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The Origins of Dream Analysis

The Origins of Dream Analysis

The dream world is a fascinating place and one where the modern psychic can seek answers and guidance. 

This concept dates back to the primitive tribesman. Often existing betwixt the dream world and the waking world, dreams offered early man guidance towards life’s purpose and destiny. Native American and Mexican civilizations received visitations from ancestors in dreams. The ancient Egyptians believed dreams to be messages from the gods.

Guided by dreams

In Greek and Roman antiquity, dreams were an important part of society and cultural identity. The Greeks built Asclepieions, temples for physical and spiritual healing. During incubado, or ‘temple sleep’, divine messages would offer a cure or a priest would interpret to find a remedy. In Roman times, dream divination and prediction (oneiromancy) were useful in offering guidance to military leaders and healers.

Biblical warnings

In biblical times, dreams offered protection, as in Matthew 2:12, “And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.” There is evidence from the early Christian writers, such as St. Augustine (354 AD-430 AD), that dream symbolism took on a more demonic appearance, with nocturnal seductions by incubi to men (and by succubi to women).

Modern studies

As centuries passed, superstition and religion were replaced by reasoning and laws of science. Freud’s studies of dream interpretation emerged in the late nineteenth century, reviving interest in dreams and their importance. Freud’s contemporaries believed that dreams were neither mystical nor prophecies, but merely a reaction to internal physiological sensations or external stimuli.

Freud found that behind every dream there is wish fulfillment. He concluded, “The ancient belief that dreams reveal the future is not indeed entirely devoid of the truth. By representing a wish as fulfilled the dream certainly leads us into the future; but this future, which the dreamer accepts as his present, has been shaped in the likeness of the past by the indestructible wish.” 

Interpretations could be found by the use of associations, with much of dream material arising from the unconscious. Freud focused on symbolism such as knives, sticks, umbrellas, tree trunks, neckties, and even hats, as being connected to primal and sensual urges. Jung had a more spiritual approach to dream analysis than his mentor. He believed that dreams allowed a window to the unconscious, therefore offering solutions in waking reality and a guide to reach full potential.

Whether we believe that dreams are divine messages or reveal secrets of the soul, offer insight into the unconscious, or are an expression of suppressed emotion, their interpretation and possible meanings are continually intriguing.

With nearly two decades as a professional psychic and thousands of readings under her belt, Free Spirit has devoted her life to psychic work and the study of esoteric topics. She’s advised on haunted houses and paranormal problems, helped people find lost objects and lost pets and offered open-minded yet straightforward psychic counseling. Free Spirit is skilled in a variety of tools, like oracle cards, angel cards, crystal ball scrying, and more.


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