Title: Electric Dreams Volume 2 Number 6
File: Electric Dreams 2(6)
Electric Dreams back issues are available to the public and
For an index of Articles and dreams on Electric Dreams,
See the IIDCC Research Tools area.
Volume 2 Issue #6
15 April 1995
--Back issue and the FAQ available via anonymous FTP at
-- Also available via America On Line:
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--For mailing list info, subscriptions, dreams and comments
send to Cathy: <firstname.lastname@example.org>
--General comments, articles and ideas to Richard:
CONTENTS OF THIS ISSUE:
Editors' Notes & Day Residue
Core Group Invitation Still Open!
Questions & Answers Person Position Open!
Article/Review: John Herbert and the Internet Group
Dreamwork -by Richard Wilkerson and John Herbert
==== Special Section: Dream Recall ====
Questions and Answers - Favorite Recall methods Contest
Article: On the Tips our Tongues: Clues from Dreaming
Research to Enhancing Control and Understanding
of Dream Recall - by Richard Catlett Wilkerson
Article: Encouraging Dream Recall - by Henry Reed
Article: Developing Dream Recall - by Jill Gregory
Dream: "My Missing Son" by Pricilla
Commentary: on "My Missing Son" by jay
Commentary : on "My Missing Son" by Marton
Commentary: on "My Missing Son" by Bob C.
Commentary: on "The Small Cat" by Karen
Commentary: on "The Late Train" by Bob C.
Dream: "The Recurring Nightmare" by Flare
Dream: "Flying Lessons for Kevin" by Richard
Commentary: on "Flying Lessons for Kevin" by
Reply to Bob C. on "Flying Lessons..." by Richard
Dream: "My Dream World" by Teeto
EDITORS' NOTES AND DAY RESIDUE
What, can't remember any dreams to send in to us? This is
the Electric Dreams issue for you! After my quick look at
how dream research might give us clues to recall, Henry
Reed sends us a note on intention and recall and Jill
Gregory has donated 21 collected tips on remembering
dreams. If that's not enough, we are collecting our
favorite dream recall methods and giving a prize for the
best! Also, check out the work of John Herbert, dreamwork
pioneer on the Internet and find out how it all came about.
And of course, dreams, dreams, dreams...
Core Group Invitation!
While anyone who wishes may comment on dreams, we do
circulate the dreams before publication among a core group
who simply send their comments in to Cathy sometime before
publication. As we move deeper into this project of
multiple comments on dreams, the need for multiple comments
becomes more important. And so we are offering an
invitation this month to join our core group. Anyone
interested may contact Cathy or me.
Question & Answer position open!
Matthew is taking a break to focus on his education. He
won't have time to contribute for awhile, he will still be
with us, lurking around late at night between cups of old
coffee, piles of old journals and morning deadlines.
Our many thanks to you, Matthew, for answering our
questions and for all the experimental inspirations.
This leaves the Q&A position open for someone who is
either knowledgeable about dreaming or/and has good
research skills. You will be paid twice what Cathy and I
make (lets see 0 x 2 = hmmm, feel good about yourself?) but
even better, you are free to expand and create the column
as you wish. As a matter of fact, if anyone has a regular
column they would like to experiment with, feel free to do
so while Electric Dreams is still a free public service.
John Herbert and the Internet Group Dreamwork
By Richard Wilkerson and John Herbert
I had heard about the work John Herbert last year through
the grassroots dream grapevine, but hadn't been able to
track him down on the Net. Finally, he found me and I had
a chance to go through two of his groups, one as a
commentator and the other using one of my dreams. I feel
John's work, both at the Seniornet on AOL and his many
other projects in the last few years, provide a core model
and background support for the emerging communities of
concerned dreamers on the Net. The background support comes
from his research on CMC (computer mediated
communications)vs Face-to-Face dream groups and his
findings suggesting that many aspects of dreamwork work
just as well with CMC and some aspects are even superior.
The point here is not to set up a competition between the
two. John has a great deal of experience with face-to-face
groups and highly values them. What I see as valuable in
his project is the process of differentiating just what
*is* better mediated by CMC and Face-to-Face and building
on what we learn.
While I want to describe my experience with this kind of
Net group dreamwork and compare this to Face-to-Face and
other Net dreamwork, my main goal here (beyond giving John
Herbert's work some exposure and attention) is to stimulate
our imaginations and inspire ever new forms of experimental
dreamsharing. But first a short history I asked John to
provide for us:
From John Herbert:
Most of my professional life has been associated with
aviation, but my introduction to group dream work started
with an Edgar Cayce group in New York in the 1960's. I
later attended one term at the C.G.Jung Institute in
Zurich, which started my serious work with dreams. My
desire to learn more about dreams and research led me to
back to school, first at San Francisco State Univ.
(M.A.Psychology, 1970) and recently to a Doctoral program
in Psychology at Saybrook Institute (San Francisco), where
I was introduced to Montague Ullman's "If it were my dream"
approach by Stanley Krippner, who has been my major mentor.
Progressively, I became more active in face-to-face group
dreamwork; I have studied under Ullman and have moderated
FTF groups for several years.
I became aware, however, of the changing modes of
communication available to the electronic community and I
wanted to find out if it might be possible to conduct group
dream work on electronic BBSs. As part of the research for
my dissertation, I have done test groups on the Internet
(alt.dreams), Delphi, Compuserve, the WELL, and America
OnLine. Group Dreamwork is currently being conducted on
AOL in the Seniornet sector\Communities Message area\Group
Dream Work topic. I have over 3500 of my own dreams stored
in electronic format, and I have been able to use them for
research, documenting how dream metaphors have commented on
various life situations. J.H.
Reflections on the Seniornet Dreamgroup & Ideas - by
I enjoyed both of the groups I participated in and as I
mentioned I was a commentator in one and a dream sharer in
the other. The process is much like alt.dreams, only much
more intimate. If you are not familiar with the alt.dreams
newsgroup, you can subscribe to that via Usenet. In John's
version there were about 5 participants in each group who
signed up anonymously and the group lasted under two weeks.
The group was guided through the steps of the process by a
mediator who chose the dream from the list of submissions
and the process generally ran as follows: After the dream
was posted, the participants were asked for clarifications
only. The dreamer responded, but didn't have too. The next
phase began with the participants being encouraged to
comment in the "If this were my dream" style originated by
Montague Ullman, and made popular and developed by Stanley
Krippner, Jeremy Taylor and others. The dreamer chose to
limit the replies, but was encouraged to the comments as he
or she wished. End group.
There was a subtle but delightful shift that occurred in
me emotionally that had to do with the reflective process,
the give and take, question and answer. I often feel this
in Face-to-Face (FtF) groups too, but there is a difference
in that I get a chance to reflect longer before I respond
in the CMC groups. Which is the better mediator of skills
and insight over time? There is something about the CMC
experience that is "light" and ephemeral. I've had to look
up responses to my dreams over and over, as I keep
forgetting things I wanted to remember. With FtF groups,
things stick a little better for me personally. But this
may indicate that CMC may have and inherent, excellent
self regulation valve. One of the mutual projects John and
I share with dreams as well as internet is the valuing of
self-empowerment, and the lightness of the medium allows
for more personal self regulation.
What this experience has led me to is the possibility for
using Electric Dreams as an experimental ground for
miniature groups that meet and organize on Electric Dreams
and then go off to conduct a more private and personal
experiments and then return to the EDreams community with a
report or summary and suggestions for new mini-groups. We
are trying one of those now and will have some results for
you next issue. If you are interested in being in one of
these groups or would like to suggest and mediate your own,
feel free to send in a request. We are trying a Round Robin
approach now, but I can think of many interesting
variations. What, for example, would happen if we, as a
small group, began visiting other realms and domains on
internet? We could conduct a group on alt.dream, going
about our process, but allowing other in too. We could sign
up on mail list, like Imagination or Gestalt, and do a
small workshop with them. Perhaps we have a Telnet expert
who could help link us together at a specific time, or use
the IRC on internet for a real time meeting. Send me some
ideas and requests. Lets play. -Richard
For more on John Herbert's Seniornet group or other work,
send your email to him at <Jherbert@aol.com>
SPECIAL SECTION: DREAM RECALL
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS: RECALL CONTEST!
Recall Contest! No, its not how many dreams you can
recall, but a contest for the most original recall method.
Winners to be judged by votes from subscribers. The Prize:
I'm still working on it. I think its going to be a world
dreaming tee shirt. Just send me your favorite methods and
in June we will print them all and you can vote. Staff
welcome to participate too.
One of my favorites is having *everything* ready for the
next day before I go to bed. I mean really ready, clothes
and even socks picked out and un-balled, one each of my
shoes. Breakfast pre-prepared and ready to microwave.
Glasses, watch and keys laid out.
I've already gotten some good ones- thank-you, your names
are in the contest pot - but I'm not giving any more away.
On the Tips our Tongues: Clues from Dreaming Research to
Enhancing our Control and Understanding of Dream Recall.
by Richard Catlett Wilkerson
The purpose of these essays is to explore how we can build
our dreaming recall skills by an exploration of the last 50
years of dream research on recall. I want to mention that
many informed dreamers see no need to increase the number
or quality of dreams or build recall skills, and I just
want to say that this essay is not placing a political or
psychological value on recall, but on the self empowerment
that comes from informed choices and options. All of the
techniques offered might also be reversed to decrease dream
recall and may thereby be of relevance to nightmare
sufferers as well as dreamers who are seeking more dreams.
Part I: Research on Dream Recall and Repression.
With the discovery of REM sleep and its connection with
dreaming by Aserinsky and Kleitman in the 1950's, empirical
sleep research gave birth to a new child, the study of
dreams by respectable scientific researchers. Now, 40 years
later, what have we learned? As often happens, the
researchers are now beginning to confirm what the motivated
dreamer has always known, that the more interest you show
towards your dreams, the more you have.
Still, since our hard earned tax dollars went into this
research, maybe we can get a little more from them than
just the official go-ahead to keep being interested.
Generally, dream recall research looks at issues of
*content* or *process*. The content theories include:
salience (novelty, bizarreness, affectfulness, or
intensity), its opposite - dream disorganization (to
chaotic to be remembered), interference (example: body
movements disrupt recall), disinterest in dreams, and
repression. The process theories are mostly memory-
process oriented, with the inclusion of arousal theories,
state dependent learning and the new neural net
In this essay, we are going to look at the most commented
on and least clear reason for dream recall failure, the
content theory of repression.
Due to the strong influence of psychodynamic dream theory,
a major reason postulated for the lack of dream recall is
that dreams contain things we just don't want to remember.
This is content that the waking self just can't handle or
would cause too much distress if remembered. This dream
material is referred to as ego toxic. This follows from
Freud's notion that dreams are mediating desires that are
pushing for expression and attention and counter forces
keeping those thoughts and impulses from disturbing the
sleeper. Most of the content is disguised before reaching
consciousness, but some gets kept away from the waking ego
altogether. Hence the memory loss. Or at least, this is the
The clinicians feel that the notion is useful and the
process easily observed over time. New patients recall less
dreams. As patients begin to show other signs of less
resistance to the material that the dream content is
displaying, more of this dream content shows up. The higher
the repression, the lower the content. However, these ideas
are more anecdotal clinical observations than tested
One approach to testing this is by using different
personality measures. Types that use repression as a
defense ought to have less dreams to report, right? The
most popular method has been to test field-dependent types
against field-independent types. Generally, field-
independent types are internally cued; they eat and sleep
when they feel tired or hungry and generally don't repress
or delay their desires if possible. Field-dependent
individuals are externally cued and eat and sleep (for
example) according to an external schedule and use
something like repression/suppression on internal demands
Yet the tests are mixed and not really convincing that it
made any big difference what type of field-dependency you
had, though there is a suggestion that field independent
people recall dreams a little better. One interesting
notable group. These were field-dependent people who
generally didn't remember dreams if allowed to awaken in
their usual way, but did remember many more dreams when
abruptly awakened from REM sleep. It seems the break in
their routine allowed for dream recall to increase. So, if
you are a person who lives by an external schedule and you
want to remember more of your dreams, you might try setting
your alarm at random wake up times or have your schedule
interrupted by someone else. Also, if we were to act on
this little evidence of field-independence being of some
help in recall, we might take it upon ourselves to become
more internally cued.
Finally, its not at all clear that field-dependence lack
of dream recall has anything to do with repression.
This same mixed results problem was found with personality
tests using the Convergent vs Divergent personalities. Are
your better on multiple choice tests that have one right
answer (convergents are better on these) or loose ended
essay questions (divergent personalities)? There is some
indication that divergent personality types recall dream
more frequently, but slight indications only.
More Personality tests in relation to repression results:
Rorschach index of repressive styles:
In women, the repressors had less dreams.
But in men, just the *opposite* was found.
For those of you more interested in the gender issue, David
Cohen did a study on recall and sex role orientation (1973)
where the issue of gender was shifted to that of sex role
orientation. I'm sure the masculine/agency and
feminine/communion connections would now be challenged, but
it is probably a positive alternative to explaining the
above Rorschach results on gender issues.
Repression-relevant questionnaire scales:
(repression-sensitization, anxiety, neuroticism, ego
A couple, yes, many studies, no.
Is the problem that these studies didn't control for
interest and salience, (the two major factors for
predicting dream recall), is personality in general just
not a very good predictor of dream recall, or what? Many
researchers now feel that it isn't. But what about
repression in general? Can it still be said to be playing
a role if all the personality measures we use to test for
it don't give us any differences between individuals
There are a group of studies that use pre-sleep stress
conditions. They predicted that the pre-sleep stress would
bring on repression and less dream recall, which is exactly
what happened. But it is often pointed out that this may
also be due to the distraction of attention upon awakening,
which also produces dream recall failure. Still, for those
of us interested in modulating recall, the choice of the
evening's entertainment can be experimented with as a
A now famous study (Whitman, Kramer, Baldridge, 1963) had
subjects report dreams both in a laboratory setting and to
therapists. The subjects often withheld dreams from one
while telling the other. Sometimes the therapist, sometimes
the lab recorder. Its not clear if they consciously
withheld or repressed the reports. But for us, we might
consider that *who* we share our dreams with may alter our
Cultural repression is such a big issue that I'd like to
unfold these ideas in another essay. But I do want to note
that I feel this is a large factor in recall. I haven't
seen any cross-cultural studies on this in particular, but
there are many anthropological studies that talk about the
common practice of daily dreamsharing of various culture's
were the parents do more than we who tell our children "Its
just dream, dear, go back to sleep."
Summarizing the repression study clues for recall.
Generally, it seems that repression plays a role, but just
how it works is not at all clear. Therapies and activities
we take up that reduce our repressive habits could increase
our recall. Becoming more internally cued and allowing for
more divergent activities looks like a possibility.
Reducing anxiety before bedtime may decrease anxious images
that could lead to a repressed dream. Not always telling
our dreams to the same person(s) or internal person(s)
might open up new channels of dreams that would be
repressed by our habits of dreamsharing to just one real or
imaginary person. Included in this may be re-visioning our
inner mothers to tell us when we have a dream something
like "Oh, boy, that's a great dream, tell me more!"
And this may also lead us in another important direction.
If we learn to engage anxiety and imaginal fear a little
more, we will be able to have alternatives to just pushing
odd and stressful things away. It is a useful basic
strategy to delay and set aside stressors, but not a long
term solution to everything. And so, one approach, like the
child who is encouraged to tell or draw a dream, is to do
so ourselves. Different forms of storytelling and
dreamsharing may allow us to play with material that
otherwise might be too toxic and forgotten as useless.
I feel I have but barely touched upon the idea of dreams
and repression by going through a general summary of the
empirical research. For one thing, we have focused only on
*amount* and not on *quality* of recall. But more
important than putting out a perfect summary I wanted to
show that we could as individuals use the available
research to our advantage.
In the next essay I want to move through the other content
oriented theories of dream recall, focusing especially on
salience and how dreams that are seen as vivid, interesting
and self-involving are the best content predictors of
A short Bibliography for Dream Recall Research & Cited
Aserinsky, E., & Kleitman, N. (1953). Regularly occurring
periods of eye motility, and concommitant phenomena,
during sleep. _Science_, 118(3026), 273-274.
Aserinsky, E., & Kleitman, N. (1955). Two types of ocular
motility occurring in sleep. _Journal of Applied
Physiology_, 8(1), 1-10.
Cohen, David B. (1979). _Sleep and Dreaming: Origins,
Nature and Functions_. New York: Pergamon Press.
--------. (1974a). Toward a theory of dream recall.
_Psychological Bulletin_, 81(2), 138-154.
--------. (1974b). To sleep, perchance to recall a dream.
_Psychology Today_, 7(12), May, 50-54.
--------. (1974c). Presleep mood and dream recall. _Journal
of Abnormal Psychology_, 83(1), 45-51.
--------. (1973). Sex role orientation and dream recall. _
Journal of Abnormal Psychology_, 82(2), 246-252.
Cohen, D. & Wolfe G. (1973). Dream recall and repression:
Evidence for an alternative hypothesis. _Journal of
Consulting and Clinical Psychology_, 41(3), 349-355.
Freud, Sigmund. (1900/1953). The Interpretation of Dreams.
Standard Edition, 4&5 London:Hogarth Press.
--------. (1965; first published 1900). _The Interpretation
of Dreams._ James Strachey (Trans.). New York: Avon
Goodenough, Donald R. (1991). Dream recall: History and
current status of the field. In : Ellman, Steven J. &
Antrobus, John S. (Eds). (1991). _The Mind in Sleep:
Psychology and Psychophysiology._ 2nd editon. New
York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc.
Goodenough, D., Witkin, H. A., Lewis, H. B. Koulack, D.
Cohen, H.(1974). Repression, interference and field
dependence asfactors in dream forgetting. _Journal of
Abnormal Psychology_, 83(1), 32-44.
Gregory, Jill (1988) _Dream Tips_ Novato, CA: Novato Center
Moffitt, A., Kramer, M., Hoffmann, R. (Eds.). (1993). _The
Function of Dreaming._ NY: State University of New
Reed, Henry (1995). Encouraging dream recall. _Electric
Dreams_ 2(6), electronic page index.
Tonay, Veronica K. (1993). Personality correlates of dream
recall: Who remembers? _Dreaming,_ 3(1), 1-8.
Van De Castle, R. L. (1994). Our Dreaming Mind. New York:
Whitman, R., Kramer, M., & Baldridge, B. (1963). Which
dream does the patient tell? _Archives of General
Psychiatry_, 8, 277-282.
Encouraging Dream Recall- by Henry Reed
If you don't remember your dreams, it's because of neglect,
not neurological oneirotic retardation (N.O.R., or lack of
dreams),according to Cayce. A simple confirmation of his
suspicion comes from a recent study reported to the
Association for the Study of Dreams. Gorgon Halliday, a
psychologist in Ohio, found that simply encouraging someone
to remember their dreams was helpful in stimulating dream
recall. In his study, involving patients just entering
therapy, he treated people in one of two ways: (1) He asked
them if they remembered their dreams; (2) he suggested that
they try to remember a couple of dreams for the following
week, explaining that dreams could help the therapy. The
second week, he asked all patients if they remembered any
dreams. Patients whom he had previously encouraged to
remember dreams recalled more dreams than the patients whom
he merely questioned about their dream recall. The
difference was more than two to one.
If you want to remember your dreams, find someone who is
willing to ask you about them. Make a commitment to tell
that person your dreams each day. See if that doesn't
help. For more information, write to Gorgon Halliday at the
Center for Individual and Family Service, 741 Scholl Rd.,
Mansfield, OH 44907.
[Source: ASD Newsletter, May/June, 1990]
Developing Dream Recall - By Jill Gregory
1. Keep a pad of paper and pen and a couple of pencils by
2. throughout the day, remind yourself that you want to
remember a dream.
3. When you go to bed, relax your body and review the day;
events, thoughts and feelings. Ask yourself what changed
for your today. What was surprising, confusing,
disappointing, wonderful, scary, sad, ect.? What was new?
4. As you are getting close to falling asleep, repeat over
and over, "when I wake up, I will remember my dream." A
physical "trigger" along with the verbal suggestion
often helps, i.e. pressing your thumb against each finger
as you say each word of the suggestion.
5. If you remember a dream during the night, write it down
(at least notes) right away.
6. When you wake up in the morning, don't move! Stay in
your same position, relax your body and let your mind drift
closer to your dream. Remind yourself that you want to
remember your dream. Shutting your eyes may help.
7. Write down whatever you remember right away so you're
not trying to remember that material while trying to recall
new material. Or , review the parts of your dream in your
mind once or twice before recording.
8. If you have no recall for a couple of weeks, write down
any made-up daydreams or fantasies.
9. When memories are coming quickly, jot notes about each
part. Do not worry about sequence.
10. When something is hard to describe in words, make a
11. When you have exhausted the recall in that body
position, move slowly to another body position that feels
natural. See if your can remember anything else. If so,
write it down.
12. When you can't remember any new material, review
whatever you have written. Sometimes that will trigger
forgotten parts. Ask yourself questions about it. Some
sample questions are: "Which side was it on? What color was
it? How many were there? How do I feel about that? how far
away was it?"
13. This is a good time for putting the parts in sequence.
Don't worry about how you got from one scene to another.
Dreams often just jump.
14. As soon as you have time, write your dream. Make up a
title and write the date.
15. If you are unable to recall any images, just experience
your feeling. Each morning
when you wake up, you feel a little bit different. Give
that feeling some space. It is, at least in part, the
effect of your dreams.
16. Keep your dream in the back of your mind during the
day. Does something remind you of your dream? Ponder your
images. This helps you to feel more connected to your
17. Whatever you recall, treasure it. Your dream images are
perfect! With practice, you
will develop your ability to recognize their perfection.
18. Create an image of yourself recalling your dreams. If
trying to remember dream scenes feels like fishing, then
see yourself fishing when your are recalling dreams. Other
images: open container lids to see if anything is inside,
play a TV game show, pull in ropes with dream scenes
attached to the other ends, or run a movie backwards
slowly. Find your own image.
19 Be clear as to why you want to remember your dream. Tell
yourself during the day, "I want to remember my dream
20. Tell your dream to someone (person, pet, doll or
yourself in mirror).
21. When your images are fading fast: a. Strobe Effect -
Instead of trying to ignore waking stimuli allow your
awareness to flash, briefly and rapidly, back and forth
between the dream imagery and the waking stimuli until the
dream imagery is firmly fixed in your memory.
b. Let It Go - Intentionally let the dream go, telling
yourself that it will return to you within a few minutes
and you will catch it.
c. Let It Go Longer - Let the dream go. During the day, if
you find yourself thinking of your dream, try to remember
other parts of the dream at that point.
d. Synchronicity - During the day you may encounter some
element of your dream. At that point you can sometimes
recall other parts of your dream.
e. Incubation - Ask for a dream that will give you the
forgotten dream material.
f. Lucidity - If, while dreaming, you become aware that
you're dreaming, you can ask to recall forgotten dream
Gregory, Jill (1988) Developing Dream Recall. In _Dream
Tips_ (pp. 8-9). Novato, CA: Novato Center for Dreams.
A full copy of _Dream Tips_ is available for $10.00 via
snail mail at:
Novato Center for Dreams
PO box 28
Novato, CA 94948
DREAMS AND COMMENTS
Dream: "My missing Son" by Pricilla
Note by Pricilla: I don't know maybe it was the spicy pizza
that I ate before bed but this dream really shocked me and
the feelings are still within me.
Okay, the dream is kind of foggy to me but I do remember
that my son A. was declared missing, I cried for hours.
Explain this to me please!!
======comments by jay on pricilla's "my missing son"
did you cry in the dream or waking life? who declared your
is there a sense in which you are losing or missing your
son? or your sun? or something within yourself similar to
your son or sun?
======Comments by Marton on Pricilla's "My Missing Son"
If it were my dream, I would think that either it is a
precognitive dream or symbolic. If it is symbolic, the son
represents some important for me which I have lost
temporarily. (Nothing is lost for ever.) I cry for him, he
is very close for me. I would ask a question what happened
to me in the past three days which would be the same as
losing my son. There is a lot of emotions in the dream. Is
there someone who I regard as my symbolic son in my real
life? Or in my life, something changed so that it made
impossible for my inner son to manifest. I would find ways
to communicate with the dream figure: I would use active
imagination and ask him why he is lost. Do I neglect him
but I do not realize it?
======Comments by Bob C. on Pricilla's "My Missing Son"
Not much to go on, but it would appear that something of
major importance is missing from the dreamer's life;
(perhaps a recent relationship that the dreamer is or wants
to nurture)? As always, if the dreamer disagrees with the
above interpretation, then it is wrong. Only the dreamer
======Comments by Karen on "The Small Cat"======
(See ED vol. 2 #5)
Here are some of my thoughts, when viewing this *as
if it were my own dream*. As always, this is my projection
on the dream. Only the dreamer knows its true meaning.
This dream seems to be showing me that my coping mechanism
of acknowledging only the positives is beginning to feel
constraining. I am experiencing life halfway. (This isn't
a judgement -- coping is necessary.)
The magician, through force of will, contains and
controls my life by internalizing experience and
manipulating it to an acceptable form. This shows great
power of will, but there is not much life in my city.
When I ground myself and come out in the open, a
lesson in duality is quickly offered. (Wolves are teachers
in the Native American tradition, and the number two is
dualism. Also note all the opposites in this dream, listed
below.) The transformation of one wolf into a contained
chicken meal seems to symbolize my avoidance of
confrontation that can cheapen experience (chicken,
chicken feed). While one wolf becomes food, the other
becomes a skeleton -- the "skeleton at the feast" bringing
gloom to a festive occasion. I also see the wolf images
as "the wolf at the door".
I use my magical powers to convert the two large
canines into two small felines. I minimize/reduce the
situation by turning the negatives to positives, making
the situation is now manageable. However, I only retain
half the experience (symbolized by keeping one cat, and
giving away the other).
The dream shows spiritual progress in that the
wolves are brought back to life, rather than left for
dead. This means to me that I am willing to deal with
them, but I must transform them into something palatable
and deal with them indirectly for now.
(Opposites in this dream: flying/grounded, inner
world/outer world, large canine/small feline, meat/bones,
life/death, keep/give, mental/physical, active/passive)
======Comments by Bob C. on "The Late Train" Dream======
(See ED vol. 2 #5)
The dreamer is off on a journey alone. It is late
(in a relationship/friendship)? The dreamer seeks to avoid
extremes. She sits in the middle of the train, all alone.
She keeps getting 911 (police emergency number) calls on
her beeper, which she believes are from her friend Jason,
but she can't connect with him (which may be a problem in
the dreamer's conscious life and possibly a problem that is
the source of the dream). A human phone operator is trying
to help the dreamer connect with Jason. Possibly the
operator is a symbol of a mutual friend in the dreamer's
conscious life who is trying to facilitate communication
between the dreamer and Jason. In any event, the operator
The weather is terrible outside the train, but the
dreamer is thinking of braving the elements to find Jason.
This may symbolize the dreamer's willingness to put herself
through considerable discomfort in order to reestablish
communication with Jason. A door opens and Jason appears.
He is as protected as the dreamer in a trench coat and hat.
He sits opposite the dreamer, which may mean he is in
opposition to some aspect of the relationship/friendship.
She keeps calling his name and he keeps briefly looking up
and then back down at a textbook. This may indicate the
dreamer feels Jason "hides" in intellectual interests or
The dream ends when Jason calls the dreamer's name.
The end may be "wish fulfillment." It would appear that
the dreamer and Jason are having serious problems
communicating, possibly because both find it necessary to
protect themselves and will not allow themselves to be
vulnerable in the relationship/friendship.
If the dreamer disagrees with the above
interpretation, then it is wrong. Only the dreamer knows.
======Dream : "The Recurring Nightmare" by Flare======
Background for this dream: a little background is in order
... when I was 15 years old, I was dating this guy who
was 18 at the time. One night, when were out late, he was
practicing with his band, we went outside to get in his
car and all of a sudden, another car pulled out of nowhere
and shot my boyfriend. We had been dating for a year and
a half. He died within minutes, before the ambulance
could get there...
THE RECURRING DREAM: THIS DREAM HAPPENS EVERY OCTOBER
10TH, THE NIGHT, OR SHALL I SAY MORNING THAT HE DIED.
THE DREAM GETS LESS VIVID EVERY YEAR. THE DREAM ONLY
HAPPENS ON OCT. 10TH.
In this dream, I am standing on a street corner.
It is very dark and everything appears in black and white
at first. I stand there in the cold and watch as a young
couple walks out of a building. There is a man there and
a young girl, about 15 years old. Soon, I realize that the
girl is me and that the young man is my boyfriend.
Startled, I walk towards them. Just as I am about the
reach them, a car's headlights turn on and there is a lot
of gunfire, the first sound made in the dream. But, the
gunfire seems very hollow and muted. The lights on the
car, however are very bright, they blind me.
At this point, the dream snaps into color and the
sound is very clear. I can hear myself screaming, both me
and the one that I can see in the dream. I guess you
could say the one who is stuck back there in time, at that
particular moment. I notice the jacket that my boyfriend
is wearing has turned dark red with blood. The white shirt
I was wearing that night turns bright red. I also notice
that I am wearing a long, black trench coat. The same one
in the dream "The Late Train". (See ED vol.2 #5)
I start running down the street. Anywhere and in
any direction to get me away from that scene. I look
across the street and see the dim shadow of an animal
running beside me. I don't know what it was, but it
looked like a large dog of some kind. I stop to rest and
at that moment, the dog on the other side of the street
sits down and howls into the night sky. That is where the
dream ends every time.
====Commentary on "The Recurring Nightmare" by Richard====
This dream is presented to us as a trauma dream, which is a
very special category of dreams. For a long time it was
felt that the repeating trauma dream was the limit of
dreaming. It was the one thing that the dreaming process
just couldn't play with and come up with the strange and
odd variations common to most dreams, even most nightmares.
This research comes mostly from the Combat traumas,
especially after the Vietnam war. However, it has been
found that dream sharing combined with professional
attention is a very effective in the reparation of
traumatic psychic structures. Alan Siegel, who worked with
the trauma victims of the Oakland fire, has found that the
survivors whose houses *were not* destroyed suffered even
more than those who lost their homes, and I'm sure this can
be applied to other survivors as well. One of the keys to
the return of creative variation to repetitive dreams came
from the act of sharing the dream in groups with other
community members. And so, I want to thank you, Flare, for
sharing this dream and rather than interpret or even really
comment on it, I just want to give the dream some attention
by taking it on as if it were my own and sharing my
thoughts and feelings.
As I enter this as my dream, I am at a dark intersection
of my life without even knowing it. I see myself and my
boyfriend and feel surprised, confused, separated from
myself. I observe my own identity and relationship with him
come out of a complex, something built that housed or held
them/us. As I approach my identity an unknown vehicle
illuminates the situation. The silence is broken as hollow,
muted, violent, deadly projectiles spew from the vehicle
that appeared when I approached my separated self. The
situation is so bright it is painful, and what was once a
black and white consciousness is now the full spectrum, so
piercing I scream, my separate self screams, and for a
moment we are one again. So bright it blinds me and I am
again in darkness.
When my vision returns, I first notice the blood soaked
clothes, the now destroyed protective clothing and skin by
which I knew him, by which he expressed himself. And my own
white blouse, my pure and vulnerable self now turned to red
and covered by a protective coating that re-occurs in my
dreams, a coat that may only occur in my dreams, but which
I must now wear. As I run I notice my animal shadow appear
and shadow runs with me, though across on the other side of
the path built for human vehicles. I become aware of the
need to rest from fleeing from the deadly situation and
death of him and terror of it, the horror of it. I stop. My
shadow animal stops across the path humans have made and it
cannot cross to reach me, but can rest with me. Into the
darkness that is too infinite to escape me, it howls, it
Thank you Flare for reaching down into the darkness and
sharing this dream..
======"Flying Lessons for Kevin" by Richard======
Kevin and I are wandering around, like we did as
kids. We come upon a rich women's house and go in through
the double French doors off a porch. We can't seem to find
the woman, but there is a sense of her. I seem to know or
feel she is, hmmm, that she is in her early 40's and kind
of reminds me of the film star Ann Bancroft, perhaps living
alone. We find our way upstairs to a room and are playing
around, exploring the room, talking, playing kick the can
with something in her room. I begin to fly. I recognize
this as a skill I've developed over time and experiment
with it. I seem to be able to control the flying better
than usual and rise 30 or 40 feet, near the ceiling. Its a
very high ceiling. Kevin mentions to me that he would like
to learn how to do that in this dream state. I'm a little
surprised as usually he ignores my flying and doesn't see
the wonderfulness in it that I do.
I land and tell him I can teach him but warn that
it will require that he go into that very spot he hates to
go. While saying this I'm thinking the spot is boredom.
But after he says, "Well, I'm willing to go there a little
bit," I think the spot he must traverse is anxiety. I
begin to instruct him, but as I haven't taught anyone
before, I have to begin by describing my subjective state.
I say that I make my head very light, and he immediately
says, "Well, *that* makes sense.". I begin to wonder just
how *do* I hold my anxiety and boredom and how to teach him
to do the same.
Another person enters. A young women. She hangs out
with us for awhile. We leave, I remember kicking something
on the floor around. Unclear - a bag of shit, an empty
gasoline can, a foot long smelly fish - all and non of
these. We leave through the window and across a balcony and
down a rainspout or trestle or vines.
We wander around together. Later we return and
Kevin and the woman go into the room through the 2nd story
window, but when I enter I trip an alarm. The family shows
up below. We run and go to a crowded park. People are
hanging out in the park as if it were a beach. I look for a
spot for us to sit down. Its pretty muddy.
Richard's notes: I met Kevin when I was 12 yrs old, we are
still friends as I approach 40. All other places and people
unknown. The way I usually fly in dream is by simply
willing, not making my head light nor traversing anxiety
====== Comments by Bob C. on "Flying Lesson"======
The dreamer appears able to literally "get up" when
in the place or space of a woman around his own age, and is
even able to give instruction to a peer. But when it
comes to being around younger women, "something smells,"
i.e., gasoline, a fish and a bag of shit are all strong,
unpleasant odors. Kevin does somewhat better around the
younger woman. Whereas the dreamer has to teach Kevin how
to fly in the older woman's place or space, Kevin is quite
adept at "getting up" and through a second story window
with the younger woman. The dreamer, on the other hand,
"alarms" the family when he tries to enter. (Whose family
is the dreamer alarming?) Possibly the dreamer may be
thinking about having an affair with a younger woman, (and
possibly his friend Kevin or another peer is having such an
affair) but the dreamer is very concerned about the
consequences of such an affair being exposed. In "kicking
the idea around" the dreamer realizes that if such an
affair were to be exposed it would create "a real stink"
that would alarm the family.
If the dreamer disagrees with the above interpretation it
is wrong. Only the dreamer knows.
==== Richard's Reply to Bob. c. on "Flying Lessons..."====
I find the "getting up" comparisons useful and they lead me
emotionally to the place where, as you mentioned, the two
boys have something different to offer one another. The
offering is/are the ways of relating. I find that by being
able to switch back and forth between Kevin's way of
relating to the new/present/young and my way of relating to
the rich/absent/old I get to own the whole neighborhood
instead of having to just feel like a burglar in her house.
Both women mediate for me the journey into the unknown, but
one (my favorite and old rich path) leads further inward,
while the other leads out and to newer, social territories.
Those territories are not well carved out - muddy little
spots in the park, but they are workable. And I like the
possibility of the affair issue you brought up. Just as in
the "Graduate", the Mother/daughter is in play and choices
are forced upon me. Without Kevin, (or internally owning
Kevin) I can't have both and would be forced, like Dustin
Hoffman, to abandon one and steal the other. By owning my
inner Kevin, I may not get exactly what I want, but I can
learn to negotiate both worlds.
Thanks Bob c.
======"My Dream World" by Teeto======
I call these dreams my dream world About 2 months
ago i had a dream about a big school, nothing too strange
about this dream. The next day i had a dream about a huge
lake with a forest next to it. Now here is where it gets
strange, on the third day the dreams seemed to connect with
each other: i left the school to go fishing. The next day
or soon after, i had another dream of this old house like a
summer home it was all by itself. The next day it also
connected with my other two dreams. My dreaming went on
like this one day a single dream; the next, connected to
the rest of dreams. It includes the lake, school, highway
which takes me to a big city, forest, a complex of
apartment buildings. IN these dreams my memory is intact of
my dream world. i know where i went, who i was with, what i
did--not everything, just certain things--like i leave my
poles for fishing in the weeds by the lake. in the summer
home, i have a closet full of things i want.
The people in these dreams seem very real: some are
my friends, some are strangers and a few strangers are my
friends. They usual do what they want--ignoring me or
telling me they got something to do (the strangers). Many
times there were cops in the first dreams, but i thought i
didn't do nothing wrong, and they haven't came back yet.
One more strange in the middle of all these dreams
i had a dream of a man standing next to me. He told me
something i cant remember, but with his hands he opened the
air like a curtain he put his hands out and just spread the
air inside was what i thought was energy, then i did the
same after a failed first try.
i still have the dream world dreams. the last one
was last night. there are so many dreams i had that i
cannot be detailed for i am new to this and do know what is
wanted but i will be more than happy to get into more
detail. plus i have been practicing dream control with a
mixture of mine, jane roberts (seth, channeled
consciousness),and a little of carlos castanada teachings
(the art of dreaming). i would love to here all thoughts on
==== Commentary on "My Dream World" by Richard ====
Yes, a great title for all this, Dream World. Its almost
like you are getting a special map of some kind. If these
were my dreams I would be interested in looking at this as
the beginning of my inner map. Here, The School, the place
I learn and teach and all the issues, playground and
friends that will be part of this experience. And over
here, the Fishing Pond, the place I go to relax and dip my
pole into the part of the unconscious that I've learned to
fish in, to get things from, or just to hang out with.
Maybe I just throw the fish back, maybe I occasionally feed
Most of the people seem to get along pretty well. If this
were my dream I would want to engage them more in my
projects, have them play soccer on the school playground,
go fishing with me and swap stories. I might have some
concern about the police and cops that surround the place.
What kind of boundaries, I ask myself, are they? Are they
protecting me as I feel they should or do I feel jailed and
hunted by them? If these were my dreams I would want to
know more about the man with the power gift. What might
that power be for? Just for fun? Creative uses? Healing?
Perhaps it is all the gifts that come out of thin air and
can be passed from one to another.
Teeto, I hope you pass us some more dream gifts. It
sounds like you dream life is at a very interconnected
place. Are you recording the details of these on paper or
recorder? Also, I'd like to hear more of the details of
how you have synthesized and put together some of the Seth
and Castanada techniques with your own.
Thanks for sharing your dream world. Richard
IIDCC: The International Internet Dream Community Center
project is underway! If you interested in helping to build
a community resource, conference and project center on
internet, you can drop me a line, Richard Wilkerson, at
email@example.com or for an automatic reply for more
information you can send an email to:
Three Internet Papers at ASD 12!
Dan Cummings: "The dream of cyberspace: Mosaic-based
interface to the iternet:
Cynthia Pearson: "The dream index: Thanks to Bill Gates,
Harold Ellis: "The Community Dream Sharing Network and the
regional Dream Switchboards"
The twelfth annual conference of the Association for the
Study of Dreams will be held in New York City June 20-2,
1995. Questions should be sent to the ASD Central Office in
Vienna, VA, USA (703) 242-0062 or phone/fax (703)242-8888.
Students can get in this year for only $85.00! Non-members
should register *before* May 1, and the price goes from
$245.00 to $295.00. Members save too.
Also, if you are interested in information on how to join
ASD and receive a quarterly journal _Dreaming_ , the
quarterly newsletter _ASD Newsletter_ and some cuts on
conference rates, just send your request snail mail to:
ASD P.O. Box 1600 Vienna, VA 22183
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