SDM 8 April 2021
55 dreamers; 24 dreams; 43 associations
Synthesis: themes

  • Today’s dreams and associations are full of sticks and shoes. There are a lot of references to either aggression or (the absence of) sexuality:

Stick as a weapon- starting forward with stick.
Link to phallic function.
Childhood sexuality- fetishisation.
Shoes as fetish object- not used for what they could be used for eg. the practical shoes of the nun.  Glance went away from female genitalia down to shoes- looking at female genitalia couldn’t be tolerated so eyes cast down to shoes which became a fetish.

  • From this nothing new/young seems to be born:

Power of vagina – phallus as generative- but female ultimately makes the child- creative power of women. Surprised that there were no babies in this matrix- whale pups and kittens but no human babies- usually birth or human babies appear somewhere but this was about animals.  Perhaps there’s a fear about not wanting to bring next generation into Covid world.

Kittens- references to young people in auditorium with phones- a few references to young people- how is it to be young in the world? Young guy expressing sympathy but dreamer has more important things to do.

 D20: Reminds me of a dream about a young guy who wants to express some sympathy and tries to talk with me and he is trying to give me some paper and on the paper are some questions.  I refuse him as I have important things to do and don’t have time for those questions.  The question most important to him  was ‘Why don’t you like me?’

The child only seems to come into the matrix through nostalgia, not as a representation of a possible future/hope.

  • Instead of a generative, more a fight/flight state of mind. What is behind that?

Battle between sexes- talking about phallus or female genitalia- seems to be v feminine matrix- battle rather than possible babies.
Interesting moment about neighbour mishearing that I was a boy- something about male and female that is not to be understood so easily.
Too easy to understand split as a fight between men and women.  Seems like a way out of something else.
In Australia- rape in parliament, going back to accusation from many years ago that is now being looked at- the woman later killed herself.  Australian of the Year is a woman who was sexually abused and is now leading a movement about sexual misbehaviour towards women.  Like another wave of zeitgeist a few years ago.  What’s behind it all?
Matrix opened with three or four people of Indian origin.  BLM movement- awareness of racism starts building- there are distractions and highlighting feminism could serve as a distraction to avoid addressing racism?  So many pockets of people feel discriminated against that they deflect off each other.
We run with the stories we know- eg. ‘Pinocchio’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz’, but not the story about Mohammad and the dog- some stories covered by narratives that we know about.

  • The primitive was very present today. The image of the matrix as a garbage collector where individual dreams/associations are dropped. Less space for sensemaking, connecting, thinking.

 Human instinct, vague and people not trusting in their instincts.  What is natural?
 Should we trust our instincts?  Should rational/logical part of self mediate?  Are instincts sufficient without other stuff?
Image of being on end of cliff with wrong shoes on.  Started off associations about shoes- inappropriate shoes in a dangerous situation.
Increasing incidence of male suicide.  Females are taking up their space – where is the space for the male?  Is their space being eroded?  Not enough room.
“Nobody cared”
Different pockets of people who feel discriminated against deflect from the needs of each other- feels like there is so much neediness- so much coming out that it is hard to stop and contact the other person.  Covid- being distanced and shut away.
 Social distancing/unsocial distancing.
 ‘I feel overwhelmed by all the dreams and associations’
A wish to stay with dreams and associations and not to find meaning- defence against meaning.  Primitive- natural, how things go – no reflection.
Pushing of time boundaries.
First dream- spiritual teacher but not anymore- loss of thinking, loss of the spiritual- reflection and meaning.
‘Had some thinking but it got lost’
Pull to instinctual- beating with stick- rather than co-operation, organisation, compassionate leader Moses didn’t even get to the promised land.
Hatred- Islamophobia- dog who bit the prophet Mohammad- Hatred of love, sexuality and the body.
Moving away- running away- made intervention about dream
No one asked another dreamer to  elaborate/tell more about what had been offered- is that a Zoom thing?

Dream Reflection Dialogue

Felt flooded by amount of dreams- wondered if all unconscious images and pictures want to be seen and heard.  Felt overwhelmed.

Feeling pulled in different directions- railway taking me forward, children take me back, ‘Alice in Wonderland’- fathers in here and now.

Interactions between humans and animals- how much closer are we getting through this time because of understanding of environment and global warming etc.  Mentioning sex and closeness, not as frequent as it should be.

Struck by animals, instincts, dealing with our anxieties.  Little boys and technology- more boys than girls in dorm.  Have been experiencing ‘Zoom fatigue’.  Can’t wait to get back to work in May and see clients face to face.  Oppression, little boys and technology- pornography.  Zoom has also been wonderful eg. For dream Matrix.  Instincts are all confused.

 A lot of nostalgia in the Matrix- a lot of returning to memories of childhood, toys etc.  Some small hopes of moving forward.  Association with tiger was ‘The Life of Pi’- a boy stranded on boat in middle of the ocean with a tiger- survival.

Pull between wild side and animal instinct and sexual tension etc.  Moving to childhood- as if you don’t want to talk about this- fantasy and Dorothy and five year olds etc.  Discomfort?  Running away to childhood?  Left wondering ‘where is the adult?’

 Kept coming back to idea of resistance to pinning down meaning.  Sensing desire to stay with dream and stay with flow of association.  Thinking of the sea as persistent presence.  

 Seems like struggle of leadership- old images, memories and experiences embodied from childhood are playing out.  What is leadership?  What we know of is from families, schools and being children.  What is leadership in the current context?  Stick is about the phallus- who has the phallus?  If the woman has it then what is the man going to do? If the man has it what will be done with it.  Generative, creative power- what is it?  How does one use it or access it?

 Red shoes- powerful symbol of female sexuality.  Young women riffing on their red shoes.  As women we are wary of what happens to us when we express our sexuality.  Is the red shoe the vagina?

 Thinking about holding that which we desire- erotic/ attraction as well as collective responsibility- getting to work and moving forward.

 Vagina is a path to life- which we are born through- ‘Alice in Wonderland’, another way of living and surviving.  Racing and competing for resources.  The way we worked today gave many ways of surviving- still questions of what will be generated in the future.

 Transitions- opportunities- what will the future look like?  Asking questions about leadership, gender, sex- hard to know how to anchor our reality at the moment.  Things seem wobbly.  Pandemic has exacerbated that.

 So many mentions of red shoes- made me think about red as root chakra- safety and security.  ‘Wear the shoes and start walking.’

 Walking is what we are doing most at this time- once mundane but now glamourised.  Fantasy leap is what we crave in this time when we can’t travel.

 Walking- I like the idea of red and root chakra, but danger in walking ‘These shoes are made for walking… all over you’.  Tension between whether we will be good or toxic in this situation.

 Thought I heard reference to Dorothy- couldn’t get image out of mind.  ‘Somewhere over the rainbow’.  What is ‘over the rainbow’?  What world will we inhabit after the virus?  We don’t know.

 Wobble- normally in relation to environment around- now wobble is us, integrated wobble- do we think we are wobbling or are things around us wobbling?



 D1: Brief recollection- spiritual teacher in the dream, with two other women, also his teachers.  He is no longer the dreamer’s spiritual teacher but was in the past. Teacher asked ‘Have you stopped all of the other work’- said ‘Yes’, teacher asked me to go ahead and start the work and go forward, but make sure not to do anything else.

 D2: Gandhi in the dream, I bent down to touch his feet and get his blessings and he asked me to hold his walking stick- The stick was unusually tall, taller than him.  He asked me how it felt.  ‘Solid, steady and time to move forward.’  Gandhi has a reaction of shock as if I had said something he wasn’t expecting.  He moves forward and I begin to walk with him.

 D3: Early morning, I went out for a walk.  As I left my apartment I saw a bunch of dogs howling, they came towards me to attack me.  I started moving towards the gate but saw the gate was closed.  Had a stick in my hand, stood my ground- woke up.

 A1: Dream with Gandhi and stick in hand- image of Moses with staff, leading people from slavery to freedom.  Thought of Gandhi doing the same thing.

 A2: Dream with dogs howling- fear, in dreams dogs often denote companions- we are afraid of our companions right now.  Who to trust? Polarised.

 D4: Attended the cinema with much caution.  Entered auditorium- room packed, overwhelming.  Younger people on their phones exchanging messages.  

 D5: Back in Massachusetts where I did my grad degree- in dormitory where I used to live.  Many people, girls and boys, in the same room.  Someone comes in with a box full of dozens of kittens.  Said ‘The more we collected, the more wanted to come with us, so we gathered them all.’  I was irritated- this was not a place for stray kittens!  Nobody cared so I went to an official person in another building and asked them whether kittens were allowed in the dorm (called Cabot Hall, though this was a different building in reality).  Spoke to him in Greek (my mother tongue).  I asked ‘Do you speak Greek?’- but he said no.  So I started to explain situation, but nobody cared.  Nobody was wearing masks in USA, wondered if I should cover my mouth but wasn’t sure what to do as I wasn’t from there.

 A3: Kittens- cats and kittens can denote instincts – are we able to follow our instincts right now?  Are we confused by our instincts- what to do next?

 A4: Overwhelmed by people in an auditorium- whenever I now go to gigs or concerts in crowded places that used to look natural, I am confronted with feeling of nostalgia and thrill but also fear.  Wondering if this has always been there and is now uncovered by the current situation.

 D6: South Africa playing Pakistan in One Day Internationals- SA lost 12 wickets for one run (impossible in cricket).  Outraged by the result and couldn’t understand why nobody seemed to care- shocked what was happening to the sporting event in SA.

 A5: Struck by first several dreams to do with spiritual leadership and sticks or staffs.  Looking out a small window and when I focus far away I see big trees that are just beginning to have leaves, but mostly look like big sticks.  When I look less far away I see a big bamboo stick left in the garden from last growing season.  All sticks are in the ground- don’t know how to move forward with that.

 A6: Expression ‘Walk softly and carry a big stick’.

 A7: Cricket dream- Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan – former cricketer, has linked riot and rape cases in Pakistan to how women dress.

 A8 to A: Yesterday I began to worry about loss of memories in Covid- might forget quickly what has unfolded, there might be a fast return to normal life, forgetting the impact on people, especially women.

A9: Dream about dormitory with boys and girls and kittens- memory of engineering college, at the time there would be 5 girls and 70 boys- so skewed.  Boys would go to other colleges to meet girls.  Energy around uneven balance- I related this to birth and rapid rise of technology- boys and no girls.  What must have happened to boys when there are no girls and only computers?  

 A10: A month ago the UN declared one of the days as an important day to begin to combat Islamophobia and epidemic rise of hatred against Islam.  Wondered what hatred was really about.  Hatred for love, sexuality, the body- fight between Christianity and Islam.

 A11: Dream about barking dogs- dog who bit prophet Mohammad.

 A12: Sticks – River Styx that forms boundary between earth and underworld.

 A13: Gandhi- thinking about Pope Francis who, this Easter Sunday, made an address that embraced every faith and religion, wanting to bring them together.

 A14 to A: Styx- mythological story about Psyche, Aphrodite and Eros; one of the last punishments Aphrodite gives to Psyche is to give her a box- her beauty is lost whilst looking after Eros, so sends Psyche to underworld to Persephone to take some of her beauty to replenish her own.  Psyche must carry two gifts- one for boatman to ferry her across the river and one to Cerberus, the three headed dog.  

 A15: Memory- organised one trek for four people.  Trying to convince younger people to carry trekking sticks- too old to carry trekking sticks, all about safety and helping with journey.

 A16: Many rich associations- nobody cares and you have to make your way on your own- which dreams does nobody care about and that have to make their way into the matrix on their own?

 D7: Driving my car and my brother was in passenger seat.  Very close to my brother.  Suddenly car in front attacked by robbers and gangsters- people in front of us viciously attacked.  Brother escaped and left me in the car alone.  Woke up worried that I was next- frightened.

 D8: Platform of the railway station- modernised, looking for familiar places on platform- like usual spot to get off the train, or spot where we used to have to board the train, around the corner- couldn’t find these places

 D9: Previous employer contacted me and said ‘We have a job for you, we would like you to come back to the organisation- day rate will be twice as much as previously- would like you to join the leadership team- please come back, it will be great to have you back.’  Job stopped just as Covid started last year.  

 D10: In a forest-like place, a place I know, tall trees, walking alone.  Sun is beginning to go down- thinking I should turn back.  Turn around and at far end of path I see a lion and lioness cross the path.  They don’t see me and I think ‘I didn’t realise there were wild animals here’.  Realise I should tread more carefully.  As I start walking I see a huge tiger- no other way than passing it- think to myself that I won’t be able to outrun it.  Surrender- down on knees with head down.  In anticipation of what will happen but don’t dare look up- then cautiously look up and see tiger’s head just in front of me.  It is sitting the same way I am sitting.  We end up in some strange way communicating.

 A17: Last dream- what if we learned to speak to our deepest fears?

 A18: Last dream- connecting to cats + instinct- lion and lioness in forest- couple-hood and companionship- walks away, and instinct is staring you in the face.  Called to surrender to our instinct and we are frightened.

 A19: Dream about brother leaving sister in car and not rescuing her- appearance of Moses, Imran Khan, Gandhi- male leadership, a failure of male leadership in the times we are living in.  Failure to rescue from a situation.  A dream where woman was asked to join leadership of organisation- what might women add to leadership in contrast to current leadership models in many countries at the moment?

 A20: Moses- people going for 40 years in the desert, walking to the promised land.  Moses himself doesn’t reach the promised land.

A21: Tiger in front of face- safaris, what the natural order of things should be.  How we get rooted in natural way of thinking about something that isn’t necessarily correct.  Might be natural for tigers to be among people.  Women in leadership- what is the natural order of things?

 A22: Conversation I heard online yesterday- topic was Science and Spirituality.  Discussion around female leadership- combined with discussion about need to do shadow work- problems of positive psychology and how that can be toxic for women.

 A:23 Something missing- to do with sexuality- ‘the tiger in the room’. References to spirituality- Gandhi and Pope Francis- neither of them able to acknowledge sexuality.  Gandhi used to lie with young women to test his virginity- Pope Francis seems ambivalent.  Worries about what will happen to sexuality post pandemic.  Tried to remember and couldn’t remember the last time I had a sexual dream.

 A24: Discussion makes me return to dream about cinema space- people are together but communicating through their phones- contact and physical contact is mediated by technology.

 D20: Reminds me of a dream about a young guy who wants to express some sympathy and tries to talk with me and he is trying to give me some paper and on the paper are some questions.  I refuse him as I have important things to do and don’t have time for those questions.  The question most important to him was ‘Why don’t you like me?’

 D21: I was back in Canary Wharf in my old job (that I left about 8 years ago).  Returned post virus.  Fire alarm went off- went back to a time when I used to look after health and safety.  Went to get a high vis vest but it didn’t have the right logo on it from the old organisation.  Got everyone off the floor but struggled with the task and went and hid in stairwell until next morning.  Then got the train to Wales where I went out onto some cliffs and then realised the cliffs got narrower and more precarious until sheer drop- very slippery.  Man and woman trying to coax me down.  Got down off ridgeway and they asked me ‘What were you doing wearing work shoes in such a dangerous ridgeway’.  Teleported back to Canary Wharf- Christmas party organised by a colleague- tried to log on to computer but couldn’t log on and realised I had to have it out with my old boss as I had shirked away from my responsibilities.  

 D22: Old colleague of mine in an office surrounded by other men.  He seemed to be leaving a conversation.  Office in glass walls- we could see what was going on.  In dream, colleague who was talking was very attractive.  Overwhelmed by his popularity- felt very attracted to him, becoming besotted by him.

 A25: Work shoes worn on precarious cliffside- religious women wear sensible shoes- Pope Francis, popes and red shoes, leads to notion of ‘Red Shoes’- ballet movie where beautiful shoes are possessed and you can’t stop dancing until you kill yourself from dancing.  Thinking about Gandhi’s feet.

 A26: Red shoes- Dorothy’s ruby slippers, she had everything she needed to get home the whole time.  

 A27: In third grade I lived two hours outside NYC- dad went on business trip to NYC which he didn’t do often- came home with amazing red shoes for me, they were my favourite thing forever.

 A28: Red shoes- I was five or six, first pair of gum boots were red- I loved them.  Would fill them up with water and walk as they made a funny sound.  Kept them long after I outgrew them.

 A29: After I was born neighbour misheard and thought I was a girl and gave a gift of a frock and shoes- confusion to see picture of myself with satin shoes and tutu.

 A30: Earlier dream about brother leaving sister in car- brought up challenges of sibling rivalry, how this may have gone into a full blown mode in the pandemic.  

 A31: Fire and safety in Canary Wharf/cliff in Wales- words reminded me of story of Pinocchio who jumps and falls into a whale and is transported to ‘the other side’, but while inside of the whale is totally clueless- dark and unknown, no idea.  Wondered if this was like the act of surrendering to seemingly monstrous situation- not knowing where it would pop us over to the other side.  Risk of standing on other side.  Work boots- boot your work and do your real work.

 A32: Wales- good news, in North Atlantic scientists are surprised because blue whales (not sure if they were blue whales or some other whales) at risk of extinction have had plethora of calves- not sure why.  Whales having lots of babies so whales are happy I guess! 

A33: Walrus who has appeared in Britain.  Not at home but enjoying sunning itself- occasionally people get too close.  

 A34: Whales and walruses and tigers and people- ‘Pinocchio’ story- wanted to be a real boy and not a wooden boy, feeling emotions and feelings.  Distancing.  Son recovering from Covid- all senses other than eyes began to break down- we can only see- seeing connections with the wild side.

 A35: Red shoes- power of femininity, more females than males at this Matrix.  

 A36: Red shoes- sexuality- is it there or not?  Red shoes- temptation of sexuality also present, not clear, ambiguous.

 A37: Red shoes- song from artist Dusan Vasiljev, died in 1924- killed himself because of war- made a song called ‘A Man Sings After a War’- I waded in blood up to my knees, I have no more dreams…’

 A38: ‘Red shoes, no knickers’

 A39: Clowns often have red shoes- jokes and jest being called for in this time- to have a laugh.  Connecting with sexuality- why all so serious about sex?  Maybe sex and fun/jokes are the same?

 A40: Keep thinking about story of Pinocchio- wants to go to land of toys- dangerous place from which he has to escape.  In the end he has to submit to the law of the father, take on a good work ethic, play is left behind.

 A41: ‘Where the Wild Things Are’- Max’s room turned into a jungle.  Plays with the animals but then realises he misses home, when he returns a hot supper is waiting for him from his mother.

 A42: Songs with ‘red shoes’ mentioned.  Kate Bush song- Elvis Costello- ‘I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused but since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels want to wear my red shoes…’

 A43: Wim Wenders’ film- ‘Wings of Desire’- angel wants to be human and sells their wings.

 D23: 50 families arrive at festival of theatre, participating in special act.  Line up in lines of 25.  White marble floors. Central to space is an entry with metal railing between two stone stairwells which lead two flights down to a pair of black doors.  ‘Entry’ in white paint on one, ‘Exit’ in red paint on other- amber glow from stairwell.  Children hold parents’ hands, adults talk. Some children misbehave.  Audience waits.  Steam from humidifiers.  Woman gestures for families to move forward, gesticulates with long bony fingers… 

Host had to interrupt dreamer to close the matrix.


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