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…on Dreams Dr. Peter Demuth Clinical Psychologist & Jungian Analyst.

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1 …on Dreams Dr. Peter Demuth Clinical Psychologist & Jungian Analyst

2 Furthermore, after much reflection, I can sense that I am at an impasse. My river doesnt flow. My creativity has no life. My life has no vitality. I am stuck in a place that is perhaps only exited from- not by escape, but from turning around to face that which I would prefer to escape from. My ego fears this place most of all. Is it possible, however, that escape only results in additional imprisonment? If so, let me go back into the room.

3 The AI … I am back in the room. I feel no fear as of yet. Me: Where is my fear? Where is the cause of my fear? Cause: I am here. I am the cause of your fear. I am that nun who recently stopped you in your tracks as you tried to escape into the intellect. I had to place my face into your face. I had to press my body into your body so that you could see that there was no place to go. My message is: Forget about escaping -- that is if you genuinely want to grow. Me: I do wish to grow.

4 … continued Cause: Well then, stay in this place. To leave it is to remain stuck while believing that you are free. This is the big illusion. Me: I am confused it seems. This makes no sense to me. Cause: As long as you run from this room you run from the place that can provide you with freedom. By running away from your fear you run away from what you need to come to terms with.

5 October 25, 2007 (Session # 40): Joe presented the following Dream. I see Jill, Sunnys mother. She is radiant. She is open to dialogue. There is no sense of animosity or judgment. She is wearing a white blouse with sheer arms. I ask her how she is doing. I anticipate something like: They removed my breastsbut she says instead, they removed my legs.

6 Associations: Joe stated: Jill seemed peaceful and serene. She seemed engaging. She had good breastsstacked. Joe didnt have any associations about the removal of Jills legs except to recognize that they are (the legs) necessary for movement. He had anticipated the removal of her breasts since he had read about Jills breast cancer on the Internet. Her lack of animosity or judgment in the dream scape is of some surprise however – enough to help Joe to expand his consciousness. He stated She was open to dialogue. Joe had heretofore filtered his experience of Jill (and his mother) largely through the funnel of the negative mother complex, someone out to hurt him or neglect him. That stance seems ready to attenuate to some degree due in part to the openness of Jill in the dream but also because of his mothers recent overtures to develop their relationship to a deeper level. At the end of our session I suggested that he do some active imagination with Jill. This is the second such suggestion. I encouraged him to ask her why she is showing up in his dreams.

7 April 26, 2007 (Session #16): Joe Todays session began with Joe talking about Sunnys mother. He described Jill as about 42 at the time that he had met Sunny, who was Jills only daughter, age 22. David, Jills husband, was a burned out bureaucrat who developed leukemia during Joes relationship with Sunny. Joe recalled,I somehow knew that Jill could intuit or recognize that I was a risk for her daughter, meaning that Jill could somehow sense that Joe had a number of emotional struggles that he was dealing with and that he did not bring rock solid credentials to his relationship with Sunny. Concomitantly, there was mounting evidence that suggested that Joe had an entrenched complex which caused him to suspect the feminine as non-giving, insensitive, with-holding, and hurtful.

8 Joe came into todays session and stated: Youre not going to believe this. On Wednesday while I was at the health club Jill came to me in the middle of my workout and wanted to talk. Heres what we said to one another. Joe: Jill. Finally we can talk. J: Yes. Joe: You were ravishing the last time I saw you. J: Youre too kind, though, as we both know, I was not real. Joe: Beauty has its prerogatives. J: I would have though so. Joe: You were beautiful. J: Was I? Joe: You were. But, it seemed to me, not very happy. J: I was frustrated. Joe: I think that I understandto the small degree that I am able. I remember when you told me about Davids low affect. That seemed to really trouble you.

9 AI Continued… J: I was not entirely happy. Joe: At one time you had terrific potential. J: Yes. Joe: Me too. J: Yes. Joe: Jill, I am sorry. I am sorry if you felt like I was competing with you. J: If you felt that way it was because I probably was. Joe: And you know what? I wasnt in your league and I was in your home. It was bad form. J: I could have used some form Joe: Yeah, but this is my of improvement myself. apology or explanation or exploration or whatever you want to call it. Frankly, I didnt really know you.

10 AI Continued… Joe: I knew very little about youyour struggles, your dreams... I reacted to you in a typical way, not in a creative way. I was looking for someone specific. I was looking for someone to help me with the love that I felt for your daughter and you werent ready or able to assume that role, so I dont know what I did, but whatever it was, it wasnt creative. If only you had been more nice and supportive.

11 Reflections: We spent a lot of time discussing this active imagination. Joe was really taken by it and felt really touched by its openness. The statement I was looking for someone to help me with the love… seemed most significant. In the state of the above abaissement du niveau mental Joes ego appears to have dropped down into a space where it could hear the curative message of the unconscious, namely that what he needs is some positive assistance from the feminine -- assistance that he has heretofore been weary of and has discounted. As we talked further the occasional tics that Joe has exhibited in other sessions began to increase. It appeared that something within Joe was being stirred up. He looked very troubled. He began to cry for several minutes followed by a period of silence. We remained quiet. The tics began to slowly decrease and then stopped.

12 October 10, 2008 [Session # 64] Faith presented the following dream: I am in a vacation place. It seems to be a foreign city. Mom and I are walking on a busy European waterfront, almost like the riverside in Florence near the Ponte Vecchio, but instead of a river there was the Sea. It was evening and the lights in the shop windows were on and bright. People were out enjoying the night. Mom and I walked on, talking I suppose, and so engaged in conversation that we had not noticed that we had walked out of the busy district into a darker, quieter residential area. The ocean was black and to our left. The buildings lining the ocean and to our right were all dark, as though everyone had gone to sleep. Behind us, the tourist or shopping area still showed bright because of all the lights. I do not remember where it came from but suddenly a bear was there. It was an enormous Kodiak brown bear. We must have been where he didnt want us to be because he came after us. I was afraid of it. I ushered Mom into the Sea, trying to keep our distance from the bear. The bear climbed onto a rock outcropping, and then stopped. He seemed to be deciding whether or not to follow us into the Sea. Was he coming after us or was he giving up?

13 We waded out deeper, up to our necks with waves alternating the depth of the water. Mom appeared mute. And then it came a giant wave. I remembered the giant wave from the previous dream. I am getting used to this. I know what to do. I prepare to dive under the wave and tell Mom what she needs to do as well. We came out of the Sea and walked to the sidewalk next to the buildings. I saw a woman just ahead of us. Now we were once again walking back towards the lighted area of the city. The woman moved along the sidewalk just ahead of us and then ducked into a courtyard. I was hoping that the bear was gone, but I did not look back to see.

14 Associations: Away from the city: We were just chatting and had lost sight of where we were. Bear: I know about bears because I have lived in Alaska. The bear is a very strong animal and can be very fierce. Into the water: To get away from the bear. I seemed to know what to do. I was used to waves by now. This is interesting because mother has always seemed to know what to do- but not in this particular case. I was the one with the expertise. The Woman: I didnt know her. She had ducked into the shadows.

15 I noted Faiths recognition of her dream egos ability to act without the guidance or approval of her mother in the dream. She seemed excited about this ability and more confident overall. I suggested to Faith that we needed to find out more about the woman in the shadows (likely an element of her actual shadow). This woman seemed to hold some kind of clue to the meaning of the dream. I was wondering also about this bear. Might it provide something essential? Could the bear represent a positive aspect of the father archetype? Might the bears energy help to further attenuate the influence of the negative mother complex which already seemed less formidable in the dreamscape?

16 While that was my thinking, it also seemed to represent a possible fear of her fathers rage in its pre-metabolized form? Concomitantly, was this an unacknowledged anger and rage that Faith carried? How might she learn to access these energies in moderate amounts and make use of them? I also wondered about Faiths need to protect her mother in this dream. Was this need somehow keeping her away from relating to the bear? I suggested to Faith that she do some active imagination in regards to two elements of the dream: the woman in the shadows and the bear.

17 October 23, 2008 [Session #66] Faith followed up on my suggestion to try some active imagination with both the bear and the shadowy woman from the dream of 10/10/08. Here is what she reported. I go back into the darkness. There I meet the shadow woman and we have a talk. In this talk I state that I am afraid of the bear and the woman tells me that there is no reason to be afraid of the bear. She tells me that the bear only wants to play, but that it feels neglected. I then seek out the bear. When I encounter the bear I am very afraid but then notice that there is sadness in the bears eyes; a teardrop. I start to see the bear as sadnot scary. I engage the bear. He tells me that I have been neglecting him and that he only wants to play with me.

18 Faith was very surprised by this active imagination. She experienced a sense of relief because something that had scared her, something that had been unconscious, was now available to her. This bear energy appeared to be quite instinctual and powerful. It may be the very energy she needs in order to stand up to the negative complexes which have stifled her growth. The knowledge that the bear was not trying to scare or eat or threaten Faith enlivened her and seemed like a great revelation. In that moment of realization, Faith seemed to grow stronger.

19 3 rd. Example of AI: Dream: I was walking through a plaza when I noticed an obese black man on the second floor of a building attempting to crawl over the protective railing. I was afraid that he was going to jump but I didnt want to get involved and tried to ignore the situation. He slipped over the rail and jumped down hard onto the pavement below with a splat. He seemed dazed but unhurt and got up and walked away.

20 The AI: P: Why are you jumping off th4e second story? I had nothing else to do. P: That makes no sense. Werent you afraid of getting hurt or killing yourself? It doesnt matter- I want to feel something! Why do you just ignore me? P: I dont want to be involved. I dont need any other problem. Isnt that a problem? P: What do you mean?

21 That you want no problems. Maybe if you faced your problems youd feel better. P: Im not the one jumping off the second story building. I didnt get hurt. P: But you could have. But I didnt and I walked away. I took a risk. P: A stupid risk if you ask me. And by the way: Why are you so fat? I let myself go. P: But why? Because, what does it matter? P: Well, your health matters. But its my health.

22 P: Dont you want to feel and be your best? Yeah. But I dont want to work for it. P: Why not? Its too hard. P: Everything is hard. What is the point then if everything is hard? P: Well- to achieve something. To accomplish something. I want to, but it seems so far to go. P: Start one foot at a time. The journey of a 1000 miles starts with the first step.

23 References Cwik, A. (1995). Jungian Analysis. Second Edition. Edited by Murray Stein, Open Court Books, Chicago. Jung, C G (1945). On the nature of dreams. CW, Vol. 8, University Press, Princeton, New Jersey. Whitmont, E.C. (1990). On dreams and dreaming. In Dreams and Analysis, eds. N. Schwartz-Salant and M. Stein, Chiron Books, Wilmette, Illinois. Whitmont, E. & Perera, S. (2002). Dreams, A Portal to the Source, Routledge Books, New York. Wiley, James (1995). Jungian Analysis. Second Edition. Edited by Murray Stein, Open Court Books, Chicago.

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