Interpreting Dreams & Visions Through Eastern Philosophy

GuillerminaGalvanAuthor: Guillermina Galvan

Dreams and visions may be interpreted by masters from different fields as signs from the heavens, your spirit, precognitive, past lives, astral projections and what is going on in your body. Though it is best to have the guidance of a skilled dream analyst to assist you in interpretation, here are a few tips from an Eastern perspective on understanding some of your messages.

Before we begin to understand the meaning we must understand the base of Eastern philosophy. This base is founded on the 5-element theory. The following diagram is shown in the creation and controlling cycle form.

diagramThe creation cycle goes: Metal -> Water -> Wood -> Fire -> Earth

The controlling cycle goes: Metal -> Wood -> Earth -> Water -> Fire

The 5-Element Theory

The five elements are an ancient Chinese philosophical concept and tool used to represent all the natural processes that occur around us and within us. They are used to categorize everything from flavors, to emotions, to animals and even organs and parts of the body. This system has also been used to describe everything from long-term weather patterns to how your minute-by-minute emotions affect your health. Of course here we are most concerned with understanding the cycle so we can understand the messages that are within our dreams.

Fire – This element represents the shining sun of summer that resides in the south (to us in the Northern hemisphere) and provides us with the sparks of intelligence and insight that are the hallmarks of awareness. In our bodies it represents the heart, the pericardium, the small intestine and the “triple warmer” – organs that spiritually relate to how we connect with awareness to the outside world. When troubled it represents mania, excessive action of laughing and/or talking when we are not well connected to our bodies and the earth. In balance it represents trust in relationships and the ability to open our hearts through unconditional love.

Earth – This element represents the center around which all others revolve and provides us with the fertility and abundance that come when we respond to the nurturing and sustaining force of the Earth who gives herself to all living beings. In our bodies it represents the stomach and spleen which help us to digest and use the nourishment we take in so that we may be strong enough to give help to others. When troubled it represents the worry that comes from having a narrow viewpoint and by being preoccupied over details of past, present and future such as anxiety and pensiveness. When disturbed it also causes us to be dependent on the approval and sympathy of others. When in balance it helps ground us and be the positive center to help all beings.

Metal – This element represents autumn and the time of sunset when we retreat within to reflect on what is truly important to us and to make peace with the truth that all things are impermanent. In our bodies it represents the lungs and large intestine which help us to take in what is essential and of worth and to let go what no longer serves us by enjoying the present moment and being alive. When troubled it represents the grief and sadness we hold onto from the past that doesn’t allow room for growth. This makes it difficult to realize the most valuable things in life are those things that are the least substantial and unable to be bought or possessed. When metal is in harmony we are able to adapt to change and be able to stand strong with peace when negative emotions surround us.

Water – This element represents the winter when the light has retreated within in order to concentrate its strength to be born again. It teaches us how to conserve and how to value what gifts we have been given. In the body it represents the kidneys and the urinary bladder which both relate to how we manage our own internal resources and how we perceive what others possess. When troubled it represents fear – all aspects of fear, from fear of being accepted, to fear of love, fear of trust, fear of heights etc. When in balance water represents the strength of wondrous willpower to achieve your dreams.

Wood – This element represents the spring when nature triumphantly bursts forth in all her beautiful glory. It can guide us how to grow and how we, like nature every spring, can renew ourselves each day. The young sprouting plant teaches us that growth and change are best dealt with through quiet determination and a commitment to being flexible. To be flexible and strong like bamboo is a goal in life through Eastern philosophy. We may be swayed by the winds of change but we are not toppled over. When troubled it represents anger. All forms of anger from road rage to anger in an argument, to low tolerance for others. This anger clouds our ability to see the truth – that only we are to blame for our frustration. We cannot see that we have the ability to recreate ourselves anew each day and follow our dreams through a quiet determination that remains flexible and forever joyful around any and all obstacles. When in balance we are without anger and without judgment –we are enlightened.

This cycle continues without fail throughout time, and by paying attention to nature’s rhythms and messages we can better understand how to live a healthy and peaceful life. We can also come to see that each element balances and controls another at the same time it gives birth to the one after it. The cold winter of “water” is controlled and balanced by the heat of summer or “fire.” And we see this also in the body. The solid grounding aspect of the “water” kidney energy keeps the heart’s “fire” in check so that we don’t become detached from this world and our bodies. So even though they oppose each other, these elements need each other in order to remain in harmony.

The opposite, however, is true when aspects of our life go against the natural grain and we experience illness and discomfort. The elements can “over-act” on each other and cause problems. The “wood” of the liver is easily disturbed by stress, anger and intense feelings – this increased energy goes to the element that wood controls – earth. The stomach then has problems – you lose your appetite or get stomach pains when you feel angry or stressed or you get nauseous when you hear bad news.

Now, to better understand what your dreams and/or visions in meditation are telling you and how to use Eastern philosophy to look at it.

The following is a small list of some things you may see in your dreams/visions and to know what organ and element they relate to. Once you are able to access which organ/element the dream/vision belongs to you are able to understand what your spirit is telling you in regards to your body. Understanding these messages helps us better know how to help our own bodies and spirit to attain greater harmony within.

Your visions correlate to the organs/element that need some attention to reach a greater harmony and balance within your body and/or spirit.

Liver: trees, plants, grasses, green, mushrooms, anger.
Urinary Bladder: traveling, flying, ships, water, jealousy.
Heart: mountain on fire, fire, red, homes, laughing.
Lungs: metallic objects, white, bloody killings, knives, swords, grief, crying, flying (sometimes this is astral traveling but flying here is in reference to the majority of times in your dreams or meditation visions).
Gall Bladder: suicide, self-inflicting with objects.
Large Intestine: farm field, field of grass, penmanship.
Small Intestine: town, street, tall buildings, fire.
Kidney: spine getting torn out, water, drowning, fear.
Stomach: food, out of food, penmanship.
Spleen: cliff, mountains, rocks, homes, older buildings, damp area, eating specific food, being up high looking down, earthworm, anxiety, singing.
Waves: strong emotions.
Snakes, insects: Evil Qi (a negative energy that you have experienced earlier or currently in life and is causing you problems either physically, emotionally or spiritually). It is a good sign to see the evil qi as it is one of the first steps in healing and helping it leave in a loving manner.
Food: when specific foods are shown it is important to take note of them this may be the stomach and spleen’s way of telling you what foods are causing you harm either by physical, emotional connection or overeating.

Understanding some of the messages we receive from dreams or seeing them through our third eye helps give us a map as to what organs and element we need to work on to help us achieve harmony within. Ways to work on your weaker elements could be through a qi practice such as, but not limited to: meditation, Yoga, Qi Gong, Tai Qi, Sun Do and Ba Gua.

Although it is best to have the guidance of a skilled dream analyst help you in interpretation, hopefully this opens a new understanding of what may be going on within from an Eastern perspective.

Happy dreams & visions to all! Chat Now with Guillermina Galvan!

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