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The Ladybug that Grew Big

I had a dream just last night in which I was diving down into a shallow stream of crystal clear flowing water. At the bottom of the stream I grabbed a handful of pebbles and a small ladybug that didn't move and seemed like it was dead. When I came up out of the stream I put the pebbles and little ladybug in a special box for safekeeping. Then some other events took place which I don't remember. Later when I opened the box I found that the ladybug grew to about the size of a golf ball and it was alive. I decided to set it free because I realized that it couldn't survive inside the box and needed to eat.

From what I have studied about dream archetypes diving to the bottom of a body of water symbolizes plunging deep into the unconscious. Ladybugs symbolize good luck.

Can anybody put the rest of the puzzle together?

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 36 years old, Canada, Ontario

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Re: The Ladybug that Grew Big

Warren,
Are you ready for a long description to what seems to be a simple dream? No dream is simple.

Diving into deep waters would usually symbolize reaching into the deep unconscious {an ocean or a deep lake}. A shallow stream would more likely be something within your subconscious, closer to the surface rather than deep seeded. But because its is a part of something not conscious it could point to deeper associations within the unconscious. There may have been a recent experience you noted and placed in your subconscious {still within a stones throw to conscious knowledge} that have associations to issues that are deep unconscious. You noted the experience {emotional} because it was something you had already had experienced before {or an experienced related to a past experience}.

The ladybug's colors could also suggest something in the subconscious as well as something recent that is associated with deeper issues. Orange is a color that often represents consciousness but with black spots {which represents the unconscious} it could suggest something more available to your conscious mind. Often such dream colors would point to recent experiences that you consciously noted {emotionally} and placed it in your subconscious because it struck a 'nerve'. Also the water is a stream, which may suggest a flow of subconscious energies that have been refreshed and brought back to conscious memory {or threatens to do so}. It is at the bottom of the flow of emotional energies but alive due to the flow of forces it possesses.
Every word/image in a dream must be looked at to determine its possible meaning/application as well as its relevance to the dream action.

Your dream begins with your diving 'down' into a shallow stream of crystal clear water. Something within the mind is clear when you look into your unconscious memory, unresolved emotional experiences that possess energies due to their powerful forces to are kept alive due to their energies. Pebbles are small rocks and rock are solid foundations of emotions. Pebbles can symbolize emotional annoyances but since they are smooth and small they are not as obvious or perhaps emotionally disturbing as a solid rock 'falling on you'. You grab a handful of pebbles which may suggest an ability to grab hold/control of small annoyances in your life. Once again you may be looking at something recent that was an annoyance because the subconscious recognized its associations to deeper issues from your past. The deeper issues would be in the deeper unconscious and these may have worked their way up to the subconscious {seeking attention so you will resolve the issues} because of a recent experience. They become an annoyance because they are closer to your conscious mind and want to be recognized.

Within these troubling annoyances there is a ladybug. The 'lady' part may suggest a feminine attributes {your anima}, an emotional issue that is 'bugging' you. Being dead may suggest something in your past that you consciously have 'laid to rest' {forgotten about, ignored or repressed}. But unconsciously because of its emotional energies it is still very much alive. You had placed these past experiences in a 'box' which itself could symbolize the unconscious. It is also a box where it is kept hidden away {deep unconscious contents}. The safekeeping aspect is how the mind works to keep the emotional energies hidden so not to consciously bother you. At least until a time in life when these things tend to come back up {mid-life, ages 35-55}, seeking conscious attention so they can be resolved. You have hidden past emotional experiences that had made their way to your subconscious mind, ready for conscious attention.

The other events you don't remember may point to exactly what you don't remember {what is in the box}. Dreams often will make statements that are true but because of the symbolic system of language dreams use it is often easier to not remember parts of the dream with what you don't remember being an important message of the dream.

Later is now. When you have something that jogs your memory, or/and you reach that age of midlife when these things start to re-introduce themselves, the later events have associations to earlier experiences in life. What had been reduced to small event in your mind had grown to something much larger. A golf ball being round may suggest past experiences that, when realized/confronted/resolved will lead to a more harmonious life {anything round symbolizes wholeness/harmony}. The golf part may have personal connotations {do you play golf} but the ball is a wholeness symbol. It could be that golf is something that takes you away from other important activities {just a suggestion}. This part of you is now alive, it is something that you are actively participating in that has associations to an emotional conflict from earlier life {like father/like son?}.

Then there is the decision to set it free. This is the unconscious mechanism which nature provides to set free emotional energies that have caused/can cause conflicts in your life. Dreams seek to help resolve these emotional issues. What can't survive without these issues being set free is you. You must seek out these issues and find resolution if you wish to be completely whole and live a harmonious life. A part of this wholeness in life is not only resolving the emotional issues from your past but also discovering your creative and spiritual {not necessarily religious} aspects. But its is the emotional issues that must be confronted first since it is those things that keep us from the creative self which is a part of living a spiritual life {living in accord with nature and giving of yourself through creative endeavors}.

What is this dream all about? That question still remains and we will need to analyze other dreams to discover what exactly it is that wants to be brought up from your unconscious, through the subconscious to conscious understanding. I do get the impression there have been recent experiences that have prompted these unconscious 'hidden' things to be uncovered. It could have been an actual experiences that refreshed your memory. Or it could be you are at that age where these hidden things {we all have them} tend to make their way up from the depths to the surface. Jung always looked at a series of dreams to determine what the issues were. Along the way the dreamer begins to make connections and eventually what was 'hidden'is revealed and the emotional healing begins. The issues were always within the unconscious but for one reason or another they had been locked away and pushed down into the unconscious. If you can post subsequent dreams I dare say we will eventually discover {usually sooner than later} what it is this dream is trying to communicate.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 63 Space Coast, Fla.

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Re: The Ladybug that Grew Big

Thanks a lot Jerry, for that very thorough interpretation of my dream from a Jungian perspective.

What you say makes sense about me possibly dealing with some unresolved emotions that are still present in my subconscious and what can't survive without these issues being set free is me. Now that I am nearing middle age I thought I have learned to better control my emotions and put negative past experiences behind me. However, it could be that they still survive in my subconscious.

The dream actually did not have anything to do with golf. I found that the lady bug that I put into the box grew to about the size of a golf ball, but did not turn into a golf ball.

According to a dream dictionary I'm reading the ladybug archetype also symbolizes "good luck." Farmers used to consider them good omens because they ensured a good harvest- they ate harmful bugs that attacked crops. Could my subconscious mind telling me that my good luck is increasing because the ladybug grew larger?

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 36 years old, Canada, Ontario

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Re: The Ladybug that Grew Big

Warren,
I don't look at a symbol/image as a good luck/bad luck application because it would be a prediction and dreams seldom predict. They compensate what we already know {although it may be unconscious knowledge}. In your dream I don't see the ladybug any straightforward indications it is a bout good luck. in life we tend to make our own luck by the actions we demonstrate in life. Do good things, good things usually happen in return. Bad actions, bad results. It is called karma, cause and effect.

To understand the possibilities of what an images may represent we can look to myth and folklore since both myth and dreams use archetypal images in their depiction of emotional/psychological patterns. Here the folklore tale of the ladybug being a symbol of good luck.

The Ladybug is associated with spirituality and religious devotion. The name Ladybug originated in Europe during the Middle Ages, when insects were destroying the crops. Catholic farmers were said to have prayed to the Virgin Mary for help. Soon after, Ladybugs appeared and began eating the pests and saved the crops from destruction. The farmers began to call the Ladybugs “the Beetles of Our Lady” and eventually they were known as Lady Beetles. The Ladybug's red wings are said to represent the Virgin's cloak and the black spots her joys and sorrows.

But we also most consider other aspects of the ladybug, its life cycle and other aspects. And in the context of the dream being a good luck symbol, I would think the dream scenario would parallel the myth if it is going to apply.

But we have to look at the image of the ladybug in the context of the whole dream. In that light we need to also consider other possibilities it may represent. I tend to look at unconscious images not only in their mythological applications but also in the name and colors. The lady bug would suggest feminine qualities {anima} that can be annoying {in they are unconscious and wish to be made conscious}. Or something you are worried about {feminine emotional qualities}. As I stated in my original response the colors can also apply. Orange is the color of the sun, an object that can not be directly observed but holds all the powers. The black spots would be the unconscious, again something not seen but when accessed will lead to healing.


Looking at the context of the dream and applying the good luck possibility we would have to apply the ladybug image with the other images as well as with the actions of the dream. How would a ladybug fit with the shallow stream? Ladybugs are not water creatures. But if you take the symbol and put it into a context as I did in mt analysis it tends to fit. The pebbles can also represent small emotional annoyances in the unconscious that need to be made conscious {working its way from the unconscious through the subconscious to consciousness}. The lady bug is dead which for me suggests something that is not living in consciousness {but is alive in the unconscious}. It is 'boxed' in the unconscious and when let out {to consciousness} comes alive because it is an emotional aspect that has been pushed from consciousness due to the pain it can cause when thought about. These are emotional forces that must be set free from the unconscious so you can consciously recognize the experiences that caused the emotional conflict, and thus start a healing process. The dream is much a like a story in myth and has a plot {the story is of the dreamer's emotional life}. It has a flow and pattern and discerning what the patterns are will lead to the message of the dream.

The one important item that the interpretation must do is fit with the dreamer's life. Dreams are not random stories that have to do with just about anything, they are about the dreamer's emotional life. If it doesn't fit with that whole life {the emotional conflicts built up during life} then there is a wrong analysis and interpretation of the dream. We know from your response there are unresolved emotional issues {we all have them} and when you look at why we have dreams and understand their therapeutic application and then apply what has happened in your life, the dream will match the patterns of emotional behavior. The patterns in dreams will fit with the emotional patterns in your life. Dreams are attempting to help the emotional conflicts.

I think it is best to look at the unresolved emotional issues you are aware of and work with that. Future dreams will help clarify what needs to be understood by the conscious mind so there can be a healing process. As long as the issues remain unresolved you will have dreams trying to communicate there are issues that need resolution.

Post other future dreams and perhaps we will be able to pinpoint the primary issues the dreams are trying to communicate.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 63 Space Coast, Fla.

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