The Mystery of Dreams

Photo NaturalThoughts By Idea go ID-10020201

Photo by Idea go

Have you ever had a dream you can’t forget? That startles you? That seems so odd or scary it’s hard to decipher?

I’m a Dream Traveler. I not only like to dream up my next story, adventure, trip or project but I love to keep learning! So, I said to myself, why not learn about DREAMS?

Recently, a friend talked me into going to what to me was a very unusual workshop:  “Dream Tending,” led by Stephen Aizenstat. I spent an unforgettable 4-day weekend at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California. It was an amazing experience!

So what exactly is dream tending, you ask? I wasn’t sure myself, but I soon found out it was a practical approach to deciphering the meaning of our dreams. Using Carl Jung’s foundational principles and his 40+ years of psychological study and counseling, Stephen Aizenstat led us all in a step-by-step approach to try to uncover the mysteries of our unconscious.

We’ve all had dreams we can’t forget. We spend days trying to figure them out. We ask ourselves: What is our unconscious trying to say? Stephen Aizenstat says the unconscious is the voice of our soul, trying to penetrate our conscious mind through the dream figures and images we experience. Uncovering their important actions, colors, and moods is also part of solving this mysterious puzzle. “These are real inhabitants of our psychic reality,” he told us. Then he advised us to select one special dream, write it down and then freely draw pictures of it.

From there we began to “work the dream” by watching Stephen unravel the dreams of five different attendees throughout the weekend. In front of an audience of @120 people, they revealed their dream aloud and tried to relate it to details, incidents or people in their lives, prompted by Stephan’s sensitive questions. Some dreamt of white whales or flowers that turned into monsters. Others were on a journey, climbing a mountain or traversing the sea. Others wandered through a forgotten factory or witnessed a strange, enigmatic parade. By the end of Stephen’s session though, each dreamer was enlightened, relieved and even elated by their discoveries.

The dream I chose “to tend” was very odd and, because I dreamt it the first night of that weekend and it actually woke me up, I felt it was a special message from that “Other World” of my mysterious psyche. So, when we first broke into groups, I threw worry to the winds and decided to reveal it to the three other wonderful ladies in my Kiva, (the name Stephen gave to our small groups). Working together, we were told to seek out associations in the dream and in our lives, plus look for ancient story figures (archetypes) as well as animated dream figures who often visit our dreams.


photo by KasSartori

My unusual dream:   I was in a New York subway car alone. Suddenly the car swerved from the underground to a carnival place much like the county fair, and it stopped. Through the windows I could see crowds having fun. Vendors were selling cotton candy and hawking their prizes and teddy bears, asking people to try their hand at different games. I sat inside the subway car though, suddenly realizing I’d sat there for two whole days. Then I leaned over and noticed a hole in the bottom of the subway car’s floor. For some inexplicable reason, I reached down into the hole, which turned out to be a heavy black pipe full of yucky slime. I had to yank my hand to get it out, but then when I looked down at it, the diamonds in my engagement ring as well as the small one in my wedding ring were gone! I was shocked and wished I’d never done it! Continue reading

Switching Paths

Have you ever thrown your “To Do” list away?  Ever hidden it from yourself then decided to take a walk in the woods instead? Ever feel like tossing away your goals for a while, along with social media “shoulds,” so you can do whatever your whims present on any given day?

Okay, I admit it. I’ve been playing hooky from writing, avoiding  my keyboard and my novel manuscript for several weeks. The weather’s been gorgeous here during our southern California summer and I’ve been literally craving other activities besides writing. So I said to myself, “Why not?”

Nonetheless, at the start of each week, the negative voices in my head started condemning my lax ways. But finally last week a very positive “AhHa” moment won out. I realized I’d now shifted into a new mode of being this summer. One much more devoid of “have to’s.” This new path has been a little scary, I’ll admit, and it’s created an edge in me along with some fantastic moments of elation. The edge? Well, in the back of my mind I still want to finish my second novel even though I’ve placed it temporarily on hold. Despite that though, I’ve continued to put planning and “shoulds” aside and decided each day to “see what shows up.”

Guess what? In the last six weeks I didn’t die of boredom or feel frantic about what to do next. I simply started moving toward activities I never seem to have time for, things I’ve wanted to do but really didn’t even know it.

'14AugShimmeringCattailsPhotoAs you can see, I resurrected an old hobby, photography, during my morning walks. It’s enhanced my exercise so much and nourishes my soul at the same time! I have no idea where this will lead, but now I have a load of wonderful images to share with others. Who knows? Maybe I’ll link them with many of my poems and. . .Voila! It might become another book! Continue reading

Savor Decadent Chocolates with Delectable Books!

(Photo by Dan Rizolli &
Mmm, creamy chocolate. . .
We savor the sweet aroma as our mouths begin to water.
Then we indulge in the fun of selecting each savory chocolate to sample.  
 Now, why not combine our decadent treats with some delectable books?
Welcome to my blog post where we link chocolates to favorite books.Thanks Michelle Knowlden, for tagging me on your chocolate blog hop in mid-May!
 White creamy chocolate filled with pecans links best with Michelle Knowlden‘s new mystery, Riddle In Bones. Despite past traumas, the sweltering desert, and a hot French housekeeper, Leslie Green must solve a bone riddle before the killer shoots again. Michelle has published 14 stories in Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine plus two earlier mysteries, so this book should be a page-turner!
 Choose a key-lime chocolate truffle while enjoying Freeways to Flip-Flops, a multi award-winning memoir by Sonia Marsh who says, “After uprooting my three teens from affluent Orange County, California to a hut in Belize, chocolate was the last thing on my mind. Although it gave me comfort during the dark winters in Denmark, where I was born, I never craved blød nougat, my favorite hazelnut chocolate, during our hot Caribbean island adventure.”

Continue reading