(Dreams No. 51-to-75)
Dreams and relevant interpretation I suggest
Dream No. 51 During the same night I dream many times that I am walking across an endless underpass. The wall on the left is iced. The dreamer is a female patient working at bringing her past emotional life, presently repressed in her unconscious, back at consciousness level (walking across the underpass).
Human warmth was never present in her emotional life (iced wall) therefore the rescue operation is painful and seems to be endless. Four elements should be noted:
- The LEFT HAND is nearly always the direction of the unconscious.
- Everything which is UNDERGROUND, or that can be associated to what is underground, is fit to indicate the unconscious.
- The UNDERPASS is used to go underground but only on a TEMPORARY basis: one goes down, covers a determined run and comes back to the surface, namely to consciousness level. Plunging in the unconscious, therefore, is only temporary, not definitive.
- Here an UNDERPASS is involved, not a TUNNEL. The difference is remarkable: one can cover the latter by car or by train, that is quickly, comfortably and with no true direct contact with the outside environment, which is exactly the opposite of what happens when walking on ones foot in an underpass.
Dream No. 52 I am climbing over a stepped road in a mountain village. There is my cousin with me and she looks so like me that we seem to be twins.
She wants me to walk faster therefore she pushes my back forward but I notice that this way she slows down my going instead of making it faster. So I tell her to stop pushing and hurrying me. At this point, strangely, I start climbing very quickly and almost with no effort. During the sitting when she told me this dream, once again the dreamer shows me her disappointment and annoyance for the delay in experiencing the benefits of the therapy.
Like many patients, she would like her analysis to proceed faster but the result of her desire to shorten times is the opposite effect of a delay in her recovery process. Her unconscious knows how things are going on and sends her a clear, explicit and precise message: "If you want to go on quickly, dont be in a hurry!".
Rather than going on, these patients stop to complain about how long the way is and do not understand that by doing so they put the time of their arrival at destination even more off. It is one of the many forms of defense that puts the therapist at tough test because it produces repeated requests of recovery matched though to a refusal to "take the medicine".
Sometimes, such a patients behaviour aims at frustrating the therapist by casting his professional unability to help him/her to recover in his teeth. Once a woman admitted that she paid through the nose her psychotherapist just to get the pleasure of showing him that he was a "bullshit"! In this case the patient was fully aware of her intention, while other times patients are unaware of pursuing this scope. These are the most difficult cases to handle together with the cases where suffering helps to counterbalance a strong sense of guilt. They are difficult to handle because "illness is needed" anyway and cannot be lost.
The attitude of this patient to analysis is very well represented by the following dream too.
Dream No. 53
I go to my bank to cash a cheque and would like to do everything quickly but, after two hours, I have not yet received the money for my cheque. On top of this, when my turn arrives the cashier tells me that his PC is broken and I have to wait longer. At that point I start complaining in a loud voice and raise hell.See previous dream for interpretation.
Dream No. 54 I hear my car starting by itself. I am afraid that it might cause damages, so I try to reach it but with no success. The car takes the correct way nevertheless I am afraid because, if anything unexpected happens, nobody is there to brake it. A fear that emotions may take the upper hand and "start" with no control of the conscious part which has the task of "braking" emotions is expressed here. The fact that emotions take the correct way is not sufficient to remove the fear that they may go out of control.
We have already seen similar dreams and we will meet others later on (see here below), in proof of the inexhausted capacity of the unconscious of creating always new images to express the endless nuances of a same idea as well.
Dream No. 55 I am in a meadowland and I see a herd of wild horses running very fast towards me raising a dusty cloud. I am stiffly scared because I am sure they will run me over, on the contrary they pass by me without even scratching me. This is a variation of the same theme as the previous dream. The image used here to represent free emotions is even more effective: wild horses. They can represent vital energy and emotions much better than a car can do. In this regard the ad of a popular liquid soap in Italy comes to mind.
A car moves on a road, i.e. a "built-up/artificial" environment, on the contrary horses run in a meadowland that is a fully natural environment, with no limits imposed by man.
Contrarily to the previous dream, here there is the unexpected discovery that fears are baseless, emotions set free produce not even a scratch. It is a reassuring message for the dreamer, a message that induces her to go on in the same direction in spite of her fears that would tend to stop her or even turn her back.
Dream No. 56 I have dreamed that my dress was stained by an old wound that had opened up. Dresses are used to satisfy two needs: protect us from the cold and APPEAR in a certain way to the eyes of the others.
This dream refers to the second need. During this stage of the analysis, in fact, the patient is bringing back to consciousness a family event she had repressed and that, at that time, had caused her to experience emotions that made her feel DIRTY hence subject to be sentenced by the others.
Dream No. 57 I have to go to a clinic to remove my plaster cast and I feel I have all that is necessary to do it. The person that had this dream had actually a plaster on her broken leg but her dream does not refer only to the status of her bones. At that time, in fact, that person was getting free from a "psychic" plaster represented by a neurosis and started to move freely, with no crutches, in all senses.
The major point here is her feeling with regard to the prospect of walking with no "outside" support as provided by a plaster: she feels she has all what is needed, therefore she is calm, she has overcome the doubtful stage "Will I be able to?" which is anyway still present in these cases.
Dream No. 58 I was wearing my night-gown. I thought I had washed it carefully but it was covered with stains. A NIGHT-gown is involved that can be easily associated to the unconscious. At conscious level she felt clean, while deep inside herself she felt strong senses of guilt.
Dream No. 59 My dog has a wound and I wash it clean and disinfect it. This washing makes the wound more evident and uncovers the quick. A dog is the symbol of a trustful friendship and unselfish love, however often it also symbolizes deep and strong emotions. In this case the latter is the meaning to be considered because the dreamer is working, during the analysis, at cauterizing a still open wound involving her quick hence her most sensitive parts.
The washing and disinfecting work (psychotherapy) makes the wound she received clearer and more evident.
Dream No. 60 My fur is burnt and I take it for repair. It is ready since a long time but I am not going to withdraw it. A fur is immediately associated to that part of ourselves which is nearer to our "animal" nature, that is our more instictive part.
The damage produced here was repaired yet the dreamer cannot make up her mind to enjoy the relevant benefits. It might seem strange, however, even this may occur in a human psyche, although substancially healed one still sticks to his/her desease not to have to give up enjoying the so-called "secondary benefits-advantages", for instance being the centre of attention and care of those who love us, being exempt from responsibilites, and so on, not to mention the fact that all old things are reassuring simply because they are known while new things (healing) always arouse some sort of fear too because we do not know what is going to happen.
Dream No. 61 I am in my house and my mother is with me. She says: "I can hear some noises, thieves must be there!". Then I say: "Lets shut everything up!". As she finishes telling me this dream, the dreamer adds this comment, as if she was talking to herself and for the first time she faced such an evident admission: "This is just what I have been doing throughout my life". Surprise, sadness and regret are in the tone of her voice.
This attitude towards life was the pattern that her mother had passed on to her and that she had adopted unawares, at least until her unconscious conveys her this dream enabling her to become aware thereof (the golden mine of dreams!).
Fear has induced her to activate a defensive closing to life thus giving up all the opportunities that life had offered her so far.
It is true that a bunker SHELTERS but it is equally true that a bunker SHUTS IN and cuts the rest of the world out. Not to mention that stress-anguish-frustration characterize the state of mind experienced by anybody seeking refuge in a bunker and spending all his lifetime therein.
Dream No. 62 I am on the roof of the building where I am living. The building collapses except for the foundations and main walls. At the beginning I am very much worried as I ignore how far the collapse is going to extend but I do know that everything will be completely reconstructed afterwards and indeed walls will be strengthened.
While the building is collapsing I think: "It was time to make it all over again, it was old, ruined and even ugly!" The building symbolizes the personality of the dreamer who is at that stage of the analysis where one experiences the collpase of old certainties, old terms of reference and support. This experience is marked by a double feeling:
- Fear, due to the collapse of the values in which trust was placed so far and on which the most important choices of life were based. At the beginning of the transformation process this fear is greater because how far the change will extend is still unknown at this stage.
- Satisfaction-enjoyment, being aware that the disappearing old was inadequate and unsatisfactory. There is also the certainty that the new will strengthen the personality structure without changing its basic values (main walls and foundations do not collapse).
Dream No. 63 I was busy with some tangles of electric wires. In a tangle there were two wires, a white and a black one. I cut the wires to put them together and obtain a single two-color wire. Electricity is one of several symbols for psychic energy. Both energies electric and psychic require two polarities in order to flow: the white wire (consciuosness) and the black wire (unconsciuosness).
The dreamer is performing a job that will no doubt produce positive results: put consciuosness and unconsciuosness together to obtain a single BIPOLAR unit. He will get this result starting from a confused status (a tangle).
Analogy between electricity and psychic energy can be driven farther. It is sufficient to consider the particular kind of electric energy we use in our houses which is called ALTERNATE as it flows along two wires changing direction alternatively. This is exactly what happens in the psychic field: energy flows from unconsciuosness to consciuosness and herefrom to unconsciuosness.
Dream No. 64
The bell of my house is ringing and I go to open the door. The door is just half-opened when a hairy arm promptly slips in holding a pistol addressed to me.The dream is by a woman that, during one of her first sittings, told me: "I have run after orgasm all my life, but in vain". She explained this failure by saying: "I never met the right man" but the real reason is clearly indicated by what happens during this dream: the door of the house is the symbol of the other door, a vulva, and the arm slipping in symbolizes a penis penetrating into a vagina.
This woman perceived penetration as a violence and a "bestial" act (the arm was "hairy"), so no wonder if she could not take pleasure during a sexual intercourse.
I know that many women will raise the following objection to this interpretation: "It is not womens fault if men make love like animals!". This is true but it is to be known that the dreamer had sexual intercourses with several men therefore it was unlikely that ALL OF THEM did not come up to the situation.
To all women crossed by the above objection I would suggest that they read a book by a WOMAN (no phallocracy!) reporting her analysis and providing quite a satisfactory explanation of the female experience described in this dream, an experience shared by many women:
"Words to say it", Marie Cardinal, Paperback
In the dream of another woman, reported here under, the meaning is even more explicit, therefore not subject to misunderstandings or questions.
Dream No. 65there are many boys, in particular I identify an old school mate of mine. I lay on the bed, bare naked, ready to receive his penis. He penetrates me and I feel something cold inside me, so I move him away to look at his penis and I notice that, in the orifice to expel urine, he has slipped a gun bullet with the top addressed to me. The whole matter seems rather peculiar to me, anyhow I can see that also all the other boys have this bullet slipped into their penis See previous dream for interpretation.
Dream No. 66 I decide to go out and I make for the door. In doing so I pass by the door of my parents room which is half-closed, so I can see my father undressing my mother with the clear scope of making love to her. I think: "Mummy is still a desirable woman, lucky my father who can enjoy her. On the other hand, who else except he should enjoy her?" After making this consideration I go on towards the door of my house. Here is a dream perfectly illustrating an "overcoming the Oedipus complex " (Oedipus complex being the attraction of a son-daughter towards the parent of opposite sex). The dreamer acknowledges quietly that his mother "belongs" to his father and it is correct that she makes love to him. Competition with his father to own the mother is over and by now he is directing his steps towards the outside world (going out) where he will meet other women to which his sex desire can be addressed.
Dream No. 67 .... then I change into two grapes, sticking one another, one representing the upper part of the body and the other one the lower part. The part going from the diaphragm to the navel is empty. I feel dying, sick in my missing parts. The habit of splitting man in three parts dates back to thousands years : thoughts, emotions, istincts. These three areas were identified also in terms of space, in the high, middle, and low part of the body.
The dreamer felt not to be a SINGLE UNIT consisting of these three organically amalgamated parts, she felt that the part linked to emotions was missing and she experienced this situation as a desease, even as being next to die.
She was keeping herself apart from emotions in the (deceptive) hope to protect herself against the unpleasant ones. On the contrary, this resulted in such a severe depression that she spent whole days keeping shut in her bedroom, windows closed, in the dark, all this taking place during the month of August! It can be added that the dream describes two GRAPES that can be easily associated to wine, energy, excitement, pleasure, loss of inhibitions, let oneself go.
What a pity that the third grape is missing, the one connected to the middle part what a pity that wholeness and unity are missing!
Dream No. 68 I am driving on a road fully covered with recently dug earth. I notice that I can go on all the same, even if this earth is on the road. Afterwards, I suddenly realize that works are over and the road-bed is made of properly set asphalt. I understand that works were accomplished during the night. I thought that earth was still there, but I was wrong.I am surprised, yet thats how it is. We have already met a dream (No. 49) like this, nevertheless I wanted to include this one too because some variations here deserve particular attention:
- A more direct and personal involvement is in this dream because the dreamer actually passes over the loose earth and does not just watch it from a distance as the other dreamer did.
- In spite of his greater involvement, the dreamer manages to keep his capacity of moving.
- The end of the works is discovered all of a sudden and with great surprise.
This too may occurr during an analysis, the solution to ones own problems is long looked forward to, then the solution suddenly comes when one never expects it.
Dream No. 69 I am inside a cell of my party together with other people. We are waiting for a possible assault from the outside. I wander what I am doing there, aged over 40 years . and what is the sense of my doing things that teen-agers do. The unconscious of this person is perfectly aware of what, on the contrary, escapes his consciousness, namely he is behaving as a child in his life whilst he is in his adult age since quite some time.
Previously, this person had received another message of the same kind from his unconscious (Dream No. 25). We can interpret this duplicate message as a clear indication that the problem has not been entirely overcome yet.
There has been an improvement of the situation anyway: previously a BABY walker was involved, while now a TEEN-AGER behaviour is described.
Dream No. 70 I was running away frightened . not by the outside situation rather by what might come out of my own inner part. Here is the explanation, clearer than many ad hoc treatises, of the reason why an analysis meets so many resistances and lasts so long: we feel that an Evil, a Monster, a Beast, a Devil, etc. is inside us and we are afraid that these contents might come out and cause our loss of self-control. As ones guard decreases, even a little, immediately anguish appears!
Through adequate persistance, however, it is possible to discover that rather than monsters incredible and unexpected resourses come out from our innner part.
Dream No. 71
Some people had died and I was held direclty responsible for these deaths. I know that a friar is coming to fetch and punish me but I do not know where to hide because I am in a house where no door has a key the friar arrives I feel I am defenceless.The time of the crunch is approaching for some senses of guilt originated by aggressive thrusts. The friar symbolizes the moral authority that judges, condemns and punishes. Defences stood for many years but now they are falling down and there is no way out left.
This is a delicate stage of an analysis as it is necessary to avoid both a not-agreed analysis interruption caused by fear and a new set up of defences. In other words, using a car jargon, it is necessary to work using either brake and accelerator alternatively.
During this stage, the analysists sensitiveness and experience play a key role. This is the professional aspect that cannot be taught in universities or elsewhere.
Dream No. 72
I am looking at a white and black photograph, at least thats how I can see it although other persons are remarking that it is a color photograph. After a more careful look I can manage to see its colors but only for a short moment.In this case white and black do not represent the Consciousness-Unconsciousness pair but a vision of life characterized by pessimism and sadness. When one is in such a state it is easy to consider the others as luckier people that had the privilege of savouring the pleasant and funny side of life, that is its colored aspect. In this case it is not useful to try and see the colors, it does not work! The only way of succeeding consists in facing the FRIAR, to use the symbol of the previous dream, stopping our escape from him. At that point one discovers that charges ascribed to him/her are not as serious as one thought. Sometimes, these completely disappear.
Dream No. 73 The phone is ringing, it is an officer of my bank calling to inform me that some uncovered cheques of mine have come in. I know, instead, that is it not a real bank overdraft, only something connected to money availability dates. Afterwards the bank manager makes a call on me but I feel I am in a strong position as I know that I stuck to the rules. Here the situation is overturned versus the previous dream. No sense of guilt, on the contrary! Some people hold the concerned person responsible for insolvency but he experiences these charges as baseless, at least in substance (it is not a real bank overdraft).
It is possible to give also a different interpretation of this dream if money that seems to be missing whilst it is available actually is regarded as the amount of vital energies owned by the concerned person. In other words: "You think I do not own the resources required to succeed but you are wrong, bear with me only for a little while and you will see!". Prognosis: absolutely favourable.
Dream No. 74 I lived in a house with several corridors and was afraid that these might let everybody come in. On the contrary, afterwards a man explained to me that by closing a single door all entries were being closed. This possibility of easy access, felt as a danger, can be referred either to the anatomy of female genitalia (the dreamer is a woman) and to a personality unable to adequately protect herself from the others interfering in her life.
The first meaning was already examined in Dream No.64 to which I would ask you to refer.
The second meaning is self-explanatory and does not require many comments.
As to the remainder, the man explaining and reassuring, very likely it is the analyst seen in his reassuring job.
This dream represents a first step towards an improvement in the quality of life of the dreamer but it is not the point of arrival of the therapy. A therapy may be considered over only when the feeling of danger disappears. During the intermediate stage, where this dream is placed, this feeling is still there and the life of the woman improves only because somebody shows her a way to protect herself.
Dream No. 75 I have bought a new garden and now I am the owner of a new very large garden. I go all around it and I find it in quite a good condition however I want to make some improvements and complete some details.
A garden represents the inner life of a person, with its flowers or its weeds. It is necessary to distinguish a garden from a field as the latter provides what is necessary to satisfy the material needs of our body while a garden satisfies our spiritual and subtle needs, aestetic and voluptuary needs: colors, scents, shapes.
In this case, the female dreamer feels that her inner life has become richer and wider however she intends to do something else and something better.
The importance of this dream can be fully assessed taking into consideration that it is by the same dreamer as previous dream.
Previously there was an escape from the outside world that was felt as dangerous, and safety was found only in shutting herself up.
Now the dreamer looks at the outer world and she feels she can even improve it, which means that she shifted from an UNDERGOING position to an ACTING postion.
A logician to the utmost should not be surprised if I wrote that a garden symbolizes the INNER life before whilst now I have just written that it symbolizes the OUTER world. As a matter of fact, a symbol may have more than a single meaning. These meanings may be as well in conflict each another and coexist at the same time. Fire, for example, may be PURIFYING, DESTROYING, REGENERATING, symbol of PASSION, PAIN, PUNISHMENT (hell), HEAT, LIFE, DIVINITY (the burning bush of Moses on mount Sinai) and even more .