Dream Analysis/Interpretation by Dream Analyst
Gerald Gifford {at Forum #1}

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Since 2012

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Shadowy figure

I am walking around an unknown city and there's this shadowy male figure who I am persuing. He goes into this old warehouse on a motorbike and starts riding up the stairs, I chase him up the stairs and he is headed towards a door at the top. When he gets to the top he jumps down the stairs and runs back out the warehouse door and tried to close it shut and lock me in. I make it back down the stairs and get through the door just in time. I grab the figure securely and take him to a restuarante in this arcarde area where two familiar and oblivious policemen-like men are eating. I think they then apprehended him.

I then find myself climbing another staircase into a cosy room where I sit on a couch in front of a beautiful blonde haired lady, she seems older than me, graceful and kind and nurturing, she seems like a Goddess. She thanks me for catching the shadow and I look up at her in awe as she hovers over me and gently drips her saliva into my mouth. I wake up immediately, blissful and excited (a little blown away actually).

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 27 m Australia

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Re: Shadowy figure

Paul,
I took extra time in analyzing your dream because of the shadow aspects. Often the naming of a dream points to the primary issue a dream is attempting to communicate. In your dream it would be your shadow. The shadow is a part of the unconscious mind consisting of repressed weaknesses, shortcomings, and instincts. These are rejected aspects that often become conscious forces that cause a person to act in a certain way.

There are also indications in the dream images/actions that point to a 'substitution' for what is lacking in your life emotionally. There does seem to be a lack of emotional nourishment which usually points to early life experiences where this was lacking. The substitution I alluded to would be because of the lack of early life nourishment, substituting something in your current waking life for what was lacking. I do sense an awareness of at least parts or aspects of this 'inner shadow' but also an inability or a lack of wanting to change the negative attitudes developed from the lack of emotional nourishment. In other words it is easier and more enjoyable to allow the unconscious energies {your shadow} lead you in life instead of trying to make the needed changes that would deny your shadow its power over your conscious actions.

The question becomes, 'what is it you are using as a substitute'? My sense is it involves relationships and possibly sex. At first I gave thought that your feelings upon awaking from the dream were indicating a positive approach and possible change to the negative attitudes. But the blissful and excited feelings could very easily point to arousement indicated by the actions of the saliva dripping into your mouth. Sensual arousement.

As for the possibility of a positive take on the saliva/mouth image, the actions leading to that could point to a positive interpretation. It is possible it could be doing both. But for it to be a positive it would require a conscious recognition and desire to make changes away from the fixed attitudes you have followed {substitution of nourishment not received in early life}. There could be something else you are using as a substitute but I do believe there is something and it is because of a lack or proper nourishment early in life. The dream images/actions do seem to be clear on this.

A note about the Goddess image. If there is a positive aspect in the dream {as I alluded} then this image could point to spiritual or moral aspects. If you know you are doing something that is not proper {the substitution being something that is harmful physically, emotionally or morally} then this image may be addressing those aspects.

As usual below is how I interpreted the images/actions in your dream. I do this to allow the dreamer to see what each could mean and possibly see other possibilities. I list the dream first and then my interpretation of the images/actions.

Interpretation of Images/Actions
Dream Title: Shadowy figure
-shadowy figure-not yet acknowledged or recognized aspects of self/rejected aspects that need integration/negative aspects of personality, actions in life that 'pursue' you

Dream
I am walking around an unknown city and there's this shadowy male figure who I am persuing. He goes into this old warehouse on a motorbike and starts riding up the stairs, I chase him up the stairs and he is headed towards a door at the top. When he gets to the top he jumps down the stairs and runs back out the warehouse door and tried to close it shut and lock me in. I make it back down the stairs and get through the door just in time. I grab the figure securely and take him to a restuarante in this arcarde area where two familiar and oblivious policemen-like men are eating. I think they then apprehended him.

-walking around unknown city-walking around in your conscious life with unknown aspects that affect your personality and actions
-shadowy male who I am pursuing-seeking to understand/discovering shadow aspects/actual male figure/experiences in life that pursue you for understanding
-old warehouse-stored experiences/memories from your past that need to be recognized and reconciled
-on a motorbike-a means of escape/to free yourself from unconscious influences
-riding up the stairs-the need to coming to recognize unconscious {mental} energies that influence your conscious life
-chase him up the stairs-overcoming 'obstacles' so to have a higher understanding of aspects within yourself psychologically
-he is headed for the door -going in direction that will help you open unconscious 'doors'
-gets to top/jumps down stairs/closes it shut-influential mental energies/pushing them back into the unconscious/ shutting them off from conscious thoughts
-locks me in-emotional aspects within yourself you want to be kept locked in
***Whereas my analysis usually provides an outline of unconscious energies, the following dream actions may also be pointing to recent conscious experiences
-make it back down stairs-bringing unconscious energies to conscious reality
-get through door just in time-surviving the conscious actions created by unconscious energies
-grab figure securely-'fixed' inner energies causing conscious mental issues
-take him to restaurant in arcade area-seeking emotional nourishment by lsoing yourself in pleasures in life
-two familiar policemen are eating-structured environment you have created {physical and mental} as a substitute for fulfillment that is lacking

Dream
I then find myself climbing another staircase into a cosy room where I sit on a couch in front of a beautiful blonde haired lady, she seems older than me, graceful and kind and nurturing, she seems like a Goddess. She thanks me for catching the shadow and I look up at her in awe as she hovers over me and gently drips her saliva into my mouth. I wake up immediately, blissful and excited (a little blown away actually).

-climbing another staircase-climbing out of another negative situation/experience
-into cozy room-mental aspect that allows you to feel secure
-couch in front of beautiful blond haired lady-conscious mental cleaning by balancing negative emotional impulses
-seems older than me-deep inner forces influencing your actions
-kind and nurturing-aspects that provide mental nurturing
-seems like a Goddess-higher awareness that sustain positive reactions
-thanks me for catching the shadow-grasping shadow aspects
-drips her saliva into my mouth-providing stimulus for self expression

Feelings upon awaking: woke up excited/blissful
-feelings related to dream experiences that would reflect actual conscious emotions

Jerry

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Re: Shadowy figure

Thank you so much Jerry for putting in the time for this. Sure was an intense dream.

I had identified the shadowy figure as a representation of my shadow as I have been studying a bit of Jung, and various psychologies etc. and 'bringing things to the surface' for some time now. I am aware of the conflict resulting from the non-integration of some "shadow-parts" and "Me" and there have been times recently that I have feared giving control of my will to the "shadow-parts".

I've thought about your comments regarding the lack emotional nourishment. This may stem from a past long term relationship in which I felt I definitely wasn't nourished in the way I needed and had trouble communicating those needs despite my best efforts. Very distressing, emotionally, my childhood felt like a breeze, relatively.

This dream comes at a time when my life has taken a different track and I am in a situation where the problems of the past don't exist and I feel thoroughly nourished. I am immensly grateful for this (this could be seen as a substitution). I think there is something of a Goddess-worship aspect to my life too, in several forms.

Also, I was wondering, could the Lady be a representation of the Anima?

Thanks again Jerry.

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Re: Shadowy figure

Paul,
In my belief system of concepts a female is always an anima aspect in a man's dream {as well as in a woman's dream but perhaps with a different application related to personality rather than archetypal}. The female image may not always be the primary focus of the dream but will always be relevant to it. I state this with the opinion that a female is representative of the emotions, and because we are human our emotions are the superior motivating factors in our lives. This superior aspect corresponds with the superior function of the feminine psyche over the masculine. The superior feminine function would correspond with the spiritual aspect which Jung saw as the ultimate goal in achieving wholeness in life. I see Jesus as a perfect example of this, being a male but living from the feminine psyche. His masculine tendencies were always secondary to his feminine {God was the opposite}. He displayed his emotions, as is human and not godly {pure objectivity without proper emotions would be masculine}.

There are many aspects of dreams I have learned from experience that will often apply and that are not officially accepted by Jungian academics. One is that the title of a dream is often central to what the dream is focusing/about. Whether it is unconscious or a conscious noting, your shadowy figure is the primary theme in your dream. I have found that he title naming is often very relevant to the central dream theme. I dare say few people realize this when posting a dream because it is as much an unconscious thing. Someone like yourself with knowledge of Jung may consciously name the dream to fit theme but that is not usual. Another instance where the unconscious is establishing itself as a source of knowledge with the intent to convey a message the dreamer needs to recognize and understand. The dream is all about convey messages about emotional energies, especially those that are out of balance and affect the obtaining wholeness {most dreams are focused on negative energies/emotions}.

As for giving control to your shadow parts. They already have control, the task is to recognize what the energies and discover why they have the power they do. That most often goes early life experiences and influences where the foundations of personality and development of attitudes are formed. I dare say some will say I put too much emphasis on this childhood concept as the ground for life long attitudes but with the new science that has demonstrated that the psyche of an infant is capable of vast learning I believe it is only common sense to take a such a view. beyond that my experience in working with dreams and using/pronouncing this concept has met with great success. "Yes, my childhood was not stable as it should have been", is a common response {not necessarily in those words} to an analysis naming childhood years as the foundation for emotional conflicts/issues as an adult. The shadow is another name for childhood outline of powerful emotional deficiencies. It resides in the shadows of the unconscious, unknown to the dreamer but not to conscious actions displayed in the person's life later in life. As are all unconscious energies, they are motivators for these actions.

You state the lack of emotional nourishment were likely related to a past long term relationship. There is no doubt this is true but there are likely deeper reasons for the need for this emotional nourishment. You also stated your childhood felt like a breeze. Could it be you allow it to pass you by not having thoroughly examine all of it? Individuation/self psychology requires a complete examination of the whole life up until the time of the dream. Only then can you access your life as a whole and determine what was 'left in the breeze' {if anything} and not looked at with deep inspection. The dream states climbing another staircase which could suggest at least two issues being addressed in the dream. An experience{s} that is older than the previous experience {the experience you noted in your response}.

I take an interest in your response of a 'Goddess-worship aspect'. You haven't named what current experiences there are that have relieved you from your problems of the past but if there is a 'goddess worship' involved then that worship may be related to the emotional nourishment, or lack of. Could this be apart of the problem, a worship of the 'goddess', not as a higher aspect of the psyche but as a substitute for what is lacking. A worship of the goddess could be female relationships, not always positive. But this is for you to ascertain in your current experiences.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 65 Cocoa, Fl

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Re: Shadowy figure

I was thinking more about the early life experiences which you alluded to. Throughout my childhood, my modelling of my father and older brothers I think led to an idea of masculinity as emotional rigidity, unexpressiveness and insensitivity to some degree. Although I think this is common, I feel as though my innate tendancy is towards sensitivity. My path has lead me to oppose these rigid masculine ideals with fervour and the subsequent realisation of a range of emotions I hadn't noticed having since childhood has been very valuble for me. Some experiences I would describe as feeling like a thorough and powerful re-opening of the 'heart chakra'. I will heed your advice on thoroughly examining my early life.

Regarding Goddess worship. I think my tendancy towards somewhat pantheistic beliefs influences this, and I have made conscious efforts to incorporate forms of feminine divinity in spiritual practices, perhaps as a fulfillment of needs, but also to see what I may find out about myself there.

Thank for your time and thought Jerry, I very much appreciate communicating with someone of your expertise and generousity. Might I add that you have given me a greater incentive to try to remember my dreams, perhaps I'll start a diary

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Re: Shadowy figure

Paiul,
A dream diary would be a good thing to have. Dreams have a message with each dream proving insights to the true self. If you wish to know why you are who you are then your dreams will help in that discovery. By analyzing and interpreting your dreams you will find clues to the emotional energies that motivate personality, attitudes and behavior. And they are fascinating when analyzed. Like a puzzle, when all the pieces are correctly put together a clear picture of the self is revealed. Most often that picture is different from the ego perceived image. Unlike the ego the dream has no bias toward truth. The rigid masculine ideas that motivated you had a foundation and although you may no longer allow those to guide you, understanding where they came from is invaluable in understanding the unconscious energies that still have power to influence your waking life.

As for the Goddess. I too believe in the power of the feminine. I do not have any one belief system when it comes to my spirituality but I do see the Goddess as the primary energy and living from the feminine as the path to true spirituality. God is too ego centered, vengeful, wrathful and with self esteem issues {why else would the first commandment deal with 'other gods' before him}. Jesus had none of these issues and lived from the feminine with a balanced psyche that allowed for objective introspection {the Gnostic Gospels reveals the true Jesus and when analyzed they are pure Buddhism}. There are too many seasonal alternatives to the patriarchal approach to endure the suffering it allows. Going inward is not just a slogan, it is a psychological path that can help heal. Dreams are nature's device in the healing process.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 65 Cocoa, Fl

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