Carl Jung argues that dreams are ways our subconscious self attempts to articulate and reveal parts of ourselves that we keep buried (often away from our conscious self). Dreams are symbols, reflecting different aspects of ourselves that may not be readily seen if we are taking the dream at face value.
I usually never remember my dreams. Before I didn’t really care for dream analysis and would frequently take the “scientific” approach to understanding why dreams occur: “They only come about because of the neurons firing in our head; we’re organizing information within our memory as we sleep and dreams are just a byproduct of that.” But lately, I have been remembering the dreams I’ve been having. I have been having dreams about someone in particular, including last night. Waking up this morning, it almost felt as if I had been living in a different life or different consciousness within my dreams… and those residual feelings from that different consciousness were with me when I woke up in Reality. As is my habit, I went straight into analytical mode: Do these dreams mean something? What are these feelings I have? Why do I keep seeing you in my Dream life, so different from the Reality that I know? Why do I feel so vindicated, as if this was some sort of catharsis?
I took to my books, textbooks, the internet, anything to give me some clarity. Taking heed of all the theories/understandings of dreams I had, I sat down and asked myself: What is the theme of these dreams? What do they say about me or a part of me? And it was by asking these questions and taking my dreams apart that my mind was blown. I came to realize the parts of myself I never paid attention to, or even clearly tried to disconnect from in my Conscious life. It was as if my Subconscious Self wanted to process something that I have been failing to do in my Consciousness, and urging me to see those parts I fight to ignore in my waking life.
By the end of my self dream analysis, I was left with an odd feeling. By remembering my dreams, my reality shifted drastically. It was as if I was staring at myself in the mirror and noticing things about myself I never even saw before. Maybe dreams are just a product of random neurons firing in our heads, but if Carl Jung is right, then my Subconscious Self sent me a very moving message. It makes me wonder of all those dreams I cannot remember, those messages my subconscious may have been trying to give but I could never recall. Looking at these parts of myself now, I feel more vulnerable and bare. Perhaps before, fear was masking my eyes from seeing entirely. But now that I am beginning to see, I am realizing how fear ties us down and keeps us blind… and how facing our true, real and entire selves frees and opens us to a new, authentic way of being.