Remembering and Interpreting Dreams

Remembering Dreams

The obvious first step in dream interpretation is to remember them. If you have difficulty in remembering your dreams, the probable reason is that you have ignored them for so long the subconscious no longer tries to bring them to your conscious memory. If this is the case, you must program yourself to remember. This can be done through affirmation. During meditation, and just before going to sleep, tell yourself very firmly: "I will remember my dreams". Do this three times. Release the command. Then again tell yourself, very firmly, three times: "I will remember my dreams". Release the thought. Then for the third time, repeat the three commands: "I will remember my dreams". So you instruct yourself nine times in all.

The second step in interpretation is recording the dreams. Place a pad and a pencil by your bed for this purpose. This very act, in itself, reinforces the command to remember. When you first awaken — even before that eye-opening cup of coffee! — jot down notes on what you remember. Don't worry about trying to get everything in perfect order at this point. The important thing is to capture what you can, even if you only have time to make a few brief notes. You will find that later on you will be able to recall more of the details of the dream. Then write down all the details that you can remember. Describe the people, their identities, occupations, clothes, the state of their emotions and their activities. Note your attitude towards them and their attitudes towards you. Describe everything you see, feel and hear. Pay special attention to the numbers of things and their colors. It is all important. Then try to arrange your notes in the order in which they were dreamed.

Once you have completed your notes and organized them you can begin the task of interpretation. First of all, examine the dream to see if it fits any of the events of the preceding day. This will explain a few of your dreams. If this test fails, then you must determine whether the dream is literal or symbolic.

A literal dream is one in which the main dream character or image is a real person or thing in your life, or on your mind, at the time. If the literal interpretation makes sense, you may have found the key. When the literal interpretation fails to make sense, the dream is obviously symbolic.

A symbolic dream is one in which the dream character and images cannot be taken literally, as a real person or thing. Then the image is that of an aspect of you, the dreamer. Then the ancient wisdom of the Universal Symbols should be applied.

As you first begin to work with symbology, you may still have difficulty unraveling the tangled threads; you may only decipher part of the mystery. Don't worry about this for it is quite natural in the beginning. Continue to affirm that you will remember. Continue to faithfully record all of the details that you can. As you do, you will find that the symbols will gradually begin to clear, as you and your higher self develop a dialogue that you can consciously understand. The hidden symbol in one dream will suddenly be revealed in another. When this begins to happen you should start to compile your own personal Dream Dictionary. Take a notebook that is not used for any other purpose and divide it into alphabetical sections. As you discover the meanings of new symbols, write them down. Soon you will find that you have an extensive set of personal symbols which will permit nearly total interpretation of all your dreams.

Personal Symbols

Many published books on dream interpretation provide the reader with hundreds of symbols and simplified interpretation. Other than listings of Universal symbols, such books are totally misleading. Each of us has his or her own unique personal symbology, based on our experiences in this life. For example, two elderly ladies dream of a cat. One of the ladies has lived a spinster life shared with a succession of cats that she has loved and pampered. The second lady has a very traumatic memory of a wild cat which scratched her severely during her childhood. It is obvious that a single interpretation of "cat" will not satisfy both dreamers. To the first lady, the cat is a warm, loving companion. To the second, the cat is an evil, dangerous creature that brings pain. Therefore, it is necessary for the dreamer to analyze the symbol from the standpoint of his or her own personal feelings.

The Repetitive Dream

Many dreams are repeated in order to emphasize their meaning or to insure that they are noticed. This may or may not be obvious to the dreamer. Usually dreams come in a series of three. Sometimes their symbology will be quite similar. At other times you may record three dreams of entirely different symbology, but upon interpretation find that the underlying theme for each is almost identical. In either case the source of the dream is attempting to insure that the message gets through and is understood. A dream repeated over days, weeks or perhaps months, indicates something that you have not taken action on. Once you understand, and respond to, the dream, through action or a change in attitude, the dream will cease to occur. Generally the recurring dream is one of the following:

  1. Precognitive or prophetic.
  2. Compensation for an improper attitude.
  3. The result of a traumatic incident which has left a negative impression.

Group Dreams

Among the more spiritually advanced is an occasional tendency to actively share or participate in a dream with someone else. In these cases, the two people are very much in tune with one another on a psychic or emotional level. It does not mean that they are "soul mates", destined for one another. Rather, they are in harmony at some levels in this particular time of their lives and are undergoing similar adjustments on the spiritual plane. Interpretation of the dream should be done the same as with an ordinary dream, but with the "other" person in the dream interpreted as an aspect of yourself.

Dreams Versus Out-of-Body Experiences

The memory of out-of-body experiences (OOBEs) has the same elusive quality as the dream. Consequently it is often difficult to separate the two. One marked difference is the sensation of awareness. In a dream, the visual awareness of the self is in one direction only. As with physical sight, you "see" only what is in front of you. In the OOBE, however, your awareness is all-encompassing. You see not only what is in front but also what is behind, above, below and on the sides — all at the same time. Do not attempt to interpret an OOBE as you would a dream.

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