Interview with Jane Teresa
Jane Teresa is a Dream Analyst, Dream Alchemist, Author, Broadcaster and Scientist.
Dream Analyst and Author Jane Teresa interprets dream meaning and uses dream alchemy practices to bring positive changes into peoples lifes. She runs a successfull online resource website and often appears in the media as a dream expert.
She is the author of five books: “Sleep On It & Change Your Life”, “Dream It: Do It!”, “The Shape of Things to Come”, “Dream Alchemy” and “101 Dream Interpretation Tips”.
About Jane Teresa
Q. What made you interested in interpreting dreams and learning about the importance of reading into them?
A. My own dreams intrigued me from early childhood. I didn’t understand them, but I intuitively felt they were connected to the purpose and meaning of life. I graduated as a scientist, specialising in neurophysiology – how the brain works and how we interpret the world – and, in the end, both roads, the intuitive and the scientific, led me to research dreams and develop my own approaches to interpretation.
I just followed my passion.
Q. Do you have a dream book that you write in each morning when you wake up?
A. I kept a dream journal for 12 years, writing down every single dream and working with them.
Now I work with my dreams every day from memory – interpreting them and creating dream alchemy practices that put the insights into immediate positive action.
Q. Can you give an example when a dream has helped you make a decision in life?
A. All my dreams help me make decisions because they help me to understand why I see my situation in the way I do, which opens my eyes to new ways of seeing.
A couple of years ago I dreamed I was rowing a boat with two young boys as passengers. Suddenly the boat flipped backwards and both boys fell into the lake and disappeared. I woke up feeling devastated, knowing the boys must be dead.
At the time, I was considering withdrawing from a publication plan for a new book I had written (which may later have included a second book). After the dream, instead of doing a ‘back flip’ and depriving my two books of published life, I found a better way of handling the situation and this freed me to find a far better publishing opportunity. I did this by applying a dream alchemy visualisation – visualising rowing the boat and the boys to a wonderful destination. This simple process resulted in automatically seeing a new way forward, and then making the decisions to follow through. One of the boy-books (my fifth book) has now been published and is not only selling very well but opened up other exciting avenues that I would otherwise have missed. The second boy-book is lining up, ready to go in perfect timing.
Global Dreaming & History
Q. Do dream interpretations follow the same guidelines all over world?
A. There are many methods and approaches to dream interpretation practised throughout the world and across time. I apply methods that I have researched, developed and tested since I began researching dreams in 1992.
Q. From what era did the concept of dream recording and interpretation evolve from?
A. Dreams are recorded in Egyptian hieroglyphs dated back to almost 4,000 years ago, but it is believed that they were recorded in tablets dating back 5,000 years, kept in the oldest known library, the Assurbanipal Library.
Artemidorus, a Greek physician living in Rome in the 2nd century AD, is said to have consulted these texts when he wrote his dream interpretation book, Oneirocritica. His book laid the foundation for dream interpretation for the next 1,500 years, the 24th edition being published in 1740.
Between these two periods, Hippocrates, the Father of Modern Medicine, was one of many dream interpreters who worked in the healing temples of Ancient Greece. The healing temples were widespread for around 1,000 years BC, and
Hippocrates practised around 300 years BC. People came to the temples to sleep amongst harmless snakes, seeking a cure for their physical, mental, emotional or spiritual ailments. In the morning, their dreams were interpreted to determine cause and cure.
Q. Do we dream every night?
A. Yes – about five times. People who say they don’t dream just don’t remember them.
Q. Why is it that we can easily forget about a dream if we don’t think about it thoroughly as soon as we wake up?
A. We usually need to take the time to convert the fleeting memory of the dream into long term memory. This is done by thinking about it, writing it down or talking about it. It’s a reflection of the way so many of us have been brought up to consider dreams as unimportant, not worth thinking about. It’s also a reflection of how quickly we jump out of bed and ‘get on’ with things – rush, rush.
Q. Is it true that we dream more vividly when unwell? If so, why is this?
A. Our dreams tend to be more vivid during times of change or when circumstances are challenging us to change and we’re resisting. These are also times when our emotions – conscious and unconscious – are triggered. These are exactly the times when – if we resist – we tend to be unwell. Isn’t it wonderful that our dream recall is so vivid at the very time we need it the most?
Q. Can a dream assist us in resolving a problem that we think about during the course of a day or something we can’t decide on when fully conscious? What are your thought on this?
A. Absolutely. Isn’t it often the case that we ‘sleep on it’ and wake up with a solution? And that’s without remembering the dream that did the work for us.
Dreams process our experiences of the last day or so and compare these to all our past experiences in order to ‘make sense’ of the world. Usually we solve our problems in the same old ways, according to our past experiences, and these solutions may or may not serve us well. Sometimes our dreams reject past experience in the face of overwhelming new evidence and create new solutions. Between these two scenarios, many dreams process a problem or conflict only to come up with a too-hard-basket response. These present as those unresolved dreams, the ones that don’t have satisfactory endings.
My approach is to look at all three types of dreams – those that come up with old solutions, those that come up with new solutions, and those that are unresolved – to identify the dreamer’s belief patterns. These hold the key to the problem. When you can identify a belief that’s not working for you, and change it, you have an insightful solution.
Q. Your approach to working with dreams is to follow dream analysis with exercises that you call Dream Alchemy Practices. How does this work and is it something that individuals can perform themselves on their own dreams?
A. An example of a dream alchemy practice is the visualisation I did following my back-flipping boat dream described above. Dream alchemy practices come in many forms: visualisation, affirmation, dialogue, artwork, writing, body work and much more.
A dream alchemy practice works with one or more of the symbols from a dream to create a desired change. Dream symbols come from our unconscious mind – they are the language our unconscious mind uses to express itself. Our unconscious beliefs and feelings often limit our progress or block us from achieving our conscious goals. Dreams reveal our unconscious beliefs, so when we need to change or reprogram these we need to speak the same language – we need to use the same symbols but rearrange them to rearrange the belief. Creating a suitable dream alchemy practice requires a good understanding of dream interpretation and then some basic alchemy skills, which are easily learned.
Q. Why is it that sometimes when we dream individuals we have not thought about, or made contact with, for years suddenly appear? Is this a direct message or merely representational?
A. It’s representational. We dream of certain people because they represent certain approaches to life or because they represent past issues. We manifest those approaches and issues in our waking life, and sometimes these are in the actual human form in which they appeared in the dream. At the same time, when we dream, our telepathic senses can kick in, and we can ‘pick up’ on what’s happening beyond our normal sensitivity, including, for example, that forgotten person thinking about a trip to our locality. While this does happen, it’s vital to bear in mind that dreams are symbolic, with only occasional telepathic insertions, so those common dreams of family and friends dying, or planes crashing, are deeply symbolic. If they manifest in waking life, they will manifest as things ending or ideas and plans crashing. Dreams give prior warning – we can let things end and crash, if the time is right, or take alternative action if we prefer a different outcome.
Q. Many of us have recurring dreams. Are these dreams more important than others?
A. Dreams recur because waking life issues recur. Recurring dreams with unresolved or unsatisfactory endings reflect recurring waking life issues with unresolved or unsatisfactory endings. It’s important to prioritise interpreting recurring dreams so we can understand the recurring issues and find positive solutions.
Q. Are nightmares always a ‘nightmare’ and formative of negative interpretations or can they also have positive underlying meanings?
A. Every dream has a positive meaning, because interpretation is aimed at identifying a positive message, something the dreamer can take forward. A dream interpretation might show that the dreamer is heading down the wrong path, for example, so the positive meaning of the dream is that the dreamer gets to acknowledge this, to identify what is causing this, and to identify a solution – the key to finding and heading up the right path. Dreams, interpreted, help us to understand our lives so that we can turn this deep self-understanding into meaningful insight and find positive solutions that enhance our sense of meaning and purpose. In other words, interpretation and alchemy guides our personal and spiritual evolution.