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Bad Dreams, or Recurring Dreams? Drawing by Catherine MacIntyre The above title may seem odd, if not a complete contradiction. Why would anyone suggest that nightmares or anxiety dreams might be helpful? If you're in the half of the population that has experienced an anxiety dream or nightmare within the last month, then this may even be what you're wishing you could get Dreams from my father of, right?
Some people who had nightmares or recurring dreams early on in life even manage to block their dream recall entirely in order to stop being upset by such experiences. This unfortunate view of "bad" dreams as things to avoid is precisely the reason for the above title and for this article.
An avoidance or denial approach is much like putting a Band-Aid on a car's blinking oil light because the light seems annoying. Of course, fifty or a hundred miles later, it would be greatly preferable to have understood the warning.
Obviously, it's even better not to have the light blinking, but if it does, then it's important to do something about it since it's there for a good reason. One certainly wouldn't be very wise to disable it.
Though perhaps not obvious, the simple fact is that most nightmares and almost all recurring dreams are similarly trying to provide an extremely valuable service to the dreamer. If we block them, we are likely missing their immediate benefit; if we remember but ignore them, we may well be missing the Dreams from my father message that they are trying to bring us about our life.
Almost everyone has experienced one or more dreams that contain anxiety or outright fear.
For some, unpleasant dreams or nightmares recur repeatedly; for others, the content may change while the theme remains the same, such as scenes of falling, or of being pursued or attacked, late or unprepared for a presentation or an exam, stuck in slow motion, unable to move or scream, or naked in public, to name a few common themes.
This type of experience, when unpleasant, is usually associated with lack of progress by the dreamer to recognize and solve related conflicts in life. Though it has been scientifically proven that we all dream every night, fear of nightmares or other anxieties or misguided beliefs about dreams and the unconscious can block dream recall.
This can usually be overcome by learning about the useful nature of dreams and by recognizing that the majority of nightmares, like a bitter but quite necessary medicine, represent opportunities for personal healing through much-needed emotional release.
Sometimes, such imbalances or patterns resolve themselves as the dream percolates into waking thought and we unknowingly respond and make adjustments in our life. These daymares show up as sickness, accidents, relationship difficulties or other unfortunate personal circumstances that force us outright to deal with the issue at hand.
Interestingly enough, such events often have repeating themes as well, such as recurring relationship patterns, for example. Psychologist Ernest Rossi has put forth that one important function of dreaming is integration: Renown psychologist Carl Jung observed that portions of our whole personality which we knowingly or unknowingly judge become disowned, and are frequently projected outward in dreams, taking the form of aggressors, devils, monsters, intimidating animals or natural events e.
Jung referred to these symbolic figures as "the shadow". Whether we become aware of such elements of our shadow through nightmares or daymares, re-accepting these judged and disowned portions of ourselves is the message and the awaiting gift.
The goal is still to put an end to nightmares and recurring dreams, but by evolving them into more beneficial scenarios, and not by blocking, ignoring or denying them.
Resolving Nightmares Fortunately, there exist treatments for nightmares that do not involve medication and which have shown to be very effective.
Some of the most useful techniques include dream rehearsal, dream lucidity, guided imagery and mainstream therapies such as gestalt, psychosynthesis, focusing, or other such methods.
One approach is lucid dreaming where one recognizes during a dream that one is dreaming, hence gaining a degree of conscious control. Swerving into a parking lot, I bolt out of the car and run with him hot on my heels.
Suddenly, the scene seems familiar and I realize that I'm dreaming, though the lot and trees still seem more real than ever. Drawing upon every ounce of courage that I have, I swirl to face my pursuer, repeating to myself that it's only a dream. Still afraid, I scream at him, "You can't hurt me!
For the first time I see his beautiful, loving eyes. I've been running after you all this time to tell you that I love you! I awake filled with energy, feeling great for days.
Following what I learned in the dream, I'm much better at standing my ground and expressing my feelings when needed and appropriate, whereas before I would usually avoid or run from such situations.
The key to such evolution is a change of perspective, often accompanied by a new emotional response to the situation such as taking on an attitude of acceptance, curiosity and exploration to replace the existing reaction of fear or judgment as in the dream example above.
When these types of dream are connected with deep traumatic waking events, such as abuse, war, death, etc. Though there is no unerring rule as to what any given dream might be about, a good rule of thumb is to re-experience the feeling of the dream and find out where this same feeling shows up in our waking life often alluded to by the setting of the dream, though perhaps figuratively.
This is the rule of associative logic - the dream associates to our life, and sometimes to our past, by a specific feeling.
I have no intention of providing an absolute dream dictionary since dreamers and their experiences relating to specific symbols are so individual and have no illusions about prescribing instantaneous solutions or cures, however a great number of people have gotten a lot of help and insight by learning about universal nightmare and anxiety dream themes which they are also experiencing.
Here are some of the most common themes with positive outcome examples for each scenario and suggestions about what the dreamer might look at in waking life: The pursuer usually represents a fearful or disliked aspect of our shadow, and hence an exaggerated version of a denied or inhibited portion of our own personality that would benefit us if integrated and appropriately expressed.About Dreams from My Father.
Nine years before the Senate campaign that made him one of the most influential and compelling voices in American politics, Barack Obama published this lyrical, unsentimental, and powerfully affecting memoir, which became a #1 New .
Jan 31, · Passage: Familiarize yourself with the following passage: Genesis 37 At this point in the life of Jacob, he has 11 sons (Benjamin comes later), only .
But Dreams From My Father is the book that most explains who Obama is. His strengths and weaknesses, which make him so admired by many and feared by his opponents, come out strongly.
Opponents of Obama will find reasons to empathizeReviews: K. Dreams from My Father A Story of Race and Inheritance Barack Obama CROWN PUBLISHERS NEW YORK rutadeltambor.com 11/6/06 PM Page iii.
Dreams from My Real Father is the first cohesive understanding of Obama's deep rooted life journey in socialism, from his childhood to his Presidency. The film makes the case that Barack Obama's real father was Frank Marshall Davis, a Communist Party USA propagandist who likely shaped Obama's world view during his formative years.
Dreams from My Father Homework Help Questions. Describe the major characters in "Dreams from My Father" by Barack Obama. This book is a memoir; the characters are real people.