Our Quest To Practical Spirituality.

Spiritual World => Dreams => Topic started by: Medusa on June 24, 2009, 01:35:01 pm

Title: Carl Jung Dream Theorist
Post by: Medusa on June 24, 2009, 01:35:01 pm
Like his mentor Sigmund Freud, Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1960) also believes in the existence of the unconscious. However, he does not see the unconscious as animalistic, instinctual, or sexual; he sees it as more spiritual. Eventually, Jung split with Freud due to their differing views on dreams.

According to Jung, dreams are a way of communicating and acquainting yourself with the unconscious. Dreams are not attempts to conceal your true feelings from the waking mind, but rather they are a window to your unconscious. They serve to guide the waking self to achieve wholeness and offer a solution to a problem you are facing in your waking life.

Jung views the ego as your sense of self and how you portray yourself to the world.  Part of Jung's theory is that all  things can be viewed as paired opposites: good/evil, male/female, or love/hate. So working in opposition to the ego, is the "counterego" or what he refers to as the shadow.  The shadow represents the rejected aspects of yourself that you do not wish to acknowledge. The shadow is more primitive, somewhat uncultured,  and a little awkward.


Title: Re: Carl Jung Dream Theorist
Post by: Medusa on June 24, 2009, 02:57:31 pm
Do Dreams Predict Future Events?

No, and perhaps. According to Carl Jung dreams compensate the waking mind with information that is unconscious - repressed, hidden or forgotten. His theory is that the dream wants to balance the dreamer's life by providing information that anwsers questions to why things are the way they are in the dreamer's life. As an example, a person who has a sexual addiction most often was physically or mentally abused as a child or young teen and the painful emotions are hidden in the unconscious so they do not have to be dealt with. Although these events may be repressed, they influence the dreamer throughout their life, unless they are confronted and properly dealt with. A purpose of dreams is to bring these repressed emotions to consciousness so a healing can take place. Only then can a person be live a happy and structured life, with a purpose and positive attitude. The unconscious dream compensates the conscious mind with this information using motifs and metaphor. Metaphor is used as the language of the dream because it was the primitive mind's way of communicating, using symbols of people, animals, places, events, and has been inherited by the collective psyche of all humans. These are also what Jung called archetypes.

Predicting the future? Dreams do at times show us insights to possible events in the future. But it is as much a caluation of what the mind and body already knows than a supernatural event. The brain is the ultimate super computer. The body is able to communicate illness and disease through the dream, informing a person well before it is detectable by medical means. There are, and throughtout history have been men and women who were 'good' at seeing future events, but when you deeper into these predictions they are as much a general thought than true predictions of the future. Intuitiveness is a form of knowing, a known quality of the psyche that let's someone sense 'truths' about someone, thing or event. So why not the dream using related aspects to inform, if only in on occassion. The science of dreams {psychology}, through Jung and others, have shown us there are metaphysical qualities to the human psyche. It is probably best to be skeptical, but never dismissive.

Do Dreams Have More Than One Meaning

Jung tells us that dreams do have more than one meaning. This has to do with the personal and collective unconscious, the first having to do with the dreamer's ego life, where those things that have been repressed or rejected from consciousness reside, as well as the discerment of the everyday adventure of the ego {centric} life. The collective unconscious, which is rich in symbol and metaphor, is older than the individual and indeed older than consciousness: it consists of 'the whole spiritual heritage of mankind's evolution born anew in the brainstructure of every individual. They are instinctive much in the way a turtle knows to go to the water when first hatched. The representation of a symbol in the personal unconscious points to the anxieties of everyday life whereas the collective unconscious addresses the deeper sense of who we are, the true self often disguised in the ego-life, a spiritual and creative being that inhabits our psyche. Jung tells us we can not be fully whole until we recognize these 'collective' aspects', confronting the shadow, and make them a part of our everyday lives.

How Are Dreams Structured?

There is no 'one' defining theory of dream structure. But the majority of dreams are composed of four parts or phases, pretty much like ina drama. The dream is very much like your life on stage, and you are the director, actor and witness. Firstly, we need to figure out the scene and time of dream as well as dramatis personae { the actors in a play}. In first phase, which can be regarded as the exposition, the initial situation (setting) is represented already pointing at central conflict expressed in dream. The second phase is the plot and contains something new (essential change), which leads the dream in the third phase: the culmination. In this phase the most critical things happen, which bring the dream to a closure: the fourth phase or denouement. Jung attributed extraordinary significance to the end of dream. The end of dream is so important, Jung held, because we cannot consciously influence on the outcome (i.e. change the end), and dreams so reflect the real situation. "Nature is often obscure or impenetrable, but she is not, like man, deceitful. We must therefore take it that the dream is just what it pretends to be, neither more nor less. If it shows something in a negative light, there is no reason for assuming that it is meant positively."

According to the end of dream, Jung discriminated between favourable and unfavourable dreams. If we were to reverse the well-known proverb, then for dreams we may say that a good end makes a good beginning. Favourable dreams have quieting effect and direct us to the most constructive ways of solving problems. On the contrary, unfavourable dreams contain a warning of, perhaps life important, negative changes. Hence dreams can be said to have a prospective function; they warn us about bright or dark future. Favourable or unfavourable end of dream, however, must not be taken as a final and absolute meaning of dream. This can be done only after several interconnected dreams.

Even though Jung found the structure of dreams as described above, he warned not to take this as literal law. Look at the whole dream [and subsequent dreams] to determine what the dream message is.

Dreams are also an expression of collective generic experiences, which refer to basic life problems and manifest in terms of symbols and myths thoughts and memories shared by all humanity. The interpreter of dreams must therefore be familiar with various myths, religions, cults, rituals and fairy tales in order to fully understand the meaning of dreams. These mythological motifs, which can be found in dreams, Jung called archetypes. Archetypes or primordal images are "specific forms and pictorial relationships, which did not only consistently appear in all ages and in all latitudes, but also appear in individual dreams, fantasies, visions and ideas." This observation led Jung to think that there exists collective unconsciousness the sum of all experiences that human race acquired in its phylogenetic development. The access to collective unconsciousness is particularly easy, when a person has to take an important decision or is in life situation, crucial for his/her personal growth. S/he gets a suggestion from the collective unconsciousness in form of archetypal situation. If that happens in dream, then such dream is called the big dream, which "is expressed in language of universal human experiences, condensed in rich, vivid symbols, in eternal ancient images that overwhelm us completely." Wide knowledge is required when interpreting the big dreams. This knowledge, however, cannot be simply memorized; it can only be an insight into experiences of the person who uses it.

Title: Re: Carl Jung Dream Theorist
Post by: sparrowhawk on December 04, 2009, 09:56:58 am
25 years ago I studied psychology. I was to become a psychologist........but something happened. In the middle of a class 'Personalities and the Individual', I stopped thinking, I looked around the room, and something very deep within arose to the surface. It said "Those around you all need help, they are the ones to be psychologists." I never returned to class again. Something was wrong with that 'ideal'. The 'helpers' pretending to know how to help others yet unable to help themselves. Little did I know at the time I was 'Empathic', could feel the emotion in others. I new it was there but others would always say I was wrong, hell , they got down right violent when you would tell them what they were feeling! The lips moved but that's not what there hearts were saying.  

Carl Jung ..........stuck with me though. Something about everything he said seemed to, well, already be known to be true in me. I still cannot explain it, almost as if I lived that life or somehow downloaded it into my consciousness. Thank-you medusa for bringing a few things I knew but yet did not know that I knew! Ironically I have an old friend I am parting ways with.............he is a psychologist who can't get past the Freudian way of thinking! I can not go backwards and he will not go forward, oh the irony of this life I am experiencing.

I have experienced all of Jung's dream scenarios, they are indeed so.

Great post, thank-you for sharing that....