Anima + Animus = Divine Marriage

Since he is animus, his seeking has also to do with finding the fully initiated feminine in the psyche and keeping that as the main goal, regardless of whatever else crosses his path…this animus is doing the real work in preparation for showing and acting the true soul-Self of the newly initiated woman in day-to-day life. Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Whether or not you identify as a man or a woman, our androgynous self is always seeking to integrate the feminine with the masculine. This is the only way we will achieve the archetype of the divine marriage. Jungian analyst and author, Marion Woodman, wisely states how this life-long journey is perhaps the most important pilgrimage we will ever take. Why? Because it entails coming into wholeness with yourself and others.

Let’s dive into how female dream characters in your dreams play a role. First we need to understand that female dream characters represent qualities such as nurturing, listening, sensitivity, intuition, receptivity and caring. Likewise, male dream characters often embody such traits as action, intellect, assertion, and will-power.

Therefore, when a woman appears in your dreams, notice the feminine qualities she embodies. Is she passive, bold, fearful, nurturing, outspoken or timid? When we are aligned with the feminine, or feeling-function, we can identify and express our feelings, practice self-love and compassion for others, listen deeply to what others are saying, seek understanding and trust our intuition.

When a man shows up in your dream, observe his behavior and notice how you would describe him. Is he determined, bossy, sensual, heroic, tyrannical, controlling, or creative?

Jung referred to the archetypal feminine presence in a man’s dream as the anima, and the archetypal masculine presence in a woman’s dream as the animus. In Latin, the words anima and animus mean soul. Becoming aware of these archetypal images are essential in our emotional, intellectual, and psychological development.

Perfectionism is not the goal of the journey toward the divine marriage because it is fraught with shame, but wholeness is.

For example, in my counseling practice, when I am working with men and his relationships, we often begin with his relationships with women. And then, we look at how female characters appear in dream time. How women are showing up in his dreams tells me everything about his relationship with his feminine aspect, and therefore everything about his ability to relate to women. Until he accesses what is going on in the inner realm, nothing will change or improve in the outer realm. If a female dream character—his anima—is cold and withdrawn, I know he has work to do in creating a caring relationship with his inner woman. Being more sensitive to his own needs, his creativity, his own soul, is what is calling his attention. Why? Because the anima is reflective of a man’s search for soul. And until he is in right alignment with his feminine aspect, his connection with his soul and his relationships with women will suffer.

Likewise, if a female client is dreaming about a particular male character who consistently bullies her, or in someway makes her feel badly about herself, we will explore ways for her to stand up for her values and speak her truth. In this case, taking conscious action is needed. Until she is comfortable with her masculine aspect, she will attract men who wish to dominate, manipulate, and ignore her strength.

What we are talking about is the integration of both masculine and feminine aspects in a person. Wholeness. Completion. This is the path of individuation and it ain’t easy. But it is, oh, so very fulfilling. I’ve witnessed male clients completely transform their relationship with women by working with their anima. And I have been blown away by women shifting their connection with men by learning to understand and embrace their masculine side. Sometimes the result is ending their current relationship, but usually it entails improving and deepening the relationship they have with their partner.

And in case you’re wondering, sexual orientation and gender is irrelevant in the archetype of the divine marriage.

Each of us requires the delicate balance and intimate dance of the masculine and feminine to achieve the divine marriage. Once you have reached this deeply fulfilling state of being, you will no longer “need” people the way you once did. Your desire for relationship will stem from a place of wholeness and you will recognize that the only real reason you are joining with the another is to support each other’s soul growth. You are no longer looking to “get” your needs met. You are beautifully co-joining with another to deepen your connection with your own heart and soul, as well as the heart and soul of your beloved.

Namaste. 

Dreams that Lead You to Your Life’s Higher Purpose

Dreams that Lead You to Your Life’s Higher Purpose by Laura Grace, PhD

Dreams, being your “inner GPS” inform every area of your life. Your nighttime dreams possess the power to lead you in discovering the deeper meaning of your purpose. Simply put, dreams reveal why you are here. How? By uncovering your hidden talents and gifts. In revealing the people who “appear” to you and are meant to support you in your soul’s development.

Here is a personal example of how your dreams can provide specific direction for accessing your life’s work and creating abundance.

Years ago, I was a human resource director for a CPA and consulting firm in the Midwest. Most of my time was spent firing managers and partners as the firm underwent a series of mergers. As a highly sensitive person and empath, this was excruciatingly painful and I experienced immense burn-out in only a few short years. The life-force had been sucked out of my soul and I resigned. Instead of immediately putting myself back on the executive market, I felt guided to take a year off and do some significant soul-searching. So, I withdrew my 401(k), bought a house on small lake in the Midwest, and took my ten-year-old daughter, Alexis, and our cat, Buttercup, and moved in to a new home with my beloved partner, Thomas. It was a new beginning. Emotionally and financially it was challenging, yet I spent the next twelve months delving into spiritual teachings, journaling my thoughts and feelings, and working with my nighttime dreams. At thirty-two years old, it may have been one of the best years of my life.

Daily, I asked for guidance from my dreams and how best to use my gifts, strengths, and talents. During this time, I had a powerful dream:

I am sitting in the driver’s seat of my red Toyota which is parked in a parking lot. Next to me in the passenger’s seat I see a dark blue book with “Bhagavad Gita” scrolled in gold across the cover. I open the car door and see several brochures that I have created lying on the ground and next to them are various silver and gold coins.

This dream was showing me that writing combined with spirituality were a definite part of my life’s work. As I followed my dream’s cues, I began writing articles for spiritual and personal growth publications, something I had never done before. As a result, I had the following dream:

I am guided to look under my bed and discover enormous diamonds in the shape of crystals. I am amazed by their beauty.  After looking under the bed I look to another part of the floor and see two or three similar stones, not quite as large as the one under my bed, but just as radiant. I awake feeling happy and inspired.

These dreams affirmed the work that carried me deeper into my authentic self. They paved the way to profound abundance, not just financially, but emotionally, intellectually, creatively, and spiritually. The fact that the diamonds were shaped like crystals revealed the multi-faceted potentiality within me.

Looking back over the past couple of decades, I can see how prophetic the dream truly was. I became inspired to write a series of articles that were published throughout the country and eventually morphed into my first book, Gifts of the Soul. Next, the book and articles inspired the creation of The Self-Mastery Program, an intensive that supported individuals in accessing their inner gifts. I taught The Self-Mastery program for ten years and in the meantime, penned my second book, The Intimate Soul. (Both books were written and self-published under my former name, Laura V. Hyde.)

Unlimited ideas continued to spring forth and I developed a series of additional programs, workshops, and retreats. During this creative era, I generated a course on dreams and coached people on understanding and utilizing them. Desiring to deepen my spiritual growth, I attended an interfaith seminary program and began providing spiritual counseling.

The “multi-faceted” diamonds represented skills I never knew I had, and didn’t have, until I began working with my nighttime dreams and stretching beyond my comfort zone. Edgar Cayce wisely affirms, “Dreams are today’s answers to tomorrow’s questions.”  Listen to your dreams. Like a diamond, they possess marvelous, mystical, multi-faceted brilliance.

If you would like to see the video that accompanies this blog, watch the video below which is more in-depth. And it means a lot to me if you will kindly give it a thumbs up if you find it helpful. Namaste.

The Numinous Nature of Your Nighttime Dreams

THE NUMINOUS NATURE OF YOUR NIGHTTIME DREAMS

Dreams are a sacred gift presented to us in the midst of our sleeping consciousness. Remember your dreams. Honor your dreams. Learn from your dreams.  Norman Bradford

Dreams are alive. Rich with symbols, archetypes, alchemical images and metaphors, dreams are an invaluable transformational instrument. When understood, dreams are a pathway to higher consciousness, evolved relationships, meaningful work, informed physical health and a clear awareness of your soul’s blueprint.

But the growth that dreams provide is not always an easy process, it sometimes requires digging into unconscious muck which makes things appear messy. Also, unhealed trauma rears its head during dreamtime as do addictions, fears, unrequited love, grief, disappointment, anger, and physical, psychological, and spiritual imbalances. The unconscious does its best to grab your attention so you can recognize and integrate aspects of yourself that are hidden and may have gotten repressed along the way.

Further, dreams possess the power to free you from programmed beliefs, status quo thinking and false personas. They provide ideas, solutions and insights. Edgar Cayce taught, “Dreams work to solve problems of the dreamer’s conscious waking life, and they work to quicken in the dreamer new potentials which are his/hers to claim.”

Dreams are considered to be the oldest language known to man and some are numinous in nature, a term Jung used frequently when referring to their “divine command” (derived from the Latin word numen). These watershed experiences encompass significant health related issues, profound relationship matters, vocational and career crossroads, and spiritually defining moments. Dreams emerge from the point of contact between spirit and matter, human and divine, male and female, ego and Self. Carl Jung calls this point of contact the soul. Since your dreams provide ideas, solutions and insights, I encourage you to use this book as your own personal compass for navigating through every area of your life. Literally, they are jackpots of information and will enhance your awakening process, or what Jung called the pathway to individuation.

Dreams are sacred gifts; no matter how confusing, nonsensical, frightening, or perverse they may seem, dreams emerge from the unconscious to help you. We often avoid facing a disturbing or puzzling dream but in truth it is your own personal daimon, the Greek word for “inspired guide.”

While working with your dreams, it is helpful to keep in mind some of the basic dream principles developed by Carl Jung:

  • Almost every dream come to us in the service of health and wholeness.
  • Dreams have multiple and simultaneous meanings.
  • Only the dreamer knows for sure what the meaning of the dream is at a particular time.
  • Dreams bring information from the unconscious into consciousness, a huge gift for healing our lives, relationships and sense of purpose.

Sleep Deeply, Dream Big!

Authentic Feminine Power. A Blog for Women and Men.

“Feminine Power” is a term we’re hearing a lot about these days in the consciousness and evolutionary realms, but what does it truly mean?

My experience on the path of differentiation, growth and individuation has revealed a depth of awareness around this topic that I’d like to share with you.

First, it is important that whether you are majoring in being a male or female this lifetime, everyone possesses a feminine aspect. This part of us allows us to deeply listen to others, tap into our intuitive capacity and simply “be” in the present moment.

Second, in order to embody the fullness of our lives, to live life from a developed and authentic feminine consciousness, we need:

1. Innate Confidence: A deep knowing that you are living from the center of your deepest purpose and are the person you were born to be. This manifests as authentic confidence and capacity to show up fully which leads to the pathway of individuation (self-actualization). It also triggers the ability to create whatever you truly desire while knowing that synchronicities, resources and support will arrive when you need it.

2. Authentic Relationships: You feel fully supported to be yourself and to be seen and heard in ways that you feel secure. This emerges as an unshakable bonds that allows you to thrive in every area of your life.

3. Recognizing Your Gifts: You are able to share the gifts and talents that you have developed with the world in a way that they are recognized, received and are regenerative.

4. Creating Money: You are able to produce the money necessary to support a lifestyle that aligns with your values. You have created, or, are in the process of creating, the appropriate external structures which allow you to be congruent with your gifts and values. Too often, we are dedicated to the path of growth yet “split” between sharing our gifts in one way, and then earning money in an entirely different manner. Genuine authenticity and individuation means lining up your inner wisdom with reciprocal external structures that support your gifts and talents.

5. Health and Energy: Although you may be dealing with a health challenge, it doesn’t prevent you from sharing your gifts and fulfilling your soul’s destiny. You are taking care of yourself and have exactly the energy you need to create, share and reap the rewards of your effort.

6. Connection to Spirit-Soul-Soma: You are embodying what I call the ultimate “triune”: spirit, soul and soma (body). For centuries we have been programmed to disconnect our mind from our body and soul. On the spiritual path, particularly the metaphysical path which means “above the physical”, I have witnessed this tendency over and over again. It leads to an over emphasis on the ascension upwards, toward spirit where we feel “light”. Yet, we can become blinded by the light and not see the value in moving inward and downward, toward soul. Soul thrives on the mucky-ness that accompanies growth and transformation, and finds solace in the dark places that we tend to want to avoid. Soul also needs connection with soma where feelings from past experiences, dream images and deep desire and love reside. To heal, evolve and experience individuation we must embrace the entire triune.

7. Play!: You know when you need to have fun and you create the space to do so. Carl Jung discovered that when a project or life experience began to feel a little “too much,” it was time to play. For him that entailed playing with building blocks or creating some art which allowed an “imaginal space” to open in his psyche. As the space opened, he found ideas and creative juices emerging from Self and noticed that the ego stepped aside from its relentless attachment to outcome.

8. Your Legacy: You are contributing to something larger than yourself. Sharing your gifts and talents is effecting others in a meaningful way and has the capacity to lead transformation, both yours and theirs.

May you experience the authentic, empowered and numinous existence that is your birthright.

Namaste.

Laura V. Grace

Using Your Night-Time Dreams as a Pathway to Your Soul

“Dreams show us how to find meaning in our lives, how to fulfill our own destiny, how to realize the greater potential of life within us.”
—Marie-Louise von Franz

Rich with symbols and archetypes, dreams are an invaluable healing instrument, and when regularly processed and understood, can be a pathway to higher consciousness, healed relationships, fulfilling your life’s purpose and greater abundance. Dreams are jackpots of information, especially when you ask for answers to specific concerns. Edgar Cayce taught, “Dreams work to solve problems of the dreamer’s conscious waking life, and they work to quicken in the dreamer new potentials which are his/hers to claim.” Such is the capacity of your nightly dreams.

It’s important to keep in mind that each of your dreams, however silly or insignificant they may first appear to be, are abundant with information. They only await your willingness to learn. Further, dreams are meant to help you, not scare you. Being “stories of information,” they are expressed from your higher self through your subconscious to lovingly guide you. Countless times I’ve heard people exclaim, “I want to learn from my dreams, but mine seem so weird or negative that I’m hesitant to work with them.”

LEARN THE LANGUAGE OF YOUR DREAMS

Dreams are highly personal and using your dreams as a pathway to your soul is a process. In the book Season of Changes, Ways of Response it states, “The greatest book of study is that of your own, written by the soul upon time and space—that of your dreams.” Three key questions to keep in mind while working with a dream is:

1) What am I currently dealing with, or being affected by, that my dream wants me to know?
Dreams tend to reflect your life and its current situation. They bring authenticity and intimacy into your relationships, healing forces into your health and provide insight into other issues you’re facing in the present.

2) What do I need to know from my dreams so I can take the next step in my personal and spiritual growth?
Dreams occur to help you in every area of your life, even those areas that we tend to block and may not want to see. (Examples: addiction, self-destructive behaviors, unresolved relationship and childhood issues, unfulfilling career, etc.

3) How may I see the world around me with a new perspective from my recent dreams?
Your night-time dreams are not ghosts passing through the night, but an active and present reality that you can learn from in your daily life.

For the first time in 5 years, Laura is offering a live dream course. For more information, click HERE.