Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Virgo Dreams: Needing to be Perfect or Embracing the Mystery of Yourself

As I pondered which dreams best represent the energies of Virgo, the first dreams to pop into my mind were the dreams we all have of feeling we aren't ready for something in our lives.  You know those dreams: you're suddenly back in school and you're having a test and you haven't studied for it.  Or those dreams of having to give a presentation and you never did the work.

Constellation of Virgo


These dreams are about our own insecurities and feelings of being unprepared for life's tasks.  We all have them because our society really doesn't teach us anything about how to deal with life.  Do our schools teach us how to see the big picture, think analytically, understand our emotional intelligence, work with our intuitions or understand our gut instincts?  NO!  Our educational system basically cuts things up into little pieces and leaves us to figure out how to put the puzzle pieces together.  Schools make us memorize dates in history but rarely teach us the reason why certain issues arose in those societies and how they affect us today.  We learn math, but never how it applies to our real lives.  We are never taught a wholistic vision of how we fit into the life of the world and our society.  We aren't even taught how to understand ourselves and others and how to be in relationships, which is the one thing most of us want to engage in.

So you can see why so many of us have these dreams of being unprepared for life.  And that's why these dreams are connected to Virgo, because it is in the sign of Virgo that we pull everything together.  Virgo is the sign of the Virgin, the one who belongs to herself.  Who has integrated body, soul and spirit.  When we don't know how to do that, we tend to fall into control issues and try to be 'perfect'.  Virgo is not about being perfect but rather about being whole.

Now the other side of Virgo, whose motto is 'Know Thyself' is to embrace the mystery of who you are so you can dance with life.  And that reminds me of a dream I had at the Jung Institute about 30 years ago.  It's one of my favorite memories and I embrace this dream whenever I feel like I've lost my center and need to be 'perfect'!



In the dream, I'm in an airplane that has just landed in Egypt.  We have a stopover and I decide to leave the plane and go look at the pyramids.  I check to make sure I have my ticket and am surprised to see that the name on the ticket is STAR.  As I walk down the road, I see someone coming towards me.  As the figure gets closer, I see that it is a little baby Sphinx!  Golden, with the body of a lion cub, small wings and a human face.  This baby Sphinx comes to me and takes my hands and we dance with joy and wonder.  

Some dream, huh!  The Sphinx is associated with Virgo, for in ancient Egypt the Nile flooded during the Leo/Virgo season, so they united Leo the Lion and Virgo the Virgin.  The Sphinx is a symbol for the mysteries of Life, which can only be understood through the creative right brain imagination.  Not what we usually associate with our put-together, uptight, controlling stereotype of Virgo.

This Virgo New Moon is a solar eclipse, which means we can really leave something behind us and plant a new vision of life for ourselves.  Perhaps we need to leave behind fear and insecurity, distrust and victimization.  Take time to meditate on what you want to know about yourself.  Whatever is holding you back from living fully, let it go and embrace the mystery.

The baby Sphinx of my dreams tells me that there is always the possibility of new life.

Until next time,
Sweet Dreams!

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Wisdom of Dreams: Baby You're a Star!



Elana Gibeault
The Dreaming Mind

Just like Prince, who in Purple Rain realized that he was a star, we are all Stars. We all have the archetypes of life within us and we all have many lives' worth of experiences within us.  Just because you're not ruling the world at the moment doesn't mean your inner star isn't alive and well and living in your heart.

With the Aquarius Full Moon coming up this week, I've been reflecting on how each of us is so unique and yet the same. With the Aquarian ideal of Community we also have to be able to shine like our Leo Star.  We have to unite these opposites and get over thinking we have to compete with each other to see who is the 'best' instead of working together to make something the 'best'.  

When I was trying to decide what kind of dreams typified the energy exchange of Leo and Aquarius, I realized that it had to be the dreams we have about important cultural icons or superheroes.  When we dream about 'stars' and other famous people, we are dreaming ourselves into that archetypal plane of existence, which resonates with the sign of Aquarius, the Cosmic Mind. 

When I lived in Los Angeles in the 90s, I would meet people there who were trying to make their way into the byzantine world of Hollywood.  And when they found out that I am a Dream Worker, they'd tell me, with great excitement, that they had been dreaming about a particular actor/director/ writer and they just knew they were going to meet and be together.  Most of them had a talent they were pursuing, so they were living out a part of their dreams.  But I often felt they wasted their enthusiasm and passion believing that they were 'meant' to be with this famous person.  



Don't get me wrong.  It's very seductive to think that the intimacy we sometimes experience with people in the dreamworld is a sign we're supposed to be with them in the outer world.  And sometimes, maybe it even comes true.  However, for most of us, it's better to use the energy generated by knowing that this archetypal figure lives within your psyche.

I used to dream about two 'stars' almost every week for years.  Trying to maintain my dignity as a Jungian :) , I struggled to 'own' these two creative and activist artists as part of me, and I started writing and doing my environmental work.  Sometimes, though, the personal knowledge and intimacy was hard to deny. I was lucky to have my Jungian background, so I could see how an alchemical process was taking place within me.  I was integrating my personal new masculine energy.   Although I do tease myself about them with my friends, so whenever one of them comes near my circle of friends, they all point to me and say I brought them in!



So who are you dreaming about?  Perhaps you've been hanging out with President Obama or Michelle.  Or maybe Robert Redford thinks you're delicious or Merle Streep thinks you're desirable.  Or perhaps you're shooting baskets with Michael Jordan or DeAndre Jordan.  Or riding motorcycles with Brad Pitt or Tom Cruise.  (As you can see, I don't know the younger 'stars'!)  Perhaps you've been hanging out with the Dalai Lama or Pope Francis.  Or with Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton.

Whoever you're hanging out with in your dreams holds your talents and possibilities within their energy fields.  They are the 'star' in YOU!  So if you're dreaming about someone in the news, know that you too share their energy.  

And of course, if you dream you're cozy-ing up to someone you dislike, you might have to take a look at your Shadow.  While nobody is all good or all bad, we each get to face our own unconsciousness when we dance with the Devil.  Or the Donald!

Until Next Time,
Sweet Dreams!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Cosmic Dreamer: The Fires of Transformation

What's Cooking?: Fires of Transformation


Dreams can offer us knowledge about our shadows, our fears and our anxieties, as well as our transformative experiences.  Our dream images can pinpoint how these energies are expressing themselves in our lives.



Fire is one of the primal elements of life, along with water, air and earth.  The element of fire illuminates, transforms, creates and destroys.  Fire in dreams can express some of our fears very clearly, as well as our passion and our need for transformation.

When we dream about fire burning down our house, it helps to look at what we're angry at.  What's going on in our lives that is making us so angry that we'd rather destroy something than heal it? When our 'home' is overwhelm by the destructive power of fire, we are losing a vital part of ourselves in the flames.  What's burning you up inside?  Are you having a temper tantrum?  Burning houses down is not a sign of health.

When we dream of fire as passion, we might find ourselves in a flaming bed if our passion is becoming obsession.  Or we might dream that a candle set in a window is calling us home to our heart.



One of many repeating dreams I've had over the years about fire involves kitchen stoves.  I would often have dreams where there were two or three kitchens in my home.  I would go and stoke the fire to cook something in one, and then I'd find myself in a whole other part of the house in a new kitchen.  And sometimes even find myself in a third kitchen.  And as we know, the Goddess always works in threes!  So I was undergoing a process, a process that transformed and enlightened me. 

Fire helps transform what is raw into something cooked and easily assimilated into consciousness.  Having the fire in a stove makes for more control and focus. During my years at the C. G. Jung-Institut, Zurich, I had many house dreams with multiple kitchens.  These were the years when I was undergoing major transformations in my life, years when I had to learn what my life experiences were teaching me and forming my character. 

On one level these multiple kitchens and stoves symbolized the process of integrating my unconscious knowledge into my life.  On another level, multiple kitchens referred to transformation occurring in my Body, Mind and Spirit.  

And of course, there are the Sacred Fires, like the fire above at the Sekhmet Temple, which burn with our passionate love for the Goddess.  

However Fire finds its way into your dreams, always treat it with respect and honor its power!

Until Next Time,

Sweet Dreams!

  

Monday, July 4, 2016

More Water Dreams: Tidal Waves!

Dreaming of Tidal Waves 




Dreams speak to us in symbolic language, but too often we want to make them concrete. In our dreams, 'sometimes a cigar is just a cigar' (referring to Freud's insistence that it's a penis), but most of our dreams tell us a story in symbols.
Since the Sun is still in Cancer, we are discussing the symbolism of water. Let's look at a very powerful dream image—the Tidal Wave/ Tsunami.
Have you had Tidal Wave dreams? How did you feel about it? Fearful, worried, interested?
Tidal waves can symbolize a powerful upheavel in the collective unconscious. The oceans symbolize this realm of our collective experience.
The Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung felt that the collective unconscious represents a form of the unconscious (that part of the mind containing memories and impulses of which the individual is not aware) common to mankind as a whole and originating in the inherited structure of the brain. He also felt that it contained all those feelings and needs that have been rejected by our collective consciousness.
So having a Tidal Wave dream tells us that we're experiencing that up-welling of feelings that are rejected by our society—such as love, compassion, wisdom, equality, freedom. These waves are not just about our personal upset, but about how the entire culture is shifting and changing.
Tidal Wave dreams comes in many forms. Sometimes people dream that they see a tidal wave coming at them or their house and are full of fear. Sometimes the waves sweep over them and sometimes they only come up to the house and then depart. These dreamers often feel threatened by the feelings and changes these waves symbolize.
I used to have many tidal wave dreams back in the 70s and 80s. I would be walking on the beach and would see giant waves hanging in the sky, never breaking, just hanging there. Sometimes people were even swimming in those waves, like daring surfers who ride giant waves on their boards. I was surprised and interested but never afraid. Sometimes I even swam in those waves myself.
The most interesting tidal wave dream I had was in one of my formative
'big dreams'. In it, I was sitting in a buckboard wagon and I saw a waning Moon in the sky. Suddenly I knew a giant tidal wave was about to break over me and the people I was with. I thought, “this is it”. The next thing I knew, the wave had gone by and a beautiful waxing crescent Moon shone in the sky. There was more to the dream, which I've recounted in my book, Wisdom's Daughters: How Women Can Change the World.
All of us have times in our lives when our old life must be left behind so a new life can begin. This is the message of a Tidal Wave Dream. The old is being swept away, so the new life can emerge from the depths. Each of us will meet this change in oiur own way—either with fear or with excitement.
If you have any tidal wave dreams you want to share, please do!
Until next time,

Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Dreams of Water

Since the Sun is traveling through the sign of Cancer, whose element is Water, it's a great time to explore what Water means in dreams.
 

The element of water is a basic necessity of life.  Without it we soon die.  That's why all ancient myths call it the Water of Life.  Our bodies are composed of 80% water and we were gestated in our mother's watery womb, just as Life itself was nurtured in the womb of the primeval oceans.

There are many forms of water that can appear in our dreams.  Rivers, the ocean, a pond.  The rain.  It's how we interpret the images that help us understand why this particular type of water appears in our dreams.



This is a dream a woman reader sent me about her male friend.
I have a very good friend (more than a friend) who had a dream of him, together with Jesus walking across water, which had very big and high waves. They walked on the waves and through them like they were solid ground. They were both happy, talking, smiling. He says it was a very unusual dream and he had never had such an unusual dream before.
The Bible story about Jesus walking on water comes after two very important events. The first is the death of John the Baptist. The second is that Jesus and the disciples feed 5000 people in the desert with five loaves of bread and two fishes. After this, Jesus sends his disciples back in their boat to cross the lake and he goes to pray. Then Jesus walks on water to the boat. At first his disciples think he is a spirit, and when he says he isn’t, Peter says, “Lord, if it be Thou, bid me come unto Thee on the water." Jesus calls him to come walk with him and Peter does. But the waves are high and the wind is strong and Peter is afraid. He loses faith and starts to sink. Jesus reaches out to him and saves him, saying, "O thou of little faith, why didst thou doubt?"
The Bible story shows us the evolution of faith. After the death of the prophet John, people were in doubt and fear. The government could kill anyone they wanted to, even someone as respected as John. We see this happening in our world right now. So the people seek out Jesus and he feeds them. He feeds them by providing them with an example – we have to share our resources. They ended up with more bread and fish than they began with. It was a miracle, or at least the miracle of getting people to share.
When we are in fear of what the world can do to us, it is our faith in Spirit – whether Jesus, the Buddha, the Goddess or God – that can nurture us. But if we want more than simple faith and nurturing, we have to trust in Spirit during the stormy, insecure times by taking steps that might seem highly dangerous. We have to walk on water.
Walking on water is an amazing feat. These waters symbolize the Collective Unconscious, the collective rejected needs of the world; yet despite the great unrest in our collective consciousness, we don't have to be overwhelmed by it. The wild waters symbolize feelings that could swamp this man if he wasn't centered in Spirit.
Walking on water indicates that a seemingly impossible situation is being dealt with quite well. This man isn’t afraid of the stormy waters. He is walking and talking with Jesus, his particular spiritual guide. And they are happy, because he knows that ‘All is Well’ even if outer events seem to indicate the opposite.
This is a wonderful dream not only for this man but for all of us. He is handling a rough time in his life with faith and confidence, because he is being guided by Spirit. Can we say the same?  
One of the astrological patterns we're working with now deals with this issue of faith in troubled times. (see The Cosmic Story)  Do we have the spiritual will and creative imagination to 'walk on water' as we face an uncertain future?  That's the question this man, and each of us, is being asked.
Until next time,
Sweet Dreams

Friday, June 17, 2016

Why Interpret Our Dreams?

Why interpret dreams?


Welcome to the wonderful world of dreams! I am your tour-guide through the mysterious, magical, weird, confusing, intriguing, and sometimes comical landscapes of the dreamworld.

You might ask yourself, 'Why does someone become a dream interpreter?'  Well, my mother often asked me that question, so I have an answer for you!

I love dreams. I love the magic and adventure of the dreamworld, and now that I understand the symbolic language of dreams, I love to dig in, follow the thread of the story and discover what it's trying to tell me. In truth, every dream does have a meaning, and every dream wants to enlarge your understanding of your life -- and life in general. I love dreams because they help me understand myself by taking me to other worlds, embroiling me in interesting and often outrageous situations, and letting me see how I deal with it.

I trained at the C.G. Jung Institute in Z├╝rich, Switzerland, studied the theories of the famous Swiss psychologist, Carl G. Jung, and discovered for myself how the human psyche and the Unconscious works. I agree with Jung who felt that dreams are really messages from your Self or your Soul, the part of you which knows who you really are and what you really want out of life.

Dreams give us a larger perspective on life, beyond our ego-knowledge. Dreams come from the Soul and connect us to Spirit.  Dreams give us the truth of ourselves.

So I began my life-long study of dreams, which entails studying all sorts of ancient myths, legends, fairy tales and religious/esoteric systems that contribute to the symbolic language of dreams. Can you begin to see why my mother often asked this question about my work -- what exactly was I supposed to do with this kind of knowledge in the modern world?

Well, Joseph Campbell, the great mythologist, partly answered those questions in his interviews with Bill Moyer called The Power of Myth. Campbell, like Jung and Freud, said that myths are still alive and well in our modern culture. And one of the ways these ancient stories show up in our lives is through our dreams. By understanding what these dream stories tell us about the myth of our lives, we can navigate through life's journey with the wisdom of the ages as our guide.

We need this wisdom because frankly, our society is not meeting our needs. At this time of great change and transformation, we must see ourselves as a united world to deal with the global issues facing us. That means we have to look at our priorities and values, face ourselves and take charge of our future. And believe it or not, dreams can guide us to that knowledge.

All four of my children turned out to be great dreamers. When they were young, my oldest son came down to breakfast one morning and said, 'Mom, I hate dreams!' You can imagine my surprise and dismay. When I asked him why, he said, 'Because you have to wake up!' 

Needless to say, he still pays attention to his dreams, and because all my children still ask me about their dreams, I have a perfect way of keeping an eye on how they're really doing in their lives. This certainly gives me an advantage over parents who say they don't understand their kids! 

Dreams tell us the truth of what we are experiencing, not just our ego sense of things.  If you want to understand yourself, your partner, your family and friends as well as your place in the world, take the time to pay attention to your dreams.

It is well worth it.



Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The Power of Dreams: Dreaming A New World

Dreaming A New World




We are living in a defining moment in human history. Scientists tell us that what do we in the next 3 years will determine our future here on Earth. We have finally arrived at the great 'Initiation of Humanity' many sensed was coming. As overwhelming as that sounds, each of us can do our part in transforming this society and saving the world. We have to get it right.

We begin by changing ourselves. One of the oldest questions in recorded history is, “What is the most difficult of all things?” The answer was and still is, “To Know yourself.”

The only way to really change your behavior, attitudes and beliefs is to 'Know yourself'. Before you can change someone else, before you can change the world 'out there', you have to take the 'mote' out of your own eyes and see your own behavior and attitudes. If we are all One, part of Gaia's World Soul, than the understanding and peace you find for yourself will contribute to the peace and understanding in the world. Re-balance yourself, replenish the Earth. Then go out and change our collective culture, which is the root cause of our problems.

Self-knowledge is gained in many ways – often beginning with pain, illness and despair. Then we learn through our spirituality/religion/philosophy, through the help of spiritual healers, psychics or therapists, through body work, through art, through education, through life experience. It is a journey of a lifetime.

But now we are faced with an urgency for change. We are forced to look to ourselves to find the answers. In the end, you are the only one who can 'know yourself'. The 'inner work' of self-knowledge is done by engaging the Unconscious – especially the Collective Unconscious. An important way to do this is by understanding your Dreams. Your dreams speak to you with your own inner voice and wisdom. Only your inner Self really knows what your soul desires, even if 'Ego/you' doesn't know it yet. Trust your Self!

Carl G. Jung, the Swiss Psychologist, believed that within each of us is a central organizing principle which he called the Self. His exploration of the Unconscious taught him that all of us have the potential for Individuation – becoming our own unique Selves. Not an easy task. He felt the best way to access the Unconscious was through our dream life. He also felt that if we did not deal with our 'Shadow' – the feared and unloved unconscious parts of each of us which we project out onto the world – that we would create the very destruction that we see fast approaching. In America, our Shadow is showing as we watch the political landscape.  That's why it's so important to own our Shadows.

Your Unconscious gives you the truth of who you really are. You are meant to develop into your unique Self, although it is the 'most difficult of all things' to do. And the best way to find yourself is to allow what's in your Unconscious to speak to your conscious ego and give you the other side of the story – the Soul's side. That's when you find your True Name. That's when you can begin to change the world.

When you turn your attention within, you activate your Unconscious. Like the Hero/ine on the Hero's Journey, once you set out to explore your Unconscious, it gives you magical gifts to help in your transformation, to help you in difficult life situations.

Dreams are messages from the Soul. The deep Unconscious carries the gifts of the Divine Femine – Lady Wisdom herself, who sleeps in our souls. When we answer our dreams by working with them, Wisdom awakens within us. There are dangers in the Unconscious – dangers of being overwhelmed if we don't know ourselves. Without an understanding of how to navigate in these dark and wild waters, we might never find our unique life purpose. Dreams are the vehicle we've been given to navigate these watery realms.

The most important thing to know about dreams is that they speak to us in symbolic language, our original language which we've forgotten. People, when telling me their dreams, invariably say, “It's so weird. It doesn't make sense.” But dreams do make sense. They speak the truth about our lives. We just need to remember this ancient story language which whispers to us every night while we sleep.

Recording and working with your dreams can change your life. It changed mine, as well as countless others. Just understanding one dream, and taking action on it, can change the whole direction of your life – bringing you love, changing your job, speaking your truth. A whole lifetime of dreamwork brings you the 'pearl of great price'. 
 
Only a wide-awake understanding of life and our place in it can meet the needs of our times. Astrologically, in the past few years we experienced some intense and interesting planetary configurations which resonate with the energies of the 60s. We will be called upon to step forward to participate in the coming evolution of our planet. But before we do, we have to step within ourselves, and discover the treasures and gifts that will be our unique contribution.

This is going to be an ongoing blog about dreams!  If you want to work with me on discovering the meaning of your dreams, email me for an appointment.

Blessings!
Cathy