the dog man

Dear Gail -

The dream is a metaphor for your own life as perceived and felt by you on an unconscious level. This is why the dream is so rich with symbolism. The city is “as if on another planet.” The red sky is another clue that you are in an unusual location. The temple-like atmosphere suggests religious and spiritual values - which also concern a different realm.

The inhabitants of your dream are naked, but they are wearing masks. The masks represent the masks that we all - to some extent or another - wear in our everyday, waking lives. Masks are the persona that the self presents to others. Your ability to see the nakedness beneath the mask represents your ability to perceive the deeper psychological motivations and drives that shape these surface appearances.

The dog man - who you identify as male - represents someone you do not trust. Even though he is speaking calmly (and therefore should be someone whom you could reasonably trust), instead you experience a sense of terror. You feel that you must get away immediately. As you try to exit, however, you are “poked sharply in the back with a sharp stick.” This final act of dream produces so much anxiety that it forces you to awaken.

A nightmare, by definition, is a dream whose content is so disturbing that it causes us to awaken directly from sleep. In this case, your nightmare is an urgent communication to you from your subconscious mind about a relationship or feeling you hold in your life. The question to ask yourself is - who is the dog man? Or alternatively, what does the dog man represent to you?

In the first scenario - who does the dog man represent? - the dog man may be a specific person in your life that you know well and feel you are becoming too close to. The relationship is confining; you are being held captive and do not feel free to leave. Being poked sharply in the back with a sharp stick suggests a sexual relationship. If you are involved in a sexual relationship with this man you may be feeling an undercurrent of violence that belies his (surface appearance) acts of “love-making.”

In a second, very different interpretation, the dream may refer more generally to unconscious feelings and awareness. The dog-man may represent those feelings and awarenesses that we all hold within us but which we are not in any hurry, necessarily, to make conscious. These can be “primitive” feelings, some of the more basic drives that motivate the human animal. Often we don’t like to look at these aspects of ourselves and others - indeed of the human condition - so we avoid them, and can feel frightened or threatened if they are brought to the surface. It is possible your unconscious mind is encouraging you to “recognize reality” a bit. When you try to avoid the dog-man, you are prodded in your back to not run away. See which of these interpretations makes more sense to you, and follow through on your feelings and intuition.

You ask if I ascribe to “prophetic” or “deja vu” dreams? I do. The great value of dreams is that they often show us feelings we are holding long before they might otherwise become conscious. In this sense, dreams tell the future. In your case, you are very disturbed by the qualities you perceive lurking beneath the surface mask of the dog man, but you are confused by the mask - the surface appearance - of the relationship. Once you identify who or what the dog man represents, you will understand better your feelings for this person or observations. If the dog man does represent a specific individual you know in your life, I suggest you reconsider your involvement in this relationship.

Back to the original dream
Back to list of women's dreams

To access our Dreamcast Library, log in, then click here.
Not registered? Click here.

It's free! No fees or subscriptions.