Archive for the ‘Recollections and memories’ Category

Dreams Part 4: Dreams can be literal and metaphorical.


Dreams can be literal.

 Example 1:   The dryer burst in to flames.

Once I bought a new clothes dryer.  About a week after I bought it, I dreamed that it burst into flames.  I woke up with a start.  I instantly knew what the dream was about.  The filter on the new dryer was in a different place and I had forgotten to clean it.  “Bursting into flames”  was my fear of what I believed could happen.  The dream was simply my mind’s way of reminding me to clean the filter.

In many cases of interpreting dreams you need to consider several factors.

It is possible to detect malfunctions in machines and vehicles through your senses, such as sight, hearing, smell, and touch.  Because we live busy lives we may not be aware consciously that we picked up information, yet our dreams may let us know while we sleep.

 Example 2:  I am driving up a steep hill and at the top of the hill the engine falls out of the car.  Nothing else happens, no accident, no one is hurt.

When I woke up, I remembered sitting in my car the night before, waiting for my son to come out of his karate class.  While waiting, I was off in my mind thinking about lots of things.  The weather was cold and I remember seeing steam rising up from the hood of the car.  So when I next drove my car, I looked at the engine gauge. The engine was getting too hot too fast.  I took it to the garage and learned there was a hole in a hose.

Dreams can be Metaphors:

Example 1: Marlene dreamed that two of her co-workers were in bed together.

During work, Marlene had detected something was going on between two of her co-workers but she did not register it consciously.  Their connection with each other came to her at night in her dream.

Their being in bed together could mean they are sexually involved with each other and keeping it secret, or it could mean they are conspiring with each other about work and it has nothing to do with sex.  Being in bed together can be a metaphor for secretly allying with each other in the work (or other) situation.

Now that this has been brought to Marlene’s attention, she can figure out consciously whether their alliance is sexual or conspiratorial.

 Example 2:  My good friend from university was pregnant.

Many years ago, before I had children, I had this dream.  Curious, I decided to phone her and catch up with her.  It turns out she was, in fact, pregnant.  I could not have known about it, as I had not had any contact with her for several years.  She lived in Eastern Canada and I lived on the West Coast.

When we dream about people from the past what it means depends on whether that person is in our life currently or not.  If they are, the meaning may be about the real person.  When they are not in your current life, it means they represent something to you.

My friend was married in university, had had one child and got pregnant with her second child when I knew her.  While the dream was about her, I believe the dream stemmed more from my own strong desire at the time to have children of my own.  Dreaming that she was pregnant, and it turning out to be true, was probably more a coincidence than intuition.  She represented fertility and family to me, which I longed for myself at the time.

People too often take dreams literally when they are metaphors for what is going on in one’s current life.  While they may be literal, consider the possibility they may be metaphorical or symbolic when interpreting your dreams.


With care and concern,


Dr. Bea









How to Decode an Early Recollection to find the Message for How to Live Life.

The reason we have the memories that we remember is because they provide us with a message. As discussed in How to talk about the past, memories are blue prints for how to do life.

In order to figure out the message you need to know how to decode the memory.

Here is an Early Recollection:


I remember the strap that my father had. It was an ugly looking Tractor belt – wide and long. When one of the four of us “got the strap”, all four of us cried! That was our revenge! One afternoon when our parents were not home, my older sister and I decided to get rid of the strap once and for all. We got a spade, and some other digging tools from the garage, and dug a “BIG” hole at the very back of our large vegetable garden. We buried the strap!  It was never seen again!

Many, many years later, we did tell our parents what happened to the strap. Fortunately by then we could all have a good laugh.

Were the siblings participants or observers?

In this memory the two eldest were participants.  They weren’t just observing what was going on.

Were the siblings active or passive?

The two eldest were active.  They took action to deal with the problem.

The others were active when they all cried together.  Otherwise, they were either passive or not involved.

What was the quality of the relationship between the siblings?

They stuck together.

The two eldest took charge. They worked together as a team and acted for the good of all.  Together, they figured out what to do, when to do it, what they needed to do it, and then they carried it out.

What was the outcome – positive, negative or neutral?

What they did worked.  There were no bad consequences as a result of what they did.

The message this memory gives for how to live life:

When you have a problem in life that is affecting you and others, do something about it.  Stick together. Find one other person [or more] to help you deal with it.  Work together to find a solution that is good for all.  Plan it, get the right tools and execute it.  There likely will be no negative consequences.

What a positive recommendation for how to handle difficulties in life!

With care and concern,

Dr. Bea