Topics: Dreams, Society & Culture, the Collective Unconscious
Dreaming in Times of Turmoil
What are we dreaming now? These are times of great turmoil and profound uncertainty. Jungian analyst Murray Stein has called it the Umbra Mundi, a “world shadow.” This seminar and discussion on dreams will focus our awareness on cultural trauma, social injustice, and fear of infection with COVID-19 that together have grown heavy on the shoulders of humanity. The notion of attending to a dream practice as a political, ethical, and psychological methodology is perhaps needed now more than ever. How might dreams help to inform our conscious attitudes, shed light on the darkness of these times, and serve as healing agents both in our consulting rooms as therapists and in the collective at large? Consider the notion of dreaming as itself a practice of freedom, a practice of soul-making, and a key ingredient in psychological transformation.
Depth Psychologist Carl Gustav Jung contributed significantly to the understanding and interpretation of dreams. Of particular inspiration for Jung were his own dreams after a painful rupture with Freud in 1913. This external event contributed to Jung’s psychological descent, his confrontation with his soul, and with his “creative illness.” His dreams, drawings, and active imaginations during this time period became the contents of his Black Books followed by The Red Book. As Jung’s transformative inner life journey unfolded, World War I was simultaneously breaking out. Jung, in his later years, connected the two events. As we currently reflect on the spirit and depth of the times, Jung’s theory of dreams is undoubtedly a critical vehicle for greater consciousness that brings light to the Umbra Mundi.
This video is in two parts. The first half is a 1-hour lecture followed by Q&A. During the second half, Ronnie leads a discussion of a few participants’ personal dreams.
Slides: A few images were shown, which are included in the video.
References: A list of images and songs used in the lecture is included in the download.
After viewing this video, you will be able to:
1) Describe what is meant by cultural trauma.
2) Demonstrate a fundamental understanding of Jung’s dream theory.
3) Describe what Jung called the collective unconscious and its relationship to our dreams.
4) Define what D. W. Winnicott called “transitional space.”
Ronnie Landau MA, LPC is a Certified Jungian Psychoanalyst and senior training analyst with the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts and the Philadelphia Association of Jungian Analysts. Her private practice is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Ms. Landau has served the Jungian community in her roles as past President (Philadelphia Association of Jungian Analysts) and past Director of Training. She is currently President Elect for CNASJA. Ms. Landau lectures widely throughout the U.S. and Zurich, Switzerland. She is the author of The Queen of Sheba and Her Hairy Legs: The Exile and Redemption of the Erotic Feminine in Western Monotheism and Jungian Process. Ms. Landau is currently interested in cultural trauma, genocide, and the impact of these forces on the psyche and the collective. Her labradoodle Jack along with her husband and children are the greatest sources of joy.