6 people attend and present 12 dreams. One attendee asks about confidentiality and it is explained that only dreams are recorded, not details of dreamers. As the social dreaming event occurs in a public space, normal conventions of confidentiality cannot be observed.
1. A dream in childhood of being picked up by gusts of wind – wearing an open duffle coat so that the gusts take him up into the air.
2. Another participant refers to having many pleasant floating dreams – she loves flying and associates this to liberation.
3. She dreams about ships – loving ships and drawing tall ships or galleons and climbing the rigging. She describes a wall of water and indicates with her hands the dimension of the water, what is in it and behind it.
4. A dream of last night. She says that she ‘visualizes’ to help herself go to sleep – normally she visualizes landscapes horizontally, but because she is sleeping in Tent City that is surrounded by tall buildings, she visualises vertically – at the top of the buildings there are other lovely buildings.
Association: There are associations to yesterday’s dream of a man looking at a model of a structure that looks like Tent City, but is also an ideal version of society –acknowledging that we create something new which in turn becomes institutionalized and so the cycle continues – that is associated with floating.
5. A dream about attending hospital for a blood test – she’s frightened about what the results might mean. It could be life threatening. She’s trying to keep a brave face and is supported by a group of women friends but she feels like she’s alone with it.
6. She presents another dream about her 8 year old son whom she discovers in the dream is addicted to serious drugs – she is horrified that she did not know this and feels at a loss about what to do about this.
Association: There are associations to the unique worries of a parent – not being aware of one’s child being addicted to drugs; a dream where a son had challenged the father and the father had felt himself to be a disappointing father – relates to the disappointing social systems that do not provide care.
7. A member says he doesn’t agree with what’s going on here – here in the workshop? – no, in Tent City – he offers a dream about witnessing homosexual acts – he doesn’t recognise himself or anyone else in the dream, but he says he is a writer and he was writing about homosexual activity and he thought that might be the reason for the dream. He doesn’t agree with Tent City because society, politics and finance – the pre-occupations of Tent City – are external and our problems are concerned with the spiritual. When pressed, he says that you can’t change society from outside; you have to start from within. We get stuck with ourselves, the way we relate and how we engage – I’m not talking about you, he says, I’m talking about we and I know – I’m like that too – greedy – it’s not just the bankers that are greedy and he references the taking of too many bananas from the ‘Nazi kitchen’ – resentful of their monitoring and watchfulness and rules. He quotes evolution and saying that humankind has been trying to sort out social problems in a particular way for thousands of years and we still haven’t learned the lessons; we repeat our mistakes.
8. Two further dreams where the man is working with someone whom he thought he knew and they were waiters in a hotel and they weren’t sure where they should be going with the dishes. He is worried about the boss and then there is a car which they had messed up that he had to clean and he was getting bossy with his friends and when they wanted to drive off he was recriminating them for doing that – like the kitchen getting bossy with people in Tent City – its not the rules, but acting responsibly in relation to commitments one makes.
9. He told another dream which was about being high or drunk at a party – leaving it and then seeing the police at the house and policing and he laughed because he knew he wasn’t involved.
Association – to authority figures in both these dreams and the way at one point the dreamer becomes the authority himself, suggesting that the differences between social figures of authority and personal authority get confused.
10. A new dream – she is going to marry a man living here at Tent City – she likes him and goes to his classes – but she doesn’t find him attractive and she is wondering about marrying him. She says perhaps he would grow on her because there is a ‘good skills match’, but he lives in a tent and then she thought “I might have to have sex and I don’t do sex anymore”. She went on to talk about her neighbour who is very shallow and wants her partners to be economically sound even though she herself isn’t. Dreamer tells her neighbor that she is shallow and she knows that the dream indicates her own shallowness and possibly that of Tent City too.
Association: connected to shallowness which had come up yesterday – Tent City protest has been described as shallow and that had aroused strong feelings.
There was another association to the idea of the two dreams – one about the homosexual acts and the marriage where she doesn’t do sex and the fact that in both there is no future – no child to be born – a reference to the doubts expressed about the effectiveness of the protest – not changing anything, no continuity.
11. The final dream isn’t a dream, but a recurring nightmare where the individual is chased through her house which she associates to being her body and going up to the attic (her mind) and trying to get away and ending up feeling like she has no choice but to jump out and then she wakes up screaming – she links this to being raped as a child while the police watch and do nothing because of the abuser’s power and import. Her parents didn’t do anything because of that too and here abuser is still in her life and bigger than ever. She describes her neurosis and the fact that she had to get help because of her need to clean relentlessly.
12. A waking dream was offered of the creation of a musical which would be taken to the West End, Broadway and made into a film and a request for help from the facilitator.
The woman who reported the nightmare asked specifically what she should do.
Associations: Buddhists are not helpful and similarly the idea of karma is difficult because in it, the victim is considered responsible for their victimhood.
‘I’ becoming ‘we’ – turning individual experiences of dreams into group experiences and developing meaning for the collective – the rape of the child extrapolating to the raping of society – a cry from a seemingly desperate person at the door of the tent – “the Government is taking everything from us!” – and the different types of intercourse that we’ve talked about – reproductive, recreational and violent. One member talks about social intercourse and the use of language which can be socially enhancing or destructive and hurtful, and might also be like an action.
The group is smaller today and the facilitators are learning from our own experience about the importance to the task of staying with dreams and not go into side discussions. There is a more grounded feel to the group – there were no new first timers – all have previous experience of the SDE and one of them is going to facilitate the Saturday session. A reasonable depression – realism – is present. The aspiration is about a musical – ‘the idea of changing the world is nonsense’ – “it’s about moving up another level to learn about our roles in the evolution of ourselves.”
A participant says she read the blog and she likes it very much – “well-written and describes concisely exactly what goes on here.” She encourages others to read it.
Facilitators: Sarah Miller and Mannie Sher