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Carl Jung on Dreams

July 29, 2010 on 11:08 am | In Dream Research, Dreamwork, History and Beliefs, Interpreting Dreams | No Comments

Another expert in the field of dreams and dream interpretation was Carl Jung. Jung studied under the tutelage of Sigmund Freud. Their differing views on dreams and dream interpretations led to a permanent rift that led them to go their separate ways.

Like Freud, Jung believed in the existence of the unconscious. However, he didn’t see the unconscious as animalistic, instinctual, and sexual; he saw it as more spiritual. Dreams were a way of communicating and acquainting ourselves with the unconscious.

To Jung, dreams were not attempts to conceal our true feelings from the waking mind; they were a window to our unconscious.
They served to guide the waking self to achieve wholeness. 

To Jung, dreams offered a solution to a problem we are facing in our waking life. Jung viewed the ego as one’s sense of self and how we portray ourselves to the world. 

Part of Jung’s theory was that all things can be viewed as paired opposites (i.e. good/evil, male/female, or love/hate). And thus working in opposition to the ego, is the “counter-ego” or what he referred to as the shadow.

The shadow represents rejected aspects of yourself that you do not wish to acknowledge. It is considered an aspect of yourself which is somewhat more primitive, uncultured, and awkward.

Jung said, “Dreams are the main source of all of our knowledge about symbolism.” He meant that the messages you receive from your dreams are expressed symbolically and must be interpreted to find their true meanings.

In his writings, Jung says that rarely do the symbols in dreams have just one meaning. And when interpreting the messages in your dreams, he suggests going with your first hunch, relying on your intuitive abilities, before applying more rational methods of dream interpretation.

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