Work with your Dreams to Strengthen Your Intuition

Our dreams are a rich source of images and feelings, which can illuminate the workings or our subconscious mind. Learn more about the connection between dreams and deep innate wisdom in an excerpt from Rose Inserra's book "Dreams: What Your Subconscious Wants to Tell You". Discover her four-step method for practical dreamwork and understanding your dreams.

There are many pathways to intuitive development--meditation, working with numerology, consulting oracle cards...Our dreams, too, offer a source of significant images and feelings. When we dream, we are not only processing and integrating the events of the day--we also gain access (albeit limited) to our subconscious mind and our deepest inner wisdom.

If you are interested in working with your dreams, Rose Inserra has written several illuminating books on the subject. In "Dreams: What Your Subconscious Wants to Tell You," She uses the metaphor of Theseus and the minotaur to describe our own journey of self-discovery through dreaming:

"Legend has it that the Minotaur, which was half-bull, half-man, lived in a labyrinth on the island of Crete. Every year, or nine years depending on the version, the monster demanded a sacrifice and seven young men and women were sent into the labyrinth to their death. The hero, Theseus, decided he would kill the beast and found his way to Crete to pose as one of the volunteers. By the hand of fate he met Ariadne, the daughter of King Minos, who fell in love with him and agreed to help him.

Ariadne gave Theseus a spool of thread as he entered the labyrinth and held onto the other end. In the darkness of the labyrinth, Theseus slew the Minotaur and followed the thread back to where Ariadne was waiting for him. The dark underground labyrinth represents our unconscious minds waiting for a glimpse of activity in order to awaken from its inertia and rise us through the subconscious into consciousness. The lifeline that Ariadne gives Theseus can be seen as a symbol of our dream threads, which connect us to our deepest intuition as represented by the Minotaur, which is half-animal.

The thread allows the hero to return safely. In the same way, it is safe for us to go deep within ourselves and journey back with the knowledge that we have learnt something more about ourselves. The trick is in having faith in the thread, and that when you are feeling lost in the dark it can guide you to some unknown part of you and back out to the light again.

'Fil d'Ariane' or 'Ariadne's thread' is what French cave divers call the guideline that they lay when cave diving so they can find their way back out no matter what the conditions--where there is no light, silty dark water, or just endless chambers that resemble one another.

Dreams are also threads that lead somewhere. Part of you is holding that thread so you can complete the dreaming process safely. You can glimpse your intuition from your dream world and treasure the magic it brings to your waking life. With this intuition you can gain entry further into the underworld, and return safely as you follow the thread out."

Of course, an intellectual understanding is just one part of the picture--There is also a heart-centered understanding that comes from direct experience and practice. After reading the passage above, you may decide to start keeping a dream journal, and see where your dreams may lead, or what intuitive wisdom there is to be gained from this sort of exploration.

To help you get started, here is a simple 4-step method for practical dreamwork and understanding your dreams:

Dreams: What Your Subconscious Wants to Tell You

1. Describe the dream. Write down the dream as soon as you wake up, using as many details as possible or share your dream with someone. Note the settings, people and characters, objects, emotions, actions. Write the dream in the present tense. This brings you back into the total experience of the dream and recreates it.

2. Bridge the images. Connect the images to specific situations in your waking life. Does the theme remind you of anything or anyone in your life? Find as many connections as you can.

3. Record your emotions during and after the dream.

4. Reflect on your dream. What is the dream asking you to do? Consider acting on the advice of your dream. What lesson have you learned?

Be attentive to your sense of intuition--listen to yourself, and be open to unexpected messages from within. Don't be afraid to embrace your sensitive side, and draw strength from your innate powers of perception.

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