Gestalt Dream Work
with Professor Nori Muster
Dreams are infinitely complex, mysterious, and full of treasures for the dreamer. Writing about dreams may help reveal their gifts. One productive way to work with a dream is to write it down, then write a better ending. This is like you might do while lucid dreaming, but here you are fully awake, working on your dream with pen and paper.
Suppose you have one of those dreams where you are at school, but cannot find your classroom, or you cannot remember the class, or where it is. Then you wake up. Using pen and paper you can make up an ending. You could say, "I have always wanted to take a class on drawing from dreams, so that is the class I looking for. I stop at the office to ask for help. A friendly woman gives me directions to the classroom. I arrive just on time and the teacher smiles at me."
You can write any conclusion you want, because it is your dream. Rewriting dreams is a good way to communicate with your subconscious mind and tell it how you would like to resolve a situation in your life.
Gestalt Dialogue with Dreams
Fritz Perls, M.D. (Friedrich Salomon Perls, 1893-1970) was a psychiatrist and psychotherapist, and founder of Gestalt therapy. He was one of the masters of dream work in the twentieth century. He taught his students that every aspect of a dream represents the dreamer. In his workshops, he asked dreamers to talk to dream symbols to find out more about them. Perls introduced the empty chair technique for dreamers. The subject sits in one chair and imagines that a person he or she wants to talk to is sitting there in the empty chair. It gives the person a chance to address any unfinished business. An empty chair dialogue may bring up long buried, painful memories, giving them a chance to be aired in a non-judgmental, safe, and loving environment. This technique has brought peace of mind to many people.
Perls also taught his students to talk to dream characters and dream objects in the empty chair. You can try this on your own. For example, if you have a dream about a spider, imagine it on the empty chair and ask it why it was in your dream. Write down your conversation in your dream journal. If this technique works for you, you will be surprised at the insights your dream characters will give you. You may sit in the empty chair and speak for them, because they are really part of your own psyche.