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Big or small, don't ignore the presence of animals in your dreams.
It’s easy to write off an elaborate dream as vivid imagination, but often dreams are direct expressions of our own states of being - our subconscious and conscious chatters that find voice when our mind slips into slumber. In many ways dreams are the realities we manifest when asleep, just like the realities we manifest and inhabit during our waking life. These dreams resonate directly with our energetic state of being - how we are emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually.
Be it a beautiful adventure through rainbows and clouds or a nightmare in the deep down under, your dreams are windows to your own self. Very often they are signs and insights that you miss out or ignore in your waking life, wisdom that comes knocking on your door because you just aren’t listening when awake. What you dream thus is more than just a wild fantasy - it is a picture of what and what you are, painted from the inside out. And it is here, while asleep and dreaming, we are very often helped by our animal friends.
Your Dream Animal Represents an Aspect of You
Every scene, every individual, every animal you encounter in your dreams mirrors an aspect of your own soul, your own self back to you - just like they do in waking life. Whether it is a panther who graces your nocturnal adventures or a cute little rabbit, whether you are running away from them or diving deep into the abyss on their backs, animals you dream of are metaphorical fragments of your own self.
A Saint Bernard could represent your undying loyalty while a lone wolf could symbolize your hunger to explore and roam through life on your own terms. A butterfly is a common symbol of gentle transformation while a vicious rodent could indicate your own ruthlessness in life. There is a vast volume of information available online about the symbolism of animals, the energies they embody. However, I do feel it is always vital to first ask yourself what you own mind says on the matter, how it views an animal - it is after all the author of your dreams.
The Key Lies in Feelings
The most inspiring dream as well as the most disturbing dream I have had have involved me swimming with a python. Yet one left me floating in bliss for days after while the other forced me into reflecting on my recent choices at the time. By itself the python represented an impartial energy - a creative force that lay within me and was looking to unleash itself. It was my own life choices and experiences at each point that gave the python its context, that colored the dream enchanting or scary. I am sure to be quite jittery if I ever found myself swimming with a python in real life, but how I felt during the dream told me exactly which aspects of my subconscious I was exploring and their character - reassuring or challenging.
When interpreting your own dreams, don’t be quick to judge the animals you meet. Instead, listen to their message not just by watching their actions or speaking to them, but also, and more importantly, by observing how you feel and what you are thinking while they are with you.
Work with the Animal Energy
Even if you spent your whole dream running away from an animal, it might serve you to explore their energy, find their message and dive into it. A predator brings certain positive attributes with it which when tapped into can help us find the key to personal evolution and transformation. In my dreams for instance, knowing that the python embodied an inherently creative force helped me focus on how I was channeling my own creative energies and the choices I was making. Since I was swimming with the python, and water is a direct metaphor for emotions, I knew the dream was the direct results of my recent experiences with family and loved ones.
You could of course meditate on a dream and invite the spirit of the animal into your waking life to discover its message. But whichever path you choose to explore your dream, make sure to let no animal presence go unnoticed. Even the smallest of them can have the biggest insights for you!
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