What’s in a dream?
Kari Hohne, author of “The Mind’s Mirror: Dream Dictionary and Translation Guide” and “The Mythology of Sleep: The Waking Power of Dreams” is conducting a dream interpretation workshop at the Lake Tahoe Wellness Center in Kings Beach on May 24 from 1 to 3 p.m. We caught up with her to ask her more about the meaning of dreams.
Can you tell me a little about your background as a dream analyst? I have a Web site http://www.wayofdreams.com that has a free online dream dictionary. It pulls about 1,000 users from around the world each month, and I am able to analyze the common dreams that are being searched. For research purposes, I also offer personal dream analysis. Almost 50 percent of dreams submitted are not from the United States. After analyzing thousands of dreams, I have been able to identify a pattern emerging, where dreams offer a profound type of guidance for the dreamer.
Why do some say dreams offer self-knowledge and direction in life? The reason most people dismiss their dreams is because they view them from the same perspective used in daily life. Dreaming can be viewed as the psyche’s way of breaking through our habitual way of viewing experience. They are cryptic specifically to move us away from our routine perspective. Dream analysis begins to make sense when we view all aspects, lighting, scenery and even the characters in our dreams as a reflection of us as we move toward change and integration. The common dream of being in a familiar house with unknown rooms reveals how we are exploring the unknown potential of our “inner architecture.” The upper floors can symbolize aspirations, while the basement reveals what remains hidden beneath the surface. As a snapshot of our inner world, dreams offer an objective view of what motivates us.
You mention a pattern in all dreams. What is this pattern? Most dreams are about conflict and resolution. The first portion of the dream portrays the conflict at hand. When the landscape suddenly morphs into something else it often includes images from the past, which depicts the root of what caused the conflict. The third portion is always filled with the bizarre symbolism that most people dismiss. This bizarre symbolism however, is richest in transformative clues. It offers the “a-ha” or new way that presents a key or path through the crisis.
What is the most common dream you see? By far, most dreams are associated with transportation symbolism. Riding in a car, whether or not we are driving or being driven will portray our current sense of autonomy. If we are not driving, chances are we are not in control of where we are going in life. Train dreams symbolize traveling down a track laid down before us, while airports and planes symbolize how we move toward our aspirations to “fly.
You mention that dreams teach us about the pathway ahead, in what way? The third portion with its bizarre symbolism usually presents ideas that become prophetic in terms of the future. For example, a client had just been promoted and dreams their boat sank after taking a disciplinarian approach with an insubordinate employee. Initially, the dream starts with police inspecting the bushes in front of a house as a representation of the censoring aspect of the psyche. The dreamer is exploring what has been put out there (front bushes) for public view in terms of their behavior and whether or not it is acceptable. The second portion shows the dreamer getting on a bus (not driving) with men in black suits as the idea of conformity and not being authentic. These two portions show the crisis and how it was created by taking on a role that had not yet been integrated. In the third portion the dreamer is told that it will take Sears three months to fix the boat. This dream seems silly, yet, in real life, the situation was resolved in exactly three months. The dreamer’s boss or “dependable repair people” fixed the problem when the insubordinate employee was asked to resign.
Most people do not remember their dreams. How can they be important? Dreams are allowing us to release outworn patterns of thought whether or not we remember them. As another type of sensory organ, we process and release ideas that keep us from growing in a changing world. The more unsettling or repetitive the dream, the more likely we will remember it and try to understand it. REM proves everyone dreams nightly. By taking an active approach in understanding our dreams, we are able to accelerate our growth.
If you are interested in attending her workshop, RSVP to (530) 559-7016 by May 23.