Friday, February 19, 2016

Recent Presentation

Last week, I spoke to 200 counselors at the Rio Grande Valley Counseling Association's annual Counselors Institute on Padre Island, titled "Using Dreamwork to Accelerate Healing and Support Emerging Competencies in Your Counseling Practice."   The audio can be listened to here. Please forgive the repetition of my favorite joke that illustrates the problem of our preconceived views about dreams.



Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Importance of Situated Awareness

I had a non-lucid dream last week, sandwiched between two nights of lucid dreaming, which impacted me more deeply that any other dream in the past few months.

In the dream, it was raining and the streets were flooded. A line of cars were parked ahead of me, and people were outside in the rain, praying the Hail Mary. I walked up and joined them in prayer. Turning around, I looked up toward the south, and saw hundreds of tiny clouds creating the shape of a man with his arms outstretched. I was awed and puzzled, not sure if it was natural or supernatural. Then, to the west, a disc the size of several suns appeared and began to spin slowly, drawing into itself the cloud shape that was moving toward it. The disc became more visually sharp, and looked more spherical than flat. Suddenly, the disc broke open like an egg, and a bright white flower emerged and descended slowly toward the world.

I love this dream. And the fact that I wasn't lucid was actually a blessing. Why? Because there was no thought that this "wasn't real." In other words, it had maximum emotional impact precisely because I believed it was real.

I have spoken on the importance of situated vs. non-situated awareness. I argue in a presentation that I gave not long ago that true integration of "the other" within us requires an encounter between autonomous entities, of which we (the dream ego) is one. If we do not believe that an encounter is real or actual, then how can we experience the encounter as a relationship? Tarnas says in The Passion of the Western Mind that a true relationship depends on for an autonomous, reciprocal exchange between freely responding persons. And how is that possible if we experience the "other" in the dream as illusory or self-created. 

I have posted that presentation audio somewhere on my server, and I will link it here shortly, in case this topic interests you.

I'm Back

I think they must call it "blog guilt"--when you haven't written an entry for so long that you wonder if people think you're dead.  Ken Wilber invented a related term,  which he termed "neogenic guilt," or New Age guilt--which is the not-so-exquisite experience of believing that you create your own reality, and thus must assume the blame for whenever you get sick, or run into s--- happening.

I started a new online training/personal dream group last night with five dreamers spread across the US.  I've been using Zoom videoconferencing for all kinds of meetings, and it's just perfect for online group dream work. The purpose of the 10-week group is to learn co-creative dream analysis, and to practice with each other's dreams. 


I just received the cover image for a new book that will be published this spring, for which I wrote a chapter. Edited by my colleagues and friends Stan Krippner and Jacquie Lewis (both of Saybrook Institute), I am honored to be the fine company of 13 other chapter authors, who present a particular traditional or contemporary approach to dream theory/practice.  The title of my chapter is, "The FiveStar Method: Using Co-creative Dream Analysis in Psychotherapy."








  I've just launched a new podcast, titled DreamStar Institute Presents "Dreamwork with Dr. Scott Sparrow." My first episode i...