Dream Yoga

Dream Yoga

“Inquiry into dreams and sleep and our experiences during or around these states can help to clarify some of our problems.”

-The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, 1.38

The wish to alleviate pain (Duhka) is a common motivation for an individual to start their quest on the yogic path. Many experiences in life can be painful, some of which can be related to dreams and sleep. Individuals can face challenges such as nightmares, sleep paralysis, lucid dreams, insomnia, circadian rhythm disorders, taboo fantasies and apparent precognition visions. Though individuals often seek professional medical advice for serious sleep conditions, not everyone seeks guidance for issues which they consider simply confusing or socially inappropriate. It is not uncommon for a person with sleep and dream disturbances to simply live with them, attempting to remedy their challenges with superficial fixes like using over-the-counter sedatives to get to sleep and stimulants, like caffeine, to increase wakefulness. Dream Yoga was created a means for the individual to relate to their sleep and dream disturbances in a productive way; utilizing them as a learning experience on their quest for greater personal awareness.

Dream Yoga is a path of self-inquiry that has the capacity to bring the practitioner into a profound comprehension of the nature of the mind, helping us deconstruct the mechanics of the ego (asmita) and work toward a clear state of mind (Turiya). In waking life, if a caring parent sees a child making a mistake or a dangerous decision,the parent will step in to instruct the child to stop the activity or prevent them from making a choice with painful consequences. Often the child will at least be temporarily upset at the parent because they are prevented from taking their desired action. Dreams, when decoded, can be seen to operate in a similar way to a caring parent; sending messages to assist in steering the individual in a wise direction. Rather than sending a direct instruction, it is more usual for a  dreamer to receive a message in code. When a person is resistant to receiving a message, it will often try to reach them in a highly disguised version. Dream Yoga is the process of removing the disguise from the message and revealing it in it's direct form to the dreamer.

For the person wishing to experience Dream Yoga, there a two possibilities. Dream Yoga is a practice which one can do on oneself. Through instruction from a Dream Yoga teacher, an individual can learn the methods to analyze their own dreams and uncover the messages themselves. The solo process of analysis can be more challenging and have inaccuracies, if the Dreamer is very resistant receiving to the message. It is also an option to have your dreams analyzed by a Dream Yoga Teacher; this is a two session process: one session analyzing the dream and one session going over the findings of the analysis. Having your dream analyzed by another can assist in uncovering both the message and your methods of resistance to receiving it, which can make a person better a self-analysis. The end goal of both options is the same, as Swami Sivananda sagely explained: “A dream presents a demand on our waking consciousness. If rightly interpreted, it shows the way to be at peace with ourselves. The dreams of the neurotic not only reveal the repressed contents (of the mind) but they also suggest remedies for the cure.”

Private Dream Yoga Session

60 minute private session with Meredith Keith.

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