DREAM STUDIES - 50 DIFFICULT DREAMS ANALYSED
Ants swarm dream
THE DREAM I was living in a rental house. I think I was living there by myself, but a girlfriend (unidentified) was there with me at the time. There was a hole in my roof from the hurricanes we had this year and I noticed a bunch of ants coming in through the roof. This was in the living room.
I called the landlord who said he couldnt get anyone out to fix the house till the weekend was over. I thought since it was just a few ants that it would be okay. BUT, the ants started to swarm, there were like millions of them dropping from the hole in the ceiling. My best friend and I sprayed each other down with ant killer as they were falling all over us and biting us all over our bodies, particularly our backs since we were turning away from them as they dropped.
Then a hole opened up in my bedroom - dont know if the ants caused the hole or not. There were swarms and swarms of ants coming down and it was like they were mostly swarming around the ceiling and only hundreds were dropping down to where we were. I couldnt afford to have anyone come out to fix the ceilings and most people said they didnt know how to handle that many ants anyway. The landlord would not send anyone until Monday and said I would just have to deal with it.
Then the ants started really swarming and so much that they were forming into big balls and looked like tornados of ants. I was really concerned that the situation was going to get much worse. Then all of a sudden, like someone was on the roof with a huge vacuum cleaner the ants just flowed out back through the holes in the living room ceiling and the bedroom ceiling. There were still stragglers on us and on the ground and around, but we killed them with the ant spray.
Then my coworker I swap jokes with was standing near my couch and put his arm around me and pulled me close and kissed me. I told him, "its about time you did that. I know you've wanted to." And we sat on the couch kissing before moving into the kitchen were a neighbor drove by the kitchen door and wanted to know if we wanted anything from McDonald's as he was on his way there.
THE REALITY The dreamer had left her husband and the cult that they were both living in. Just recently she had been reflecting over the past and how the cult had dominated her life. She now was starting to do normal things like send Christmas cards. That was the type of thing that had been before quite illegal within the cult.
ANTS : "overwhelming obedience to the group - in this case the control the cult had over her"
BED : "something that affects you in a very personal way"
BEST FRIEND : "an ideal picture of how things should be"
CLEAN : "restore your pride in something - restoring order and purifying your mind"
COWORKER : "working through this emotional issue "
HOUSE : "your personality and how you are behaving to the world around you"
HURRICANE : "inability to think clearly - the cult controls her mind "
KILL : "trying to resist and kill off the influence of the cult"
KITCHEN : "thinking through your future and how to make life more interesting"
LIVING ROOM : "things in general in your life - your real life conscious day to day world in practice"
PEOPLE : "comparing your behavior in some way - comparing her behavior in the cult and now since she has left the cult"
SPRAY : "intense effort to resist the cult"
STRAGGLER : "remnant of some old way of seeing the world"
THE INTERPRETATION The main symbol in this dream is the ants.
ANTS : Ants are extremely conformist animals. They always act in the wider interests of the group. They therefore symbolise conforming to some behavior. An ant dream could symbolise some strong group or society in general who impose standards of behavior on people.
The ants therefore symbolise the way the cult imposed standards of behavior on the dreamer. But notice that after a short while the ants stay just around the ceiling. That shows that the dreamer limited the impact on herself. Indeed she stated : "I had been adopting the doctrine of the cult without questioning it because in the beginning it was fascinating to learn and then I began to question things being taught but was met with much resistance. In order to not be labeled as a troublemaker and rebellious which would have destroyed my marriage I pretty much played a Stepford believer. "
The ant spray is clearly symbolic of how the effect of the cult was brought under control. Maybe the dreamer could "not afford" to get the problem seen to because she could not afford to reject the cult at first because she knew that would result in the end of her marriage.
Notice that the dream is a couch dream. That symbolised how the dreamer had only recently started to deal with this issue. Quite often a quote will be included in the dream which on its own makes no sense for instance "its about time you did that. I know youve wanted to". In reality that quote perfectly captures the dreamers emotions. She HAD been needing to think through the cult and its effect on her. The kiss in the dream with her coworker is symbolic of how she had "worked through" the issue.
The mcDonalds is a symbol of normality and indeed of everyday American mainstream life. But for the dreamer this represented everything that the cult was against. So dropping by McDonalds represents an acceptance of mainstream society and its values. She had recently sent out Christmas cards for the first time(the word Christmas was banned in the cult). She had also done other things forbidden in the cult : She had bought a cross necklace (idolatry according to the cult); she moved into a new house with a mortgage(a major sin of debt according to the cult); She was drinking more than two glasses of wine or beers with friends (forbidden because it leaves one open to devil spirit possession); she was in therapy and on antidepressants (a weakness and not relying on God according to the cult);
Often the venue of the dream is important. KITCHEN : the kitchen is the symbol of future plans. It symbolises how we are looking to the future thinking through what it is we enjoy and what we want to do.
Earlier the bedroom features : BEDS : Beds symbolise issues which are intensely personal and affect us very deeply. The cult was obviously affecting her very deeply and very personally.
The house is a rental house. A house is often symbolic of the self or of your own approach to some issue. If the house is not owner occupied then perhaps that links to how someone else is dictating everything that you do. That you must conform to every request. That would again be consistent with the cult.
The dream captures the following feeling within the dreamer - "I left a religious cult a few months ago. I have been thinking over my times since then. I have started to do normal things such as enjoy Christmas and go to MacDonalds(all which were banned when I was a member of the cult)"
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