The Dream and the Dreamer

For years I’ve been interested in dreams. I’ve had recurring dreams, meaningful dreams that I still remember vividly, and dreams that have come true much as I dreamed them. I once dreamed a portion of someone else’s lif and had them verify it.

Dreamer by Quinn McDonald (c) 2008What’s bothered me about dreams is that they seem personal and meaningful, but dream interpretation seems to be a impersonal, reduced to symbol searches. Many books list the items in dreams and assign them a meaning. You dream of flying, it’s a sign someone is going to die. In another book, flying is sex. (In that book, everything is sex. It doesn’t need to be 300 pages long, one would have been plenty.) [Editor’s note: WordPress automatically assigns links to posts based on keywords. Please be careful before clicking on the automatically generated links below this post.]

Another school of thought says that you are everyone in your dream. I’m not sure that works for me, either. Many of the people in my dream are known to me and many unknown that represent an idea or warning for me, but they aren’t me.

I think dreams are far more meaningful, and I don’t believe they are random images your brain fans out because you’ve eaten pepperoni pizza late at night. I believe dreams are a connection to the collective unconscious–the past of your cultural ancestors. I think dreams are a map of our lives, a colorful tapestry of adventures, a guide to the path we have chosen, an illuminated manuscript of both our imagination and our possibilities.

Currently, I’m enrolled in a seminar on dreaming, run by Robert Moss, the originator of active dreaming. Moss believes we can re-enter dreams, either in meditation or in subsequent dreams.

I’m keeping track of all this dreaming for both my dream journaling course and for some workshops on how to wake up to dreams, making them a useful part of your daydreams and waking life.

May 9 update: I had a dream in which I saw a woman who was a potential client in a crowd. She was very blond, almost glowing. The rest of the crowd was very dun-colored, as if a gray wash had been put over the whole scene. She began to bekon to me, but I couldn’t get to her, the crowd was too thick and not moving. [end of dream] I woke up and had this strong urge to email this person. So I did. Two days later she called me and said she had had a job come in, and hadn’t thought of me until she saw my email. I accepted the freelance job. I’m calling this a Quinncidence.

–Image: Dreamer, color pencil, aquarelle pencils on 100-lb. Bristol Board, Quinn McDonald (c) 2008 All rights reserved. This post is also under copyright by Quinn McDonald, who is a workshop developer and leader as well as a certified creativity coach. See her website at