Anima, soul, supreme meaning: Reading Carl Jung’s Red Book in 5 (easy) steps


This is Mindfunda's presentation for the Dream Weekend organized by the Dutch society for dreamers: Vereninging voor de Studie van Dromen (VSD) . Unfortunately influenza payed me an uninvited visit. I was not able to attend the weekend. Aad van Ouwerkerk, author and dream worker read my presentation to the visitors. I thank him for doing that.

We all have been there: in total darkness. Lost and alone, looking for a new way of life. A new way of being. Carl Jung began writing the Red Book on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Mindfunda looks at his search for the supreme meaning in five (easy) steps. Because this will be a long post I have divided it into five seperate chapters. By clicking on each part it will guide you to the step I am talking about.

This is a series of blogs about my proces of dreaming my way through the Red Book. I have divided it into five steps:

  1. Carl Jung
  2. Psychic Powers and dreams
  3. Animus/anima dreams
  4. God
  5. the Self.

This blog will talk about the first step: Carl Gustav Jung and what led up to writing the Red Book.

The anima will be everywhere. The anima is the soul. Carl Jung his first concept of the soul was the female principle. The soul he thought he had lost when he gave so much (maybe too much) of himself to science.



The first time ever I saw the Red Book at the Jungian institute, I wanted it. I did not actually crave to read it, I just wanted to have it. to open it up from time to time, read, try to read the caligraphy written in German, enjoy the art.

Take a look for yourself if you haven’t had the chance yet (sponsored link to

Red Book - Carl Jung - Readers Edition (sponsored link to support this blog)
Red Book – Readers Edition (sponsored link to support this blog)

But at a given moment I mailed to some good friends of mine. People who are experienced dreamers. I invited them to read the Red Book with me and to incubate dreams and discuss them:

Jodine Grundy,
 Licensed Professional Counselor and former president of the International Association of Dreams.
Tim Schaming in training by Robert Moss who will make him realize that he already is a dream teacher.
Maria Cernutoproducer / researcher / writer/ makeup artist (and an extra ordinary gifted dreamer, who contributes to the site Dreams Cloud.
Linda Mastrangelo, Dream Worker, Researcher, Writer, Artist, and teacher .
Christian Gerike, Graduate student at Sonoma State University, Psychology Department, graduating on animals and dreaming.
Jenna Farr Ludwigdreamer, blogger on synchronicity and author.

This blog will talk about five (easy) steps:

  1. Carl Jung
  2. Telepathy and dreams
  3. Animus/anima dreams
  4. God
  5. the Self

But the anima will be everywhere. The anima is the soul. Carl Jung his first concept of the soul was the female principle. The soul he thought he had lost when he gave so much (maybe too much) of himself to science.

Carl Gustav Jung and the soul

Carl Jung (1875 -1961) was a psychiatrist living in Switzerland, married to one of the richest ladies of the country: Emma Rauschenbach. He was a charismatic man who was well liked by the ladies. One of those ladies, Tony Wolff, inspired the process described in the Red Book. She was Jung’s anima in the flesh.
The Red Book describes the process of Jung in search of his soul. His first concept of the anima was the soul. Later on he fine-tuned this process, making the anima part of the man’s psyche.

In 1913 Jung had a vision that lasted for about an hour. He saw blood. Red blood covering Europe. In his own words:

I saw a monstrous flood covering all the northern and low-lying lands between the North Sea and the Alps When it came up to Switzerland I saw that the mountains grew higher to protect the country. I realized that a frightful catastrophe was in progress. i saw the mighty yellow waves, the floating rubble of civilization, and the drowned bodies of uncounted thousands, Then the whole sea turned to blood. This vision lasted about one hour. I was perplexed and nauseated and ashamed of my weakness…

Two weeks past by then the visions recurred more vividly then before, and the blood was more emphasized. An inner voice spoke: “Look at it well, it is wholly real and it will be so, You can not doubt it”

Jung decided to stay with, and accept these visions. They later became part of a method called Active imagination. Stepping back into a dream or a vision and reliving the dream. Asking questions. Feeling feelings.
Many of us know about this part of the Red Book. Many of us see Jung as the shaman of the West because of this vision. Like a shaman he foresaw the horror facing many people. What do you think? Was it telepathy?

> Read on in part 2, about: Telepathy and dreams

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Eros in dreams

When was the last time you were mesmerized by somebody who took your breath away?

Eros is in the heart of every dream. I know that is a very romantic thought. When I interviewed Bart Koet about his book Spirituality and I suggested that maybe god, in the form of spirituality, is a part of every dream.

He did not agree with me. Some dreams are spiritual dreams other dreams are not.. But still I feel there is truth in the notion Jeremy Taylor once proclaimed:  “But the dream comes always in the service of health and wholeness, of the best and most complete and most creative being that we can be ”

Eros as Dionysos

“The cave is, traditionally, the location of Dionysos’ cult; the serpent, according to Kerenyi, is a life phenomenon, whose coolness, mobility, slippery character and, frequently, deathly threat, cause a highly ambivalent impression. The snake also represents the identity of Zoe, indestructible life, in its lowest form. The earth’s sun, from the depths, is Dionysos himself, “the light of Zeus”. Jung emphasized, in the corrected draft, the references about the Orphic representation of a stream of mud in the underworld.

The Orphics worshipped the first Dionysos (Zagreus), who was dismembered by the Titans. Zeus recovered his heart, and gave it to Semele in a drink, so that she would gestate it. With her death, Zeus placed Dionysos on his thigh, and from that the god was born, the second Dionysos -hence he is considered the god of death and rebirth. To protect him from Hera’s fury, Hermes gave him to Ino, who, together with her husband, King Atamas, raised Dionysos as a girl. His capacity to move between the world of genders is attributed to his living among women, thus he is seen as an androgynous god, in the sense of being able to integrate both masculine and feminine elements in his personality.


Unlike Apollo, the sun-god, representative of culture and civilization, Dionysos is associated with the mysteries of life and death, with vegetation, with consciousness associated with the depths, irrationality, a life fully lived, the emotions and sensuality that lead to an altered state of consciousness, and to transcendence through experience. Dionysos is considered the god of ecstasy and of enthusiasm, because his devotees, after a frenzied dance, “become enraptured”, and then “the god merges into his adorer, through enthusiasm”.

The Eros/Phanos picture was the target picture of the psiber conference orginized by the IASD. It is an online conference were people can read about psi- connections in dreams. And I do not consider it coincidence that I was reading the book about Jung his love life at the same time this image was selected as target picture!

This quotation I read in Maria Helena Guerra her book “The love drama of C.G. Jung”:

The love drama of C.G. Jung

This book is very much worth reading. (If you want to buy it just click on the link and go to Amazon, that way you will support Mindfunda). Maria weaves the strings of Jung’s process of constructing the Self in a web of the love triangle that was created after Jung introduced Tony Wolff into his home. She was his lover, his therapist, the one that kept him sane. She was the manifestation of his anima.

Tony Wolff

Eros as anima

This was Jung his dream:
In the dream I found myself in a magnificent Italian loggia with pillars, a marble floor and a marble balustrade. I was sitting on a gold Renaissance chair. in front of me was a table of rare beauty. It was made of green stone like emerald. There I sat, looking at a distance, for the loggia was set high up on the tower castle. My children were sitting at the table too.
Suddenly a white bird descended, a small sea-gull or a dove. Gracefully came to rest on the table, and I signed the children to be still so that they would not frighten away the pretty white bird. Immediately, the dove was transformed into a little girl ], about eight years of age, with golden blond hair. She ran off with the children and played with them among the colonnades of the castle.
I remained lost in thought, musing about what I had just experienced. The little girl returned and tenderly placed her arms around my neck. Then she suddenly vanished, the dove was back and spoke in a human voice: “Only in the first hours of the night can I transform myself to a human being, while the male dove is busy with the twelve death”. then she flew off into the blue air and I awoke”.

The dove as symbol of the anima


Eros in your life

How about you? When was the last time you were mesmerized by somebody who took your breath away? In your dreams? Or in your waking life?

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner, Stanley Krippner and P.M.H. Atwater, Catherine Wikholm about her book the Buddha Pill and Justina Lasley about her book Wake Up to Your Dreams: Transform Your Relationships, Career, and Health While You Sleep! Evan Thompson about his book Waking Sleeping Being.

Soon I will be interviewing Kate Adams and Bart Koet about their book Dreams and Spirituality.

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How Rolling Thunder redefined shamanism

Today's Mindfunda wants to celebrate Rolling Thunder's birthday, September 19. Rolling Thunder, whose birth name was John Pope, was a self-proclaimed shaman. He had a huge following, with famous people like Bob Dylan and the Grateful Death among them. But most of all he was in touch with nature. He had a remarkable ability to tune into the energies of nature.

Shamanism and healing

The Voice of Rolling Thunder

On the cover of this book, written by Stanley Krippner and his son Sidian Morning Star Jones you see a bird in the hands of Rolling Thunder. Before the photo was taken that bird lay wounded on the ground. Rolling Thunder picked the bird up and nurtured it. Soon, the bird started to come alive again and at that moment this photo was taken.
Even though there is question whether Rolling Thunder indeed had an Indian heritage, fact is that he was in tune with nature. He seemed to have an ability to pick up on nature’s rhythm and align his own energy with it.

Shamanism and pop culture

Rolling Thunder was popular with artists. He inspired Bob Dylan who did a Rolling Thunder tour. It is not clear if Bob Dylan named the tour after the healer, but Rolling Thunder is said to have appeared in some of the concerts to perform ceremonies. It was completely in line with the time frame: pop musicians like the Beatles in the seventies took people into the modern times but wanted to dip into the ancient wisdom. The Beatles introduced meditation by hooking up with Maharishi Yogi. Bob Dylan, but also the Grateful Death twirled around the magic of Rolling Thunder. Mickey Hart devoted a whole album to Rolling Thunder.

The archetypical qualities every pop star must have to become popular, have a magical appeal to the public. Rolling Thunder aligned with that appeal. I think he was able to do that because he seemed to be able to pick up energies so well.

Shamanism and energy

Rolling Thunder seemed to have this illumed power to tune into energy. i know that sounds vague. It is like buying a tooth-brush because it has thirty percent more hair in its brush. It can not be the ultimate success factor of this shaman. Let’s listen to Rolling Thunder himself in his foreword for Song of the Siren:

What scientists call physic phenomena, American Indians would refer to as “other world”. These phenomena are very important. In fact, they are the most important aspects of our lives. They have to do with life and death and sickness. They even have to with the rise and fall of governments.
Everything in the universe rises and falls and travels in cycles. These cycles are energy patterns created in the universe itself, then in the bodies of everyone living and everything that has a life. I think as scientists go more into explorations in this area, they will find that these energy patterns explain a lot‘.

Now this is a romantic view of life. It is something we crave. We know we have lost this connection to the earth and we grieve its loss every day. Looking at pop music today, it seems to have lost this bridge function between the old and the new. The new stars do not seem to have mentors. Or have I just become older?

Shamanism and you

I think that whenever you take a quit moment and you align with the natural rhythms around you, you can become your own shaman.
I think that Rolling Thunder had this great appeal to people because he had this genuine desire to unveil the secrets of the earth. And I think that we all long for this. That is why we all are moved by the words of Chief Seattle, of the Suquamish Indians. In his letter he writes:

Will you teach your children what we have taught our children? That the earth is our mother? What befalls the earth befalls all the sons of the earth.

This we know: the earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood that unites us all. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself“.

Like Rolling Thunder, he calls this alignment between the earth and the humans into being. And we live in a life that seems to have forgotten how much we are part of the earth. How we live, breath and are the earth itself. and how we will become part of her again after we leave this life.

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Stonehenge and sacred geography

Just this week you found out that there is another collection of stones near Stonehenge. 4,000 years ago it was built. And it is covered with earth. Why? Nobody knows. It is not excavated yet. Scholars have been tracing it down for years using remote sensing and geophysical tomography.

Stonehenge ikea


The monoliths are buried in the ground. What is more attractive and mysterious as a hidden landscape of stones. Did they create a gate towards Stonehenge? Did they fence off the natural avenue that Stonehenge formed with Durrington Wall? There is something magical about stones. Some people claim stones vibrate energy that can heal. But the gigantic stones once moved by human beings are simply impressive.

The magic of stones

For years I wanted to visit Stonehenge. The mystical place where the sun was honored and the turning of seasons was celebrated. Paul Deveraux writes in his book Sacred Geography:

Sacred Geography

The Stonehenge Riverside project took place between 2003 and 2009. A little more light has been shed on the sacred geography of the area as a result… When the mosaic pieces of archeological findings were put together, a picture emerged of a place being used to celebrate the recent dead and the river Avon being used as a link with Stonehenge, a place of the ancestors’.

Mike Pearson

The Riverdale project was led by Mike Pearson, professor of archaeology at Sheffield University. He led the Stonehenge Riverside Project from 2003 to 2009. He has appeared in Stonehenge, a decade of discovery.



Stones used to build it are not only from the area but also from the Preseli hills in Wales. In that way uniting two ancestral circles in England. He explains how ancestors, astronomy and the mid winter sunset are the most important features of the magic of Stonehenge.

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Golden Dawn: Talking to the Gods using magic

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” W.B. Yeats

Almost every one of us believes that we can tap into a greater pool of creativity if we only knew how to use the laws that can unleash our creative powers. This Mindfunda is going to shed a light on where those beliefs originate from.

Magic is everywhere right? In the eyes of a child, filled with promises and unfulfilled potencies. In the sunlight that kisses your skin. In the smile from your lover that left this morning. But we almost all have this uncanny feeling that there is so much more that lies hidden behind secret laws.

Of course we do not believe in magic anymore. We call it sorcery. But give us ‘The Secret’, based on wishing and visualization and we go wild. Give us the ‘The Celestine Prophecy’ and we change our lives. This craving to learn how to control the laws of nature is just the thing what brought about the Order of the Golden Dawn in the late 1800s.

Golden Dawn

Susan Graf talks about the Golden Dawn in her book ‘Talking to the Gods‘ using a very interesting perspective. She reviews four different authors, all still in print today, according to their magic qualities. The magic qualities they all four had learned about in the Secret order of the Golden Dawn.

Talking to the Gods
Susan Graf.
Buying the book using this link supports the good work of Mindfunda

The Golden Dawn was a secret occult society. The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn was founded in London in 1887. This order used esoteric knowledge from many cultures: Egyptian, Hindu, Jewish, Greek, Christian. The aim was to control the laws of nature and accomplish goals that would benefit the world.

The world was multi-layered according to the Golden Dawn and an initiate learned, like a shaman, to travel the different worlds using rites. There were different levels a Golden Dawn initiate could attain. At each level the initiate learned more secret rites about how to obtain entrance to one of the total of ten worlds. Each world being based on the Life tree of the Kabbalah, the Sephiroth. World number 10 was the realm closest to the earth and world number 01 was the world closest to God. So Susan Graf shows us the way the four writers: Yeats, Machen, Blackwood and Fortune used this knowledge to climb up to the realm of the Gods.

Susan Graf starts her book with a description of the Golden Dawn and its basic merits. A secret society for the upper middle class who tuned into the spiritual upheavel that accompanies the “fin de siècle”. Most of the members were well read, scolars even, that wanted to deal with the tension created between the new scientific findings and their old catholic and protestants beliefs.

Her choice of writers to compare: the famous W.B.Yeats, Arthur Machen and Algernon Blackwood belonged to the cultural elite of their days. Dion Fortune did not but she was the one writer who used her books to educate her readers about the magical laws of the Golden Dawn. She got more appreciated in the 60’s of the last century when the “Goddess movement” began its rise. Her book “Applied Magic” is still one of the best magic introduction books around.

Applied magic
Dion Fortune

Dion is the last writer to be discussed in the book and the only woman. She is the only one of the four who openly admitted to be occult. The other three men did not do that. But Susan had a different reason to pick them.

Even though all three were secret about their membership and their occult practices, magic was Yeats religion. He had 35 years of involvement in the Golden Dawn and was an established writer rewarded with the Nobel Prize. And even though the occult beliefs of the Golden Dawn are in his work he never openly violated his promise of secrecy.

Fairy and Folk Tales
W.B. Yeats

There was a sense that Yeats had of a “greater spiritual mind” that he could tap upon using magic. It enabled him to write Fairy and Folk tales of Irish peasantry. And even though he yearned to tell about his encounters with the fairy people he did not mention his magical knowledge to anyone.

Algernon Blackwood, had like Carl Jung, very a religious father who inspired him to search for his own method of experiencing religion.

golden dawn
Algernon Blackwood

Blackwood did not get the international recognition like Yeats dis, but his John Silence stories are still appealing today. They paint the hero of the Golden Dawn movement.

John Silence
Algernon Blackwood

The concept of God is like an enlightened doctor who travels the world on a healing mission in the service of all that is good and right. 

Arthur Machen was, just as Yeats and Blackwood, a member of the literary establishment of England and also kept his membership of the Golden Dawn a secret. But he did not capture the worldwide recognition of Yeats. The Great God Pan still is his most read publication.

The Great God Pan
Arthur Machen

And where Yeats was a Golden Dawn adept, Arthur Machen wanted to be inspired by the knowledge within. He already had a lot of spiritual knowledge. Compared to Yeats he was more reserved towards the Golden Dawn.

I have enjoyed reading Talking to the Gods. The perspective of looking at the Golden Dawn influence in the books of the writers gives us a lot of knowledge about the Golden Dawn. Everybody who works with symbols should get their hands on a copy of this book. The use of symbolism by the Golden Dawn has infiltrated todays art, books films and dreams. Reading Talking to the Gods makes you see how the wish for a new era, a new way of living for humanity is a shared vision of generations. This book makes you want to dive into your own rite to communicate with your higher self.

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner Stanley Krippner and P.M.H. Atwater. I will be doing an interview with Catherine Wikholm about her book the Buddha Pill very soon so be sure to sign up and with Justina Lasley about her book Wake Up to Your Dreams: Transform Your Relationships, Career, and Health While You Sleep!

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John Dee, betrayed friend or accomplice?

What if you were held in high regard at the court of the English Queen, lost her favor, dwelled over Europe in company of a man performing seances, traded wives, returned home again to find your home ruined…it happened to John Dee!

John Dee
John Dee

John Dee was a respected scholar and one of the confidants of Queen Elizabeth I in England in the 1550’s. He calculated the right time for her to be crowned in 1558. He was held in high regards for publishing his view on the importance of mathematics for the arts. Here you can find a newly published copy of this work:

John Dee –
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His proposals were refused time and time again. Once his hopes for a flourishing political career were gone he invested his energy in spiritual matters. He wanted to talk with angels. Maybe angels could help him to get the best out of life. The first man he hired was a complete disappointment but then Edward Kelley came into the picture.

Now we have the magicians that so many books and songs have been written about.
Melmoth the wanderer written by Charles Robert Maturin:  

The angel of the west window written by Meyrink:

written by no other than Crowley,

Snow White and Rose Red written by Patricia Wrede

and the Iron Maiden song The Alchemist to name a few. The two held daily seances and composed a ritual to hear messages from angels. They composed several works channeled by angels. These methods are still available and some say that you gain good results by practising them. It is called the Enochian method of magic.


John Dee
Complete enochian dictionary – –
(if you buy the book by clicking the picture you will support Mindfunda)

(if you buy the book by clicking the picture you will support Mindfunda)

In 1583 they met with alchemist and noble man Olbracht Łaski who invited them to join him in Poland. But he turned out to be out of favor at the Polish court and bankrupt so the two magicians went elsewhere. Training himself in alchemy, Edward Kelly convinced Emperor Rudolph II in Prague to hire his services. Here you can see a picture of the laboratory of Kelly in Prague:

Edward Kelly’s lab in Prague

Being more of a spiritual man, John Dee was far more interested in communicating with angels. John Kelly had become sought after, for his knowledge as alchemist. One day Kelly claimed that archangel Uriel had demanded that the two men would share everything. Yes everything, including their wives…

John Dee
Raising spirits making gold and swapping wives –
(if you buy the book by clicking the picture you will support Mindfunda)

(if you buy the book by clicking the picture you will support Mindfunda)

Can you imagine how old bird John Dee, 60 at that time, most have felt when flamboyant 32 year old Edward Kelly made out with his lady? But he agreed (and so did his wife) And did you know nine months later she gave birth to a baby boy? But is caused Dee to return to England. By this time Edward Kelly had been thrown in jail by Rudolph II because he had not been able to produce gold.

John Dee returned to England. His house was plundered during his 6 years of absence and the new King James I did not want him around. He had to sell his possessions, a lot of valuable books and died a poor man.

Two friends, two swindlers? Was John Dee an accomplish of Edward Kelley? was John Dee a victim of Edward Kelley? Or was Edward Kelley indeed the clairvoyant alchemist he claimed to be?

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner Stanley Krippner and P.M.H. Atwater. I will be doing an interview with Catherine Wikholm about her book the Buddha Pill very soon so be sure to sign up and with Justina Lasley about her book Wake Up to Your Dreams: Transform Your Relationships, Career, and Health While You Sleep!

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Mindfunda 100, a look behind the scenes

Mindfunda’s #100 !!

Today I celebrate the #100th blog post of Mindfunda.
The number 100 is a special number. All ratios can be brought back to 100 using a percentage. 100 was considered to be the desired age for a human being in the bible. 100 represents eternity. (Don’t worry, I don’t plan on writing for Mindfunda that long).

Behind the scenes of Mindfunda the blog

Mindfunda started in February with a first blog post about Valentines day and a scientific method of making somebody fall in love with you. That was what I want for Mindfunda: fun articles with a different edge. To make you think. To make you stop. To make you wonder. To encourage you to reconsider your own beliefs. I usually want some scientific data to back up my story. That means research. And research. And research. Jotting things down on paper, usually my notes look like this:

I call Mindfunda the walking website. Because after I have done all this work I usually walk. Nothing can bring notes and thoughts more into perspective then a walk, while thinking about what I want to say. I think about how I am going to say it, why I am going to say it and why my readers would want to read it. I think my Ray Kurzweil post is one of my favorites. I put so much effort in researching Kurzweil (I really got to like him), his life, his determination, his brilliant mind that I had to contemplate how to convince you of his brilliance without coming across as a love-sick puppy.

My post about a dream that alerted the dreamer to a heart condition is one of the most visited posts, according to statistics. We live in a time that many people suffer from heart conditions.

Behind the scenes of Mindfunda YouTube

After two months of blogging I wanted to publish an interview. Being a book addict I wanted to let writers tell about their books. I wanted people to engage with them, like them, see them, hear about their struggles, their solutions, their happiness but also about their failures. Because failing is not a problem. Failing is a side road to success. I created a YouTube channel for Mindfunda.

One of the books that had intrigued me the most was Dream of the Cosmos written by Jungian author Anne Baring.

behind the scenes
Anne Baring

In April 2015 I taped the first Skype interview with non other than Anne Baring. She, in my eyes, is a star. Having read her “Mythology of the Goddess” I was severely impressed with the intellectual depth of this lady. She has read so many old books about Kabbalah, about Sacred Geometry, she traveled the world: she is like an intellectual rock star to me. After emailing her she agreed to an interview on Skype. I was jumping tables, filled with joy. Unfortunately she had to cancel the interview. Twice. That is not good for your self-confidence. At an earlier age in my life, when I was about eight year old I really wanted to be a journalist. And interviewing people comes close. So having interviews cancelled for any reason is not good for your self-esteem. And she mailed me she did not like my questions. So I decided to jump in at the deep end and skip the questions but to ask her to tell about subjects. She agreed to that (and now you know the reason why I do not talk very much in that interview). But she was indeed my intellectual superstar. She gave such an inspiring talk that I was glowing with enthusiasm after I hang up the phone on Skype.

I usually give the authors my questions at least a week before the interview, so they can prepare. I like to start with a personal question about a dream, or a life changing experience. Most viewers don’t look long at interviews so you have to catch them early on to capture them. So that personal question, where the interviewees show a vulnerable, likable side of him or herself is very important.
When the introduction is done, my job as interviewer gets a bit harder. I have to listen, I have to scan the answers to see if the people watching have gotten an answer, and I have to prepare the next question in my mind. I can tell you that is a lot of work. I am not very good at multitasking…

The interview that surprised me the most was that with Ralph Metzner. He was in a good mood during our Skype conversation. We had a time mix up being 10 hours apart, I called him too late or he called me too early. But he gave an in-depth analysis of Western culture. He talked about Russia, with its Bear totem animal. He talked about ancestry, about Odin. And when I closed the interview after 50 minutes he said surprised: “Are we done already?”

Robert Waggoner was a delight to interview. I just admit to you that I am no good at multitasking and Robert thought along with me. He recommended research, he gave reading tips, he summarized.
I called him in his early morning and he was sharp. He is an early bird.
I did not have my headphone working while I did the interview with him, that is the reason I edited myself out of the video. And besides, Robert is far more interesting when it comes to lucid dreaming. I only have about 3-5 lucid dreams a month so I do not consider myself to be an expert on the subject.

I was so glad when I saw one of my friends on Facebook was a friend of Connie Kaplan. Her ‘Woman’s book of Dreams’ influenced me very much. We could have talked for hours. But keeping my interviews around 50 minutes is my aim. Preferably shorter, twenty minutes would be my favorite length. Experts say an ideal interview just lasts about three minutes. Connie talked with ease and felt really comfortable. She displays so much joy and wisdom in her film that you have got to fall in love with her.

I was really afraid that Jean Raffa would be far too busy to be interviewed by me. I heard such good things about her books especially ‘Dream theatres of the Soul’ and the ‘Healing the Sacred Divide’. But she was delightful, down to earth, but jet very spiritual. But she was happy to do the interview, even at a time when she was occupied with her keynote speech for the International Association for the Study of Dreams (IASD) annual conference where she was invited to be the keynote speaker.
I usually engage in a talk before I do the interview (I edit this part out) and we discovered we had mutual Facebook friends and that we both had this longing for a spiritual depth that we could not fulfill using the traditional spiritual methods. So I ended up telling her everything about my “Reading the Red Book project” something I am working on now. I use the Red Book as a tool to incubate dreams to guide my own inner experience of religion.

The last interview I uploaded (I have not uploaded my interview with PMH Atwater yet) is that of Stanley Krippner. Stanley is a highly intelligent man who always impresses me with his knowledge of books and research. There is no subject to be discussed with him, or he can give you a good book written about it, or some excellent research for you to read. The only thing he is not able to give you is the ISBN number of the book. The interview went very well even though he was very hungry (It was his one-o-clock that I interviewed him). During this interview he showed a magnificent shamanic drum he once got, I was very impressed by it.

Now I am busy editing PMH Atwater’s interview and preparing questions for Catherine Wikholm who is one of the authors of the Buddha pill.
PMH Atwater is a writer and dyslexic, a combination that is very impressive. During our interview she was very direct, very scientific and very down to earth. The thing I had to get used to is that she likes to be called PMH. She considers that to be her first name. It was easy to get used too, because I became quite charmed with her energy. She has been researching near death experiences for a long time. Like Jean Raffa, she is has re-defined her personal religion. Now she is searching for people who had a near death experience at an early age and she does an appeal to you to connect with her and tell her your story if indeed you had one at an early age.

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner and Stanley Krippner. I will be doing an interview with Catherine Wikholm about her book the Buddha Pill very soon so be sure to sign up!

Twitter: @susannevandoorn

3 ways of being creative like van Gogh

Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)
Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)

Mindfunda was invited by Cultura to give a presentation about dreams and art. Cultura is the municipal art gallery and theatre in the Dutch town of Ede.

To remember the death of one of the most famous artists in the Netherlands, Vincent van Gogh, who died Juli 29th, 125 years ago. All over Europe, art galleries are organizing expositions around this memorial so Mindfunda was honored to be given an opportunity to shine a light on how dreams are a gateway into creativity.
Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)
Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)


Van Gogh wrote in a letter to his brother Theo: “The sight of the stars makes me dream”. It is commonly accepted that dreams are creative so the fact that van Gogh got his inspiration by looking at the pictures of his dreams makes common sense. But in 2009 there was scientific proof (Mednick et al) that dreaming induces creativity.  In a research people had to do a creative test: they had to couple three words with a fourth that matched. For instance: the words heart, sixteen and cookie had to be matched with the word sweet. In the research only the group that had enjoyed REM sleep improved their scores on the creativity test.

Pianist, writer and painter David Dubal talks about how he uses his dreams as inspiration. He uses dreams to solve problems and to get inspiration. He even had an exhibition from paintings that had been inspired by dreams. In this film you can hear him talk about the importance of dreams for creativity.

Vincent van Gogh
photo from

There is one very important thing David Dubal says in the YouTube film. One thing that defines creativity. Sitting in the subway, I break the unwritten rules by looking at people”. Breaking the rules. Looking at things from a whole different perspective. Let’ s explore the life of Vincent van Gogh to see how many times he broke the rules….

  • He started working for the art company of his uncle. His uncle washed his hands of Vincent after seven years. van Gogh did get the chance to visit London and Paris (this is why his brother Theo was able to live in Paris: he kept on working for this uncle).
  • van Gogh worked in a bookstore to earn money for the government examination for a study Theology. Like his father he wanted to become a preacher. He stopped because he was not able to pass for Latin.
  • He went to Missionary school were he was sent to Borinage. This is one of the poorest areas in Belgium. He got his inspiration for his famous painting The potato eaters. He used to cry himself to sleep each night because he could not bear the suffering he was surrounded with.
  • van Gogh went to art school in Antwerp, convinced that he was meant to be a painter. Unfortunately he was ridiculed by his professors. Humiliated, he dropped out of school.
  • He started painting on the streets of Antwerp, selling his sketches to the tourists. Living a life of poverty, bad health and debts he fled to Parish.
  • The “famous” ear incident happened when Gauguin and van Gogh lived together. Van Gogh cut off a part of his own ear. A very interesting vision is given by researchers Hans Kaufmann and Rita Wildegans. They wrote a book: Van Gogh’s Ear: Paul Gauguin and the Pact of Silence. After analysing the letters of van Gogh they assume that Gauguin got a sword and injured van Gogh. Van Gogh agreed to keep this a secret so Gauguin was kept out of jail.
  • Vincent van Gogh had himself admitted to the mental hospital Saint-Paul Asylum, in Saint-Rémy

Well, we can all agree that Vincent van Gogh broke a lot of rules. His creativity was key in finding new ways to explore when things fell apart.
In one of his letters to his brother Theo he wrote: I dream my paintings, and then I paint my dreams”. Given that research has indicated that REM sleep enhances creativity, let’s interpret Van Gogh’s Starry night as a dream also read my Mindfunda about Starry night.

strarry night - van gogh
starry night – van gogh

Since the seventies of last century we are used to see a dream as a representation of one’s own mind. It is perfectly reasonable how that assumption came into being. A new generation wanted to get rid of the bearded professors telling people what their dreams meant. They successfully seized power: a dream is about you and only you. I disagree with that because I think human beings are social people who are custom-made to live in tribes. So dreaming about another tribe member is natural (also see my experiment in mutual dreaming described in my e-book). But if this painting is a dream of van Gogh, what does it tell us about van Gogh?

Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)
Mndfunda about van Gogh @ Cultura Ede (NL)

What is the first thing that stands out in this picture? The Nebula that seems to divide the painting in two. If you look at your dream, first look at its day residue so you are able to explore pure symbolic things more in depth. Things you do during the day get into your dreams.
Looking at this painting, the brilliant piece of Albert Boime gives a hand at distinguishing the real facts from the symbolism in the painting. Albert Boime carefully esearched the sky and found out it was an almost accurate representation of the night sky in Saint-Rémy. Accept for two things. Two things we can interpret symbolically. One is the spiral nebula that divides the painting in two parts. Vincent had not seen this in 1889. In 1880 this picture, taken by Henry Draper of the Orion Nebula was published and caused quite a sensation. Astronomers at that time assumed that a star was born in the middle of the nebula.

van Gogh
Henry Drape Orion nebula
source Wikepedia

A star being born…. It is not a surprise that Vincent van Gogh got his first exposition nine months after this painting. The time it takes for the star being born to mature. And one month later he got his second exposition in Antwerp. That is where he sold the only painting he ever was going to sell while he was alive.

But there has got to be a better way to use the creativity in your dreams. We don’t want to break the rules the way van Gogh did. And we don’t need to. Salvador Dali was very succesful while alive using his dreams in a completely different way.  Let me tell you how he did it.

Dali’s method involved a chair that was not too hard, but not too comfortable either. (It had to be a Spanish chair, off course). A plate, a key, and olive oil. Dali rubbed his wrists with olive oil. He held a large key in his left hand, between his thumb and his forefinger. He relaxed, closed his eyes and when the key hit the plate he was awake. Using this method he made the most extraordinary paintings.


Vincent van Gogh
Dream caused by the flight of a bee


Once a month he took out a whole afternoon to get inspired by dreams and he had a special menu. He ate 3 dozen sea urchins that had to be selected two days before the moon was full. He drank a glass of young white wine, and did not leave his room untill he had an inspiring dream.

You can see the chair he used for his daily dream routine in Alfred Hitchcock’s Spellbound starring Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck. In this film he got the opportunity to demonstrate how important dreams can be as a tool for creative problem solution.

There is yet a third way to use dreams to enhance creativity. Where van Gogh used ways to explore other options and Salvador Dali used dreams as a way to guide him through his career path, artist Brenda Ferrimani uses dreams in a third way. She dives into the confrontation van Gogh walked away from. She used dreams to dive right into the conflict (Read a Mindfunda blog by Brenda Ferrimani here).

I compiled all the above information in a vivid Prezi to show the audience the coherence of it all in an attractive way. The organization had a nice touch to their thank-you-bouquet:  Sunflowers off course, like van Gogh!

Sunflowers, like van gogh

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Twitter: @susannevandoorn

Sense8: a mythology of connection and magic

Sense8 is the name of a new Netflix series that started June 2015. Written by the Wachowskis (yes the writers of the Matrix). It is a story about eight people living all around the world who can connect using telepathy. Mindfunda explores the mythological constructs of the series and how they weave into current society.


Sense8: the main characters

There are eight characters in Sense8, living across the world. If you watch closely you see there is a male and a female version of each character. Here is a trailer that Netflix made that introduces the characters.

Carpeus: a very warm and caring man who associates himself with his big hero Jean-Claude van Damme.
Kala: the female counterpart of Carpeus. She is very mild, very religious. She is also a pharmacist and represents the alchemical notion of the series.

Sun: the female kick ass. She gets into prison for a crime her brother has committed because she once promised her mother to take care of him.
Wolf: the male fighter. He commits crimes but stays out of prison. He falls madly in love with the peaceful Kala.

Lito: a homosexual male actor living with a man.
Nomi: a transgender woman, living with a woman.

Riley: a female DJ who travels the world. She once lost her child and husband.
Will: a police officer who is used to playing by the rules. He falls madly in love with Riley.

If you want to use Jungian psychology you might say that the first pair: Carpeus and Kala represent the water element. They are connected with their feelings. More importantly both of them have a reasonably good relationship with their own mother. Carpeus’ motive for plunging into a different way of live was his urge to care for his mother who suffers from Aids.

Sun and Wolf represent the fire element. Sun seems to repress her emotions, but she has the fire to fight for what she believes in. Suns’ relationship with her mother is a rather unbalanced one. Her mother has asked her before she died to sacrifice her own life for the happiness of the males around her. No wonder Sun developed her animus qualities whith such endeavor.
Wolfs’ fire gets him alive out of the most dangerous situations. Like Sun he is a fighter. Like Sun, Wolf is not affraid of confrontations. But he is the first person of the eight hero’s who has a fathership issue: he despises his father.

Lito and Nomi represent the air element. Lito knows how to pretent to survive, how to drive on the wings and be taken were the situation wants him to be. Nomi  has the brains to hack computers. She also has a mother issue: her mother has never accepted her wish to change gender.

Riley and Will are the last two: they represent the earth element. Riley has lost her mother (it begins to sound familiar doesn’t it? In the next paragraph I will explain how eight also refers to the spider, an ancient symbol of the Great Mother). and her father is very important to her.
Will also has a good relationship with his father, they are both cops. The earthly Will follows the rules but needs to bend them ever more. Because of his need to fix things he falls in love with the lovely Riley who seems to be in trouble all of the time.

Sense8: number 8 as a symbol

There are eight main characters in Sense8. The number eight is the atom number of oxygen. Oxygen is an essential part in the process of getting energy in your body. Energy you need to make changes. All of the main characters are in a dead-end situation in their life and need some energy. As Stanley Krippner and David Feinstein wrote in their classic book Personal mythology: “When your experiences and your myths do not correspond, there are two basic possibilities: alter your perception or change your myth”.

A spider has eight legs. The spider is an ancient symbol of the mother Goddess. The Navajo and Hopi Indian tribes believe the world was created by a spider. This mythological mother motive is represented by the character Angel. Angel gives birth to all eight of the sensates in the opening scene.

Sense8: a current mythology

In our society science is the new religion. But science seems to kill off our need for magic. Our need for connection. The need for connection in our society has grown. After industrialisation, most of us live in a large community, but have little close friends. This innate sense of connection is taken to a new heroic level in Sense8. The main characters save each others lives multiple times. You see Sun saving the live of Carpeus in a fight of live and death, you see Wolf saving Lito and vise versa.

Science is represented by the company BPO: Biologic Preservation Organization. The main villain of the series is Dr. Metzger. If he looks one of the hero’s in the eyes, he will know their minds.  His aim is to destruct free will. He wants to manipulate the eight sensates. Often, in Sense8 – like in real life- there is no telling who is on the “right” side and who is wrong. Because Dr. Metzger also has a counter part. The lover of the mother of the sensates: Jonas. He is able to connect with each of the characters in Sense8 to give them guidance. But is it for the better or is it for the worse? This issue of trust is very significant. We live in a society were science has taught us to question everything. It is a big responsibility. It increases our longing to be surrounded by a tribe of people we can trust.

Finaly the ease with which Sense8 addresses homosexuality and introduces a transgender as a main character is worth a big round of applause. Finally in June 2015 marriage between gay people was legalized in the United States. Sense8 is really a mirror of the time we live in.

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner and Stanley Krippner. I will be uploading an interview with P.H Awater about near death experiences very soon so be sure to sign up!


twitter: @susannevandoorn

Starry night, a painting as a dream

‘Starry Night’ from Vincent van Gogh. He painted it in 1889, before he got into a major depression. A famous painting.  This Mindfunda looks at ‘Starry Night’ as if it was a dream.

"The sight of the stars makes me dream". Vincent van Gogh wrote this to his brother Theo. And: "I dream of a painting and then I paint my dream".

Mindfunda is invited to Cultura Galerie in the Netherlands to talk about dreams and art. The painting Starry Night of Vincent van Gogh serves as a starting point for artists to make their own interpretation of the painting in the specific style of Vincent van Gogh. Mindfunda invites you to look at the painting as if it depicts a dream of Vincent van Gogh. Like Vincent once wrote to his brother Theo: I dream of a painting, and then I paint my dream”. If Starry Night is a dream, what does that dream tell us about Vincent van Gogh?

Starry night Vincent van Gogh
Starry night Vincent van Gogh, museum of modern art

If you look at the painting you see twelve bright stars in the heavenly sky. The number twelve has a particular significance in human history. Robert Gongloff explains in his book Dream Exploration: “We find twelve in all walks of life, from religion and politics to measurement and mathematics”. He goes on to give examples: twelve arts and sciences are considered essential to spiritual growth by the Rosicrucians, twelve followers of Jesus, Twelve followers of Odin. The list goes on. Twelve is a very religious number and Vincent painted Starry Night in a very religious period of his life. Body, soul mind and spirit are united in the number twelve. It represented the inner peace Vincent was longing for.

Seven stars and the moon are above the first wave. The moon is in its last quarter, the need to let go and make way for a new moon.  The number eight symbolizes things that lay beyond nature. It was a very spiritual time for Vincent. He was searching for meaning, searching for a style, for a way to support himself.

If you look at the colors used you see the color yellow. the Dutch writer Ada de Boer wrote a book “Kleuren in dromen” about the meaning of color in dreams. She tells about the bad reputation the color yellow used to have. “Yellow is seen as the color of Satan and Judas. Outcasts were obliged to wear yellow to be recognized by ordinary citizens”. But luckily, dreaming of yellow can be an encouragement to show yourself more.

The color blue that is very dominant in the painting. Dark blue in dreams is associated with rules, uniforms. Often according to Ada de Boer signifies dark blue an alternative that can not be reached by the dreamer. If you look at Starry Night you can see that dark blue is mixed with black. A symbol of the upcoming depression of Vincent van Gogh.
But there is also light blue in the picture: the church roof is light blue, like religion offers Vincent an escape out of his worldly struggle, out of his feelings of not being appreciated for his talents.

The cypress tree that is quite dominant in the painting is known as the mournful tree. Sacred to the spiritual watchers of other realms. The tree has the shape of an exclamation mark towards the sky. Its color is a nearly black-ish green. In dreams, green is a very positive color. Ada de Boer writes: “Green is the life bringing force, when there is no green left in our dream, our powers of living stop flowing”. And indeed, unfortunately Vincent took his own life almost a year after he painted Starry night.

Here is the invitation to the presentation (in Dutch):

Kunstfestival de Smaak van Van Gogh Ede juli  2015 Lezing over dromen en sterren.

Psychologe en droomdeskundige Susanne van Doorn geeft op zaterdag 11 juli om 15.00 uur in Cultura een lezing over dromen. Robert de Jong geeft vervolgens een lezing over sterren. Deze lezingen zijn in het kader van de expositie ’De aanblik van de sterren laat me dromen’ naar een uitspraak van Vincent van Gogh in één van zijn brieven aan zijn broer Theo.

Geïnspireerd door dit citaat toont Cultura Galerie de sterren van het witte doek zoals Marilyn Monroe. De sterren van het Facebook project Selfie & van Gogh. Hedendaagse kunstenaars tonen in licht objecten, olieverfschilderijen en etsen hun aanblik van de sterren.

Susanne van Doorn gaat in haar lezing in op de betekenis van dromen. Niet alleen de betekenis van dromen voor Vincent van Gogh maar ook voor andere kunstenaars zoals Salvatore Dali. Susanne van Doorn studeerde psychologie in Tilburg en volgde daarna de academie van het Jungiaanse Instituut in Nijmegen. Robert de Jong van de sterrenvereniging Astra Alteria vertelt u over de sterren die we boven ons hoofd zien.

Een interessant uur waarbij u van harte welkom bent.

Lezing De aanblik van de sterren laat me dromen

zaterdag 11 juli 15.00 – 16.00 uur Cultura
Molenstraat 45 6711AW Ede Toegang gratis

Dalai Lama dreams: here is looking at you kid!

Today Mindfunda's guest is blogger Patti Allen. In this blog she shares with Mindfunda she talks about how people in dreams reflect aspects of your own personality. I know Patti Allen as a gifted dreamer, a good writer who combines inner wisdom with straightforward actions. That always gives her that touch of extra magic when it comes to dreams and spirituality.

Have you ever had a dream about a famous person and wondered what this could mean for you? Is the dream a precognition for a future event or is there another way to work with these dreams? Patti Allen had a series of dreams about his holiness the Dalai Lama and discovered 4 ways of tuning in to your inner dream investigator. The Dalai Lama goes Casablanca style: here is looking at you kid…

“In 2002 through to the present, I started dreaming about the Dalai Lama. It wasn’t a stellar number of dreams—only five—and none of them were precognitive nor giving me information about my relationship with His Holiness or anyone like him, yet they piqued my curiosity and inspired me to dig deeper into the role of people in our dreams. I’ve discovered that I have an inner Dream Investigator who loves to solve mysteries and these characters are most often showing me parts of my Self that it’s time to get to know, own and integrate into my conscious awareness.


dalai lama
Dalai Lama


We are often surrounded In dreams, as in waking life, by the people we know but also by strangers. Family, friends and co-workers, as well as generic “somebodies”, movie stars and other famous characters we don’t know. Over time, our dreams may seem like we are dealing with a cast of thousands in a Cecil B. DeMille extravaganza! But the fact is, we are the producer, director, writer and actor in our dreams. If you are a dreamer who is consciously evolving and using dreams as a tool towards this end, then you may have wondered, “Who are these people and what are they doing in my dream?”

This is not a simple question. It helps to determine if the dream and the characters are giving you information about a relationship or situation in waking life or if the dream is largely symbolic and the people in your dream are showing you aspects of your Self. Often it is both/and, not either/or, as every dream can have multiple layers of meaning for the dreamer. In some cases, the dream can be precognitive. You may find yourself in waking life face to face with the people in your dream in the same way the dream actually unfolded!

In the first dream about the Dalai Lama is  entitled “The Dalai Lama Visits”:

“The Dalai Lama is coming over. He arrives with his entourage and chooses to hold court in my office. I am pleased and busy attending to the entourage’s needs. I was fussing with the blinds so the glare from the sun wouldn’t be too bright and His Holiness won’t be uncomfortable. His people think it is too dark; they want it lighter. He sits on the couch and at one point calls me over. I think he is calling someone else standing behind me. (I was nervous, reacting with a “Who? Me?” type of response.) His people offer me ghee that was intricately shaped into the shapes of animals. I say it looks different here (in our country). Some biker gang- type neighbours are making a lot of noise and I go next door to yell at them. “Don’t you know we’ve got a holy man here?

In this dream, I found myself grappling with the layers of symbolism with the character of the Dalai Lama. What is the holy man or the leader in me?  How much “light” or enlightenment is just right? Do I adjust the blinds or would I rather stay in the dark? Who are the “biker or gang-types” in me? What is my need to keep them quiet telling me? What is the offering in my life or what am I being offered? In an intuitive or precognitive possibility, at the time of the dream I had no idea that there really is a butter and flour offering in the Tibetan tradition called “Torma”, which are “figures or shapes, some conical, made mostly of flour and butter used in tantric rituals or as offerings in Tibetan Buddhism.” -Wikipedia] And finally, and importantly, why am I always serving or attending to the needs of others?

In other Dalai Lama dreams, H.H. is wearing jeans and smoking after blessing my home, being asked questions about when he goes to the bathroom and when he prays, what souvenir should I buy or whether I can serve pork to his wife!

So with these mysterious characters in our dreams, what is the best way to approach them? Wearing my best “Dream Investigator” Fedora, I first look for clues in this way (with apologies to Casablanca fans!). The Dalai Lama goes Casablanca style. Four questions to sharpen your inner detective tools.

Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama goes Casablanca #1

Round Up The Usual Suspects (associations): Look at the characters in your dream by thinking of 3-5 adjectives to describe them. Don’t try to clean up your descriptions to be politically correct. I call your associations “the usual suspects” because it is your typical thoughts, associations and assumptions, whether true or correct, that we want to know. What first comes to mind when you think or describe that person? I learned a lot over the years and I love Gayle Delaney’s “Tell it to an alien” technique as a simple, powerful and direct way to come up with these descriptions. (Note: there are other similar techniques that are drawn from various types of psychotherapy schools, but framing it in this way Delaney cuts to the chase!)

Dalai Lama goes Casablanca #2

Play it, Sam: When you can’t quite get a handle on any associations in a way that resonates for you, imagine you are the person in question in your dream, and speak from their perspective. Tell us about yourself. “I am…” Playing the part of the characters in your dream will draw out your own associations. Soon you’ll be humming As Time Goes By.

Dalai Lama goes Casablanca #3

Here’s Looking at You Kid: Is the character telling you about a relationship or situation in your life or is the dream about a part of you? Take all the time you need to explore the usual suspects and situations in your life, and let your emotions guide the way. Sometimes, we too quickly rush to make associations and if nothing or no one in our life is a perfect match, we swiftly discard the connections. But taking the time to look with our emotions will often have us taking a second look. As you explore your associations, watch for yours body sensation as clues. You may have a physical or energetic reaction to the character and your associations that will tell you when you find your dream treasure, that juicy “aha” moment. You may know “in your gut” what the people in your dream represent.

Dalai Lama goes Casablanca #4

Louie, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship: Once the connection is made between your life and your dream people, befriending them is a great way to begin to integrate their messages. Treat them as honoured visitors and dialogue with them. Invite their energy or point of view into your life. Begin to own their place and value in your conscious awareness. In Casablanca, Rick and Louise start out as enemies…or at best “frenemies” and by the end of the movie, they were going off together to fight in the Resistance. When it comes to dream messages, resistance will often be met with more dreams, both recurring dreams and nightmares, until we pay attention. These dreams and the characters in them can become beautiful friends, when we take the time to get to know these diverse aspects of Self”.

Dalai Lama: here is looking at you kid!


dalai lama
Patti Allen

Patti Allen has a rich background in the healing arts, education, and public speaking on the topic of dreams and has been facilitating dream groups for 18 years. As a Dream Teacher, Blogger at, Mentor and Coach, Patti helps people use their dreams to access their inner wisdom, creativity and problem-solving abilities. You can contact her by writing to:

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Please sign up for my YouTube channel to enjoy all the beautiful Mindfunda interviews with inspiring people. People like Jean Benedict Raffa, Anne Baring, Connie Kaplan, Ralph Metzner and Stanley Krippner. I will be uploading an interview with P.H Awater about near desth experiences very soon so be sure to sign up!


twitter: @susannevandoorn

Summer solstice: when the sun does not seem to move

summer solstice

Summer Solstice. The day in the year that the sun seems to hang still in the air. Solstice originates from the Latin word Solstitium: sol = sun and stitium is to stand still.

Summer solstice

It has been celebrated ever since agriculture came into fashion, about 10,000 years ago. We all know that solstice was celebrated in places like Stonehenge. But what does it mean for dreams and dreaming? Do you remember the Mindfunda on Earth day? Here you can read it. Solar flames trigger the earth magnetic field. The earth magnetic field influences dreams and dream content. Stanley Krippner, professor of psychology at Saybrook University (see an interview with him here) found out that during the times of high solar flames the earth magnetic field responds and dream content changes. In his extrasensory perception experiments he found out that dreams that where telepathic often occurred on days with a low magnetic activity.

Summer solstice: research

Other research has been conducted by Russian researcher Shumilov. He looked at activity in the Earth’s geomagnetic field from 1948 to 1997 and found that it grouped into three seasonal peaks every year: one from March to May, another in July and the last in October. You can read more about this research here.

Some people can be very sensitive to the earth’s magnetic field. According to a man calling himself Harry Magnet you are more sensitive if you have a psychiatric disorder. That is a little troublesome, but I can understand his reasoning. Just like a magnet has poles, Harry assumes people also have magnetic poles that can be pulled by disturbances in the earth’s magnetic field. This is what Harry has to say about the summer solstice: “The general pattern was that my symptoms would get progressively worse for a month or two before the solstice (both winter and summer), then get better after the solstice. If your depression, mania, anxiety, or any other symptom changes with the seasons, this can be a sign of geomagnetic field sensitivity”.

Summer solstice: this year

At this years summer solstice (2015) the activity of the sun will be low, the highest activity are moderate flares. You can find out all about the strength of solar flames using this link here. So this solstice is good for telepathic dreaming. For engaging in your own mutual dreaming experiment (more info see here).

Enjoy your summer solstice. Honor the light and the dark in your life. they need each other. So much of our time is waisted trying to be perfect. Be like the sun these days: hang still in the air. observe, be nurturing.

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Spiritual retreats for this summer

The summer is getting near. This is the month of June and on June 21 there will be the solstice. Time to take it slow and to retreat. Time to travel inwards preferably to a place that brings out the best in you. There are spiritual places where the earth seems to have an effect on your inner well-being. Here is Mindfunda’s list of 5 spiritual retreats.

spiritual retreats

Spiritual retreats #1: Sedona

Sedona is a place that combines spiritual energies. Rumor has it that it resonates in Kundalini energy. Kundalini energy resonates in a physical body from the lower chakra upwards to the crown of the head. That experience is considered to be very enlightening.

spiritual retreats
Secret Sedona

In Sedona the earth is said to experience this same phenomena.  Your dreams will take on a new level of awareness and your physical well-being will flourish.

Spiritual retreats #2: Lourdes

Lourdes in the French Pyrenees has a very moving history. Way back in 1856 a small girl named Bernadette saw a young lady dressed in white with a blue ribbon. Mother Mary had appeared and started to perform miracles.

spiritual retreats
Lourdes travel guide

The lady appears several time to Bernadette. Miracles began to occur, people were healed. This beautiful remote town high in the mountains will charm you. Even though it has become highly commercial, the nature is beautiful and water has never tasted so good anywhere in the world.

Spiritual retreats #3: Delphi

spiritual retreats

The oracle of Delphi is world-famous. The oracle powers of  Pythia, who sat on a tripod inhaling gases that blew her mind. This is the place of worship for the ancient mother goddess. It is high on my list of places to visit. The oracle’s declarations could be mystical, like the one given to the Celts: “Care for these things fall on me”, but in hindsight they always made sense. The oracle had refered to several earth quakes that where about to happen.

 Spiritual retreats #4: Joshua Tree national monument

In the Mojave desert home for the Mohave people who lived alongside the river Yuman. Dreams where called su’mach, and seen as a gateway to creativity and knowledge.

spiritual dream retreats
Hidden Joshua tree

What we call now “Big Dreams” were seen as great tellings and where a guide to the tribe. Some people where better than others in conceiving these dreams and where selected. after a time of initiation they dreamed for the well-being of the whole tribe.

 Spiritual retreats #5: Australia

Australia is one of the most spiritual countries to travel. Dreamtime was considered the explanation of ultimate human reality. The tribes lived with the land. they listened to the rhythms of the land and saw them reflected in their own body.

spiritual retreats
Blue mountains

The blue mountains are considered a very spiritual place in Australia. The Gundungurra tribe thought it was the result of a battle the Mirigan and Garangatch, half-fish, half reptile.

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Psychology professor Stanley Krippner about dreams myths and visions

Stanley Krippner

Mindfunda had the honor of interviewing Stanley Krippner, professor in psychology on Saybrook University about his life. You can watch it on my YouTube channel. Don’t forget to sign up because I will be uploading lots of interesting interviews.

Stanley Krippner is a featured speaker on the conference of the International Study for the Association of dreams (IASD) where he will be talking about his work on ptsd – post traumatic stress disorder -. *)

It was a dream of mine that triggered me to sent him an invitation for an interview. I dreamed that I was performing a ritual with my hands. I had to move my hands in synch with Stanley Krippner in my dream. I knew exactly what to do, intuitively and I woke up very happy. With a new sense of trusting my inner self.

Stanley Krippner A life of dreams, myths and visions

If you purchase this book using this link, you will support the good work of Mindfunda

In this book Stanley Krippner, a life of dreams myths &  visions, a picture is painted of a psychology professor who combines a very analytical skill with tact and diplomacy. A rare combination. A lot of well-known scholars contributed a chapter to this book: Allan Leslie Combs, Jurgen Werner. Michael Winkerman, Charles Laughlin, Jean Millay & Suzanne Engelman, Deidre Barret, Daniel Deslaudiers, Faribah Bogzahran, David Feinstein and Deidre Barrett to name a few. This book is filled with wisdom.

Stanley Krippner has explored the field of psychology in all possible realms. He has a special interest in dreams. He has kept a dream journal from a relative young age. His article about how the magnetism of the earth influences dream content is just one of the ways he shows his love for the earth. Growing up in a farmer’s family he was involved in ecological agriculture at an early age. Slug the Bug! was his first ecological product that he sold himself at the local market. He always is very aware of his connection to the earth. His advice to students of psychology is: to stay grounded


This connection to the earth must get nurtured by a believe in magic. In the Mindfunda interview Stanley Krippner talks about how his good friend Rolling Thunder surprised him with some magic. One day a bird was brought to Rolling Thunder, a Cherokee medicine man. His wing was broken. Rolling thunder just took the bird in his hands and it flew away, healed.

Rolling thunder

If you buy this book using this link you will support the good work of Mindfunda 

In the Mindfunda interview you will hear Stanley Krippner talking about that event. The picture on the cover of the book was taken shortly after.


The interview with Stanley Krippner made perfectly clear that psychology needs grounded people who base their conclusions on observable facts. But that only observable facts are not enough. You have to be open-minded for the magic to do its work. Otherwise the earthly facts would be too dry to consume.

His knowledge about magic (he used to study and perform magic tricks) came into good use when he investigated several paranormal events. A haunted house got analyzed by Stanley who deducted that every time something happened the grandson of the couple that lived in this haunted house was present. It turned out that the grandson wanted a place of his own and creating a story about the house being haunted made people crazy enough to experience weird things.
Magic also played a role when he conducted his experiments with Montague Ullman and Alan Vaughan concerning dream telepathy. The laboratory where he investigated dreaming persons using electrodes to measure their brainwaves was checked by magicians. It are those kind of details that make this man stand out.

I know Stanley Krippner not only from the books he has written but also because I invited him to perform a workshop Personal Mythology in the Netherlands. In the Mindfunda interview Stanley says that finding out your Personal mythology is important. Getting to know yourself better is vital for liking yourself. Liking yourself creates inner peace. inner peace creates the ability to give back to the world. If you want to join the Facebook group Personal Mythology I initiated click here. In this group we talk about mythology, mythological themes that penetrate our lives, we talk about dreams and how we have evolved from old personal mythologies into new mythologies.

There is one thing I have not mentioned yet. Shamanism. Deidre Barrett, in her contribution to the book “Every Tribe’s Wise man” talks about how a supervisee, Amaro Laria found shamans in remote places who all asked him once they heard he was from America: “Do you know Stanley Krippner?”

Stanley talks in the Mindfunda interview about how he used Carlos Casteneda’s hand method to aquire the art of lucid dreaming (for more info about lucid dreaming see my interview with Robert Waggoner).
Like Ralph Metzner he researched and experienced natural means of expanding consciousness and has written several articles about it.

Stanley Krippner gives psychology a new two-sided face. On the one hand he is about facts: analyzing data, reading the latest research. On the other hand he always keeps an eye open for magic. “The one thing I wish that students would do is gather facts about precognitive dreams” he stated in one of the interviews I saw while preparing my Mindfunda interview. Facts, sprinkled with a little touch of magic.

Post-traumatic stress disorder

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Mandorla, a way to see the other side of the coin

"The message is unmistakable
our own healing proceeds from that overlap
of what we call good and evil, light and dark. It is not that 
the light element alone does the healing, the place where 
light and dark begin to touch is where miracles arise.
This middle place is the mandorla"
Robert A. Johnson
Jean Raffa

I had the pleasure of interviewing author Jean Benedict Raffa about her book “Healing the sacred Divide”. You can watch it on the Mindfunda YouTube-channel. Jean is a keynote speaker at the annual conference of the International Association of Dreams (IASD). Healing the sacred divide got the Wilbur Award,  recognizing excellence in the communication of religious issues.

Jean and I talked about how in this day and age we seem to be addicted to war. Inner disagreements and outer arguments where we seek and emphasize the differences between ourselves and “the other”.

In a previous interview I had with Ralph Metzner, I discussed how Europe was taken over by warrior tribes and how this inheritance changed mythology. Jean Raffa describes how our religion is based on those old warrior mythologies. Masculine, with a God image outside of us. Her book Healing the sacred divide is divided in two parts, just like a mandorla.

Healing the sacred divide

If you purchase the book using this link, you will support the good work of Mindfunda

Mandorla consciousness #1

The first part tells about the eight mistakes in our current concept of God. This part analysis how culture has emphasized one part of the continuum: creating a masculine God, that is outside of us and that really lacks a female touch. With female I mean the qualities our culture has marked feminine like empathy, intuition, acting based on an inner knowing instead of facts. Qualities that both male and female posses and express. It is a clear statement how we need both sides: we need to combine facts with intuitive insights.

Mandorla consciousness #2

The second part tells about the nine wisdom gifts of integrating the divided God image. She builds up the second mandala of consciousness fout of nine stones of wisdom. A nine folded lapis lazuli. Holistic consciousness, transforming light, acceptance of the shadow, emotional integrity, partnership, balance, sovereignty, meaning and the mandorla consciousness.

Mandorla consciousness #3

In the interview Jean Raffa shares a dream about her shadow that she has never shared before. It is a clear example of how valuable working with dreams can be. To out value on your dream images is a sure step towards more inner peace and acceptance. Like Robert Waggoner explained to us in his interview with me about Lucid dreaming plain and simple: dreams can provide key insights towards integrating your own shadow. those parts of yourself you are used to project on somebody else.

Mandorla consciousness #4

In the interview Jean Raffa told me that the key to a happy live is the ability to unite opposites. Her book holds valuable keys to make that work much easier. I wish I read this book years earlier. It would have saved me a lot of pain and mistakes. But then again, I might have missed out on a lot of wisdom…

Other Books from Jean Benedict Raffa:

Dream Theaters of the soul (clck the image for the kindle version)
What are your dreams telling you? Dr. Raffa believes that “dreams show us who we are and what we can become.” In this fascinating book of how to analyze dreams, explore the feminine aspects, and use dreams to grow emotionally and spiritually, Raffa combines the metaphor of a theatre with the practicality of a handbook to provide a practical guide to understanding your dreams.

Dream theaters of the soul kindle version


Bridge to wholeness

Bridge to Wholeness, ” describes an inner feminine way where one makes peace with dragons instead of fighting them. This moving account of a mythic journey from humility to strength, through darkness to light, carries a powerful message of unity and balance for seekers everywhere.”


If you purchase the book using this link, you will support the good work of Mindfunda

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Well of Remembrance: what goes down must come up

Ralph Metzner

The well is a familiar symbol in Myths and dreams.
I talked about it with Ralph Metzner this month
for a brand new Mindfunda Interview.

Ralph is a psychotherapist, Professor Emeritus at the California Institute of Integral Studies, poet and author. You can visit his website grounearthfound here. Mythology always played a significant part in his life and he wrote several books about it. One of these books is The Well of remembrance. (Click here to for the interview on YouTube)

The Well of remembrance is an exercise in ancestral remembrance -the kind of remembering that is the healing antidote to dis-membring"

The Well of Remembrance 

is filled with stories and facts about the history of Europe. Mirmir was the guardian of the well of wisdom. The name Mirmir is related to the Latin word memor. Mirmir’s well is the well of remembrance.

The well of remembrance

The aim of the book is to be a reminder of the importance of mythology in our critical times. Ralph explains in his book that the tribes that took over Europe had a civilization based on weapons, chariots and the taming of the horse. Their Gods and Goddesses where different from the rather peaceful hunter gatherers they submitted.

The one-eyed Odin is the God that builds three bridges that link apparently irreconcilable differences. Differences between the old Land Gods of the early inhabitants and the Sky gods of the new tribes. The first myth about Odin as bridge-builder is the self sacrifice of hanging himself on the Yggdrasil, the World Tree. Here he gets the gift of nature: to see and interpret natural rhythms.

In the second myth about Odin he sacrifices his eye to see how he can reconcile the war between the Aesir Sky gods and the Vanir land gods by creating a ritual of reconciliation. In the interview Ralph mentions that such rituals are so much-needed today in ordinary life as well as in politics.

In the third myth about Odin he descends down the roots of the Yggdrasil, meets Mirmir and gives one eye to the water that feeds the World Tree. Loosing the ability to recognize depth, he gains inner vision.

In my talk with him, Ralph Metzner emphasis that we should connect with the knowledge our ancestors. They wisper the stories you can only hear when you are at the foot of the World Tree Yggdrasil, diving in the emotional water of your past. The generations that lived before you, your ancestors can connect you with the Earth and all its wisdom.

He concludes the talk with the dedication in Well of Rembrance to the ancestors:

our ancestors,
who kept and told for us
the ancient stories

Our brothers and sisters,
who love the Earth
with all her beings

Our descendants,
who will inherit the Earth
and hear and tell again
the ancient stories

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 Jean Raffa author talks about her award winning book  Healing the sacred divide so be sure to sign up!

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Aboriginal ancient secrets scientifically explained

Photo @aboriginal art australia

Homo Sapiens left Africa 125,000 years ago and traveled to South Asia and Australia about 50,000 years ago. The aboriginal legends can help science now, but like in the old days: knowledge has to be paid for.

You have to pay knowledge and sometimes more than that. Science has gotten into a project of paying with astronomical knowledge to the Gunditjmara, an ancient tribe who has a legend about a wave killing everybody. It tells about the people who fled way up high and survived this giant wave. Professor James Goff, who specializes in Tsunamis, researched the land in the vicinity to find a layer of ocean sediment. This suggests that the legend indeed describes a Tsunami.

Scientists now are starting to believe that these old mythologies tell about events that took place thousands of years ago. But not a lot of aboriginals who can speak their ancient language are left. And those who still hold on to their old knowledge are reluctant to share it with scientists. So the scientists nowadays trade in the old-fashioned way. They trade knowledge: giving the aboriginals their knowledge of astronomy.

If you want to dive further into the mythology of the aboriginal there are some very good books available:

Myths and legends of the Australian aboriginals tells about their ancient stories.
A lot of myths are in this book: animal myths, personal myths, the myth of Puckowe, the Grandmother spirit…


Myths and legends of the Australian aboriginals


Another book filled with information about aboriginal wisdom is Voices of the first day written by Robert Lawlor. The book is a guide to the essence of a culture that was peaceful, wise and filled with dreams.

Voices of the first day

This book tells you about the spirituality of aboriginals and their Dreamtime: alcheringa. Alcheringa is the word used to denote the mythic times of ancestors of the totemic groups. Connecting in a very ancient manor with the wisdom of the earth and tuning into Dreamtime in another way.


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I will be uploading two very interesting interviews on my YouTube channel soon:
– Ralph Metzner, author Well of remembrance and one with
– Jean Raffa author of Healing the sacred divide .
So be sure to sign up!

Grab yourself a free e-book and learn all about mutual dreaming using this link. Don’t forget to join me on twitter: @susannevandoorn

Mindfunda puts new light on the shadow

shoot faster than your shadow


The shadow, your own inner dark personas. Carl Jung was the first to talk about it. The method of discovering your shadow types is well-known. Make up a list of thing you completely dislike about people your own gender. Et voila, there is a list of your dark side. Things you are reluctant to admit about yourself. But it does not all have to be that complicated and depressing. here are 5 relaxed ways of identifying and accepting your shadow.

Mindfunda’s 5 ways of interpreting shadow

Way of interpreting your shadow #1

We live in an age of technology. Work has been simplified by computers. the downside is that theer is a big change you might become replaced by a machine.
In their book Projecting the shadow: the cyborg hero in american film Thomas S. Frentz and Janice Hocker Rushing interpret films in a mythological way. They talk about sis movies: Jaws, the Deer Hunter, Manchurian candidate, Blade runner, Terminator and Terminator 2.

projecting the shadow: the cyborg hero in american film

The hunter mythology is taken to a new level because the machine represents the shadow part of the hero. The old wise man/shaman who knows about the spiritual strength necessary to endure life is replaced by half man – half machines. These cyborgs hunt the hunter.
A lot of science fiction films have played with this mythology, humanizing the computers. One comes to mind easily: Robot. In this film, the machine becomes human. Does this mean that the shadow gets integrated?

Way of interpreting your shadow #2

Monika Wikman writes in Pregnant Darkness: When Saturn’s shadow takes us to the place of no imagination, no play, no humor, and no movement, the jackass brings us humor. Without humor about your own shadow aspects, we encounter difficulties that affect our connection with and participation in the mysteries of life.


surviving saturn’s return

Every 28 years Saturn, the planet that represent your darker side, your challenges completes his circle around your birth chart. Surviving Saturn’s Return written by Sherene Schostak and Stefanie Weiss is a book that will help you identify 12 important lessons for your life. And it even promises you to help you find your true self.

Way of interpreting your shadow #3

Dr. Sharon Moalem writes in his book Inheritance: ..The real numbers are hard to come by but at least three-quarters of all children have been bullied at some point in their lives… Those experiences do more than psychological damage. There is a striking epigenetic change in children that were bullied. It changes your genes work and how they change your life.


The book of Moalem gives you insights into your genetic heritage, encourages you to find out more about your ancestors, to change your diet according to the needs of your genes. I think that a lot of psychological work can be taken over by biology. This book helps you in an easy way to make the best of your genetic heritage.

Way of interpreting your shadow #4

Befriend the second you. A lot of us walk around with the notion we have a secret self we need to hide. We are in good  company. Hear Marion Woodman talk about it. Saying yes is her secret, nurture the two aspects.

Dancing in the flames

In this book Marion tells you about the Black Goddess, Kali, about embracing chaos. To acknowledge your desire for creation as well as your capacity for destruction will make you a happier person. And you will enjoy the wisdom of a lady who is so knowledgable about the human psyche because she has lived it all. She will open the way for you to recover your shadow-self from your dreams and interpret them. Dreams are an invitation to get to know yourself better.

Way of interpreting your shadow #5

Lucid dreaming as a way of recognizing and incorporating your shadow. recently I interviewed Robert Waggoner about his new book Lucid dreaming plain and simple.  In his book he writes: “Jung felt that dreams occasionally bring up shadow elements that seek some kind of recognition. often, nightmarish or repulsive figures can be interpreted as shadow elements in the Jungian sense. By embracing these denied parts of the self and reintegrating them consciously, transformation occurs.

Lucid dreaming plain and simple

If you are not an experienced lucid dreamer, this is the book for you. It has several techniques, it has a spiritual and philosophical edge to it and it is filled with nice how to exercises.

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We don’t need another hero?


A long time ago a rather famous man wrote a book called: the Hero with a thousand faces:

A hero with a thousand faces
"The modern hero-deed must be that of questing to bring to light again the lost Atlantis of the coordinated soul".

An eye opener for many. A standard book for therapists and individuals wanting to get to know themselves better. I love the book. If you have not read it already, please use the link above to get yourself a copy (and you will support Mindfunda).

The hero myth has become the standard for stories, scripts, films and presentations. Nancy Duarte wrote an excellent book about it, using the ingredients of the hero myth:

Resonate Nancy Duarte

In a common story the hero is somebody you can relate to. An ordinary person living a rather ordinary live, being confronted with everyday trouble. Usually the hero is a man. After the introduction of the hero (remember that in most of your dreams YOU are the hero) he gets a calling to resolve a problem that affects whole of his tribe. In shawshank redemption an innocent man is thrown in jail. We feel for him. We resonate.
After getting setbacks, a helper appears. He has wisdom beyond compare and at first he eases the hero. Remember the Matrix? Neo didn’t think he was the one.
But his helper the wise Oracle knows.

In the modern series, often the hero is a rather autistic guy. He is really good at one thing. Excellent at one thing. But bad at relationships. His helper is usually a male or female he has no interest in for a mate. Take for example the series House.


His helper is Dr. Wilson. House does not want to solve problems for society. He wants to solve problems because he is good at it. He is very attractive for woman but does not have a princess to conquer.

Another series featuring a man with autistic traits is Elementary:


Here a descendant from Sherlock Holmes solves crimes with his helper Watson: only now is Watson being reborn in the beautiful actress Lucy Liu. Again, just like House he excels in one thing: deduction. And his aim is not to help society but just to do what he likes most. He is very attractive to woman but does not have a princess to conquer.

Both hero’s are very good with their minds, but lack social skills. What do you think? Is the Hero myth changing? Do we want to live our lives for us and not for the community we belong to? And if so, is that a good thing?

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Jim Morrison, rider on the storm?

I was re-reading Well of remembrance this weekend. In 1994 Ralph Metzner wrote this magnificent book. It tells you about how the mythology of Europe got integrated in America. You learn about Odin. Odin/Wotan was not only the one-eyed wanderer. He was a shaman. A changeling. He understood the energies of nature and could tape into its source. Traveling to different realms he could take the form of any creature. He was a changeling…

Jim morrison
Well of remembrance

I remember when I was a child. My older brother used to play LA woman. On that record there are two songs that indicate that Jim Morrison was “begeisterd” with the Odin spirit. Listen to his song…


Odin represents the energy of inspiration, he is the creator of the word. By sacrificing himself hanging in the world tree he mastered the language of the runes and became the master of the power of speech. Jim was a poet, a perfect person to be susceptible for this ancient energy. Odin was the inspirator of poets.
Odin also is a symbol for the power of divination. He was like the “spirit in the bottle”. Unfortunately in Jim, the energies where so much unbalanced that the bottle got the better of him.
A third aspect that is typical about Odin we see also reflected in the songs of Jim. Odin was “walking through the World Wind forming speech through his breath”. The wind could take on a stormy forecast like the black depressing song Riders on the storm. The song is devoted to the wind. The song is based on a legend of a cowboy seeing oxen with red eyes being chased by the spirits of death men on horses. It was the last song Jim would ever record with the Doors.

If you want to read more about Jim Morrison here is a book that portrays him as a wisdom seeker just like Odin who sacrificed his eye to the well of wisdom:

Jim Morrison, friends gathered together

I will be interviewing Ralph Metzner soon and putting it on my Youtube channel so be sure to sign up!
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Red Book reading: searching the soul

The Red book. First time I laid eyes on it I craved for it. It is a huge book (not very useful that is why I put a link to the readers’ edition up here) and filled with amazing art. It made an impression on me.

I have had the book for several years now and I decided to actually read it. I must confess I am one of the few people who dares to say aloud that reading Jung often confuses me. He wants to be too scientific and I stumble from one definition into another. Every time I read Jung and I was about to be captured by his intellect he kept on juggling with definitions.



Red Book


I feared the Red Book would be the same. Thankfully it is not. I think it is a very stimulating book. Let me take you on a journey to look for our souls.

Red Book
Red Book Carl Jung

Today I read the famous piece about how Jung had a vision of how Europe was going to change in 1915. He had a premonition about the First World War. That event made a big impression and got him to create the concept of the Collective unconscious. It shows how highly intelligent Jung was, creating a concept around an intuitive notion. To understand and appreciate the magnitude of this construction you need to know more about Jung.

Jung was the only surviving child of reform pastor Paul and a Emilie Jung, a paranormal gifted lady. The tension between the strict and clear theological rules his father lived by and the more experimental spirituality his mother engaged in can be found in the question that Jung asked himself in the Red Book.
Jung puts two energies opposite each other. The “Spirit of this Time” versus “The Spirit of Depths”.

We all have struggled with both energies. The Spirit of this Time wants us to be rational, scientific. We live in an age where everything can be explained. This energy made Jung, like Einstein, yearn to search for “The Supreme Meaning“.
But this energy of the Supreme Meaning is hardly reconcilable with The Spirit of This Time: “To understand a thing is a bridge and possibility of return to the path. But to explain a matter is arbitrary and sometimes even murder. Have you counted the murders among scholars?”

Have you ever searched for your soul? Have you ever incubated a dream about it? (I am going to do it, I will let you know how that works out). Have you ever felt a glimpse of the Supreme Meaning Carl Jung talks about? I can intuitively understand it and I think I was more connected with it when I was a child.

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Spirit molecule: the stuff dreams are made of


It has long been speculated that Dimethyltryptamin (DMT), a form of Tryptophan, one of the building blocks of melatonin, is the thing that contributes to dreaming images.

Rick Strassman: The spirit molecule


Rick Strassman wrote a book about it called: “The spirit molecule”. In the book he explains how the pineal gland produces DMT each night. How the dying people have more DMT in their blood. How is gives good experiences. There are even people who experiment on using it as a drug to see how it influences their dreams and lucid experiences.


Spirit Molecule
DMT Rick Strassman

If you want to read more about Rick Strassman and his research you can buy his book (If you use the link in this article you support Mindfunda). You can also read more about his work at the site Cottonwood Research foundation.

I found this quote written by Javier Reyna: “We don’t know whether DMT is made in the pineal. I muster a lot of circumstantial evidence supporting a reason to look long and hard at the pineal, but we do not yet know. There are data suggesting urinary DMT rises in psychotic patients when their psychosis is worse. However, we don’t know whether DMT rises during dreams, meditation, near-death, death, birth or any other endogenous altered state. To the extent those states resemble those brought on by giving DMT, it certainly makes one wonder if endogenous DMT might be involved, and if it were, it would explain a lot. But we don’t know yet. Even if the pineal weren’t involved, that would have little overall effect on my theories regarding a role for DMT in endogenous altered states, because we do know that the gene involved in DMT synthesis is present in many organs, particularly lung. If the pineal made DMT, it would tie up a lot of loose ends regarding this enigmatic little organ. But people seem to live pretty normals lives without a pineal gland; for example, when it has had to be removed because of a tumor.”

So there is a lot of debate about the molecules that influence dreaming. Acetylcholine, Dimethyltryptamine, there is a nightly dance between substances going on. The spirit molecule leads the way.

Moon tribute: Connie Kaplan about ‘The woman’s Book of Dreams’

The Moon has an effect on dreams. We have known that for a long time, even though we might not realize it consciously. I spoke with Connie Kaplan about the effect the moon has on dreaming. Watch the complete interview on Mindfunda’s YouTube channel so you can enjoy it too (don’t forget to subscribe).

Connie is a woman who “dreamed herself awake”. During a time she was burned out, she dreamed and she kept on dreaming. She shares that valuable information with you in her books and in the interview.


Connie’s book “The Woman’s book of dreams” is divided into five parts. The first part is about astrology. Connie broke down in 1986 and rebuilt herself using dreams, spiritual guidance and the power of the moon. If you listen to the interview you can enjoy her energy and her wisdom.

The Moon is affecting dreams

In the first part she talks about how the moon affects dreaming. This made her distinguish several types of dreaming that might shed a new light on the dreams in your dream journal. She talks with us about the 13 types of dreaming she recognizes and how they can help you.

If you have a dream circle, or think about starting one, you should really take a look at the interview. Connie Kaplan describes a very powerful method (buy The woman’s book of Dreams if you want to know all about it). It has been the method that I use myself. The power of silence can really intensify the messages a dreamer comprehends about a dream in a dream circle, Not speaking when you have nothing to say is a spiritual act.

The woman’s book of dreams Connie Kaplan

A thing almost all of us do while working with dreams, is projecting our problems of the past on them. Connie Kaplan talks about re-dreaming the past in a powerful way. She discusses the myth of Persephone, queen of the real of the death with us because that is a recurrent myth for women everywhere. Taken into the dark Persephone takes charge and becomes queen.

The dreaming of the future is a thing we all know. But often we do not talk about it. We ignore it or reason it away. Connie talks about an extraordinary coincidence that happened in her dream group. A mutual insight her dream group had into an important future catastrophy.

And the last subject is about giving the gift. It is Connie’s calling to help you embrace your contract of life. The most important clause in your contract giving your gift. Embracing yourself and enjoying life.

This and nore is discussed in my recent interview with Conny Kaplan. I hope you enjoy watching the complete  interview!

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Earth day: the magnetic field of the earth

Earth's magnetic field
Earth’s magnetic field

On this beautiful picture above you can see the magnetic field of the Earth. To me, the earth looks like a Spider. I am not surprised that the oldest mythologies about the origins of the universe talk about the Spider Grandmother who created all.
So what exactly is the magnetic field of the earth?

The earth its core is composed out of iron and nickel. These function as a magnet. The Earth’s magnetic North Pole is in North Canada and its magnetic South pole is in Antarctica. This field enables you to use GPS on your cellphone (and find your parked car back in foreign cities). This magnetic field is generated by the flow of liquids in the earth, and changes due to solar wind.

In 1996, Stanley Krippner of Saybrook University published an article about the influences of the changes in the magnetic field of the earth on our dreams: “Dreams and Distance Target Material”. In his article he states that “there is more telepathic dreaming during decreased geometric activity”. But also finds that “visual apparitional experiences occur more frequently on days with enhanced geometrical activity”.

In a more recent stud, in 2009, Darren Lipnicki, a psychologist formerly at the Center for Space Medicine in Berlin, Germany compared his dream content with the Earth’s magnetic field and found that during periods of low activity his dream content was what he called “bizarre”. In a seven-year period he collected 2,387 dreams and scaled them on bizarreness on a five point scale. Then he compared it with the K-index, a scale used to characterize the magnitude of geomagnetic storms.

If you want to know more about the Earth and its magnetic field this is just the book for you:

The Magnetic Universe

It tells you all you need to know about the history of the Earth, the formation of the magnetic field and magnetism.

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and grab yourself a free ebook about mutual dreaming.


Spring: when Earth marries nature, or do your dreams change in tune with earth’s cycle?

Spring: I like this season. The temperature is easy: not too warm, not too cold, the Earth returns from the realms of Hades. During Spring several years ago I had this dream:

I am standing in a forest, surrounded by elves and fairies. I have the feeling I am "the chosen one" because it is not common for a human being to get invited to a ceremony like this. Even though I am not quite sure what is going to happen, the air is filled with expectation. I feel the tension of all the magical creatures that have gathered here this evening... Behind a tree a beautiful lady appears, dressed in a green gown. She is waiting, searching for her mate. Suddenly there is a zooming sound. I understand intuitively that this is what she has been waiting for. Her mate. a man dressed in brown, appears in the sky. Where did he come from? He just suddenly materialized.. The Green goddess and the brown man fly towards each other. When they meet in the sky there is a celebration of light: all colors sparkle in the sky...

I dream of Spring

I think this dream speaks of the marriage of the earth (in my dream symbolized by the brown man) with nature (the Green goddess). In her book “The Myth of the Goddess” Anne Baring says: Fire, light and the dazzling luminosity of the starry dimension are all images that were associated through the ages with the radiance of Wisdom, which, as a fusion of love and insight, or gnosis, expresses the union of queen and king, the highest feminine and masculine qualities of the soul”

The myth of the Goddess Anne Baring and Jules Cashford

So many times, after dreaming like this I look up information in The Myth of the Goddess. Anne Baring is a very well-educated, thorough analyst of ancient mythology, stories, poems and themes. She presents a wealth of information about the Goddess.

I recently interviewed Anne Baring about her book Dream of the Cosmos. I put it on my YouTube channel, please subscribe because I will be putting more interviews here soon. Dream of the Cosmos is, just like The Myth of the Goddess a valuable addition to your bookcase.

Dream of the cosmos Anne Baring


Spring is the time to become fertile again

Spring is the time for the Earth to flourish, to become fertile again. Being invited to witness this ceremony is very special. Being surrounded by magical creatures gives the atmosphere a special vibrance. Is spring also your favorite time of year? Do your dreams change in tune with Earth’s cycles? I think mine do! At the darkest times, Christmas, the return of the light changes my dream content. I have organized a Holy dreaming internet group for several years. There is an ancient believe that during the period surrounding Christmas the veil between the worlds is transparent. Information from the future can be dreamed of in advance.

What are your experiences? Does spring change your dream content?


Lego Ninjago

Today’s Mindfunda made possible by Luc van Nijnanten, Lego Master by birth

lego ninjago
lego ninjago

Mythology isn’t gone. It is very much alive. In the stories of the children playing with Lego bricks, in the games they play. Take for example Lego Ninjago. Each Ninjago master represents an element.

Lego Ninjago on Amazon: Jay, Cole, Kai, Zane

Lego Ninjago Cole: is the master of Earth, Lego Ninjago Jay, the master of lightning, Lego Ninjago Zane. the master of ice and Kai is the master of fire. All elements are present!

Lord Garmedon is the bad guy in the story. He was not always bad, but once he was bitten by the Great Defeater snake. The badness started to drip into his soul after this bite. It made him steal the weapons of the four masters. It became the battle between good and evil. After this battle Lord Garmadon was banned into the underworld where he reigns the evil skeletons.

Do you recognise some familiar themes? Seductions by snakes, a master of the underworld, lord of all evil. It is very symbolic for the way we understand our psyche today. We need the weapons of our inner ice, fire, earth and air.
We need the psychic energy of the opposing elements that conflict within our soul: ice versus fire, earth versus air. We want something and we need to find an inner balance between our inner fire and the cold cost-benefit analysis. We aim for something, but we have to make sure the goal can be manifested on earth.

Children getting to know the energy of their shadow through Lord Garmadon is a very important thing. I even dare to say it is not only a personal, but a cultural shadow.

It reminds me of the experiment conducted by Milgram. He wanted to find out if people who are well-behaved and socially adjusted can commit crimes. In his experiment people had to punish a student (not a real person, but the people in the trail did not know this).  I think it is a good thing to make people aware of this  at an early age.

5 series to watch

If you are interested in psychology, mythology and spirituality you are always looking for new inspiration. You do not like the average brainless series, you want a series that makes you think! That has a mythological edge. An unexpected vision.
Here is Mindfunda’s list of 5 series to watch:

Series to watch #1: Heroes

Heroes is a tale about human connection. Five strangers across the globe have remarkable abilities. They meet because there is a dark plot going on: the destruction of civilization as we know it. All ingredients are there: 12 people in a secret organization, the mother (Angela Petrelli) being able to dream the future, the shadow (Sylar) destroying lives and loves. I will not say anything more, just watch for yourself. Enjoy seeing George Takei play the father of charming Hiro Nakomoto, the guy who can bend space and time.

series to watch: Heroes
Heroes season 1


Series to watch #2: Orphan black

Do you ever have the feeling that there is a twin soul out there? Orphan black’s Sarah Manning (Tatiana Maslany) meets her twin sister at a rather bad time: when she commits suicide by jumping in front of the train. Sarah’s life is a mess and she decides to take the place of her lookalike. Something we all have fantasized about. And even though her original plan was plain and simple: get the money of her deceased twin sister and run she gets involved in her own shadows and her own lies. Every time she is real, she saves the day, showing more guts than any of her other remarkable clones. The series has a Jungian edge: the parts of the Self need to be integrated to solve the problem.

series to watch: Orphan Black
Orphan Black Tatiana Maslany


Series to watch #3: Merlin

Almost all of us know of the secret weapon of King Arthur: Merlin. Merlin has become legendary. To make a series about him that was worth looking at, the BBC created an unexpected edge: Merlin in his younger years. The series is about how Merlin gets into the court of the prince who is destined to become one of the greatest Kings in Europe. If you watch the series, you can see how Uther Pendragon symbolises the super ego, Arthur is the rational mind, and Merlin represents the magic.

series to watch: Merlin

Series to watch #4: Grimm

Grimm is about a descendant from the famous brothers Grimm who wrote down all the fairy tales. Nick Burkhardt (David Giuntoli), who works as a detective solving murders, discovers he has the ability to see people change in scary beasts. He finds out this has been running in the family: he is a Grimm. Each Grimm has the ability to see Wesen: fairy tale like creatures who are disguised as human beings. He befriends the big bad wolf who apparently only got a bad rep: Monroe is his bridge between the two realms of realities.

series to watch: Grimm

Series to watch #5: Once upon a time

Series to watch: Once (upon a time)
Once (upon a time)

Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) takes Henry Mills to his home: Storybrooke. The Happy Endings are gone and he is convinced she is the one who can bring them back. Emma gets convinced more and more and discovers that she is the daughter of Snow white and prince Charming. That the Evil Step mother is not that evil (although the red apple jokes are really very funny) and my ultimate favorite is Rumpelstiltskin aka Mr. Gold: “All magic comes with a price“. One thing I really likes about this series is that the ladies in this modern fairy tales are active emancipated females and not desperate princesses that wait to be saved. Snow white (Ginnifer Goodwin) is a street robber: steeling from the rich giving to the poor.

Let me know if you missed any series on this list. If you like it, please share it.

Hathor the Goddess of dreams

On January 6th 2015, Moon in Leo. In my dream I am on a farm. I cut open the stomach of a cow to put two frozen meatballs inside, so she will get pregnant. The meat balls are cold, they almost feel frozen so I try to warm them in my hands before I put them into their mothers' uterus. I close the uterus and walk out, only to walk back in again a few minutes later, to open the cow up again and double-check the eggs.

Hathor the Goddess of dreams


Hathor, the Egyptian Goddess was known as the Goddess of dreams. Depicted as the horned Goddess, she always reminds me about a dream I once had where horns grew out of my stomach. If you look at the recurring theme of stomach dreams I have had you can see how my dreaming mind connects horns pregnancy. The horned Goddess is an ancient Goddess. The horns symbolize the crescending moon. Pointing upwards they transport heavenly energy into the earthly realm. Dreaming while the moon is in Leo is dreaming about passion, about the heart, about new possibilities. They only need a bit of warmth..

Hathor worshiped not only in Egypt and Nubia but as far as West Asia and Somalia. Hathor the cow – goddess fed the pharaoh. She was an ultimate Goddess, mother of the milky way. Women in Egypt where glad to become priestesses of Hathor. I visited her temple in Dendra, last century.

I know how this dream became instigated. I read this book about Hathor:

Dancing for Hathor

Dancing for Hathor is a book that links her with the information about the great mother goddess. It enlightens us about the status of women in ancient Egypt: the Queen mother was very powerful, other women where less important.
You can see in my dream how the cow is a Queen mother in the making. It does reflect my own image as a queen mother. My children are growing up way too fast, just like my father always said about me.
Another thing about the book struck me. Remember that I had my dream with the moon in the sign of Lion? I want to end with this quote from the book:

When a man smells myrrh his wife is like a cat before him,
When a man is suffering his wife is a lioness before him

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Anne Baring Dream of the Cosmos: 4 Intriguing Questions

“I must learn that the dregs of my thoughts, my dreams, are the speech of my soul. I must carry them in my heart, and go back and forth over them in my mind, like the words of the person dearest to me” Carl Jung Red Book
Anne Baring Dream of the Cosmos: Question #1

If the Cosmos is a living unity, what would it be dreaming about?

Anne Baring, author of Dream of the Cosmos, starts the Mindfunda interview by telling us the dream that started it all. She had a very profound dream about Shekinah (I wrote about Shekinah in this earlier post). This dream made Anne aware that everything in the universe is connected.


What is femininity?

anne baring dream of the cosmos
Photo: Evan Kirby


In my interview as well as in Dream of the Cosmos Anne redefines femininity. It is not about seductiveness and fertility. It is about the connection with the soul. An inner connection to honour your awareness of soul.


How do I connect with the soul?

Anne touches upon Buddha and Jesus as people being in touch with the Soul. They wanted to convince people of the inter-connectedness we all share. The Kabbalah is a tradition that plays an important role in the Dream of the Cosmos. Its ancient wisdom reveals so much about our universe and its hidden laws.



How do we feel this connectedness, when we are in pain?

In a mythological perspective Dream of the Cosmos talks about the pain the myth of the fall has caused. How it encouraged misogyny, the hatred for women. It was a false perception that has been haunting the world since the Neolithic time.

Anne talks about how quantum science confirms the insights she reveals in Dream of the Cosmos. About how she feels about the tragedy of Germanwings. About sin being a trauma inflicted in childhood. About how we need the dark side of our personality because dark matter is the biggest creative force in the universe.


Watch my 4-chapter video interview with author Anne Baring about ‘Dream of the Cosmos’  to find out how this book will change your life for the better.

Ann Baring

Anne Baring, author and Jungian analyst, wrote her magnum opus: ‘Dream of the Cosmos’ in 2013. Click on the picture to buy it:

Dream of the Cosmos - Anne Baring
‘Dream of the Cosmos – a quest for the soul ‘ by Anne Baring



I have an excellent Mythology Course you can follow online: Mindfunda Mythology

I like nothing better than to give away valuable information to make your life better. Here are two books to choose from: 10 tips to remember more dreams and a report on Mutual Dreaming 

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Shekinah, or how snakes sometimes are successful spirit guides

I interviewed Anne Baring yesterday (I will try to publish the interview tomorrow). She is the writer of Dream of the cosmos and she talked about the Shekinah. The Shekinah is an ancient Goddess, refered to in Judaism as the “dwelling particle of God”. The holy spirit in the Catholic church. The vision of Shekinah came to her in a dream. A life changing dream that took several decades to show its meaning. Anne told me that “This was not only a dream for me, but a dream for everybody in the cosmos”. A Big Dream.

Maybe, just like me, you can grasp Shekinah intuitively. I always thought of God as the goodness of all living things on earth, combined into one energy. It makes sense to me to call this energy Shekenah. In early Judaism she was known as the Wisdom Goddess, later also known as Sophia.

The cosmic Shekinah

Because I am a curious person, I bought myself one of the best books about Shekinah: the cosmic Shekinah. A dove is on the book cover: there is a special relationship between Shekina and the dove. Here is the writer David Rankine explaining this himself. The Dove used to be a bird of wisdom. Remember how Noah sent out a dove to check if the waters had lowered enough?

In this exciting book Sorita D’Este and David Rankine show how Shekinah is related to Isis the Egyptian mother Goddess, to Inanna the Sumerian Goddess that had to decent to hell to find life and to Astarte, the goddess of fertility in Canaan.

The snake we all know from the bible as the bad guy who seduced Eve to eat from the forbidden fruit, is the companion of Shekinah. But as a symbol of healing. The snake is the symbol of life after death and resurrection. Sometimes in churches, Mother Mary (the most modern expression of the ancient Mother Goddess) stands on a snake. The snake as a symbol of power.

I can recommend this book to you if you want to know more about the divine feminine. And Anne Baring re-defined femininity. It is not about women, not about power. It is about fertility. It is about growth. About nurturing. About the inner light. In both males and females.

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I will be uploading two very interesting interviews on my YouTube channel soon. Ralph Metzner, author Well of remembrance and one with Jean Raffa author of Healing the sacred divide be sure to sign up!

Grab yourself a free e-book and learn all about mutual dreaming using this link

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Chocolate: one taste is all it takes

Chocolate: in this film of Lasse Hallström Vianne and her daughter Anouk move into a small catholic French village. From the first scene on it is clear that Vianne Rocher is a Goddess. Her ancestry is from the old Mayan tribe that knew about the ways of healing with chocolate.


Chocolate: one taste is all it takes…

Did you know that there is a Mayan chocolate Goddess of fertility? Ixcacao. This Goddess lived among the people and listen to their needs. Look how Vianne listens to her customers. But Ixcacoa was not blessed for long. She had to marry the God of commerce. Patriarchical Kings demanded that a child would be sacrificed each year to ensure the return of the sun. Ixcacoa climbed up the stairs with them each year to make the path to death easier by feeding them chocolate on their way up to their fate. In the film, this plot is reversed. the crown, grandmother Armande (Judi Dench) sacrifices herself. She throws a party were Vianne cooks the most lovely chocolate dinner. But being a diabetic she does not survive. Her sacrifice is the key that turns things around. Vianne becomes a Matriarch, a Queen. She is finally able to restore her independence and settle down. But not only the Goddess/anima part is represented in a magnificent way. The animus is displayed in all its forms: Roux as the puer, the wandering fool; Comte de Reynaud as the enforcer of the rules and Serge, the irresponsible dronk. All of the males desperately need to connect with their anima. The sacrifice of Armande triggers a turning point in their lives… Are you a chocolate lover yourself? After seeing this film you want to make your own healing recipes: chocolate covered Katie is the lady who knows how to make chocolate that heals. Over 80 recipes that are good for you.

Chocolate healing


Chocolate Dreams: Free Tips

I link nothing more than to give away things. Do you want help remembering more dreams? I have a free ebook filled with easy tips for you to download. Just remember to stop eating chocolate after 2 o’clock in the afternoon.

Free eBooks for new subscribers:

We offer a choice of 2 free eBooks as a thank-you gift for new subscribers to Mindfunda Monthly, our newsletter with a recap of our articles, course information and monthly freebies.

Freebie #1: “10 easy ways to instantly improve your dream memory” (entry-level)

eBook: 10 ways to improve dream memory - Mindfunda
eBook: 10 ways to improve dream memory – Mindfunda:

Freebie #2: “Mutual Dreaming Model” (for advanced readers)

Everything you always wanted to know about mutual dreaming in a comprehensive  free e-book. The book is filled with mutual dream stories, a model you can use to enhance your own success to meet somebody in your dreams.

free eBooks
free eBooks

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What is Mindfunda about?

My name is Susanne van Doorn, I am a Dutch psychologist, blogger and author. I have been working with psychology, dreams and mythology ever since I finished my study in psychology at Tilburg University. I made this independant site to share insights, and recent scientific articles about the brain, dreams, and mythology for use in your personal life. This posting is categorised as Mythofunda: “Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths” Joseph Campbell used to say. This part of Mindfunda shows you how your personal mythology can create peace in your life.

Read more about Mindfunda here, or visit our Courses Page.

(Ready for more free Mindfunda content on ‘#MYTHOLOGY‘?

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I want to thank Jungian Author Susan Scott, artist Brenda Ferrimani and Psychoanalyst Lou Hagood for their advice on Mindfunda Movie. It is the season to watch a film. Days are ...
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Unicorn: two visions on a fierce healer

Do you remember your first encounter with a unicorn? Nobody ever saw one, but everyone knows the unicorn and everyone likes it.

Even though we all think the unicorn is a mythological animal, there are no mythological stories about unicorns. Maybe because people used to think it was a living animal and not a mythological one.

In Lascaux France, where in the Stone age drawings were made there is this picture of a unicorn:

Unicorn in Lascaux France

As far as 14,000 years ago. Ctesias, Greek traveler is the first one to write about unicorns. Julias Caesor claimed to have seen them running around in the German Hercynian forest. Cosmas Indicopleustes mentioned them in the sixth century. He did not actually see one. He tells that in the court of Ethiopia there is “a brass figure of a ferocious beast whose strength lies in its horn”. The horn of the unicorn can neutralize poison and give healing.

The Unicorn as a healer

If you look at this clip from the BBC series “Merlin” you see the unicorn as a symbol of trust, intuition and healing. This ultimate faith in nature is violated by the prince (Arthur in his younger years) and applauded by Uther, If you see Artur as the ego and Uther as rationality, the scene tells you that you have to trust in healing, friendship and unity between people.
In the bible the unicorn is mentioned several times.
Later, in the Middle ages, the unicorn became associated with Christ. His horn is healing, and he lies his head at rest in the lap of a virgin (the Virgin Mary).

The Unicorn as the devil

The other vision on the unicorn is that it is a creation of the devil. In Physiologus, an ancient Greek text from an unknown author the unicorn is the evil that can be overcome by the Virgin. The unicorn as a sexual symbol, being hunted by men and captured by a virgin is enough to run the imagination wild.

Carl Jung thought that the unicorn could be a symbol of the Self in the magical process of individuation. In the Mindfunda Magnificent t-shirt you can show your awareness of the magic and symbolism surrounding us: “Dreams tell the myths, forgotten by the day”. A quote from Jung to tell the world you listen to magic.


What your cd collection tells about your personality traits

Psychologist Sam Gosling wrote an interesting book about what your material stuff (your cd and book collection even your paintings and even your Facebook profile) tells about who you are. Snoop: what your stuff says about you:

Snoop: what your stuff says about your personality traits


personality traits
What your cd collection tells about your personality

Sam Gosling assumes that your stuff gives a clear indication about who you are. He analyses using the five traits that all people share. The Big Five personality traits are: Openness to experience, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism.
Art tells about how open and curious you are (I love paintings and there are three my bedroom wall). Books tell about your ambition (Oh my gosh, we had to buy three bookshelves to organize all my books!). People who hang quotes on the wall are bound to be a bit more neurotic than average (that would make a very good quote on a lovely t-shirt).

If you have different kind of music cd’s in your collection you are probably an open-minded character.  People who like punk are less friendly. People who have a high score on the friendliness scale of the Big Five test usually sit in the middle of the room were they work. Your Facebook profile page gives a reasonably good indication of your personality.

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Dream of the Cosmos interview

Mindfunda proudley presents the first Mindfunda Skype Meeting! On April 02 2015 I will present my interview with Anne Baring.

dream of the cosmos
Anne Baring


Anne Baring (, author and Jungian analyst, wrote her magnum opus The Dream of the Cosmos in 2013.

The book is the story about living in a Western culture that has lost the connection to a deeper reality and how this affects all our lives. She belongs to a new organization called Rising Women, Rising World Rising Women, Rising World that is calling on women everywhere to come together to create a world that works for all.
Other books Anne Baring has written as co-author with others are: The Myth of the GoddessEvolution of an ImageThe Mystic VisionThe Divine Feminine, and Soul Power: An Agenda for a Conscious Humanity. Her children’s book, The Birds Who Flew Beyond Time, has been honored with a Nautilus Gold Award for 2011.
We will be talking about dreams, intuition and how everything in the cosmos seems to be connected. We are all part of this cosmos. Our bodies are constructed from the same material that cosmos originated from. How can you interpret that connectiveness looking at your life-story? How can you feel connected through the friends you make? the stories you read? and even in the arguments you engage in? Anne Baring used ancient knowledge to write about a new vision for a way of living we need now more then ever.
Be sure to tune in and sign up to the blog using the button on the left side of the screen.

Things my grandmother didn’t tell me

I am at a party, but I have left the house were the music is playing. I walk outside and see a pool of water. Near the pool there is a lady. Black curly hair. With an incredibly fast move of her fingers she snaps a fish out of the water and slaps him against the ground. The eye of the fish jumps in the air. I am in shock. I capture the fish and lie it back in the water, trying to revive it. But it is too late...

The lady in my dream is my grandmother. I never knew her. She died in childbirth. In Japanese mythology she is considered to be an Ubume. A spirit that wonders around searching for her child.

Ancestry is important

My grandmother

Ubume was originally the name for a small fish. With her smashing the fish in my dream she seemed to have a message for me. When she died giving birth to her fifth child at the age of 35 she had been a faithful Catholic. She had no knowledge of Japanese mythology, yet this dream was the first one in a dream – epos she wanted to share with me.

I am walking in a town I do not know. All of a sudden there is a woman walking behind me with a baby. I turn around and look into her eyes. I am startled that her eyes have a very spiritual green-brown color. She has a baby in her arms and hands it over to me. I do not feel like taking it from her, my baby-days are over. She is persistent and pushes the baby in my arms. A very lovely chubby baby boy.
Ubume Toriyama Sekien

My grandmother gave birth, the morning she died, August 22 1928, to a baby boy. My uncle. The Japanese folklore assumes a mother that dies in childbirth is not able to find rest untill her child is put into safe care. Did she smash the fish in the first dream to make way for the second one? The dreams were she gave her chubby baby boy a safe home?

About a year ago my uncle died, very unexpected. I went to pay my respect to his wife and his children. The night after his funeral I met her again…

I am sitting at a dining table with a lot of people I know in my dream (but not in waking life). We are talking laughing and eating. Then the mood changes. Very strange, but something is happening at the energy level of the dream. And there she is again, at the head of the table. Those same mesmerizing green brown eyes.She says: "did you take care of him?" I don't know what to say but we exchange a lot of feelings in the look we share. Desperation, joy, the feeling of incompetence, anger at the brutality of the world, a feast of recognition that there is a woman so similar to me. 

Ancestry has this strange way of connecting themes, worries and sorrows.

My grandmother had to work very hard, being pregnant every year and she did not see much of the world. Ancestry also can help you to realize you are not the only one that has to solve problems in this world. In her picture, the only picture I have ever seen from her, she wears her best hat and necklace. She looks a bit scared, as if the flash light from the camera startled her.

The things my grandmother never told me… About children, about childbirth and its dangers. And maybe the stories about how she perceived the world. All those things she gave to me in that one look filled with emotions. It was magic, a form of communication I only know from my dreams.

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"My brain is the most beautiful part of my body" - Shakira quote
“My brain is the most beautiful part of my body” – Shakira quote

Monty Python and the Holy Grail: trapped between watery tarts and supreme executive power

Film is the modern way of telling mythology. Monty Python did a very good job of re-telling the old mythology of the Grail legend. Do you know why they used coconuts in the first scene were King Arthur comes jumping along pretending to ride a horse? Not only to safe money as the crew has told the world.. No: the coconut is a symbol of sacrifice that turns salt water into sweet. And that is the Grail’s quest as Emma Jung describes it. To turn the salt in the man into sweet. The Grail as the ultimate healer. Ultimate? No something is missing…

Monty Python the Holy Grail

Guard: Who goes there?
King Arthur: It is I, Arthur, son of Uther Pendragon, from the castle of Camelot. King of the Britons, defeater of the Saxons, Sovereign of all England!
Guard: Pull the other one!
King Arthur: I am, and this is my trusty servant Patsy. We have ridden the length and breadth of the land in search of knights who will join me in my court at Camelot. I must speak with your lord and master.
Guard: What? Ridden on a horse?
King Arthur: Yes!
Guard: You're using coconuts!
King Arthur: What?
Guard: You've got two empty halves of coconut and you're banging' 'em together.
King Arthur: So? We have ridden since the snows of winter covered this land, through the kingdom of Mercia, through...
Guard: Where'd you get the coconuts?
King Arthur: We found them.
Guard: Found them? In Mercia?! The coconut's tropical!
King Arthur: What do you mean?
Guard: Well, this is a temperate zone.
King Arthur: The swallow may fly south with the sun or the house martin or the plover may seek warmer climes in winter, yet these are not strangers to our land?
Guard: Are you suggesting that coconuts migrate?
King Arthur: Not at all. They could be carried.
1st soldier with a keen interest in birds: What? A swallow carrying a coconut? 
King Arthur: It could grip it by the husk!
Guard: It's not a question of where he grips it! It's a simple question of weight ratios! A five ounce bird could not carry a one pound coconut.
King Arthur: Well, it doesn't matter. Will you go and tell your master that Arthur from the Court of Camelot is here?
Guard: Listen. In order to maintain air-speed velocity, a swallow needs to beat its wings forty-three times every second, right?
King Arthur: Please!
Guard: Am I right? (source Wikepedia)

The swallow in Monthy Python and the Holy Grail -either African or European- is an ancient symbol the mother: if a mother looses a baby, the swallow is the one singing a song of hope for her. In The Grail legend Emma Jung says:

the Grail legend Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz

“The Grail realm” represents the primal image of the mother, the wonderous vessel. It is so self-evident that this is a symbol of the feminine”.

In the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail the sword Excalibur is only referenced upon on the side. Dennis a very political aware farm worker. “You can’t expect to wield supreme executive power because some watery tart threw a sword at you.”  This watery tart, also known as Morgana, lady of the lake is denied any divine interference. This is the clash between the old world and the new world. And it is best seen as a very funny joke. Dennis is very well read, and very aware of his worth. He makes the old noble King Arthur look very silly. I think that is why this is one of the funniest moments of the film. We recognize this. On one hand we are the silly old noble Arthur, claiming our kingdom, at the other hand we are rational beings.

Monthy Python and the holy grail
Knight of the Grail code


Rick Kasparek writes in his “Knight of the Grail Code”: “If the Grail is the symbol of internal healing, perhaps the sword is the tool for taking that healing beyond the individual and out into the world. The Grail focusses our attention internally. Excalibur is something different, and it is something perhaps missing in Jungian psychology. Excalibur is the tool of power in the world. Coupled with the Grail, however, it becomes something new, a sword both cuts and heals.”
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Are you afraid of death? she asked me…

I am standing outside. A car comes along the street, a long black car, with an official “limousine” – like appearance.
She steps out of the car. I reach for her hands to help her. She is so cold that I feel frozen too. I look into her slender face, and she looks so old and tired…

“Were you supposed to leave the hospital?” I ask. She does not answer.
She sighs, steps back just a tiny bit as if she expects rejection. “Are you afraid of death?” A question so direct and so profound.. I was shaken to the core…

Should I answer that I am afraid of death? Should I answer that sometimes I just long for things to end? Would that give her the relief she so desperately seeks? I do not know what to do but to give her the warmth I feel inside my living and relatively healthy body.  I put my arms around her to give her the warmth of life and I say “Everything must come to an end.”

Everything must come to an end. Life can be as simple as that. This dream about my mother made me think back about the last time I visited my mother in hospital. I knew that she was going to die, but I was afraid to share that information. I am sure I did the right thing by not telling her.

Dreaming about the death
A dreamers guide through the land of the deceased

I did some research about dreaming of the lost loved ones and I wrote a book about it: “A dreamers guide into the land of the deceased”. I gathered more than 100 dreams worldwide and took them seriously. I literally read the dreams as  tales about life on the other side. A glimpse in the realm of Hades.

Like my own dream about death, many of the dreams I analyzed involved a social gathering. A meeting, a shared meal, a discussion between several people. I found in every dream a clue that enabled people to act in the world. Cause dreams are useless until you act upon them.

So now, you clever reader of Mindfunda are going to ask me: “What did you do with this dream of yours Susanne van Doorn?”. Well, it was more of a spiritual act I engaged upon after dreaming this dream. I acknowledged that my mother and I are so much alike. That might seem a small thing but in waking life I never felt really close to her. I had a feeling that it was mutual. The feeling of the coldness of her hands took me back to the day of her passing. How shocked I was sitting by her bed caressing her cold hands as she passed away.  Silently and calm she drifted into another awareness. I needed this dream to give me healing. Everything must come to an end. My memory of the coldness of my mother as well. It is time for me to embrace her memory with all the warmth of my relatively healthy living body. I hope my book can help you interpret dreams about your loved ones more easily.

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Sherlock Holmes: how to solve the mystery your dream presents

“My name is Sherlock Holmes. It is my business to know what other people don’t know.”

Sherlock Holmes and his partner Watson solved numerous of crimes. They were awesome detectives. Their awesomeness originated from an irrefutable way of thinking and acting.

Sherlock Holmes


Conan Doyle, writer of Sherlock Holmes got people out of prison this way. A man called Oscar Slater was thrown in prison being accused of murdering Marian Gilchrist. She was the first lady ever to be a doctor but suffered a dreadful death: being beaten to death in a robbery when her maid had gone out for ten minutes.

Marian Gilchrist and Christian Slater

Oscar was accused because he left for London just five days after the murder. In prison, he wrote a letter to Conan Doyle asking his help.

Imagine that your dream is a letter, of some part of you being in prison. Now your dream gives you the opportunity to search for evidence. Is the imprisonment rightful?

In a dream I had after being in disagreement with a dear one, I saw this person reading in a green map that is in my bookshelf. When I, while awake, opened this map again to look at the content I discovered it were my medical notes on pain. That is when I knew that, no matter how right I felt in accusing this person, I was doing him wrong.

Elementary my dear Watson, sometimes a dream requires more detecitive work… A client of mine told me her dream:
I am in a jewelry store. I have my old necklace that my mother gave to me when she died. The shop owner does not look at me. I feel ignored. Then a blond beautiful lady walks in and says: “Hey. I am double parked so i am in a hurry. Could you please give me a price for my necklace? The Jeweler takes a look at the necklace and gives her three golden coins. The lady walks out and the dreamer is left alone”.

When I heard this dream I had to carefully test my hypothesis. Being double parked… A necklace that is not valued by a jeweler… I assumed she was recently divorced, or unhappy in her relationship. When I asked her about it she told me that she was single again after she discovered that her husband was having an affair.  Because the necklace that got neglected in her dream was owned by her mother once I asked her about her mother. What kind of relationship did they have? What did her mother tell her daughter about relationships? I encouraged her to incubate a dream about her mother.

Researching dreams the Holmes way:

Maria Konnikova unpacks the mental strategies that lead to clearer thinking and deeper insights.


  • Be aware of trivial things. For example: Sherlock knew 140 different types of cigarette ash, that came in handy when he found an ashtray at a murder scene.
    In dreams it is wise to list down all the symbols in your story, no matter how small, because it could be the key to unlocking the door to freedom.
  • When a appears, b must follow. Deduction is based on the assumption of causality. Gather as much evidence as you can (your list of dream symbols) and make deductions about all of them. For example: if you dream about an undervalued piece of family jewel hanging round your neck one assumption might be that one is not very happy about his or her current engagement.
  • Use Google to find out what colors, phrases or symbols mean and use them to re-interpret your dream story. I once dreamed about a one eyes old man wearing a hat and found out i had been dreaming about Odin.

This article I wrote earlier can give you more insights in how to interpret dreams. And this Mindfunda sheds some light on the perspective of the dream story by asking the questions: who is the storyteller?

The Apple tv: unlocking knowledge in a heartbeat

I am a fan of Apple. And I laughed just like you, about the ridiculous price tag on the Apple watch. BUT this watch will be able to monitor your health somewhere in the future Apple’s Tim Cook has promised.

My life changed for the better when we  got ourselves an apple tv. It is affordable, and I love it. Being an information addict, my life has changed dramatically in the past two decades.


The apple tv bundle

1. The Apple tv saves time

Having had over 20 years of education I taught myself to look at indexes, find out where the information was I needed to know, read it, analyse it and use it for my own benefit. No I have to admit that, getting older a book hardly ever catches my full attention. I know what I want to know, look for it and hardly ever take the time to read a book from A to Z.
Now I just easily search for a documentary, or a good YouTube instruction and play it on the Apple tv. There are Universities, BBC documentaries, all kinds of cool and instructive knowledge that you easily absorb.
Being the moderator of a Facebook group about Mythology I get a lot of information about ancient history and mythology from all over the world that is available on YouTube, Vimeo

2. The Apple tv gives you freedom

You do not need to stay at home at a certain point in time. You can watch what you like, whenever you like and you can make the choices your intellect craves for. Are you into the creation of the universe? There are SO many good films, documentaries and YouTube films about it that you can call yourself an expert in the subject in a short amount of time, if you choice wisely.

3. You will not be bothered by commercials

That is one of the things I like best. No more silly useless commercials. I always resented that.

4. You dive into knowledge

All you ever wanted to know and more about psychology using for example itunes university which is filled with classes you can follow for free;
science with Michael from Vsauce who goes into depth about any subject and always know how to surprise you,
mythology: on Netflix (you have to be a member of Netflix) you can watch the mystery files with documentaries about Joan of Arc, King Arthur, Alexander the Great. So you see that every aspect of Mindfunda: psychology, science and mythology are represented in the pool of knowledge to dive into. You will come out refreshed!

My husband and I have been loving this Apple television since we purchased it a year ago. It has been worth evey cent. If you want to buy one yourself plaese consider using the link in this blog, it will give Mindfunda a little kickback fee so we can continue our work: to make your life more easy by giving you the knowledge you need. A Mindfunda a day keeps the doctor away!






What does my dream mean?

Imagine this: you have a dream. An actual dream not a phantasy about how life could be. Now you want to know What does my dream mean?. This article will give you a head start.

What does my dream mean?

What does my dream mean?


First of all there are, in general, four ways of looking at a dream: dreams as “messages from the gods”, dreams as signs from the body, dreams as random neurological chit-chat from the brain and (my personal favorite) dreams as an invitation to get creative. I explore this subject into depth in this post.
If you look at the history of dream sharing and dream interpretation the first category was the most popular.

In “An Encyclopedia of Shamanism” Volume 1, Christina Prati shares with us: Traditionally, shamans and “grandmothers” were the respected specialists in dream interpretation and enactment. The most frequently consulted dream interpreters were the “grandmothers”, older women past menopause  who were respected faith keepers and clairvoyants. Traditionally, they might use scrying with water or fire to help divine and clarify the meaning of the dream”.

In the 20th century, Jung and Freud wanted to use  the “New divinity” that emerged scientific. They wanted to study the “divine messages” given in the dream and interpret them through scientific methods they emperically developed. Like the ancient grandmothers, they interpreted the dream for you. All you had to do was to relax on a sofa and listen to your doctor, who told answered for you the question: “what does my dream mean?”

Now it is very common to tell a dreamer that he/she is the only one that can interpret his own dream. I remember how disappointed I felt when a friend told me this. I had no clue how to start. Let me take you back in time again to explain how this “you are the only one that can explain your dream” originated from those therapist that told you what your dream meant. There was a lot of emancipation going on. The therapists of the old days were the authorities, but in the 70’s of last century much more people could attend college. And a lot of them became therapists. Now what is meant by: “you are the only one that can interpret your dreams?”

First: write down your dream. it will give you the opportunity to distance yourself from the story. A distance that you need to clearly analyse the story.
Second: write down all the symbols of your dream story. Everything that stands out, everything that does not stand out, everything that has emotion in it.
Step three: look at the list and write down the first thing that jumps in your mind.
Step four: re-write the dream with those associations and see what this story has to tell you.

This is just one way of looking at dreams. If you are ready for some advanced methods you can read this article. Of course I know there are a lot of other ways to look at dreams. I am not against looking in dream dictionaries. If a dream dictionary gives you another idea about a dream, then that is perfectly alright. Anything you do with a dream that enhances your creative thoughts, anything that gives you a different perspective on who you are and on what you can be is a gift. The gift of the dream.



What is Mindfunda about?

My name is Susanne van Doorn, I am a Dutch psychologist, blogger and author. I have been working with psychology, dreams and mythology ever since I finished my study in psychology at Tilburg University. I made this independant site to share insights, and recent scientific articles about the brain, dreams, and mythology for use in your personal life.

This posting is categorised as Dreamfunda:  
Everything you need to know about dreams. Practical How to’s, the latest scientific research, the most commonly used ways to attach meaning to dreams. This and more is given to you for your everyday use in this part of Mindfunda

Read more about Mindfunda here, or visit our Courses Page.

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