Presentation on theme: "By John A. Sanford Central Thesis: Dreams should be regarded as God’s “Forgotten Language” or “Voice of God”"— Presentation transcript:
By John A. Sanford Central Thesis: Dreams should be regarded as God’s “Forgotten Language” or “Voice of God”
Dreams: clear expressions of our nature Problem: dream speak in symbols Solution: talk to dreamer to understand symbolic language Source: the unconscious: What if it has something to say? Meaning of Dream: not found in conscious
Psychosomatic symptoms Repeated Dreams: unconscious psyche communicating an important idea/theme Hints at a spiritual or psychological problem Golf dream; Sinister adversary 1 and 2 Who is trying to “kill” the dreamer? What does it mean to die in a dream?
The enemy is our self Difficult to face our self Guilt, shame, weaknesses We banish these unacceptable things to the unconscious : becomes our Shadow Death: extinction or transformation? Change, transformation, growth, only occurs when the “old” in us dies Mystery (paschal) at heart of Christianity Paul: “I die daily” (Cor 15:31)
Perhaps shadow wants to transform Tom Inner conflict and running away from self Third Dream: facing the Shadow Biblical parallel: Jacob Wrestling with Adversary Physical condition immediately improved Intelligence behind these meaningful dreams? God?
Louise: middle age, capable, respected The “important things” in our lives and the anxiety when we lose them The “dark maid” and cleaning up the back yard Who is the servant woman? A positive shadow Clothes usually represent persona
Insisting on a one-sided personality and becoming its victim Behind every human attribute there hides it’s opposite Meeting the “beatnik” at the round table Do you recognize me?: A vital relationship of the two Who is the real self? Symbol of Wholeness? The Table Religious symbols of squares, circles, spirals
Cain and Abel; Jacob and Esau; Mary and Martha; The Elder and Prodigal son Message for Today? Unrecognized Shadow projected out to society and “Other” Example: the demonic side of Humanity: WWII, the Holocaust Darfur: Israeli/Palestinian conflict; culture wars Talking of peace, preparing for war today Where is our unredeemed shadow found today?
The Shadow is real Our dreams compensate our conscious attitudes by exposing us to our shadow Shadow has value Feared and rejected, it becomes evil: recognized and accepted it becomes part of whole person Projection of Shadow onto Other Dreams tell us there is something important beyond ego Unity of self is needed if world is to escape disaster
Dreams not nonsense but intelligible communications from Self (Image, or Voice of God) Jesus: “Agree with thine adversary quickly while thou art in the way with him (Math 5:25) Not just our outer adversary but our inner
Margaret : cruel, abusive childhood; successful, multiple marriages Dream 1: large square, shadowy room: tubular iron shift in center with shining white paper floating in water Dog jumps in and she screams Dream 2: Looking up and seeing shower of square paper: blank, shiny: pleasant feeling
3 main ingredients: The iron well, the paper, the dog Well: symbol of earth, hell, also life, fruit: center of things, must be looked at, entered into Paper: clean, totality, wholeness; symbol of her life: promise of renewed, whole life received from up high (Heaven, God) Dog: domesticated animal: saving significance: instinctively knows what our conscious mind does not
Isaiah 1:18: “Though your sins be like scarlet, they will be as white as snow” Guilt eventually removed Sequel dream: man pushes her into well: finds a pleasant garden: fear reduced after Cross as symbol of forgiveness Forgiveness as ‘Work of the Soul’: an inner experience Belief in Christ’s redemption of us: many still don’t feel redeemed
Cause? Lack of recognition of own guilt Pop culture promotion of guiltlessness *You can and should “have it all”! Casual Christians: Christ has forgiven so why feel guilty? Guilt often repressed, not resolved Unconscious guilt prevents resolution Result: nameless anxieties, self-sabotage, psychosomatic illness
Freudian approach: guilt caused by overbearing super-ego (reflects what Jung calls collective thinking) Development of conscience key tool for ego: to rise above basic animal desires For Jung, source of morality beyond collective or parent’s morality: God’s morality communicated through the Higher Self within (Dreams Conscious acceptance, unconscious rejection of behavior
Freud: Cannot repress our sexual nature in name of religion However, we also cannot repress religious or moral nature in name of our instincts Strive for balance of two Redemptive potential of guilt Tend not to take our guilt or potential for forgiveness serious enough
Dreams remind us both of our guilt, and our forgiveness Compensates for one-sided conscious attitude appears that an unconscious wisdom lives within: sees ourselves differently Goal: healing and wholeness Dreams speak in symbols: source both personal and collective unconscious