Robert Johnson, Joyce Rockwood Hudson: Dreams Again
“If we go to that realm (the inner life or unconscious) consciously, it is by our inner work: our prayers, meditations, dreams work, ceremonies, and Active Imagination. If we try to ignore the inner world, as most of us do, the unconscious will find its way into our lives through pathology: our psychosomatic symptoms, compulsions, depressions, and neuroses.”Robert Johnson, p. 11, Inner Work, Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth, Harper&Row 1989.
My spiritual director best helps me and others connect with God through dreams. Dreams are certainly one way that God, the dream maker, speaks to us. Working with our dreams is like studying a new language. It is the symbolic language of the unconscious. We connect to the unconscious with dreams, imagination, and incidents of synchronicity or coincidences or serendipity.
We study our dreams learning about personal symbols that may be specific to us like sea and trees for me. There are collective symbols which may be universal, such as water representing the unconscious, light being our consciousness, a child being the creative part of us, animals representing instincts, vehicles representing energy or how we get along with a car representing our independent energy and buses, planes, trains being collective energy.
Dreams also speak in the language of mythology, fairytales, religious rituals, music.
Consider learning about dream work as a spiritual practice. Join a dream group, for the gold in dreams can be so much richer with the help of others. Two books to start with to learn more about dream work are Inner Work: Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth. by Jungian analyst, Robert Johnson, and Natural Spirituality: A Handbook for Jungian Inner Work in Spiritual Community by Joyce Rockwood Hudson. Both are also good books to read together in a group.
If this spiritual discipline interests you, just start by keeping an electronic or old fashion notebook by your bed and write down your dreams as soon as you awaken, and see what happens!