Dream Analysis

Life is But a Dream

To die, to sleep—

to sleep, perchance to dream—ay, there’s the rub,

for in this sleep of death what dreams may come…

- William Shakespeare, Hamlet

For Jung (1969), the most important way to approach the unconscious was through dream interpretation and analysis.  The dream in this respect operates on the same principle as free word association as the dream is the only unedited information that comes directly from the deep psyche. Jung encouraged his patients to allow fantasy to help them work or discover the theme of their dreams, which helped give them access to their ‘inner voice.’  By using the dream as the bridge back to the unconscious, Jung noticed the unfolding of the conscious process, which led to the individuation process.

The result of this technique was a vast number of complicated designs whose diversity puzzled me for years, until I was able to recognize that in this method I was witnessing the spontaneous manifestation of an unconscious process which was merely assisted by the technical ability of the patient, and to which I later gave the name “individuation process.” (Jung, p. 202)

In addition there are little and big dreams, significant and insignificant dreams, and some dreams simply from the subjective realm.  Then there are those significant dreams that we will remember forever, and these are the dreams that contain mythic symbolism and archetypes.  In fact, these are the dreams that lead to the individuation process.