear at that early hour of the morning-slow down.
Dreams are often dismissed as night-time mental discharges of energy. Since many people remember their dreams we can’t deny they exist. But our culture largely doesn’t pay much attention to them, and more often than not their value goes unrecognized.
It was once claimed that 90% of the brain went unused. We couldn’t figure out what we did with it, so it was assumed to be superfluous. Our dream-life is kind of like that-it exists, but, gee…who can make sense of that crazy stuff?
Actually, YOU can. Understanding the meanings of your dreams is a skill that can be learned by anyone who is able to dream. The benefits of developing this skill are many. Dreams help us solve problems we are working on; gain access to the information in our subconscious mind; provide insights into perplexing life situations; warn us of upcoming events or energy dynamics; and-yes-sometimes help us to discharge excess mental energy left over from a busy day.
The primary language of dreams is visual imagery. But sometimes we hear things, feel things, and even smell things in our dreams. The primary tool of dream communication is symbolism. The images we see in our dreams represent information and ideas we are trying to tell ourselves about.
For example, not long ago I dreamed of a fence around a yard I was in. This fence had several openings in it; not gates, but sections where the fence was simply missing. As I looked through these open spaces I could see large, monster-like creatures passing by. One resembled an alligator, the other a rhinoceros. They did not seem to notice me-but I noticed them!
The fence is a symbol of protection, boundary, and limitation. I was preparing to teach courses again-work that would take me out of my safe (but limiting) home office environment and into the local public arena. I had mixed feelings about this. The missing sections of the fence reflected the change in privacy status I would need to deal with. My boundary of protection was still there, but it was no longer as solid and impenetrable.
And what was out there on the other side? Two very intimidating “monsters”! My dream books interpret the symbol of the alligator as, “tough hide, treachery, primordial fear.” The rhinoceros is interpreted as, “blind strength, armoring, unpredictability, aggressiveness, and small intellect.” So it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that I was expressing, through this dream, fears of vulnerability that I was experiencing in anticipation of making this change in my professional life.
Do dreams ever offer good news? Sure they do! Not long ago, I dreamt of a delightful waltz with a man who was a physicist (not my husband). A week later, I exchanged emails with a journalist who was interested in new consciousness ideas and Quantum Mechanics-the back and forth of the exchanges felt just like that waltz!
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