This matter of not being "honest" in dream work can be tricky.

For one thing I have mentioned several times about how important trust is in doing dream work with others. But in that context I am referring to the ways in which the people involved deal with each other and with the images presented and the "facts" which have been gleaned perhaps over extended periods of dream sharing. The surest way I know of to avoid having trust issues arise is by speaking in the first person. (I.e., by sending "I messages," usually beginning with the phrase, "if this were my dream," or some equivalent construct.)

But there's another rather subtle and unexpected matter with "honesty."

Suppose I do present my dream about having a romantic encounter with George and my having had a romantic encounter with 'Olaf.' I'm amazed at how often the change of names (or other substitutions) turns out to be deeply revealing once the work on the dream begins. This happens so regularly that I have come to the conclusion that in making the selection of the subsititute name (or whatever) we have to access the same part of ourselves that generates dreams!

Of course I can be certain that the original image (in this case, "George") had been chosen with care to help point the way to the issues the dream was presented to show me. I mean, in my waking life the person I recognize in the dream as George, has a certain specific set of associations and emotions and the dream was created knowing and, indeed, relying on these. And, since dreams love word play, the specific name "George" (or, expanded, "George Loveless" or his/her nickname "Georgie") likely points somewhere productive all on its own. I can transfer the associations from the person name "George" to the same person renamed, for this purpose of disguise, "Olaf," but the names themselves might be revealing in different ways.

Pease write to me, Maury Merkin. I'd love to know you visited.
Last modified: Mon Sep 26 08:27:17 EDT 2005
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