Dream Symbols of the Beloved: Part II


Your response to my last post was so overwhelming that I’m going to save the one about how to work with your dreams for next time and continue with the current theme. I’ve just arrived at my soul’s home in the mountains of North Carolina where I will spend the remainder of the summer. I’ve often wondered why I love this place so dearly, why it makes me feel so loved and connected and alive and grateful for my life. My answer came last night and this morning as I read your comments and did a bit more research.
I’m at my desk looking out an east-facing window. The morning sun enters my backyard late because it has to rise above the mountain before its rays filter down through a thick tree canopy. Most of what I see is in shade but a patch of sun has highlighted the brilliant silver threads of a spider web between two branches of a buckeye tree. Grandmother Spider is busily checking connections, tightening threads, and hunting for tasty morsels that got trapped during the night.
This morning I opened Aion, Volume 9, ii, of Jung’s Collected Works, to re-read his section on symbols of the Self. In paragraph #356 he writes about animal symbolism. He says, “The commonest of these images in modern dreams are, in my experience, the elephant, horse, bull, bear, white and black birds, fishes, and snakes. Occasionally one comes across tortoises, snails, spiders, and beetles. The principal plant symbols are the flower and the tree. Of all the inorganic products, the commonest are the mountain and lake.” Spiders. Mountains. Trees.
When I entered the gravel road last night my arrival was heralded by a cawing black crow who flapped off toward the house. The first thing I did was feed the rainbow trout in our pond. Black birds. Fish. Lake. (Do you think a pond counts?) Then I walked around the garden to check out the flowers. My treasured peonies are already spent, but the pink New Dawn roses and purple clematis are a-riot on the trellis, the hydrangeas look like giant blue and white powder puffs, the hostas are sending up tall bud-laden spikes, the astilbe have myriad pointed white cotton candy tufts, the golden daylilies are in full bloom, and there’s a huge mound of pink petunias by the kitchen door. I don’t garden in Florida. It’s just too hot. But here I can have my flowers. Flowers.
Below Bear Pond and Shadow Brook there’s a small pasture and stable where my horse, Shadow, used to spend his summers. I’ve always had a thing for horses. And Shadow, well, he’s a subject for another post. Horses. By the way, bears are the theme of this mountain home.  They’re all over the house.  But that’s another story too. Bears.
Speaking of bears, every summer for ten years I’ve come here with my sweet friend, a handsome golden retriever whose name was Bear. He passed on last August, but his ashes are in a white box with a label that says “Bear Raffa:  Forever Faithful” in the cabinet four feet to the right of where I sit. I cried when I entered the house without him last night. But this morning when I was still in that borderland between sleeping and waking, I heard his joyous bark. Twice. He’s glad I’m back. I’m glad I’m back.
Do I need any further reminders from the Beloved of how loved I am and why I love this place so? Not really, but such is the nature of the Self that I’ll probably continue to get them every day anyway. And night, too. Sweet dreams of the Beloved, my friends.

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0 Responses

  1. Sweet ,Sweet Jeanie,
    Your words cut to the very heart of my being! Thank you for ALWAYS sharing so much of your precious SELF. Thank you for taking the time to record each detail for rereading and savoring. Your life has so much meaning: Your sharing of it so much potential.
    I can hardly wait to see in person all you have discribed. Enjoy your retreat and keep writing, writing, writing.

    1. Dear Helen Hay, Your response fills me with so much pleasure. In fact, I thought of you when I wrote this post. I thought, I’ll show Helen and her friends the very buckeye tree where I saw the spider web. I thought, they’ll see Bear Pond, Shadow Brook, the stable, the pasture. Knowing you would read and appreciate this made communicating the truths of my soul so much more meaningful. And safe. I thought, someone cares, someone understands. Thank you. I shall keep writing. Jeanie

  2. Jeanie – I, too, love those southern Appalachian mountains, bursting with life all year long! Enjoy and savor your summer.

    1. Hi Susan, Yes, I’m not sure why, but life seems so much more….apparent here than in Orlando! I feel it more. I remember the miracle of it more. I savor it more. Maybe that’s just the nature of a place where the soul feels at home. For whatever reason. I don’t know. It’s a mystery. Simple as that. Yet, how easy to forget what the soul needs and where it feels at home when one is immersed in the hustle and bustle of city life. And how sad that we keep doing that to ourselves without knowing how to make it better. We deserve more. Thank you for your comment. I shall do my best to enjoy and savor my summer. I wish the same to you. Love, Jeanie

  3. Jeanie,
    What a beautiful picture of your beloved place in the mountains of North Carolina. After I had just opened your post, my friend called and wanted to sing the song to me that she uses in ritual to open her group-sharing with women. I listened as she sang and suddenly realized she was singing about Grandmother weaving her Web of creation, and I became mindful of your lovely Spider and dew-laden web in the picture on this blog post right before my eyes!
    It sounds as if you are in the perfect place right now for work on the theme of the Beloved, surrounded by all the things that bring you lovingly back to Self.
    Much love,

    1. Oh, dear Jenna, You are one of the rare ones who is in tune with the soul’s needs and understands how the Self constantly strives to satisfy them. May we all awaken as you have to the awareness of the Beloved’s desire to show us how much we are loved. Thank you for your thoughtful response. It means very much to me. Love, Jeanie

  4. What a beautiful picture you have painted of your wonderful mountain home and faithful friend, Bear. You didn’t mention the hummingbirds! Hope they have found their way back to you. xxxBetsy

    1. Dearest Betsy, I haven’t forgotten your hummingbirds, but I’m feeling very guilty right now because I haven’t put out their nectar yet. (For the rest of you, Betsy was visited by several hummingbirds here a couple summers ago in a magnificent and personally meaningful display of the Beloved’s love for her.) I shall go into town tomorrow and buy more, and think of you as I fill the feeders and sit in the rocking chair on the porch with a glass of wine in hand awaiting their arrival. If they are disappointed that you aren’t there, I shall tell them to come back another time. You’ll be here before long. Much love, sister, Jeanie

  5. divine jeanraffa……
    to be with nature is to be with yourself,
    to be with yourself is to be with oneself,
    to be with oneself is to be with myself.
    zero +zero=zero
    Zero -zero=zero
    once zero always zero…………….
    be zero this summer and in time and beyond time……..
    cosmic web belongs to you……
    happy dreaming…………
    life is a rare opportunity for ray to know Sun.

    1. Dear RamOsinghal, Your way of seeing the sacred geometry in everything is delightful. How do you do that? I feel your love and affirmation, and would like to know more about you. Could you give us more information about your mysterious Self here? We would enjoy it so. Meanwhile, I agree wholeheartedly that to be with nature is to be with yourself. Maybe that’s why I feel so much myself here. It’s all about nature and wilderness and there’s very little to remind me of “civilization.” Thank you for your always fascinating comments. Jeanie

  6. divine………Name has no meaning and meaning has no name ,knowing meaning you can dance with
    different names, different roles, different films but on screen comes the original either at the start of the film or at end of the film that is mostly the case ,you are blessed one divine that it appeared at the start of the film…….enjoy your roles ……and names……
    bless you….dear jeanraffa…..

    1. Dear RamOsinghal, I hear the blessing and love the poetry. Your comment that “knowing meaning you can dance with different names, different roles, different films,” feels like profound truth to me. What I hear you saying is that if you dance with what is profoundly meaningful, then the way you appear to others might appear contradictory, but it’s nonetheless true for you, and that’s all that matters because your truth is where the Beloved dwells. We may wear different masks and play different roles for the sake of social convention, but aligning our souls at all times with the underlying truth far greater than ourselves is what’s truly important. I agree totally. If I understand you, you are saying that I am blessed that the original me appeared at the start of the film, i.e, the story of my individual life. I think you may be correct, although it has taken me a lifetime to understand that the me I was as a child was the real me, and that the me I became thereafter was a necessary adjustment to a conventional perception of reality that did not fit the real me. The true journey was coming back to me. I am doing my best to follow your advice and enjoy my many roles and names. I am intrigued by your use of film metaphor. Are you a screenwriter or film maker? Much love and many blessings, Jeanie

  7. A child is walking in the garden holding one finger of mother, happy enjoying the breeze, inquires suddenly , why I like holding your hand ?. Mom answers as we transfer the data in the computer as this is data transfer of love between us . Child inquires again,this breeze is touching us , what is that?
    Mom answers that is the data transfer of love between you and cosmic intelligence.
    Child inquires again , what is the cosmic intelligence ?
    Mom answers , breath is a union between you and cosmic intelligence , now go and play,let me watch you both together.
    divine ………one ray telling other ray about the Sun……
    on stage one is sunlight and other is moon light
    children like moon light to dance and look beyond
    in cosmic web to feel it is their mom’ work……….
    so it belongs to us. silence is the language of cosmic intelligence and we are communicating in silence expressed in words……………….knowing one you know everyone ,like knowing 26 alphabets one can express without an end……….by chance i create this blog thanks to my grand daughter”kashvi ” 5 years now……..more about some other time………………

  8. Dear RamOsinghal,
    Your words take me beyond myself —“breath is a union between you and cosmic intelligence,” “knowing one you know everyone,” — to see the unity in multiplicity. I love that, yet I also love connecting with the individual. I can be friends with my dog, but must enjoy the beauty of bear from afar. It is the infinite variations of life that contribute to the One Life that I find so fascinating. Who said, “God is in the details?”
    Blessings, Jeanie

  9. Jeanie,
    Yes, we are so blessed to have had the joy and love our four legged friends gave us for so many years. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason……everything has a meaning. Add to that, the wonderful moments we are fortunate to experience in the mountains with their breathtaking, yet magical effects. Isn’t life grand!
    Enjoy your summer,

    1. Dear Fern,
      I agree. There is meaning everywhere, but we often miss it because we are too busy to notice and reflect on it. Life is indeed grand, and especially so when we get to go to our special place and have the time and space to enjoy it. I hope you’ll have a chance to do that this summer. Have a wonderful one.
      Blessings, Jeanie

  10. Hi Jeanie,
    I’m pretty sure you know about this event if you are interested, but thought I would send you the information that the IASD Annual Conference is going to be held at the Crown Plaza Resort in Ashville, North Carolina….June 27-July 1. The theme is “Bringing Dreams and Community Together.”
    Also, I found the Theme interesting in light of our discussion about your blog entry last night.
    “There is an energy in the Western North Carolina mountains. It’s an ancient energy – these are the oldest mountains in the world. It’s a creative energy – this area is rich in arts and crafts. It’s a uniting energy – where Scottish settlers lived alongside neighboring Cherokee tribes. It’s an energy that inspires fresh insight. In 2010, dreamers from all over the world will gather together in these mountains, uniting the creative energies of our dream community with the ancient energies of the mountains. Join us as we bring dreams to the community and community to the dream.”
    Happy Dreaming ~

    1. Thanks, Jenna. I did know about the dream conference; I’ve been a member of the IASD for a long time. It’s a fabulous organization and I’m a huge fan. Unfortunately, I’m unable to go this year because I’ll be staying with three of my grandchildren while their parents take an anniversary trip. But yes, there is an unusual energy here, and that might be part of what I feel. I’ve also heard that the many waterfalls release a certain kind of energy too. I don’t know anything about that, but I do know how I feel here, and it’s very good! Love, Jeanie

  11. I am so enjoying reading your blogs. They are moving and insightful. Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us.

    1. Good morning, Joan,
      How lovely it is to have your sweet and affirming words be the first thing I read this morning. Thank you for taking the time to write. You’ve already made my day!
      Love, Jeanie

    1. Thank you, Jenna. It’s so sweet of you to bring this site to our attention. I love it that my blog is being used for this kind of networking! Blessings, Jeanie

  12. Oh my, Jenna! These images are exquisite! I have a couple of friends with whale dreams too. Do visit this site, animal lovers! It’s quite extraordinary.

  13. jeanie,
    out here in the inter-mountain high desert of my dreamtime walkabout, it is the wildflowers–after a long wet spring, the sun is blooming nova and the hidden seeds all shoot from the pretending emptiness….
    symbols of secret potential. waiting beauty. dangerous and fragile perfection lurking beneath our dusty feet: what else might be just beyond our ken, about to leap forth into awareness?
    blessings from the four corners,

    1. Dear William, Four corners, four walls, four winds, four seasons, four directions: home of the Beloved. Thank you for the blessing of your beautiful words which never fail to remind me of the surrounding mystery. Your dreamtime feels like real time to me. I’m so grateful for your perspective, Jeanie

  14. divine jean…….happy holy days ….oneness with nature is holy.
    1+1+1+1+1 =5 =ego of numbers…….
    now=0+0=0 0-0=0
    once zero always zero.
    8=0+0=soul+body=left hand +right hand =Namaste
    8=Namaste=hands from horizontal dimension of time becomes
    vertical dimension of eternity=two zero merge vertically
    to form 8=mystery of mirror= vertical remains vertical but horizontal reverses =Indian symbol for yin+yang
    that is why lord krishna birthday is 8=middle of moon cycle.
    p.s.=if a person shift from hand shake to Namaste it will
    reduce lot of stress unknowingly ,test on you and
    hand shake only when necessary …..bless you ….

    1. Dear ramOsinghal, Last night I dreamed of a small woman who came up to me with a shy body language that belied the warm interest in her eyes. Thinking she wanted to greet me, I reached out and shook her tiny hand which hung loosely in mine. It was apparent she didn’t really want to shake hands, but did want to connect somehow. She smiled with gratitude at my attempt, but I felt I had somehow invaded her space. And yes, there was stress in the knowing. Perhaps what she really wanted was a Namaste. I shall try that the next time she appears in a dream. Thank you for your always fascinating insights, Jeanie

  15. Jeanie,
    Your dream of the shy woman reminds me of something I was reading yesterday on my “Save the Manatee Club” website about how swimmers are approaching the shy manatee and disturbing them with such overt gestures of friendliness. It appears that Manatee like to be the ones to initiate contact or they will be frightened off. Perhaps, we have shy underwater/subconscious beings in our psyches that are waiting for us to become very still and receptive before approaching. This idea is relevant to me at this time, as I am feeling the need to make more time for quiet contemplation in my busy life.

    1. Dear Jenna, What a beautiful analogy. I love your insight about the shy subconscious beings in all of us who are waiting for us to become still and receptive to their different ways. It feels very relevant to me too, at this time of transition when my mind is busy with moves and changes. Remembering to quiet the chatter and simply listen really is key to opening and expanding. Thank you for this reminder. Blessings, Jeanie

  16. Jeanie — you are beloved and embraced by your North Carolina environs. The borderland between sleeping and waking reveals much. I’m glad Bear was there.
    Thank you for continually revealing your brave journey of appreciation for the feminine psyche.

  17. Randy,
    Thank you for joining the conversation. I appreciate your comment very much. I’m glad Bear is here too.
    I think that most of what’s really important to our souls exists in that nebulous borderland between sleeping and waking and every other pair of opposites, and that most of what’s unimportant is stuck in the extremes at either pole in which we artificially situate ourselves out of fear or ignorance.
    My hope is that by revealing what I have learned about the feminine half of the Self I can help others transcend the one-sided thinking about what is sacred that has prevented us from discovering what William calls the “secret potential. waiting beauty. dangerous and fragile perfection lurking beneath our dusty feet: …[that] might be just beyond our ken, about to leap forth into awareness.”

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