Have you ever had a lucid dream? There are many people who make lucid dreaming a practice. I have only experience one lucid dream in my life and it happened spontaneously. I have yet to be able to make it happen.
What is Lucid Dreaming?
Lucid dreaming is the ability to consciously observe and/or control your dreams.
Lucid dreaming is your chance to play around with the extraordinary abilities buried in unused parts of your brain. Regardless of whether your are superhuman in real life or not, lucid dreaming is a way for you to put the deepest areas of your brain to good use while you’re sleeping. It is a place to practice new skills and take control of what is happening and change it. You can be a Jane Doe while awake and superman while sleeping. All the obstacles of reality can be set aside, and you can take trips to exotic places and other worlds an test your skills on your worst enemies and win!
Lucid dreaming transforms your inner dream world into a living alternate reality – where everything you see, hear, feel, taste and even smell is as authentic as real life. Lucidity occurs during altered states of consciousness when you realize you are dreaming and your brain switches into waking mode inside the dream. In normal dreams, your self awareness is shut down and you are more of an observer. That’s why things often feel fuzzy and distant. But when lucid, the conscious brain wakes up during sleep.
This is a safe and natural state. In lucid dreams, you are always asleep in bed and if you want to, you can wake yourself up. Many people practice for years before being able to have one. There are techniques that you can use to make it happen. I won’t go into them in this blog but what I do want to do is share a lucid dream that I had, which you. I also want to share what I learned from it.
MY LUCID DREAM
This is my one and only personal experience with lucid dreaming. What I find interesting is that it was such an archetypal dream. I began to practice incubating dreams as a step toward learning how to lucid dream and wasn’t having much success. I had worked with my dreams for about a week and hadn’t practiced for a few days when this dream occurred. It is very detail and a bit x-rated but very profound. In the dream an unconscious belief is revealed to me. It is a belief carried by many women at an unconscious level.
I found myself in a house that I had been in before, which at one time was my house. It was a house that was attached to the original house. It needed work and I remember seeing moss growing on the outside. In this abandoned part of my house was a kitchen with a fireplace and tile floor. I went into it and noticed that someone was fixing it up. I hadn’t asked him to do it so I was questioning the man doing the work. A woman came in and started moving me away from the man doing the repair work, obviously trying to distract me.
She took me into a bar where there were attractive men sitting in the bar with their young boys. They all began to flirt with me, telling me I was beautiful and kissing me. One of them grabbed my hand and when I pulled it away there was something that dried very quickly. I put my hand to my face to smell it and it smelled like shit. I pulled on the edge of it and it cracked like crystal and a tiny poison needle that was in there, went into my hand.
I immediately started feeling woozy and began to run down a long corridor and up a staircase to get away. I go more dizzy and felt like I was going to pass out. I ran past what looked like a crime scene where three male bodies lay side by side. Laying near their heads each had a poison needle like the one that was stuck in my hand. They had evidence labels on them. It was at this point that I realized it was a poison needle.
A man I had seen earlier in the dream began to chase me and because I was so weak he caught me and held my body close to his. I could feel him becoming aroused and when he realized I knew he began to laugh. I tore myself free and began to run knowing that I was about to get raped and I was also going to die. The man zipped open his pants and a giant penis came out and sprayed me as he laughed madly. He was laughing because he knew he could do whatever he wanted to do because I was poisoned and about to die.
Suddenly I realized it was a dream! I turned and looked at him and shouted, “I am dreaming at the moment and you can’t hurt me because I dreamed you up!” I started to laugh and jump up and down. He fell on the floor and I walked away. I remember thinking there was not much time before I woke up so I walked through the dream changing things as I went along. I decided that the space that the man had been repairing would be my new healing space.
Things started going by very quickly as I got closer to waking up and I remember telling everyone that I encountered that it was only a dream and I had created it. The very last thing I saw was a woman holding a book and I thought she was going to show me a picture of a hummingbird, which she did and I woke up!”
According to Jungian Theory, archetypes are “collective universal patterns or motifs which come from the collective unconscious and are the basic content of religions, mythologies, legends and fairy tales”. They emerge in individuals through dreams, visions and their effects appear in consciousness as images and ideas.
The archetypal theme of this dream is rape. You see the rape theme in fairy tales and myths a lot and in the modern age on television, especially on crime shows. We all know the myths about the rape of Persephone and Medusa. The theme of rape is evoked in movies like “The Color Purple” for example. Rape is often a consequences of war even today and a show of power by men who go in and rape entire villages during war. This has been going on since war began.
Even though it is becoming more common for women and men to report being raped, women are still afraid to report for fear of suffering more consequences from their assailant or from the system. We have come a long way but even now this subject is uncomfortable to deal with.
WHAT IS THIS DREAM ABOUT?
As I lay in bed stunned at the dream it unraveled before my eyes like a giant ball of string. As I was retyping this for this blog the different symbolism was really clear and profound.
It is significant that this is an archetypal dream of unconscious pattern carried by most women. Women have been programmed to fear men. This goes back to when we lived in caves and men were dragging us around by our hair. If they really did that! We are taught to believe that if we encounter a man alone something bad might happen especially if it is dark. Because of the archetypal pattern of rape, it is one of the first things we think about. There is always a power and strength differential at play. I imagine that men have a counter program that they were taught that dovetails perfectly with this one to re-enforce it.
When themes are played out in movies, through fairy tales and in subtle programming they become a part of our psyche without us even knowing it.
It is very clear from this dream that I was carrying this archetype. This core belief is so deep that even someone who has done years of self-exploration can still carry remnants of it. Fearing men plays out differently for each woman depending on their past experience. It can wear the face of the victim, it can look like anger, and mistrust, defensiveness or it can look like co-dependency and self-sacrifice. For me it presented as a distancing, a strong desire to take care of myself, fierce independence and general caution around men, particularly if I was attracted to them.
The demon I confronted in the dream was the belief that I was vulnerable and men could hurt me and do what they wanted to me because I was a woman. Lying in bed recalling the dream brought memories flashing into my mind that I hadn’t thought about in years. I remember as a teenager my parents told me to be careful around men. My father told me that all men wanted from women was sex and they would manipulate to get it. When ever I came home past curfew my parents met me at the door, when they knew I was out with a guy, and asked me where I was and what I had been doing in an accusatory fashion, insinuating that I was out having sex. When I told them we had been talking and lost track of time, which was the truth, the didn’t believe me. These behaviors are where our early programming comes from.
The media on television and in the movies reinforce the belief that men are only interested in sex and would only hurt women. Even today those themes still play out. Women were portrayed as “the weaker sex” who needed men to take care of them. I went to a Catholic High School and I remember freshmen year during sex education this was the message we got regarding dating; bring a phone book with you when you go on a date so if you sat on the guys lap he wouldn’t get aroused. Never wear patent leather shoes because men will look up your dress in the reflection from your shoes. Never put a white table cloth on the dinner table because men will think of sheets and want to take you to bed. I am not kidding here folks! We heard this stuff. This kind of garbage goes into the psyche of an impressionable teenager as another level of programming.
The symbolism in the dream is deep and multi-layered. Someone was working on my house without my permission. The house in a dream represents your body so the man in the dream was doing something to my body without my permission. Possibly a reference to rape. A woman came in and distracted me so I wouldn’t notice. This is interesting because women have been distracting each other for years through ‘cat’ fighting, stealing boyfriends, and putting the focus on other things. These distractions keep us from seeing what is really going on and many of us have bought into the social programming that dictates who we are, how we dress, the way we wear make-up and fix our hair.
My parents suggestion to me that men only want sex and will manipulate to get it and hurt me, played out in the bar scene where the men were flirting with me so that one of them could put the poison needle in my had that would leave me vulnerable.
The stuff that was put in my head to poison me was the perfect metaphor. It smelled like shit because it was bullshit and it crystallized in my hand just like the programming had crystallized in my psyche. Without knowing it I and many other women have been poisoned over and over by the needle of unconscious programming. This kind of programming is difficult to discover and the dream was revealing it to me.
The most profound part of this dream is what happens when I realize that I am dreaming. It happened in a split second right before I was going to fall to the ground dead. I was elated to discover that I was dreaming and that I could change every thing that had happened because I had created it. I turned to my dream assailant and took away his power and thus dismantled the unconscious program. From there I moved through the dream, consciously, as I changed things that weren’t serving me and made it know to my psyche that I was conscious of what was going on and things had changed.
Because this was a lucid dream, to my unconscious mind, I was in charge and what I was changing in the dream was changing in my psyche!
The dream ended with me seeing a hummingbird which is not only a symbol of healing for me but is also a symbol of doing the impossible. I know I could spend even more time dismantling this dream and learn even more but I wanted you to see how powerful a lucid dream can be. The other important thing to remember is that this dream means one thing to me but might mean something else to another dreamer. You might see other things that have meaning for you as your read it.
Gender stereotypes and Sexual Archetypes
To have a dream consultation with Katelyn contact her at www.empoweredhealthandwellness.com