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Going over a Waterfall

I just recently had a dream that puzzles me and I was looking for some input as to what it might mean. Any thoughts on this would be appreciated.

Dream:
A old man, of African American origin, is standing in a body of water and I am standing with him. He presents to me this necklace. I take it and hold it up to the night sky brightened by a full moon. I began to chant some words in a foreign language. As I'm doing so I start to back away from the old man while trying to fasten the necklace about my neck. I don't trust this old man. Suddenly I turn and jump over a waterfall. The old man screams "NO." and follows after me. At the bottom of the fall I see him coming down. I panic and try to run. END OF DREAM

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 32,Michigan

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

Re: Going over a Waterfall

Nina,
Here is an article that deals with a dark masculine figure as in appears in a woman's dream. Read it and let me know your thoughts. Then I will give a definite interpretation to your dream.

THE DARK ANIMUS (NEGATIVE)

If the animus is negative or dark, it may take the form of the archetypal Dark Stranger, someone like Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights or Beethoven's father as depicted in the film Immortal Beloved.

In this form it lures a woman away from any real relationships and particularly those with a man. Von Franz describes this state of consciousness as a "cocoon of dreamy thoughts, filled with desire and judgments about how things 'ought to be', which cut a woman off from the reality of life."

These are some of the other characteristics of a negative animus:

brutality
recklessness
empty talk
silent, obstinate, evil ideas

There is a more destructive side to this dark animus as well. "By nursing secret destructive attitudes," von Franz explains, "a wife can drive her husband, and a mother her children, into illness, accident, or even death."

I once read for a girl who will spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair. She said she "always knew" she would have a near fatal accident driving over a bridge near her home (in a small town in the northwest). One of her brothers died a tragic death as well. Now a younger sister is threatened with drugs anuse. I remember suggesting to my client that she find out why her mother was destroying her own children. To my horror, she registered no reaction to this statement which I had said to shock her into the reality of this dangerous situation.

Von Franz continues, "she may decide to keep her children from marrying -- a deeply hidden form of evil that rarely comes to the surface of the mother's conscious mind." I think M. Scott Peck deals with in The Road Less Traveled as well. Then she gives a memorable example: "A naive old woman once said to me, while showing me a picture of her son, who was drowned when he was 27, 'I prefer it this way; it's better than giving him away to another woman.' "

This is how the animus talks inside in the dark way. "In the depths of the woman's being, the animus whispers: 'You are hopeless. What's the use of trying? There is no point in doing anything. Life will never change for the better.'"

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 55 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Gerard,
This article is rather interesting but what puzzles me is when it says "dark" is it referring to the animus' skin or character?
Some time ago I used to have these dreams that involved a young man of Native American origin. Over the course of years he appeared in my dreams but I was never afraid of him. I always had this comforting feeling after seeing him in a dream but it has been four years since the last time that I saw him. now if there's any male figures in my dreams it's my husband who I've been with for the last seven years.
The part in the article where the girl stated that she always knew she would have a near fatal accident was disturbing because I'm always envisioning my death, particularly car accidents. Was the article suggesting that the girl's mother was unknowingly destroying her children? If so, then how? Is the mother's unconscious destructive attitudes passed on to her children?
Nina

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 32,Michigan

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Nina,
Here is the article in its entirety When Anima meets Animus. Read the whole page, it has a lot of valuable info and in an understandable language.

I haven't explored this site as thorough as I intend but what I've read it has some excellent insights on Jungian psychology, from an astrologist's point of view. Astrology has a lot of truths about it and combined with Jungian philosophy provides excellent insights to the dream and the psyche.
This particular part of the article seemed to address the symbols in your dream. It offered different possibilities, in line with Jungian philosophy. I wanted to offer the article so to get your response to it. By what you provided in your response I now have a better idea as to how best to approach the dream.

I will give it all a good look Tuesday morning, including your questions. I'm a self employed contractor and this is my busy season. I want to give my best impressions to your dream and don't want to do it in hast.

Your dream isn't the typical animus dream. The wise old man of Africian America origin is best suited to appear in a man's dream, symbolic of his shadow. Something struck me about the dream that encouraged me to ask a few questions before trying to interpret the dream. The article seemed a good stimulus for thought that could help you compare, and let give your more, deeper personal thought to.

The color of the man's skin, the man himself most likely represents an aspect of you, your masculine aspect {see anima/animus in left column}. It is symbol and metaphor. I say most likely because there are always exceptions to the standard patterns. To say any fixed meaning is law, we can't, and shoudn't do that.

In your dreams in the present, does your husband play the same role as the black man or is it totally different? If you have other info that might give clues to the dream please include them. Anything you feel that may relate to the African American man including actuarl persons earlier in life, if any.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 55 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

Re: Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Well, I don't know if this makes a difference or not but both I as well as my husband are both African American. In my dreams my husband seems to be more so a silent partner; he's there but not really active unless I tell him to do something. He's always by my side but it's like he's a statue. I'm usually the active one.
Growing up I didn't know my father. I met him when I was 13. I left home to live with my father when I was 16 but even though we lived in the same house we never really had a close relationship.
As a child I spent my summers with my grandparents. My grandfather was a quiet man but until this day, even though he's now gone, I hold a deep affection for him.
This dream of the old man is the first that I've had.
Most dreams that I have that involve men that I'm not familiar with usually are frightening; I'm either being chased or I'm fighting for my life. Which brings to mind something that is probably off the subject but then again it could give some history behind my relationship with my animus. I previously mentioned seeing a native american man from time to time in my dreams. In a dream a while ago I was gagged and bound by a group of men who were intending to rape me but this native american man came and offered himself in my place. The group of men let me go and raped him instead. That's something that has been puzzling me for some time and I just thought I'd mention it. Oh, does it mean anything if a woman's animus tells her his name?
Nina

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 32,Michigan

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Nina,
Thanks for the additional info. It does make a hugh difference in interpreting your dream. Knowing that you are African American points me toward a different approach to the dream symbol of the old man African American in your dream.

You asked a curious question in your first response that may have a bearing on this dream.
"Is the mother's unconscious destructive attitudes passed on to her children?"
I will get back to that later.

The dream seems to be trying to communicate a need or desire on your part to vocalize a past negative experience {the old man and backing away from him}. There are unconscious contents that need to fully illuminated {communicated}so you can understand it in your waking life {holding the necklace up to the night sky brightened by a full moon}. Backing away from the old man while he is trying to put the necklace around your neck may represent trying to get away from a negative experience that may have involved some older man when you were younger {very often' old' in a dream means the past}. You do not trust this person/aspect. There is a need for a emotional release {jumping over the waterfalls}. There is a fear that this past experience will happen again {At the bottom of the fall I see him coming down}.

I believe the dream is trying to communicate possible negative past experiences that occured when you were younger that has not be fully acknowledged and put in its place. It could be some repressed traumatic experience that you have yet to confront that involved an older man. That experience may be physical or mental abuse. Was there any instances of physical abuse as a child or young teenager? You mentioned the dreams of attempted rape.

My thoughts are that it may be the past experience having to do with your father. We all have that need to reconcile broken relationships with our parents and in your youth you tried to do that with your father. But that failed. What little trust you had in him evaporated when you left at the age of 16.
The dreams of attempted rape, and instead the rape of the old man, may reflect a loss of trust in your father. The only male figure you have had experience with in your life was your grandfather, whom you had an admiration. Unconsciously you may be comparing your father to your grandfather, in which your father comes up short. Instead of you being raped {feelings of being violated, but not in a literal sense of an actual rape}, the old man symbolizes the trust that you expect from your father in comparison to your grandfather. That trust was 'violated' by your father. The rape of the old man is the violation.

But there may be another aspect to the dream that needs attention. You state that in your recent dreams the male figure was your husband {In my dreams my husband seems to be more so a silent partner; he's there but not really active unless I tell him to do something}. There may be a inner fear that the trust question will spill over to the relationship with your husband. That is the reason for asking about destructuve attitudes being passed on. The fear may be that attitude will be passed on to you and your husband's relationship.

And yes, it could be very significant when a name is given in a dream. Apparnetly you have a name in mind. Take that name and together with what I have stated see where it takes you.

In Conclusion
Unless there was some experience in your youth that involved an actual physical abuse {by unknown persons or known persons} then I believe the dream is trying to communicate the unresolved issues involving your father and the inner fears of it affecting your relationship with your husband. Take what I have said and analyze it. Let me know your thoughts and perhaps we can further discover the meaning of your dreams.

A Note About the Intuitive Feeling Associated With This Dream
When I first read this dream I had this intuitive feeling that something was different and questions needed to be asked. I don't normally ask questions prior to an interpretation, unless my intuitive mind says I need to do so. That was the case in this dream. Perhaps it was purely speculative thinking on my part because of the symbolic old African American man being in a woman's dream {I did not know that she was also African American}. But there was something that questioned the dream and needed further explaination. I fully believe that when one studies the dream in great depth {I have been doing just, extensively, for almost 13 years} and expands their intuitive mind, the intuitiveness takes over and sees beyond what the conscious mind is capable of seeing, the hidden things.
Discovering that the dreamer was also African American was a part of the dream that was hidden and 'cried out' for further explaination, intuitively.
Understanding dreams on a universal plane requires expansion of the psyche abilities that are natural to the human condition. But it is real, there is no doubt in my simple mind.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 55 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Gerard,
I read your reply but a couple of things got a bit mixed up.
In my dream the old man gave me a necklace but it was me who was putting it around my neck while backing away not the old man. Also, I didn't know my father until I was 13. When I was 16 I left my mother to go live with my father. We have a relationship but it's not the kind of relationship where I feel like I can talk to him about things that are my mind. Lastly, I had mentioned a previous male figure who appeared in my dreams. I'm assuming he played the part of my animus before I got serious about my husband. It was this male figure who was raped not the old man. I just wanted to clear that up before I continued further.

Unfortunately there has been a past traumatic experience in my life. When I was a young girl, under the threat of physical harm, I was forced to have sex with two boys who I thought were friends. I never told my mother about it.
Later when I moved in with my father he was living with his girlfriend who had a daughter younger than me and a son a few years older than me. I had developed what I thought was a brother/sister type relationship with him until one night he tried to force me to have sex with him. I pleaded with him and he changed his mind. I never told my father about it or anyone else until I became seriously involved with a former boyfriend, which was 15 years ago. I also told my husband when we started dating. These two are the only two people that know. When I told them nothing was ever said in response so I don't know how it affected them and I never brought it up again.

On a positive note my husband and I have a good relationship but I hide the fact that I don't completley trust him. When I was living with my mother I witnessed her and her second husband fighting often. He wasn't dependable, leaving her to carry most of the financial burden. My mother made it a point to raise me to be independent, to think for myself and not have to "depend on a man", as she put it. When I moved in with my father I watched him emotionally wear down his girlfriend and constantly ridicule her children. He never had anything good to say. Although none of this was directed towards me, seeing it has left a negative impression of my father with me.

When I was 20 I moved in with my grandparents on my father's side. This was a peaceful time for me. When I was 26, a year after I moved out, my grandmother passed away. It was after her death that it became known that my grandfather had three children by two other women while he was married to my grandmother. This completely devastated me because I trusted him. Although I didn't agree with a lot of his "old fashion" ways, I believed he was at least a honorable and faithful man full of wisdom and integrity. From then on I haven't felt the same about him.

The only postive male image in my life has been my grandfather on my mother's side. He's now gone and I miss him dearly. The strangest thing is my husband acts so much like him.

I'm still interested in knowing if a mother can pass on her unconscious destructive attitude to her children because my mother does have a negative attitude towards men and I often feel as though I'm fighting this attitude within myself. Which makes me wonder have my negative experiences with men resulted from my mother's negative experiences? And am I left to break a cycle that she's unable to break herself? Also are the anima/animus, shadow, archetypes and etc passed from parents to children through the genes? I know that might seem to be a far fetched questioned but I'm wondering does the psyche of the parents affect the psyche of a unborn child?
Thanks for your input, I really appreciated it. Nina

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 32,Michigan

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Nina,
The necklace is symbolic of communication. With the new info you provide we now can say 'old' probably represents 'past' experiences. Correcting my mistake about the time with your father changes a lot about the dream. Specifics do matter.

The rape in your dream is addressing the actual life experiences. Again specifics make a big difference. The way the dream unfolds addresses the rape aspect but the old man seems to be addressing some other aspect of your life.

The distrust of the old man probably reflects in some way the inability to completely trust your husband. We can say now that the old man was your grandfather. Finding out about his other life is the distrust reflected in your dream. Orginally in your dream the old African American man was shown in a positive way. In the end you distrusted him. That reflects the actual events in your life.
My asking about your statement "Is the mother's unconscious destructive attitudes passed on to her children?" was headed in the right direction. You probably have a fear, albeit unconscious, of possessing the destructive attitudes.

After all is said, corrected and done, your dream is actually reflecting your life's circumstances. Comparing the dream symbols with your actual life experiences, they fit together. The unresolved trust is probably the message the dream is wanting to communicate. Being unable to trust the masculine, actual males and your own masculine qualities is something you may need to resolve so it does not lead you to those destructive attitudes you fear you may inherit.

A Note About the Intuitive Feeling Associated With This Dream
As for the intuitive aspect I brought up in my last response. Thus my questions instead of a direct interpretation. I sensed something about this dream that needed clarification, something different in most posted dreams. After the final clarification provided by Nina in her last post, that intuitive sense seems to have been well placed. Always trust the intuitive Self. That is, if you have put total trust in it.

Thanks Nina. This has been a real learning experience for those of us who take the dream serious. If you have more questions, other dreams please do post them.

Gerard

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 55 Murfreesboro, Tn.

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Going over a Waterfall

Thanks Gerard. Everything now makes sense. I do fear inheriting my mother's destructive attitudes. My disappointment in my grandfather was pretty much the straw that broke the camel's back which might be why the image of the old man was used to represent all of the distrust that has built up over the years. In your last post you stated that "Being unable to trust the masculine, actual male and your masculine qualities is something you may need to resolve so it doesn't lead you to those destructive attitudes you fear you may inherit."
How can I find out more about the masculine qualities and how to trust them?
Thanks again for all you help. Nina

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 32,Michigan

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

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