How to Analyze Your Child’s Dreams?
Someone asked the other day when I was doing a presentation on dreams to some young people if I thought that the books about dreams that tell you what each thing means are worth buying. I told her that it can be problematic because most books don’t teach you how to read a dream and then analyze it.
When I hear a dream, the first thing that I have to do is remember it. You may think that that part is easy, but the most often asked question about dreams is how they can be remembered after awakening. It took me a period of about 6 months of listening to dreams everyday before I could remember them after people told me them. So it is not a bad idea to write your dream down and go over it several times.
After I remember it, then I try to make it look something like a mathematical sentence where I take the various events and put them in order with one or two words. The reason it is important to do this step is because dream logic is different than real world logic. The dream logic is very elegant, but when people don’t understand it, they will say things like this dream is so random or this is a crazy dream or a meaningless one. If you put them in order, then you can start connecting the dots.
Here is a really interesting dream from a 5 year old girl. She told her mother this dream so the mother did the first thing correctly. She remembered the dream.
I was in a car. You were driving. There was a glass that separated us and you were in the back. I had hundreds of brothers and sisters with me. Our whole house was on top of the car. I went up on top of the house and could see a view all around.
To make the mathematical sentence it can look a little like this.
Car–driving (mom driving) —–Glass separation—- Hundreds of brothers and sisters in the car with her—— House on top of the car—– View all around.
So then the next step is find out where the positive and negative emotions exist in the sentence. In the above dream everything seems pretty positive except for the glass separation. The reason that you do the above step is because the work of the dream is to change the negatives into positives and then find a way to apply the positives in real life. If it is a child’s dream, then it is responsibility of the parents to find ways to put the child into the right environments and then guide their interactions in those environments so that the potentiality that is being called for in the dream can be actualized.
The next part of the process is to do a systematic analysis of each part of the sentence as if you were a mathematician trying to solve an equation. There are all kinds of interesting questions that the above dream could present which, depending on how much time you want to give it, can all be answered.
- What is the meaning of glass and what is separating the mother from the child?
- Why are the two in a car instead of something like a plane?
- Who are the hundreds of brothers and sisters in the back? Why is she with them?
- What is a house in a dream? Why is the house on top of the car?
- Why is it important for her to be on top of the house? What advantage does that give her?
- Why is it positive that the mother drives and not the child?
I will tell you that a house is the symbol of the self and cars are the way we get to where we want to go in our everyday life. Everything is good to take the time and meditate with the dream as it reveals itself. If the mother understands how powerful this dream is for the child’s future, and begins to give her opportunities to develop her potential, it will make a huge impact.
What is so beautiful about this process and this dream in particular is that it tells the mother what the child’s potential is and also the mother’s own personal work (eliminating the separation) so that she can facilitate the child’s development. What is extremely important to understand about being a parent, and this dream illustrates it so wonderfully, is that the actualization of your child’s key potentialities always requires transformation work on the part of the parents. The child’s important dreams will include elements of abilities that the parents have never had in themselves, but yet they are being asked to help their children develop them. There is no other way for parents other than to be in a constant of state of positive change so that they can keep up with the demands that the dreams bring them.