It was my second night back from the retreat at Joshua Tree, California, USA. I had a very restless night, and didn’t sleep well. I often have dreams where I don’t think I’m dreaming, but upon awakening realize that I was. This was one of those nights.
I was back at the retreat center, which is surrounded with scenes like in this photo. It’s very dry and there’s lots of sand everywhere. In my dream, the low, ground hugging outline of the Joshua Tree Retreat Center turned into a white wooden building, with big picture windows and a wrap around veranda like I know from growing up in the South. Outside there was a parking lot made of black sand, unlike the actual beige sand where I had been in the desert. A spit of this black sandy land went out into a large pond that was covered in green algae, a common water plant back here in the East of the USA, especially where run-off from the rain carries yard fertilizer into a body of water. I could quickly see that there were a number of small, thin alligators in the water. They were much thinner than I know back East, and were a pale brown-beige color, unlike the real dark brownish-black ones that I know. I debated whether they were alligators or crocodiles, which have a much thinner snout, decided they were alligators, and went back to the steps of the house where an old man with very white hair was sitting. I started to ask him about the alligators. He began to tell me something important about them, and at that point, I woke up.
“OK, what was that about?” I thought. Usually I can interpret my own dream language upon awakening, butt his one was a puzzlement to me. I teach my clients that there are tons of books out there on dream symbols, but it’s what does the dream mean to the individual that’s important. Usually, even if I get what a dream means for a client, I wait for them to figure it out for themselves, as dream interpretation is an important skill set to develop. My take is that our dreams are our attempts to tell us what’s going on in our unconscious minds that we don’t want to face in the conscious mind. What can make it difficult, is that often, the imagery is very unique to each individual, and is not a direct word for word explanation of what’s going on in a person’s life. I get that I don’t feel particularly safe right now, as alligators, for me, aren’t very friendly creatures. They were also hidden by the green algae and I had to look hard to see that I was surrounded by them, so that I imagine that the dream is trying to tell me that there are hidden fears I’m not willing to face. Those, for me, are the obvious interpretations, yet I get that there’s a lot more below the surface, waiting to percolate to the surface.
So, I’ll sit and wait for “my” meaning to come through. The longest I’ve ever had to wait for something to be revealed to me was a year, and that was because a lot of healing on seemingly unrelated issues needed to take place. I’m doing what I can to keep what I think is going on with the alligators in the forefront, and will continue to open myself up to the Divine for healing and strength.
What are some of the insights that you’ve gained from your dreams? Do you even remember your dreams upon awakening, and if not, what do you think might be holding you back from remembering them?
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