Imagery and Dreaming
Almost 2 weeks have gone by since I came back from Europe and I still do not feel settled. 6 cities and 4 Imagery workshops in 4 weeks, and used up inks of 3 pens and a whole notebook…. there were a lot to take in. It was definitely a profound experience of inner transformation, and a privilege to learn from our dear teacher Catherine Shainberg and the fellow dreamers. Classmates that I have known through their voices from online classes the past 2 years have taken shape and become real life friends. Images I see from the inside also appear in reality. So what is this frenzy attraction that is worthy for staying up at 3am or travelling to another continent just to attend to class?
How do you know yourself? 1. By looking yourself in the mirror (or any mirror images) or. 2. You experience yourself. Catherine said, “You are dreaming yourself into shape.” Our bodies are our subconscious, and both bodies and subconscious communicate in dream language, i.e. images. Our dreaming including the night dreams are our bodies speaking to us. Our bodies (or forms) today are the results of our parents and ancestors dreaming together. We can decide to change this dream or to live with it. By using images (the dream language) to repair our bodies, we repair and change the original dream of our family lineage.
I have been thinking what Catherine said the past few days, “When you are in the form of a victim, you attract bullies.” We know our own forms through our mirror images (be they the outer/inner mirror or the people and outer reality around us). Our forms are not static, neither our dreaming. We change our forms by shapeshifting in our images to experience different possibilities. How does one look and feel being a rose? Being a calm then stormy sea? Being the face of death or the face of life? Being your partner whom you are angry with, but upon “wearing” him on and look through his eyes at yourself, does it change things? We change our forms when we change our ways of looking at things/people. Our bodies are a repository of all memories, an emotion is always being triggered either by an image or a memory. Using the same principle: when an emotion arises, we can look in and see where/when a memory is tied to this emotion. Using images to repair and shape-shift in different perspective inside that memory, you can actually change your memory and shift your emotions and forms.
What is Imagery?
It is a fast, holographic, and non-linear way of looking in. It is not therapeutic, but revelatory. It is not to be confused with meditation. Each imagery exercise is designed to jolt your subconscious, and your inside will always show you what you really are. The aim of this practice is not to heal, but to open up possibilities. I can speak through my own experience. I used to carry loads of traumatic memories of my childhood, hence I have experienced many health challenges (such as eczema) caused by pent-up emotions. I defined myself as victim, grim, and melancholic. Through industrious imagery practice the past 2 years, I no longer feel much emotions when I look back at past memories. In fact, many forgotten and new happy memories have come forth, and I define myself and my life in a completely different way. I guess my form has changed and I do see the faces and things around me have changed accordingly as well.
What is the difference between Imagery and Dreaming?
Dreams always show you exactly where you are at: they show you the root of the issue (the diagnosis) and very often the clues for cure (remedy) as well. We use imagery to repair night dreams, or to travel into the different possibilities, into where you aspire to be.
We learnt from the Fairy Tales workshop that “it is not enough to see the image, you need to pursue it!”. It is how magic/revelation becomes reality. By having COURAGE, which is “Le Rage du Coeur”—— “the rage of the heart” in French; anchored with desire, we allow creativity and possibilities to come in.