Dream Interpretation (2/2): How to Interpret Your Dreams

Nov 28, 2013
Your dreams are ripe for the picking.

Your dreams are ripe for the picking.

 

This is part 2 of 2 part series:

Dream Interpretation (1/2): A Wealth of Knowledge

 

In our last article, we discussed how dreams can help us develop our conscious mind.

In this article, we’re putting on our work gloves.

 

Learn the Language

“What do you mean learn the language? I’m already quite proficient in my native tongue.”

Yes, of course you are, but your unconscious mind is trying to communicate to you in your language. It’s using a more powerful one, one without as many limitations.

In the English language, we have 26 letters that we use in attempt to describe the entire range of human experience. Seems kind of silly to think this is possible, right?

Well it is. We need something more grand to represent what we are feeling, thinking, and doing.

Our unconscious mind knows this. So what does it do? It communicates to us in symbols.

Ever heard that saying “a picture’s worth a thousand words”?

 

Keep a Dream Journal

Once you learn the language of your dreams, you can make some sense out the whole mess.

These bizarre and seemingly unrelated events start to speak to you. A ladder becomes the promotion you wanted. A swimming pool becomes acceptance of your friends.

The best way to help organize this information is by keeping a dream journal.

A dream journal is no more than a notebook powered by your conscious mind and a pen.

There are three phases to working a dream journal: writing, decoding, and interpreting.

In the writing phase, you write down everything you can remember from your dream.

In the decoding phase, you look at the context and nouns of what you wrote in the writing phase. Then you make some quick associations to see what these nouns symbolize to you.

In the interpreting phase, you look at the symbolism of the nouns and decide where this is occurring in your awake life. You may begin with an objective observation and move to a subjective one.

Here’s an abbreviated version of what a dream interpretation entry could look like:

  • Phase 1: I walked into a store and the cashier asked me to check my personal belongings at the door. He took them and put them behind a glass case.
  • Phase 2: Noun= glass case. Symbolism= storage, no privacy.
  • Phase 3: I’ve noticed that my private affairs are not very private. I share a house with my family and everyone always is poking their nose in my business. In the dream, I was annoyed to check my belongings. In my awake life, I’m annoyed that my private life is public. I want to be more accepting of my situation, or I want to take back some of my privacy.

 

So if this was you, maybe you weren’t aware that your household affairs were giving you stress. If you were already aware, maybe the events in the dream surrounding this event could give you insight on how to address the issue.

Phase 3 (the decoding phase) can get really interesting. It can reveal hidden thoughts and emotions. It can also deliver you creative solutions.

Have you heard this one?

Elias Howe invented the lock-stitch sewing machine. He was struggling with the design until the answer came to him in a dream.

He was being stabbed by cannibals. While he was being stabbed, he noticed that the spears had a hole in the tip. He used this idea in his design and put a hole in the tip of the feeding needle. A masterpiece.

 

Incorporating Interpretations into Your Awake Life

Howe did it. He cashed in on an idea that was presented to him in his dream.

So maybe you’re not an inventor, but incorporating your interpretations into your awake life can bring great value to your awake hours.

Like mentioned before, it can help you address issues in your relationships, give you insight into challenges you are facing, and help you learn about stresses that you aren’t aware of.

Whatever the message presented to you is, it’s going to take courage to bring it into form.

So be courageous and plan your attack.

 

Leave a comment below with any specific questions about dream interpretation.

 

 

Comments

  1. As a gestalt practitioner and author of several books on the subject of dream interpretation via gestalt techniques, I concur. Your article is acurate as based on the principle of ‘projections.’ We humans project our biases, opinions, and emotions onto our environment, thus, every object is an opportunity to understand the self better. As an example, choose 2 items in your environment and describe each, individually, as if YOU are the ITEM. For instance, now I am a lamp, and I am bright, etc. Listen carefully to the words and identify which descriptive words accurately describe you. There is a WEALTH of information in our dreams. Did you know that Einstein’s theory of Relativity came to him via a dream? Cool ehh…you and Einstein in the same sentence….
    😉

    • LogitheYogi says:

      Very, very cool. Thank you so much for the example. I looked at the piano and said out loud, “I am musical. I am accurate. I need tuning sometimes. I’m not entirely sure how I got here, lol.” Tell us more about the books you’ve written. Will you provide us with some links?

      P.S. Yes, I love that Einstein’s dream story! Isn’t that wonderful! Makes me want to go to sleep and dream up some genius idea right now!

      • Oh I LOVE that you chose the piano! (Actually, I love ((and covet)) that you HAVE a piano!) And I am guessing that in fact you are, “musical, accurate,” and on occasion, in “need of tuning somtimes.” But all good pilots know that they must make continuous corrections (tuning) all the way to the end destination. It’s all good!

        Thanks for asking for links. That’s very kind of you. Here are two of my favorites:
        (Amazon) Escaping the Chrysalis: http://www.amazon.com/dp/0988533421

        (Amazon) The Flying Game
        http://www.amazon.com/dp/0988533472

        Keep dreamin’ and jotting down your projections! It’s your inner genius speaking!
        ~Jan (www.JanDeelstra.com)

        • LogitheYogi says:

          You guessed correctly! *begins lovely piano melody*. Wow, Jan I’m so impressed. Gestalt techniques and a work of fiction! You’re the coolest. I’m so intrigued by the synopsis of “The Flying Game.” I LOVE the motif in all of the Oz stories. I’m also a huge fan of “Wicked”. Tell us, which of these books inspired the other?

  2. Tyler038583 says:

    I always use dreambible.com when my dreams get weird. A much more practical dictionary than you usually find.

    • LogitheYogi says:

      Have you found it helpful. I am of the opinion that using a dream dictionary does more harm than good. I believe that dream interpretation is a personal experience and requires a personal interpretation. I think people often get side tracked with “prescribed symbolism”.

      • Tyler038583 says:

        You still have to think for yourself with any dream dictionary you use. But, if you read the front page of the site they tell you that they do research studies to correlate real waking life experiences with dream symbols for large groups of people. Basically, they just interview 100 people about a symbol and try to see if what experiences or emotions are the same for all those people. It can creep me out sometimes how accurate it is.

        • LogitheYogi says:

          That’s interesting. Hey, if it works it works. Do you have a fun story to share about one of the interpretations you got from using the book? I’m thinking of how symbolism can change with nationality, gender, and social class. In the book, does it say if the symbolism was consistent across these groups?

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