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to be eaten

I was in a cage with another.We were lowered down into a cone shaped room by a chain,deep below the surface of the earth. Like a cavern. There were a lot of people sitting at tables on the right of me. A huge kitchen on the left.Most things were the colour of a warm coloured clay, or skin.The large hall seemed quietly chaotic and human. But without words or an explaintion I began to understand that we were to be chopped up, cooked and eaten.There was no way out.They began by chopping off my hands.The dream faded just before they did.And I woke calm and well rested.

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Re: to be eaten

Nicola,

This dream interpretation is only a possibility, based on some knowledge of Jungian psychology and symbolism. It is you, the dreamer, that will know if it is close or not. Look for an Aha! feeling. If you do not get a sense of this, then the interpretation probably isn’t close and with your feedback we can again look at the dream and attempt to determine the meaning.

The unconscious makes an essential meaning, an isolated fact, revealed to the conscious mind (cone shape/point). Something restrictive and binding (cage). It is linked to something within the deep recesses of the Psyche (chain/descending into the cone). Great knowledge born of the collective Psyche, the whole of human experience, it is in every one, past present and future, this knowledge contained within. (huge kitchen to the left, a lot of people at tables to the right, quietly chaotic and human, color of skin). Some inner aspect of facilitation is present to assist conscious understanding of the point being made (quietly chaotic and human, without words or explanation). The knowledge comes to consciousness (you begin to understand). Normally I would look to other symbolic meanings for death but this motif, of being chopped, cooked & eaten, seems to fit the archetypal symbolism of death and resurrection, in a psychological sense rather than a physical sense, in that something must die to nourish/bring forth the new. This is inevitable (no way out). An interpretation of the loss of hands could be highly dependent on your current thoughts about midlife, older age, and death. Hands are what we do or hold things with so could symbolize a loss of ability to do something or an indication to release or let go of something.

This dream appears to be a classic coming to consciousness of the mid life stage. And with this, the first inkling of the next stages, that of older age and death. Knowledge of the restrictive and binding aspect of physical life to physical death, comes about through the cycle of life, and the psychological ramifications of this knowledge.

If this interpretation seems to fit, the MDS site has a great deal of helpful information regarding mid life transition. Click the link to access Myths-Dreams-Symbols Midlife Issues for Men and Women.

Please respond with your thoughts, both about the dream and interpretation.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Thanks Kathy,I thought that was a great interpretation and I was amazed you thorght it so "mid life".It is, isnt it.Thanks for the tip on imfo. about the midlife. The cone shape gets into my architectual dream landscape oftern. And the direction Im travelling in seems significant. This is the first time Ive traveled to the 'big end', and indeed life and dream tell me to let go (hands being chopped off). I still have more to say,but need more time to think aboutit. I found your interpretation thorghtful and gave me a larger context in which to see my experience. thank you

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Re: to be eaten

Nicola,

Thank you, for your thoughtfulness and response. Something I learned from Steve is to try different ‘views’ of a specific dream image. The first image of a cone shape that came to mind is a two dimensional side view, a pyramid like structure. Then a view from above looking down, it changes to a dot, the tip, within a circle, the base. This, along with what follows, seemed to symbolize the individual Psyche entering the sphere of collective Psyche.

If I may inquire about ‘quietly chaotic and human’? Could it be described as the quiet hum of many individual humans’ thinking, their thoughts? Or can you provide additional thoughts/perceptions on this?

I have experienced this several times while sleeping both prior to a dream and without a dream following. It occurs in a place I call a ‘void’ because it, ‘my Self’ and ‘others’ I encounter there, lack physical form, is merely space and thought. (I experience dreams with all the sensations of the five senses). I have wondered if this is the collective Psyche or if it is a dream of my Psyches’ preferred symbolism for the collective.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Kathy, Now that's a question I really don't know about.However,you are asking around, and going with what feels about right, and that's exactly what I would do. The dreams I have are very visual.Dreaming with the 5 sences sounds great! So,in my dream these murmerings were from'people'(almost),and clay coloured.Their talk was not something I recognised. (by the way, my apologies,I made a mistake, the kitchen was on the right, and the dining area on the left.Does this have much impact on an interpertation?) The dream still doesn't feel positive; like I'm going in the right direction. The chain wasn't coming from the deep resess, but was lowered from above, closser to ground level.(Doing 'active imiagination'I am not supposed to be there,and I was to be got rid of as fast as possible.they did not want to be seen.) [In the to hard basket I think!] However I had a look at the handless maiden tale.Via the site surlalunefairytales.com ,and there was my story! graphiclly. I mean I have been 'phisically'ill all my adult life,and now have a young child. So now back to the cone,before I leave you.The cone always has a 'spiralness'to it.'I' am always inside it,and nearly always traveling to the pointy end,and there is usually a door or opening there.These dreams have made sense. Perhaps the unconcious is making the point and I can't see it because I'm not at the point.But that Handless Maiden story does help me see where I'm up to in my story. Perhaps you have some more thorghts?

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Re: to be eaten

Kathy, Do you remember wondering if your dream mummerings were from your unconcious or from the collective unconcious? I think that is my dilema with this dream.The ego sacrifice theme has been just a little to pervelant in my past young life and dreams.The kind (of sacrifice)you don't choose;so I'm wary of the theme in such a place. So just because the dream was situated underground,does this mean I am in the land of the collective unconcious or my unconcious with it's limited experience. This must be a common question theme. Please forgive me if it seems I have not accepted your interpertation;you can see I'm still thinking about it.

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Nicola,
Thank you for your responses! I'm tied up with some unexpected work (day job) issues that need attention. I apologize for the delay and hope to respond to your posts tomorrow.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Nicola,

A dreamer’s emotions and thoughts about a dream are significant and aid in uncovering a dream meaning. That you perceive a negative quality to the dream is important.

Every item in a dream likely holds symbolic meaning, including direction. Some possible meanings of left/right:
Left: logic, reason, analytical, impersonal, objective or parts.
Right: intuition, feelings, disorder, personal, holistic.

Kitchen is a place to prepare nourishment. Dining room is a formal place to consume or take in nourishment, including possible ritual undertones (saying grace, always setting the table in a prescribed manner or layout, etc). A broader scope of symbolism regarding direction, kitchen and dining room could indicate a need to take a different approach or an opposite direction, in adapting something to make it suitable, possibly some prescribed procedure or behavior. Opposite of the downward spiral, to move upward.

Clay color is dependant on the organic components. Clay is malleable in its natural state yet hard when fired. This likely has personal meaning so can not determine what this means to you.


With the personal information in your other dream post the repeating dreams of cone and spiral, moving toward the small end of a cone, could represent advancing restriction or confinement. The spiral could represent your Self as an abstract quality, like that of a DNA spiral. I often look at dictionary definitions in seeking symbolism, for lesser known uses in either contextual and/or discipline specific definitions. One definition of cone that stood out is ‘visual receptor cell sensitive to color’. While not a useful literal meaning, symbolically it could represent recognition, of seeing something clearly.

Perhaps the point of the dream is an abstract view to Self needing to move toward a clear understanding of the restrictive or confining nature of the illness.

Are you a normally active person who finds it difficult to relax or slow down? Does this activity level tend to aggravate the illness? And is this level of activity driven not by need, but by some ‘unknown’ inner restlessness? And perhaps...there is synchronicity of The Handmaiden’s Tale with overcoming this issue.

Thanks ever so much for your patience and your detailed responses.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Thanks Kathy, You have persisted with me and this dream and so thanks! I’mglad you brought up the subject of the cone again,reading it helped me find a better way to discribe them.They are like sea snails,as they have a point,unlike the land snails. These huge snail shapes occur so oftern in my dreams ,and the shape is so old ,I could develop a little more confidence in the processes within them. The story of the handless maiden fits over my life like a ‘glove’ (ha…I couldn’t resist). I wonder, would the collective unconscious insist I travel the path of the Handless Maiden ? My dream may be saying this (the collective cut off my hands (first)).In many ways I have fought against what I was dealt.I wonder if the collective(or my psyche)insists that I accept and learn from the path/tale(for the good of me and all)???I’d be curious to hear what you think. I have been very ill all my adult life, so I’ve had time to get use to it. But getting use to something is not the same as accepting it(and accepting it is not the same as giving in)Getting a good perspective has always been tricky. I’ve preferred insisting it shouldn’t be. Explaining the way you have come to a meaning of the symbols has been very helpful.Reminding me about using dictionarys a good idea.And spelling stuff out about left and right,thanks. Nicola

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Re: to be eaten

This is a bit hard to read, as my computer seems to compress all my words and won't leave the spaces!@#$%^&*

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Re: to be eaten

Nicola,

If you have time visit this site for more information with a Jungian perspective on symbolism of the spiral:

OneWomansMind.net

I'm not sure I understand the connection of the Handless Maiden and 'My dream may be saying this (the collective cut off my hands (first)).' and 'I wonder if the collective(or my psyche)insists that I accept and learn from the path/tale(for the good of me and all)???'

Rather than collective Psyche, would responsibility lay with patriarchal society and of course, Self? In what way would the collective Psyche seek to damage the feeling aspect of Self? If I understood correctly, and I could very well be incorrect!, the psychological implications of this tale are about the helpless trait thrust upon females by powerful masculine society and the adoption of this very trait by the female which leaves her feeling aspect without proper development. Hence, emotional detachment and inability to bond emotionally with herself and others. Only by reaching into the unconscious to rescue the true Self is the feeling aspect healed and the individual Psyche regains it's original balance in this aspect.

The Psyche calls for wholeness, to be complete and balanced, through the life long path. We are each dealt a different yet similar hand. Some things we have control over, and others we don't. For me, what I can work with and through, rather than against, heals.

And thanks for the bringing up the spiral symbol topic. Found that web site and it looks interesting. I'll spend some time exploring!

Look forward to your thoughts.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Kathy,
I have so much to think on now . I want to go over every thing carefully , and then get back to you after a few days . Terrific link !
with many thanks , Nicola

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Kathy,
Going back to your original dream interpretation I was able to see/feel where it fits in to the scheme of things. If I interpret it in a way that I have given back or ‘let go’ of a felt responsibility. If I understood it as not really mine alone , I would be making room in my own and my child’s life for what I think Jung called The Great Mother. (perhaps that is not his way of saying it).
I think this dream comes after, or is part of my feeling outcome, from an apocalyptic dream I had had a few nights before. The way I think of my life has altered dramatically , and it’s become clearer to me just what that is through the dreams. In both dreams the huge cone/spiral shape was repeated ;one above ground ,one below.
I’ve also been doing more reading! On this site ,and the one you mentioned (I liked that one). Have you been to www.aras.org (Archetypal Images from the Collective Unconscious. Online) I suspect you may have. In the intro page there is access to an image from a book called The Body. It is The Dismemberment of Watakame, from Mexico. This is not my culture, but the picture and description struck a cord. (a good feeling cord, some sacrifices lie that way).
However, I still I don’t think I was wanted there. What you said about the direction of the kitchen and café/dining area seemed important ,and I still can’t understand why. However, you said ..”Opposite of the downward spiral, to move upward.” …and it has occurred to me that it could refer to me not developing a fatalistic approach ,with my new sense of place in the world. Which would make sense.( I would still like to hear how the placement of the kitchen and café tables gave you that idea. …If you have the time)

It’s been great talking with you , Kathy.
Nicola

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Re: to be eaten

Kathy,
I forgot to mention that I agree with you about the conclusions that can be drawn from the Handless Maiden tale, and yeh like many women my history and many internal patterns are shaped by the fear aspect of patriarchy . The tale is very relevant to me . However, on thinking about it again, there was a feeling/image of dismemberment in the dream so, in the end, I returned to that for the story of the dream.

Regards, Nicola

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Nicola,
It is good to exaine other sources. Glad you found an interpretation that fits with you, that's most important.

The interpretation relied on archetypal symbolism of the rooms, locations and direction of movement, in relation to the entire dream.
Defining each symbol, then combining the metaphors: kitchen/nourishment/adaptation with logic, reason, impersonal, objective
Dining room/Ritual/habitual with intuition, feelings, disorder, personal, holistic. The positive movement would then be to go opposite by ascending or raising to consciousness through preparation and/or transformation (kitchen on left) of habitual use of intuition, feelings, disorder, etc. (dining room).

You stated it quite right. Initially most don’t desire to plumb the contents of the deep unconscious. A difficult task in Self work is to examine unconscious content, bring issues to consciousness and resolve them. Yet, the work must be done if one is to find healing and balance. Initially the ego resists Self work, for with this ego must develop past it’s current undeveloped state.

I hope I answered your question. Please let me know if I left off anything.


Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Thanks Kathy,
…for writing it out so clearly. (sorry about the initial mix up in the placement …always knowing my left from my right doesn’t come naturally to me )
So I’ve written it into two columns .
Left, dining -logic, reason, analytical, impersonal …
Right, kitchen - intuition, feelings, disorder…
I was at the far left of the room, when they began to chop me up.
(Over time it might become clearer to me)

I am curious again, when you say “Initially most don’t desire to plumb the contents of the deep unconscious .“ …I get the impression you suspect me of lacking curiosity for such depth . ..I would say that I am choosing my “ battles”…. For my ego to be dismembered , and then devoured , is not what I call …‘In relationship’…I strive for all the parts of me to be heard and known …. I mean , is one part of the psyche being sacrificed to another … the same as examining unconscious content or bringing issues to consciousness and resolving them ? ( have I heard you right?)

I may sound argumentative ( and I am a bit embarrassed about this ), but you can see I hope, that I have found these discussions extremely interesting , and useful.

With warm regard , Nicola.

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Nicola,
Not at all! The Fourm is an open place to explore insights. This allows us to honestly and openly question not only our Self but the insights of others. This is truly dialogue, being free to speak the mind!

By examining your dreams you have already engaged in Self work, in the Heroes Journey, you travel that path. "However, I still I don’t think I was wanted there." The inference came from this sentence. Many times I is ego. And what ego wants is usually not what Self wants, they are in conflict. This conflict can express as ego defense, a defense mechanism, which is what this scene and your report of 'feeling' seemed to infer. The ego wants you to think you're not wanted in the inner realm, attempting to deter you from engaging in this inner work, so to save ego current role in Self. But you overcome this, see it for what it is, engaging and plumbing those deep unconscious issues, bringing them to consciousness.

And it is true, overwhelmingly people do not heed the call. They remain in the social life, rather than living an authentic life. I like to believe those here working and offering insight and support to others, including my Self, are choosing a different path, that of the authentic life.

Although, we may begin seeing spikes of much higher traffic on the Forum. A global shift in consciousness, more people compelled to explore and decipher those deep inner messages coming through dreams.

Kind regards,
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Oops - forgot to respond on the other...

In the mythological aspect, dismemberment is a step in rebirth. Something must be disassembled, before it can be properly reassembled.

I have often dream about fixing white ceilings, having to tear out bad or broken parts and replace with new materials. This, in my Psyche, is dismemberment and rebirth. Tearing out the old, repairing, to make it whole.

As Jung points out, this is done in stages, or as you say picking battles. When the Psyche is ready to address an issue, and not before, the gauntlet is thrown, sides taken up and the battle ensues. The Psyche must have the necessary foundation of one level complete, before moving to the next step. We can not make one giant leap to wholeness. It is attained slowly and methodically, one issue, at a time.

Many thanks!
Kathy

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Re: to be eaten

Hi Kathy,
Thanks for explaining , and for being OK with all my questions .
Robert Johnson wrote a book -INNER WORK. In it he explains a process of active imagination ,as a way of working with dreams. And this is how I got this information about not being wanted there . I am not assuming that the unconscious would always treat ‘me’ so. But this time it did.
OR it is that, as I was , I was not welcome. OR it is/has happened and that is what this change in me is .
In daily life I tread a thin line, with serious illness and a young child . So I am cautious of what sacrifices I make ; even to, or especially to, the unconscious .
We have talked plenty, and I have a lot of imfo to mull over.
With many thanks, Nicola.

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