In my opinion, napping is a Spiritual discipline. Today was a rainy dreary day – perfect for an afternoon nap. I had a dream during my nap. Perhaps napping should be honored by its own post – in this post, I’ll stick to dreams.
My dream was disturbing. I entered an old building. Its walls were plain white unadorned and showed signs of aging. The halls were wide and dark. I walked down the hall to the left. I walked past one door on the left. That door was propped slightly open. There was a dim light shining through the crack. There was a man lying on the floor bleeding from the gunshot wound in his back – having lost the amount of blood pooled on the floor around him, I assume he was dead.
I entered the door at the end of the hallway. It was a hotel room or an apartment. I walked down the hall to the right. There were lots of room with several beds in each room – the bedding was burgundy. My cousins were in the various rooms lying in the beds. It was night. I walked through all the rooms looking at who was where. Then, I walked into the bathroom and lay down in the bathtub.
I doubt that this particular entry in my dream journal is significant. I had fallen asleep watching the movie “Munich” and had chatted with my cousin earlier in the afternoon. I know that the hotel and dead man were from the movie and my cousins from the afternoon conversation. The only message from this dream is: don’t fall asleep watching violent movies…maybe.
This type of analysis of dreams is necessary as we discern our spirit’s connection to the Spirit of God in our sleep. Here’s how you begin interpreting your dreams.
Dream. That seems pretty easy, but many things can interfere with sleep. If you’re not dreaming, talk to your physician. You don’t necessarily need to remember a dream from every night. I am not a medical doctor; however, if you haven’t had a dream in months, you might have a problem.
Get a journal and a pen to put on your night stand. Each time you wake up, grab your tools and jot down every detail you remember. The plot is as important as the details of your dream. I have heard that it is unusual to dream in color. You may not see the color but you may have a sense that a particular item was a color. Numbers are significant, too.
Think about what has happened recently in your life and how events, conversations, media, etc. could have affected your dream. For example, the movie and my cousin were the source of the dream that I recorded earlier in this post. Some dreams are completely the product of your mind processing life. I once read that your mind must purge useless details (which end up in your dreams) in order to file away the important stuff in your memory. Separate your ‘trash’ from relevant details of your dream. Though, the two might be entangled.
Now, its time to interpret the rest of your dream details. There are several tools you can use to interpret your dreams. First, I search the Scriptures for references to each detail. I use the tools at Bible Gateway. This and other online Scripture sites make it easy to find Biblical references to whatever you’re searching for – though, you won’t find a bath tub or hotel room.
Next, I use web sites devoted to dream symbols. I’ve used Dream Moods for years. It draws on the work of Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud. I also refer to the work of Edgar Cayce. These three men are likely the most well-known dream theorists. You can search for symbols in the dictionaries on these sites. They also have information about dreaming, interpreting dreams, and common dreams.
Now, you have a compilation of interpreted symbols within a plot. There are no hard and fast rules for interpreting our dreams. Unfortunately, we don’t all have a Joseph in a coat of many colors to come interpret our dreams for us. You may have to sit with the information for a couple days before the message emerges from your interpreted symbols.
Remember that I attributed my dream to a movie and talking to my cousin. After looking at their symbolism in the dream dictionaries, these particular details might have been memorable from my dream because of my emotional life in response to a particular life situation. Now, I have to determine what role my family will play in this time of transition.
May you find rest in your sleep,