The theories behind dreaming
People have been studying dreams since the dawn of time. It was mentioned in the bible (‘Joseph and his dream coat’). Elias Howe, inventor of the sewing machine, dreamt up his invention in his sleep one night in 1844.
Mozart first heard his melodies in his dreams and Robert Louis Stevenson got his story of ‘Dr Jekell and Mr. Hyde’ from a dream.
Books on dream interpretations date as far back as 2070 BC.
Sigmund Freud (born in 1865) came to the conclusion that physical illness could be cured by the exploration of dreams. Dreams were a way of releasing trauma. He also theorised that dreams were a way of fulfilling repressed desires. He thought that a lot of objects and symbols in dreams were sexual in meaning (e.g. a pencil really being a penis).
I think that there is a lot of substance to his work, but because he was living in a sexually repressed Victorian era, I personally do think he put too much emphasis on dreams always having to have a sexual connotation.
Carl Jung, a doctor, developed different theories on dreaming. He said that the purpose of dreaming was to unite your conscious with your unconscious and that through them you can express parts of yourself that are normally repressed in real life and that there are many symbols which represent your mother, child, hero (everyone subconsciously wants a hero in their life), the shadow (the dark side of your personality), and the wise old man figure, which represents your father or spiritual guru, or the masculine side of yourself (which women have too).
I find Freud and Jung’s work fascinating, but personally in my opinion it still doesn’t explain prophetic dreams, which have occurred for thousands of years.
I have included interpretations in this book, based upon Freud and Jung and dream researcher Gustavus Hindman Miller as they are pioneers of dream theories, but I have also included some more modern interpretations from a more spiritual perspective and from my own knowledge of prophetic dreaming.