Full Moon in Scorpio on May 17, 2011
The days have been cloudy and I have hardly seen the Moon in the night at all. Then last night I awoke at 2 am to discover the Full Moon shining in all her brilliance. I thought of my Shadow, which I had been pondering the last few days – my inner boogey man that keeps me in fear. As I looked at the Moon the thought came to incubate a dream that would help me understand my Shadow more. So I said to the Moon and myself: “I’d like a dream so that I can see my Shadow and understand its place in my life.” I then went back to bed, and awoke an hour later, adrenaline rushing from a very scary dream. Here is what I dreamt:
It is night. I am part of a group being chased down by horrible people. These people are amazingly cruel and use blasts of fire to destroy everything. (note: I had just watched Lord of the Rings trilogy and the fierce war scenes). I am so frightened. I am hiding out, running from hiding place to hiding place in total fear. These horrible people completely destroy one place and then move on to the next place to annihilate. But they keep a few people behind to finally destroy anyone who comes out of hiding once they leave. There is no safety. I run into my brother Tom who takes me into a house that just been raided and escaped destruction. He felt safe there since the destroyers had moved on. I am still fearful, knowing they leave single destroyers behind. I look out a window and I see a man outside on a large construction vehicle driving round and I suspect he is a destroyer. Tom does not seem concerned. But I decide to hide underneath a blanket so I can not be seen. My dog curled up around me.
Scene shifts: I found my other brother Jack. I told him about these horrible people destroying everything but he didn’t believe me and wasn’t taking any precautions at all. I freaked out in fear and he pushed me aside and he almost struck me, stopping just in time. He seemed barely composed, full of unreleased anger. He handed me a note that was written by his Boss which said Jack had a terrible temper and needed to bring it under control or he’d lose his job. It was like Jack was proud he’d gotten his anger under control, even if just barely. He and another guy got in Jack’s car, I got in the back seat, which was only an unsecured lawn chair and we drove off. I was keeping an eye out for the destroyers since they could be anywhere (note: I had just seen the Matrix, where the agents can show up at any point). I saw a police car , which I suspected could be a destroyer, and warned Jack about that. But he was arrogant and had no concern. I could only hope he knew what he was doing. He said, “I hear you have a dog” and I said “Yes, If you want I’ll show it to you.” That is when I woke up and the dream ended.
I won’t try to interpret this dream now, but want to share the insights that came to me as I woke up through the rest of the night. I thought of how full of violence and fear this dream was. So, this is some indication of the intensity of my Shadow. I am currently studying Carl Jung’s Red Book and I think of Carl Jung and how some people think he was psychotic based on his fantasies like those he wrote about in his journals. Yet, someone like Tolkien who wrote Lord of the Rings and used his imagination to write arguably one of the most vicious and violent books ever written, is considered a great genius. Why is one person’s (Jung’s) violent fantasy considered psychotic and another’s (Tolkien) is a great expression of creativity? Is it because Tolkien projected his fantasies of violence onto the “other” while Jung kept his focus on himself? I thought of how many films are based on the Shadow. In Lord of the Rings, Tolkien even refers to the “shadow” in that Sauron, the Great Deceiver is covering the world in”shadow,”and the Sun is not seen any more. Harry Potter is all about facing the Shadow figure of Voldemort.
As I lay in bed after this dream I felt uneasy, almost afraid, as if this dream was true and I was in danger. But then I realized that the Shadow is not real, in the sense that it has no real substance. The Shadow is an interior creation built by the discarded garbage of the Ego – a conglomeration of all guilt, fear, rejection, and violence. It is not any one thing, but a combination of things. The Shadow is amorphous, shifting in form, hard to pin down. It is like a Kaleidoscope of dark fragments, bits and pieces of the rejected self. And like a Kaleidoscope it changes patterns and forms, never exactly the same way twice. This is why it is hard to get a handle on the Shadow, hard to really understand it. Because once you think you have it, it changes and slips away. This shape-shifting quality of the Shadow helps me understand it, and helps me get some perspective on it. It is not like a demon who lives inside of me, just waiting to be released. The Shadow has no substance. It is more like a wisp of fog, an ever moving darkness; hence the very appropriate name given to it by Jung — The Shadow.