Dear Dream Detective:
Last week I dreamed that I was riding up a ski lift. I was half way to the top when I noticed that instead of wearing protective rubber ski boots, I had on a flimsy pair of thongs. My feet were totally exposed and I realized that I wouldn’t be able to go skiing. I felt very disappointed.
Ithaca, New York
Susan is presently working towards a BA degree in nursing. Recently she visited her sister who is married and living in Aruba. While Susan consciously affirms that the right life is one spent in service to humanity, she fantasizes about meeting a rich man in Aruba, and not having to work at all.
The Solution to the Mystery
Skiing symbolizes “taking a free ride.” It’s an image of the easy life. It’s downhill all the way. But sliding is also experienced by people as immoral. We say of a person without ethics that he or she is slimy, greasy, oily, slick, slippery, etc. All of these words suggest that the person is sliding past limits, conditions, and responsibilities. Just as the negative consequences of his actions are about to grab him, he slides past them.
Living in Aruba is like skiing. It would be the free and easy life, something for nothing. Your temptation is symbolized by your starting up the ski lift. But you realize that you can’t; you would injure your feet. The feet symbolize the soul/sole, our deepest feelings. This is understandable if we consider that the feet are the point at which we are open to direct contact with the earth. You realize that if you were to go skiing (i.e. move to Aruba and forsake nursing) that you would injure your soul. Your soul would become cold and hard (frozen feet). You would, in essence, become an unfeeling, selfish, immoral person.
Your dream doesn’t resolve the conflict for you, but in stating clearly the essence of the conflict, in crystallizing the conflict, it brings your mind to a level where the conflict can be seen, understood and eventually transcended.
Mark “Sherlock” Dillof
In each issue of The Dream Detective, we shall analyze another dream. E-mail your dreams to Mark. Please include relevant background information. If your dream is chosen, it will appear in The Dream Detective! Names will be changed to protect the guilty, and letters will be re-written so they are more concise.