Family Dreaming Across Time and Space

We know we're connected to each other in the great web of life, and it's one of many gifts of dreaming when those deep and mysterious connections are revealed. Here's a wonderful dream story.

A dreamer at one of my workshops shared a dream image that came to her when I drummed a short conscious dream journey. She perceived serpents weaving in and out of her body, and frankly, she was a little concerned.  But after playing with the serpent energy through movement, and talking about the archetypal symbolism of the snake, she felt the incredible vitality and transformative nature of the serpent and was no longer uncomfortable with the dream. In fact, the dream brought her to a new awareness of the vital kundalini energy that fuels and births life, and of her loving relationship with her husband and child. 

To paraphrase a brilliant observation mythologist Michael Meade made...when we meet the sacred we're having a meeting with power and this requires a sacrifice of some kind. Our dreamer's offering was to dance in the workshop with the scary power of the helper that came to her in the form of the snake. She had to have courage to do this. The allies are not always cute and cuddly. They are meetings with big medicine, and they lead us to our deeper self.

The next morning, our dreamer shared a photo of a drawing her little daughter, around 5 years old, had drawn that evening, at a great distance from her location at the retreat. The drawing was so interesting her husband had sent it to her. It appears her little girl is witnessing the sacred loving dance of her mother and father, complete with hearts, the drawing reflecting the energy of the dreamwork that unfolded that same day. And what is that on the ground near her father's feet? It appears to be a serpent. This drawing is a snapshot of the beautiful connection of love in this family, and of the mysterious presence of the serpent archetype and energy of creation we explored that very day.

Father's Day Dream Story

This weekend is Father’s Day, and I want to celebrate the love of fathers, and all the complexities, challenges, and joys of our relationships with our fathers. Dreaming was the final healing piece for me to transform the father/daughter wound, later in life, when I was 45, during a 5 day Esalen workshop with my now friend, Robert Moss. I came away from that week, after doing a menu of Active Dreaming processes facilitated by Robert, completely healed of the anger and sadness I had carried for a lifetime. This was truly a miracle for me, and I saw and felt my long-passed father in a brilliant new light, one of understanding and forgiveness.

My father was hardworking, creative and adventurous…he went to night school to earn his bachelor’s degree and then his master’s degree, while raising his family. He wrote a science fiction novel, was a skilled photographer and reporter, an amateur astrologer, and he loved to dance to Santana in his Bermuda shorts and black socks in our living room.... Every Friday he left a little bag of pistachio nuts in my dresser drawer, and when it was time for dessert in my family, my father would ceremoniously unlock the bedroom closet that held bags of all kinds of cookies and chocolates for my brothers and me to excitedly select from. He died in 1989, and never knew all the things in my life I wish I could have shared with him. A few years ago, I thought of him as I was driving my car one day, and I played the oracle game...I asked for a message from the universe…was my dad watching over me from the other side?  I turned on the radio to see what the message might be, and there was his favorite Santana song playing. He was dancing in my imaginal world in that moment.

Dad Boxing.jpeg

He was also tough, very tough, as a retired military man, who served in the navy during WWII as a teen, then went on to explore the army, eventually retired as a Master Sergeant from the Air Force, then worked for the Civil Service, for the Defense Department, a true believer in fighting for his country. We had different world views, and he was hard on me, very. But he loved and protected me the best he could in his way.

Seeing my father with love instead of anger changed so much for me! The weight I had carried my whole life was gone, miraculously replaced by   a freedom to live differently, without anger. This was huge, and was a pivotal moment in my life, eventually inspiring my decision to study with Robert and to eventually return to school to earn my graduate degrees in Dreams, and Consciousness Studies…the healing power of dreamwork is real, and I wanted to learn more. 

Now, when I think of my father, I laugh at the goofy things he did, and I’m delighted by the creative parts of me that I seem to have inherited from him, and I send love to the challenging memories of our time together. Sometimes he visits me in my dreams, and that is always a gift.