Sansaku: It’s a Pull, Not a Push
If dreams deal with the repressed, and Freud tells us they do, dreams also deal with wish fulfillment. We’re trying to remold reality nearer to the heart’s desire.
So what does a dog dream of? Freud suggests the dog is chasing rabbits and gnawing bones. But what chases the dog in his dreams? How does the dog symbolize his humans, that relationship?
There are two sides to the dynamic, and the descriptors are endless: positive/negative, good/bad, pleasant/painful, wanted/feared. Without this polarity, it’s mostly entropy and nothing much happens. We don’t care. It’s not emotionally meaningful to us.
When Muriel said, “We’re a mirrored reflection of the ways our parent’s saw us,” I knew I needed to ponder it. Some sentences are pregnant, but we’ve got to see it through. Only then, does the child, the new being come to birth.
Think about this primal mirror; it’s as magic as it gets. We have many hopes and needs, wants and fears, idealized and otherwise. And if they are mirroring us, what do we project?
Freud said that the events and happenings of the day triggered our infantile fears and desires. Just like “Rosebud,” in “Citizen Kane,” childhood holds a secret and a key. But that’s just the start.
We forget how the boss becomes the critical or idealized parent. Now suddenly regressed, the repressed child returns. And what happens when we become the boss?
Freud said, we would always be struggling with this dynamic in life, and the best we could do was to accept and understand the terms of this struggle. We are trying to make the unconscious conscious. The more we uncover, the more we find is there. No analysis is complete.
Just as St. Augustine denied responsibility for his dreams, we have elaborative, highly symbolic, and bizarre ways of defending against these elementary fears and desires. But here’s the good news: we can deal with them, grow with them, and consciously evolve.
In this way, dreams take what is manifest – the outer events of the day, the experience, and recasts them in the dream content. The content, less defended and repressed, reveals the underlying latent meaning. It shows us where we are and where we need to go.
Again, there’s a rub, we don’t just repress all that is dark and dangerous, but also what is most divine in us. “It’s our brilliance we fear.” Dare we glimpse who we are deepest down in our soul?
I’m going to define repression in terms very similar to the Jungian shadow. It’s what we can know and should know, but haven’t. It’s all those parts to our selves, which we’ve forgotten or haven’t yet realized.
When you try not to think about an elephant, you’ll understand why repressions do not work. The more we try not to think about something, the more stuck we get.
This is the psychological impasse, and it’s where the action takes place. It’s what happens when you won’t take no for an answer. So long as you push, so long as you resist and defend, the door won’t open. It’s a pull, not a push. Say, yes, and what else am I missing.