While many would consider dream interpretation to be new age nonsense, there have been many great minds that have studied the significance of our dreams. And aside from Sigmond Freud, no one has influenced dream studies more than Carl Jung.
Of course, dream studies date back to 3000-4000 B.C, where dream interpretations were originally documented on tablets. Basically, as long as we have had the ability to communicate our dreams, we have strived and worked towards understanding them. However, it wasn’t until later that it became quite scientific.
Jung was a psychoanalyst from Zurich, Switzerland that was a friend and follower of Freud. However, as he worked closely with Freud, he also began to create his own notions and ideals regarding dreams and psychoanalysis. The two later separated, as Jung’s findings directly opposed Freud’s.
Basically, according to Jung, dreams reveal more than they make secret, and they are our imagination expressing itself through mythic narratives. While Freud maintained that dreams were designed to be secretive, Jung actively disagreed. Due to this, he also disagreed with Freud’s belief that our dreams are merely a release of our hidden sexual desires.
On the contrary, Jung believed that our dreams were actually an extension of our intuition and could be used to give us insight into our daily lives. Furthermore, he believed that people should analyze their own dreams, think about them, and meditate on them and work diligently to get information from them.
You see, dreams are involuntary actions of our unconscious mind that come together in symbols and pictures. In order to decipher those pictures, Jung used a method that was quite similar to that used to decipher regular symbols.
For example, while anyone could dream of a mother, the idea of a mother is different to each individual. With that being said, one person may envision a mother as a caring individual, while another may reconcile the image of a mother with an abusive figure. It all depends on the individual. However, each dream symbol must be understood in order to create a bigger picture. Going further, dreams can connect to one another and because of that, oftentimes, our dreams come together to create a much bigger picture.
Jung believed that our unconscious mind connected with our conscious mind during our dreams to bring us knowledge. He called them ‘psychic activity,’ and believed that they were quite significant. And I tend to agree with Jung, as when we go to sleep, our unconscious mind puts together a story with various pictures, thoughts, feelings, and unresolved situations. When broken apart, piece by piece, we can use these symbols to decipher our unconscious.