Wednesday, May 22, 2013

When the panther has your scent

Hameau de l"Etoile, near Montpellier

At breakfast time today, a group of us were sitting comfortably with our bowls of cereal, our plates of cheese and fresh baguette, and our tea and coffee in front of the low burning fire in the great hearth, sharing dreams and other experiences from the night.
   One woman told me, "I have no dreams."
   "Then you must make up a story immediately," I told her.
   After only a moment's hesitation, she produced a fine adventure story involving a "corsair" seeking a treasure in a deep cave that turned out to resemble a child's marble. The story maker agreed to let her story be used as a script for improv theater in our morning session, and we are eager to see the plot development and many levels of meaning that may emerge as others bring their imaginations and body language into the role playing.
   Another woman in the group shared a fresh dream in which she was lugging an immense crate of hot water bottles - full of hot water - around a residential complex that she knows. Exhausted by carrying all this weight, she threw one of the hot water bottles down some stairs. Immediately a splendid panther appeared. She froze, realizing she was in the presence of a dangerous and possibly hungry predator, then turned sideways.
    She now realized that the turn was a wrong move. In presenting her flank, she had placed herself in the posture of a game animal, something the panther might treat as food. She turned back  to face the panther head-on, standing upright, willing herself not to show or emit fear.
    She felt the danger recede, and now a panther cub came up the stairs to stand with the full-grown big cat.
    She woke with a sense of great curiosity and high anticipation. In discussion, she revealed that she had met the panther in previous dreams, and that there has been an interesting progression. In earlier dreams, a panther had attacked her. Then she dreamed they were looking in each other's eyes. Now she is claiming her ground and the panther cub emerges. If it were my dream (I suggested) I would think that the panther in me is emerging. It is not yet full grown but it has room to grow. And it will help me to manage my energy and make sure that there is a fair energy exchange in what I do. I may be a compassionate and caring person, but the panther in my soul won't let me lug around all those hot water bottles, endlessly available to serve the needs of others.
     We saw how dreams often need to be read as a series. But of course dreams are not simply texts to be read, but powers to be embodied. Asked for an action plan to honor her visitation, the dreamer announced that she would climb a tree; she had already demonstrated she is good at this. i suggested it would be okay to leave claw marks. She also said she might now be willing to eat some meat, to feed the panther in her (not the human, who eschews meat).
    Her intention before sleep the previous night had been to access more of her creative spirit. What came was the panther, dangerous and beautiful. Once again we see how the big powers - the big stories - are hunting the right people to carry them.


James Wilson said...

That sounds like a nice dream full of energy and magic. Flowing water, heat and a Panther.
And water that turns in a magical way in to a Panther. Wonderfull dream.

Barbara Butler McCoy said...

This is intriguing. Since the woman's dream is set in a residential complex I am curious about the symbolism of the bottled hot water. We often speak of bottling things up and avoiding or landing in 'hot water.' If this were my dream I would consider it from a daily angle like that, as well, which might further define the rising of the panther and her cub from lower levels. Isn't the panther a symbol of the feminine, so, auspicious for a woman?

Nigel said...

Dear Robert, here is a dream I had recently which, I think, has correspondences with the panther dream. The dream was perhaps a nightmare as I experienced some fear, but I think in fact it is helpful and transformative, with the possibility of unleashing new creativity (note: the small dog, analogous to the panther cub). Also there is a connection with an "office", perhaps reflecting a current challenging work environment where I have had to stand up for myself. Anyway, here is the dream, and any thoughts you might have would be welcome:

"I was with my sister and we were watching an old movie of when we were kids. The two of us were playing when a black/grey wolf’s head appeared in the front of the screen. It said in a threatening deep voice “why won’t you face me”? On the screen it then began to chase the childhood version of myself into the distance, with the child running away. There was also a small dog which started chasing both of them. The screen-watcher self said: the dog is trying to help him. There were then some indoor scenes (some type of office building) with people walking around, looking intimidating."

Kind regards, Nigel

James Wilson said...

Hi Nigel, if this was my dream I would begin with asking myself which associations I have with the image of a black / grey wolf.
- do I attach a certain symbolic meaning to the animal the wolf.
- have I seen a wolf in the past, or the image of a wolf. And can this dream refer to this specific period in the past.
- can the wolf with the threatening deep voice refer to an event in my present time
- etc etc
The same with the childhood version of myself and my sister, the small dog and the office building

Maybe this start can give you a little more insight in your dream and directions on how to go further with your dream?

Nigel said...

Thanks James for your useful suggestions about my dream, which I will reflect upon further. I appreciate the fact that the dream was a little confronting and perhaps harder to work with than more inspiring and uplifting dreams (although I have thankfully also had this other kind as well). However, it is my view (which I think you share) that all dreams have something to offer, even the scary ones !

On this note, the dream has a prequel from my childhood when I was rescued from a similar beastie by my father.

There has just now been a dream sequel (last night) in which a black/grey FRIENDLY dog came up and licked my face, after which a sand coloured dog chewed playfully on my hand.

It suggests to me that when you start to confront your fears, be they internal or external or both, then positive change occurs as a result, perhaps resulting in a "power transfer" of the kind discussed in the context of the panther dream.

Thanks again James for your response, and my thanks to Robert for his insightful Blog (as well as outstanding book "The Three Only Things).

Kind regards


James Wilson said...

Hi Nigel, I agree with your view that all dreams have something to offer even the scary ones. And maybe especially the scare ones. Because they give you the opportunity to overcome something you fear.
I have read Roberts books: Dreaming True and Conscious Dreaming. If you want more advice on how to reflect on your dreams and work with your dreams you can find some useful information in them.

Nigel said...

Thanks James: it looks like we are on the same page here in relation to the value of scary dreams, although I do prefer the other kind TBH : )

Thanks also for the further book references: I'm looking forward to reading them and learning more.

I am back in Australia next year and wonder if Robert will be conducting any workshops in that Land Down Under in 2014 (in case you are in the know on this)?

Best regards, Nigel

James Wilson said...

Hi Nigel,
If you go to the main website you can find a calendar on the right side of the webpage.
Just click in the months to see when and where Robert gives a workshop in that month.

Nigel said...

Thanks James: unfortunately there is no information up for 2014 (I suppose it is just a matter of waiting until later in the year). Also, there were apparently no Robert Moss workshops in Australia in 2013.