debate

Revealed to prepare one to meet the demanding situation

The spiritual implications of a debate within a dream are to do with ascertaining the merits of a positive versus a negative argument, where both are given an equal hearing.

Psychological / emotional perspective: When we find that we are in a debate, it symbolizes some inner turmoil or conflict that is as yet unresolved. It also means that you will find closure to those unresolved issues.

Material aspects: Listening to a debate suggests that there are things going on that need careful consideration. Taking part in a debate signifies a more ‘hands-on’ approach is required in some areas of our life.

Gives gender - specific: Since debate often contains both logic (a masculine trait) and emotion (a feminine one), men and women will weigh up the merits of the opposite perspective in a debate in dreams.

To dream that you are debating, or watching a debate, suggests that you are trying to resolve some internal conflict or some unsettled issue in your waking life. Consider the symbolism of who the debate is with and what is being arguing about. How does this reflect some person or soma aspect of yourself in your waking life?

1. A feeling that unresolved conflicts will work themselves out.

2. Guilt over some morally questionable activity or deed, usually an “internal debate.”



Debate | The Dream Meanings

Keywords of this dream: Debate

Goode's Universal Dream Book

ACORNS

To dream of acorns, and that you eat one, denotes you will rise gradually to riches and honour. If you do not eat, and throw one on the ground, you will quickly get rich, but another will enjoy your property.


ADULTERY

To dream that you have committed it shows great contentions and debates; but to dream you have resisted the temptation, shows victories over your enemies.


ADVERSARIES

To dream you meet with an adversary, denotes that you will overcome some obstacle to your happiness—if you are a lover, you will conqu er some powerful rival, and be happy.


ASSES

To dream you ride an ass, that bears your blows, and the more you beat, the slower his pace, denotes that you will be married to a virtuous industrious wife, but your passion will ruin her. If the ass mends his pace under your blows, and throws you she will prove incontinent.


ALIAR

To dream you are at the altar, and receive the holy sacrament. is a very unfavourable omen, and denotes many heavy and severe afflictions.


AIR

To dream that you see it cloudy, and afterwards clear and serene, denotes one part of your lifetime will prove unhappy, the latter part the reverse.


ANGLING

To dream you are angling, betokens loose desires in the m ale; such as seeking opportunities of inveigling some innocent female.


ANGER

To dream that you are in a passion and angry with any one, denotes you have many enemies ! if you are in love, be sure that some rival is slandering you to your sweetheart. If you dream you see another in a passion with you; it is more favourable, if you are in love, your sweetheart will fall sick, and you will experience some weighty loss.


ANGELS

To dream you see angels, is a sure sign that some one is near you—if a woman with child dreams of them, she will have a good time, perhaps twins.


APPLES

To dream of seeing apples, and they eat sweet and ripe, is a sure sign of prosperity, especially to virgins; if they should eat sour, it signifies much sorrow and unhappiness.


APPAREL

To dream that your apparel is proper and suited to the season of the year, denotes prosperity and happiness. To dream you are dressed in new clothes, is a favourable sign, and portends honour and succsss in your undertakings.


APPARITION

So dream you see a ghost, is very unfortunate: If it is of a comely aspect, and dressed in white, it shews deceit and temptation to sin; if you are in love, it is a sign of your not being beloved in turn, and that you are in the habits of friendship with one who is your most inveterate enemy.


ARMS

To dream that your arms are withered and decayed, shows that the person will decline in health or fortune; if they appear to be more plump and grow strong, you will meet with unexpected prosperity; if your arms are broken, you will lose some dear friend by removing to a great distance, if your right arm is cut off, you will loose a near male relation, if the left, a female.


AUTHORITY

It is good always for a rich man to think or dream he is in authority.


BACON

To dream of bacon, denotes the death of some friend or relation, and that enemies will endeavour to do you a mischief; in love, it denotes disappointment and discontent.


BARLEY - BEEAD

To dream of eating barley-bread, betokens health and great comfort to the dreamer.


BOAT

To dream you are in a boat on clear water, is very good, and indicates joy and prosperity.


BULLOCK

To dream a bullock pursues you, beware of some powerful enemy, particular if the dreamer is a female: It a cow, a female is an enemy.


BATHING

To dream you bathe, and the water seems clear, you are sure to prosper, everything will be well with you; but if the sorw. water appears muddy, you will be apt to meet with shame and sorrow.


BED

To dream that you are in bed, implies that he or she will be married at the end of the month.


BREAD

To dream you see a great quantity of loaves, denotes success in life. To dream that you are eating good bread, denotes many friends.


BEES

To dream they sting you, denotes loss of good character, and if you are in love, of your sweetheart.


BALL

To dream of dancing at a ball denotes that you will be addressed by a lover; the prospect will be a momentary pleasure he will become your husband to a certainty


BURIED

To dream yourself or friend is buried, fortells a serious fit of illness.


CHURCH

To dream that you are in church, and that the parson and pulpit are in white, and that he preaches a sermon to your taste, you will soon be married. If the parson is in black, and the congregation sing a hymn, it denotes grief.


CATS

If a man dreams of a cat, and he caress her, and she scratches him, his sweetheart is a spiteful termagant. If a female dreams of a cat that acts similarly, she may rest assured that she has a rival.


CLOCK

If you dream the clock falls or breaks, it denotes danger, especially to the sick. It is always better to dream of counting the hours of the forenoon than the afternoon.


CHEESE

To dream you eat cheese denotes profit.


CAKE

To dream that you make a cake signifies joy and prosperity.


COALS

To dream of clear burning coals, denotes prosperity, especially in love; coals in their natural state indicate trouble and discontent; extinguished coals, announce the fall of fortune, or the death of some near friend.


CLIMBING

To dream you are climbing a tree, and gain the top, you will rise to preferment, or your love will succeed; or if you dream you climb a very steep hill, foretells many difficulties in life.


CANDLE

To dream a candle burns bright and clear denotes a pleasing letter from your sweetheart; but if the candle’s blaze gets cull, you will be disappointed.


CROWNS

To dream of crowns denotes riches and honour.


CARDS

To dream you are playing at cards, it denotes that you will soon be in love. If you hold a great many court cards, if you are single, you will soon be married and happy.


CORN

To dream you are gathering ripe corn, promises you success in your enterprise, but if it is blighted or mildewed, you will be a great loser.


CARROTS

To dream of them denotes prosperity in life; if you have children they will all thrive, if you are in love your suit will be successful.


DAIRY

To dream you are in a dairy, skimming the cream off the milk, and that your sweetheart partakes of the cream, denotes him inclined to luxury. But if he drinks the milk, it is a sign of frugality.


DARKNESS

To think yourself in the dark, is a token of affliction, and loss in trade; to get out of darkness, into sudden light, is a sign of rising to eminence, or of escaping out of prison.


DEATH

To dream of death, denotes happiness and long life. To see him sink into the ground, is a certain death. The married to dream of death, implies a loss or second union.


D OGS

If they fawn and fondle upon you, it is a lucky omen: if they are barking and snarling at you, then depend that enemies are secretly endeavouring to destroy your reputation; if you are in love be careful of your present sweetheart.


DEVIL

To dream of the devil denotes many troubles. If he appears in fire immediate misfortunes will befall yau. A widow to dream of the devil, after she has buried a bad husband, is sure to have another—so widows, beware.


DANCING

To dream you are dancing at a ball, or entertainment, fortells you will shortly receive some joyful news from a long absent friend : to the sailor, a pleasant and successful voyage, increase of children to married persons; and to those in trade, much business, and happy in marriage.


DROWNING

To dream you are drowning, or see another so situated, is good to the dreamer, and denotes that he will be preserved through many strange difficulties.


DEBT

To dream you are in debt, and pursued by bailiffs, indicates that you will fall into some unexpected difficulties, or great danger.


ELEPHANT

To dream of an elephant, is a very fortunate dream it denotes an acquirement of riches, and happy wedlock.


EAGLES

To dream you see an eagle or a hawk perched, and they suffer you to caress them, you will be married to a military man, either a officer, serjeant, or private.


EATING

To dream you see others eating, is a bad omen. But if you dream you are asked to eat, and partake of those things you like best, some relief, perhaps will follow.


EGGS

To dream of eggs, is honourable. whatever you are then about will succeed. To dream of broken eggs, if married, you will have no children. But to dream of eating them, you will have many.


EVIL SPIRITS

If you see evil spirits in your dream, it is a sign of sickness, if you seem to exercise them, and they vanish, you will get over your difficulties.


EARTHQUAKE

To dream of an earthquake, warns y ou to be cautious and careful. If you see houses tumble, your friend s will feel a shock, public confidence is lost, or some dire calamity will defall them.


FLIES

To dream of flies or other vermin, denotes enemies of all sorts. To dream of killing them is a very good omen.


FOX

To dream of a fox is the forerunner of much difficulties, beware of some designing adversaries.


FALL

To dream you fall into the mire, and you are covered with filth, if a servant, you will lose your character through pilfering; if the dirt gets into your eyes, you will experience confinement, most likely be imprisoned; if you see clouds rapidly moving beware of transportation. To run and fall, then rise, and run again, is a sign that you have a litigious temper that will ruin you. But to dream you run without interruption, is a sign of indifference, and that you will accomplish your design.


FIRE

To dream of fire, denotes happiness, health and marriage, and many children. To dream you see burning lights descending, as it were from heaven, is a very bad sign; it portends Some dreadful accident to the dreamer, such as being hanged, loosing your head, having your brains dashed out, breaking a leg, or other strange accidents—to the lover, it also denotes the loss of the affections of your sweetheart.—to the tradesman, bad success in business. To dream that you are burnt by fire, denotes great danger, and that enemies will injure you, to the sailor, storm and ship wreck.


FORTUNE

To dream you make a sudden fort une, is a very bad omen.


FIELDS

If in your dream you are crossing newly ploughed fields, promises some unexpected misfortune from a person who has no children, if the fields are covered with corn, it denotes having children.


FINGER

If you cut your finger and the blood runs, you will get money where you least expect it; if you do not see any blood you will have a quarrel or law suit for money which you paid before.


GIFTS

To dream you have any thing given to you is a sign that some good is about to happen to you; it also denotes that speedy marriage will take place between you and your sweetheart.


GEESE

To dream of geese is the forerunner of good, they denote success and riches, also faithful sweethearts.


GARDEN

If you are walking in a beautiful garden, you will soon be advanced in fortune, if you are gathering the fruits of it, you will be happy in marriage, and have many children.


GALLOWS

To dream of the gallows, is a most fortunate omen, it shows that the dreamer will become rich, and arrive at great honours.


GRAVE

To dream you see a grave, fortells sickness and disappointment, if you are in love, depend you will marry your present sweetheart.


GIANTS

To dream of seeing giants is ominous of good if you are in trade, you will have a great increase of business.


HAIL

Dreaming o f hail, denotes grief and much sorrow.


HATRED

To dream o f being hated, by friends or enemies, is an ill omen.


HILLS

T o dream of travelling over steep hills, shows that you will encounter many difficulties. and enter upon some arduous undertakings; if you descend the hill easily, you will get the better of all your difficulties.


HOUSE

To dream of building a house is a very favourable omen; if you are in trade it denotes success, in love, that your sweetheart is good tempered and faithful, and will make you very happy.


H UNTING

To dream that you are hunting a fox, and that he is killed, shows much trouble through the pretensions of false friends, but that you will discover them, and overcome all their machinations.


INFANTS

To dream of infants shows trouble, and in health, except you see them playing, you may then expect to receive great satisfaction from a distant part.


ICE

Dreaming of ice is a very favourable omen; to the lover it shows your sweetheart is of an amiable temper, and faithful; to the tradesman, it denotes success and riches, to the farmer a plentiful harvest.


IRON

For one to dream he hurt with iron, shows he will receive damage.


KEYS

To dream of keys is favourable, to a person in trade and to a sailor—they denote some gift, and that the dreamer will become rich.


KNIFE

To dream you give a knife, indicates you will have much contention; to give one to your intended, shows he will loose her; she will cut your acquaintance.


LETTER

If you receive a letter in your dream, it betokens a legacy or presents; if you send a letter, you will shortly relieve a person who is in distress.


LADDER

To dream you climb a ladder, denotes a happy marriage with the object of your affections, and that you will become by industry, rich, and settle your children happily.


LINEN

To dream you are dressed in clean linen, denotes that you will shortly receive some glad tidings— if it is dirty, then poverty, a prison and disappointment in love, with the loss of something valuable


LION

To dream of seeing a lion, denotes that you will appear before your betters, accumulate riches, and marry a woman of great spirit.


MEAT

To dream you are buying meat, signifies that friends will step forward, and be of great assistance to you, and that you will overcome difficulties, and acquire great riches


MONEY

To dream of paying money denotes success in you afairs, the birth of a child, or the gain of a law suit; if received, you will thrive.


MOTHER

To dream of seeing your mother, is a certain paognostic of some agreeable adventure being about to happen to you, and that you will hear from a friend at a distance.


NUSIC

To dream you hear delicious music, is a very favourable omen; it denotes joyful news from a long absent friend.


MOON

To dream of the moon is a very favourable omen, it denotes sudden and unexpected joy, great success in love, and that the dreamer is tenderly beloved. To dream of seeing the new moon is good for tradsmen, farmers, and lovers; it is the forerunner of success snd happiness. To handsome women it is a good sign to see a full moon, but not to ugly ones.


M ONKIES

To dream of monkies is ominous ef evil, they announce deceit in love, unfaithfulness in the married state, undutiful children, malibious enemies, and an attack by thieves.


NAKEDNESS

To dream of nakedness, denotes scandal of character, to dream you see a naked woman is lucky; it fortels that some unexpected honours await you.


NIGHTMARE

To dream of being ridden by the nightmare, is a sign of sudden marriage, or to be domineered over by a fool.


OYSTERS

To dream of eating oysters, indicates a coming of much w an t; to open oysters shews we stand in need of assiduity in our business.


ORANGES

To dream you are eating oranges, implies grief and wounds.


OXEN

To dream of seeing fair and white cattle, shows virtuous inclination; to see fat or lean oxen, signifies present gain or mis­fortune.


ORCHARD

To dream you are in an orchard, denotes that you will become rich by the inheritance of a good legacy— that you will marry much to your advantage.


OAK

To dream of seeing the stately oak, is a sign of long life riches, and great gain.


PAPER

To dream you write on paper, signifies an accusation will be made against you.


PICTURES

To dream you are looking at any beautiful pictures, denotes that you will be allured by false appearances into some very disagreeable situation; if you are mrrried, be sure your partn e r deceives you, and prefers another; and that the person who estranged her affections is your most intimate friend.


PIT

To dream of falling into a deep pit, shows that some very heavy misfortune is about to attend you—that your sweetheart is false and prefers another—to a sailor, it forbodes some sad disaster at the next port you touch a t.


PLAYS

Dreaming of seeing a comedy, or farce, indicates sucmuch god, cess in business; to dream of acting in a play, seldom indicates much good.


PURSE

To dream of loosing a purse, signifies good, if it be full; but bad. if it be emty. To dream of finding a purse, is a very favourable omen.


QUARRELLING

To dream you are quarrelling denotes that some unexpected news will reach you. and that your sweetheart is about to marry another.


RAIN

To dream of being in a shower of rain, denotes great success in your undertakings, it is particularly favourable to lovers it denotes costancy, affection and a sweet temper.


RIVER

To dream of seeing river water clear, indicates good but to dream of swimning in the sea signifies great peril and danger.


RATS

To dream of rats, is a sign of many enemies and that you are exposed to many dangers from pretended friends.


READING

To dream you are reading scientific books shows approaching wisdom.


SHEEP

To dream you see a flock of sheep feeding, denotes success in life.


SNOW

To dream you see the ground all covered with snow, is a favourable dream; to a young man; shows he will marry a virgin and have children.x


SHOES

To dream you have a new pair denotes triumph over enemies


SWIMMING

To dream you are swimming with your head under water shows that you will experience some great trouble, and hear some very unpleasant news from a person you thought dear. To dream you are swimming with your head above the water denotes great success in your undertakings, whether they be love, sea farming.


TEETH

To dream you loose your teeth denotes the loss of some friend by death; and that troubles and misfortunes are about to attend you.


TAVERN

To dream you are in a tavern, feasting with friends, signifies joy and comfort


TREASURE

To dream you find a treasure, shows you will be betrayed by your bosom friends.


THIEVES

To dream you fall into the hands of thieves, shows loss and trouble.


THUNDER

Dreamimg of thunder signifies affliction to the rich; but to the poor repose.


TREES

To dream you are cutting down trees, forbodes heavy losses in business; to climb them, denotes advancement in dignity.


VAULTS

To dream o f being in hollow vaults, deep cellars, or at the bottom of coal-pits, signifies that you will match with a widow.


VINEGAR

To dream you drink vinegar, indicates sickness.


VICTUALS

To dream of eating victuals, signifies loss of money V ERMIM. To dream of being covered with vermin, such as lice, betokens long sickness, if the lice remain; bnt if you cast them off yon will be delivered of troubles.


WALKING

To dream you are walking in a dirty muddy place, fortels sickness and vexation; to a lover, it denotes his sweetheart to be bad tempered and unfaithful; to the tradesman, it fortels dishonest servants and loss of goods by fire.


WHEAT

To dream you see or are walking in a field of wheat, denotes great prosperity and riches—in love, a completion of your most sanguine, wishes, and fortels much happiness, with fine children when you marry.


WOLF

To dream of a wolf, signifies an avaricious, cruel, and despotic person; if you dream you conquer a wolf, you will conquer a designing enemy, who has long endeavoured to prey on you—to dream you are bitten by one, shows you will receive some injury from a pretended friend.


WOOD

To dream you are cutting or chopping of wood, shows that you will be happy in your family, and become rich and respectable in life.


WEDDINGS

For a man while sick, to dream of wedding a maid, denotes death; if to a deformed woman, it signifies discontent; to a handsome person much joy.


WINE

To dream of drinking wine with absent friend, signifies a speedy meeting; but to be drinking it by yourself, indicates you will became a great drunkard; and if you do, you may depend on it, it will speedily prove your ruin.


WAR

To dream of war, denotes trouble and danger to all.


WATER

To dream you are drinking water, denotes great trouble and adversity in trade, loss of business and arrest.


WASPS

To dream you are stung by wasps, signifies vexation and trouble by envious persons.


WATER - MILL

To dream of being at one is a favorable omen.


WOOL

To dream you are buying or selling of wool, denoted prosperity and great affluence, by means of industry and trade; to the lover it is a favorable omen; your sweetheart is thereby shown to be of an amiable disposition, very constant, and deeply in love with you.


WIFE

A man to dream that h e sees his wife married to another, it betokeus some change of affairs.


WINDS

To dream of high winds, storms and showers of rain, shows you will be crossed in love.


YELLOW

To dream of yellow colour, denotes to the married women, great trouble from a female friend, and the loss of her husband’s affections. To the lover it signifies he will marry a virgin, who will give herself up to the first man she likes.


YOUNG

To dream you are young, fortels peace, delight, and fruition of your desire.


YOKE

To dream of having to bear the yoke, denotes danger, if it be a woman, she will be ready and willing to obey her husband, and careful to govern her family.


YEW TREE

An indication of the funeral of a very aged person, by whose death the dreamer will derive some benefit, or a protecting hand among the relations of the deceased person.


ZONE

When you dream of zones, fortels much trouble and vexation; to the tradesman, imprisonment, and loss of goods; to the lover, unfaithfulness in his sweetheart, and disappointments in his undertakings.


... Goode's Universal Dream Book

The Complete Dream Book

For persons to dream they have committed it, shows that they shall meet with great contentions and debates; but to dream they have resisted the temptation to it shows victory over their enemies, and that they shall escape great dangers.... The Complete Dream Book

Ariadne's Book of Dream

An aircraft carrier may appear in a dream to suggest that you may need to prepare for a battle: nat may be in the air. such as a battle of wits, or a debate with a business partner, an argument with a customer, or an issue with a family member.... Ariadne's Book of Dream

Christian Dream Symbols

Someone skilled in debate, Lk.10:25 ... Christian Dream Symbols

Little Giant Encyclopedia

As in Chapel, Cathedral.

A debate about the meaning of life. Contemplation is asked of you. According to Freud, it is a symbol for woman.... Little Giant Encyclopedia

Dream Symbols and Analysis

To dream of your coworkers reflects the way you interact with them. This could indicate any conflicts or bonds that you share with them. It represents your aspirations, hopes, efforts and tendency to debate with others.

If the coworkers in your dream are not your actual coworkers, then they may symbolize an aspect of your personality that you need to alter or improve.

To dream that you are training someone to take your place implies that you are ready to begin new projects and encourage personal talents and abilities to grow. You have adopted new perspectives to replace previous ones. *Refer to Office.... Dream Symbols and Analysis

About Dream Interpretation

The Scientific Literature of Dream-Problems I shall begin by giving a short account of the views of earlier writers on this subject and of the status of the dream-problem in contemporary science; since in the course of this treatise, I shall not often have occasion to refer to either. In spite of thousands of years of endeavour, little progress has been made in the scientific understanding of dreams. This fact has been so universally acknowledged by previous writers on the subject that it seems hardly necessary to quote individual opinions.

The reader will find, in many stimulating observations, and plenty of interesting material relating to our subject, but little or nothing that concerns the true nature of the dream, or that solves definitely any of its enigmas.

The educated layman, of course, knows even less of the matter. The conception of the dream that was held in prehistoric ages by primitive peoples, and the influence which it may have exerted on the formation of their conceptions of the universe, and of the soul, is a theme of such great interest that it is only with reluctance that I refrain from dealing with it in these pages. I will refer the reader to the well-known works of Sir John Lubbock (Lord Avebury), Herbert Spencer, E. B. Tylor and other writers; I will only add that we shall not realise the importance of these problems and speculations until we have completed the task of dream interpretation that lies before us. A reminiscence of the concept of the dream that was held in primitive times seems to underlie the evaluation of the dream which was current among the peoples of classical antiquity.[1] They took it for granted that dreams were related to the world of the supernatural beings in whom they believed, and that they brought inspirations from the gods and demons. Moreover, it appeared to them that dreams must serve a special purpose in respect of the dreamer; that, as a rule, they predicted the future.

The extraordinary variations in the content of dreams, and in the impressions which they produced on the dreamer, made it, of course, very difficult to formulate a coherent conception of them, and necessitated manifold differentiations and group-formations, according to their value and reliability.

The valuation of dreams by the individual philosophers of antiquity naturally depended on the importance which they were prepared to attribute to manticism in general. In the two works of Aristotle in which there is mention of dreams, they are already regarded as constituting a problem of psychology. We are told that the dream is not god-sent, that it is not of divine but of daimonic origin.

For nature is really daimonic, not divine; that is to say, the dream is not a supernatural revelation, but is subject to the laws of the human spirit, which has, of course, a kinship with the divine.

The dream is defined as the psychic activity of the sleeper, inasmuch as he is asleep. Aristotle was acquainted with some of the characteristics of the dream-life; for example, he knew that a dream converts the slight sensations perceived in sleep into intense sensations (‘one imagines that one is walking through fire, and feels hot, if this or that part of the body becomes only quite slightly warm’), which led him to conclude that dreams might easily betray to the physician the first indications of an incipient physical change which escaped observation during the day.[2] As has been said, those writers of antiquity who preceded Aristotle did not regard the dream as a product of the dreaming psyche, but as an inspiration of divine origin, and in ancient times, the two opposing tendencies which we shall find throughout the ages in respect of the evaluation of the dream-life, were already perceptible.

The ancients distinguished between the true and valuable dreams which were sent to the dreamer as warnings, or to foretell future events, and the vain, fraudulent and empty dreams, whose object was to misguide him or lead him to destruction. The pre-scientific conception of the dream which obtained among the ancients was, of course, in perfect keeping with their general conception of the universe, which was accustomed to project as an external reality that which possessed reality only in the life of the psyche. Further, it accounted for the main impression made upon the waking life by the morning memory of the dream; for in this memory the dream, as compared with the rest of the psychic content, seems to be something alien, coming, as it were, from another world. It would be an error to suppose that the theory of the supernatural origin of dreams lacks followers even in our own times; for quite apart from pietistic and mystical writers -- who cling, as they are perfectly justified in doing, to the remnants of the once predominant realm of the supernatural until these remnants have been swept away by scientific explanation -- we not infrequently find that quite intelligent persons, who in other respects are averse to anything of a romantic nature, go so far as to base their religious belief in the existence and co-operation of superhuman spiritual powers on the inexplicable nature of the phenomena of dreams (Haffner).

The validity ascribed to the dream life by certain schools of philosophy -- for example, by the school of Schelling -- is a distinct reminiscence of the undisputed belief in the divinity of dreams which prevailed in antiquity; and for some thinkers, the mantic or prophetic power of dreams is still a subject of debate. This is due to the fact that the explanations attempted by psychology are too inadequate to cope with the accumulated material, however strongly the scientific thinker may feel that such superstitious doctrines should be repudiated. To write a history of our scientific knowledge of the dream problem is extremely difficult, because, valuable though this knowledge may be in certain respects, no real progress in a definite direction is as yet discernible. No real foundation of verified results has hitherto been established on which future investigators might continue to build. Every new author approaches the same problems afresh, and from the very beginning.

If I were to enumerate such authors in chronological order, giving a survey of the opinions which each has held concerning the problems of the dream, I should be quite unable to draw a clear and complete picture of the present state of our knowledge on the subject. I have therefore preferred to base my method of treatment on themes rather than on authors, and in attempting the solution of each problem of the dream, I shall cite the material found in the literature of the subject. But as I have not succeeded in mastering the whole of this literature -- for it is widely dispersed and interwoven with the literature of other subjects -- I must ask my readers to rest content with my survey as it stands, provided that no fundamental fact or important point of view has been overlooked. In a supplement to a later German edition, the author adds: I shall have to justify myself for not extending my summary of the literature of dream problems to cover the period between first appearance of this book and the publication of the second edition. This justification may not seem very satisfactory to the reader; none the less, to me it was decisive.

The motives which induced me to summarise the treatment of dreams in the literature of the subject have been exhausted by the foregoing introduction; to have continued this would have cost me a great deal of effort and would not have been particularly useful or instructive.

For the interval in question -- a period of nine years -- has yielded nothing new or valuable as regards the conception of dreams, either in actual material or in novel points of view. In most of the literature which has appeared since the publication of my own work, the latter has not been mentioned or discussed; it has, of course, received the least attention from the so-called ‘research workers on dreams’, who have thus afforded a brilliant example of the aversion to learning anything new so characteristic of the scientist. ‘Les savants ne sont pas curieux’, said the scoffer, Anatole France.

If there were such a thing in science as the right of revenge, I, in my turn, should be justified in ignoring the literature which has appeared since the publication of this book.

The few reviews which have appeared in the scientific journals are so full of misconceptions and lack of comprehension that my only possible answer to my critics would be a request that they should read this book over again -- or perhaps merely that they should read it! And in a supplement to the fourth German edition which appeared in 1914, a year after I published the first English translation of this work, he writes: Since then, the state of affairs has certainly undergone a change; my contribution to the ‘interpretation of dreams’ is no longer ignored in the literature of the subject. But the new situation makes it even more impossible to continue the foregoing summary.

The Interpretation of Dreams has evoked a whole series of new contentions and problems, which have been expounded by the authors in the most varied fashions. But I cannot discuss these works until I have developed the theories to which their authors have referred. Whatever has appeared to me as valuable in this recent literature, I have accordingly reviewed in the course of the following exposition.... About Dream Interpretation

About Dream Interpretation

The Scientific Literature of Dream-Problems

I shall begin by giving a short account of the views of earlier writers on this subject and of the status of the dream-problem in contemporary science; since in the course of this treatise, I shall not often have occasion to refer to either. In spite of thousands of years of endeavour, little progress has been made in the scientific understanding of dreams. This fact has been so universally acknowledged by previous writers on the subject that it seems hardly necessary to quote individual opinions.

The reader will find, in many stimulating observations, and plenty of interesting material relating to our subject, but little or nothing that concerns the true nature of the dream, or that solves definitely any of its enigmas.

The educated layman, of course, knows even less of the matter. The conception of the dream that was held in prehistoric ages by primitive peoples, and the influence which it may have exerted on the formation of their conceptions of the universe, and of the soul, is a theme of such great interest that it is only with reluctance that I refrain from dealing with it in these pages. I will refer the reader to the well-known works of Sir John Lubbock (Lord Avebury), Herbert Spencer, E. B. Tylor and other writers; I will only add that we shall not realise the importance of these problems and speculations until we have completed the task of dream interpretation that lies before us. A reminiscence of the concept of the dream that was held in primitive times seems to underlie the evaluation of the dream which was current among the peoples of classical antiquity.[1] They took it for granted that dreams were related to the world of the supernatural beings in whom they believed, and that they brought inspirations from the gods and demons. Moreover, it appeared to them that dreams must serve a special purpose in respect of the dreamer; that, as a rule, they predicted the future.

The extraordinary variations in the content of dreams, and in the impressions which they produced on the dreamer, made it, of course, very difficult to formulate a coherent conception of them, and necessitated manifold differentiations and group-formations, according to their value and reliability.

The valuation of dreams by the individual philosophers of antiquity naturally depended on the importance which they were prepared to attribute to manticism in general. In the two works of Aristotle in which there is mention of dreams, they are already regarded as constituting a problem of psychology. We are told that the dream is not god-sent, that it is not of divine but of daimonic origin.

For nature is really daimonic, not divine; that is to say, the dream is not a supernatural revelation, but is subject to the laws of the human spirit, which has, of course, a kinship with the divine.

The dream is defined as the psychic activity of the sleeper, inasmuch as he is asleep. Aristotle was acquainted with some of the characteristics of the dream-life; for example, he knew that a dream converts the slight sensations perceived in sleep into intense sensations (‰_÷one imagines that one is walking through fire, and feels hot, if this or that part of the body becomes only quite slightly warm‰_ª), which led him to conclude that dreams might easily betray to the physician the first indications of an incipient physical change which escaped observation during the day.[2] As has been said, those writers of antiquity who preceded Aristotle did not regard the dream as a product of the dreaming psyche, but as an inspiration of divine origin, and in ancient times, the two opposing tendencies which we shall find throughout the ages in respect of the evaluation of the dream-life, were already perceptible.

The ancients distinguished between the true and valuable dreams which were sent to the dreamer as warnings, or to foretell future events, and the vain, fraudulent and empty dreams, whose object was to misguide him or lead him to destruction. The pre-scientific conception of the dream which obtained among the ancients was, of course, in perfect keeping with their general conception of the universe, which was accustomed to project as an external reality that which possessed reality only in the life of the psyche. Further, it accounted for the main impression made upon the waking life by the morning memory of the dream; for in this memory the dream, as compared with the rest of the psychic content, seems to be something alien, coming, as it were, from another world. It would be an error to suppose that the theory of the supernatural origin of dreams lacks followers even in our own times; for quite apart from pietistic and mystical writers -- who cling, as they are perfectly justified in doing, to the remnants of the once predominant realm of the supernatural until these remnants have been swept away by scientific explanation -- we not infrequently find that quite intelligent persons, who in other respects are averse to anything of a romantic nature, go so far as to base their religious belief in the existence and co-operation of superhuman spiritual powers on the inexplicable nature of the phenomena of dreams (Haffner).

The validity ascribed to the dream life by certain schools of philosophy -- for example, by the school of Schelling -- is a distinct reminiscence of the undisputed belief in the divinity of dreams which prevailed in antiquity; and for some thinkers, the mantic or prophetic power of dreams is still a subject of debate. This is due to the fact that the explanations attempted by psychology are too inadequate to cope with the accumulated material, however strongly the scientific thinker may feel that such superstitious doctrines should be repudiated. To write a history of our scientific knowledge of the dream problem is extremely difficult, because, valuable though this knowledge may be in certain respects, no real progress in a definite direction is as yet discernible. No real foundation of verified results has hitherto been established on which future investigators might continue to build. Every new author approaches the same problems afresh, and from the very beginning.

If I were to enumerate such authors in chronological order, giving a survey of the opinions which each has held concerning the problems of the dream, I should be quite unable to draw a clear and complete picture of the present state of our knowledge on the subject. I have therefore preferred to base my method of treatment on themes rather than on authors, and in attempting the solution of each problem of the dream, I shall cite the material found in the literature of the subject. But as I have not succeeded in mastering the whole of this literature -- for it is widely dispersed and interwoven with the literature of other subjects -- I must ask my readers to rest content with my survey as it stands, provided that no fundamental fact or important point of view has been overlooked. In a supplement to a later German edition, the author adds: I shall have to justify myself for not extending my summary of the literature of dream problems to cover the period between first appearance of this book and the publication of the second edition. This justification may not seem very satisfactory to the reader; none the less, to me it was decisive.

The motives which induced me to summarise the treatment of dreams in the literature of the subject have been exhausted by the foregoing introduction; to have continued this would have cost me a great deal of effort and would not have been particularly useful or instructive.

For the interval in question -- a period of nine years -- has yielded nothing new or valuable as regards the conception of dreams, either in actual material or in novel points of view. In most of the literature which has appeared since the publication of my own work, the latter has not been mentioned or discussed; it has, of course, received the least attention from the so-called ‰_÷research workers on dreams‰_ª, who have thus afforded a brilliant example of the aversion to learning anything new so characteristic of the scientist. ‰_÷Les savants ne sont pas curieux‰_ª, said the scoffer, Anatole France.

If there were such a thing in science as the right of revenge, I, in my turn, should be justified in ignoring the literature which has appeared since the publication of this book.

The few reviews which have appeared in the scientific journals are so full of misconceptions and lack of comprehension that my only possible answer to my critics would be a request that they should read this book over again -- or perhaps merely that they should read it! And in a supplement to the fourth German edition which appeared in 1914, a year after I published the first English translation of this work, he writes: Since then, the state of affairs has certainly undergone a change; my contribution to the ‰_÷interpretation of dreams‰_ª is no longer ignored in the literature of the subject. But the new situation makes it even more impossible to continue the foregoing summary.

The Interpretation of Dreams has evoked a whole series of new contentions and problems, which have been expounded by the authors in the most varied fashions. But I cannot discuss these works until I have developed the theories to which their authors have referred. Whatever has appeared to me as valuable in this recent literature, I have accordingly reviewed in the course of the following exposition.... About Dream Interpretation

The Complete Dream Book

To dream of quails signifies bad news from sea, debates, quarrels, piracy, ambuscades, and treachery.... The Complete Dream Book
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