Most of us want to grow or improve in some way: to be happier, wiser, kinder, and more loving. To be more creative, find more fulfilling work. To be better parents or partners. To live with more integrity. To lessen our anxiety and ease our suffering. To free ourselves from the emotional pain and habitual behaviors that fling us into the abyss and wound our relationships.To be more understanding and helpful to others. To feel more connected to the Mystery.
As award-winning author and urban shaman Donna Henes says in writing about the Queen archetype, “The holy elixir that we seek is the transformation of the painful, rejected, neglected, wounded, unsatisfied, unsatisfactory parts of our Self, into the unified, organized, energized, golden glory and grace of the fulfilled Queen. It is through our sincere and complete participation in this process that we learn how to recognize, claim and proudly proclaim our own true power. The power of our fully engaged Self.”
But many of us are at a loss about how exactly to participate in this process. Writing and dreamwork have been my most fruitful practices, but when I tell people how important my dreams are to me, I sometimes sense real perplexity along the order of, “Weird! What are you smoking, lady?”
How can dreams possibly be of any practical use? Because they provide insights about unknown aspects of ourselves that validate our worth and help us grow. I know this because I’ve experienced it. The proof is in the vast improvement in my inner climate: fewer hurricanes, heat waves, arctic blasts, volcanic eruptions, and floods; more balmy air, cooling breezes and refreshing rain. But this is not always readily apparent or easily conveyed to others and can be difficult to understand.
Dreams are natural resources of infinite value. They are available to everyone, and in these hard economic times, the good news is that they are absolutely free! But we have to be willing to mine them, and for that we need time, intention, and a bit of help from more experienced miners who can teach us the trade. To that end, in this and the next few posts I’ll share a bit of what I’ve learned about how dreams aid psycho-spiritual transformation.
My starting point is the Self, which is both our core and our circumference. Some think of it as our soul, the totality of who we are and who we have the potential to become. Jung called it the archetype of wholeness and in later years referred to it as our god-image and connection to the Mystery some call God. Composed of the twin drives for self-preservation (i.e. masculine logos, represented in alchemy by the King archetype) and species preservation (feminine mythos/eros symbolized by the Queen), the Self shapes our ideas about God and is the source of our irresistible compulsion to grow into wholeness, consciousness, and enlightenment.
The Self is our inner Beloved, a fresh, never-ending fountain of love, creativity, wholeness and sacred meaning that reveals itself in the symbolic images and soulful dramas of our dreams. Why does it do this? Because it has a natural benevolence that feels like love to us. Like a sleeping princess waiting for the Lover Prince to awaken her with a kiss, the Self rests at the core of our being, calling our heroic egos to their destiny of merging with the indwelling Mystery.
To be continued….
Ego and God-Image: Part VII
Intellectually the Self is no more than a psychological concept, a construct that serves to express an unknowable essence which we cannot grasp as such,
Dreams have been a great inspiration to me thru my life.
Being of two cultures, speaking two languages and thinking
in imagery and metaphor, dreaming life has been of utmost
importance to understanding myself.
Thank you for writing about dreams as I always want to keep
growing and learning about how they influence our mind and
how we can realize our true Self thru this link to it.
So happy to have found your blog.
Yes, excellent point. Inspiring is a very important part of what dreams are for me too. When you understand the imagery of a dream it feels like you’re breaking through a wall, or seeing through a mist, into a magical realm you always suspected was there but never knew how to get to before. Dreams are like a doorway into that place which is filled with insights that will bring you riches beyond measure, and every time you choose to walk through that door and explore the territory, you add another gem to your growing collection. And you just keep feeling better about yourself and more hopeful about your future and more loving toward others. Very inspirational indeed!
Thanks so much for dropping by and taking the time to comment. I’m glad you found my blog too!
cosmos is dream of divinity and dreams connects body,mind,
soul and spirit. wonderful insights……
as humans do not remember their childhood from
birth till three to four years of age and a
child remains in the union of right and left
brain, the state of now or present forming mirror
to zero, till this union last (no line on water ,
water is neutral and zero calorie )
no memory ,pure blissfulness,happiness,
what many refer as god, and many as no
god,no self, nirvana, sunyata,………..
as we grow in age ,shift occurs from zero
awareness to soul awareness to mind
awareness and to body awareness in a fluid manner
gap widens between right and
left brain and journey into the world mind,
material and memories of joy and sorrow and
gradual loss of happiness ,that invaluable
taste of zero, which we want to replenish with values
of the material world without understanding the
nature of zero
( in our sleep this cycle get reversed everyday
by beta,alpha, theta,and delta brain waves
last resulting into zero awareness sleep }
that is sleep is so wonderful,
I’m delighted you stopped by. It sounds to me like the spiritual traditions of East and West are meeting in this discussion! Are you by any chance Hindu?
What you call a shift that occurs “from zero awareness to soul awareness to mind awareness…” I call the emergence and development of ego from the original unconscious Oneness. And I love your observation that “dreams connect body, mind, soul, and spirit, ” a beautiful way of saying that our egos merge with the Self (your zero) in dreams. This would explain why working on our dreams expands ego-consciousness until we eventually return to our original state of bliss and happiness, but with one difference: the second time around we know it for what it is!! What a beautiful example of the perennial truths underlying all religions!
Thank you for your wonderful insights, and please come back.