Recently, I wrote a post about a recurring dream I’ve been experiencing lately. Because I’m an INFJ I am known to be more intuitive and aware of my inner world of thoughts and consciousness. I’ve been having another recurring dream every few weeks for the last year that I wanted to explore in regards to my search to understand myself.
This dream usually takes place in Jamaica or an island perceived to be like Jamaica but with less crime, almost no people and fantastic views. It always centers around exploring and finishes with how important it is for me scrambling to the surface to see the final sunset of my get-away. I feel warm, happy and optimistic- yet constrained.
I’m often there on vacation, or within a limited time frame. At some point there is an opportunity to dive underwater and go exploring. I approach the opportunity with enthusiasm and get suited up. While swimming underwater with the fish and coral, I notice some far off caverns full of beautiful colors and tunnels that are shrouded in mystery. I swim towards them and without fear begin to explore.
While exploring the caverns, the water feels warm and fresh. The underground cave system is neverending, colorful and inviting. I’m not worried about safety, only concerned with the adventure of exploring the caverns. I am always alone while swimming through my own personal enigma. I don’t recall ever finding anything tangible, more just the act of exploring and swimming in and out of these majestic caverns.
I don’t ever remember getting out of the water, but before I realize it, I’m standing on a beach watching the sunset. Either the sunset has already started or it’s almost over and I’m always racing to catch it. I am always obsessed with taking pictures of the sunset (however I think that’s more psychologically rooted in my obsession with taking pictures). Half the time I wake up before the sun completely sets; the times I don’t wake up before it sets, somehow my camera gets ruined, lost, or the pictures didn’t take right and I am left with only a memory of the sunset (a memory within a dream–woah).
So in the context of reality- what does this all mean?
In the mind of an INFJ there will always be more I can do to be more authentic, happier, more successful etc. I am in a pretty intense phase of discovering myself (the close to 30 bug), and this dream is sort of an echo of my waking experiences.
Dream interpretation, while not widely viewed with much credibility, has been around for as long as there have been dreams. I took the liberty of looking up different aspects of this recurring dream on multiple websites, and surprisingly they were all pretty congruent (Research below is paraphrased from those websites).
“Water as a dream symbol represents your current emotional state of mind…” i.e. being deep underwater represents being submerged in my own unconscious mind. Exploration underwater parallels with exploring my own mind (and goes right along with what my waking mind has been focused on). It’s important to note that the water is inviting, almost to the point of total obsession in the dream.
Swimming in a dream suggests that I am exploring aspects of my subconscious mind and emotions. Being completely submerged while swimming indicates I’m being overwhelmed by my current state of mind, and I am forcing myself to deal with it.
Caves symbolize the unconscious and represent my ability to withdraw into myself. To enter and explore is to gain the process of awareness of transformation.” There may be repressed memories or enlightenment hiding in the caverns as they are created locations within the mind that serve the soul. This is the hidden side of myself, and dreaming about such caves can be a sign that I am turning my focus inward and facing my “deeper self.” Cave dreams are common during periods of transformation.
Foreign places in dreams can represent things that are new and different such as big life changes or decisions. These foreign places often seem to mimic reality, trying to be both familiar and mysterious.
Sunsets in your dream indicate the end of a cycle or condition. It is a period of rest, contemplation and evaluation. The sunset is always at the end of my dream, and thus I believe it means that the dream is over until the next time– end of a cycle.
Cameras in my dream signify my desire to get a clearer picture of an idea, or that I need to focus on a particular situation in life. Cameras also show a connection to the memory, and can be representative of the past. To dream that the camera is broken or that I cannot find it implies that I am not fully-focusing on the matter at hand. Additionally, cameras in a dream refer to forgotten memories.
So, essentially, my subconscious/unconscious mind is open to the possibility of change and exploration. I don’t feel fear but excitement at the prospect of being a fuller, happier person and so in my dream, I display the same enthusiasm for the symbolism. I dream about being submerged underwater because I am hyperfocused on my emotions and my subconscious self (mind) development. The sunset symbolizes the end of the dream and not being able to capture the sunset could mean that I haven’t finished all the exploring I need to do. I can’t take the memory (pictures) of the sunset with me, just like I can’t take all of the data that I uncovered back into reality and that’s okay.
I am facing my deeper self in both waking life and while sleeping; since I seem to be working WAY overtime, why doesn’t anything seem clearer? Regardless, I’m still searching to understand myself and the universe, whether it be one day or one dream at a time.