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Dream Gates

Dream Gates

Loving the enemy in the rest room: emotional healing through dreams

“Kisses” urinals designed by by Meike van Schijnde

When I was in my 20s, I had a terrible enemy, a man with whom I fought many battles. The balance of blame is not something I choose to determine now; each of us was no doubt at fault. Years after we had parted company and the conflict period was over in regular life, I still dreamed we were fighting. One night, I dreamed I was in a men’s room, cleaning up, when my old adversary entered.

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When he saw me, he puffed up like a human bull frog, bigger and bigger until he looked like a demon. In the dream, I realized I had a choice. I could regard him as a malevolent demon with which I needed to do battle, or I could do something else. I chose that something else. There, in the men’s room (of all places!) I said to the worst enemy I ever had, “I love you.”

No sooner had I spoken these words, than the air came out of him. He deflated like a punctured balloon. There, on the floor in front of me, in place of the man (and the demon) was a pink, innocent baby.

I rushed to the sink. I needed to throw up. As I purged, I saw that what was streaming from my mouth was a mess of rusty nails and rusty tacks, dozens, maybe hundreds of them. I knew, in the dream, that these embodied the hateful and harmful thoughts that had been projected against me, years ago. I felt cleansed and released, and rose from the dream, certain that something had been healed and resolved for good and all.

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I never had any problems again with that old enemy, in dreams or in regular life. Because dream experiences are transpersonal as well as personal, and because thoughts are actions that can reach people at a distance, I like to think that the healing power of my dream reached my old adversary as well, and did him some good.

Since dreaming can also be time travel, it is not impossible that such healing power could be transferred back to younger selves in their own time.

My men’s room dream did not start as a lucid dream in the sense of being one of those dreams in which you know you are dreaming. The scene in the men’s room was absolutely real to me, as were the irruption into the scene and the subsequent energetic transformations of my old enemy. My dream self may not have been “lucid” by current definitions, but he was fully conscious in a more important sense. He was fully aware that, in a conflicted situation, he had the power of choice.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Richelle

    very interesting , as most of my “bad” dreams take place in the bathroom. It wasnt until i had the courage to relieve/purge myself during the dream time or waking life in some form or other that the dreams stopped.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Janice

    Hi, Robert. . . In my dream of your dream, what comes to mind is one of my favorite insights from A Course in MIracles: “Every thought is received by the body.” The symbolism of vomiting nails and rusty tacks, certainly is validating. Another thought from A Course in Miracles suggests that all attack is a call for love. I can see this in this dream, too, Robert, in the symbolism of the man’s transformation from demon to a pink, innocent baby.

    Thanks for sharing!

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