Date with the Selkie.
I dreamed seals again. I was strolling along a rocky shore in the evening. As I went over some boulders I noticed a man and a child standing beside an injured seal. They called for help and I agreed to wait with the seal. The seal had an injured eye and at first was apprehensive but it allowed me to approach it eventually. I sat beside it and began gently stroking it to calm and comfort it. The evening turned into a pitch black night and it got really cold. I ended up cuddling up to the seal to kept myself and them warm. As I lay beside them the seal, it suddenly turned into a man. They were fairly handsome and also had an injured eye, only it was the opposite one to the seal. He expressed gratitude and invited me for a walk to show me his world. He took me to a small town up on a gentle hill. We were strolling through the high street like a couple on a date. The place was magical. There was a small arty cinema and very atmospheric Café Goetia. My Selkie man invited me for a dinner to his favorite seafood restaurant. It was a wonderful dream.
Different faces of the sea.
When I was a child I loved luxury and pleasure. My mum agreed for me to use her makeup and jewelery on Saturdays and I loved playing with them in front of the mirror. I was obsessed with hairstyles and beauty. I also loved going out shopping. She would take me to cafés and restaurants and buy me little gifts. Sometimes my mum would take me out of school pretending that I have a doctors appointment and we would have a fun day in the town instead. We also began skipping church to go and have a coffee and cake. It was my mums way of making it up to me for our difficult life situation. Nothing embodied it more than our summer holidays on the sea side. I loved strolling along the beach staring into shimmering waves, collecting shells and sea glass. They were all little treasures to me. We would often stop in a bar for a meal and a cocktail. Occasionally I was allowed an alcoholic one. To me the sea was abundant and rich and it provided me with tons of pleasure. I felt a strong connection to the sea and when I found an amber on a beach I felt like I got married to it.
The sea had a different side to it as well. When I first time saw it I began crying because it scared me. It was huge and noisy and I didn’t like it. This overpowering nature of the sea lives on in my nightmarish dreams of giant waves and storms that swallow everything and drag me into their depths. During my holidays we often went to swim during the storm. It was irresponsible and dangerous. I knew the danger but was willing to risk it because the storm was so powerful and amazing. It seemed that i was playing with a monster that could devour me any minute but chose not to. It was wild and thrilling and I loved it.
I recognize that all of these experiences embody something very archetypal about the sea and our relationship to it. The sea represents the unconscious talking to us in language of dreams, feelings and visions, a dark force to be reckoned with, but also a generous and deeply caring one. The sea provided us with an abundance of food, it allowed us to travel and explore and nurtured civilizations by doing so; but it would always remind us of its deadly power. My dreams of waves and of seals embody these seemingly contradictory features. The underlying motif of my seal dreams seems to be compassion and love. They also deal with healing and preventing hurt. The dreams of waves, although very threatening, often involve people helping each other to escape the disaster. It creates an impression of a force or personality that is incredibly gentle and caring but capable of obliterating violence. One that above all nurtures a sense of community and friendship but also fierce individuality.
Fire vs Water
As I approached puberty I began growing apart from the sea. My dream was to be a soldier and I spent more and more time with boys. I remember taking a test in a magazine that would characterize you as one of the elements. I scored water. It made me very angry because this was all about feminine boring things that I wanted to have nothing to do with. People described water as negative, passive and fire as positive and active. Water seemed depressive, submissive and introverted whilst fire appeared thrilling, confident and extrovert. I hoped to be the fire. In fact so much so that I retook the test until I managed to tick the answers that gave me fire. I didn’t stop there either. I made sure that in my life I acted fire too. I felt independent, strong, confident etc. It never occurred to me at the time, that all this effort was driven by the need to conform. The qualities commonly associated with fire are glamorized in our culture, which seems to be a result of patriarchal religion and the connection of the monotheist sun gods to fire. At the same time fire has an association to hell, the devil and therefore counter-culture. Water seems to be more equated with illusion and deception. It’s power like that of the moon is said to be a mere reflection of the real deal.
My water dreams led me to a self discovery. By becoming a fire at all costs I forgot some very important things. I forgot that I deserve all that is the best in life. I ended up constantly pushing myself to the limit and striving for some kind of perfection. I became tough but mostly on myself. I wanted to be the light shining for the others. It became very difficult for me to accept help because self reliance became my ultimate goal. I believed in the myth of our culture saying that hard and tough people get what they want. Water, in my opinion, does not create and sustain illusions as much as it reminds us that they exist. The light of truth is all good and well but we all totally should indulge ourselves in some daydreaming, luxury and fun. Without them we simply become incapable of compassion towards both ourselves and others. It seems to be in our nature to dream, to love and to reach for pleasure and I suggest that the biggest illusions of all would be to deny it. I do not see anything passive in enjoying life. It seems to me that joy and power go hand in hand and both taste better when we share them with others. Water teaches us how to be an individual as part of the collective. We do not have to loose ourselves to it. We can become it instead. A single drop of water may seem to passively fall from the sky and helplessly splat on a pavement but when you face a tsunami you may understand waters true potential.
The power to the people
My dreams expressed a fundamental understanding that to be able to explore ourselves as individuals and find our own strength we need community. We need to reflect on ourselves by diving into the collective subconscious and by looking each other in the eye. If the understanding and knowledge can not be shared and transfered to others it becomes meaningless. I find this truth being poetically expressed in current world events. We see people pulling together and exploring consciousness, its scope and value, perhaps for the first time. We are becoming like an ocean: interconnected, unpredictable, abundant and immensely powerful. We all seem to recognize our self worth and demand what we deserve in life. We come from a society where giving became devalued and taking glamorized and the common person sees it the wrong way round. Instead of recognizing that those who give have control we are taught that those who give lose it. People hoarding money and power have nothing to give. We, on the other hand, have nothing to lose. In reality we all share everything . We live an illusion and it seems we always will. We just need to take the responsibility to create one worth living in. Perhaps then our society will reflect our Higher Self.