MASTER F. J., Homoeopathic Dictionnary of Dreams

 DEDICATION

 This book is dedicated to my daughters Rukshin and Mahaziver who represent my future.

 -FJM

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Preface to second edition

 It is a great honour for me and my colleagues that the first edition published in November’ 94, got completely sold out within a year hence I was forced to publish the second edition. This clearly shows how useful DREAMS would be for practitioners in their private practice and also for students to understand the theme of materia medica.

 There are some major changes in the second edition. Dreams of more than 50 remedies have been included. Lots of new dreams have been added to the already existing remedies. Lots of printing errors have been checked and verified. Also themes of common remedies as understood by the dreams have been added.

 You will also find in the second edition the interpretation of common dreams been re-written, as new ideas, new concepts were formed and evolved. I am grateful to my professional colleagues and publishers for their encouragement.

 I am eternally grateful to my colleague Dr. Amisha Thakkar without whose effort and sincerity this book would have been only dreamt of in my sleep.

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Introduction

 Dreams are one of nature’s miracles, not the result of a wandering mind in sleep. A dream is an interface between the process of life and our conscious personality.

 in an overview of the study and research concerning dreams, there is an evidence that a dream can be

 a. an expression of what is happening in the physical body;

 b. a way of balancing the physiological and psychological activities in us;

 c. an enormously original source of insight and information in us, e.g.  scanning information and forming new ideas;

 d. an expression of human super senses;

 e. a meaning of solving problems, not only in our personal life, but also in relationship and work;

 f. a way of reaching beyond the known world of experience and presenting intimations from the unknown.

 What is offered in this book

 The information about dreams presented in this book has been gathered during 14 years of working and studying dream and dream processes of our patients.

 The first part of the book represents the detailed description of dreams under each remedy with their marks. This helps the homoeopathic physician to have an easy assessment.

 In the entries in the dictionary in the second pat of the book are explanations of many different types of dreams and dream images.

 Despite some peoples’ attempts to explain dreams in one simple formula, dreams cover a huge range of phenomena and human experience.

 The third part of the book deals with the common theme of dreams of certain important remedies, or while understanding the mental picture of the remedy one can easily expect what sort of dreams can be present in the patient.

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Introducing dreams

 Everyone dreams during three or four periods of sleep every night. If we recall our dreams, they may seem to be a meaningless jumble of images, sometimes with a strong emotion attached, or with a coherent, though not always logical, storyline.

 Some people believe that dreams are random thoughts, which our waking mind weaves a story around, while others believe that our unconscious mind is telling itself stories. Dreams have also been considered to be messages from a spiritual source, memories of the past, or prophecies of the future.

 The uncensored nature of dreams has troubled many philosophers, including Plato (c. 428-348 BC) who wrote that “In al of us, even in good men, there is a lawless wild-beast nature, which peers out in sleep.”

 From the dark Ages, hermits who had withdrawn from society to be closer to God seemed particularly troubled by erotic dreams. However, these dreams were often excused as being lewd temptations sent by the Devil, to try to draw the hermit away from God. Another convenient excuse for these erotic dreams was the theory that every dream meant its exact opposite therefore even if a dream was sexual, it could still be enjoyed because it indicated inner purity and a healthy immortal soul.

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Shakespeare’s dreams

 Titania Asleep, is a scene from Shakespeare’s popular play ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.

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Biblical dreams

 Probably the best known Biblical dream is the Egyptian Pharaoh dreaming of “seven well-favoured kine (cattle) and fatfleshed”, followed by seven more, “ill-favoured and leanfleshed”, which eat the first seven. Pharaoh then dreams of seven good ears of corn being devoured by “seven thin ears blasted with the east wind.”

 Joseph’s interpretation of these dreams is, “Behold, there come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt, and there shall arise after them seven years of famine.” After hearing this interpretation, Pharaoh puts Joseph in charge of stockpiling corn, and Egypt survives the years of famine. (Genesis 41:1-32).

 The Bible also contains dreams that teach and instruct - God shows Peter a vision of a large vessel, like “a great sheet knit at the four corners….wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things and fowls of the air.” A voice tells Peter to kill and eat, but he refuses, saying, “I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” The voice then tells him, “What God has cleansed, that call not the common.” (Acts 10:10-17).

 This dream is to instruct Peter that he must preach to the gentiles as well as to the Jews.

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A wise request

 Solomon’s Dream, shows Solomon asking God for wisdom - “an understanding heart to judge the people, that I may discern between good and bad.”

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Pharaoh’s dreams

 These dreams were prophetic, warning of a future calamity that could be avoided if the dreams were interpreted correctly, and if the interpretation was acted upon.

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Visions and visionaries

 From the age of 13, the French peasant Joan of Arc saw visions of saints. She also heard voices telling her to go and severe the Dauphin, and expel the English from France. Joan of Arc convinced the Dauphin of her divine mission, and dressed in white armour, led her troops in capturing Orleans. Charles VII was then crowned King of France in 1429. Joan of Arc was burned at the stake in Rouen in 1431 as a heretic, but was canonised in 1920.

 Most religious visions are of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The best-known religious visions were to the 14-year-old Bernadette soubrious at Lourdes in 1858, and to three children near Fatima in Portugal in 1917. At the last two sightings at Fatima, some 30,000 and 70,000 people saw a strange, moving light in the sky. Whether this was a vision or wish-fulfilment can never be proved.

 A vision can often have lasting and powerful consequences. In 1823, Joseph smith, a 17-year-old American farm-hand, had a vision of an angel called Moroni, who informed him that a set of gold plates was buried in a nearby hillside. Miraculously, Joseph Smith found and dug up these plates, translated their inscriptions with divine assistance, and the resulting Mormon church has over six million members world-wide.

 Visions are not always religious, however, and many people have claimed to receive visitations from the spirits of close friends or relatives at the exact moment of their death.

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Love fever

 On the ninth day of a feverish illness, the Italian poet Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) dreamt of angels leading him to his dead beloved, Beatrice.

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A saintly sleep

 Joan of Arc Asleep. Joan of Arc claimed to see visions of saints, and to hear voices summoning her to a divine mission. The success of this mission changed the course of French history.

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Sigmund freud

 After training in neurology, Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) began to practice what later became psychoanalysis. Initially, following his colleague Josef Breuer (1842-1925), he used hypnosis to treat cases of hysteria. He then replaced hypnosis with the technique of free association, and began to explore his patients’ dreams for clues to their problems.

 Freud believed that dreams were wish-fulfilment - in our dreams we represent our deepest desires which, in an adult, are nearly always sexual. However, because these desires would be offensive to our sleeping conscious minds, our censor, or superego, disguises our true intentions. The obscurity of dreams, Freud said, “is due to alternations in repressed material made by the censorship”. However, this theory does not explain why we might have a heavily disguised dream one night, and a straightforward dream of the same activity on another night.

 there are many problems with Freud’s ideas, but he must be given credit for being one of the first modern thinkers to re-examine the symbolism of dreams. However, he must also be criticised for seeing nearly every dream symbol in purely sexual terms.

 Freud’s detractors also complain that his theories, based on evidence drawn from his psychologically disturbed patients, were not universally applicable. Despite these criticisms, Freud created psychoanalysis almost single-handedly, and built a solid base for later dream analysts to expand.

Superego censor

 Sigmund Freud codified and popularised several existing ideas of dream interpretation, but the theory of our superego censor repressing or disguising the desires of our subconscious mind, appears to be original to him.

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Dream couch

 Freud’s patients lay on this couch while relating their dreams to him. Freud sat behind them, in order not to disturb their concentration.

Carl jung

 Carl Jung (1875-1961) began as a follower of Freud’s theories, but broke away in 1913 to pursue his own path. Jung believed that the content of a dream was meaningful - “Dreams may give expression to ineluctable truths, to philosophical pronouncements, illusions, wild fantasies….and heaven knows what besides.” His theory of the collective unconscious” stated that although the symbolism of our dreams is personal, it is often grounded in the universal.

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 After exploring the religions and folklore of other cultures, Jung discovered that they shard many symbols, and that these universal symbols frequently occur in our dreams. It is as if we all use the same building blocks in the creation of our dreams.

 Jung also believed in the persona - the image of our personality which we project to the outside world - and in the shadow - those parts of our personality which are kept hidden. It is the shadow that can surface in our dreams, often as other characters, who might be aspects of ourselves. Related to this belief is his concept of the anima and the animus. Sometimes our anima or animus appears in our dreams as a powerful archetype, whose purpose is to teach us that which our conscious, waking self refuses to recognise or acknowledge.

A curious subject

 Jung’s curiosity led him to study many subjects - although best known as a psychologist, he produced works on symbolism, alchemy and even flying saucers.

Creative dreaming

 For centuries, creative artists have used the ideas that have come from their dreams to fuel their work. One afternoon, the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) fell asleep while thinking about the court of Kubla Khan. When he woke from his dream, he found he had two or three hundred lines of a poem in his head, and started to write them down.

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 After only 54 lines he was interrupted by “a person on business from Porlock”, and by the time he returned to his desk, the rest of the poem Kubla Khan had vanished from his mind.

 After discussing supernatural stories with Percy Bysshe Sheeley, Lord Byron, and Byron’s doctor, Mary Shelly (1797-1851) went to bed and had a powerful dream. The following day she began writing Frankenstein: or, The modern Prometheus, based on the previous night’s dream.

 Scientists have also been inspired by their dreams. The German chemist Friedrich Kekule (1829-96) visualised the molecular structure of benzene as a carbon ring after dreaming of a row of carbon and hydrogen atoms closing in a ring, like a snake swallowing its tail.

Lucid dreaming

 Although it may seem unlikely, it is possible to control your dreams. First, you should decide where you want your dream to take place. Next, you should decide on an awareness signal- something to remind your dreaming self that this is a dream. A common signal is to look at your hand in the dream. Having previously agreed with yourself that this should be the signal, when you find yourself looking at your hand it is likely that you will realise you are dreaming.

 As you fall asleep, try to picture the place in your mind, as clearly as possible. If you “arrive” there in your dream, then you have already exerted some control over the dream. Looking at your hand, you should then remember that this is a dream, and not reality. In your dream turn your hand around and examine it. This is a conscious act, and if you can do this, you might be able to choose where to go, who to meet, and what to do and say in your dream.

 Experienced lucid dreamers might agree beforehand with others that they will meet in a certain place, and in their dreams they meet and talk. Some claim that when they compare notes the next day, they all dreamed of the same place, the same people, and the same conversation.

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Dream control

 Your mind is a storehouse of images and imaginary events. If you can decide what to think about when you are awake, it would seem logical for you to have the same control when you are asleep.

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Unconscious art.

 The Spanish surrealist Salvador Dali (1904-89) claimed that his work could only be appreciated by the unconscious. He used photographic clarity to depict contorted landscapes and figures that seem both nightmarish and disconcertingly familiar.

Precognitive dreams

 Dreaming of an old friend the night before they contact you is fairly common. However, it is difficult to know if you foretold that they would contact you, or whether they “picked up” your dream. The two events could have been convicted, or purely coincidental.

 Many people claim they dreamed that the United States President John F. Kennedy was shot, before it happened - but unfortunately there is no evidence of anyone writing down their dream before the assassination occurred. Of the millions of dreams that were dreamt by Americans during the weeks before 22 November 1963, many will have featured an expensive car, hundreds will have featured the president, and some will undoubtedly have shown his violent death. How many of these were genuine precognitive dreams is impossible to know.

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 Many people dream of a disaster, such as a plane crash, and change a flight they have already booked to another date. If the disaster occurs, they naturally believe they were saved by their precognitive dream. But why only this one person should be saved by their dream is a common question, and it is probable that people often have these dreams and then in reality nothing happens.

 Some people to have a good track record of seeing future in their dreams, keep careful written notes. If you have a particularly powerful or disturbing dream, write it down, date it, and give a sealed copy of it to someone else. Remember to do this before the dream comes true, not afterwards.

Divine dreams

 The philosopher St. Thomas Aquinas (1224-74) distinguished between divine revelations and “unlawful and Superstitious” dreams. He wrote, “It is the experience of all men that a dream contains some indication of the future. Therefore it is vain to deny that dreams have efficacy in divination.

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A death foretold

 Years after the event, a friend of Abraham Lincoln claimed that Lincoln dreamt he saw a body lying in state in the White House. In his dream, Lincoln asked who was dead. “The president, killed by an assassin,” he was reputedly told.

Interpreting dream symbolism

 Sometimes dreams are simply a return of your life, but they usually contain their own story, combined with vivid imagery. The 2nd-century roman soothsayer Artermidorus wrote that “dreams and visions are infused into men for their advantage and instruction”, but also gave a warning - “the same dream does not always have the same meaning in each case and for each person”.

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 Sigmund Freud described a number of fairly clear sexual symbols which often occur in people’s dreams, and Carl Jung showed that there are many dream symbols that seem to be common to all humankind. However, you should never assume that these universal symbols apply to your individual dreams. It is always important to work out your own personal symbolism.

 Although dreams are mainly visual, they often base their images on word play, proverbs, common sayings, and metaphors. Naturally, these will all vary according to your native language.

 It should also be remembered that the meanings of symbols can change, especially in the contemporary age of rapid visual communication. Any “general” symbolic meaning might alter because of a popular film, television series, or the fame of an international icon. For example, the word “Madonna” can now just as easily refer to Virgin Mary, or to an American pop star. Also, the swastika was once considered to be a symbol of good fortune, but now it usually means extreme right-wing politics and racial hatred.

What your dreams can reveal

Sibilant symbol

 Many snakes are poisonous, but when twined around a staff, a snake symbolises healing. They represent wisdom, as well as temptation, partly because of the Garden of Eden story. They can also represent sexuality, and a snake curled with its tail in its mouth is a symbol of eternity and reincarnation.

 Some dreams are wish-fulfilment, but you may also dream of things that you do not want. What you want and what you need are not always the same - your unconscious may be pointing out something that you need to do, even if it is not what you consciously want to do. For example, in waking life you might be pursuing a feud with someone, but your dreams may tell you that co-operation and reconciliation will be more useful. Listen to your dreams, because they are often wiser than your waking mind.

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 Everyone has insecurities, and in waking life, it is natural to overcompensate, or try to hide them. Your dreams, however, reveal your hidden insecurities as a matter of course. Do not dismiss Freudian symbolism altogether - many dreams are about sex, which is at the root of numerous insecurities. For example, for a man, dreaming of a broken pencil or a demolished chimney could well be a reference to a fear of impotence.

 Recurrent dreams tend to occur because of very deeply rooted fears and insecurities. If you have a recurring dream, examine it carefully each time. Work out what it is trying to tell you, whether it is getting you better or worse, and what you can do in your waking life in response to this recurring dream.

 When you wake from a dream, get into the habit of writing it down immediately. Write down your feelings and depressions, too, and note unusual colours, specific numbers, or any names. These are all important when interpreting your dreams.

Falling dream

 Dreaming of falling often reveals insecurity. It could also refer to falling in love, or into temptation. In your dream, are you falling from grace, denoting a spiritual problem, or from a position of power? Try to remember where you are falling from, and where and how you land.

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Sibilant symbol

 Many snakes are poisonous, but when twined around a staff, a snake symbolises healing. They represent wisdom, as well as temptation, partly because of the Garden of Eden story. They can also represent sexuality, and a snake curled with its tail in its mouth is a symbol of eternity and reincarnation.

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Colours

 COLOUR MIGHT PREDOMINATE IN A DREAM, OR A SYMBOL COULD BE AN UNUSUAL COLOUR - FOR EXAMPLE, A DOG MAY BE PURPLE. THE SYMBOLISM OF COLOURS IS LINKED TO RELIGION, AND CAN HAVE DIFFERENT CULTURAL MEANINGS. HOWEVER, CERTAIN COLOURS TEND TO HAVE SPECIFIC MEANINGS.

Gold

 This masculine colour represents richness and royalty, particularly kingship. Gold is the brightness of the sun, and represents the majesty of God. It can also mean wealth, money, and by extension, covetousness.

Silver

 The symbol of purity and chastity, silver is the colour of the Moon. It therefore represents mystical and feminine spirituality and wisdom, and the qualities of a queen. Silver may also refer to money.

Red

 The most sexual to the colours, red is hot, masculine, and aggressive. It can mean stop, and represents blood, danger, and vibrant life. It is a royal colour in a religious sense - Christ’s blood, and a cardinal’s robes, are red.

White

 In the East, white is the colour of death. In the West, a bride wears whit to symbolise virginity, and white represents cleanness, purity, virtue, and goodness.

Purple

 In ancient Rome, “taking the purple” meant becoming a Roman senator, and purple was the imperial colour. It is the colour of royalty, ruling, and bishops’ vestments.

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Orange

 This is a bright, lively colour, denoting spirituality in some religions (for example, Krishna followers wear saffron robes). Orange is also a colour of health.

Green

 This colour means go, natural goodness, a fresh start, and growth. However, green can also symbolise poison, jealousy, and inexperience.

Black

 In the West, black signified death. It can also mean secrecy, fear, depression, emptiness, and the unconscious mind. It is the absence of all light, and therefore the absence of God. An evil person’s soul is said to be black.

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Brown

 The colour brown should always be pt in its context - it can be the goodness and richness of soil, but also the murkiness of mud. Brown is associated with the sensation of touch, and with the material world.

Yellow

 This can be a symbol of health (the brightness  of the sun), or ill-health (illness such as jaundice). In many cultures, yellow is the colour of cowardice.

Blue

 This is a feminine colour. It is the colour of the sky and heaven. It symbolises spirituality, purity, fidelity, clarity of thought and the cool clearness of intellect and intuition. Dark blue and blue-green suggest the sea, and therefore emotions.

Archetypes

 There are many archetypal figures, known by many names and categorised in different ways, according to whether they are being described by, for example, a Freudian or a Jungian. A person in a dream could be both a real person and an archetypal figure; for example, if you dream that a friend is a priest or the Pope, the dream could be telling you to go to that friend for spiritual guidance. Many of the archetypes represented in the Major Arcana of the tarot can also appear in your dreams.

 Everyone has “masculine” and “feminine” traits. The anima represents “feminine” qualities, such an intuition, in a man. The animus represents “masculine” qualities, such as aggression, in a woman. Any woman in a man’s dream might be his anima, and any man in a woman’s dream might be her animus.

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 The many archetypes include the Stranger or Shadow, Twins, Hero, Fool and Wise Old Man or Woman. Their symbolic meanings can be found in the A to Z of Dream Symbols.

Merlin the magician

 Merlin is an archetypal magician, and Vivian is a Sorceress rather than a High Priestess, but the distinction between these two archetypes is often blurred. Such characters in dreams might suggest that you need to pay more attention to the mystical and esoteric rather than to the conventional and orthodox. However, archetypes may also have a flip side - for example, the Magician can also be the Trickster.

Reflections

 A mirror implies self-examination but what you see may be deceptive or distorted.

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Numbers

 Symbolically, odd numbers are male, and even numbers are female. The meanings of the numbers zero to thirteen are: ZERO: nothingness, a void, and emptiness; ONE: man, loneliness, and ideas of unity and uniqueness; TWO: woman, a pair or an opposite, contract, or choice; THREE: the family creation, and movement, with a beginning, middle, and end; FOUR: solidity, the gospels, seasons, compass points, elements, and functions of the mind - intellect, emotion, sensation, and intuition; FIVE: the human (four limbs plus head), nature, life, the senses, and the occult; SIX: sex - upward and downward triangles superimposed, and the Creation (six days); SEVEN: heaven, a holy number, a day of rest, days of the week, notes of the scale, colours of the rainbow, pillars of wisdom, and wonders of the world; EIGHT: infinity (when the number is turned on its side), material matters, worldly concerns, and the eight-fold path of Buddhism; NINE: pregnancy, Buddhist spirituality, Chinese ultimate spiritual power, and great achievement; TEN: the commandments from the Old Testament, and according to Hinduism, the perfect number; ELEVEN: revelation, intuition, self-knowledge, and a spiritual journey: TWELVE: the passage of time, astrological signs of the zodiac months of the year, and hours of the day; THIRTEEN: often considered to be the unluckiest of all the numbers, particularly in the Western World.

Rooms in a house

 According to the symbolism of dreams, everything in a house is part of you, whether physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually. As with all dream symbols, it is always important to interpret the meanings as they apply to you personally, and in the context of the dream.

 The facade of the house symbolises the aspect of yourself that you present to the world. Walls represent security, or barriers against the outside world. If walls between rooms are too solid, it could mean that you are shutting off parts of yourself from each other. The porch is the place where you meet people and invite them into your life, therefore crossing the threshold is an important image. Open doors suggest an entrance to an aspect of yourself, or if the doors are closed, a barrier.

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 Inside the house, the attic or the top of the house is thought to symbolise the conscious mind, and the intellect. An attic room sometimes contains many discarded but important objects from your life. The basement implies the unconscious mind, and instinct. The bathroom represents cleansing, or purification, and the bedroom symbolises rest, safety, and renewal. The kitchen suggests domesticity, warmth, and perhaps working in partnership. The living room is the heart and centre of you. If someone else is in the living room establish whether they are welcome, or if they are an intruder. Balconies represent female breasts - a longing for the security of babyhood, or a sexual desire in an erotic dream. A hallway and corridors symbolise either the vagina (moving along them can represent sexual intercourse) or your passage along life’s pathways. Stairs can also represent sexual intercourse, as well as your ascent to the higher aspects of life or your descent to the baser aspects.

Room with a view

 Windows represent your view of the world. If the curtains are drawn, perhaps you are shutting yourself in. Closed shutters suggest Over-protection, and a smashed window could signify a fear of intrusion.

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A human building

 This engraving from Tobias Cohn’s Ma’aseh Tobiyyah (Venice, 1721), compares a symbolic representation of a human body with the structure of a building. This is an ancient idea, which can be very illuminating in dream interpretation.

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Animals

 Bees produce honey, which implies nourishment. They represent a group working together, and are a repository of wisdom - it is traditional to tell them news. Dreaming of a spider represents being trapped in its web, or being devoured by a female.

 Cats can be playful, but also wilful. A cat-like person might be elegant, but cannot be trusted because of its claws. The dog is a good companion. It can also be a hunter, and guards the entrance to the Underworld.

 Rats are intelligent and cunning, but are associated with disease. Mice are timid, and could mean that you are pointlessly running in a wheel, or are caught in the trap.

 Cows are placid, provide nourishment, and are a symbol of prosperity. Depending on the type, horses can be sturdy beasts of burden, or fast-moving messengers. They can symbolise controlled strength, or that your life is galloping out of control. The lion is the king of the jungle, and symbolises watchfulness and strength. The wolf is a fierce, strong hunter, and is a metaphor for sexually predatory behaviour. A goat symbolises male sexuality.

 If the goat butts you, your unconscious might be shaking your composure. Sheep suggest docile behaviour, and may imply that you are too easily led. Rabbits can symbolise unchecked sexual behaviour, but are also associated with gentleness. The monkey is a naughty, clever trickster, and could easily signify childish behaviour.

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Porky pig

 A pig might suggest that you are greedy, but it could also refer to the nurturing warmth of the family.

A frog’s kiss

 If kissed, a frog might turn into a prince or princess. Are you hoping that someone will come along and transform your life?

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The wily snooze

 A fox suggests that you should use animal cunning, or that you feel hunted.

Birds

 Many individual birds have their own specific meanings, but remember, as always, to interpret birds in the personal context of your life as well as in the context of your dream.

 A bird with a broken wing might show that you feel your hopes have been rounded. The albatross is a weight around your neck, but also the strength to make an arduous journey. A caged bird is beautiful but trapped, and perhaps there is an aspect of yourself which you tend with care, but which is static in reality. The cockerel is a sexual reference, and loud and proud, it might suggest there is something you wish to announce to the world. A crow is a scavenger, and symbolises death, and the dove is a universal symbol of peace, hope, and faithful love,  the Holy Spirit in Christianity. The eagle represents noble strength and power, but it is also the greatest bird of prey, and perhaps you should beware of a predatory nature in yourself or in other people. The hen represents fussiness and a lack of intelligence - perhaps you are being unnecessarily overprotective.

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 A peacock signified immortality, but its beauty contains a certain flashiness, therefore examine yourself for vanity. The phoenix rises from the ashes, and represents a new start in life, and the pigeon is a messenger. Ravens suggest death, and foreboding, but also prophecy - if they can be trusted. The seagull is associated with the sea, the ocean of your emotions. The vulture symbolises death, but its function is to clear up the putrefying debris after death - perhaps this means that you have to clear out some of the dead areas in your life.

A wise old bird

 An owl is traditionally associated with wisdom. However, it can also represent cunning, duplicity and death.

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A to z of dreams symbols

 THE FOLLOWING PAGES GIVE TRADITIONAL INTERPRETATIONS OF THE MOST COMMON DREAM SYMBOLS, BUT IT IS ALWAYS MOST IMPORTANT TO WORK OUT YOUR OWN PERSONAL SYMBOLISM.

Abandonment

 It is a dream to be considered important when it occurs at any point in an individual’s life. The fear of being abandoned is one of the most fundamental and universal one. This dream is a manifestation of anxiety at the prospect of abandonment. Sufferers feel an exaggerated need to have friends on whom they can count. The desire to be loved far outweighs the need to love. This fear is both fundamental and profoundly human but it increases as soon as the individual feels deprived or incapacitated. These kinds of people are often negative, critical and aggressive. In attacking others, they justify, in their own eyes, their rejection of bonds with others. The fear of abandoned is often transformed into a fear of abandoning others.

 Some causes of this type of abandonment neurosis are:

 a) Too early weaning.

 b) An upbringing in which not enough attention is paid to the child.

Abyss

 It generally symbolises the unconscious along with the instincts, which lie within. It can also symbolise the mother, the maternal breasts or the prenatal nothingness. A fear of falling while standing on the edge of an abyss can symbolise an unconscious invitation to descend into oneself in order to find the root of ones problems. It can also symbolise the fear of knowing the repressed parts of ones nature.

 Looking over an abyss shows a fear to look deeply into oneself.

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 Falling into an abyss can be a sign of latent depression or of an enduring anxiety.

Accident

 This could be a premonition of a real accident, but it is more likely to be your subconscious mind worrying that your life is crashing. Alternatively, your subconscious may be saying that you deserve some form of punishment.

Acting

 Do you feel that your life is an act, or that someone else is directing it? Stage-fright might mean nervousness about your real-life capabilities, and forgetting your lines suggests insecurity. If you are watching a play that represents your life, what lessons can you learn?

Aeroplane

 The Symbolism of the aeroplane is basically that of the bird. It is connected with freedom, climbing the sky and heaven. Being in an aeroplane signifies a spiritual search. Dreaming that one is the pilot indicates that one is one’s own master and that one is steering towards a spiritual domain. Dreaming that someone else is flying the aeroplane can signify that the ego is being led by unconscious forces. The principle context to be considered is whether the dreamer is the pilot or a passenger. Flying above problems, towards a goal, or flights of fancy, but with the implication that you are putting your trust in someone else (the pilot) to keep you safe. If you are the pilot, are you in full control? (See also flying).

Alcohol

 Relaxing your inhibitions - do you need to unwind more? Or is it a warning to drink less? (See also Wine).

Amputation

 The most frequent amputation dreams concern arms and teeth. The dreams usually relate to the anxiety at the prospect of mutilation, which is otherwise known as fear of castration. The fear of castration frequently manifests itself in dreams, usually accompanied by a sense of anxiety. We dream abut limbs being wrenched off or teeth being pulled out or falling out. We may dream about losing out hair.

 Dreaming of rotten, ripped-out or wobbly teeth is often a sign of feeling of impotency - sexual, professional, social, etc. The dreamer believes his/her personality to be diminished. Such people experience the constant sense that others seek to mutilate, humiliate or reject them. These represent the unconscious sense of being weaker than others. This sort of dream is always a sign of guilt or inferiority feelings.

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Animals

 Dreaming of animals symbolises the deeper instincts and vital forces, which are often repressed. They stand for our passions, anxieties and fears. They are projections of ourselves and are exactly what we make of them.

 Bulls: This generally depicts ones sexual drive, the basic innate drive towards caring and providing, parenthood.

 Cats: This can represent refined female sexuality. There is something very sensuous about the way a cat moves and the way in which it handles itself - with refinement and dignity. Dreaming of cats can also be intuitive dreams, warning us through its sensitivity to moods of unseen dangers.

 Cows: This usually stands fir the feminine side of ones nature, especially the giving of oneself to others.

 Snakes: The snake in dreams represents whatever is dark and obscure. It belongs to the underground invisible world. It is supposed to be the guardian of secrets and temples. It represents knowledge and wisdom. It is universal sexual symbol, an erect and phallic image. All dreams about snakes focus on the same themes - sexuality, phallic intrusion and danger within the unconscious, wisdom and knowledge.

Apple

 Love, knowledge, and temptation. Its shape might also represent the female breast. (See also Fruit).

Armour

 Protection- if it is too heavy, you may be erecting unnecessary barriers. If it is rusty, your protection may be insufficient. (See also Shield).

Ascending

 A positive symbol, such as climbing the career ladder. It also symbolises sexual intercourse. (See also Climbing).

Ascension

 Ascension contains all the associations of ‘rising’ or climbing. This may involve many types of ascent: contains, steep roads, lifts, staircases, walls, etc. Ascents into the sky are also very common, whether the body rises on its own or as a passenger or pilot of (See also aeroplanes)

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Autumn

 Seasons symbolise your stage of life, and autumn represents maturity, as well as melancholy and fading hope.

Baby

 The desire to have a baby, or a fresh start. If you are the baby, it can symbolise that you are yearning for simplicity, or seeking protection from helplessness. (See also Pregnancy).

Bathing

 Cleansing yourself. Bathing in the sea is linked with your emotions. Nude bathing suggests letting others see you as you really are, and has sexual connotations. (See also Dirty, Swimming, Washing).

Bible or hoy book

 This signifies a need for spiritual instruction. Perhaps you are looking for moral guidance, or feel a sense of holiness.

Blindness

 Feeling cut off from every aspect of the outside world, or perhaps you are being blind to an essential aspect of your life. Blindness can also suggest eye problems - check with an optician.

Blood

 Your life-force. In some religions it is sacred, because it represents your spirit. Spilt blood could mean a scarify, and bleeding from a part of your body might be a health warning. (See also Wine).

Book

 A wealth of knowledge, your life-story, or an example for you to follow - what do you need to learn? Look at the title, and dread the words on the page.

Box

 In mythology, Pandora’s box contained all the troubles of the world, but also hope. Does your box contain memories, or aspects of your life that you have shut away? A box can also represent a coffin and death, or the womb and security.

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Breast

 Caring, comfort, and nurturing motherhood, unless the dream is clearly sexual.

Bridge

 What is on the other side of the bridge? Should you cross over? If the bridge is broken, it suggests a breakdown in communication.

Burried alive

 A desire for a return to the safe darkness of the womb. If it is linked with physical breathlessness and a sense of fear, it could indicate a feeling of being trapped in your life, a genuine health problem, or simply bedding that is too heavy.

Butterfly

 Fragile, perishable beauty. Also a warning of fickleness, or perhaps a deep yearning to be free from any restrictions. Emerging from a cocoon is a clear symbol of the transition to a new stage of life.

Cancer

 It may indicate a fear of this illness. It can show that a part of our personality is out of harmony with our whole self. It can be an expression of how we feel about other people’s emotional influence on us. This influence might be eating away at our own sense os well being.

Castle

 A stronghold. Are you being besieged, or have you shut yourself off? Besieging a castle might represent an attempt at sexual conquest.

Castration

 A fear of losing manhood and potency. It can also represent the struggle between the male and female aspects of a man’s personality.

Cemetery

 A place of death, but also peace. Perhaps you want to escape from, or bury, a problem in your life.

Church

 the house of god - are you in church to receive a message? A church also represents sanctuary - what are you fleeing from?

Circle

 The circle of life, the seasons, rebirth, or immortality. Although the circle signifies wholeness and completion, it could also indicate that you are going round in circles. (See also Wheel).

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Climbing

 Pay attention to what you are climbing - if it is a rocky cliff, for example, it might indicate the difficulty of your ascent. (See also Ascending).

Clock or watch

 Perhaps a preoccupation with the passage of time, or the minutiae of life. Clockwork can refer to the heart’s emotions and health.

Cloths

 How you present yourself. Wearing someone else’s clothes can mean that you are taking on their role in life. Undressing suggests shedding your facade, and has sexual connotations. (See also Hat).

Cold

 Possibly a symbol of sexual frigidity - you are shut off from the warmth of the sun.

Cooking

 Preparing food means you are considering your physical and emotional nourishment, as well as your health. Look at the ingredients for further clues (See also Eating, Hunger, Meal).

Corridor, hallway, or passage

 Sexually, these areas represent the vagina, therefore moving along them symbolises intercourse. They can also represent your journey towards a goal, or the passage of your life. What are you moving from, and to? (See also Tunnel).

Crossroads

 A decision - which way should you turn? If the “correct” direction is obvious in your dream, your unconscious may be telling your undecided conscious mind the right path to take. Take note of where the other roads go, even if you do not take them. If there is a signpost, try to read it. (See also road).

Crown

 royalty, grandeur, achievement, and the pinnacle of success. But a crown also means ultimate responsibility- if you put on a crown and it does not fit, you may be over-reaching yourself.

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Cup

 Female sexuality. A cup, chalice, bowl, or dish can also represent the well of emotions. What does it contain? Is it full, empty, or has it been spilled? It could indicate a spiritual goal. (See also Glass of Water, Water).

Dancing

 A symbol of lovemaking. A ritual dance suggests a religious aspect; a frenetic dance could be the Dance of Death.

Day

 A dream taking place in daytime refers to the conscious mind and the “everyday”.

Dead people

 Dreams in which dead people appear are expressive of our attempts to deal with our feelings, anger or guilt in connection with the dead individuals. It may also deal with out own feellings about death. If the dream of dead people upsets the dreamer, it signifies that the dreamer has not yet come to terms with the death. However, if the dream is a pleasant one, it indicates that there has been resolution of the loss.

Death

 A new phase - a part of you needs to “die” in order to be reborn. Dreaming of someone else’s death might reveal your hostility to that person, or it could represent a facet of your personality that needs to be disposed of. (See also Killing).

 A dead body in a dream or the death of someone we know is often the death of some aspect of our lives. Lost chances or opportunities, unexpressed potentials within ourselves are frequently seen as dead bodies. If we dream of the death of someone we know it is often indicative of a desire to be free of the person or unexpressed aggression towards the person. (See also ‘funeral’).

Descending

 Delving into the depths of your unconscious to seek something of value.

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Devil

 A personification of a desire, drive, or ambition, which your unconscious mind knows is wrong. The devil might also be someone immensely attractive, who is leading you astray.

Dirty

 Your unconscious is pointing out aspects of your life that need to be cleansed. Do you feel guilty? (See also bathing, Swimming, Washing).

Drowning

 You are getting confused by your emotions - perhaps you feel you are drowning in your problems. (See also Sea, Swimming).

Earthquake

 Possibly a vision of a real earthquake, or your unconscious warning you of an impending upheaval.

Eating

 Satisfying sexual, emotional, as well as physical hunger. If you are being eaten, your unconscious is worried that you are being devoured. (See also Cooking, Hunger, Meal).

Egg

 A symbol of new life and spiritual rebirth. If you are in the egg, a new phase of life lies ahead of you.

Examinations

 All dreams constitute a form of judgement. In dreams the examiner is a part of ourselves, which judges another part. Exam dreams are therefore valuable because they let us know how we see ourselves. It can indicate self-criticism or attempts to live up to moral or intellectual standards, habits or accomplishments, worry about some coming test of selfvalue.

Excrements

 It is important to understand what anal stage is - when we are dealing with dreams of excrements. It the second stage in the psychosexual development of an individual. It appears in the 1st-3rd years of life. The main aim of this stage is a striving for independence and freedom. This is how the individual attains resolution from this stage. Dreams of excrement are exceptionally common and they relate to the ‘anal’ state of the dreamers i.e.  the way in which they either retain their constipated’ personality or give it freely.

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 [The maladaptive traits of the anal stage are – obstinacy, frugality, parsimony, etc]

Eye

 The observer, who might be you, or someone who is watching you carefully. The eye, especially in the pyramid, is also an old symbol of the all-seeing power of God.

Falling

 Falling represents loss of confidence, moral failure, losing face, a loss of social grace. It can stand for threats to usual sources of security such as money, a relationship, social image or beliefs. It can also represent falling into temptation, coming down to earth from a lofty attitude.

Family

 A desire for security and belonging, especially if you dream of being a child, Individual members of your family are usually themselves, or the roles they played in your life. Parents might appear in your dreams to express disapproval of your behaviour, even if you are an adult.

Fighting

 Usually a powerful internal struggle - the opponents are aspects of your personality at war with each other. Fighting could also refer to a conflict or battle in your waking life. (See also Killing).

Film or pop star

 Hero worship, or projection of an aspect of your personality onto the star. (See also her, Star).

Fire

 Seemingly contradictory meanings - fire can burn and destroy, or cleanse and purify. It can  refer to the fire of the passions, in which case it must be kept under control. It can also symbolise the Holy Spirit, or warmth and companionship.

 Fire along with water are the universal symbols. Fire symbolises ardour. It purifies, but on the other hand, its smoke chokes and obscures, and fire burns and devours. The fires of passion, like real fires, destroy or give life. If fire represents God, it can also symbolise the father. It can represent the admired father (ascendant, like the flame) but as a destructive element it can also be seen as a father who reduces and annihilates by his tyranny and authoritarianism. They can symbolise sexuality in abroad sense. It also shows impulses towards spirituality and towards the lights of inner truths. Dreams of fire can indicate suppressed emotions like anger, which the patient is unable to express in reality.

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Fish

 A symbol of the deep unconscious, creativity, Christianity, and the phallus.

Flower

 Beauty and the vitality of nature. Flowers also symbolise sexuality, usually female, depending on the shape of the flower. Opening buds suggest that you are about to blossom. (See also Rose).

Flying

 The aspect of flying connects with the gaining of independence and expression of ones true potential. Flying can also indicate the dealing with our internal influences, which hold us down such as anxiety, depression, self-doubt, insecurity, etc. Flying alone occurs most frequently and shows the independent aspect of flying. It indicates a need to rise higher. It is an attempt to rise over one’s difficulties and conflicts.

 The yearning to soar in spiritual or intellectual ascent. It can  also be a sign of escapism, but by looking down on your life you might be able to see new solutions to old problems. The feeling of flying in dreams can be intensely sensual - who is flying with you? (See also Aeroplane; Birds, pages 40-41)

Fog

 Doubt and uncertainty. You cannot see the path ahead clearly, your goals are hidden, or your emotions are confused.

Food

 In dreams, food stands for nourishment for our growth as an individual. It can  also stand for something we are taking into ourselves as new experiences. If there is a dream of food in connection with a particular person, it stands for being hungry for a relationship with them. Giving food stands for giving of oneself - one’s time, energy, love. Dreams of meals indicate social pleasure and acceptance. Having food alone indicates independence, loss of family ties, lack of social relationships.

Fool

 This archetypal figure probably represents you stepping our native and unprepared along a dangerous path. It implies that you need to take more care and consult your wiser aspects.

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Forests

 Forests consist of darkness, dangers, fertility, clear dells and glades. Forests in dreams stand for our unconscious lives. Whatever we look for in the forest of our dreams, in actuality we look for within our subconscious. Entering deep into a forest is to enter ourselves hoping to find clarity. Leaving a forest indicates the achievement of our search and usually leaves us more mature and better equipped to tackle our personal problems.

Fountain

 Water denotes the emotional and spiritual, and the energy of the fountain suggests the fountain of life, youth, and the fount of all wisdom. A powerfully spurting fountain might symbolise male sexuality.

Fruit

 A symbol of a result of natural outcome, such as “being fruitful”. (See also Apple).

Funeral

 Dreams of funeral deals with one’s feelings about one’s own  occasionally it may indicate a warning about the health of the person buried. Dreaming of one’s own funeral depicts one’s own attitude about one’s death. It can prove a remainder of what one wants out of life, a desire for sympathy from one’s family, or a retreat from the world. Dreaming of someone else’s funeral may indicate a wish for that person to be dead or may indicate a desire to withdraw from the influence of that person. (See also death).

Game

 Playing games an indicate that you take life too seriously, or they might mirror competitive situations. Athletic games may be a sexual symbol.

Garden

 Your inner life. If it is so tidy that it seems sterile, perhaps your life is too ordered. If it is overgrown, compare it with your waking life. If you can cultivate your garden, make it restful and colourful, because this could transfer to your life. A garden can also have sexual connotations - undergrowth, for example, can represent public hair, and a walled garden can signify sexual repression.

Ghost

 Do not be frightened of a ghost in your dream - it may be a “spiritual messenger” from a hidden part of yourself, therefore ask for its message.

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Glass of water

 The need for spiritual sustenance, or it could simply mean that you are thirsty. (See also Cup, Water).

God

 If you dream that god is speaking to you, listen very carefully. Whether it is god, your conscience, or your unconscious spirituality, the message will be significant.

Hair

 Long, flowing hair expresses a desire for sensuality. An unwelcome haircut implies a fear of repression. Losing your hair suggests insecurity.

Hands

 Are the hands moving in gestures of beckoning, applause, or warding off? Doing things with your hands might imply a practical application of your dream in your waking life.

Hat

 A statement about individuality or conforming, authority, the military, respect, or religious observance. (See also Clothes).

Head

 The rational approach to a subject, and the dreamer’s conscious mind. If the head is huge, perhaps you are arrogant.

Heat

 Sexual passion, but it could also mean that you are too hot-tempered. Extreme heat, as in waking life, suggests danger.

Hero

 This archetypal figure is possibly a male or female warrior, or perhaps a heroic film star. Courageous and strong, the hero could be showing a bold but difficult course that you should follow. (See also Film or Pop Star).

Hill or mountain

 Gently rounded hills represent breasts, and climbing a hill could mean sexual activity. Climbing a mountain represents reaching towards a spiritual goal. Going rapidly downhill could mean that you are out of control in your life.

Holiday

 It indicates a sense of relaxation, being independent. It signals a satisfaction of ones own needs. It shows that a person has reached a stage in ones life in which one can rest on ones past achievements.

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Hunger

 Physical hunger, or symbolic of sexual desire and emotional hunger. It could also mean covetous hunger for power, prestige, or wealth. (See also Cooking, Eating, meal).

Ice

 Sexual frigidity. Melting ice might suggest that you are becoming a warmer person.

Illness

 If you dream of a specific illness, it might be wise to consult a doctor. Illnesses sometimes have emotional causes - see if your dreams can help you to heal yourself.

Injury

 May be you have been injured, or are causing harm to others or to yourself.

Invisibilityperhaps you are hiding, feel ashamed of something, or have a low self-image. being invisible enables you to be a voyeur, but beware of seeing that which is better left unseen.

Journey

 This could be a spiritual journey or voyage of discovery, perhaps self-discovery. It could also mean your daily journey through life, your life itself, or a real-life physical journey. Dreams of journeys usually indicate our feelings about how our life is moving with its ups and downs, our goals and aims, challenges and opportunities which we have to face.

Key

 If you kill someone from real life in your dream, perhaps this is revelation of your unresolved anger towards that person. People in your dreams are often aspects of yourself - is there a part of you which you hate, or even which needs to be killed? (See also Death, Fighting, Knife or Sword).

Kiss

 Who are you kissing? Is the kiss purely wish-fulfilment, the prelude to a longed-for sexual relationship? Or is it a social kiss, a kiss of allegiance to a monarch or a bishop, or a kiss of betrayal?

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Knife or sword

 According to Freud, a knife is a phallic symbol, and a sword is a penetrating erection. A knife or sword can also mean cutting through problems sharply and incisively. A sword could represent the sword of justice, or the sword of Damocles. (See also Killing).

Ladder

 According to Freud, climbing a ladder means sexual intercourse (moving up and own.). It could also refer to climbing the career or social ladder, or to reaching greater heights in any endeavour.

Language

 Being unable to understand the language you hear in your dream suggests a fear of insularity in your waking life. It can also imply a serious breakdown in verbal or other forms of communication.

Late, being

 Insecurity and lack of self-confidence, or an indication that you need to watch your punctuality more carefully. Also a yearning for more time, and a wish that you were young again.

Lighting

 Powerful natural forces, or a thunderbolt from the God Thor with a message. A flash of illumination, revelation, and awareness, suddenly making everything clear.

Lost being

 Being lost depicts confusion, a loss of motivation or ability to make clear decisions. It may suggest that one is being negatively influenced by certain situations that have arisen in one’s life and have not yet been noticed. An indication that you are going astray, or are neglecting an important part of yourself. Also insecurity and lack of self-confidence. Who finds you, and who or what do they represent in your life?

Love

 Wish-fulfilment - who is the other person? Or possibly an expression of your desire or need for love. If it is family love, perhaps a wish for the security of childhood, or an indication that love is lacking in your current family.

Map

 Reading a map suggests trying to find your way through life, and planning its direction. If you have difficulty reading the map, perhaps you feel that you have lost your way of life.

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Maze or labyrinth

 What are you searching for, at the centre? What puzzle are you trying to solve?

Meal

 Taking in physical and emotional nourishment. Also the companionship of people sharing a table, which can be spiritual or sexual. Who is with you and who is missing? (See also Cooking, Eating, Hunger).

Milk

 A symbol of comfort and nourishment, especially mother’s milk. It can also indicate a yearning for emotional support, and has sexual connotations because of its colour and consistency.

Monster

 A representation of your deeper, darker aspects which, in waking life, are kept concealed. Try to learn about these aspects, and integrate them safely within yourself. Monsters may also symbolise a major problem in your waking life. (See also Nightmare).

Moon

 The Moon is symbolic of intuition, love and lunacy, poetry and deception, magic and mystery. It is he mystical side or religion, and in most cultures the Moon epitomises the mysterious female - longed for, but the mistress of illusions.

Mouth

 According to Freud, the mouth and all other orifices are equated with the vagina, but the mouth is also used for eating (physical and emotional substance), breathing (life and spiritual life), and communicating with others.

Music

 Because music speaks to your deepest emotional roots, it can summon up many feelings. Is there harmony or disharmony? Are you creating the music, or conducting it?

Nakedness

 Perhaps you want other people to see you as you really are, or you may want to “bare your soul”, or be the centre of attention. If you feel embarrassed, are you afraid of being uncovered in some way in your waking life? Nakedness could be a plea for a return to innocence, or brazen sexuality.

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Night

 Delving deeply into your unconscious, or perhaps there is much in your life that is hidden. Wandering in the dark could signify a lack of direction, and depression. Night is also the traditional time for romance and sex - is it sexual dream?

Nightmare

 During a nightmare, keep clam, and try to step back, rather than be involved. What are you being shown? If you are still involved in the nightmare, approach the most terrifying part calmly, and ask what it wants. Do not fear it because it is probably part of yourself. (See also Monster).

 During dreams may evoke intense frightening or disgusting emotions within us. Such dreams are called nightmares.

 Nightmares arise from certain causes –

 1. Unconscious memories of intense emotions.

 2. Intense anxiety which was not fully released at the time.

 3. Childhood fears such as abandonment, or being lost, loss of a parent, fear of strangers or a parent.

 4. Fears connected with internal drives such as aggression, sexuality, changes encountered during growth and development.

 5. Precognition of certain events.

 It is important to understand the cause of the nightmare. Once understood, it can be more easily faced. The simple act of imagining ourselves in the same the nightmare situation and facing the frightening thing will begin the process of resolving our internal fears.

Nudity

 Seeing oneself nude in dreams indicates a sense of inferiority. Clothes are a form of protection and being unclothed is to feel stripped bare and that people are seeing right through us, being vulnerable. These people may feel inner deprivation and inadequacy. However it can also indicate that the person has acquired emotional stability and security and hence does not require our social clothing. It can thus indicate a reunion with ones inner self.

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Old age

 Time often swaps labels in dreams, and old age, late evening, autumn, or winter may all have the same meaning. Old age might refer to your own old age, or be suggesting that you compare yourself to your parents or grandparents, and learn from any similarities. It could also be an archetype representing wisdom.

Pen or pencil

 According to Freud, pens and pencils always represent the penis, and a dry pen or a broken pencil symbolises impotence. But they are also used for writing - is your unconscious sending you a message, or suggesting that you communicate with someone?

Photograph or paintng

 If a person is the subject of the photograph or painting, the person could be in the picture because you feel distant from them, or your normal image of the person may be distanced from reality.

Pillar or column

 In Freudian symbolism, a penis. A broken column represents impotence. Pillars or columns also represent strength and support. What or who are they supporting - is it you?

Pregnancy

 Sometimes a symbol is literal - perhaps you or your partner is pregnant, or want to be. Also creativity and new beginning. Metaphorically, are you “carrying” an idea, plan, or project, which may be about to come to fruition? (See also Baby).

Priest

 An authority, figure, representing conventional attitudes to religious beliefs or morality, or a messenger from your unconscious. A priest might also represent important rites of passage, including christening, funerals, and weddings. (See also Wedding).

Pursues

 Indicates that we are being pursued by what we have created with our thoughts, emotions. We may be avoiding sexual feelings, responsibility, a sense of failure, guilt, emotional pain, grief, etc. Being chased by an animal - indicates ones passions, anger, natural feelings. Being chased by someone of the opposite sex - fear of love or sex. Indicates being haunted by a past relationship. Being chased by a thing or a creature - indicates usually a past experience or trauma, a childhood hurt.

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Quarrel

 Dreaming of a quarrel with someone implies there is something wrong with your real-life relationship, even if it has not yet surfaced.

Queen or king

 Major archetypal figures, or perhaps your mother or father. If you are the queen or king, is this by your own desire, indicating arrogance, or by public acclamation? It could symbolise authority, social status, or responsibility. Dreaming of the Queen of heaven could represent the Virgin Mary.

Rain

 Associated with the emotions. A light shower is refreshing, steady rain is depressing, and a heavy storm is oppressive and dangerous.

Rainbow

 In religious symbolism, a sign of a covenant between God and mankind - is there an equivalent in your life? In folklore, gold is at the end of the rainbow - could this indicate that something beautiful will end in disappointment?

River

 The river of life, and the flow of the emotions. Is the water high or low, fast-flowing or turgid? Where does the river come from, and go to? If it is a canal rather than a river, may be your emotions are too tightly channelled. (See also Sea).

Road

 A portion of the path that you are following through life. Is it straight and clear, or winding and interesting? Side-tracks might delay you, and a cul-de-sac is a dead end. Roadworks are obstacles between you and your goals. (See also Cross-roads).

Rope

 If you are bound by ropes, remember that ultimately it is you who has tied them. Is there something in your waking life that will entangle you and restrict your choices?

Rose

 Female sexuality and virginity (the rosebud), and the symbol of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In Freemasonry, “under the rose” means a secret. The rose also signified spiritual self-knowledge. (See also Flower).

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Running

 According to Freud, sexual intercourse. But are you running away from something or someone? Or towards somewhere - a place of escape or safety? Is it a race? Do you long to be first, or fear that you are being left behind?

School

 Revisiting old triumphs or torments, or a need for a structured life. Who is teaching you, and what are you being taught? (See also Teacher).

Sea

 The great sea of the emotions. Are you sailing calmly, or are you storm-tossed? If the sea seems threatening, perhaps you are fearful of deep emotions. The depths of the ocean represent your unconscious, and a long voyage can signify the voyage of your life. (See also Drowning, River, Ship, Swimming).

Searching

 What are you searching for? Is it happiness, security, friendship, love, a lost part of yourself, the meaning to life, or anything else? Do you find it? Where?

Sex

 Possibly wish-fulfilment - who is the other person? If it is someone inappropriate, such as a married friend, the dream could be a safety valve for your feelings, or a warning that you are getting too close. If it is a member of your family, try to analyse your emotional relationship. If your sexual orientation in the dream is different from waking life, the dream may be revealing an unacknowledged closeness with the other person, or perhaps you should pay more attention to your anima or animus.

Shield

 A shield is an essential part of armour - what are you protecting yourself from? What are you using? Are you hiding? Is the shield somebody you are sheltering behind? Or are you shielding someone else? (See also Armour).

Ship or boat

 Venturing out on the sea of your emotions - are you the captain, or a passenger? Are you storm-tossed, calm or stagnant? If ship’s motion is sensual - is this a sexual dream? (See also Sea).

Silence and deafness

 Is this an oppressive silence, or a respite from the clatter of your life? If nobody can hear you speak, perhaps you feel ignored. If you are deaf to others, this could be a warning that you should listen more carefully.

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Sky

 Spiritually, high ideals, or creative intellect. Is it peaceful or stormy? (See also Aeroplane; Birds, pages 40-41, Flying, Lightening).

Spring (season)

 A fresh start, the promise of new life, childhood, and early youth.

Spring (water)

 Fresh and life-giving, a source of healing and spirituality, and emotions.

Star

 Home and guidance. A five-pointed star may mean magic, a six-pointed star could refer to the star of David, sexuality (see Numbers) or the physical and the spiritual working together. A star might also refer to a starring role. (See also Film or Pop Star).

Stranger

 This archetypal figure is also known as the Shadow. It is probably half-hidden an unrecognised, and represents the darker, most negative, least pleasant, and most concealed aspects of your own personality.

Summer

 This season represents fulfilment, warmth, the goodness of nature, late youth, and early adulthood. In mythology, the Summer Land is known as a place of goodness.

Sun

 The giver of light, warmth, energy, and life. It might represent the glory of God, knowledge and intellect, and its light can reveal the truth. Although it is usually a positive symbol, it can also destroy.

Swimming

 According to Freud, swimming represents sexual intercourse. Water often symbolises emotions, therefore swimming can mean being in control of your feelings. Are you keeping your head above water? Are you of your depth, or fighting against the tide? (See also Bathing, Dirty, Drowning, Sea, Washing).

Teacher

 An authority figure, expressing approval or disapproval. Perhaps the teacher is giving you an important lesson, in which case you should listen carefully. If you are the teacher, how is your class responding? (See also School).

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Toy

 A wish for childhood simplicity and security. What or whom does the toy represent? Perhaps you want to exert more control over certain elements of your own life, or does it signify your desire for control of real-life situations? Are you toying with someone, or treating someone as a plaything?

Tree

 Stability and strength. Trees are alive, and might symbolise people. They can also be sacred - they join the ground (the material) to the sky (the spiritual). Many trees have spiritual significance, such as the World Tree (Yggdarsil), and the Tree of Life.

Tunnel

 According to Freud, the vagina, therefore moving along it represents birth or sexual intercourse. Also the passage of life, or a journey into your unconscious. What is at each end of the tunnel? (See also Corridor, Hallway, or Passage).

Twins

 Archetypal figures, suggesting the need for balance, perhaps between your intellect and your intuition.

Valley

 A valley between gently folding hills, especially if there are scrubby bushes and a cleft, perhaps with a spring or stream, is a clear and common image of the female loins. Also the Valley of the Shadow of Death, or the Vale of Sorrow.

Wall

 A barrier - is it keeping you out, or shutting you in? have you erected barriers between yourself and other people, or have you walled off parts of yourself?

War

 A battle - perhaps between your conscious and unconscious desires, or your intellect and emotions. It could also be a metaphor for a conflict in your waking life.

Washing

 What are you washing away? Are you abnegating responsibility or absolving yourself of guilt? Perhaps you need to examine your conscience. (See also Bathing, Dirty, Swimming).

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Water

 Your emotions. Still water represents the deep well of your emotions. Running water denotes lively emotions, and cleansing. Stagnant water suggests that your emotional life is unhealthy or dead. A dam indicates that you are bottling up your emotions. Also the water of life, as well as associations with spirituality, birth, and rebirth. (See also Bathing, Glass of water, River, Sea, Swimming). The context of the dream reveals whether we are at ease or in difficulty.

Wedding

 The formalisation of an informal relationship, and a suggestion that two ideas should be brought together. It could also represent any other religious occasion (See Priest).

Wheel

 The wheel of life. A wheel can represent a mandala, a mystical symbol of the pattern of life. The wheel can also symbolise the zodiacal circle, or the wheel of fortune. If it is broken, it suggests your life has been derailed. (See also Circle).

Wind

 Your spirit or the Holy Spirit. A breeze is refreshing; a hurricane is destructive.

Wine

 In the communion service, red wine and blood are interchangeable symbols, and red wine is a spiritual symbol for life. If your own wine is spilled, this could indicate self-sacrifice; if you spill someone else’s, your might be spilling their blood. (See also Alcohol, Blood).

Winter

 Coldness, old age, and death, but probably emotional rather than physical death. The end of a natural cycle.

Wise old man or woman

 These archetypal figures sometimes appear as your father or mother, or as authority figures such as a king or queen, priest, teacher, or judge. The Wise Old Man or Woman is likely to be the voice of moral correctness, your unconscious, or perhaps your conscience telling you how to behave.