To further help you in
uncovering the meaning of your dreams, Jung noted certain dream symbols that
possess the same universal meaning for all men and women. He terms this
phenomenon the "collective unconscious". While dreams are personal,
your personal experiences often touch on universal themes and symbols. These
symbols are believed to occur in every culture throughout
Jung identifies seven such symbols in what is
referred to as the major archetypal characters:
The Persona is the image you present to the world in
your waking life. It is your public mask. In the dream world, the persona
is represented by the Self. The Self may or may not resemble you
physically or may or may not behave as your would. For example, the persona can
appear as a scarecrow or a beggar in your dream. However, you still know that
this "person" in your dream is you.
The Shadow is the rejected and repressed aspects of
yourself. It is the part of yourself that you do not want the world to see
because it is ugly or unappealing. It symbolizes weakness, fear, or anger. In
dreams, this figure is represented by a stalker, murderer, a bully, or pursuer.
It can be a frightening figure or even a close friend or relative. Their
appearance often makes you angry or leaves you scared. They force you to
confront things that you don't want to see or hear. You must learn to accept the
shadow aspect of yourself for its messages are often for your own good, even
though it may not be immediately apparent.
The Anima / Animus is the female and male aspects of
yourself. Everyone possess both feminine and masculine qualities. In dreams, the
anima appears as a highly feminized figure, while the animus appears as a hyper
masculine form. Or you may dream that you are dressed in women's clothing, if
you are male or that you grow a beard, if you are female. These dream imageries
appear depending on how well you are able to integrate the feminine and
masculine qualities within yourself. They serve as a
reminder that you must learn to acknowledge or express your masculine (be more
assertive) or feminine side (be more emotional).
The Divine Child is your true self in its
purest form. It not only symbolizes your innocence, your sense of vulnerability,
and your helplessness, but it represents your aspirations and full potential.
You are open to all possibilities. In the dreamscape, this figure is represented
by a baby or young child.
The Wise Old Man /Woman is the helper in
your dreams. Represented by a teacher, father, doctor, priest or some other
unknown authority figure, they serve to offer guidance and words of wisdom. They
appear in your dream to steer and guide you into the right direction.
The Great Mother is the nurturer. The Great Mother
appears in your dreams as your own mother, grandmother, or other nurturing
figure. She provides you with positive reassurance. Negatively, they may be
depicted as a witch or old bag lady in which case they can be associated with
seduction, dominance and death. This juxtaposition is rooted in the belief
by some experts that the real mother who is the giver of life is also at the
same time jealous of our growth away from her.
The Trickster, as the name implies, plays
jokes to keep you from taking yourself too seriously. The trickster may appear
in your dream when you have overreach or misjudge a situation. Or he could find
himself in your dream when you are uncertain about a decision or about where you
want to go in life. The trickster often makes you feel uncomfortable or
embarrassed, sometimes mocking you or exposing you to your
vulnerabilities. He may take on subtle forms, sometimes even changing its shape.
dreams, also refer to as "mythic dreams", "great dreams" or
"grand dreams", usually occur at significant times or transitional
periods in your life. They often leave you with a sense of awe or that you have
learned something important about yourself. Such dreams have a cosmic quality or
an element of impossibility if occurred in reality. They are often extremely
vivid and stay in your mind long after you had the dream.