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    1. #1
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      Haunting Ghost Dreams

      About me: To begin with, I'm 25yrs/female and likes to daydream a lot. I don't like to be in a relationship (sometimes even platonic ones) and I have an issue in being close with someone. I think it's tiring and dangerous. Work is fine as it can be like that feeling you get when you're riding a train or walking a well passed street.

      Dreams: I can't pinpoint a momentous time when my ghost dreams started, but it happened a couple of times for the past 6 to 7 years? It always started with the desperation of fleeing from the ghost. I've never seen it, I just always felt it like I know when it was there. Looking at me and following me all around. For some reason, I know when it's male or female and I kept getting lost trying to get away from it. Sometimes I don't run far enough to escape and sometimes even if I felt like I did, it always caught up. By that time, I wake up feeling terribly scared and confusingly sad. An overwhelming pair of emotions for me. It felt so heavy that I fall asleep right away. I don't obsess in thinking about it but it will crop up from time to time.

      The plot has always been the same just different scenarios. Except last week when a face imprinted itself in my memory. Not sure how reliable my memories are but this dream started unlike my previous ghost dreams. It's setting was in a university? It did not look like the school I went to but I get the feeling that it is a university. I was late for something and I was really desperate to find a shortcut. One of my 'faceless friends' pointed to a red brick building and told me that if I go through there, I will be on time. I hesitated. I told her I don't wanna go because I know it is dark and long and damp and I was afraid that there might be a ghost. My friend then told me not to worry, she got permission from the head office to turn on the lights. I'm still hesistant, but I don't want to be late. Slowly, I entered the building and inside there was a single bulb lit. Underneathe it was a guard and he encouragingly smiled at me then flipped the main switch. The lights turned on, dim and some flickering. But it did it's job, it lit a long hallway with a series of doors on each side. The walls are dirty as well as the floor. Some doors were off their hinges. I don't remember the entirety of my time in the building but the next thing I knew, I exited a room and ended up in the final hallway. Looking to the right, I saw the exit, bright and hopeful. But then, from the brightness a figure emerged. I knew then that it was a ghost.

      It looked exactly like me except her eyes are wide and red. Veins are very prominent on her face and I could see the blood flowing within. I was rooted on the spot, scared and unable to breathe. She paused for a moment as if assessing. Then suddenly she ran fast towards me in a crouch like manner like an animal chasing its prey. I felt this deep desperation to run but I can't move out of fear. Until she reached me and tackled me to the ground. She cupped my face, looked me straight into the eyes and screamed. The next thing I knew I was screaming back and I felt fear and sadness and frustration all mixed up. That's when I woke up, mid scream with tears in my eyes.

      By now, the feeling has subsided. But I can't erased that image from my mind. Looking at this monstrous version of myself, I feel dirty in some way like there's something bad in me floating at the seams of my consciousness. The frequent ghost dreams I could take, but this one left me drained. I hope somebody knows what it means because I feel like I've missed out something big. Thanks in advance

    2. #2
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      Here's what it suggests to me.

      It sounds like you might suffer from social anxiety as I do, and perhaps more anxieties as well. I used to also dream of long school corridors lined with doors on both sides, and eventually, after studying a lot of psychology, I came to believe they represent choices in life. For example the choices you face entering adulthood, about what course to take with your life. In my case I came to realize that I refused to make a choice and instead liked the endless possibilities represented by youth and the carefree life of an adolescent - essentially I didn't want to choose one door and leave that corridor of possibilities, and settle into a life with only one or very few possibilities. Of course if you refuse to choose, the possibilities will reduce to just a few regardless - that's inevitable - but the fear is damaging. I don't know about this part, I could be wrong, but I wanted to start with that and move on to what seems more important.

      Fear - and anxiety is a form of it - blocks our vitality. It's related to the first chakra, the root chakra, which is about survival and security, and these factors are very important in the earliest months of life. If we don't get the security and aren't able to develop the trust we need to live a secure life, with the ability to relate to others socially, romantically, and sexually, it will haunt us into adulthood until we learn how to deal with it. The template for this kind of trust is created in earliest childhood, from interaction with your mother. If you feel unable to completely trust because she fails to meet your needs either physically or emotionally, through various types of abuse including emotional neglect, then you will be haunted by phantom fears. It's possible other things might cause these fears (maybe an abusive or neglectful father for instance, or problems with teachers), but often it comes down to the relationship with the mother, which is the primary relationship and establishes our template for relating in general to other people and to the world.

      To be more specific about the dream imagery, it sounds like the ghost represented something about yourself that maybe you fear - and it seems like that might be your own more animal nature. As humans we do have an animal nature, as well as our more human and even spiritual nature, but the animal nature is basic and inescapable. In fact it's closely related to the root chakra as well, as it's concerned with survival, nesting and sexual reproduction. These things are the life of an animal, it's pretty much all they concern themselves with beyond getting food and water - they're all survival and security related. And if these base animal things aren't under control, then it's pretty hard to get anything else in your life working properly until they are. It doesn't necessarily mean you need to become social and develop a good romantic/sex life, but at least you need to understand and deal with the fears at the root of it - THOSE are what is causing the problems (assuming I'm reading this right).

      You may well have Complex PTSD like I do, which results from an abusive or neglectful childhood. Many people who were emotionally neglected don't believe they were, because as a defense mechanism you develop a certain type of naivety that doesn't allow you to see what's being done to you - you'll accept terrible treatment and believe it's love. Mainly because children need love to thrive and even to survive, and if they aren't getting enough of it they will fool themselves that they are. I'll hold off on writing more in case I'm off base here, but if this does sound right there's more I can say, in PMs if you prefer.
      Last edited by Darkmatters; 03-08-2019 at 06:06 PM.

    3. #3
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      Darkmatters thank you very much for your insight. I really appreciate it. You were right about me having anxieties. It's very crippling sometimes because even if I wanted to go out there and do something new, I won't do it because I don't know if its safe and I hate the feeling that I don't have some semblance of control over it.

      You mentioned emotional neglect. There did came a time when I was young when my parents became embittered towards each other. My mother was always gone, licking wounds somewhere else. My father is also the same, drowning his sorrows in beer. But at that time, I preferred that they are away. It gave me peace when they are not at home. I have 2 siblings by the way and I just wondered since we experienced (or lack thereof) the same things from both our parents, why is it only me? They are both doing fine. My older sister has an adventurous soul and my younger sister is brave to take leaps in a relationship. That's what always gets me. I don't understand where these fears are coming from. If the ghost represents the lack of security - the imbalanced factor of my animal nature - would moving far will help? Like maybe if I feel like I could stand up on my own and be stable, maybe I could let go of these worries and fears?

    4. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by Kilsa View Post
      even if I wanted to go out there and do something new, I won't do it because I don't know if its safe and I hate the feeling that I don't have some semblance of control over it.
      I know the feeling, but it sounds like you have it worse than I do. The good news is, you can definitely become braver and get to a point where going out will be much easier. This is what you need to do - it will lay the ghosts inside to rest.

      Quote Originally Posted by Kilsa View Post
      You mentioned emotional neglect. There did came a time when I was young when my parents became embittered towards each other. My mother was always gone, licking wounds somewhere else. My father is also the same, drowning his sorrows in beer. But at that time, I preferred that they are away. It gave me peace when they are not at home.
      I know that one too. My parents used to argue so bad I couldn't stand it, until my dad started living in a hotel room in a nearby city and only visiting on weekends. But when he did, he'd come in hung over or drunk, late at night (I mean really late, like 3 in the morning) and sleep till 3 in the afternoon and then get a shower and leave again. Not much of a family life, and in a way I was glad when they got legally separated and the arguing stopped.

      Quote Originally Posted by Kilsa View Post
      I have 2 siblings by the way and I just wondered since we experienced (or lack thereof) the same things from both our parents, why is it only me? They are both doing fine. My older sister has an adventurous soul and my younger sister is brave to take leaps in a relationship. That's what always gets me. I don't understand where these fears are coming from. If the ghost represents the lack of security - the imbalanced factor of my animal nature - would moving far will help? Like maybe if I feel like I could stand up on my own and be stable, maybe I could let go of these worries and fears?
      You must be the most sensitive and vulnerable one. I know that can seem like a bad thing because of problems like this one, but it also means you have gifts that the more outgoing and bolder people usually don't - gifts like deeper thoughtfulness and compassion. Maybe creativity? That's fairly common among introverts. And possibly a depth of appreciation for certain kinds of things that the more extroverted people don't usually have, for the poetic and beautiful things in life.

      You need to understand, this fear is inside of you - you can't move away from it. Like your ghosts, it will just follow you. Unless there's something near where you're living now that frightens you? Certainly moving away from something like that could help. But if it's anxiety, there's no moving away from it.

      What you need to do is dissolve it by aiming the spotlight of conscious awareness at it. Figure out exactly why you're afraid, and also think about what's the worst that can actually happen when you go out. I do this in meditation frequently, and I can tell you it really helps. Write down your thoughts about it all, keep a journal and work your way deeper into the anxieties. Figure out precisely what it is you're afraid of, and then think realistically about if those fears are really justified, or are they exaggerated?

      It's also important to not blame anybody. It doesn't sound like you blame anybody from what you wrote, but I just want to make sure you understand. Forgiveness is important. Even if one of your parents was mean and angry, realize that it isn't their fault. It's a coping mechanism that they developed when they were young to deal with what was probably a bad situation at home, much like your anxieties are your coping mechanism. I spent a lot of time blaming my parents - both of them for their faults, but after some years I suddenly realized they were damaged in childhood just as I was, by parents who were doubtless hurt in childhood by their parents, and it probably wasn't their fault either. People just use different coping mechanisms to deal with stress - some people are fighters, some want to run away or hide, some freeze up and some try to appease everybody in the hopes that the fighting or aggression will stop. These are what's known as the Fight, Flight, Freeze and Fawn responses. I learned about them in an amazing book called Cptsd, From Surviving to Thriving by Pete Walker.

      Cptsd means complex post-traumatic stress disorder. I have it and it definitely sounds like you have it as well. I'm sure you do, it's what causes social anxiety, among other anxiety related problems. I recommend you get the book. It teaches some really good coping mechanisms that will work much better than the ones you came up with as a child. And it's also important to understand that - your anxieties are based on the coping mechanisms that worked well when you were young and living in that situation, but they don't work so well now that you're an adult. For whatever reason, most of us just keep on using the original coping mechanisms we developed as children even later in life, when we really need to come up with some better ones.

      To deal with the actual anxieties themselves, you use what's called exposure therapy. It consists of gradually facing what you're afraid of, just a little at a time, no more than you can handle, and you don't have to do it for long, just briefly. At first maybe just go outside in the yard for a while, and later walk up the street a ways and then back. At any point if fear strikes, just go back home. And be forgiving of yourself - that's just as important if not more so than forgiving everyone else.

      I had a thought about your ghost. It sounds like she was showing you a reflection of yourself, of your fear. The way she held your face and put hers right in front of it - just like looking in a mirror it sounds like. And she screamed first, right? Then you screamed? To me that suggests that she's telling you it's nothing but phantom fears - what you were frightened by was really only your own reflection exaggerated into something scary, and you didn't scream until she did. It's literally like being afraid of your own shadow. The subconscious communicates in symbolic images, and to me it really sounds like it was telling you you're not afraid of anything real. And I think you'll discover that's completely true as you dig deeper into the nuts and bolts of you actual fears - you'll find they aren't really anything to be frightened of. Is it mainly just what other people are thinking about you? If so that can't hurt you at all, it's just thoughts in somebody else's head. If their thoughts could hurt you then yours can hurt them just as much. And it's a good idea to keep that old stage trick in mind, for in case you get stage fright - just imagine them in their underwear (or in some ridiculous situation) and suddenly they aren't scary anymore, in fact you might just start laughing.

      That's all I can think of for right now, but if I think of more I'll post it. And feel free to PM me any time. I'll be glad to help as much as I can.
      Last edited by Darkmatters; 03-09-2019 at 05:41 AM.

    5. #5
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      Ok, I thought of some more! Once you get me wound up, stand back because i can write up a storm!

      This is actually a post I made on another thread not long ago: Writeup about Stoicism

      I want to also suggest to you that you study stoicism. I did it, starting 5 or 6 years ago, and it's been life-changing. It gives you a solid foundation to build on, it allows you to get over fears. In fact that's what it's designed to do and it definitely works. That post is partly about an irrational fear of death, and I know that part doesn't apply to your situation - except that maybe it does. The stoics believed that all irrational fears stem from the fear of death. In fact all ancient philosophies believed this, and I believe they're right. A big part of stoicism is to help you get over that fear, and when you've conquered it, your other phobias will fall away.

      And finally, I also want to recommend one more book - Courage, the Art of Living Dangerously by Osho. It's a more spiritual take on the same ground covered by stoicism in some ways, and can help immensely any time you feel afraid of anything.

      I know, it's a lot of reading, but this is your life, and a few months or even years spent in study of the right material and learning to incorporate it into your life can transform you into what you need to become.

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