Jungian Dream Analysis

Why Work with Dreams?

Dreams are as basic and fundamental as the body itself.  When we sleep and the ego complex goes ‘off-line’, the psyche speaks to itself about itself, reflecting its own concerns and needs. What is peculiar is the fact that we, our egos, have the ability to experience and record the memories of dreams into our waking state. The dream state and the waking state are two different realms with their own respective conditions, yet, like mind and bosy, there is a point in which both are joined in unity.

Living a life in opposition to the needs of the dream psyche, will result in conflict, disassociation, and disharmony within the waking state. It is important, especially in cases ofrecurring dreams and repeated themes, the dreamer pays close and responsive attention to the communication of the dreams. When the dreaming and waking life are aligned, you will feel the support of a larger, intuitive knowledge guiding you towards integration, wholeness, and truth.

How Do You Work with Dreams Therapeutically?

The first aspect of therapy is learning how to tune into the dreams. It takes awhile to accept there is a living, intelligent presence within you not centered in ego consciousness.  

The second aspect is tending to the details of the dreams to understand the meaning of its symbolic language. Dreams predominantly comment on your personal story. language as it refers to the nuances of your own personal story.  Like isolated circles gradually emerging on a blank screen until a coherent picture forms, the themes and information over time from dreams evolve and coalesce over time into a framework that defines your deeper identity and how you should approach your life.

The third aspect is processing this information within a safe, contained, non-judgmental therapeutic relationship. A competent therapist can draw upon previous experience of working with the psyche to help develop ‘the picture of life’.  It is a collaborative relationship but ultimately the final meaning and authority belongs to you, the dreamer.

Why Jung?

Jung is a bridge between the old world of medieval mysticism and contemporary empiricism. He is fighting on two fronts, so to speak; on one hand, the calcified religious dogma of Western Christianity and on the other reductive materialism of the scientific era.

Jung gives a voice to the legitimacy and autonomy of the greater psyche living beyond the narrow confines of ego consciousness thereby opening a pathway for engaging spirituality equipped with intelligence and reasoning.  He further develops a model detailing the anatomical structure and dynamics of the psyche to give explanatory power to understanding collective and individual psychology.

From this perspective, Jung is a highly gifted teacher whose perspective still resonates today.  However, even Jung admitted he was not a ‘Jungian’.  He couches his model with the caveat that his work too will one day be surpassed by new findings and considerations.  One does not get the sense from Jung that he intends for his model to be misconstrued as reality.

How reality is interpreted pales in comparison to actually living it.

What is the Yogic Perspective on Dreams?

To understand dreams from a yogic perspective we have to delve deeper into the yogic model of ‘Mind’. The ‘Mind’, like the body, is a substance comprised of emotions, sensations, memories, and thoughts. The Mind is divided into three basic functions which reflect the three basic energies of the creative cosmos; tamas (densification), rajas (expansion), and sattva (balance).  

The Minds of organic life (in general) and humans (specifically) is also a manifestation of the dynamic relations between these three core energies. As humans, we know we possess a certain power, or will, under the control of the ego which can be wielded constructively and intelligently or destructively and ignorantly.

Dreams are a reflection of the three functional minds without the control of the waking ego.  The three minds are able to fully express themselves thereby revealing the condition of Mind. 

It is the Sattvic energy, or the Buddhi mind, believed to be the creative source of dreaming itself.  Because the Buddhi mind is the aspect of the Mind is in close relation with Universal Consciousness, dreams operate to guide the entire Mind system towards Enlightenment.  

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