For my second post on the letter D I want to elaborate on my dream theory.
After my post last week I got to thinking about how I had barely scratched the surface of the subject of dreams. You could also be forgiven for thinking that I was dismissing all dream experts and claiming they do not understand the dreamer. This is not the case.
The subject of dream interpretation is as deeply misunderstood as the subject of Astrology. Both are very often the butt of jokes; people read their horoscopes but usually don't take them seriously. The same can be said about some people's attitudes to dreams. We have them, they are odd, but they are just a bit of fun and don't mean anything.
I disagree with that attitude because I happen to believe that when we dream our subconscious self is trying to relay some sort of message to us. Often when we are awake we are so busy that we barely take any notice of our inner voice and the messages it tries to get over to us. When we dream we are receiving the inner messages that we need to deal with stuff that is going on, whether it be something huge, or something mundane. Our inner selves know the answers to what troubles us and conjures up images and scenarios that will make us take notice; if we dreamt of nothing spectacular we would pay no heed to those inner messages and the solutions would go unheeded, hence the spectacular images and scenes we conjure up in our sleeping minds.
When dream interpretation books are written they cover a few basic symbols - usually those with universal meaning - and then the author adds their opinion on to it. For instance, if someone dreams of a chimney it generally represents some form of release. But if you search online and in different books the meaning can be anything from general release to escape, sexual release, release of tension and so on. This can cause the dreamer confusion and is partly responsible for why the subject of dream interpretation can be the butt of jokes.
If you write your own dreams down and then pick out the meaningful - meaningful to you - symbols, then spend some time pondering on what those symbols represent to yourself, you are half way to interpreting the dream.
Recently I dreamt of a chimney. My mother was in the room with me and there was also a nurse. The nurse reached into the chimney and closed a little door and then turned to me and said something. What she said was personal and the meaning of the dream is very personal. If I had looked this dream up online or in a book I would not have got the same interpretation. Obviously because it was my dream I was able to attach the significance to it, I was able to attach a situation to the dream and make it fit. That it is how the cynics believe we come up with answers to dreams, and maybe in the case of my own dream they may have a point. I have spent many years researching my dreams and their meanings and deciphering the hidden messages in the dreams of friends and family. I always make it clear that the symbols in dreams mean different things to different people and that my interpretation is just my point of view, given the images presented to me. I explain how I do the interpretation and encourage the person to have a go themselves, and usually the interpretations are similar.
The only complaint I have ever had using this method came from a woman I was friends with a few years back. She was anxious over her dream meaning and asked me to interpret it. I did and she didn't like what I told her. The gist of it was that the symbols she was dreaming about - repeatedly, by the way, - were predicting she was going to find herself in a highly embarrassing situation resulting from her loss of self control. She dismissed my interpretation as rubbish and chose to accept what another person had said. I shrugged it off - you can't please everyone - and forgot all about it. About a fortnight later I heard about this very same woman having a melt down in a shopping centre after she had endured a highly stressful shopping trip with her child. She had shouted at her kid, screamed in frustration and then slumped to the ground and wept uncontrollably. By all accounts she felt really foolish and was really embarrassed at what had happened to her.
Her dream had warned her this was going to happen, she chose to ignore the message, but it still happened. She avoided me for quite some time after that, which was silly really, but her choice. The lesson here is that we may not like the message we are receiving but that doesn't mean it won't be the right one. That is also why I always encourage folks to interpret dreams for themselves, that way they will maybe pay more heed to what their inner self is trying to tell them and avoid situations like that very public melt down.
Learning the basics and adding your own personal meanings to symbols can give a person a real in depth dream interpretation. I have done exactly this and have found that this method gives a more accurate reading than just sitting going through a book, or online web page would.