Dreaming in the Beijing airport.
Whether you take a scientific, psychological, or spiritual approach to dreams, I think it is clear that in someway they are significant. I understand dreams to be a way that my subconscious communicates with my conscious mind but I also am aware that I astral travel and go to all sorts or parallel realities. I also know that my ancestors and those who have transitioned come to visit me sometimes just to say hello and other times they give me important messages or encouragement. For the most part, I do believe that everything and everyone in the dream is really me. I think this is the hardest way to understand dreams because then that means the lion hunting you is really you hunting you ;/. Then there are the dreams that you don't want to admit you have. The odd sexual dreams, that hunger game dream (you know what I'm talking about), the bathroom dream, or how about that reoccurring one?
I have always had some of the most craziest and vivid dreams. I see colors, critters, awesome cities, amazing architecture, and have even been to the land of Big Birds and Snuffaluffaguses (you can't tell me Jim Henson didn't go there too). There are even times that I have confused my dream experiences with my waking experiences. Over the years I finally started to write them down and currently I have a journal solely dedicated to dreams and messages I get in meditation. Oftentimes I will wake up in the middle of the night with a cough that won't subside until I write down the dream I just had. But the real question is...
How do I decode my dreams?
First I will replay the dream and pick out the main theme and elements. For example if I am in a Classroom and I am having a hard time with a overactive student. I know that the Classroom means that I am in a learning place. If I am the teacher, it means that I am learning to teach myself. I also know that the overactive student is an overactive part of me. I then look at how I feel in the dream. I am frustrated with the student for not participating with the rest of the class. So the means there is a lesson I am teaching myself but there is a part of me that I am frustrated with, a part of me that is messing up the party for myself. There is a part of me blocking my joy. Then I have to figure out what part of me the child represents. Well what does he remind me of? Oh he reminds me of my rambling mind. So Aha! My rambling mind is getting in the way of the joyous atmosphere I am teaching myself to be in. In this particular dream, which actually did happen, I asked the student what he needed to calm down. He said he likes to look at pictures. I gave him a whole set up of pictures with silly faces that would change and he calmed down. From this dream, I learned that a healthy dose of images I find intriguing will help my mind calm down when it is out of control.
That dream was pretty clear, but I will have to admit the clarity comes from lots of practice of decoding my dreams. It seems that the more work I do with my dreams, the clearer and more informative my dreams become. Let that be incentive for you to start figuring it out. But how about those dreams that are so disturbing that you don't want to even write them down and leave evidence that they even happened? Or they seem too bizarre to decipher? I definitely have a few of those dreams and for those I use a different method.
This is the super spiritual woo woo hocus pocus and boogie woogie method. First I go over it in my mind to keep it fresh and remember some key players or elements. Then I Reiki myself to relax enough to go into meditation. Before I go into meditation I choose which spirit guide, ancestor, or loved one I want to help me understand the dream. I then choose where I want to meet them. This location is a neutral place somewhere in the dream space, like a bench, or on the bus before I get to the location where the main action took place. After it has all been decided, I then go into a deep meditation, literally. I feel myself sinking deeper into myself. I keep going until I reach what feels like solid ground. When I feel this, I know I am where I am supposed to be. I have a number of friends and critters that usually greet me when I arrive and they help me get to where I want to go. Then I go there and I see the person I intended to meet and then I start asking questions and then they start answering. After I have gotten my answers, usually hugs and love are exchanged and then I rise out of the meditation. I quickly write down everything we discussed and that is it. This method is amazing every time. The dream space is just as vivid and I am able to navigate it from a more investigative perspective without fear or anxiety...and I always get the clarity I need.
So what are you waiting for? Go to sleep and wake prepared to learn something. I could go on and on but think about it like this...when we approach life from a victim perspective, dreams are something that happen to us and when we take responsibility for our lives, dreams are a useful tools to learn about who we are even more. I love the wisdom and insight I gain from dreaming and I hope you feel more empowered to love it as well. I specialize in sleeping and dreaming (for real), so if you have any questions or need a few tips, don't hesitate to ask at firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below.