DREAMS takes you on an exciting journey through the world of your dreams. You will soon be able to remember your dreams, decode your dreams, and use those dreams to your best advantage. Your waking world will be transformed; things will never be the same.
Dreams are real, dreams are personal, and dreams can change your life.
"Cathy has helped unravel my most cryptic dreams. I have been amazed at her suggestions and thought she knew the most intimate workings of my mind. DREAMS reveals her secrets. Well written, with abundant examples, there is something here for every dreamer."
- Joyce Neville, CFO TAD Enterprises, ACBL Silver Life Master
"Dreams are important. Years ago, I dreamt about a stranger and saw him the next day in my waking life. We've been married now for twenty years. I especially like Cathy's book-and I've read many on dreams-because it includes the history of dreams and examples from celebrity dreamers. This information helped me feel comfortable about making dreams a key part of my life."
- Carole Chapman, author of When We Were Gods
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Dreams: Unlocking the Mystery
A How-To Guide that Will Change Your Life
By Cathy Hunsberger
Balboa PressCopyright © 2013 Cathy Hunsberger
All rights reserved.
What's It All About?
"All human beings are also dream beings. Dreaming ties all mankind together." Jack Kerouac.
What are dreams anyway? How do they work? Do they really mean anything? What good are they to me?
These are questions you naturally ask as you approach the dream world. You are curious about the nighttime drama that fills one-third of your life. Dreams can't be just random entertainment, can they?
There are upwards of 7 billion people on this earth. All of these people breathe, eat – and dream. Is this a meaningless coincidence? I don't think so. You are, after all, body, mind, and spirit; these parts of you are intertwined and connected to form a cooperative whole. Leave one of them out and you are incomplete. The dream world speaks to your spirit. The messages it brings are clothed in symbolic language. The subconscious works to bring these messages to you when you are in a sleeping state, when your usual daytime defenses are down, when you can't ignore the information you so desperately need. It is up to you to acknowledge, remember, translate, and use these messages.
So, in answer to your original questions: Dreams are a form of communication – more on that later. They are received via your subconscious while you sleep. Yes, they do mean a lot. They bring messages about your life, relationships, career, creative efforts, and more. These messages, when acted on, can change your life.
You can learn to remember, interpret, and use your dreams. The Talmud tells us, "A dream which is not interpreted is like a letter which is not read." It's time to start opening those letters.
THE DREAM PROCESS
"Pay attention to your dreams – God's angels often speak directly to our hearts when we are asleep." Eileen Elias Freeman.
What Are Dreams?
In sleep, our waking thought processes relax; built-in censorship is dropped. The conscious mind is laid aside, and a natural bridge is formed for communication.
It's like having a cell phone with connections to your subconscious, your superconscious, your guardian angels, arch-angels, deceased loved-ones, the Christ Spirit, the Universe. You have unlimited calling, towers are never down, there are no dead spots, and the line is always clear. Best of all, there is no bill – it's all FREE!
You get advice on life, on relationships, on health. You may get a pat on the back. You may get an elbow in the ribs (usually if you're ignoring your dreams). You receive counseling, explanations, clarification, enlightenment, and advice. Your intuition and creativity are accessed and given a power boost.
This is done for you, personally, individually. It is presented on your cell phone, no one else's, for your eyes and ears only. It is available every night. To everyone. And again, it is free.
Well, almost free. You do have to dial, to listen, and to interpret the message. You then have to USE the message, the information, the knowledge. You have to WANT to use the message, the information, the knowledge.
YOU are the Dreamer
You are the architect of your dreams. You set the stage, you write the script, you direct the action. You then play every part. The dream is all for you. You watch the dream unfold as the privileged audience of one.
The dream then spills over into your waking life. You remember some parts clearly; other parts stay wrapped in fog. You feel an urgent need to write the dream down, to remember, to study, to decode the message of the play. You know the message is especially for you. You know it is important. It holds clues to events currently unfolding in your life. It can give you understanding, enlightenment, hope, insight, guidance. You want to KNOW, to use those valuable kernels of knowledge that the Universe has sent to you.
You start the process. You work with your dreams, with your subconscious, your superconscious, your guardian angels, the Universal forces. Your life begins to take on a certain glow, a strength, a purpose. You ask questions, you receive answers, you take action. Things begin to HAPPEN.
Look into this world of dreams. Learn to use this oh-so-wonderful, valuable tool that is always available. It is a gift. It is free of charge. All you need to do is use it.
"Dreams are nature's answering service – don't forget to pick up your messages once in a while." Sarah Crestinn.
How Do I Begin?
Now is the time. Wait no longer. Receive, digest, write down, interpret, and USE your dreams. Reinvent your world. Come alive!
"But I just can't," I hear you crying. "I never remember my dreams. And I'm so busy." Well, you just "couldn't" learn to ride a bike, to play the piano, to swim, to do fractions. But somehow, you did. You tried, you practiced, you succeeded. You perhaps did not become an Olympic swimmer, or a math major, but you did your best, and you enjoyed your efforts and the results. It's the same with dreams.
You start out small, with baby steps. Soon you have a Dream Journal that is three inches thick, full of beautiful letters from the Universe that have been sent to you, and you alone, for your personal enlightenment and development. Wow!
Once you show you are serious, the mail never stops. Need health advice? You get it. Relationship counseling? Tune right in. A new job? Your dreams will point the way.
Allow me to be your companion on this journey. I will provide tips, hints, and techniques to lead you toward the river that is your inner self, your intuitive self. That river will flow through you, become a part of you, and you will meet it in your dreams. You will begin your journey toward a fuller life.
Ready? Let's get started. You don't want to wait another minute because, after all, dreams are real, dreams are personal, and dreams can change your life.CHAPTER 2
Dreams Throughout History
"History tends to repeat itself." Hegel.
If you think the current preoccupation with dreams is a "New Age" thing, think again. Historical documentation shows that dreams have been prominent in the life of mankind for at least 5,000 years.
Ancient Dream History
Fascination with dreams goes back at least as far as recorded history (approximately 3,500 BC). Dream musings are found from ancient Mesopotamia, ancient Egypt, ancient Greece. Aristotle (384-322 BC) believed dreams related to a dreamer's waking experiences. Early Christians saw dreams as a time when the body and spirit were connected.
The practice of dream incubation, or programming (asking for a dream on a particular topic/problem), was active in many ancient cultures, including those of the Egyptians, Babylonians, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Greeks. This technique was also used by tribes of Native Americans and peoples in the Himalayas, China, and Japan. Dreamers would petition the gods for a dream that would provide answers to a particularly knotty problem. A dream might be requested for spiritual insight or personal health. The dreamer would follow a ritual, which might include the use of fasting, prayer, dancing, even drugs. He would then sleep near a sacred place or object, perhaps a temple or natural landmark associated with divine power.
The Senoi of Malaysia are thought to have arrived from southern Thailand about 4,500 years ago. The Senoi believed that dreamers should confront and conquer dream danger, advance toward dream pleasure, and achieve a positive outcome. They learned to program their dreams, to shape them by suggestion, and to work in a lucid dreaming state (which is being consciously aware, while asleep, that you are dreaming). In modern times, they still share dreams, discussing them at breakfast with the family. Later, an individual might continue this sharing process with friends or colleagues.
Ancient Dream Beliefs
Ancient Egyptians believed that dreams were communications from the gods. Dreams were so valued that Egyptians priests formulated spells to generate dreams. One known spell instructed the potential dreamer to draw the god Besa in ink on his left hand. Before going to bed, the hand was to be wrapped in black cloth. The dreamer had to maintain complete silence prior to sleeping. In addition, the dreamer had to write a petition for the dream by the light of the setting sun. The petition (or prayer) asking for a specific dream, and the silence before sleeping, are part of techniques used even today to incubate dreams.
The Greeks and Romans taught that some dreams could be genuine visions, while others were about everyday life. The soothsayer Artemidorus (2nd century AD) wrote that dreams used symbols and events that were allegorical – they expressed truths or generalizations about human existence.
The ancient Chinese were of the conviction that everyone has two souls - one connected with the body and one connected with the spirit. The spiritual soul was the one involved in dreams. Each night it left the body to communicate with other spirits, bringing back messages. The spiritual soul needed time to return to the body, so family members never woke a person abruptly. Even in modern times, in some regions of China, alarms clocks are regarded as potentially dangerous.
Prophetic dreams are frequently portrayed in the Bible, using visual metaphors, angelic messengers, and the voice of God Himself.
It seems that whatever the age or culture, humans have always recognized that dreams are real, that dreams are personal, and that dreams can change your life.
Modern Dream History
"We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive." Albert Einstein.
Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) - Freud did not come up with anything the ancients had not already theorized about or addressed, except for his fixation on sex. He managed to convince the public that dreams seem strange because they are disguised messages about sex. The messages have to be disguised, he advised, because otherwise they would frighten us. An internal censor thus rewrites our thoughts using symbols, which only highly trained psychoanalysts can clear up (for a fee of course). In fact, he had a pretty good thing going there. What a great marketing device – Sex, Sex, Sex. Who wouldn't want to discover what their dreams revealed to them about their covert thoughts on sex?
Carl Jung (1875-1961) - Freud's theoretical opponent was Swiss psychologist Carl Jung. Jung believed that dreams were natural events. He saw a dream as one's unconscious speaking in its natural language, which relies less on words and more on symbols. Some of these symbols, he believed, are universal, found in folklore and religion around the world. For example, Jung believed the circle was often a symbol of wholeness and balance, as shown in much Asian art.
Jung also believed that dreams are personal and should be interpreted by the individual (at no cost!). He felt that dreams express concrete concerns or problems and give possible solutions. Jung also thought that historical or mythical figures can best be understood as expressing some aspect of oneself. Thus, because dreams are personal, they can be used by the individual to spur insight and personal growth.
Today many dream theorists echo Jung's conception of dreams as potentially creative and liberating, although they don't necessarily give a lot of credence to his "universal archetypes" – symbols with similar meanings to all dreamers. A very personal interpretation of dream symbols, according to one's own experiences and beliefs, is generally preferred.
So for those of you who have thought of dream work as a modern device, you can now appreciate that dreams have been a focus of mankind throughout the ages.
We come, once again, full circle, to the premise that dreams are real, dreams are personal, and dreams can change your life. This has been echoed throughout history, with variations on a theme, and using multiple techniques, but always sending the same essential message.
Sometimes we have to look back to look forward. As Shawn Purvis tells us, "The light of starry dreams can only be seen once we escape the blinding cities of disbelief."CHAPTER 3
"Yet it is in our idleness, in our dreams, that the submerged truth sometimes comes to the top." Virginia Woolf.
Do you sometimes ask yourself, "Are my dreams truly real? Am I just imagining things? Is there any evidence beyond my own little world that this isn't just pie in the sky?"
It can help to know that there is a lot of evidence for the validity of the dream world, not only from your next door neighbor, but from celebrated persons in history. Here are a few reports from Presidents, famous authors, even a pro-golfer:
President Lincoln (1809-1865) dreamt of his own assassination.
In his dream Lincoln found himself lying in his bed in the White House, listening to a deathlike stillness, which was soon broken by the sounds of weeping in the rooms below. Leaving his bed, Lincoln wandered from room to room, unable to find who was crying. The entire White House seemed deserted, but the sound continued.
Puzzled and alarmed, the dreamer continued until he came to the East Room. With a shock, he realized he had stumbled upon a service for the dead. Before him lay a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Soldiers stood on guard; the sobbing came from a throng of mourners gathered round. "Who," Lincoln demanded of one of the soldiers, "is dead?" "The President," the soldier answered – "killed by an assassin."
Just then the crowd's grief grew more excessive, startling Lincoln awake. For the rest of the night he could not sleep, but lay in his bed, worried and haunted by his vision.
Upon waking, Lincoln reported this dream to his closest friend and unofficial personal body guard, Ward H. Lamon, who promptly wrote it down. He also told it to his wife, who became quite distraught. Lincoln, however, was determined to go about business as usual. Less than a week later, he was dead.
Some dreams can heal. Stewart Alsop (1914-1974), a well-known political columnist, was battling cancer. It was spreading; his chances didn't look good.
One night he dreamed he was alone at night on a train, which was about to stop at Baltimore. When it did, Alsop looked out through the door at what he presumed was the Baltimore station - deserted, dimly lit, creepily silent. As silent as death. "We won't stop here," Alsop announced loudly to whoever was in charge of the train and the dream. "Start up the train, and carry on." The next day, for the first time, Alsop's x-rays looked better. The cancer had mysteriously begun to recede. He went back to work not long after.
It seems clear the dream showed the projected end of his journey; however Alsop decided to change that destination. He made the decision to live. And so it was.
"There are mysteries," Alsop wrote later about his dream, "above all the mystery of the relationship of mind and body, that will never by explained, not by the most brilliant doctors, the wisest of scientists or philosophers."
Pro golfer Jack Nicklaus (1940-) was suffering through a prolonged slump. He went to sleep frustrated, agonizing over what was going wrong.
A dream showed him performing a perfect stroke, using an entirely different grip.
"When I came to the course yesterday morning," Nicklaus told a newspaper reporter, "I tried it the way I did in my dream, and it worked ... I feel kind of foolish admitting it, but it really happened in a dream."
Nicklaus' scores immediately improved.
The author of Frankenstein, Mary Shelley (1797-1851) first glimpsed her horrific creation in a dream. In the summer of 1816, she and her husband were staying with friends at the Villa Deodati on the shores of Lake Geneva, Switzerland. After an evening exchanging ghost stories, the host suggested that each of the group write a horror story of their own. Marry Shelley went to bed and had a terrifying nightmare.
"My imagination, unbidden, possessed and guided me," she later wrote, "gifting the successive images that arose in my mind with a vividness far beyond the usual bounds of reveries ... I saw the pale student of unhallowed arts kneeling beside the thing he had put together – I saw the hideous phantasm of a man stretched out, and then, on the working of some powerful engine, show signs of life, and stir with an uneasy, half-vital motion."
Upon waking, she excitedly realized she had her story. She knew, "What terrified me will terrify others; and I need only describe the spectre which had haunted my midnight pillow."
President Lyndon B. Johnson
President Johnson (1908-1973) often dreamed of the difficulties he was struggling through.
Excerpted from Dreams: Unlocking the Mystery by Cathy Hunsberger. Copyright © 2013 Cathy Hunsberger. Excerpted by permission of Balboa Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents
ContentsThank You!, xv,
Chapter 1 What's It All About?, 1,
Chapter 2 Dreams Throughout History, 7,
Chapter 3 Famous Dreamers, 13,
Chapter 4 What In The World?, 21,
Chapter 5 Remember Me?, 99,
Chapter 6 Your Dream Journal, 117,
Chapter 7 Putting It All Together, 127,
Chapter 8 Mr. Dream Man, Bring Me A Dream, 181,
Chapter 9 Follow Your Dreams, 189,