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    Thread: Identifying with the dream

    1. #1
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      Identifying with the dream

      Hello Dreamviews,

      I was reading up on the Chariot Tarot card. The author's religious views were not compatible with mine but he got me thinking. He described the card in 2 parts. First, a celebration of one's victory. Second, a warning against the danger of identifying as the Hero archetype after which he quoted Jung. Both Jung and the author warned against identifying with our unconscious, or aspects of our unconscious (such as the Hero archetype). Doing so, they say, leads to an inflated ego. I infer identifying with the Child or the Shadow leads to their own issues?

      It was the first time I've been warned against identifying with my unconscious. I thought it was an interesting concept, since as lucid dreamers, part of our ritual is to dissipate the idea of a duality between oneself and the dream. "I am the dream, the dream is me" seems like an appropriate mantra to unlock the ability to be an active participant in the dream.

      What I understood from Jung, though I wouldn't be surprised I was wrong, is to identify only with our consciousness and nurture a sense of duality with our unconscious as well as a sense of "connectedness"... (but not identity). This seems... more grounded in reality?

      During a dream, if someone perceives the dream stimuli as coming from outside of oneself, they're likely to call the dream an astral projection.
      Perceiving the dream stimuli as coming from within describes a dream and potentially a lucid one.
      Is then, identifying with the dream, believing "I" am the dream, not an exaggerated claim? Or is it a lucid thought?

      I was wondering about this dilemma. Is it just philosophy or is there advantages/disadvantages to accepting the dream comes from one's body, yet is not "me" vs identifying with the dream?

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      Sometimes in a lucid dream, the dream does not do what I want it and I get frustrated with it, which leads to me thinking something like, "The dream is me! Why won't it do what I want! Stupid dream!" Note that I want to understand what is happening but the negative judgment is getting in the way of doing that. At this point, it would be better to accept the dream as it comes from my body and drop the judgement to allow me to be more mindful of what is happening.

      I think believing "I" am the dream by is fine as long it doesn't lead to us judging ourselves in a negative way.

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      I may misunderstand Jung, but I'm pretty sure he didn't see the unconscious as something that is not, ultimately, you. Perhaps, during his discussion of dream interpretation, Jung warned against identifying too rigidly with aspects of the unconscious that emerged from dream imagery (because they are simply parts and not the whole, and also might mean something else altogether). This makes sense, because dream interpretation is a decidedly dual process. But in terms of lucid dreaming, where you are present in the dream as it is happening, I have a feeling Jung would have invited you to embrace your unconscious, your entire You. But I could be wrong: we need Darkmatters, I think, for a proper clarification here!

      I tend to think that a non-dual perspective is one that erases archetypes and personas, leaving only an unavoidably honest point of view. You are not identifying with specific archetypes as much as you are coming to terms with their presence and necessity (or unhealthy influence, as it were). Indeed, to do such identifying would be, to me, to be changing one dual perspective for another.

      During a dream, if someone perceives the dream stimuli as coming from outside of oneself, they're likely to call the dream an astral projection.
      Perceiving the dream stimuli as coming from within describes a dream and potentially a lucid one.
      Is then, identifying with the dream, believing "I" am the dream, not an exaggerated claim? Or is it a lucid thought?
      I would go with lucid thought, I think.

      I like the point about a non-dual perspective in a dream leading to an assumption of astral projection; there's probably a lot of that going on. But there is very little difference between that choice and thinking of dreams as coming from within, as if "within" were a different place or source other than you. If you are fully lucid in the dream, understanding that the dream is you is by no means an exaggerated claim; it is merely an observation of the obvious. In fact, in my mind, failure to identify with your unconscious, or seeing it as an "other" of some sort, only diminishes your experience and potentials for exploration.

    4. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by dolphin View Post
      Sometimes in a lucid dream, the dream does not do what I want it and I get frustrated with it, which leads to me thinking something like, "The dream is me! Why won't it do what I want! Stupid dream!" Note that I want to understand what is happening but the negative judgment is getting in the way of doing that. At this point, it would be better to accept the dream as it comes from my body and drop the judgement to allow me to be more mindful of what is happening.

      I think believing "I" am the dream by is fine as long it doesn't lead to us judging ourselves in a negative way.
      Your experience makes me think of someone who's recently lost use of their, let's say, legs. Getting frustrated, saying "those legs are me! Why won't they do what I want! Stupid legs!" I guess dreams are similar to our bodies. They are parts of us with whom we may have a receptive or active role but not always 100%... I think there must be something to say about having a healthy relationship with these, an paradoxical understanding that it is both us and something else at the same time? Like "it needs time" / "I need time" (for my leg to learn how to move, for the dream to form...)

      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      we need Darkmatters, I think, for a proper clarification here!
      Yes, Darkmatters might have already addressed this!

      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      But in terms of lucid dreaming, where you are present in the dream as it is happening, I have a feeling Jung would have invited you to embrace your unconscious, your entire You.
      Yes, that's always intuitively sounded healthy. The book I was reading (which was not by Jung) warned that people who seek to be "profound" and explore deep within themselves risk to identify with those victories too much and become self-obsessed... But I think identifying with your dream, embracing that like you say, does not have to be paired with the burgeoning of a Narcissus Complex. As long as it's balanced by a fascination for what's outside too, I guess.

      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      I like the point about a non-dual perspective in a dream leading to an assumption of astral projection; there's probably a lot of that going on. But there is very little difference between that choice and thinking of dreams as coming from within, as if "within" were a different place or source other than you. If you are fully lucid in the dream, understanding that the dream is you is by no means an exaggerated claim; it is merely an observation of the obvious. In fact, in my mind, failure to identify with your unconscious, or seeing it as an "other" of some sort, only diminishes your experience and potentials for exploration.
      True, if you believe -inside of you- is as detached from you as -outside of you,- it'll be quite a similar experience...
      So now, I wonder, what if in the midst of a dream, you hold the perspective that not only you are so connected to the dream, it is you, but also that you are similarly connected to what is outside of you? As in, every entity in the world is connected, is one. As in, you are yourself a reflection of a bigger whole. Are we again susceptible to perceive our experience as an astral projection maybe?

      Is any realization of connectedness or oneness with the dream an indicator of lucidity or is it a parameter by which you experience the dream: voyage in the collective unconscious, lucid dream, astral projection, meeting with the subconscious...

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      Quote Originally Posted by Occipitalred View Post
      True, if you believe -inside of you- is as detached from you as -outside of you,- it'll be quite a similar experience...
      So now, I wonder, what if in the midst of a dream, you hold the perspective that not only you are so connected to the dream, it is you, but also that you are similarly connected to what is outside of you? As in, every entity in the world is connected, is one. As in, you are yourself a reflection of a bigger whole.
      There it is.
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    6. #6
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      That's a bit of a strange perspective from that author, I feel. I suppose I can see what they mean about a danger of literally identifying as one of the archetypes... But that makes me think of someone who loses their mind and starts taking certain stuff too literally. I wouldn't assume this to be the norm, that people would go about it in such a way.

      Most of what I've read that ties to Jung would have lead me to believe that integrating the subconscious archetypes into the conscious mind is something that, if anything, should be more beneficial than harmful. I have a book on symbology that makes strong reference to the whole Jungian archetype theory and makes for a very interesting read overall. Initially when I acquired that book, I didn't believe it would say anything that would make me think directly about the "self" or even of the dream world, but I ended up feeling that the two subjects ("self" and symbology) are far more interlinked than I'd previously realised on a conscious level.

      I feel there's always a bit of a danger of interpreting things too literally either way but I wouldn't personally hold a belief that it is better or worse to feel that the "I" is also the "dream". From the way I am, I know I can get too stuck in questions like that, so generally I end up trying to take a more pragmatic view; more specifically, I don't necessarily feel that dreams are "me" or that I myself am the "dream" -- I view dreaming as a complex simulated reality, sort of compiled from everything that happens in a person's life.

      Ultimately I figure it doesn't matter how we see dreams in a semantic sense - be that as astral projection or as from some part deep within or whatever - so long as things aren't interpreted too literally.

      And I wanted to quote a few different things from around the thread to reply to more specifically but unfortunately I don't understand how the multiquote function works on DV, so I think I scattered myself a little here...

      Small Edit: I'd just like to add some very brief context on the view I presented on my post, that I have unfortunately had first-hand experience of someone in my life literally losing their mind for a period of time. It's a somewhat frightening experience at first, but it has made me realise over the years that there's a fine line between what reality is and isn't, not to mention that it happens at a level that we might not be able to consciously control or fight off.
      Last edited by DarkestDarkness; 02-06-2020 at 01:56 AM.
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      Singled out from some of my favourite quotes from Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri: "Risks of [Planet] flowering: considerable. But rewards of godhood: who can measure? - Usurper Judaa'Maar: Courage: to question."

    7. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by DarkestDarkness View Post
      And I wanted to quote a few different things from around the thread to reply to more specifically but unfortunately I don't understand how the multiquote function works on DV, so I think I scattered myself a little here...
      Hahaha, it does get cumbersome! If it's too much I guess you can just copy paste text between these prompts: (Quote) and (/Quote) with square brackets [... That's a start anyway

      Quote Originally Posted by DarkestDarkness View Post
      That's a bit of a strange perspective from that author, I feel. I suppose I can see what they mean about a danger of literally identifying as one of the archetypes... But that makes me think of someone who loses their mind and starts taking certain stuff too literally. I wouldn't assume this to be the norm, that people would go about it in such a way.
      Well, I think the author is talking about subtle things... about how a person can become a bit arrogant? Imagine being proud of how at night you are a "god," proud of your lucidity, your self-control, the art of your mind... all invisible successes. I can see how someone would maybe feel under appreciated if their victories cannot be celebrated as other people's are. It's a humbling practice... But I guess Dreamviews is there for that... I remember when this place felt "underground." Is it because LDing became more mainstream that the place feels so empty?

      Well, I would quote the passages but they are in French... Maybe DarkMatter will tell us Jung's view on this.
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    8. #8
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      Quote Originally Posted by Occipitalred View Post
      Hahaha, it does get cumbersome! If it's too much I guess you can just copy paste text between these prompts: (Quote) and (/Quote) with square brackets [... That's a start anyway
      Sometimes I just do this where I quote the whole post and then break up the quote into different blocks. But not sure how to effectively quote different people for the same reply.

      Quote Originally Posted by Occipitalred View Post
      Well, I think the author is talking about subtle things... about how a person can become a bit arrogant? Imagine being proud of how at night you are a "god," proud of your lucidity, your self-control, the art of your mind... all invisible successes. I can see how someone would maybe feel under appreciated if their victories cannot be celebrated as other people's are. It's a humbling practice... But I guess Dreamviews is there for that... I remember when this place felt "underground." Is it because LDing became more mainstream that the place feels so empty?
      To be honest, I wouldn't really know exactly, but I have started seeing LDing comments randomly on some social media type stuff recently... Makes me wonder about a few things. But that's off-topic I guess.

      In any case, I think what you said does make sense. When I was younger I think I might have felt that way a bit, because during my teen years I remembered very very few dreams and my siblings remembered a ton of them. This created an unhealthy jealousy in me for quite some time, but I got over it eventually. All I really wanted was to experience the same sort of things they described. But from that era I did have dreams that now are so deep in my mind that they feel more like memories than dreams, something that at times leaves me a bit uncomfortable because it can take me some time to realise. They were particularly vivid and physically accurate dreams, part of why they are almost memory-like, I suppose.

      But you're right, even just taking an interest in dreaming in general is in my opinion is a humbling practice as you say. Sharing things in a community like this becomes rewarding in itself. Everyone likes to be appreciated after all.
      Occipitalred likes this.
      Singled out from some of my favourite quotes from Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri: "Risks of [Planet] flowering: considerable. But rewards of godhood: who can measure? - Usurper Judaa'Maar: Courage: to question."

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