A few nights ago I had a dream. The key detail I recall from the dream was my father appeared. Now, my actual father passed away about eighteen months ago and in the dream I seemed so aware of this. I was overjoyed at his appearance, yet puzzled. I asked him, “How can you be dead yet here at the same time?” My father held me close and I cried. Then I awoke, in tears – a mixture of sadness and joy.
When analysing dreams, one of the critical things to remember is this. A dream is essentially your subconscious using people (and images such as landscapes, animals, objects) to address issues you find hard to deal with in the real world – in other words, the cold light of day. It’s very common for your subconscious mind to use people you know and love to make certain points to you. Why? it grabs your attention and often you have an unmistakably emotional response – often enough to wake you from your sleep and recall the dream in the most vivid detail.
However, when you’re wondering what the dream was about, you need to remember a very important point. You’re not dreaming about the person you’ve just seen. You’re dreaming about you. Figures we see in our dreams, whether we know them or not, are archetypes generated by our subconscious. They represent the cast of characters who act out our inner world and whose dramatic lives inform our own complex character.
So, what has my dream – or anyone else’s dream for that matter – got to do with astrology? Well, a lot. In dream analysis – just as in astrology – we use archetypal figures to represent the essential nature of what it is to be a human being. And every dream you have will be about one particular human being – yourself. In my dream my father represented not himself, but me. Regardless of who we are, we all possess our own internalised archetypal father figure. In astrological terms, our archetypal father is represented by the most important celestial body in our astrological chart – the Sun.
When I analysed my dream one thing stood out. The relief and happiness I felt when my father came back to me. Of course, I would be delighted if my actual father was still alive, but that’s not what this dream was about. My feelings of happiness were from being reunited with my own inner father – and therefore reconnecting with my own power. The message was clear. I had been failing to express my own power – the power of my Sun Sign. Did this mean I had been failing to take charge of my life in a conscious and mindful way? The answer could only be yes.
In the dream – just before my father appeared – I had been curled up in bed like a child next to my mother. In dream analysis, maternal figures represent our comfort zone – just as the Moon does in astrology. The Moon is instinctive and subconscious and it’s often easier for us to act out our Moon Sign than our Sun Sign. Why is that?
The answer is simple. It’s far easier for us to follow the line of least resistance offered to us by the Moon. The Moon represents the things we gravitate towards naturally – always without any conscious decision to do so. Moon things ‘feel’ right – even if they are not necessarily so. For example, we may feel like lying in bed all day – but the right thing to do is get up and go to work! The best life hack, of course, is to get the Sun and Moon working together – like a good marriage – and this is not always easy as many of us know.
This is where dreams can be useful. Their symbolism is direct and free of the mental clutter we need to clear away before we can get a good perspective on life. In my dream, I got out of the bed and made the space I had vacated available for my father. It’s a simple image but very compelling. I needed to make space for my father – the Sun – to take his rightful place in my life and allow him to reclaim the place that was being occupied by my inner child.
It is a simple truth that our lives are a lot better if we let our inner adults run the show. Your inner mother – the Moon – is there to help you emotionally. Your Moon is where you go to shelter from life’s storms. It enables you to look after yourself and care for yourself and others. However, it’s your inner father – the Sun – who gives you the power to drive your life forward. The Sun gives you the courage to forge your own way in the world – however, the world is a daunting place and too many of us find it easier to run home to Mother Moon when times are tough.
That can, unfortunately, be habit forming and it’s easy to overlook, forget or simply ignore the inner resources we have – our inner Father, the Sun – to transform our lives for the better. Too often when we feel stuck or fearful about life it’s simply a sign we are relying on our Moon and are ignoring the power of our Sun. When this happens, it’s our dreams that guide us back towards the path of enlightenment. Once we understand what our dreams are telling us, we can use that information to break out of our self defeating habits and move forward with purpose and clarity.
Dream analysis together with the fundamental principles of Astrology work well together to achieve the insight we need. In my case, I needed to to be reminded to make space for – and reclaim – the powers of my Sun. This is the only way to move your life in the direction you want it to go. Sometimes people, you need to learn you’re never too old to do what your father is telling you to do. After all, you can’t cling to your mother all your life.
© Sara Shipman 2019