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Understanding Your Dreams
by Ron Masa Ph.D.

Learn many secrets about the inner workings of your mind.  Discover the rules our dreams play by... and see how these rules apply to waking life. Quick easy-to-read outline format.  
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Remembering/recording/interpreting dreams, dream groups, case studies, and suggested readings.

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1. Everyone dreams… every single night of their life. Whoever makes us, makes our dreams. They come from the factory… where we all return each night for a 'retuning' to the vibrations of our essential self.

2. Dreams are filmed live and in person within us. They reveal the objective facts of our subjective (or inner) life; and they do not know how to lie. Dreams are the 'answer sheet' for the 'Know Thyself' exam.

3. Dreamer's choice means the dreamer is always in charge of what to believe, how much personal material to share, and when to stop if they have had enough.

4. Please respect each dreamer's anonymity and privacy outside the group. We need every participant's promise to do so.

5. “All dreams speak a universal language and come in the service of health and wholeness,” in Jeremy Taylor's phrase. They always have healing opportunities in them and they also confirm that you are ready for that growth! Jeremy Taylor's work with dreams is the closest style to our own. We highly recommend all of his books. (Dreamwork, Where People fly…, Labyrinths)

6. Don't believe a thing we say! Believe your own “felt validity.” Dreams are a message from your inner self to your outer (or mildly-conscious) self. When your head gets the message that your heart already knows, you will feel it … intuitively, emotionally and physically. Believe that evidence. Dreams convey both meaning and energy between the worlds: “Every understood dream is like a slight electrical shock into higher consciousness” (von Franz). The dream doesn't want you to believe us; it wants you to believe you.

7. Exploratory Dreamwork invites the entire group to study and wonder about each symbol in a receptive, curious manner until we begin to hear the voice of our own soul . . . This crucial, intuitive link brings up our own personal meaning and insights. Dream symbols are the stimulus for exploration and discovery; they are a starting point. When dreams are marinated in curiosity, they come to life, remind us of things, reveal riddles and insights and memories and humor… they help us adjust our point of view, predict the future, link people in the group together, comment on the dream discussion itself, and bring our deepest truths into everyday life.

8. Explanatory Dreamwork is when someone outside your skin tells you what your dream means. This has its place, but not in our work. Here, each person is the final expert on the meaning of his or her own dream.

9. “If this were my dream...” is Taylor's preface to comments, that politely avoids projecting our meanings onto the dreamer and softens the frankness of feedback. “You” is an accusatory form!

10. “What this dream is saying to me,” acknowledges that Universal symbols speak to everyone who hears them… often in completely personal ways. The universal and the personal meet in dreamwork. EVERBODY'S DREAM IS EVERYBODY'S DREAM. All group insights may apply to you. In one sense, no matter whose dream we work on . . . it is also your dream. You can get your own insights and guidance while you help the dreamer find their meanings.

11. Dreams come from the timeless side of the psyche and are always on time. They will synchronize with everyone in the group, with all other dreams discussed at the same time, and even with events that have not yet happened. Emerson said, “Every man is a doorway through which the Infinite passes into the finite . . .” Dreams are the Doorknob.

12. There are no trivial dreams. Well there was that one in 1956 - No, None. The source of dreams does not know how to be trivial (that's a talent of our ego). “There is no great and small to Him who makes it all” (Blake). We have repeatedly seen one tiny dream fragment, deeply understood, change an entire life direction or self-definition.

13. Dreams always bring new information. They never just repeat what you already know, and since they come from our “unconscious” side, others can usually see many implications hidden from us. So get and give outside help. Dreams invite community. And if you're the Dreamer, after sharing your insights, be sure to listen to others. Try to hear something you don't already know.

14. Dreams are like diamonds. From every different point of view they reveal a new facet of the light. Each symbol has many meanings that are simultaneously true. E.g., every symbol has a light and a dark meaning; an inner and an outer meaning; a physical, a spiritual, an emotional, a mental, a cultural, and an archetypal meaning, etc. (Bet you can't eat just one.) One reason we love group work with dreams is because of the rich diversity of points of view we bring together. So it's not that A or B is true, it's that A and B are true, and C…

15. Dreams are stories from our source. What dream-stories store is meaning, and energy. Dreams arrive like emails from our interior, hyper-linking our conscious mind with the Great Mystery, the invisible source of being. As Muriel Rukeyser put it: “The world is not made of molecules, the world is made of stories.” ('Molecules' is just a creation story.)

16. We get the best results from working with one or two dreams in great depth and applying the results to everyone. Many dreams don't open before 30+ minutes of effort; the attempt to briefly discuss several different dreams during each dream group usually means missing the Magic, entirely. After a session, dream symbols re-congeal an outer layer of opacity and incomprehensibility . . . to seal in those otherworldly flavors (of meaning and energy) that they contain. A day later you may have to patiently unpeel the oniony complexity all over, but some symbols will continue to talk to you and show up for quite some time, if you are open to it.



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Thursdays, 10-11:30 am (Pacific Time). Dr. Ron Masa, Debbie Hart, and Dr. Marjorie Miles lead a safe and supportive live dream group by telephone. All levels of experience welcome. $35 per session OR $125 per month (averages out to $28 per month -- you save 20%!)

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