Category Archives: Dreaming Musings

7,000 DREAMS

I dream a lot.  When I was in graduate school, I was required to be in therapy, because I was seeing clients.  Because I thought it would be interesting I chose a Jungian Analyst.  He suggested, I pick up a dream journal to remember my dreams.  The first entry was September 8, 1991.  I’m on about my fifth journal and it’s always around, reminding me that a current flows beneath the ground of my usual awareness.  The other day, I was doing an Astrology reading for someone and the subject of dreams came up.  I told them how I had recorded 7,000 dreams.  “What have you learned?” My client asked.  Good question. The first thing that I’ve learned because of the “find” capability in most word processing programs is that the dream I had last night, often is related to a whole series of dreams I have had over the years.  For instance, I have discovered on numerous occasions that what seemed like a stand alone dream was actually a link in a dream chain. Or a piece of an emerging fractal.   I’ve woken up after dreaming I was doing something in Chicago, to discover that I had 26 other unremembered dreams over the years about Chicago that were thematically and emotionally related.  Chicago is a “location” in my dream state.  If I am dreaming about being in Chicago, I am dreaming about being in some part of myself, that I return to over and over again.  And usually the dreams are progressive, showing that my relationship with that location is evolving.  I’ve actually come to think that the “location” of Chicago isn’t really Chicago at all.  It’s a location outside of space of time that I perceive to be Chicago like.  I often feel the work of the dream is to tease out the symbolic representation that a place or person is to me.  So to me, Chicago is the capital of the Midwest.  The city at the center.  So, when I am in “Chicago” I am dreaming of the man made structures built around my center.  Likewise, I often dream of people both famous, and not.  I will discover the same pattern of a dream about a person being a single link in a chain.  This is especially delightful when I wake up thinking, “It’s strange I dreamed of that person,” only to discover I have done it many times before.  One of the things I have learned whether the person be a public figure, or an acquaintance, that the dream is rarely about that person.  If for instance I dream of a famous person, I actually realize it’s not really a famous person that I am dreaming of, but a part of myself that my dream ego misperceives as that particular person.  So the work is never to go, “Oh, I dreamed of so and so, famous or not, the work is to tease out who that particular person is in me, that my dream ego misunderstands as having enough of the traits of a particular person, to be them.  My dream ego connects the dots of a a character, and my job is to look directly at the dots which are usually parts of myself that I am not presently in relationship with.  The amazing things about dreams is that they are NEVER telling you something you already know.  They are communicating to your ego from the primordial ground of being, presenting you with a message about how it views a particular part of you.  So the quick answer, “I’m in Chicago, or “So and so is angry at me,” isn’t what the dream is about, it’s just the beginning of a conversation between you and the Primordial about not presently understood parts of yourself.  Parts of yourself that you are usually screening out, because they don’t fit into your current self concept, or even the self concept you’ve held your whole life.  The self concept or Ego(both east and west) is something that has been formed in response to your initial environment, to cope with other people, and to make the timeless, spaceless parts of yourself, feel safe where it finds itself.  There is no ultimate reality in an ego, it’s a construct, and it’s a construct that efficacy of, your dreams comment on nightly.  You should take what they are saying seriously.



Most difficulties a person experiences can be attributed to the places where the architecture of the ego separates them from the origins of their consciousness. These origins are neither historical, nor biographical. The ego, is an instinctual, reflexive structure, created to cope with one’s environment from birth. It is like a callus formed against the challenges of life. (I’ve seen in Astrology Charts that it also may be a momentum of consciousness that one brings into life and creates their perceptions and experiences) There is nothing eternal in its structure though, though its origins are eternal. It exists in the realm of personal history and biography, and often camoflages and alienates awareness from its eternal origins. Mysticism is the capacity is to turn off the ego’s filtering ability and allow it to perceive things its conditioning won’t allow. A large part of consciousness exists outside of time, place, location or historical biography. If the structure of the ego does not allow access to these non biographical, eternal aspects of consciousness, it will calcify, struggle, and create dis-ease.

So how does the consciousness that animates the entire universe make itself known to the individual? How does the energy behind the big bang make its’ way into the awareness of the individual ego? First and foremost, through dreams. Dreams happen for one reason, and one reason only; to make the ego aware of elements of consciousness that exist outside its awareness. Every dream you have ever had, or anyone has ever had, occurred for one reason: To make the ego aware of things that are beyond its conditioned purview. Whenever anyone has a dream, it occurs because something is being presented that the ego doesn’t presently understand about its relationship to its origins. That’s one of the reasons why the meanings of dreams are so elusive. They cannot be simply understood by the ego, because they are a message about something the ego doesn’t presently understand about itself or its circumstances.. So the ego has to travel beyond its known boundaries of understanding to harvest meaning. When the ego reduces a dream to something that is already understood, it kills the intent of the dream. Threatened, it senses it is being informed of its incomplete understanding, and it rejects the process by claiming to understand. The ego has admit that without work and without sacrifice of its dominant paradigm, it will never understand the meaning of a dream.

Each one of us is animated by the same energies that went into forming the entire universe, both in its physical and non physical manifestations. Our ego is a like a light bulb in a dark room(that dark room is our lives), and the creative energy that animates that light bulb and creates the “light” of awareness is what allows the ego, (and in this analogy the light bulb) to make out the details of the room in which it finds itself(which is this life). If the light bulb looks around the room and starts thinking, “I like that window, I don’t like that chair, I wish the room was bigger,” it starts to wander from its origins and may even forget them. As the ego identifies more and more with what it illuminates, and less and less with the source of energy that animates it, limits itself and lose its potential. When an ego reacts only to its own creations, it moves further and further from the nutritive ground of its origins. The field of consciousness from which all awareness springs extends from a time before organic biological life began and extends far beyond when it ends. That same field is interwoven into this very life. You cannot fall out of the field being born, and you cannot fall out of the field after death.

It is this field that speaks to you in dreams. Sometimes it speaks from a farther, more impersonal distance, sometimes from a closer personal perspective. Its attention may sometimes be taken by other events, but it always is aware of you, and has a concern for your development and evolution. It speaks in ancient primordial language of images and feelings that are often foreign. But you can learn to speak its language, and the more you learn it, the more it will speak to you. I have over the years(and after recording 7,300 dreams) developed a worksheet that can help translate this language. If you are interested, let me know. I will send it to you. With or without it, this is always a phenomenal conversation to be having.



    Abraham Lincoln is generally considered the greatest American President.  He’s placed above all others because of the challenges he faced during his presidency, and the wisdom and leadership he demonstrated in response to those challenges. But one thing he generally isn’t remembered for is the importance he placed on his dreams.  Throughout his life, and often during his Presidency, he discussed his dreams with those around him.  He did not discriminate about who he shared these discussions with,  and spoke about his dreams to his wife, his friends, his cabinet members, and even the generals of the Union Army.

      Lincoln often began his cabinet meetings with discussions of his dreams from the previous night.  His captive audience viewed this as an eccentric aspect of his folksy manner.  His generals also had no choice but to tolerate his sharing. On several occasions, he informed Ulysses S. Grant(who himself would one day be President)  that good news was coming from the battlefields because the night previous he had dreamed about a ship steaming through the water at high speeds, and that reoccurring dream often was the harbinger of good news.

    It is two of the last dreams of Lincoln’s life that I’ve always found the most fascinating.  The first was told to his cabinet.  Lincoln reported that during his life he had often dreamed of being on a Clipper ship out at sea on a journey between two lands.  Progress had always been hard to measure because the ship had always been on the sea with no land in sight.  But several days before he died, he excitedly announced that in the dream of the night before the ship had reached land.  The second dream was told to his wife and a couple of friends three days before his death. One of whom, Ward Hill Lamon spoke of it frequently after his death.

     “About ten days ago, I retired very late. I had been up waiting for important dispatches from the front. I could not have been long in bed when I fell into a slumber, for I was weary. I soon began to dream. There seemed to be a death-like stillness about me. Then I heard subdued sobs, as if a number of people were weeping. I thought I left my bed and wandered downstairs. There the silence was broken by the same pitiful sobbing, but the mourners were invisible. I went from room to room; no living person was in sight, but the same mournful sounds of distress met me as I passed along. I saw light in all the rooms; every object was familiar to me; but where were all the people who were grieving as if their hearts would break? I was puzzled and alarmed. What could be the meaning of all this? Determined to find the cause of a state of things so mysterious and so shocking, I kept on until I arrived at the East Room, which I entered. There I met with a sickening surprise. Before me was a catafalque, on which rested a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Around it were stationed soldiers who were acting as guards; and there was a throng of people, gazing mournfully upon the corpse, whose face was covered, others weeping pitifully. ‘Who is dead in the White House?’ I demanded of one of the soldiers, ‘The President,’ was his answer; ‘he was killed by an assassin.’ Then came a loud burst of grief from the crowd, which woke me from my dream. I slept no more that night; and although it was only a dream, I have been strangely annoyed by it ever since.”


  I’ve been sitting with a lot of people in Astrology Sessions lately.  A close friend of mine asked if it was confusing sitting with all sorts of different people, talking about all kinds of different charts.  I thought about it for a moment and realized, I don’t ever feel that way.  The way I described it to my friend was that each person’s chart is like a unique stained glass design.  It’s like wandering through unending cathedrals, seeing unique stained glass designs, styles, colors, techniques and inspirations.  I don’t ever feel anything but amazed that you can talk to someone for two hours about their life while sitting with them and their Astrology Chart.  As I responded to the question, using the metaphor of “stained glass,”  it reminded me of a dream I recorded over a quarter century ago, that I think is share worthy.  I’ve recorded 7,000 dreams over the last 26 years or so, but this was one of the first.

16     1/1/92  I am at a blues club in Los Angeles.  I see a band playing and the singer is obviously a bearded Jim Morrison.  He does nothing to hide this, and nobody is all that excited about him being there, despite him being dead.  I wonder, “Am I in 1971?”   I return another time and he is clean shaven and bright blue eyed.  There is a newspaper report on the wall about Jim Morrison playing at the club, but there is no mention made of how strange an occurrence this is even though he has been dead for twenty years(now close to fifty)  I watch the show thinking about the implications of his being alive, or wondering if in fact, I am also dead.   The show ends.  I try to find my way out of the incredibly large complex that the Blues Club is is located in the basement of.  Finally I find my way out through a stairwell, but when I get outside, I realize I am not in Los Angeles, but in a neighborhood in New York City with which I am totally unfamiliar.  I walk and walk, hoping to find a familiar street name.  I become aware that I am in an African American Neighborhood where the inhabitants are about to riot about something that is most likely racial.  I feel threatened and think that I should probably find a safer place to be.  A young man on a bike tells me in a German accent that I should be in a movie theater.  That idea doesn’t appeal to me.  He says if I want to get to the train station to escape New York, I should follow the tower at Grand Central Station that is many blocks away.  I look up to see an immense tower with the stained glass from Chartres Cathedral at the top of it.   A bright light shines behind it, shining its’ colors across the city to me.  I follow it knowing as long as I keep heading in that direction, and keep the stained glass in my sights, I will be safe.

     Now, I’ll leave it to the reader to decide what this dream is really about.  But, I will say that at times my life has been chaotic, and at times it still is, but I have always been able to ground myself in the moment knowing that I am headed toward and keeping my eye on the “Stained Glass,” whatever ineffable experience it symbolizes.  As each person I read for reveals themselves through their unique arrangement of consciousness, I’ve found myself feeling that it is all one consciousness that comes in an unending variety of forms and asks the same questions through many prisms of light, color, memory, identity and emotion.   “Where am I from? Where am I going? Am I going to be okay?  Will there be others who love me when I get there?” I think the answer to all these questions, no matter how they are phrased, is an unequivocal, “Yes.”