Hosts: Rachel Kelly, Debra Noumair, Carlos Remotti-Breton, Juliet Scott

Dreamers: 32 or 33

Dreams: 11 Associations: 53

Themes and Hypothesis

  • No 3: Father, son and holy ghost; priest
  • What it means to be a practitioner right now – desire for this sensemaking space – privileged but essential.
  • Regular people – from India, US, UK, Europe – linking to past few matrices
  • Afterwards, intimate, warmth when the matrix disperse – part of the box – the white wall – TI as container.
  • What’s included, what isn’t : Dream last night – museum space, creation of a digital box, made out of lasers – artefact in museum; Zoom boxes – open and close and sneak into.

The Institute has moved home, the group excavating, opening, being hidden in, forbidding access to boxes represented a change in form of the container.  This was the ‘the container that seeks to uncontain’  it represents a change in the usual form. The switching of role as it was the police officer was suffocated.   Containment is also to allow disruption, chaos, change.   The matrix seemed ambivalent about whether the usual forms of containment are adequate for what has been unleashed.  Is all the good we know tainted?  Can evil and malevolence be contained?  Can we ever feel at home again?  Can the center hold? (Yeats)

Dream Reflections Dialogue

  • Sensation of containers.  4 people abandoned session? Starting late – 3 minutes, waiting for people to join.  Not too many dreams, lots of associations.
  • Associations can be dreamlike themselves, the whole process like dreaming together
  • Sadness at daughter’s first period – that she’s grown up: a nostalgia for the child, the mischievous child, stealing sweets.  The spontaneity of childhood, of being in touch with something less conscious.  A fear of maturity, of having to grow up, not allowed to leak anymore.
  • Matrix itself, working away at opening up boxes – wouldn’t stop, a massive visual metaphor.
  • We’re sitting in boxes on Zoom – light and hope when we actually meet up with people (when boxes had to be opened up to let in light).
  • Quickly got caught up in the boxes plus sharp move away from the dream about riots, police, kneeling on policeman’s neck.  Glanced at it again but never confronted it.  Authority figures were present – priest; 
  • Terrifying image of container that can’t contain, leakage – priest is going to be paid back in his own coin
  • Child – being washed down, ambivalence: getting tired of caring for a child – abuse of the child, loss of innocence of the child. Where does the child sit in the adult?
  • Different languages spoken – though we understand, there are different meanings of the words – interpretations.  What is big, what is small, who is big?  Where are we?
  • Emotional dichotomy – am I smiling/frowning?  Adult, child – who has power?  Breaking power dynamic through play.
  • Privilege and the marginalised – how do we remember, and build on these boxes for transformative purposes.
  • Nostalgia – 3 houses from childhood.  First period also linked to fertility. Moved by some of the dreams.
  • First 3 dreams – quick.  Different themes.  No animals in this matrix apart from possible vermin in the bakery.  Where’s our instinct?
  • Mass extinction of animals in the world – extinguishing them from our unconscious as well.
  • Ourselves being extinguished, through virus.
  • This series of matrices coming to an end.  Not quite yet but eventually
  • Sound fell off for some people – the disjointedness; absence; mass extinction; no mention of weather.
  • Boxes – team of Institute – being moving, where are the treasures of the Institute, moving to a new location, what will be kept, what will disappear.  The gold jewellry.
  • Invisible force – sharing beads with family/friends.  How are we letting the light in, collectively?

Dreams and Associations

D1: tribe in middle of Amazon – anthropologist – isolated, never visited.  Speaking own language, invented, discovered.  If they go and visit another tribe, they will find they will have also invented own language – yet will understand.  Sitting with tribe later– child stands up, has had shower – inviting D to wash him down. Another child wants to be washed down.  May have o wash down all the children. Wakes up and feels ambivalent. Smiling or frowning?

D2: holding miniscule savoy biscuit.  Top has white icing – v tiny.

A1: D1 – “it is evening of the day I sit and watch the children play as tears goes by”.  Tears could be shower.

D3: public place, show, concert, not sure, suddenly all turns violent.  Police trying to control but can’t.  Rioting, fighting, 3 policeman pinned down – hands tied behind backs. Surrounded by angry people as police had hidden.  Policeman looks at Dreamer why don’t you do something.  D kneels on his neck and says how does it feel, how does it feel.  He shouts, you will go to jail.  D braces harder and suddenly don’t remember any more.  Pieces, but don’t remember.

A2: eyes filled with tears during that dream.

A3: children are small, cake is small, reduced in size somehow.

A4: dainty biscuit – reminded me of childhood moments of sitting around politely eating biscuits which you only have with visitors.

A5: hands?? down – can also be ‘to extort’

D4; invisible force in world – which controls myself and the world around me.  Malicious force, in the dream force stops. Turns into 10 beads – has to keep them separate, they’re attracted to each other and force will come back to life.  Gives to family separately kept in box, opened once a day to get light. Group of people trying to get the beads – battle going on.

A6: just after pandemic started, trying to get protective care.  Relative arranged delivery of masks and gloves, shared within family.

A7: feelings still cherished, throughout isolation.

A8: biscuits eaten as a child, and the box they came in.  Specific bakery – closed down because it was accused of having parts of mice/insects in the bakery.  Turned out, that it was not true – a vendetta against someone in the bakery.

A9: childhood in soviet Union.  No sweets, grandma had box of chocolates, sealed.  Little hand, taking the chocolates.  Grandma sent box to US, half empty – thought it might be border immigration.

A10: box of biscuits – against the law.  Stealing biscuits with sister.  Aunty visiting, mother found box half empty – big drama.  What is against the law?  Just sweets.

A11: childhood in India – 2 ice creams – endorsed by embassy, clear of germs; another by another foreign embassy – claimed the other ice cream was tainted.  British and UK embassies.  Name/brand you associated with.

A12: 2 languages, ice creams, the divide.  2 languages – unconscious thought in our dreamscape and our conscious thoughts when we’re awake. How do we understand our unconscious thoughts and articulate them?

A13: sinister, worrying things: 10 or 11, breasts growing – wearing a vest – little flower on it – pretty.  Went to Doctor with mother.  Doctor said “what a lovely vest you’re wearing” – male adult commenting, very attentive, too much.

A14: boxes – 2 languages – Mum’s relatives in Iran sent over gold jewellery in small boxes – meant for Dreamer.  Mum didn’t like child wearing jewellery.  Put them on soft toys and got lost.  Heartbroken they were lost.

A15: cream biscuit – savoir – knowledge – privilege of knowledge by society’s elite.  Very small group that holds the knowledge of the world.  Important to everyone on the street.

D7: in Middle East, in ornate, dark room, Persian carpet. Friend sitting on the bed, D, kneeling at the bed.  He was telling her about contracts. How do you make contracts here? 3 ways: agreement; agreement between people who believed in God; agreement in terms of laws.  Intrigued by the idea of agreement re God – how does it work, explain…  How do you buy a house?  How do you trust that money won’t be stolen.  Getting irritated with her.  Next moment – in big bright mall, market.  Still speaking about contract – towards friends, going to kiss her, how do I prevent her from kissing me, in C-19.

A16: 3.  1st wave, 2nd wave, 3rd wave.  Way not Wave. 3rd wave – waiting for this in my country.  Preparing.  Waves and scenes.

A17: most people been vaccinated and tourists returning.  Business people insist on touching, shaking hands – like no other authority saying how things should be.

D8: dream last night: 3 meetings I was attending, in increasing size. Meeting 1: seemed to be from inside my body.  Circle of chairs, discussing, social-political activism of some kind. Meeting 2: outside body, chairs in line, all could see each other.  After the meeting, someone said, let’s meet up another time – you leak.  Her emotions were on the surface.  Meeting 3: Far outside of body, watching herself, trying to find a place for her chair.  Lined up like a school.  Kept trying to get to the front to see everyone and all to see each other.  A sense I wasn’t right because feelings leak out.

A18: teacher who would pick on people who were sensitive.  No 3 and waves: 

D9: v close friend in India – I am leaving his house, typical, couple of floors, narrow bit of land – compound, in city like Bangalore. Everything shifts – not quite where I think I would be, ground level? Gone in through a side exit? Don’t recognise it, still the city, like it, slightly different, disjointed.  Walking away, forgotten why, can’t remember how to get back in.  Maybe I should be trying to get back in.  Would be lost if tried to go back in. Giving appearance I know what I’m doing.  Builders, labourers approach carrying long objects – poles? Symbolic not practical.  Carefully moving them away from house towards gate.  I’m in between them – thinking should I ask them how to get back into house.

A19: poles: processions with xxx on top of poles, carried around neighbourhood.  Just a pole – totemic poles.

D10: in my house, but actually made up of 3 houses dreamer had lived in.  Walked in – dining table right in front of door – need to put this back where it belongs.  People – social setting.  Went into kitchen to get stuff, children had taken everything.  Needs to be accessible so everyone can get them, a real sense of order.

A20: Looking at an extra office chair I don’t need anymore, should I throw it out or keep it?  In a couple of weeks we’ll be allowed to have people indoors and I can host big dinner parties – I’ll need this extra chair.

A21: biscuit box full of biscuits, locked to keep in emotions.

A21: leaking dreamer, told she leaks: unconscious leaking into consciousness. Duality of leaking into something rigid. 2 dreams in evening – the end of the day, end of life.

A23: leaking: as a teenager at all-girls high school – your period had bled through and people could see that you had your period.

A24: sitting with another emotion – a parent, uncle: feeling of sadness when child has first period, going forwards, little celebration, tinged with sense of vulnerability.  Coming of age, moving from innocence.

A25: locked box of biscuits – client with concerns re control – over body, disordered eating… talking about something else, she talked about visiting parents house and something about a box – father had a box with a padlock on it – where sweets were kept.  Father and brother only had keys.  Mother/daughter were forbidden to eat unless they asked, and then humiliated.

A26: Jack in a box.

A27: Pandora’s box.

A28: key as phallus

A29: we’re all in locked boxes right now.

A30: institutions coming through – boxes, police officers

A31: little girl’s hand making way through cellophane packaging without it being noticed.

A32: mother’s jewellery box – kind of mother to let dreamer play with her jewellery – still has that box – 80 years’ old with some original jewellery.

A33: stunt, as a kid saw – locked in box in water, then would escape – only a man depicted.

A34: Mother had a big wooden chest, antique travel chest, sewing knitting, textiles and a round box with all the needles.  Played with it as a kid, opening it and trying to make sense of all the fabrics etc.

A35: all boxes, keeping the dreams inside?  In this matrix, the dreams are not coming.

A36: the dreams are in lockdown 

D11: 2 boxes – portable toilets loaded on a trailer truck, at beach.  Picked up or delivered? Beach, colours, reminded What lies beneath? How organisations really work.  Waking up – first line: “It’s been 7 hours and 15 days..” Sinead O’Connor – Nothing compares to you. Previously known as Prince.  O’Connor – Rememberings released.

A37: previously known: Delta Variant – previously known as Indian variant.

A38:  what was previously known and what do we know now?

A39: listening to spiritual podcast – remembering, not.  Tabernacle – consecrated stuff stored inside. Rosary. Do we have faith or not?

A40: moving from Tabernacle street – moving house what is being lost? What is being found

A41 What is progress? How do we process change, dreams?

A42: struck me – faith

A43: Beautiful plans of Tavistock move – what might happen?  What was so good about Tabernacle?

A44: Tabernacle – very privileged access.

A45: Usually a male priest with key.

A46: Great amount of anxiety: previously known as.  Who am I and what was I previously known as.  Who knew which part of me.

A47: boxes as coffins.

A48: instead of priest, he was known as, she was known as…

A49: Sinead O’Connor alive, Prince, dead.  Previously known as; Still known as even if dead.  What do we know, who we know, what they’re known as – process of reassessing.

A50: previously known as: buried, or key thrown away.  Back to boxes, agency and choice to unlock that box.

A51: proof reading – a container that seeks to uncontain.

A52: Infinity boxes – never ending gifts

A53: tiny box, right at end, back to the tiny biscuit.

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About Juliet Scott

I am the TIHR Archive Curator and artist-in-residence. I lead this truly exciting and groundbreaking project with its ethos of collaborative archival practice and its possibilities for bringing the unique and innovative social science approach of The Tavistock Institute to a renewed and wider audience. I am a current TIHR practitioner and teach organisational consultancy and change in the UK and further afield. Last year this took me to Argentina where I also travelled discovering the unique volcanic landscape of Payunia. More than anything I like to walk with friends and family, I have an allotment in Walworth, South East London where I am famous for my year round BBQs. It is very special place.


Responding and Researching