Dispatches in Dream Interpretation: My First Dream Work Class

10 May

This week I went to the first of four Dream Work classes I’m taking at this new age Christian church in my town. These classes are based on the teachings of Jeremy Taylor and also to some degree on Carl Jung.

So what is dream work?

Essentially, we sit in a circle and share a dream one by one, retelling it as if in the present tense. People can ask you questions to clarify the dream and to get a better feel for what you saw and experienced.

Then, one by one, dream by dream, we retell each others dreams from our own point of view, beginning with the phrase “If this were my dream…”

This is called Dream Projection.

You take the dream as if it were your own and explore what it means to you in that context.

This then leads to something about yourself and maybe, or maybe not, a relevant interpretation for the original dreamer.

This is what I imagine group therapy feels like.

Before this class I was not familiar with this term “dream work”, nor was I aware that there’s dream work circles around the country and that it’s a little movement of its own with its own leaders and guides.

Truth be told, I have a tense relationship with the practice of dream interpretation.

I think dream dictionaries are mostly rubbish. I’ve never owned one. Through the power of suggestion, the definitions in the dream dictionary will end up projecting onto your dream what they think it’s about, not what you would otherwise think it’s about if you hadn’t seen it in the dream dictionary. It kinds reminds me of astrology.

The dream work classes do not use dream dictionaries, thankfully. But something is going on that just nags the skeptic inside of me to be on guard.

By the way, I should also mention the dynamics of the group and our setting. We sit in a circle in a big room that’s actually a bookstore.

(Seeing the books here is what caused me to call this place a new age Christian church. I saw titles by Ramtha (a children’s book!), Robert Monroe, Deepak Chopra, Paul Davies, and the Dali Lama!)

There’s only 5 of us in the class. That includes myself and the teacher. Everyone else is female and in their 40’s and 50’s. I feel a bit out of place being 26 and male, and I coincidentally I was wearing all black clothing that day too, so I hope I wasn’t projecting some lame “goth” vibe.

Anyhow, there’s 3 more classes left in the series.

Despite my skepticism towards dream interpretation methods in general, it is really interesting to meet with a group of people who are very interested in dreams but come at it from such a different perspective as I do.

Sometimes I think I’m too skeptic for my own good. (Or maybe I’m just shy about exposing myself in front of a group and I cover it up with skepticism.)

Honestly, I am trying to keep an open mind here so that I can take in something new from these classes.


One Response to “Dispatches in Dream Interpretation: My First Dream Work Class”

  1. Zataod May 19, 2007 at 12:48 pm #

    That sounds like a very cool class. There something similar here, but I can’t quite find the time to take it yet.

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