Several months ago we started studying dream incubation. We have examined several aspects of the topic. Now it is time to take the following question into consideration and see what the dream answers :
Does the unconscious always answer an incubation question ?
With the latest dreams we have seen that the unconscious doesn’t like to be asked questions repetitively. It accepts giving the desired information of course, but it will only give what it deems necessary. When we look at the dreams, it appears that the unconscious doesn’t always have the same point of view as us, concerning what we need to know or not.
Today, you will read an answer to an incubation dream, which is much harsher than the preceding one, because the dreamer is trying to exploit the unconscious to his own advantage.
The dreamer Arnaud is very worried because his wife is sick. However, what poses a problem to him is not the state of her health but rather he worries that she may no longer be able to work, and that means a loss of income. He calculates the family finances.
What he’s truly concerned about is not how he can help his wife or what kinds of treatments could cure her, but rather whether she will get money from a “paid” sick leave. He asks his dream to answer this question.
Dream: The Sovereign Cat.
I go into a “café”. There is a black cat in the middle of the hallway. I raise my leg to go over it. The cat lifts its head, glares at me…
I am paralyzed, I can’t put my leg over across the cat, I can’t go into the café.
It is the place where one can drink a black tonic beverage which wakes you up : coffee.
Last time we have seen a frequent meaning of coffee :
The beans of the coffee tree are the fruits representing the dream symbols which appear naturally. The dreamer collects them and the dream interpreter acts as a coffee bean roaster, a blender, a coffee machine, transforming the beans to obtain an universally appreciated drink : this black liquid which awakens is the interpreted dream.
The “café” represents the place, the moment when the dreamer makes contact with the unconscious through dream interpretation.
For Arnaud, in view of the question he asked, the setting, this “café” represents the place where he can geta dream interpreted and the desired information.
So Arnaud would like to get an answer thanks to an interpreted dream.
The black cat in the hallway.
The cat is a domesticated animal, which nonetheless retains a wild side.It lives in the home environment but can’t be trained. It is ferociously independent. It has the very rare ability to see in the dark, in the night.
It’s black color, like that of the coffee, expresses its link with the unconscious.
So what is the cat ?
This black cat is the way the unconscious chooses to present itself to the dreamer. When Arnaud goes into the “café” to get his dream interpreted and to know if his wife will receive a pension, first he comes across the cat, this natural instinct, the unconscious, which sees in the night and can never be trained.
This cat occupies the middle of the passageway, as if it were the master of the place, as if it were guarding its entrance.
I raise my leg to go over it.
Our friend wants to go in. He doesn’t pay any attention to the cat, he could acknowledge it :
- Oh ! Hello cat !
So he could write a letter and say :
- Dear dreams !
He could even bend down, pat the cat and say.
- Wow, you’re so beautiful! Could you let me go by ?
Would you please help me to see clearly our present financial situation ? Your information would allow us to plan ahead. Will my wife get a workman’s compensation ? Thank you very much for answering.
But no, Arnaud ignores the cat and wants to step over him. He wants to get his dream and the information without any consideration for the unconscious, as if Arnaud were master of the cat-unconscious.
The cat lifts its head and glares at me.
The cat/unconscious is indignant at this lack of consideration. Its anger is expressed by the fury of his glare. Lightning shoots from of its eyes.
Lightning is the attribute of Zeus, the king of gods, it is also that of Yahweh, the God of Jews, also called the god of ire. Lightning bolts are the manifestation of the divine wrath.
So, it’s as if the cat were saying: who is this boor who intends to go over me and acts as though I didn’t exist? This guy is ill-mannered.
I can’t cross over the cat
The anger of the cat paralyzes the dreamer. He won’t be able to enter the “café”: the incubation process won’t work, he won’t get the dream that would give him the information he wants.
This little dream is highly significant. It underlines a recurrent trait in our cultures today : I mean a lack of attention toward the unconscious and ignorance regarding the interior world at large. All the rituals designed to approach this dimension have been neglected, forgotten. We act as boors and consider ourselves as masters of the domain ! The unconscious finding us very casual, becomes contemptuous and reacts vigorously !
The analysis of this little dream shows us that the unconscious manifests itself as an autonomous reality which is not under our power.
It is an independent, sovereign function.
The unconscious is willing to cooperate, to help but we fall prey to a big illusion, if we think we can exploit or abuse it. The unconscious cannot be manipulated and will never be at our ego’s service.
Moreover the last image shows clearly that the unconscious paralyzes the one who tries to exploit it for personal material gain.
You might have noticed that the image of the cat in Arnaud’s dream doesn’t have the same signification as the cat in Irina’s dream posted earlier. The meaning of an image changes according to the dreamer and the circumstances.
In Irina’s dream the cat symbolized a man in the outer world.
Here, in Arnaud’s dream the cat manifests the same mysterious, independent, sovereign dynamism, that the Egyptians adored in cats, in the cat-goddess Bastet.
Truly Arnaud’s cat appears much more powerful than the humans. The cat dominates, it possesses a divine quality.
So, you can see in this contemporary dream the permanence of representations and conceptions which were found in vestiges of the past, some dating as far back as 5000 years old. Carl Gustav Jung called these images “archetypes”. These are not created voluntarily by human minds, they appear by themselves as images in dreams, and represent powerful dynamisms. Our ancestors considered them as the manifestations of divine forces on the earth.
Could this dream invite us to understand that the unconscious is divine ?
I thank the artists for their illustrations listed in order of their presentation :
Calculations : capifrance.fr
Le café du Forum, by the French artiste Vincent van Gogh,19th century.
Black cat : caneton.fr
Egyptian cat : chaosexmachine.info.fr