exploring the unconscious world of Dreams through Myth, Symbols & Metaphor
the psychology of dreams....a Jungian perspective

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Dream Theatres of the Soul:
Empowering the Feminine Through Jungian Dream Work
& Their Interpretation(s)
Dreams About The Shadow

Dream 1 - Dream 2 - Dream 3 - Dream 4 - Dream 5 - Dream 6
These are personal dreams and interpretations from Jean's book Dream Theatres of the Soul

The Junk Lady

The Dream

I am leaning over a wide, deep chasm. On the other side are several shelves filled with junk. I reach out for a large ring, but it falls to the bottom and get lsot in the mud. As it falls it sparkles, as if made of diamonds. I wonder if a diamond ring was hiden in all this junk.

A woman's voice calls out from below. "You cannot take a ring", she says. "You can take anything else but not a ring". I wonder why.

Now I am below with the woman. She is seated at a desk beside more junk filled shelves. She is the junk lady. She is dressed in gypsy-styled, loose clothing. I wonder what it would be like to live outdoors like this. What does she do when it gets cold? Later I see her eating at a picnic table under a tree. I marvel at the free, pleasant life she leads. She seems to be so together and contented. I admire her.


Chasm: forces deep in the unconscious. (anything deep and dark like a well or chasm often represents the unconscious).

Junk: inner garbage, i.e., disliked qualities (shadow qualities).

Ring: The Self; wholeness. (gold represents god, or your higher Self).

Diamonds: Purity, spirituality; also, the Diamond Center is an ancient name for the Self, the Christ within. (the importance of understanding mythology in relationship to dreams).

Junk Lady: A shadow figure; the Wild Woman.

Personal Meaning

This dream gave me an important clue about the status of my journey as well as the reason for my condition. I was reaching out into the unconscious (chasm) and striving for my spiritual center (diamond, ring), but it was still out of my reach. Why? Because my shadow (junk lady) said so. I was being denied wholeness bescause I had not yet accepted the aspect of my fuller soul that she represented: the willingness to leave behind my comfortable, familiar world and go out into the cold, to live with my inner garbage (junk), to follow my natural inclinations unconstrained by public opinion. I could watch and admire from afar, but until I could learn to live a free and natural life like the junk lady's, I would be denied wholeness.

Recognizing the meaning of this dream gave me more confidence to be true to myself in unconventional ways. For example, after years of writing about the research and ideas of others, I began to trust that my ideas were worth writing about, even though I knew that some people might scorn or reject them - just as a junk lady is often scorned and rejected.

Cultural Meaning

Each woman has a natural, spontaneous Wild Woman within. Some of us allow her to be a conscious part of our personalities. Others, who are perhaps more self-conscious or fastidious, keep her repressed. When repressed, she becomes our shadow and appears in our dreams as a gypsy, a bag lady, a madwoman, an eccentric old maid, a junk lady, or some other woman who lives outside the constraints of conventional society. She is the one who knows how to be true to herself, being her natural self. She is the one many of us reject, usually by puberty, when we realize these aspects of feminity are not acceptable to our social groups. The older and more civilized we get, the harder it becomes to get back in touch with our genuine, unaffected, earthy nature.

On the soul-making journey (the hero-heroine journey in mythology) toward feminine empowerment, we discover the Wild Woman. She is the one who knows where the diamond ring of spiritual wholeness is hidden; she has the authority to bestow it upon us when we are ready. As long as our egos fear the negative judgement of our peers, we force the Wild Woman to remain in the dark chasm with the junk. But if our egos are willing to risk entering the chasm and inviting the Wild Woman into our conscious life, we can release the natural, instinctive parts of ourselves, the inner companion who feels free to wear what she likes, eat when and where she chooses, be honest with others (moral issues), and do work she loves (creative self). Allowing the Wild Woman to emerge into our conscious lives is a satisfying reward of our journey to the Self.

This dream is from Jean Benedict Raffa's book 'Dream Theatres of the Soul'.
About Jean Benedict Raffa GO

Dream 1 - Dream 2 - Dream 3 - Dream 5 - Dream 6


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