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Karen M. Black
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A daughter's tale of truth, love and letting go

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An addictive spin on awakening, soulmates and past lives

Why do people dream?
What can your dreams reveal
about your soulmate?

An interview with Toronto, Ontario
Dream Therapist Ursula Carsen

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“Dreams are illustrations... from the book your soul is writing about you.”
– Marsha Norman

Why do people dream? What does my dream mean? Finding out what dreams mean has always fascinated me and recently I had the pleasure of interviewing Toronto Dream Therapist Ursula Carsen who clarified not only what dreams mean — but what dreams can reveal about life and love.

K: When did you start asking why do people dream?

I can't remember a time when I wasn't interested. My dreams have always been vivid.

I grew up in a household where 'obedience' was everything. My dreams were my inner mirrors, my own rules. I could always rely on them, and even the scary dreams were illuminating.

K: Why do we dream? How does dream therapy benefit your clients?

Themes from dreams may be inherited or even from past lifetimes (though I'm cautious about this). Dreams are also revealing because they show not only a personal aspect, but also a cultural and universal aspect as well.

In essence, dreams, through imagery and metaphor, point us to what needs to be released into order to be free and to understand ourselves. Understanding is so important in the process of self-change, responsibility and transformation.

K: Generally, what is the meaning behind dreams? What can you learn from your dreams?

Why do people dream? “Dreams are answers to questions we haven't yet figured out how to ask.”
– X-Files

Well, dreams don't tell you what you already know. That would be rather boring (smile). What you can learn about why do people dream, is very simply... what you don't know yet about yourself. And what you may not want to like about yourself.

Why do people dream? Said another way, dreams show our unlived potential and our unloved potential.

Dreams are also an initiation into our shadows. Both positive and negative. Though from a dream or 'wholeness' point of view, there's no judgment. It just is what it is.

K: What do our dreams reveal about our readiness for love? How can dream interpretation help?

Why do people dream? “Dreams are today's answers to tomorrow's questions.”
– Edgar Cayce

I can't emphasize this strongly enough. Dreams can be the greatest teachers in Listening... tuning in to what our souls are saying. As we begin to listen to our inner voice... to our heart's voice.

Deep listening to our souls prepares us to listen to another person. To receive someone else into our hearts. We must be able to listen deeply. Learn how takes time and it's a process. This is not a quick fix.

Listening to our souls also teaches us to hold the tension with another, allowing a relationship to unfold. When you first meet someone, there's tension. Sometimes it's difficult to bear and we say “I'm outta here” too soon. Though sometimes, it's a good thing that you're outta there.

Spending the time though, to have a real curiosity about someone, bearing the tension, is necessary. Your heart may go pitter patter. Hold the tension... take yourself further. Ask... am I able to bear my own vulnerability? Hold that vulnerability. Allow something to come through and surrender to that which wants to come through, the deeper depths.

Our dreams also reveal our current relationship with and balance between our mind and heart, or our masculine and feminine sides. This prepares us to open to another's mind and heart. Listening, embracing and integrating both the masculine and feminine sides of ourselves. We cannot continue to dominate one over the other. Nature is always balanced. We need both.

K: You say you're cautious around interpreting past lives in dreams — can you expand on that?

“The best reason for having dreams is that in dreams no reasons are necessary.”
– Ashleigh Brilliant

Personally, I'm careful about diagnosing a dream as anything. I trust that the dream has the highest good of the dreamer in mind, call it whatever. It may be what does not belong in this person's life at the moment. How can we release that? Dreams indicates the direction a person needs to go... to release the past.

K: What would you say to folks who have frightening or weird dreams, or don't dream?

“All the things one has forgotten scream for help in dreams.”
– Elias Canetti

I call scary or weird dreams, or recurring dreams — 'wake up dreams'. You're having the dream because some part of you wants you to face it. Tickle your curiosity. Become curious. Don't relegate your dreams to a nightly garbage can... this denies who you are.

To recall your dreams, start by allowing yourself to have a recording device, or notepad by your bed. Notice even the tiniest sign. It may be like a bird showing its beak, then you'll notice a feather, then the wing. Be curious about the creature that wants to be known. Access it. Then book an appointment with me (smile).

K: Can you share a dream interpretation exercise that readers can do at home to better understand puzzling dreams?

C.G. Jung liked this Active Imagination exercise. Start with the dream from which you want some insight.

Allow figures from your dream, or things or elements come into a conscious dialogue. Allow the dialogue to happen from your own creative expression... you'll need two different coloured pens.

Begin to write A and B in dialogue. Or if there is only one figure, or element you're curious about, dialogue with yourself. Do not use a person in your life, however, because the effect could unwittingly become manipulative.

You might ask... “What could I learn from you? What is the purpose of you appearing in my dream?” Don't censor. Don't rush. Sometimes the dialogue goes on for years. It's amazing what comes in. It's a wonderful tool.

Active Imagination helps integrate your shadow aspects... brings them to your consciousness. Otherwise, they're held in hiding. This process also increases the energy you have available.

K: If someone was ready for their soulmate or true intimacy... what might their dreams look like?

Someone might be aware of a figure coming toward them. Familiarizing themselves with someone or something yet unknown. Welcoming this quality into their life. It's like... I don't know you yet... I'm very curious.

K: Can someone ask that they connect with their soulmates in their dreams? Like a prophetic dream?

Yes, do this just before you go to sleep. Ask, what do I need to learn to have the relationship I want. Literally invite the universe to send this person your way... as you're being sent their way. The person whom you can really with harmonize with on that higher levels. Ask that you meet in the community of higher selves.

K: Thanks for your time today, and answering my questions on why do people dream. How can my readers get in touch with you?

You're welcome! They can reach me through my website Dream Therapy. I practice out of Toronto, but do Dream Therapy with remote clients as well.

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