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Saturday, November 3, 2007

Dream Symbols 21: Animals (2) Fleeing From a Pre-Historic Creature

As previously said, animals may have to do with our not-yet explored instinctual (and often sexual) nature. If an animal is furthermore pre-historic, we may have a deeply primordial, chthonic (embedded in the depths) aspect of our psyche on hand. How this plays out, depends, of course, not only on the dream, but also on the dreamer and his or her life and understanding of the self to that point in time.

Imagine a middle-aged man dreaming about standing on a grassy plain. In the distance there are some large rocks, and as he wanders over to them, he is startled by a terrifying pre-historic beast that rushes out from behind the rocks and begins to pursue the man, who is now in dire fear of his life.

As he races in the opposite direction, his strength begins to wane, as the creature moves quickly, and the dreamer now believes it will soon be over. He begins to sense the heat of the animal's breath behind him, as he suddenly sees a young gardener who is watching the scene and who now calmly tells him: don't worry, I'll take care of this for you.

He then takes a garden rake and turning towards the beast, he whops it on its head, and miraculously, this enormous and terrifying animal falls dead to the ground.

Do you see? asks the young gardener. That wasn't so hard at all.

The dreamer can't believe his luck, and wakes with a feeling of great relief.

Assuming this man has been undergoing therapy for some time, and has been in touch with his inner - more instinctual - perhaps even more emotional - self - through the process, and has been hesitant to bring it out into his daily life, to embrace it, so to speak, and begin to weave it into his daily behavior because of the fear of how this might leave him in a vulnerable position, then we might say that the pre-historic creature does indeed symbolize that part of him.

The fact that it is chasing him, threatening death, is precisely what the dreamer fears might happen, figuratively speaking, in real life. And so he runs for his life.

Then the young gardener appears...a symbol for his own, perhaps less worldly and sophisticated self (hence younger), and in the blink of an eye does the unthinkable: he vanquishes the beast. And he furthermore says that it was so easy.

This symbolizes that there is a part of the dreamer that knows how to incorporate the instinctual, perhaps emotional self into the daily life, and the dream is showing the dreamer on a symbolical level, that if he will only embrace it (vanquish it), it will not be terrifying at all.

The next step is, of course, if the dreamer takes notice of this splendid message from his psyche, to blend this new knowledge into his daily life and to stop being afraid of expressing himself freely.

For previous posts in this dream symbolism series, click here.

You may also be interested in viewing some of the recommended dream books and books on symbolism on my website, as well as some of the dream links on my links page.There are also some videos posted about Carl Jung and his take on dreams. Click here to view them.

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