The meaning of Temperature in dream | Dream interpretation
(see Fire, Health, Ice, Snow, Sun)
Blisteringly hot: A similarly heated situation exists in the waking hours, from which you need to protect yourself or you will get hurt.
Frigid: Emotional apathy or distance. Whether this pertains to you or someone else will become more clear by examining the rest of the dream.
Warmth: Kindness, compassion, friendship, and other warm feelings that are not forced or coerced.
Lukewarm: Indifference or nonchalance with regard to a specific person, situation, activity, or goal.
If you are very hot or very cold in your dream, you first of all need to consider whether your bedroom is too hot or too cold and your unconscious has simply incorporated your physical reaction in your dreams.
If this is not the case, the dream may be pointing to your frame of mind. Extreme heat could indicate unpleasant or difficult circumstances, or a person you consider hot or sexy.
Feeling hot can also warn you of impending danger, as in ’finding your self in a hot spot’ or of burning passions, such as lust or anger. Your unconscious may be warning you to remove yourself from a source of potential danger.
If the atmosphere is humid in your dream this indicates that you feel as if your waking situation is oppressive. If, however you are aware of feeling pleasantly warm, this is a positive sign indicating that you are feeling content in your waking life; if you are shivering with the cold, the opposite is true. In waking life you may feel emotionally cold or perhaps someone is being cold to you. Alternatively, do you feel as if you have to act ruthlessly, as in ’cold- bloodedly’, or is it fear that is making your blood run cold? If you feel uncharacteristically hot when it is cold outside, this suggests your warmth and optimism is overcoming the coldness and hostility in which you find yourself; but if you feel cold when it is warm outside, this suggests you are cutting your self off from emotional interaction in some way.
Clouds and Rain
The intensity of one’s comfort or discomfort in a given situation
A windy and cold weather in a dream means aggravation of one’s poverty.
If it is sunny and cold, and if ones sees himself sitting in the sun, then the condition of his poverty will be removed.
If one sees himself in a dream under the heat of the sun and seeks refuge away from it in the shade, it means that his stress and sadness will dissipate.
If he sees that dream during the summertime, it means prosperity. Ifone sees himself seeking a fire or a smoke to warm himself with it in a dream means that one is seeking ajob that entails danger.
If it is burning coal which he seeks for warmth in the dream, then it means that he will swindle money from an orphan. Cold weather in winter is insignificant and in the summer in a dream it means that one’s travel plans will not take place.
(Also see Cold weather)... Islamic Dream Interpretation
The lamp itself represents one’s soul, the oil represents one’s blood, and the wick represents his temperature. Once the wick is used up, and the oil is burned in the dream, it means one’s death. Ifone sees the wick in good condition, and the oil clean and radiant in the dream, it means that he will enjoy a life of purity and happiness.
If the wick is black and the oil is murky in the dream, it means experiencing a wretched life.
If the stand itself has some deficiencies in the dream, it means an illness in one’s body.
If the stand is strong and clean, it means that one’s body and blood are free from illness.
A broken lamp stand in a dream represents a terminal illness.
(Also see Lampl; Wick)... Islamic Dream Interpretation
A village in a dream also could represent ants’ underground nest or colony, while an anthill in a dream represents a village.
If a village is completely destroyed by fire, or floods, or freezing temperature, or by locusts, or plagues in one’s dream, it means suffering under the oppression of an unjust ruler or a tyrant, or it could mean destroying an anthill. Moving from a village into a city in a dream means leaving one’s toiling and hardships behind him. Moving from a city into a village means the opposite, and signifies leaving comfort and safety to meet with discomfort and fear.
(Also see City)... Islamic Dream Interpretation
An idea of ‘reality’ in the sense of what is probable, and what would be dangerously out of norm, has been formed. We gather information in ways little recognised. How our parents relate to their environment and to other people is all recorded and leamt from, bringing about enormous ‘programming’ affecting how we act in similar circumstances.
As explained in the entry on the dream as spiritual guide, we have great ability in ‘reading’ symbols, ritual, an, music, body language, architecture, drama, and extracting ‘meaning’ from them. So we have immense stores of information from these sources. Work done with people exploring their dreams over a long period suggests that some of these information resources are never focused on enough to make conscious what we have actually learnt. Sometimes it is enough simply to ask oneself a question to begin to focus some of these resources. Such questions as what social attitude and response to authority did I learn at school? What feeling reaction do I get when I am in the presence of someone I know well? These may help to bring to awareness aspects of information gathered but remaining unconscious. These unfocused, or unconscious, areas of information can explain why we have apparently irrational feeling responses to some people or situations.
the body A lot of what we call the unconscious are basic physiological and psychological functions.
For instance in a modern house, when we flush the toilet, we do not have to bring a bucket of water and fill the cistern again.
A self regulating mechanism allows water to flow in and switches it off when full. This is a clever built-in function that had to be done manually at one time. Nowadays we have built into some dwellings fire sprinklers or burglar alarms. Through repeated actions over thousands or millions of years, many basic functions, or functions only switched on in emergencies, have been built into our being. We do not need to think about them, just as we do not have to give awareness to the fire sprinkling system or toilet each time we walk through a room or flush the toilet. They are therefore unconscious.
Research with animals in connection with rewards and conditioned reflexes has shown that by gradually leading an animal towards a certain performance by rewarding it each time it gets nearer to the goal, it can do the most amazing things. It can increase the circulation of blood to its ear, slow its heart, and in fact influence body functions which were thought to be completely involuntary. Where human beings have learnt to use some of these techniques—such as raising the temperature of an arm at will, or helping to increase the efficiency of the immune system—the actual processes still remain unconscious. In general, however, the body’s functions are thought to be outside our awareness, and so are one of the areas of the unconscious. ... A Guide to Dreams and Sleep Experiences
A name on the label of goods may depict quality to us.
A face can represent love or brutality. In the struggle towards human awareness, and its increasingly subtle use of symbols such as language to think and express with, there must have been stages of development. This is a side of ‘history’ seldom given attention, yet very important. Perhaps our dream thinking’ is using an earlier form of using symbols, one which might have been more an everyday event prior to language.
Even though we exist as an individual integrated with today’s world, our earlier levels of thinking still exist. Unconsciously we still see the thermometer as temperature; the car as status, independence or ease in getting to work; inside our house as an expression of ourself—if we didn’t we would not take pains to make it nice for guests. Through these unconscious feeling connections or symbolic views we have of things, dreams create their store of images and scenes. Processing a dream is an attempt to discover what values we ourself unconsciously place upon the people, animals, objects and situations around us. See unconscious. ... A Guide to Dreams and Sleep Experiences
If the temperature is falling, feelings are cooling off.... Little Giant Encyclopedia
A clinical thermometer would portray our emotional warmth, whereas an external thermometer would suggest our intellectual abilities.
2- Psychologically we sometimes need an external evaluation as to where we are coming from.
A thermometer would be a reassurance device.
3- Just as a thermometer measures temperature, the way we handle situations around us will give indications of our spiritual health and ability.... Ten Thousand Dream Dictionary
Changing tides: Among the Teutonic people, each tide carried different meanings that may apply to your dream.
The tide occurring just before sunup is one of introspection, while the one at dawn bears fertile waves. Noon tides speak of tenacity, dusk tides bring transformation, the night tide edifies, and the one occurring at midnight heals.
An ocean: The earth’s womb and beginnings of all humankind. Also representative of the vast subconscious, superconscious, or Jungian Collective Unconscious (see Abyss).
Among Native Americans, water appearing in dreams indicates your spiritual state.
For example, if the water is flowing smoothly, your spirit is calm and moving in a natural direction.
Moving water: Hie seen and unseen ebb and flow of all energies.
Baptism: New life, forgiveness toward yourself, and renewed purity’ of thought and actions (see Baby).
Bathing: Getting rid of your figurative “dirt” like old habits, guilt, anger, and even sexual repression (e.g., feeling “dirty”).
Hot water: Trouble s afoot, so look for the wellhead (see Temperature).
Drowning in water: Overwhelming circumstances, problems, or emotions that threaten to defeat your efforts or sense of individuality. Esoterically, this may also reflect a memory from a past life experience (see Choking, Suffocation).
Floating upon: Dependence on your feminine nature or a mother figure. Alternatively, skimming the surface of spiritual potentialities without ever really diving in and experiencing that aspect of self.
Stagnant water: Something, often a situation, that is unhealthy for you to the point where it causes a standstill in personal growth and in your quest for wholeness.
Shallow water represents a similarly frivolous personality that avoids delving into any aspect of life too deeply. Alternatively, this can represent a fear of confronting the depths of your own suhconscious.
Tidal waves: Powerful emotions or instincts that you have let build up to a critical mass. This dream reveals the need to express those things before they come crashing over the floodgates.
Surfing on water: Taking control of, and accepting the power in, the feminine aspects of self and the Universe. Also maintaining a rather haphazard balance between the intuitive nature (the water) and the conscious self (the surfer).
A geyser: A sudden, unanticipated outpouring of creativity, goodness, inspiration, spiritual gifts, or whatever.
Wearing a life preserver in the water represents getting a second chance at something. Grab it before it gets away!
Ripples appearing on the water’s surface indicate the waves of energy we send out without even knowing it, similar to a web. This will eventually touch everything and everyone because you are part of the network of life.
Lakes: As the abode of several magical creatures, including the Lady of the Lake and water nymphs, dream lakes reflect the search for the wonders that lie just beyond the surface of reality. What does the surface of the lake cover? Are you fishing here, thereby trying to catch a little magic?... The Language of Dreams
The barometer is destroyed: a change in your life can’t be avoided. Examine who or what is putting you under so much pressure in real life and resolve the situation.... Dreamers Dictionary
For example, if you were running too hot and heavy, allowing passion and impetuousness to overheat you, then you instinctively know to cool off in order to achieve balance.... Strangest Dream Explanations
If you dream of the temperature being cold, then this is your emotional barometer alerting you that you’ve been getting the cold shoulder or that you’ve been experiencing emotionally chilliness and a loss of connection.... Strangest Dream Explanations
A boil as in a skin condition signifies an infection or contamination of a cherished idea.... Dream Meanings of Versatile
If the bath was cold or too hot you will have to revise some favorite plan, but if the temperature was pleasantly warm, your current expectations will be realized.
See also Water.... The Complete Guide to Interpreting Your Dreams
The lower the temperature was in your dream the more comfortable and secure will be your estate in life.
However, if your dream involved yourself or anyone else having a cold, or getting a chill, you are being warned to guard your credit.... The Complete Guide to Interpreting Your Dreams
in the personal affairs of others at the present time; washing in a machine indicates an unexpected vacation or change of location.
To dream of washing your hands and/or face predicts a pleasant new friendship in the offing.... The Complete Guide to Interpreting Your Dreams
It is also possible that the presence of a thermometer in dreams reflects a concern with determining specific facts, or perhaps it alludes that you are trying to “take the temperature” of some new project or idea that you have in mind. On the other hand, you should not forget that the thermometer contains mercury, so it may be interesting to investigate the role of this god in Roman mythology or the influence of the planet in astrology.... The Big Dictionary of Dreams
The desire to cool the air by artificial means is symbolic of your ability to regulate such elements of life at your own whim.
The larger the air-conditioning unit, the greater the sense of control that is being expressed. In this way, a window unit is reflecting a modicum of control, whereas central air relates to a more comprehensive desire to rein in your passions.
If the air conditioning is broken, such a dream relates to the inability to keep cool under pressure.... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
The call of a hospital emergency is known as a “code blue.” Before a brochure or magazine page is printed, the early version used to finalize the design and layout is known as the “blue line.” When blood circulation diminishes due to a drop in body temperature, the lips will turn blue and communication will be hindered. These are but a few examples that may not relate to a specific image; however, when the color blue is prominent in your dream, incorporate issues of communication into your interpretation.
(See Colors.)... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
If mold appears in a dream, you are being called to take a look at the impact of ignoring certain matters for long periods of time.... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
The preservation of things that you desire is what is being expressed by the refrigerator in your dream, so pay particular attention to both what is inside of it and the state that the machine itself is in. Both of these will add clues to your interpretation.... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
If you are sweating in your dream, your interpretation may uncover an unconscious message that some life experience is posing a threat to your equilibrium and balance. Heat represents a visceral reaction to perceived danger in the form of anger or aggression. Sweating represents your desire to restore balance from whatever might be the cause of those feelings of threat. Sweating also serves to rid the body of toxins, so dream-sweat may point to the presence of underlying thoughts, ideas, or behaviors that are ultimately poisoning your sense of well- being.... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
The devastation that they leave in their wake is almost unfathomable, but there is also an element of creation present, as their symbolic meaning lies in their formation.
A tornado is the result of two air masses of very different temperatures colliding with each other. Under the right conditions, these two systems meet up with each other and each tries to force the other to submit to their direction of movement. As a result of this conflict, the two form a third energetic system that combines the force of both, creating a tornado. Resistance is at the essence of the interpretation of this image, so when a tornado appears in a dream, look for areas in your life where you may be in resistance. In addition, the chaotic nature of a tornado’s path makes this a perfect expression of waking-life chaos. This dream may be indicating an unconscious reaction to the unpredictable nature of how things are unfolding around you, especially in areas where you are facing direct opposition to your desires.... Complete Dictionary of Dreams
First letter of the alphabet. The corresponding letter of the Greek alphabet is alpha. Alpha and omega, the last letter of the Greek alphabet, symbolize the beginning and the end and, in the New Testament, Christ. In musical notation, the letter is the symbol of a note in the scale. The symbol can also refer to a blood group, a vitamin, the months August and April, or any word, place, sound or name represented by the letter ‘a’. In education, a grade of A typically represents the highest score that students can achieve.
The Letter B
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘b’. The second in a series. Something shaped like the letter B. The second best or second highest in quality or rank. A mark of‘B’ on a term paper. A written or printed mark representing this note. A string, key, or pipe tuned to the pitch of this tone. One of the four major blood groups in the ABO system. The symbol for the chemical Boron.
The Letter C
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘c’. The third in a series. Something shaped like the letter‘c’. The third best or third highest in quality or rank; a mark of C on a term paper. The first tone in the scale of C major or the third tone in the relative minor scale.
Symbol for the element carbon and the Roman numeral 100. A circled‘c’ represents copyright or ownership.
The Letter D
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘d’. The fourth in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘d’. The lowest passing grade given to a student in a school or college. A string, key, or pipe tuned to the pitch of this note. In Roman numerals, the number 500.
The Letter E
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘e’. The fifth in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘e’. In education, a grade that indicates a ‘fail’. A string, key, or pipe tuned to the pitch of this note. The hypothesized traditional source of those narrative portions of the Pentateuch in which God is referred to as Elohim, so therefore a word of great power. In weather forecasting and geography, E stands for east, one of the four cardinal directions.
The Letter F
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘f’. The sixth in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘f’. In education, a grade that indicates a ‘fail’. A string, key, or pipe tuned to the pitch of this note. In chemistry, F is the symbol of the element fluorine.
The Letter G
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘g’. The seventh in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘g’. A string, key, or pipe tuned to the pitch of this note. In physics, G stands for the gravitational constant, the force that brings you back to earth.
The Letter H
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘h’. The eighth in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘h’. In chemistry, H is the symbol for the element hydrogen.
The Letter I
Any name, word, place or sound represented by the letter‘i’. The ninth in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘i’. A symbol for the self, the person you are.
The Letter J
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘j’. Symbol of January, June and July or the Jack in a deck of cards. The tenth in a series. Something shaped like the letter‘j’. The hypothesized traditional source of those portions of the Pentateuch in which God is referred to with the Tetragrammaton rather than as Elohim, therefore a letter of power.
The Letter K
Any name, word, place or sound represented by the letter‘k’. The 11th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘k’. In chemistry, K is the symbol for the element potassium. In law, K is a symbol for contract and in baseball for a strikeout.
The Letter L
Any name, word, place or sound presented by the letter‘l’. The 12th in a series. Something shaped like a‘k’. In the movie Men In Black, agent‘L’ (as in ‘elle’, French for‘she’) is the lead female character.
The Letter M
Any name, word, place, or sound represented by the letter‘m’. The 13th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘m’. In information systems, M is often used as the abbreviation for the male sex in personal data records. In calendars, M is often an abbreviation for Monday, or for the months March or May. In French, and some English works by French authors, M. is an abbreviation for Monsieur.
The Letter N
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘n’. The 14th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘n’. In weather forecasting and geography, N stands for north, one of the four cardinal directions. In calendars, N is often an abbreviation for the month November. In chemistry, N is the symbol for nitrogen.
The Letter O
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘o’. The 15th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘o’. One of the four major blood groups in the ABO system. Zero or nothing. In chemistry, O is the symbol of the element oxygen, essential for life.
The Letter P
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘p’. Symbol for the smallest unit of the British currency, the penny. The 16th in a series. Something shaped like the letter‘p’. In chess, P is a symbol for the pawn. In chemistry, P is the symbol for phosphorus, something that spontaneously combusts at room temperature.
The Letter Q
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘q’. The 17th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘q’. A hypothetical lost manuscript, consisting largely of sayings of Jesus, that is believed to have been the source of passages in the gospels of Matthew and Luke. In chess, Q is a symbol for the queen. It is also the symbol for a question, as in
The Letter R
Any word, name, place, or sound represented by the letter‘r’. The 18th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘r’. In film, R is a rating given by film classification boards meaning‘restricted’. R is sometimes used as a symbol for river.
The Letter S
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘s’. Symbol of the snake. The 19th in a series. Something shaped like the letter‘s’. In chemistry, S is the symbol of the element sulfur. In weather forecasting and geography, S stands for south, one of the four cardinal directions.
The Letter T
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘t’. The 20th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘t’. In calendars, T is often an abbreviation for Tuesday or Thursday. In propositional logic, T is the symbol for true.
The Letter U
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘u’. The 21st in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘u’. A grade that indicates an unsatisfactory status. In communication, U is an abbreviation for the word‘you’ in SMS or instant messaging.
The Letter V
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘v’. The 22nd in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘v’. V is for Victory. In computing, V is an operation on a semaphore, used for process synchronization. In grammar, v is an abbreviation for verb or action.
The Letter W
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘w’. The 23rd in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘w’. In weather forecasting and geography, W stands for west, one of the four cardinal directions.
The Letter X
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘x’. The 24th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘x’. A mark inscribed to represent the signature of someone who is unable to sign their name. An unknown or unnamed factor, thing or person. To delete, cancel, or obliterate with a series of Xs. Often used with the word‘out’. In films, X used to be the rating given to films suitable for an adult-only audience. A symbol for Christ, as in Xmas. In genetics, X denotes the X chromosome and XX denotes female in the XY sex-determination system
The Letter Y
Any name, word, place or sound represented by the letter‘y’. The 25th in a series. Something shaped like the letter ‘y’. In genetics, Y denotes the Y or male chromosome and XY denotes male in the XY sex- determination system. In Internet slang,‘why’ is commonly denoted by Y due to the similarity in pronunciation.
The Letter Z
Any word, name, place or sound represented by the letter‘z’. The 26th or last place in a series. Something shaped like the letter‘z’. In cartoons, multiple Zs are slang for sleep. In mathematics, z denotes a complex variable.
... The Element Encyclopedia
Here is a list of some of the most wellknown sayings.
If images that are reminiscent of them appear in your dreams—for example, cows standing in a line or crickets chirping—as well as referring to the specific symbols involved, it is always worth looking for possible interpretations concerning your mood or state of mind using the weather-related entries in this chapter as your guide:
You can tell it will rain if: cats clean themselves more and meow more; pigs wallow about and squeal; cows huddle together as if seeking comfort from each other; horses ’switch and twitch’ and sometimes bolt; insects fly low and bite more; birds chirp more loudly; dandelions close their blossoms tightly; morning glory ’tucks in’ its blooms as if ready for a long nap; clover folds up its leaves; leaves on many trees roll up or show their undersides... The Element Encyclopedia
Dreams that involve rulers, compasses or other measuring instruments reflect a desire to put a situation or your emotions into perspective; if you keep a cool head, there is no reason why you should not achieve success.
If a radar screen appears in your dream, this may refer to your intuition or sense of other people’s feelings.... The Element Encyclopedia
According to ancient dream-lore, dreaming of fine weather foretells happy events and dreaming of bad weather indicates future misfortune. Although dreams in which weather features strongly may be presenting you with a forecast of sunny or stormy times ahead, modern dream analysts tend to follow the Jungian interpretation; this suggests that weather dreams often reflect the emotional climate in your waking life. Whether your dream featured sunshine, snow, rain or a gentle breeze, it is likely that the symbolism of the weather mirrored your current emotions or thought processes in waking life. Another interpretation focuses on the changeability and fickleness of weather, suggesting that your unconscious is forecasting your own change of mood in the real world.
The message of your dream is often highlighted if you felt extremes of temperature or if the weather was uncharacteristic in some way, such as snow falling in summer. Stormy skies may show arguments and anger, sunshine may show happiness and optimism, and snow may indicate that your emotions are frozen. Dreams of earthquakes, avalanches and other natural disasters suggest emotions that are so powerful and uncontrolled that they can have disastrous effects when unleashed on your waking world. See also DISASTERS; NATURE AND THE SEASONS.... The Element Encyclopedia
The stimuli that you are not consciously aware of are nevertheless noted by the brain, but on a subconscious level (the drip of the bathroom water faucet, the remark by a coworker at the water cooler while you were on the telephone.)
Furthermore, you feel emotions all day. Some you acknowledge and act on (you say thank you and smile when you are complimented.) Some you repress or do not allow yourself to act on (you don’t punch your boss in the nose when he tells you the report you worked on for a week is no longer needed.)
Traumatic experiences occur that you face (you call the police) or if it too painful, you deny them happening and send them deep into your subconscious (repression.)
In addition to all these emotions and stimuli the brain must process daily, it also keeps your body functioning; it remembers names and faces; it allows you to talk and walk and chew gum (sometimes all at the same time); and performs numerous other activities that you take for granted.
You must admit -- that’s a lot to do. At night, when your body must rest, the mind continues working. When no longer called upon to type letters and do the grocery shopping, the brain concentrates on processing all of those subconscious stimuli and emotions (while still maintaining body temperature and breathing, etc.)
This is why we dream. Only you are not awake to receive the signals at a conscious level -- you can not hear or see or touch (at a conscious level) while you are sleeping. The brain must resort to other means to get the signals through to your conscious mind. This is why we dream the way we do.
The mind uses everything at its disposal (which is everything it has ever been exposed to) to get the message across. Simply put, dreaming is the minds way of processing all of the stimuli and emotions it has received during the day or repressed over time, so that you may act on them.
All in all, it’s a pretty neat system. But unless you are remembering and making sense of your dreams, you are missing out on countless opportunities to learn about yourself and experience life to its fullest.
Even though we’ve addressed it before, it bears repeating. Why should you try and remember your dreams?... Dreampedia
Perhaps the best way to understand sleep and dreams is to understand the brain. At the very start of the twentieth century it was found that the brain gave off electrical impulses, and by the 1920s scientists could measure brain waves. To obtain these readings, electrodes were attached to various parts of the head, the impulses being transformed onto electroencephalograms (EECs) on computer screens.
It seems that once you settle down to bed, your brain and body undergo radical changes from their waking state. The difference between being asleep and being awake is loss of conscious awareness, and once you start to doze, dream researchers believe you progress through four stages of sleep. These form the basis of a cycle that repeats up to four or five times every eight hours of sleep.
During the first stage, your body and mind become relaxed. Heart and breathing rate slow down, blood pressure lowers, body temperature drops slightly and eyes roll from side to side. You are neither fully conscious, nor fully unconscious, and could easily awake if disturbed. This stage of gradually falling asleep is also called the hypnagogic state (the hypnopompic state is a similar state when you are just waking up) and you may experience hallucinations that float before your eyes.
In stage two, breathing and heart rate become even slower, eyes continue to roll and you become more and more unaware of the noises of the outside world. It isn’t until the third stage of sleep, however, that you are sleeping soundly and it would be difficult to wake you. Finally, you enter a deep sleep state known as non-rapid eye movement (NREM) when your brain is released from the demands of the conscious mind. It will now be quite hard to wake you and, although you may sleepwalk or have night terrors, you will rarely be able to remember them. This slow-wave sleep cycle lasts about ninety minutes. At the end of stage four, you move back through stages three and two and one, at which point you enter a phase called rapid eye movement, or REM, sleep.... Dreampedia
As I mentioned, you spend about a third of your life sleeping. If you have a life span of seventy-five years, you’ll be asleep for twenty-five of those years. Imagine! Yet, despite the prevalence and common experience of sleep, only recently did science begin to understand what it is all about.
Although dreaming and its causes are still a matter for speculation, brain wave studies provide important information about sleep itself. In a normal night, a person passes through four different stages of sleep, identifiable by brain wave patterns, eye movements, and muscle tension.
In the first stage, the pattern of the brain waves goes from what is known as beta, or normal waking consciousness, to alpha, the first step into sleep. The beta phase is 13 to 26 cps (cycles per second, the speed of the oscillations in the brain wave cycle), during which you are awake and fully functioning, studying, working, socializing. The alpha phase is 8 to 13 cps, a state of deep relaxation during which you are still aware of your surroundings, whether with eyes open or closed. It is the precursor to sleep and the stage reached during light meditation. Alpha is the sort of somnolent state we might go into on a long train ride when we have been staring out the window at a monotonous landscape for hours and are lulled by boredom and inactivity.
During the alpha stage, heart and pulse rates slow down, blood pressure drops slightly, and so does temperature. Your muscles are in a relaxed condition and you experience mental “drifting.” Images described as hypnogogic may float through your mind, seemingly unrelated to anything or else variations of what you were thinking or doing just before going to bed. These hypnogogic images can be vivid, as if drug-induced. Sometimes these images are quite meaningful and may startle you back to the beta state. When this happens, you may experience your muscles jumping back to the ready-to-go stage, a common happening that is called the myoclonic jerk.
Stage three is called theta and is represented by 4 to 8 cps, the same rate you display during periods of intense daydreaming (when you can actually forget where you are) or deep meditation. This stage of abstractedness is sometimes called a brown study. In the theta state, you are neither fully awake nor fully asleep. Yet you are in a light slumber, and, if not disturbed, you will fall asleep. The brain wave pattern of theta is characterized by rapid bursts of brain activity. Sleep researchers believe that theta is truly a sleep state, but when disrupted out of this state many subjects report that they were not asleep but merely “thinking.”
Researchers believe that it is during the theta stage that most dreams occur.
Dreams are recognizable to an observer by what is called rapid eye movement, or REM. The eyeballs move back and forth like someone watching a tennis match under their closed lids. Researchers originally discovered REM by watching cats sleep, and if you observe either a cat or a person sleeping, you will notice their eyes moving back and forth. A cat or dog may twitch as if running, but during REM a human’s muscles are virtually paralyzed. The period of REM ordinarily lasts for several minutes at a time, switching on and off. If you awaken during a REM period, you will most likely remember your dreams easily and in great detail.
“Dreaming liberates perception, enlarging the scope of what can be perceived.”
The Art of Dreaming
The last stage is delta; at 0 to 4 cps, it is the slowest and is evident during the deepest part of the sleep cycle. This is the state when you are totally out and even a ringing telephone or alarm clock may not wake you. Teens often experience this deepest level of sleep in the early morning hours, which is why they are often hard to wake up for school. Teens actually do better when allowed to sleep late: you function better, learn better, and generally feel better when you are able to “sleep yourself out.” It’s unfortunate that teens are often mandated an early rising time for school or even before-school activities, such as sports practice. It’s not only how much you sleep, apparently, but also when you get your sleep that counts.
People awakened from the delta stage of sleep will feel disoriented and only half awake, and they will want nothing more than to go back to sleep. If, for example, a need to visit the bathroom wakes you from a delta sleep, you may bump into the furniture or the walls, even though you know your way around. During delta, there are no eye movements. It is also the time that sleepwalking occurs. As most everyone knows, a sleepwalker can move around unerringly, as if awake, and should be left alone unless he or she is in danger. If not awakened, sleepwalkers almost always make their way back to bed without a problem, and when they do wake up they have no memory of their nighttime excursions.
An average complete sleep cycle lasts about three hours. For the first hour and a half of the cycle the sleeper moves from a waking state to light sleep to REM sleep to deep dreamless sleep. The cycle reverses itself in the second half, returning upward (so to speak) from the deep sleep of delta to the lighter theta- alpha stages. As brain activity rises, so do blood pressure, pulse, and temperature. In warm weather, you may be awakened by feeling hot as your body temperature returns to normal. This is always a clue that you are in the process of waking up, and it’s a good sign to be aware of so that you will focus on your dreams and be ready to take notes on them.
Every night you go through three or four complete sleep cycles of ninety minutes each. The first REM period of the night lasts five to ten minutes. During each cycle, the REM is repeated, lasting longer as the night progresses, while the time between the cycles gets shorter. Your last REM can be as long as an hour, and this is prime dreamtime with excellent chances for good recall of your dreams. What this means in practical terms is that, if you sleep for seven hours straight, half of your dreamtime will occur during the two hours before you wake up in the morning. An additional hour of sleep will give you an additional hour of dreaming! This is a powerful argument for getting to bed early enough to get eight hours of continuous sleep. Of course, these figures are based on laboratory averages and may not hold true for every person—you are an individual and will sleep and dream in your own way. I have found that I dream twice as much as the average reported by sleep studies, sometimes with less sleep than the average, sometimes with more.
None of these states of consciousness—beta, alpha, theta, delta—are foreign to us. We cycle through all four of them during the course of twenty-four hours, slipping in and out of them, mostly without noticing. For example, during normal beta wakefulness, you may drift off into a daydream or reverie, thinking about tonight’s date or tomorrow’s picnic, and enter the alpha phase for a while. The phone rings, or a friend speaks to you, and you snap back into the beta state.
Or you could be driving your car along a monotonous route with little to pay attention to and slip for a few moments into the theta phase (lots of people fall asleep at the wheel for a few seconds and then quickly recover) only to flip back into beta as you see a sharp curve up ahead or hear another car honking. Everyone has had the experience of “dropping off” for a couple of seconds during ordinary everyday activities (or, perhaps, lack of activity).
For those who want to pursue dream studies, it’s important to pay attention to these alpha-theta states. There is a twilight zone where you are neither asleep nor awake but are alert to slight disturbances. It’s here you may catch a dream as it is forming, and it is in this state that you are best able to give yourself instructions for remembering your dreams-to-come and for “programming” dreams to fulfill specific purposes.
Use the following exercise to track your own personal sleep patterns. Following the format given here, keep a record of your sleep habits for two weeks in order to prepare for the exercises throughout this book. You’ll find out a lot about your sleep needs, when you dream, and your level of recall. Over time, even from day to day, you may find differences that are worth noting. Then, if you want to continue the process, record your sleep habits in a separate notebook.... Dreampedia
What happens when we sleep?
Why do we sleep? The answer is not as simple as it seems. We sleep so that our body can rest, we think at first. However, science has not been able to prove concretely that sleep is necessary for physical recuperation of the body. Experiments performed on rats have proven that when deprived of sleep, these animals die.
But human nature is not as simple as that of rats. Everyone knows people who barely sleep. The most extreme case, published in some scientific magazines, is that of a man who claims not to have slept since contracting a serious illness. In a similar vein, some individuals with a highly developed spirituality are able to remain conscious all night. We’re not referring to a student during exam time drinking coffee or taking stimulants to stay awake more than twenty-four hours straight. We’re talking about people who can achieve advanced levels of relaxation through deep meditation.
It is known that anxiety and lack of concentration increase considerably after a night or two without sleep. One theory related to sleep affirms that we sleep to conserve energy. However, another suggests that we rest to conserve our food stores, since when we lose consciousness, we repress the hunger mechanism.
How much do we sleep?
Sleep at different ages
In the course of his life, a person has, on average, 300,000 dreams. As we age, both the time we spend sleeping and the time we spend dreaming decrease gradually.
Newborns sleep almost all day, alternating hours of sleep with short spells of wakefulness. By one year of age, they sleep fewer sessions but for longer in total: they have cycles of 90 minutes of sleep followed by another 90 minutes of waking time. Gradually, the child will sleep more at night and less during the day. By 9 years of age, most need between 9 and 12 hours of sleep a day.
The average for an adult is between 7 and 8.5 hours. But after age 70, we return to the sleep phases of childhood and sleep fewer hours continuously.
There are arguments that even claim we have slept since ancient times in order to appear a less tasty snack for nocturnal predators (when we sleep, our body looks like a corpse).
There are theories to suit everyone, but we shouldn’t forget the fundamental: for almost all of us, sleeping is a relaxing and pleasant experience that lasts between six and eight hours each night, an experience that is utterly necessary to “recharge the batteries” of our bodies.
It’s no coincidence that we choose nighttime to sleep. In the darkness our vision is reduced, the world becomes strange, and as a result, our imagination runs wild. Our minds remain occupied with images (that is, dreams). At night, our eyes don’t work, but we have a need to create images. If for some reason we are deprived of sleep, the following nights our dream production increases, since we spend more time in the REM phase (the period of sleep when oneiric thoughts are most active). Therefore it seems evident that we need dreams to live.
Some ancient civilizations believed that dreaming served, more than anything, to be able to dream. They were convinced that oneiric activity wasn’t the result of sleeping, but rather the reason for it. Some scientists, however, don’t share the theories of our ancestors when it comes to the reason behind our dreams.
There is a scientific school of thought that asserts that oneiric thoughts are simply a neurophysiological activity that comes with sleep. According to this theory, when we sleep we generate spontaneous signals that stimulate the sensory channels in the mind. The brain transforms these signals into visual images and induces the dreamer to believe that he is living real experiences.
Up to that point, perfect. But, why do dreams have such an interesting narrative? Why do they so often express metaphoric language? Why do they narrate stories that directly affect us? There is no concrete or scientific answer to these questions.
Percentages of REM sleep
Cold-blooded animals never dream; the cold temperatures at night cause them to hibernate and all their vital functions, including the brain, slow down. Only when the sun comes out or the temperature rises to an acceptable level do they recuperate all vital functions. The only cold-blooded animal that has shown signs of dreaming is the chameleon.
On the other hand, we know all warm-blooded animals dream, since REM-phase activity has been detected in all of them. Birds dream only about 0.5% of the time they spend asleep, while humans dream up to 20% of the time. There are exceptional cases, such as that of the Australian platypus, that never dream.
Other theories suggest that dreams serve to eliminate unnecessary facts from memory, since we can’t store everything that happens every day. According to this thesis, at night we erase the “archives” we don’t need, just like a computer. The sleeping mind tests the process of erasing in the form of dreams, which would explain why they’re so difficult to remember. There are obvious limitations to this theory if you keep in mind that, occasionally, oneiric thoughts work creatively (they go beyond the information that we give them). These don’t have much to do with the merely “hygienic” function that the aforementioned scientific community claims. Often, dreams don’t eliminate the useless leftovers of daily experiences. Quite the opposite: they give them a surprising new shape, so when we wake up, we can reflect more deeply on their meaning.
The phases of sleep
Even though we don’t realize it, when we sleep at night we pass through four different phases of sleep. Each phase is distinguished by the deepness of sleep. That is, when we are in phase 1, it is a fairly light sleep; during phase 4, we reach maximum intensity.
When we go to sleep, we enter a period in which we gradually pull away from the exterior world. Little by little, our sleep deepens until finally (phase 4) our breathing slows and becomes regular, our cardiac rhythm slows down, and our body temperature decreases. Therefore the body’s metabolism also reduces its activity.
More or less an hour after falling asleep, your body has already gone through the four phases. At this point you begin to go back through the levels until you return to phase 1. This brings along an increase in respiratory and cardiac rhythm. Parallel to this, brain waves once again start to register an activity close to that of consciousness. You are therefore in a moment of transition, demonstrated by the fact that at this point the body tends to change position.
All signs indicate that any noise might wake us. But that’s not the case: since your muscle tone has been reduced, this is actually the moment when it’s most difficult to regain consciousness. At the same time, your eyes begin to move behind your eyelids (up and down and side to side). This ocular phenomenon, which anyone can observe easily, is known as the REM phases, which stands for “rapid eye movement.”
Certain areas of the brain are associated with different functions and human skills, translating external sensory stimuli into a well-organized picture of the world. In dreams, those same stimuli produce different reactions. If a sleeping person hears a sound or touches something repulsive, those stimuli will probably be integrated into their dream before they wake up.
The REM phase
The REM phase is particularly important for those interested in dreams. All studies indicate that during this brief spell (from five to ten minutes) we typically experience the most intense oneiric activity. Some of these studies, done in a sleep laboratory, have observed that eight out of ten individuals relate very vivid dreams when woken up right at the end of the REM phase. These periods alternate at night with what we could call non-REM phases, that is, periods when no ocular movement is registered.
How many times do we reach a REM stage at night? It is estimated that each cycle is repeated four to seven times. As the hours pass, each phase gets longer. This way, the final REM stage might last twenty to forty minutes. On average, an adult enjoys an hour and a half of REM sleep each night, although for older individuals it may be less than an hour and a quarter. Babies, on the other hand, remain in the REM phase for 60 percent of the time they spend asleep.
In any case, let’s make this clear: not all dreams are produced during this period. It has also been demonstrated that humans generate images in other stages. However, these are dreams of a different quality, since during the non-REM phases, our oneiric activity tends to generate only undefined thoughts, vague sensations, etc. Nothing close to the emotional content that characterizes dreams produced in the REM phase.
The oneiric images produced in the most intense phase (REM) are more difficult to remember. One method to remember them consists of waking up just after each REM phase.
As we’ve commented already, those who wish to read their dreams have to first do the work of remembering them. If we want this work to be 100 percent effective, we can use a method that, although uncomfortable, almost never fails: wake up just after every REM phase. If you want to try this method, set your alarm (without music or radio) to go off four, five, six, or seven and a half hours after falling asleep. You can be sure that if you wake up just after one of the REM phases you go through each night, you will enjoy vivid memories.
This is the process used in sleep laboratories, where oneiric activity is studied through encephalographic registry of electrical brain activity.
The people in the study—who are volunteers—sleep connected to machines that register their physiological reactions (brain waves, cardiac rhythm, blood pressure, muscle activity, eye movement, etc).
At certain points during the night, these reactions indicate that, if you wake them, they will be able to tell you what they dreamed. This is because the phase that produces the most intense dreams (REM) is characterized by a physical reaction easily observed: the rapid movement of the eyes of the dreamer.
With this method, sleep laboratories can collect proof of precisely
when subjects are dreaming. And given that oneiric images are difficult to remember, the lab techniques have been a great advance in dream research. Some experts assert that thanks to the scientific advances of the second half of the twentieth century, we have learned more about sleep processes in the last fifty years than in all the history of humanity.
What do we dream?
A wide study done in France on the subject of dreams produced these results:
Hypnagogic images: between waking and sleep
As we’ve seen, throughout the night our sleep is divided into four distinct phases. But what happens just before we sink into the first phase? Are we still awake? Not exactly. In the moments when our mind decides between wakefulness and sleep, we begin to lose contact with the world around us, without the characteristic physiological changes of sleep.
This intermediate point has been called the “hypnagogic state” by psychologists. This is a period when, despite the fact that we’re not asleep, our brains generate images that can sometimes be very beautiful. In some ways, these images rival those found in our dreams.
Hypnagogic images of great visual beauty evaporate like bubbles when we wake up and are barely remembered.
However, the hypnagogic state cannot be considered a truly oneiric state. Among other reasons, the scenes produced in this phase are unrelated to the episodes with a more or less coherent plot that characterize dreams.
In the hypnagogic state we produce unrelated images that hardly connect to each other and that, unlike dreams, are not linked to our daily experiences. This phenomenon occurs not only before sleeping but also in the moments before waking up, when we are not yet conscious enough to be aware of them.
Sometimes, before falling asleep we also experience a curious sensation of floating or flying, or we may see very sharp scenes, with a clarity comparable to that of real visual experiences. These types of images, like dreams, evaporate like bubbles when we wake up and we barely remember them, which is a shame because their beauty slips from our minds. In any case, unlike oneiric thoughts, the hypnagogic state is little use for understanding the messages our subconscious wants to send us, and we should value it more for its beauty than its transcendental content.
Salvador Dali, painter of dreams.
To remember them you must not lose consciousness during the apparition. That is, you must observe the process of the hypnagogic state without falling asleep. It seems simple but it is not, because you must submerge yourself in sleep while the mind remains aware of the events happening in its interior. With a little luck, we can see some of the marvelous “paintings” of our private museum.
The surrealist artists of the 20s and 30s knew all about this. This is how Salvador Dali, fervent lover of hypnagogic scenes, turned to what is known as “the monk’s sleep.” He went to bed with a large iron key in his hand. With the first dream, the key would fall to the floor and he would wake up suddenly. In his mind he recorded the hypnagogic images he would later transfer to the canvas in his masterful style.
The seven “chakras,” or centers of subtle energy in the ayurvedic hindu medicine (1).
The nadis according to Tibetan tradition (2).
The meridians of traditional Chinese medicine (3).
If you have difficulty retaining the hypnagogic state, try centering your attention on a concrete point. For example the “third eye” of the yogis (that is, between your eyes), in the area of the heart, or in the top of the head. These three positions are, according to the philosophy of yoga, the centers of subtle rather than physical energy in the human body. You need a place to direct the mind. Another trick to hold attention without effort is to think abstractly about the name of the object you wish to see. This doesn’t mean you have to “create” the images; you just have to induce its appearance during the hypnagogic state. Entering through meditation is also very useful and beneficial.
Sometimes, the hypnagogic scenes are not as pleasant as we would like, but we must confront them in order to strengthen our ability for self-control. If they persist, try following the previous advice. Think abstractly about the name of what you want to see, resisting the temptation to construct it in a certain way from the conscious mind.
The main advantage of the hypnagogic state is that it brings us progressively closer to our deep Self . . . and all that helps to understand and better benefit from dreams.
The same subject can have very different meanings depending on the circumstances and personal situation of the dreamer.... Dreampedia
Clear and personalized messages Before jumping in to discover the hidden messages that filter into our dreams and appear in the dictionary in the second part, it’s best to keep in mind that not all oneiric thoughts can be analyzed with the same pattern. Therefore, psychologists and analysts distinguish between three classes of dreams:
In these dreams, death can mean many different things; for example, some psychologists interpret it as marking the end of a life cycle. This is why we insist on the importance of personalizing the dream interpretation.
Be that as it may, premonitions tend to be hidden in a symbolism that is difficult to decode, since it does not refer to past experiences. They are messages that try to warn us of dangers that face us on the physical or emotional plane. For this reason, eastern cultures have always valued them highly, as we will see later on. Satisfaction dreams Satisfaction dreams constitute the basis for the main theories of oneiric interpretation. They deal with those images in which we fulfill the desires that we cannot satisfy while awake. Therefore, this huge category includes everything from erotic dreams to the worst nightmares. In some cases, a certain satisfaction dream may repeat for years. This means that the person’s subconscious is warning them of the importance of something they may be trying to ignore. The part of this book dedicated to interpretation refers to this type of dreams.
Sexual dreams are not necessarily the result of accumulated sexual tension that needs to be released, but rather they usually refer to inner conflicts and hidden needs, or a desire to enjoy sex more freely.Sexual dreams There are dreams that have the capacity to excite us, intrigue us, make us tremble, embarrass us . . . These are the ones that we never, or almost never, share with others. These are erotic dreams that, generally speaking, have nothing to do with the social or sexual conduct of our waking lives.
“Dreams manifest the desires that our consciousness does not express.” Sigmund FreudErotic dreams join other sensations that, in waking life, we probably wouldn’t relate immediately with sex. Therefore, these dreams, which could be violent, passionate, perverse, romantic, etc., tend to refer to inner conflicts and hidden emotional needs. Therefore they belong to the classification of satisfaction dreams.
On some occasions, they reveal a fear of intimacy or warn against certain relationships. In others, they illustrate situations and behaviors that we cannot normally exhibit. The dream represents everything through symbols or a strong sexual connotation. Its themes and languages, often dark, can confuse us or make us doubt because each individual has their personal symbols (just like with other types of dreams). It’s interpretation, therefore, should be performed according to the situation of the individual.
Dreams are escape routes for sexual impulses that social conventions repress; in erotic dreams everything seems permissible, so they are the best way to bring our most secret emotional desires to light. For Sigmund Freud, dreams manifested the desires that our consciousness does not express, and that was all.
Dreams contain valuable information about ourselves. But their meaning is often far from what it seems.
On occasion, erotic dreams illustrate situations and behaviors that we can’t experience in real life, whether it is due to social convention or our own beliefs. These sexual dreams act as an escape route for repressed impulses.Therefore, it’s important to pay attention to them because they contain valuable information about ourselves. However, their meaning is often far from what it seems. They may just as well symbolize tension in our daily lives as the desire to have a good time. Erotic dreams and fantasies Erotic dreams are also related to a person’s physical and emotional development. During puberty, for example, these kinds of dreams are very common. Others that are more unpleasant are related to episodes of abuse or sexual assault. In some form or another, almost everyone has had some type of erotic dreams because at the end of the day, they are natural occurrences that are part of our lives.
They deserve our time and attention. For example, it’s important to discover when they refer to sexual issues and when they refer to other aspects, because erotic dreams often bring us valuable clues about intimacy with a partner. If something is not right in the relationship, they probably indicate the path to resolution. There should not be any difference between the erotic dreams of men and women, just between different people. However, various studies done in the United States have demonstrated the opposite. While women usually have erotic dreams with someone they know and go all the way from flirting to coitus, men dream of anonymous kinky women that succumb to their fantasies. Obviously this is not always the case, but it is undeniable that a personal relationship is highly valued in the feminine psyche. The masculine, on the other hand, opts for pleasure and domination.
The education one has received, the latent sexism of the collective subconscious, and that of the media are all factors that dreams cannot bypass. These dreams can provoke even decisive, strong women to feel more vulnerable during dreams. Fortunately, as our customs are changing, the dissimilarities between masculine and feminine erotic dreams are gradually shrinking.
Finally, erotic dreams, like all dreams, can hide fears, anxieties, and needs that you repress due to inhibitive situations or a lack of time to face the problem. With the interpretation of erotic dreams, we can find many clues to understand our emotions better.
While men dream of anonymous kinky women succumbing to their fantasies, women usually dream of erotic encounters with men they know.Dreams of duality: masculine-feminine
In this way, when a man dreams that he is a woman, the message is not necessarily about a conflict of identity or sexuality; more likely it refers to a lack of attention to the more sensitive, intuitive side of his personality. Equally, when a woman sees herself as a man in her dreams, her subconscious may be appealing to her more energetic and rational side.
Dreams in which the left (feminine) or right (masculine) side of our bodies are hurt or immobilized (for example, an arm or leg) warn us that we are repressing or denying our masculine or feminine development. It is difficult for us to accept our duality and we reject this aspect that we don’t know how to express.
Dreams of houses
The great oneirologist of ancient times, Artemidorus of Ephesus (second century BC) said: “The home is us”; and the most recent research on oneiric content confirms it. Buildings in our dreams are a reflection of our personality. Therefore you must pay attention to all the details that appear, which give you reliable hints about your desires, fears, worries . . . Each place and element of the house refers to a personal aspect of the self; the kitchen represents our spiritual or intellectual appetite; the oven is the alchemic place of transformation; the basement represents the accumulation of riches; the bedroom, conjugal difficulties, etc.
However, dreams in which different rooms appear can also refer to different areas of real life. If, for example, you find yourself cooking in a kitchen, it may be a reference to a plan that you are “cooking up” in real life. If you find yourself locked in a dark basement, perhaps you feel guilty about something and think you deserve a punishment. Lying in a bed or on a sofa can be a sign that you need a break from your exhausting daily routine.
When the doors of the dream house are shut tight or covered with brick, or there are signs on doors to the rooms prohibiting entry, you should ask yourself what is blocking your evolution in real life. It may be part of your own personality or some basic inhibition.
The buildings in our dreams are a reflection of our personality. “The Splash” (David Hockney, 1966).Many people dream that they discover new rooms in houses that they know well. In general, this points to unknown aspects of their personality that are about to come out; but it can also indicate that they are ready for a new intellectual challenge.
The feelings that emerge when we find ourselves inside an oneiric building are very significant. If you feel brave and curious while exploring every nook and cranny of the house, it means that you are not afraid of what you may discover about yourself, you act assuredly, and face your problems with confidence. On the other hand, if you feel afraid it is a sign of inhibition and insecurity.
A pleasant, organized room reflects mental order and spiritual serenity. If it doesn’t have windows, it is a sign of isolation, fear, and insecurity. “La habitacion” (“The Room”) (Van Gogh, 1889).Nightmares and anxious dreams Nightmares are terrifying dreams that usually stay in our minds when we wake up. They usually occur during the REM phase and, on occasion, are so distressing that they wake you up and torment you for a few minutes. The fear is often accompanied by cold sweats, dry mouth, heart palpitations . . . and the sensation of having lived a terrible moment.
Sometimes, traumatic events that happen to us in waking life (an accident, a robbery, a sexual assault) revisit us in dreams. Our mind needs to free the tension caused by the event and it does it while our consciousness rests.
Worry dreams reflect subconscious doubts and fears about events in our lives that have been saved in our minds but not our conscious memory.These dreams typically disappear with time. If they persist, it may be a major trauma that requires professional help or, at least, and understanding friend to listen; talking about it is the first step to overcoming it.
Many cultures share the belief that nightmares are nothing more than malignant spirits that attack their victims in their sleep with terrifying thoughts. Some research on oneiric content concludes that these scary dreams are more common in childhood, and if they persist into adulthood it usually indicates a deeply rooted problem.
Research in sleep laboratories has demonstrated that often nightmares are triggered by a sudden noise, which detonates a distressing oneiric image. Therefore, for people who suffer from frequent nightmares, it is advisable to wear earplugs.
Dreams in which we feel worried about something are more frequent than nightmares, and sometimes the pressure we feel to resolve a problem in the dream wakes us up. Once awake, the oneiric worry may seem trivial compared to our real problems, however we should not ignore the importance of these dreams; their analysis will reveal areas of our lives that require attention or make us insecure.
Worry dreams reflect subconscious doubts and fears about events in our lives that have been saved in our minds but not our conscious memory. They deal with minor preoccupations that we haven’t consciously given attention to, but our subconscious has recognized.
According to Freud, dreams that generate anxiety or worry are the result of trying to repress an emotion or desire, usually sexual. Freud also highlighted the importance of finding the source of that worry in waking life, since these worries left unattended can degenerate into worse traumas.
To analyze this type of dream you must pay attention to all the elements that appear in the episode, since it is symbolically giving you hints about what worries us.
Dreams about angels are usually messages of inner exploration. In some oneiric episodes they appear as spiritual guides and protectors that try to show us a path.Dreams of inner exploration: forgotten babies and angels
Dreams about angels or spiritual entities tend to be messages of inner exploration. We see various examples collected in an “office of dreams.”
“I am in utter darkness. I am surrounded by silence and emptiness. Suddenly, a shape appears, white and slender, pure, almost surreal. The features of the face are erased. A pure oval, the svelte body, without a definable sex. There is only the impression of extreme sweetness and deep harmony; but this character causes me such an impression of abandonment that it seems like a cry for help. I wrap it in my arms and want to save it at all costs.”
This is a dream of protections, of contact with the invisible world. In this oneiric episode, the androgynous character is recognized as angelic. This fabulous vision is none other than the person’s angel showing him his ailment, found in the darkness.
In other dreams, angels appear as spiritual guides or personal guardians:
The cartoons of “Little Nemo” (Winsor McCay, 1905) always ended with the images of Nemo falling out of bed. His incredible stories revolved around his fascinating dreams.
“I had died on a golden carriage decorated with blue velvet; to my right, a feminine angel, all white, smiled at me . . . she held before me the reins of two white horses, while ahead of us, an unending path bathed in sunlight opened to us.”
One of the most pleasant and stimulating oneiric experiences is traveling to a far-off place and waking up with the sensation of having returned from a great vacation. Without a doubt, this often means a deep desire to travel that you have not been able to satisfy; but it can also hold other interesting readings.
On occasion, you remember precise details about places and settings you have never been to. This could be due to photographs, movies, or television reports that you’ve seen and that your subconscious has saved for some special reason.
These journeys coincide, sometimes, with moment in real life when we are about to begin something new (a change of job or location . . .). Just as the landscape and feelings of the dream can indicate our real emotions about this change, the circumstances of the trip are also revealing. If it is a bumpy trip in which it is difficult to get to your destination (because you lost the tickets or bags, or crashed the car . . .), the dream may be encouraging you to weigh the pros and cons of the situation, and warning you about obstacles ahead. Perhaps you are not mentally prepared for the change.
On the other hand, dreams about remote and exotic places are warning you that your lifestyle is claustrophobic and repressed, and that you need a change or to broaden your horizons.
The mode of transportation that you use to travel in the dream is very significant. If you travel in plane, for example, you should ask yourself if you have your feet firmly on the ground or, on the contrary, if you feel more comfortable “in the clouds.” Escapism in real life tends to appear symbolically in travel dreams. Trains are symbols of new and exciting opportunities; missing the train or letting it leave is a clear symbol of a fear of change—and the insecurity that goes along with this. The station, or point of departure, is a symbolic place of transformation. The predicament of not having a ticket or money to buy one is related to some type of deficiency. However, if you manage to arrive at the destination despite it all, the dream is reflecting a certain amount of self satisfaction.
Surrealism was a revolution. The world of the oneiric, the subconscious, the paranoid . . . become a new way of seeing and exploring life. Its influence is still seen today.... Dreampedia