Dreams Department

Please remember, this column is designed to help the consumer seeking behavioral-health information, and not intended to be any form of psychotherapy or a replacement for professional, individualized services. Opinions expressed in the column are those of the columnist and do not represent the position of other staff.


Often I have a dream where I am at a Japanese steakhouse where they cook the food right in front of our eyes. I only see the cook cooking shrimp behind a flood of steam. All of a sudden, one of the shrimp jumps up and has very long legs. He is really an ostrich! He hops out of view and I wake up. Am I a freak?


Magical transformations (or transmogrification) can seem really freaky, but are quite common in dreams. The early ideas on these transformations come from Freud who felt that was just one of the ways the imagination worked to fool us about what the dream was really about. But later analysts and contemporary dreamworkers also see that these transformations are opportunities to *join* the imagination in its quest to make our lives more wonderful and profound.

For example:
If this were my dream I might ask myself what shrimpy ideas people are trying to serve me when I really want to feast on some projects in life that can really take off running like a ostrich. The meaning of your dream can only be known by you, but if this were my dream, I would see the ostrich not only as a bird who can run fast and stick its head in the ground, but can really lay some big nourishing ideas and has a *view* of the underground that others tend to miss. Others may see this as freaky, but I will be more satisfied than if I kept quiet and just dined on shrimp.


Richard Wilkerson is general editor for The Internet Dream E-zine, Electric Dreams, and director of DreamGate, the Internet Communications and Dream Education Center. He writes the Cyberphile column for the Association for the Study of Dreams Newsletter.


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