Thursday, October 4, 2018

Interpret your dreams with 5 questions

I use 5 questions to interpret my dreams.  I am illustrating my way of interpreting dreams with images from the Journey Oracle card deck, which I created in part using dream questions and images.

First, I write my dream as soon as I come into consciousness, trying to move my body as little as possible from its waking position.  Yes. even at 3 am!  The most trivial detail or comment from a dream character is written down, and I'm always surprised in the rationality of day how profound these small utterances from the night can become.

I let the notes "rest" until mid-day at least, and then begin with these 5 questions.

What is this dream describing?  I use short phrases to describe the characters and what they are doing without interpretation.  I do not say why they are doing or being as they are, or what this might mean.  In this oracle card example I might write:  a stone tunnel or passageway, narrowing to an opening'; only two colors.

I next ask What is this dream not about?  Do I know of such a tunnel?  In ordinary reality have I recently had the experience, or watched or heard of someone else having an experience of moving through a passage to a small opening? 

Maybe I have recently made a shamanic frame drum and am concerned for how its voice is turning out. If so then this dream image would seem to connect to that experience in my waking life.  If there is a connection I begin to look for dream meaning within the ordinary experience.

I next ask, What is the principal action of the dream?  In this oracle card example, while there are faces of humans and creatures behind the feathers, the principal action would appear to be floating.

Then I ask, What have I recently been doing in ordinary reality?  I might make a list of what happened yesterday to see if this activity prompts a connection.  Perhaps I remember seeing a fawn on someone's lawn and thinking, "It's awfully late in the season for such a little one." 

This may prompt a strong connection between that recent event and an image of a fawn that in the dream was accompanied by a sense of alarm. 

Lastly, I ask, What metaphors,signs or symbols do I associate with this dream image?  It is only with this last question that I begin to look for ways to interpret and assign meaning to the dream. Usually by this time I already have a sense of what the dream is showing me though identifying what the dream is not about, what its principal action is, and what I have recently been experiencing.

This oracle card example of a dream image has at first glance a complicated and peculiar set of characters.  Yet when I apply these 5 questions I realize I am seeing an old woman with white hair (me) with a cat like creature on her shoulder (I just watched the movie: A Street Cat Named Bob and felt great love and gratitude for our three rescue kitties). The principal action seems to be blowing up.  This creates a spark of revelation when I remember that I had a conversation yesterday with a friend who asked about "reading the wind."  Suddenly the action and the woman's expression make sense and feel like a warning to not say too much.  Which is true.  Its best not to talk about the wind.