Chapter 11: Dreams of Undoing & Reversal

Themes that I have classified as undoing and reversal are prominent in approximately sixty-eight dreams in this collection. “Undoing” is a psychological defense closely related to denial – an attempt to negate a disapproved action by asserting the opposite, annulling one impulse with another. We encounter defensive gestures of undoing in adults when we hear someone make a cutting joke at our expense and then immediately assert: “Just kidding! You know I love you!” In young children we might see a child hit and then kiss a new sibling, or hit a classmate that they might wish to kiss. Gestures driven by defensive undoing simultaneously attempt to erase a disturbing action from external reality, and to ease our internal disruption after encountering the breakthrough into consciousness of a disruptive impulse.

Many instances of ritualistic behavior both in children and in adults contain elements which are explainable on this basis, that is they are consciously or unconsciously intended to undo the effect of some id impulse which the ego considers to be dangerous… One thing we can say is that the whole idea of undoing is a magical one and presumably has its origin in those early years of childhood when magical ideas predominate so much of mental life. ~ Charles Brenner, M.D., An Elementary Textbook of Psychoanalysis, p. 90 

I’d suggest that a collective national aggressive impulse was expressed by the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, which then activates dreams of impeachment, resignation, or an “act of God” as a kind of undoing, or magical reversal:

Dreamed a new law was put into effect immediately that enabled the GOP to rescind Trump’s nomination if he broke with agreements to the party or to his own staff.  Since this was already true, he was already not a candidate.  Scenes of staff rooms, newsrooms, campaign headquarters with everyone cheering, as after a successful NASA launch or as in the scene in “Ender’s Game” where Ender, thinking he’s been fighting a simulated battle, has actually saved the world. ~ Anonymous

Last night, I dreamed that Donald Trump had lost a snap Presidential Election to Al Gore, and that the papers were full of op-eds about the return to old-school, boring politics. It was sad to wake up and be back in the Apocalypse.[i]

But as the following dream suggests, magical undoing can’t fully eradicate the problem, entrenched aspects remain and destructive energies re-emerge:

I dream we have a wood burner and everyone is getting something for the fire in a kind of ritualistic way – my son (15) hands me a effigy of Trump that he made for the fire – stuffed with something, a cloth head added with orange felt tip hair, and a chrome bar as a post to give it a backbone. I am ambivalent about burning it, its a well made model, and the chrome won’t burn and the materials its made with might be toxic. However using it as an effigy to stick pins in will probably bring bad karma. ~Anonymous

Many dreamers imagine the undoing of this presidency in simple, clear terms:

I had a dream Trump got impeached.[ii]

Had a dream last night, walked downstairs and a family member said, “Here son, drink ye a beer. It’s official, today is a good day for America.” I ask why, and he says “Trump has been impeached!”[iii]

I had a dream during my 16 hour nap that Donald Trump got impeached and it was confusing to wake up and realize it never really happened[iv]

I literally had a dream last night that I was hosting a party and one of the guests came in and was like “everyone everyone, Donald Trump was fired” and it was the best dream I’ve ever had.[v]

just had a VERY nice dream that Trump was impeached and relentlessly shamed in headlines for being a failure[vi]

A reversal of events may restore a way life before the election, or substitute a preferred timeline for the future:

tell me why i had a dream that trump got impeached & obama came back[vii]

I had a dream this afternoon Dems took Congress in 2018 impeached Trump & Pence, Nancy assumed the Presidency appointed Hillary VP immediately resigned and HRC became President.[viii]

I had a dream that we kicked trump out of office and elected Michelle Obama and now I’m really sad that we still have to deal with this stupid moldy tangerine until 2020[ix] 

Some dream of our 45th president being ousted by military force:

I took a nap and dreamt that I was writing a parody “All I Want for Christmas is a Coup” where the only thing the singer wanted was the end of the Trump presidency.[x]

No joke: last night I dreamt there was a coup by members of Congress and trump was overthrown. I remember the last part where he was surrounded in the Oval Office, pacing & muttering “He’s a good man, he’s a good man…”[xi]

 Another twenty or so dream of Trump himself reversing the course of history, via voluntary resignation.

i had a dream donald trump just got tired and resigned[xii]

I had a strange dream last night that Donald Trump willingly stood down as President and gave it to Hilary Clinton instead, then they shook hands and for some reason, Barack Obama was there also celebrating. Not quite sure what my mind was thinking when this happened.[xiii]

Had a dream Donald Trump resign for health issues. The “stress” of his presidency was detrimental to his health. Woke up to see him tweeting more foolishness[xiv]

Had a dream last night that Trump resigned from the Presidency to “pursue other interests” and I’m wondering how to put that on my vision board.[xv]

Here, Trump’s resignation aligns with the cultivation of a more authentic self-image:

I dreamed Trump stepped down…and his hair was cut shorter and platinum grey.[xvi]

Others imagine that only greed or corruption could encourage him to resign.

i had a dream last night that liberals started a gofundme to pay trump a billion dollars to resign and it worked.[xvii]

I’ve just realised that I dreamt last night that I woke up to the news that Trump had resigned due to public exposure of a massive new side-scandal[xviii]

In some dreams he simply disappears as if by magic or the fulfillment of fairytale:

Aww last night I had a dream Trump went missing and now I’m kinda sad I’m awake[xix]

I had a dream that President Trump resigned. It was very vivid but even in my sleep, I didn’t believe it. I woke up and switched on the TV News and there it was – confirmed. wall to wall coverage. That was a dream, as well. A dream within a dream[xx]

I had a dream that Trump just woke up and decided to end his presidency, and then the whole world was happy and cheered. [xxi]

Many dream of dancing like joyful Munchkins after the destruction of the Wicked Witch.

I dreamed last night that I woke up & the news was reporting Trump was dead… people were dancing in the streets, it was like a huge spontaneous parade…. best dream ever…. [xxii]

I had a dream that Trump died and everyone came out of their houses with joyful tears in their eyes and strangers hugged each other and the literal sky played a Journey song.[xxiii]

Dreams of the president’s removal from office by death count for approximately thirty dreams in the collection. Many dream of death by natural causes and common medical conditions.

i had a dream trump had a heart attack and died[xxiv]

Last night I dreamt that Donald Trump had died in his sleep.[xxv]

 I had a dream that Trump had an aneurism during a congressional meeting and nobody ran over to help him[xxvi]

Shoot, I had a dream that trump died of old age and now I’m awake[xxvii]

 

Others envision his ultimate undoing by acts of God, or Mother Nature:

I had a dream that the White House was buried in pounds of snow n that was the cause of death of trump[xxviii]

Had a dream last night. While L’orange Trump was in Cali a tiny Earthquake happened under his feet only and Mother Earth swallowed him up[xxix]

i had a dream that trump got bit by a funnel web spider and died[xxx]

The funnel web spider, by the way, is among the most deadly spiders, and spins extraordinarily complex webs – perhaps this dream suggest that the president is “undone” and poisoned in a web of lies. Several other dreams also evoke a sense of “karmic” comeuppance or death by deadly sin:

Oh I had a dream that Donald Trump died choking on a piece of burnt steak[xxxi]

Had a dream that all the Trump “children” were strangled an eaten by angry elephants.[xxxii]

 I had a dream that Donald trump died from heart failure due to his physical health and that he died in a charter bus with a basket of nachos fries in his hand[xxxiii]

I had a dream that Trump died bc he drank some bad wine & went swimming & no one really cared tbh.[xxxiv]

 

And as psychoanalysts know, to be caught in the obsessive chain of undoing can entrap us in a continuous cycle, an ever widening circle,  of feeling that we have done something wrong while “always trying to put something right.” As psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott describes: “The patient absurdly claims responsibility for the entire general disaster but in doing so avoids their personal destructiveness”( ~ D. W. Winnicott, The Sense of Guilt)

I dreamed that a drunk driver killed Trump by ramming him with his car and knocking him off a kind of parapet. I was a bartender in the dream, and had kicked the drunk driver out of my bar because he was behaving belligerently toward the other customers. This made me feel responsible for Trump’s death, and the dream ended with me leaving town in an attempt to evade the FBI, who I assumed were coming for me. ~ Anonymous

 

 

[i] @stuartgarlick

[ii] @JayyBabyMinaj

[iii] @maggardo

[iv] @ballin4stalin

[v] @acciofireball

[vi] @eksyneet

[vii] @cierradenee

[viii] @dachguy2

[ix] @HannahMcCombs

[x] @involuntaryorng

[xi] @CarrieG65

[xii] @madamebruja

[xiii] @ShakeyJake25

[xiv] @FindinDoriee

[xv] @kfleminem

[xvi] @FLWhitehorn

[xvii] @historyinflicks

[xviii] @Sallyapiacere

[xix] @samanthadorla

[xx] @RuariJM

[xxi] @funmango8589

[xxii] @ProfessorTori1

[xxiii] @emilyrschmidt

[xxiv] @ribaribe

[xxv] @ThatsJustBogus

[xxvi] @kcarmichael27

[xxvii] @JsonUlrich

[xxviii] @eillebb

[xxix] @LJMISSMJ

[xxx] @watery_day

[xxxi] @CPowell8528

[xxxii] @Davthecreativ

[xxxiii] @SydneyRaye497

[xxxiv] @basically_anika

 

Chapter 10: Propaganda, Double Speak and Surveillance

“To find mass communications emerging to play a role in these dreams seemed in itself significant. Propaganda occupies a separate sphere in the totalitarian world, and the Hitler regime was the first of its kind to manipulate public opinion by making full use of these technical accomplices, in the same way it made use of its functionaries. Propaganda was well as it functionaries had acquired an autonomous quality in this official’s dreams becoming true apparitions of a new order.” ~ Charlotte Beradt, The Third Reich of Dreams, p 40

Approximately ninety-two dreams in this collection appear to be pre-occupied with themes relating to propaganda, double-speak/fake news, re-education and the effects of surveillance. The Oxford English Dictionary defines propaganda as “the systemic propagation of information or ideas by an interested party, especially in a tendentious way, in order to encourage or instill a particular attitude or response.” The relentless dissemination of falsehood seems to hope to instill the general public with a core doubt in their own ability to discern lies from truth, reality from spin. The daily communications out of the White House create an upside-down world – where we are told to no longer even believe our own eyes and ears, let alone journalists, scholars, or experts in any field. This message has been consistent since the disturbing Republican national convention which confirmed Trump’s nomination: “ I Alone Can Fix It” encouraging the population to abdicate all discernment and efficacy to the president.

But the details are less important than the facts that all forms of propaganda to which these people were exposed by day were absorbed into their dreams and re-emerged as dream motifs in their own right, there to fulfill a function not unlike Huxley’s sleep-teaching device which, installed beneath the pillow, transmitted the prescribed line. ~ Third Reich of Dreams, p. 41

We dream of a world where we have come to doubt our own thoughts, experiences and words:

One time I had a dream trump slapped me across the face and I yelled “you hit me?!” And he immediately said “no I didn’t.”[i]

I had a dream about Trump the other night. He asked me to give a speech but the speech writer sabotaged it and had me looking stupid on live TV.[ii]

had a dream the trump admin brought back the draft but called it “war try-outs”[iii]

I know a lot of dreams don’t make sense, but last night I dreamt that Trump & I were arguing in a supermarket, screaming & cursing at each other, I was defending Trump, & Trump was bashing Trump. My subconscious is almost as confused as my regular conscious.[iv]

Not only do we dream of confusional reality-negating messages, we also dream of the methods and machinery used to keep us surrounded:

Had a dream I was touring the White House, and in every single room (including each bathroom) speakers were blasting songs covered by Trump. Not unlikely, actually[v].

I had a dream last night the government and trump were sending signals in the sky saying they’re going to bomb the whole United States. WHAT THE FUCK WHY?![vi]

I’ve been randomly laughing for the past few days over this bizarre dream I had. Donald Trump had decided that to be a WELL respected president, he had to come up with a really good Public Service Announcement. The result, was an advert featuring a group of people dressed as human organs, led by a pancreas, walking in slow motion all cool and stuff down a wide corridor while the altered Eagles lyric “warm smell of Colitis, rising up through the air” played. Suddenly everyone – Democrats included – was praising Trump for calling attention to a tragic disease that affects millions, while I was the only one screaming “THAT DOESN’T EVEN MAKE ANY SENSE!!!”[vii]

I had a dream that Donald Trump was secretly passing you messages by putting emojis in my refrigerator[viii]

Many dreams depict Orwellian scenarios of being entangled and entrapped by double-speak and fake news.

Had a weird dream last night that I was out to dinner with a few people and one of them was Trump and he wouldnt stop talking nonsense and I was never allowed leave the restaurant.[ix]

A client tells me she dreampt that the News announced that All that Trump has said is True. Crikes[x]

Beradt discusses the way that propagandist messages operate like a virus, transforming those exposed into transmitters of the distorted message:

This propaganda bound as it was by neither legal or moral principals, was capable of almost anything. It could produce the events it fed on. As suggested here, it could also worm its way deep into the innermost spheres of the people to whom it was directed, there to subtly obliterate the distinction between propagandist and his victim, turning suggestion into autosuggestion. The Third Reich of Dreams, p. 75 

Certainly the way that “fake news” disseminates itself through “viral” social media expands this phenomena to the present. Some dreamers are fearful that they will themselves become coerced or spellbound propagandists themselves. 

I had a dream that I landed a KILLER job, like once in a lifetime kinda job, & on my first day they told me that I had to say, “Trump is the best thing that’s ever happened to America” or I’d instantly be fired. I had such an intense panic attack in my dream that I woke up[xi]

i had a vivid dream the other night about Donald trump somehow brainwashing ppl through a stage show/play/movie thing to eat everything and think everything was a sweet/candy? and ppl died bc they were eating furniture etc? it was very odd[xii]

Some dream of being taken in by fake news and false promises before coming to their senses, some feel bewildered by nonsense, while other’s recognize and reject the deceit from the outset.

I had a dream Donald Trump gave me a million dollars, but they were all fake[xiii]

Had a dream that we won a Trump-brand cruise to Italy and when we got there, we realized they’d driven us in circles and dropped us off at an Italian restaurant down the California coast, and I turned to Blake and sighed, “I don’t actually know what I expected”[xiv]

Last light i had a dream that Donald Trump was yelling at me and all i could understand him say was “okey?” And when i said I couldn’t understand he just started talking over me.[xv]

I literally, seriously, had a dream last night that Trump started announcing Fake News awards and was booed off the stage.[xvi]

Many dreamers find themselves back in school, undergoing political re-education, and trying to see through and withstand the thinly disguised agenda:

Last night I had a dream where Donald Trump was my Physics teacher but he had to disguise himself with a fake orange soul patch[xvii]

Some struggle to the point of suffering against the rewritten teachings:

I had a dream that a guest speaker for my therapy class was Donald Trump and he was teaching us the rights of a woman’s body. It was fucking torturous[xviii].

No one was murdered in my dream last night but it was very close. I was choosing between two unis but the better one had Trump as headteacher and he wouldn’t let me study feminism because he said feminists are witches[xix]

While other dreams express ambivalence – both surrendering (kneeling) and resisting:

had a dream last night that trump was my math teacher and everyone kneeled and threw shit at him[xx]  

The following dream explores the attempts to purchase of public approval– pork in exchange for political support:

So I had a dream trump was my social studies teacher and at the end of every class, he gave us all fucking PORKCHOPS to take home to our families. I woke up loving him, I then remembered it was a dream trump was literally just a teacher in my dream[xxi]

Our collective thoughts on social studies, science, economics, religion, are being restructured:

i had a dream that trump taught my bible study class[xxii]

Had a big complex dream but all I remember now is that Trump was teaching me how to answer exponential decay questions[xxiii]

Had a dream where my economics professor was donny Trump and we got into a fight about equal pay and the classroom was just a conference table[xxiv]

Had a dream Donald Trump was my science teacher and disqualified me from the science fair.[xxv]

These next dreams seem to be representing re-education at the most fundamental level – restructuring the essential elements of thought.

i had a dream that donald trump was my teacher and he was teaching us the alphabet[xxvi]

There are two parts of the dream that I remember. One being that it was required that every child in America had to take a class in school about Trump. But like the class was designed by Trump himself. His “philosophy” on life. Omg ew brb gagging[xxvii]

Some find Trump assuming this role to be depressing, others experience it as stimulating.

I had a dream last night that Donald Trump was the headteacher at my old primary school, he had basically sucked all life out of the kids like a dementor..[xxviii]

Had a FANTASTIC dream where Donald trump was a college professor of a class I was taking and he was teaching us about cocaine. Everybody in the class got a big dose to experiment with. I got a glass full of sweet tasting cocaine and I ate it (don’t think that’s how you do it[xxix]

Some dream students are boldly defiant:

had a dream last night that trump visited my school and literally every single poc ganged up on him until he left, i love it.[xxx]

 I had a dream that Donald Trump was my English teacher and I was failing the class because every time we got an essay assignment I would write “This Man Is Horrible” all over the fuckin paper[xxxi]

 Well it happened. I had a trump dream…where I was in a poetry class….taught by him…it ended in yelling…[xxxii]

 Let me see if I can tweet out this weird dream I had last night… Donald Trump was my school’s principle. He was sitting in for my class, and suddenly he saw one of the kids drawing a picture of a tampon. He told the kid (which was this random guy from my high school) that it was inappropriate. The kid told him it was for research and fought him back. Trump grabbed him and dragged him out to his office, and I tried to stop him. They left, so I went to “the bathroom” to check up on them. At the office, Trump was explaining to his advisors what happened. They all listened to him silently, until one of them said, “This has gone too far, Trump.” And then the rest of the advisors piped up too that this was ridiculous, and Trump went BEET RED. Like cartoon level. And the he went on a RAMPAGE and destroyed his carriage outside (which I guess was his ride). The school board fired him, and everyone celebrated. Since the school principle was fired, the graduating students’ diploma that year became all invalid and they had to request for a new one. The end.[xxxiii]

 I had a dream trump visited my school or something (memory is fading) and at first I was like ‘let’s be normal’ and then by the end of the dream I’m yelling so loud that my brain incorporated my irl sore throat In the dream lol[xxxiv]

 

Some are confused and others simply accept and defer to Trump as an educational authority figure.

 I had a dream last night that my Chem II class went on a field trip to the White House and there was no purpose to this field trip other than for us to hang out with Donald Trump [xxxv]

 i had a dream donald trump made me go back to 6th grade smh[xxxvi]

 I had a dream that Donald trump was my teacher and he made me vacuum the classroom which was for some reason carpeted[xxxvii]

 Had a dream I was playing football in my backyard .. with president trump as my head coach[xxxviii]

today i had a dream about trump coming to my school and me and my brother went out of our way to show him some really sick secret handshakes, whats this mean twitter[xxxix]

Strangely, in an era where our every move and thought are documented with our half-conscious consent and active participation – in an era when we are far more profoundly surveilled than could ever have been dreamed of in the Germany of the 1930’s, only about twenty dreams concerned themselves with being monitored. Americans seem to consider our devices as an opportunity to broadcast our opinions rather than silence ourselves. We voluntarily scream our thoughts into the monitoring devices we carry with us everywhere.

Beradt notes the terrorized and silencing effect such perceived surveillance had on her community:

“Simply everything we have ever thought or said among ourselves is known.” What dream could better suit the purposes of a totalitarian regime? The Third Reich was not able to install such devices in the homes of every single person, but it could certainly profit from the fear it had implanted in the hearts of all those people who then began to terrorize themselves, turning themselves unawares into voluntary participants in this systematic terrorization… p. 48

And although collectively we seem to only be able to sustain partial-consciousness about the degree to which we are monitored – these dreams demonstrate that we experience the eradication of individual privacy as a grave threat and a dangerous method of social control, a la Bentham’s panopticon.

You will please to observe, that though perhaps it is the most important point, that the persons to be inspected should always feel themselves as if under inspection, at least as standing a great chance to be so… Jeremy Bentham, The Panopticon Writings, p. 43

Shortly after I launched this project I received this chilling dream reminding me that in publicizing this project was a self-exposure that could have dangerous and distorting consequences:

How interesting: the day after you put out your request for Trump dreams, I had a dream about YOU & Donald Trump. You had sent out a mailing, some political appeal or an effort to raise funds for your business or cause. In your ask, you had listed the outrageous expenses of your organization—as part of your appeal to sanity (& for needed money). Specifically, you noted in a bullet point that a stapler cost $22M. In this dream fragment, I remember that your mailing came back, with that figure circled in red, & a note: “$22M for a stapler? That’s too much. Not possible! -DT” (There was some explanation too of the algorithm supposedly proving that you had made it up.) So that note, overlaid on your own letter was signed by Trump—his initials. Somehow your mailer had been turned into another mailer, because the fake script writing over your own letter was mass-produced—printed onto it. You were outraged, you said: “You see this!? I will not have Donald Trump going through my mail!!” ~ Anonymous

Some seem to have conscious awareness of the risks and reject fear as a viable response.

Dreamed I was watching my buddy Keanu Reeves fronting a band in a small venue, when Donald and Melania arrived, and had shitty seats. He seemed kind of sad, and I felt almost guilty for not liking him. Donald kept dropping my name – which I hadn’t told him- both to impress Keanu and to let me know I was being surveilled. I didn’t care and decided I would not be controlled by that. ~ Anonymous

Some seem to process this reality by turning the tables:

my therapist had a dream someone stuck a drone on trump and I’ve never loved someone more than her[xl] 

Others seem confused, surprised, or horrified by the message from their psyche, as in this dream of being “bugged.”

Had a fucking dream tonight that I told Trump to go fuck himself in the oval office and he put bugs? In my hair? And I had to raid a procuts warehouse for special shampoo to get them out lmao[xli]

Beradt writes:

Here we see a person in the process of being fashioned by a very elusive and even today not fully understood form of terrorization, a terrorization that consisted not of any constant surveillance over millions of people, but rather of the sheer uncertainty about how complete this surveillance was. P. 47

Most panopticon dreams in this collection reveal a deep fear of punishment and reprisal. One has to wonder how this effects these dreamers in their willingness to speak out or in their decisions to protect themselves and self-silence.

I had a dream I was on the news and talked shit about trump and a hour later my phone got hacked by trump and it was a gif of him laughing on my phone.[xlii]

I just had a dream where Trump was a ghost and was haunting me. I woke up in a cold sweat, realizing that he truly haunts all of us.[xliii]

The use of hacking, doxing, trolling and online harassment and threats as a political weapon penetrate into the nightmares of several dreamers:

Had a dream (or nightmare depending on your persuasion) I met Donald Trump 😂 and then he tweeted out my Twitter handle and I had loads of Americans calling me a whore. What does it mean? [xliv]

yo i had a dream about Donald Trump and i’m not gonna go into details ….. but in my dream THE WHITE HOUSE SENT ME A SCREENSHOT OF MY LOCATION TO MY FUCKING PHONE[xlv] 

last night I had a dream that I was calling Trump out on his bullshit and he said he wanted to put a tracker on me and that he was gonna watch where I was on the snapchat map[xlvi]

 Had a dream that my brother and I had red dots on us from snipers because we were talking about how against all this trump BS we are.[xlvii]

 Had a dream trump was tweeting about abortion and accidentally included the wrong image and it was a map showing my house[xlviii]

The following dream reminds us that with satellite technology the entire planet is a panopticon – surveillance is used to monitor anyone for any political end.

I had a dream Trump was mad NASA wouldn’t turn the Hubble Telescope around to spy on immigrants and when I woke up I was like “Did that really happen?” because it’s the sort of thing Trump would do[xlix]

A dream which depicts the complete erasure of all personal privacy:

I dreamed that for some reason I was at Trump’s house and I had to go to the bathroom but there was a camera in there looking at the toilet and it didn’t surprise me in the dream or now that I’m awake lol[l]

And the ultimate goal of political surveillance, dreams of free speech stifled.

Had a dream I lived with… trump. Trump kept asking me to break into Alan’s computer to learn “what those journalists know[li]

I had a dream last night that I swore too much on twitter and Donald Trump suspended my account.[lii]

Just had a dream (nightmare) that I had to pay $200 after saying something mean about Trump supporters on Twitter.[liii]

 

 

[i] @KIRSTIN_exe

[ii] @Cuz_iCan

[iii] @despoondent

[iv] @Livingstone2001

[v] @TaraSkurtu

[vi] @kylamorrison_

[vii] @Tek_Roo

[viii] @kebabdylan

[ix] @Flipendo_Orb

[x] @BellMacdonald2

[xi] @saraajean_

[xii] @parkjiminsmiles

[xiii] @yohannacortes

[xiv] @seenohwell

[xv] @mikalabartson

[xvi] @ChasLo

[xvii] @KressentRolls

[xviii] @savannahrelyn

[xix] @JenneTheGreat

[xx] @faithisbailey

[xxi] @chrisf91

[xxii] @KiwiCasstle

[xxiii] @mmoitie

[xxiv] @realCarolineCon

[xxv] @hancatmcc

[xxvi] @maddieh1997

[xxvii] @heyitstayyyyy

[xxviii] @_naomirosser

[xxix] @cabrasleeps

[xxx] @madisonIray

[xxxi] @elizabethl202

[xxxii] @ericdoesvoices

[xxxiii] @annieyamaya

[xxxiv] @Selena4ever19

[xxxv] @Madddddison21

[xxxvi] @julesiaa

[xxxvii] @yoshicasserole

[xxxviii] @Slim_Chaney

[xxxix] @wrenchdee

[xl] @kaludiasays

[xli] @ja_soldat

[xlii] @qetcetera

[xliii] @ClaireDunderman

[xliv] @Siobhan_yercoat

[xlv] @_mackiee

[xlvi] @princessleahh92

[xlvii] @I_acheta

[xlviii] @spindlypete

[xlix] @HyperbolicTelly

[l] @Munnin78

[li] @padrock

[lii] @kelsadilla_11

[liii] @notanimedad

Chapter 9: Dreams of Psychopathy and Violated Norms

Civil norms were violated quickly, early and often in the election and during the first year that Trump held office: Name-calling, lying, gas-lighting, explicit racism and misogyny, religious travel bans, threats of nuclear war via social media – Americans quickly learned how fragile their national protocols for conduct and ethics were. What had been taken for granted as normal and expectable civic behavior disappeared in a whirlwind of chaos and aggression:

I had a dream that I met Trump and he threw change at me[i]

It felt like each day something new and flabbergasting was thrown at us. Everything changed. Change was hurled at us all, and culturally established taboos of morality and taste were thrown out the window.

Rumors emerged of violated taboos around sexuality and toileting, and many dreamers seemed to attach to the symbolic implications of shattered norms as represented by the alleged “pee tape” Dreams of being peed on, wet pants, peeing on others, or public urination swirled through the minds of several dreamers. 

I had a dream last night that trump passed a law saying we all had to pee in the top of the toilet[ii] 

I had a strange dream where Donald Trump was hosting some public event as President on TV and he stopped midway to go pee, but didn’t realize the overhead camera watched him peeing and it was broadcast live to the world.[iii]

i had a dream i was at a hotel in the reception and donald trump came charging in looking like a hot mess, climbed up the stairs and then peed on everybody[iv]

had a dream that donald trump visited my house and he got pee on the toilet seat and didn’t clean it up[v]

I had a dream last night that I was having dinner with President Trump and his staff at a restaurant, and in the middle of the dinner the president peed his pants. There was pee all over his clothes…[vi]

 Last night I had a dream Trump was pissing on my car and I was detained for trying to stop him with a spray bottle[vii]

And although in many social circles Trump’s purported sexual kink, or pee fantasies were considered trivial and humorous – dreamers conjured much deeper conflicts and concerns about the president’s unilateral disregard for basic norms and the willingness to violate culturally determined moral taboos. Gaining dominance and pleasure by violating core cultural moral taboos are behaviors that are common to psychopathic personalities, and many dreamers wrestled with immoral impulses symbolized by Donald Trump.

Guggenbühl-Craig, in his book The Emptied Soul, proposes that psychopathy is a universal archetype, instinctive destructive energies, power-driven, anti-social tendencies that are present in each one of us, in some form, to a greater or lesser degree:

One is inclined to ask how, in a democratic country, we may prevent psychopaths from inveigling their way to the top… It seems to me more important that the people be able to see through a psychopath, to see through their own psychopathic side. In most democracies this is ability is well enough developed so that a dangerous psychopath is usually detected when he or she appears on the scene. ~ Adolf Guggehbühl-Craig, The Emptied Soul

 In the aftermath of World War 2, Carl Jung wrote about the interaction between a national leader who appears to manifest and exploit the most dangerous unacknowledged shadow-aspects of an entire nation:

“…he symbolized something in every individual. He was the most prodigious personification of all human inferiorities. He was an utterly incapable, unadapted, irresponsible, psychopathic personality, full of empty, infantile fantasies, but cursed with the keen intuition of a rat or a guttersnipe. He represented the shadow, the inferior part of everybody’s personality, in an overwhelming degree, and this was another reason that they fell for him. C. G. Jung, CW 10, para 454

Here we see a dream of psychopathic cruelty wearing the hat of an iconic, mythic white American “warrior-hero:

He was walking north up Fifth Avenue with a sub-machine gun, shooting everyone. Rocking a Davy Crockett fur hat… ~Anonymous

Many dreams, eighty or so in this dream collection, appear to struggle with the inner and outer manifestations of this anti-social archetype – in dreams which focus on violated taboos and norms, criminal acts and other psychopathic symbols and characteristics.

He cheats, deserts, annoys, brawls, fails and lies without any apparent compunction. He will commit theft, forgery, adultery, fraud, and other deed for astonishingly small stakes and under much greater risks of being discovered than will the ordinary scoundrel. He will in fact, commit such deeds in the absence of any apparent goal at all. ~ Hervey Cleckly, The Mask of Sanity, p. 390

And just as Cleckly describes, in his seminal book on psychopathy in our dreams the president cheats:

Since Sept 2016, I’ve had a recurring/continuing dream that Pete Rose won the 2016 election. At first, the dreams seemed funny, but I think it was my brain cluing me into the very real possibility that DJT could win. ~ Anonymous

My dream last night had Trump loading up a Toyota pickup truck with ballots he had collected from polling places as he said, “I’ll take this batch over… I’ll meet you there…”[viii]

Dreamed last night that I was golfing with Trump and he just could not keep the ball inbounds. Like 90% of it was him taking illegal drops. And then we had to let a group play through and he made a ruckus during everyone’s backswing so no one would embarrass him with a good shot[ix]

So last night I had a dream Trump went door to door and offered to pay me to vote for him in 2020. I said I would if he told me about the Russians. He ran away.[x]

So I had a dream that me and Stone Cold Steve Austin participated in a motor cross tournament. Half way through the race Donald Trump shows up and wins (he cheated obviously) and the crowd started throwing heads of cabbage at him from the taco stand.[xi]

He annoys:

I had a dream the other night about Trump taking us back to the pre-Gregorian calendar just to screw with people.[xii]

I had a dream last night where I had to give Trump a ride. He lit up a cigar. I told him you can’t do that, then I woke up[xiii]

He brawls:

I had a dream that Trump and George Washington got in a fist fight and then they pulled out samurai swords and I’m very upset that I woke up[xiv].

I had a dream that Donald Trump punched a reporter in the face on national TV and the reporter punched him back and Trump was bleeding everywhere and we were all like, “Welp! Just another day in America, I guess!”[xv]

And lies without any compunction:

I had a dream that the Trump administration made up some scandal about Obama so that we would all stop loving him and then I woke up confused bc I can’t say for sure that’s something our current President wouldn’t do. It was weird bc he planted evidence so everyone believed it and our communities were devastated. They declared a state of emergency. People were out in the streets weeping lol. I was apparently the only one who knew the government made it up[xvi].

Dream-Trump commits theft –

My husband woke up this morning and told me he dreamt Trump et al were taken down in the biggest money laundering scene ever uncovered.[xvii]

i had a dream that donald trump had brown hair and tried stealing my car?[xviii]

4YO “I dreamed last night that a bad guy stole all the blueberry muffins. He was like Donald Trump but a LOT nicer”.[xix]

 Had a dream I was meeting w/ pres trump and was like “cool. I’ll be able to judge for myself if he’s an idiot.” In my dream he wasn’t an idiot, but after leaving the oval office, I noticed he had stolen my wallet[xx]

 I had a dream about seven months ago Trump was in the Oval Office talking to two or three other people and he said “Did we get the Bitcoin money?” I woke up right then really anxious, like holy shit. I’ll never forget it. It was very real.[xxi]

He commits adultery –

I had a dream the police forced Donald Trump to resign because he broke the law by cheating on his wife. Which is actually a law in the south. It was a good dream[xxii]

As well as fraud, and any other anti-social deed –

It’s bad that I had to think really hard this morning whether my dream that Mueller was now investigating Trump’s involvement in a heart-and-lung transplant scandal (selling access to them) was real……. It’s not, right?[xxiii]

I had a dream last night – @LindseyGrahamSC was finally overcome w guilt & remorse & spilled his guts live on CNN. He admitted he was being blackmailed over his hacked emails, naming everyone from trump down. [xxiv]

I had a dream last night that Melania split up with trump because she was lesbian so he married his daughter[xxv].

And in our dreams he is not only discovered, in fact, our dream-wishes seem to focus on arresting Trump’s destructive behavior – expressing a desire to see him held legally accountable – although there is sometimes a sense of futility as the dreamer is lucid enough to see that such dream-wishes do not necessarily make things come true.

Picture Donald Trump, in the back of a pickup truck, being detained and questioned by officials. (I think I like the way my mind works when I dream!) He was on his way to an event, perhaps. I don’t know why he had been walking down the sidewalk or street instead of riding in his motorcade. He hadn’t alerted the local officials that he’d be in the area. He didn’t think he needed to tell anyone his business. He was cocky and arrogant. He’s the President of the United States… more importantly he’s Donald Trump. He doesn’t have to tell anyone anything. He’s above the law, above rules and regulations, above common sense and courtesy. The local officials weren’t having any of it. They were determined to verify he was who he said he was and his reasons for being there. They weren’t taking his word for it. They weren’t succumbing to his bullying. The dream was brief and it ended there. I saw it as if I was driving by in slow-moving traffic but was able to catch the gist of what was happening. Even though the dream contained an act by local officials of standing up to Trump, I didn’t feel elated or gleeful or vindicated -in the dream or when I woke or now. I felt and feel numb, sad, mournful, stunned. The fact that the episode was happening at all overshadowed the fact that Trump was being held accountable.~ Anonymous

 Had a vivid dream last night. I dreamed Donald Trump was being led out of the White House with his arms cuffed behind his back by federal agents. This is not a joke. I literally dreamt this[xxvi].

I had a dream that Trump was arrested for drunk driving and driving a multi-axle rig without the proper certification because he decided he wanted to personally move some nuclear warheads to a launching site.[xxvii]

I dreamt Ivanka and Melania Trump singing the Cell Block Tango from the musical Chicago[xxviii]

Last night I had a dream that Trump asked me if I’d take over the presidency for a couple of weeks so he could go on vacation. I did and immediately had him arrested.[xxix]

Another cluster of dreams focus less on anti-social behavior, and more on the horror of glimpsing the psychopathic soul. Cleckly details the “absolute” incapacity of psychopathic personalities to feel empathy or love for others – as a “self-centeredness that is apparently unmodifiable and all but complete.”

I had a interesting dream where the phantom thieves were stealing the heart treasure of Trump…[xxx]

Fairy tales and myths often spin tales of “cold” psychopathic evil, and offer mythological instructions to defeat giants with buried hearts, and the ways we experience such “heartlessness” as supernatural or monstrous. Dreams of the psychopathically distorted soul read like quick cut previews of horror films.

 i had a dream trump was being eaten alive from the inside by mutant butterflies. i just stood there watching, detached[xxxi].

“Psyche” meaning, soul, spirit or the animating principal was represented in Greek mythology by the butterfly. In this dream, drawing on collective and mythological images, paints Trump as a symbol of a distorted, decomposing soul.

Guggenbühl-Craig relies metaphors of emptiness, lack, psychic “holes” and hollowness of soul to describe the psychopathic archetype in his writing on psychopathy – and this dream summons similar imagery:

My dream was less about the president and more on the Vice President. It was just before he announced that he was running with Donald Trump. The dream consisted of him standing there with black holes for eyes and a gaping maw where his mouth was meant to be. It was horrifying. I felt like he was coming for me. ~Anonymous 

And the existential horror of the archetype of inhuman-humanity seems to feed upon itself: 

…once i dreamt trump was a cannibalistic rapist/serial killer who tore open his own head to reveal another identical trump inside[xxxii]

Other dreams frame psychopathy as evocative of demonic possession. In the dream below – the president is depicted as the possessing demon named “Killer Bob” – who takes over the souls of various characters in the television show “Twin Peaks” – in order feed off of the suffering of others:

What does it mean if you wake up fully from a deep, deep sleep after having dreamt that Trump is revealed to be Bob from Twin Peaks and then he murders you slowly with a tiny knife[xxxiii]

Others dream of Trump as the archetypal embodiment of evil, the Devil himself:

This is funny! I had a dream that my Mom (may she Rest In Peace) told me that Trump was the devil! [xxxiv]

The #DonaldTrumpDreamDiary (Day 3): Last night I dreamed @realDonaldTrump was eulogizing #StephenHawkings when Trump suddenly disappeared into an alternative universe, leaving nothing behind but the smell of sulfur.[xxxv]

I had a dream where Trump was at a gala with Melania, they were about to hold each other’s hand to walk and Trump ripped his face/clothes off and he actually had a costume of the devil underneath. He started dancing (without Melania who was starring at him like the entire world through tv like wtf) and then he took off his mask and just laughed saying “just kidding”.[xxxvi]

I had a dream last night NO JOKE that Donald trump was a fly in my bathroom and it died and I was like “mum lol guess the devil isn’t coming on Friday 13th anymore”[xxxvii]

Charlotte Beradt reports a German dream with a similar theme:

I was sitting in a box at the opera, dressed in a new gown, and with my hair beautifully done. It was a huge opera with many many tiers, and I was enjoying considerable admiration. They were presenting my favorite opera, The Magic Flute. When it came to the line, “That is the devil certainly,” a squad of policemen came stomping in and marched directly up to me. A machine had registered the fact I had thought of Hitler on hearing the word “devil”… (The Third Reich of Dreams, p. 25)

Beradt recounts that the dreamer then searches the vast audience for an ally or assistance and is either spat upon or met with blanks stares of the terrified or already possessed.

Intentionally hurting or torturing animals is a symptomatic alarm signal that is strongly associated with the sadistic aspects of psychopathy. Dreams of harm to innocent animals, seems to speak not only of sadism but of damaging environmental policies and the president’s support of the NRA and big game hunting. 

Woke up from a nightmare that Trump personally shot and and killed the last three Northern White Rhinos. Still had to check the internet to make sure it wasn’t just a dream.[xxxviii]

Had a dream Trump kept exotic pets in ill conditions and his children tried to take care of them but he forbade them. Once he was booted out of office the animals were seized and taken to sanctuaries. But his croc ate his monkey because it was starved.[xxxix]

…Last night, I dreamed I was back in math class, and the teacher brought in a therapy elephant, and then Trump walked in and shot it.[xl]

I had a dream that Trump murdered a puppy in front of me & if that doesn’t tell you what I think about his character, I don’t know what will[xli]

I dreamed that Trump killed the red-tailed hawk that lives near my back yard.[xlii]

I had a dream that I had a cat, and Donald Trump started petting the cat, and I was SO afraid he was going to hurt it. Then he turned around and drop-kicked a stuffed animal dog. I asked him, “Do you have anything you love?” He just looked at me and shook his head. [xliii]

I had a dream where I went on a heist to save a ton of kittens from Trump and stole a stack of litter boxes, got caught but they let me go[xliv]

Perhaps such dreams also speak to the aspects of Trump’s public image, or aspects of the dreamer themselves which are experienced by the dreamer as unnatural, against human nature, or alien in some way. The a group of about twenty dreams articulate this “alien” theme explicitly:

I dreamt that aliens put trump in power to outrage people enough that it would wake up the apathetic and change the course of history by endorsing people so they would lose[xlv]

Had a dream that Trump was tweeting on air force one that when he landed he had a big surprise for America. I was starting to feel bad for him. Suddenly huge alien ships came out of the sky and blew us all up. That was the surprise.[xlvi]

I had a dream that some kind of “space package” came down to Earth & the items in the package proved Trump was from another planet & he was trying to eventually have mankind enslaved. Lol. Then the people at the end rose up, picked Trump & others up, and locked them in jail.[xlvii]

Twitter feed/reality is fucking me up. I had a nightmare the republicans were working with aliens who could mind control people, and would murder anyone it didn’t work on. Eventually the aliens planned to kill their republican ‘partners’, too.[xlviii]

Last night my friend had a dream Donald J. Trump was acting so bizarre people started demanding he produce his Earth certificate.[xlix]

Last night j had a dream where trump, his family, supporters, and anybody associated with him got sent to another planet and Barack Obama was president again.[l]

I weirdly had a dream about this couple days before I heard about a gov shutdown. Don’t worry. It’s unearthed Trump is an alien after the gov is shut down. We all rise up in anger, the last straw, & we literally pick him up & throw him/others in jail. We all rejoice, sing songs.[li]

It is also interesting to consider to what degree dreamers are manifesting their associations to Trump as “alien” defined not only as from another planet – but in alien defined as loyalty and political allegiance to a foreign government.

Certainly these dreams of violated norms depict the ways that dreamers feel assaulted, attacked, possessed, infiltrated, invaded, and dominated by the Trump administration. Our next chapter will explore how dreamers respond to the disseminated doctrine of Trumpism.

 

_______________

[i] @WhiteWickWoss

[ii] @memslytoddsly

[iii] @tonyheyl

[iv] @trillestjb

[v] @horrendoustitty

[vi] @ArtistX62

[vii] @allyourdata

[viii] @DickMills

[ix] @Lucas_A_Hubbard

[x] @SMACK64

[xi] @bubba1505

[xii] @bookappreciator

[xiii] @jjschach

[xiv] @jayjayhandcock

[xv] @hankgreen

[xvi] @I_go_by_Mandy

[xvii] @ShazamABlama

[xviii] @jessiehartnell

[xix] @SteveRGrill

[xx] @OhMeadhbh

[xxi] @eviebauer727

[xxii] @JessyEllenB

[xxiii] @CapehartJ

[xxiv] @nakinatalbert

[xxv] @courtneyhook29

[xxvi] @DuplicateBoy

[xxvii] @srosariobarron

[xxviii] @bonmarta_

[xxix] @carlycoop

[xxx] @lady_aniMegan12

[xxxi] @emm_fee

[xxxii] @susurrus

[xxxiii] @IAmLindseyOk

[xxxiv] @HueManBean

[xxxv] @JoelStreicker

[xxxvi] @bravenskai

[xxxvii] @leezapolo

[xxxviii] @Ryanornot

[xxxix] @Jes_Jung

[xl] @weezwrites

[xli] @lyds_reed

[xlii] @AmyMcLelland3

[xliii] @HokyShmokes

[xliv] @GisellyGiselly2

[xlv] @AlluringShrew

[xlvi] @theycallmederk

[xlvii] @Omnistic

[xlviii] @moonklutz

[xlix] @bppfeiffer

[l] @CabelloMinnie

[li] @Omnistic

 

Chapter 8: Dreams of Impingement and Intrusion on Daily Life

In a chapter entitled “The Everyday World by Night” Charlotte Beradt reports dreams of household objects, lamps, couch pillows, ovens that develop the power of speech and reveal all their owner’s secrets. Beradt uses these dreams to explore the pervasive fear of surveillance in Germany of the 1930’s (as will we when we discuss surveillance dreams). But the sense of infiltration, of intrusion into every crack and corner of everyday living is also of note, and is a common theme in our dreaming. The pervasiveness of Trump generated news into every room of the house and every moment of the day, the inescapable surround of Trump-noise is the subject of about thirty eight dreams in the collection, as if our very homes have been taken over:

Had a dream I bought a house but it was infested with talking termites that all had Trump’s face and sounded like they all inhaled too much helium.[i]

Stretched out on the couch & fell asleep with the news on (just now woke up) dreamed Trump showed up at my apt, secret service told me I had to let him in but then he wouldn’t leave, and kept wandering around complaining because I didn’t have snacks or soda[ii]

And the home invasion seems to often focus on a seeping toxicity that seems to penetrate any boundary that we attempt to set against it:

I had a dream that Trump and his son were hiding in my childhood bedroom and smoking cigarettes with gloves because they were afraid of burning their hands[iii]

I had a drawn out dream last night about Trump. He came into my home with his security guys and took over my house to use for some political event?? He started taking apart our backyard without even asking![iv]

I just dreamt I had to brush my teeth next to Donald Trump. Ugh[v].

 Trump, in these dreams follows us from the cradle to the grave, from birth to death.

I actually had this dream last night: Trump announced it would be a new law that if a birthday cake is purchased before someone’s birthday and it’s just sitting around the kitchen, it’s perfectly acceptable to cut the cake before the actual birthday. He said, “IT’S MANDATORY.”[vi]

I had a dream this morning that Trump wouldn’t leave me alone. To get rid of him, I ran into a cemetery but there were riddles I couldn’t figure out there and then I woke up[vii]

Paying taxes is made even more odious

OMG i just remembered I had a dream that my accountant told me my tax rate was 10% because of Trump but I had to sign a loyalty pledge, and I called my sister crying.[viii]

He disrupts our religious practices, and sacred rituals, disrupting vows and worship:

Last night, I had my first wedding stress dream. I dreamed the wedding was taking place at one of Trump’s golf courses and that he crashed our reception…[ix]

My husband of 42 years (who died in 2008) and I have just gotten married. I wear a long white bridal gown (simple with lace). There are many people celebrating w/ us. I want them to be happy. They drink wine and wait for the banquet. A man I don’t know comes in with a huge flat bowl and a large bottle of champagne. He’s making wedding punch. Everyone stands in a circle holding hands to have a celebratory circle dance. I go to get my husband who is sitting near the edge of the room talking to a close friend and a few other men. He comes with me, but looks upset. The men are talking about politics. My husband is mad about Trump. I grab his hand. “Don’t talk politics w/ your friend,” I say. “This is our wedding.”  He agrees and stands next to me in the circle holding my hand. ~ Anonymous

I had a dream that my old pastor said from the pulpit: “if you didn’t vote for Trump, you don’t understand the Gospel” except the pastor was Trump!!![x]

 I had a dream I went to Easter Mass to check out the scene and low and behold      Trump was at the alter trying to usurp the priest is a semi-hostile takeover.[xi]

In dreamtime he infiltrates and dictates our work lives, and also judges our performance:

My dream was that there was some kind of outdoor event or press conference we were all expecting Trump to show up to. I was holding a clipboard, and was there in some kind of “official” capacity. We were waiting and waiting, and then suddenly I am in the back of a limo with trump himself, on our way to the event. He had a sour look on his face. He talked to me but his face wasn’t really moving. He was berating me and telling me I sucked at my job. I woke up feeling bad about myself and ashamed. ~ Anonymous

A high school friend (male) was back in my life (I have literally not seen him or remembered him for years–which made it strange… I can’t remember his name, but remember his face). He was forced to resign from a job he loved to take on an electrician job which he never trained for. He told me that he had to do this under the new government. In my dream I remember feeling that was really normal and shrugging it off. In the background was the image of Trump on a TV, but no sound…just his pursed lips and angry face. The outline of the TV was red (not like a black framed TV). It was strange and felt so disconnected when I woke up. ~ Anonymous

I dreamt I had to go to a Trump rally for work.[xii]

I had a dream that Donald trump became a manager at my job . Like he was running the shift and I was working that shift too. Apparently he quit being president ( I wish) and apparently people respected him that he works at in n out and I would just give him attitude and talked to my boss on why[xiii]

I had a dream i was working for Mr Trump, Don Jr shows up at my job, gets on the phone with someone he’s hiring to take my place. I lost my job, then i found myself on golf course lawn. I’m so bad I can’t even keep a job in a dream[xiv].

I dreamt of Trump being my boss. Weird.[xv]

I had a dream that Trump fired me and ate my cake[xvi]

I had a dream that Donald trump became my new store manager and fired me and I’m shook by it[xvii]

Our weekend recreations are no more exempt from impingement than our work week. The intrusion into the National Football Leagues policies on taking a knee to honor black lives seem to have provoked several dreams:

A few weeks ago, I had a dream where Trump was on the sidelines of an NFL game. A kicker was practicing kicking into the net. Trump tried to swoop in and kick it first, but missed and slipped into a mud puddle. Then he tried to play it off like it didn’t happen. Great dream. ~ Anonymous

Had a dream last night that Donald Trump came out during an Eagles game with the NFL rulebook and tried correcting an official on a penalty call. He and Pence then sat right in front of me and I yelled at them the rest of the game to til they left.[xviii]

Last night I dreamed that Trump demanded everyone at the #CollegeFootball championship game go through security again & delayed the game[xix]

No recreational activity is exempt:

I had a dream I was taking a class on Shakespeare taught by Natalie Portman, and it was awesome until Donald Trump tried to take over. He literally ruins everything.[xx]

He haunts dreamers on their vacations. There is literally no place left to “get away from it all.” All escape routes are cut off.

I had a dream I was at Magic Kingdom on NYE. Fighting wall-to-wall crowds, only thing open was ITS A SMALL WORLD. 1 minute in, the lights go out. Lights come back on, all the characters were replaced by Showbiz Pizza Band but lead by the Trump animatronic.[xxi]

Dreamt I called a forest ranger to tell him that Trump had broken into a cabin in the woods across from my childhood best friend’s house.[xxii]

I had a dream last night that I was on vacation somewhere and to my complete horror, Donald Trump was there. I accidentally made eye contact with him and I immediately gagged –like as a biological reflex, not on my own volition. That sounds about right.[xxiii]

And even the psychotherapy office is not exempt:

last night I had a dream that Donald Trump decided he was going to be my therapist. tf, my brain?[xxiv]

Of course the psychotherapy offices, above all, are flooded with Trump-talk daily, as therapists listen to clients sharing their hopes and fears, sorting through their losses defining their values, struggling with feelings of helplessness and impotence as those who value introspection feel politically besieged and controlled by those who do not.

 

____________________________________________

[i] @brandy_goslin

[ii] @winestainedlens

[iii] @pregnantmemedad

[iv] @NERDSnROSES

[v] @InvPac

[vi] @DilairSingh

[vii] @sparrowpost

[viii] @bridgetwi

[ix] @drussdamonk

[x] @beccapierpoint

[xi] @Holl_and

[xii] @sarahw12

[xiii] @marybieee

[xiv] @Migxp1

[xv] @dayanerds_

[xvi] @jaflaaac

[xvii] @awitsjocelyn

[xviii] @tholzerman

[xix] @ProRoMo

[xx] @auturgist

[xxi] @Oddernod

[xxii] @w3irddreams

[xxiii] @RaquelTWG

[xxiv] @MxAvren

Chapter 7: Dreams of The Marketplace

The Roman trickster god Mercury (the Greek Hermes) “was looked upon as the patron of good luck and fortune, the patron of merchants and thieves,” And the volatile world of of commerce – derives its language “mercantile” merchandise” “market” from the god’s Roman name embedded in the Latin “mercatus” . Approximately thirty three of these dream-narratives focus on the impact of the Trumpist era on their ability to negotiate and fare for themselves in the national marketplace.

I had a dream Donald trump was at the piggly wiggly last night[i]

Some seem to feel themselves profoundly negatively impacted – commerce becomes a battle ground:

I just had a dream that I had a fist fight w Trump outside of a supermarket[ii]

Others make their unhappiness known through boycott:

Had a dream last night that all the lotion in Walmart had “we support trump” stickers on the bottles. Guess who had dry skin for the rest of her dream.[iii]

But no matter the nature of the response – many are dreaming about the Trump effect as it emerges in the marketplace – often represented in dreamtime by Walmart, the nation’s largest employer and retail market:

Last night I had a dream that Trump went on a rampage in a Walmart and a guy had to tackle him down until the police got there. He was a huge Trump supporter but was like, “I’m not taking this shit anymore”. I really hope this dream is prophetic and literal.[iv]

Had a dream where I saw Trump at a Wal Mart trying to return something to Customer Service and he had shit on his nose. I don’t know how you work, brain, but keep doing your thing.[v]

I dreamt that me and Donald Trump had to sit across from each other at a random table in the middle of a Walmart to attend a presentation. I went off on the guy and he gave half assed rebuttals[vi]

I had a dream I met President Trump in Walmart. He was holding a package and exclaiming, “this package is package-sized.” I pointed out his redundancy and wished him luck on his space trip that was scheduled later that day[vii].

Other dreamers experience Trumpism impinging upon their “daily bread” as they try to feed themselves.

had a dream Donald Trump bought me a breakfast sandwich and the sandwich sucked[viii]

Had a dream I went to McDonald’s and Donald Trump was making the burgers[ix]

Now my unconscious has gone political — I finally had my first Donald Trump dream! I met the president at a McDonalds and we had a really awkward handshake.[x]

And Trump sometimes appears possessed by trickster god himself, in his guise as patron of thieves:

Had a dream Donald Trump stole a cheeseburger off my tray at McDonalds, spent the rest of my dream trying to remember my twitter password so I could call him President Hamburgerlar [xi]

One time, I had a dream we were eating McDonald’s with Trump. Trump took one bite out of all the chicken nuggets so that no one else could have them. It was so petty and it’s probably some shit he’d do in real life.[xii]

The president’s known preference for fast-food, combined with an insatiable hunger is also a collective dream theme:

I had the weirdest dream. I dreamt that I went for my interview with the department of education and Donald Trump was there arguing with people over McDonald’s & KFC fries superiority. He was just shoveling fries into his mouth by the handful and abusing people. [xiii]

Holy shit I just remembered that I had a dream this morning that Trump bought all the shares to Wendy’s (is that how the stock market works? Idk) and I had to rush to tell my fiancé to never eat there again[xiv].

 I had a dream that Donald trump owned chicken express and it caused me to roll over in bed over my own glasses breaking them and ruining my sleep[xv]

I had a dream Trump’s tantrums is caused when he find out the ice cream Machine is down at McDonalds &still doesn’t work despite who he is.[xvi]

Many dream of Trump obstructing their ability to feed themselves.

I had a dream that Donald Trump put a wall between me and my fridge once[xvii]

I had a dream that Donald Trump made olives illegal because he thought they were “weird”.[xviii]

I had a dream that the community I lived in was poverty stricken, it was a Dickenson scene. There was a hopeful feeling and everyone was lined up. Apparently Donald Trump was kind and caring. He was handing out food himself on this day. When I got to the front of the line he handed me two grocery bags stuffed full with cold jo-jos. (fried potatoes) That’s what everyone was eating. That was all there was to eat. He was bragging about his philanthropy ~ Anonymous

Some find the president eating off their plates or taking food out of their mouths:

 I had a dream that I was on one of Trump’s advisory teams and we were all out to dinner and Trump just starts digging into my plate of spaghetti with my fork so I woke up pissed off[xix]

I had a dream I heated up my food and set it on a table. I come back and Donald Trump was eating my food! He took a bite out of everything so I wouldn’t eat it. He didn’t want the food he did it to be spiteful.[xx]

I had a dream I was having dinner at the white house, there more people than forks on the table and trump and I fought over the last fork (I woke up before there was a clear winner sadly)[xxi]

If an individual in a psychotherapeutic session presented me a dream about eating or being fed, (or not fed) by another, I might explore ideas around nurturance and nutrients – how does the relationship support or prevent them from feeding themselves emotionally, psychologically, intellectually, spiritually? Who or what type of relationship might the provider or the obstacle to food represent? How well are the dreamer’s essential needs met? Are the food stuffs and supplies in the dream inadequate, toxic, contaminated, or nutritious, healthy and abundant?

Keeping our national larder stocked, our bellies full and our household’s managed rests upon our economic policies and the choices we make collectively between investing in guns or butter. The next two dreams explicitly connect the dreamer’s concerns about putting food on the table to Trump’s economic policies :

I had a dream last night about Trump raising the food tax and THAT was the time people went ‘Okay, that’s enough, he’s out.’ I don’t even think ‘food tax’ is a thing[xxii]

Just woke up from a dream where trump won his 3rd term unopposed, we were

scrounging for matches and food, yet everyone’s lawn had gov’t paid palm trees in their yards….jfc![xxiii]

We seem to be dreaming of a marketplace, governed by a mercurial leader, as unreliable and unstable as quicksilver. As we shall see in the next section, our economic circumstance is not the only aspect of every day living that has been changed profoundly.

___________________

[i] @commit2theC

[ii] @tylerisburning

[iii] @alijhoff_

[iv] @PinkberryFTW

[v] @Ivebendirty

[vi] @AhaThisGuy

[vii] @davidthebennett

[viii] @ryleemccue

[ix] @jumairaahmed1

[x] @Ben_Koltun

[xi] @GavosRancheros

[xii] @PerriFoster

[xiii] @miniestmini

[xiv] @beckashleablog

[xv] @Josh_Be_Nimble

[xvi] @Kamifaine

[xvii] @MeghanWMcCarthy

[xviii] @lunarthelion

[xix] @C_GOMPhairs

[xx] @BasedMoonie

[xxi] @baguettehon

[xxii] @Dragon_Shivers

[xxiii] @dmbfanforlife41

 

Chapter 6: Dreams of Caretaking and Infantilization

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Twenty-one dreams in this dream collection were similar to my initial dream which launched this project, where the dreamers found themselves caring for either an impaired or childlike president:

I had several where he came for advice I was comforting him, calming/talking him down, petting him. I was shocked, had to shake it off when I woke ~ Anonymous

I had a dream I was on a plane next to #Trump & he kept falling asleep with his head on my shoulder, so I had to push him against the window and straighten out his legs, so he wouldn’t get cramps.[i]

I don’t like Trump but I had a dream that I was critiquing him and his actions from a place of deep empathy and lo and behold he was actually listening and taking it on board! Not what I would have expected. ~ Anonymous

Some of these dreams might be viewed as simple wish fulfillment: wishes to influence the national trajectory for the better, to extricate themselves from anger, to remind kind and “good” in the midst of a troubled and polarized era.

Had a dream that I was Trump’s trusted advisor and I vetoed anything he said so I actually changed him as a human being to reflect my beliefs so that’s fun[ii]

But others sense that are dangers to extending their empathy.

I dreamed I was at some social event with him, and he might have been my father, or maybe he was an official escort for the evening? He was strangely needy, I felt strongly that he wanted me to like him, and was also angry that I wouldn’t approve of him. I felt both sorry for him, in his vulnerability, and also aware that he was capable of great tantrums. ~ Anonymous

Guggenbühl-Craig, in his book “The Emptied Soul: On the Nature of the Psychopath” writes about an instinctive response to public displays of stunted moral development:

Another secondary symptom is their ability to evoke pity, the same kind of pity we… experience for the helpless, and sick children. How can one help but pity these people particularly when one sense the background depression and air of despair? They seem completely helpless, lost in a world where they do not belong. Again and again they try to adjust and cope, in a fashion that always falls a bit shy of the mark. They are the eternal strangers, arousing in each of us a longing to help, a feeling which we experience with completely helpless human beings. Often this pity creates difficulties, and many is the person who falls prey to it. We often try to be kind to these ‘poor’ people and they are ‘poor’ people – our pity is justifiable.[iii]

Several dreamers contend with the notion that guidance and loving care may not always be effective:

I had a dream last night that I was able to explain to Donald Trump why you shouldn’t insult your opponents in debates, because I explained it to him step-by-step like he was five.[iv]

I dreamed last night that Donald Trump was dying and I was called to the White House to provide spiritual direction to him in his final days, but I couldn’t get him to pay attention to anything I was saying. He kept saying he wanted to take me out to eat Trump steaks.[v]

Guggenbühl-Craig elaborates:

The problem, however, is that psychopaths readily manipulate those around them through just such pity. Women are often victimized: mothering instincts are aroused, or the archetype of the nurse is constellated. They want to protect and care for the poor, sick thing and understandably so, for psychopaths strike protective chords and speak to the desire to help and heal. Those who have to deal with psychopaths readily succumb to savior fantasies. [vi]

And for those who see themselves as resisting this administration in the daylight, many seem to find themselves caught up in just such savior fantasies while they sleep:

I had a dream last night that I was Trump’s personal therapist/handler. I was supposed to be with him pretty much all the time. He slept a lot and got confused a lot and cried about his mother a lot. At one point we were at a yacht race and Trump and Biden were supposed to be doing commentary for ESPN about it. They were supposed to be at odds with each other. Biden was all keyed up, but Trump just layed his head on the broadcast desk and fell asleep.[vii]

i had a dream donald trump was in love with me and i had to choose between my moral obligation to get close to him so that i could use my new platform for Good and my physical repulsion to him[viii]

I had a dream that Donald trump was a girl and i ran into her, she was crying because she messed something up and no one would talk to her. Except me, i talked to her and calmed her down. I was basically superwoman[ix]

Many dreamers seemed to feel great conflict about assuming this role in their dreams. Some experienced that distress when they woke, others found solutions within their dreams to extricate themselves from the position they had unconsciously assumed.

I dreamed I was Donald Trump’s adult babysitter. My job was keeping him from wondering off in crowds and bringing him a Diet Coke when he threw a tantrum. Readers: I lost him in a park.[x]

 

______________________________________

[i] @janieW17

[ii] @allyciesielski

[iii] Guggehbühl-Craig, The Emptied Soul, p. 89

[iv] @Laertes1732

[v] @michaelfrost6

[vi] Guggenbühl-Craig, The Emptied Soul p. 89

[vii] @RussianDhar

[viii] @smittynibs

[ix] @Groovyangg_

[x] @HeardFC

Chapter 5: Dreams of Masturbation and Mana

This chapter focuses on just two dreams, both fairly lengthy, remarkably similar and yet diametrically opposed:

Dream #1:

I’m backstage, and have infiltrated a President Trump rally. He’s giving his usual boisterous speech to an adoring crowd. I’m on his right, crouched down, and I can see him through the wings. He has pulled out his penis and is masturbating during the speech behind the podium. The audience can’t see this, but the people backstage can. There’s another man in the wings near me who is a New York Times reporter. There’s also some Trump secret service guards. Trump masturbates throughout the speech and at the end ejaculates onto the speech. I take photos and video of this and I’m determined to post them on Facebook and Youtube. I’m worried about getting caught filming by the guards and stopped. I think it’s crucial that this is revealed to the public. Outside, I ask the reporter if he’s going to take the story to the New York Times. He’s unsure and says “I don’t know.” This is frustrating to me. He then runs off down the street. I get the impression he is going to go ahead and do it. I upload the videos to social media. I’m thinking surely this must be the thing that takes him down. 

I received the first dream, sent to me privately, by a dreamer whose therapist had heard of this dream project. The dreamer was interested in both the collective implications of the dream – and what it said about the dreamer’s own personal conflicts or “shadow” content. Viewed exclusively as a “personal” dream we might notice conflicted themes of exhibitionism, anxiety about exposure of “selfishness” and self-pleasure, ego-inflation, desire for dominance as well as internal moral sanction for “getting off” and basking in public adoration. Viewed as a collective dream it is significant that our national leader is the selected symbol of this masturbatory, exhibitionistic nation his message to the nation defiled as a mere prop for the discharge of his personal pleasure.

The second dream was posted on Twitter:

Dream #2

I had a wild dream last night… I was on my way somewhere when (a journalist) stopped me and handed me a printed booklet with an itinerary for the president’s visit, which he was covering, kind of undercover (not openly acting as himself, anyway) Inside was a hastily scribbled encouragement for me to join him; these events weren’t technically open to the public, but he said he’d vouch for me. When I got there, I understood why. You couldn’t see the shit that was going on without wanting someone to affirm what you saw. I forget most of what the president did; I mainly remember a lot of furtive whispering along the lines of “you just saw that too, right?” “yeah this is fuckin wild” while we sat across the room from him & his handlers. He refused to read anything; we watched him be handed a paper report that said the opposite of what he was being told aloud & nod as if everything was fine (which he would not have, if he’d read anything on the paper in front of him). We sat through one semi-public appearance in a hotel ballroom & watched him have a tantrum/leave because it wasn’t going exactly the way he wanted it to.

                  We were allowed into his “green room” where he was pacing back and forth, muttering about how people had no respect. He took off his suit jacket/dress shirt, fussing about the temperature. Underneath, he was wearing a t-shirt. At first I couldn’t make sense of the design on the shirt – a bottle? Then I realized it was an anti-masturbation shirt. He was wearing a shirt that had a cock and balls on it, but with a bow tied around in between the two, making the balls bulge out into what was stylized into looking like a mana potion bottle, captioned with something like “it keeps you strong!”

                  And I just started *losing my shit* that the president was wearing this fucking, dasharez0ne looking dick-and-balls as a mana potion anti-masturbation t-shirt, completely blowing my cover. The handlers rushed in to make him put on a shirt before someone could get a picture, and I was escorted out, but (the journalist) kept periodically texting me updates from inside, as the rules/restrictions for being present got increasingly unreasonable[i].

Here the dream author sees Donald Trump as courting dominance (it keeps you strong!) by retaining semen. Some athletes and performers refrain from masturbation with the belief, superstitious or not, that their powers and capacities will be diffused if their sexual energies are diminished before a big event. “Mana potion” as referred to in this dream is a highly caffeinated energy drink geared toward gamers, but the deeper archetypal notion of “mana” derives from Polynesisan and Pacific Island cultures – and refers to a kind of spiritual energy that is a source of personal power, authority and status.

But the mana-personality is a dominant of the collective unconscious, the well-known archetype of the mighty man in the form of hero, chief, magician, medicine-man, saint, the ruler of men and spirits, the friend of God. This masculine collective figure who now rises out of the dark background and takes possession of the conscious personality entails a psychic danger of a subtle nature for by inflating the conscious mind it can destroy everything that was gained… C. G. Jung, CW, Two Essay In Analytical Psychology, paragraph 377

Jung describes the psychological danger and dangerousness those who learn to exploit the primal “mana” energies of the unconscious without sufficient humility:

Possession by an archetype turns a man into a flat collective figure, a mask behind which he can no longer develop as a human being, but becomes increasingly stunted. One must therefore beware the danger of falling victim to the dominant of the mana-personality. The danger lies not only in becoming a father-mask, but in being overpowered by this mask when worn by another. ~ C. G. Jung, CW, Two Essay In Analytical Psychology, paragraph 390

In this dream Trump is not adored by the crowd but becomes enraged when an appearance does not unfold as he hoped. The dreamer describes it as an “anti-masturbation t-shirt”   and it is unclear if this dream-Trump is secretly (underneath his suit) launching an anti-masturbation campaign – to actively disrupt and forbid the self-pleasure of others, or if this is merely the hidden source of his mana-authority

Both dreams take place “back stage” and behind the scenes. Both dreams involve exposure to secrets otherwise hidden from public view (behind a podium, under a suit), both dreams involve reporters with cameras who may potentially record and release secret, damning information. Both dreamers seek some confirmation and collaboration with members of the media. Both dreamers feel overwhelmed and frightened by the knowledge they have gained, and fearful of having their “cover blown” and being exposed. Both dreams involve necessary information “leaking” to the collective public through secondary sources- in one, the dreamer is the source of the leaked information to social media and you tube, in the other – the dreamer is the recipient of information messaged to the outside world. Both dreams paint a picture of an administration “run amok” and pathological, and power-mad.

The presence of cameras in these dreams serve as an “observing ego” that records without judging what it has witnessed. There is an expectation that the press should function as an extension of this function – and report on what it has witnessed without censoring or editing reality. In the first dream the member of the press pool says he doesn’t know if he will report this information, although the dreamer suspects that he will eventually. In the second dream – journalists’ functions are disrupted by the administration’s increasingly unreasonable rules and regulations on freedom of the press. Either way, in both of these dreams -the press as the collective “observing ego” is disabled and it is unclear if it will function properly – by reporting the information to the body politic who will then administer a moral judgment and “take him down” And like their dream-egos, both dreamers felt compelled to share the dreams themselves with the wider public, just as they felt compelled, within the dream, to report on what they had witnessed.

The larger questions in these similar and opposite dreams call on each of us to examine the aspects of our personalities which gather (and abuse) power for its own sake, or for self-pleasure rather than in the service of mutuality or for the sake of the greater good.

 

[i] @quicksilvre

 

Chapter 4: Dreams of Incompetence and Cognitive Decline

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There has been a great deal of speculation about Trump’s mental and legal competency. News articles, op-ed writers and Ivy League professors analyze his impulsivity, and his compulsive lying. Speech analysts examine his verbal skills and idiosyncratic use of language for signs of decline or dementia.

Last night I dreamt that we were all forced to go to a Trump event and at the end we all got his autograph, but he misspelled Donald as Dinald on everyone’s poster of his face.[i]

Approximately thirty-six dreams in the collection elucidate themes of decline, dementia, incompetence, disinhibition and infantilization with regard to the current leader of the United States.

Last night I had a dream Donald Trump was singing the national anthem for some event and midway through completely forgot all the words then after he was done someone yelled “hey at least were standing up though, right?”[ii]

I had a dream that Donald trump bought everyone breakfast but didn’t get anyone’s breakfast order right[iii]

Certainly, these dreamers could be processing explicit concerns about the neurological health and cognitive functioning of the current president, but it is as likely that these dreamers, and the nation as a whole, are contending with deeper archetypal content. Jungian theorist Adolf Guggenbühl-Craig writes about the aging process, and the archetypes that are projected upon and activated in older people. Most of us are familiar with the archetype of the Wise Old Man, but Guggenbühl-Craig posits The Old Fool as a shadow aspect of the aging experience. The Old Fool, increasingly nostalgic, loses interest in contemporary technologies and modes of thinking.

Old people themselves are often unaware that they have lost contact with the collective psyche, with the collective conscious and unconscious. They think the young people have lost direction. One often hears older professors complain that students are disoriented, that they have lost all values.~ Adolf Guggenbühl-Craig, The Old Fool and the Corruption of Myth

The archetypal Demented Ruler, The Mad Emperor, or Wounded King of Arthurian legend, lives with a wound that never heals, and reins over a land that is likewise suffering and troubled.

When old people stay in power, it often means disaster. Power affects them like a drug: they no longer suffer from the fear of deterioration, from the fear of death and dying. Instead they turn into tyrants feeding on illusions. They lose the capacity to understand their own behavior, and since wisdom has been projected on to them anyway, nobody corrects or challenges them any more.     ~ Adolf Guggenbühl-Craig, The Old Fool and the Corruption of Myth

If, in the symbolic realm of myth dream and fairy-tale, the health of the ruler reflects the health of his kingdom, what do dreams of Trump in cognitive decline say about our unconscious diagnosis of the state of the nation and our country’s prognosis?

The night before last I actually had a dream that Donald Trump came to a party I was having. Nobody would talk to him so I tried to be nice and introduced myself. He had horrible breath and immediately started lying about the most mundane things. He was clearly not well in my dream, like you could see a deadness growing behind his eyes. When someone finally asked me what I said to him, I just should my head and said “He’s very sick.”[iv]

Last night I dreamed that Trump said something insane and mindless it was clear he had dementia i don’t remember what just lots of stuttering then today the report gets released of his statements about Haiti and Nigeria and he trends on Twitter again just like the dream[v]

I had a dream that Donald Trump punched me in the face. He was living in my house and was throwing tantrums like my g-pa used to when he was dealing with dementia. He wasn’t getting his way so he punched me in the face to try to prove his point.[vi]

I had a dream last night that trump admitted his cognitive ability was declining and he needed to move into a memory care unit.[vii]

If the president is symbolic of the disturbances of our larger national and cultural challenges, how might our institutional and collective memory demonstrate a comparable decline? Certainly the news cycle and the attentions of social media seem to be rife with a kind of pathological forgetting. The emergence of the internet as archive, and our reliance on technology has transformed what we do and do not need to store in our individual memory files. Fairly recent pre-internet historical events, if a record has not been documented online seem to be forgotten entirely.

Infantilization, treating or characterizing an adult as if they were an infant, is a common theme in these collected dreams. Excusing, under-estimating, minimizing adult actions as if they were the harmless gestures of a baby or framing the president’s behavior as “childish”

Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

~William Shakespeare, As You Like It

Accurately or not, the decline of older age has been historically, archetypally depicted as a kind of “second infancy.” Whether these dreams associate loss of inhibition and impulsivity with developmental immaturity or the regression of advanced age, there is the notion, – including in my own dream which began this project – that in our dreaming, a kind of childishness nearly exonerates the president from responsibility for his actions.

My friend texted me this morning saying she dreamed that Trump was a literal baby she had to take care of ~ Anonymous

Last night I had a weird dream about Donald Trump and Steve Bannon throwing teething biscuits and strained carrots at each other from two high chairs[viii].

Dreamt Donald Trump sat all alone in a playground, because no-one wanted to play with him. Offered him a cup of tea.[ix]

Dreams which depict the president as a “big baby”:

I dreamed last night that I applied a MASSIVE nicotine patch to Donald Trump’s back while he slumped over my knee like a giant, clammy baby.[x]

Last night’s dream. I had trapped Trump in one of those baby playpen/travel cot things and built a wall of chunky kitkats around it which I added to whenever he tried to speak. Analyse that!![xi]

I had a dream in which I was criticizing Trump with my best friend, then a giant-sized Trump appeared and started chasing me in a building. He was much taller than the ceiling and he literally made the sound of a crying toddler.[xii]

Dreams of deteriorating social inhibition activate the dreamer’s sense of disgust:

I had a dream I was holding a door shut so Donald Trump couldn’t get in and then I heard him fart really loudly[xiii]

i just remembered that i had a dream earlier where i walked in on donald trump doing a press conference but he was shirtless, orange, and eating full sticks of butter by the handful.[xiv]

Other dreamers seem to frame Trump’s incapacity either as an innate lack of intelligence, or a chosen commitment to ignorance – rather than as a sign of deterioration:

Unrelated, but I dreamed that I was watching a newscast of Donald Trump trying to add Africa to a map because he thought it wasn’t on there because he didn’t know geography, and I was almost late to class because I thought I was awake because it wasn’t too unrealistic tbh [xv]

But whether the president is viewed as incompetent due to age and disease or as a result of his characterological make-up – the consequences may still be felt to be life-threatening:

Had a dream where I was married to this weird white lady, had a heart attack at my wedding where Donald Trump performed surgery on me. I remember thinking “I can’t live like this. There is no way he did a good job.”[xvi]

 

 

____________________________________________________

[i] @celiacrisassy

[ii] @pcoyne3

[iii] @hippydest

[iv] @tilton_raccoon

[v] @fritz_gruber

[vi] @crclark51515

[vii] @SoozleMcDoozle

[viii] @HCwrites

[ix] @Dr_Milkyway

[x] @hugh_raine

[xi] @mardybum_73

[xii] @lyswenn

[xiii] @pennytbh

[xiv] @BridgetteLong_

[xv] @NerdyChineseBoy

[xvi] @davisabsolute

 

Chapter 3: Dreams of Humiliation and Hair

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An inflation, however, is always threatened with a counter-stroke from the unconscious, C. G. Jung, CW, Answer to Job

In the previous chapter we focused on the ego inflation that is associated and activated by Trumpism, Let’s recall that, for the purposes of this discussion, these are not dreams about Donald Trump as a man, but about the archetypes that he channels unconsciously (and also perhaps consciously and manipulatively) and that we as a nation project upon him.

            The experience of being “puffed up” beyond the bounds of fallible humanity is a universal, life-long challenge and brings specific gifts and dangers with it whenever it emerges. Flying too near the sun, reaching for elevations beyond our station always has psychological consequences in an individual psyche and in the community.

Icarus, the son of the famous craftsman Daedalus learned this fatal lesson: Daedalus crafted wax and feather wings to teach himself to fly. He warned Icarus, before his first lesson, not to fly too high – or the wings would melt, nor too low, which would weigh down the feathers with salt water and pull him into the sea, the middle course the only safe route. Icarus so exhilarated with the experience of flight, disregarded his father’s warnings, flying higher and higher, melting his wings. He fell into the sea and drowned.

Nature corrects our course and sets limits on our accomplishments and our failures just as the sea and atmosphere and the sun do. If our conscious ego becomes expanded and moves toward inflated imbalance, the pendulum of the unconscious swings toward deflation and humiliation. This chapter examines the themes that emerge in approximately fifty-seven dreams of humiliation and debasement.

Nemesis comes from the word nemo, which means to distribute, to attribute each one his rightful lot. Nemesis is a principle of natural justice by which everyone gets what he or she deserves. We cannot avoid seeing that there is such a principle in the unconscious, which has a curious way of exactly what one feels is somehow deserved. It is not justice in the human sense of the word, but there is an uncanny regulating force in nature which acts like justice and strikes one as being meaningful. ~ Marie Louise von Franz, Shadow and Evil in Fairy Tales

                  The unconscious response of the collective will move to bring the one who has been set too high back to earth by knocking the stuffing out of him in one form or another. The fifty-seven dreams of deflation in this collection express the desire for corrective, relieving humbling, as an inflated leader is brought low.

A figurehead seated on an elevated throne in the previous chapter is now depicted as a mere pretender with a paper crown:

I had a dream that the White House wouldn’t let Trump actually work so everyday he would just make himself a paper crown and go to the mall to get a Wetzel Pretzel and honestly, I would be ok with that.[i]

Hubris will inevitably be humiliated and deflated. Kings will be dethroned:

I had a dream last night that Trump was inside a porta-potty and I pushed it over[ii]

Laughter, mockery, public outlets for such as Roman Saturnalias, Italian Commedia Del Arte, the or Korean Talchum created sanctioned outlets for the general populace to mock and laugh at their national leaders, wealthy emperors, and grandiose aristocrats.

Last night I dreamt that I vandalized Donald Trump’s mansion. He had a surprisingly number of clown portraits[iii]

This ritual buffooning persists in the grotesque presidential rubber masks that are pressed and sold each year for Halloween and Purim, in the political sketches and impersonations on Saturday Night Live and in the remnants of the annual roast performed at the White House Correspondent’s Association Dinner. Ancient kings were bound to their beloved jesters, who pressed them to return to healthy humility by calling on them to laugh at their own folly.

Oh yeah, I had a weird dream where I was in some sort of celebratory dinner/meeting event with influential people around the world. Trump was also there. He made a joke, loudly so everyone could hear. All talking ceased. No-one laughed, so Trump was confused and exclaimed- “Why aren’t you laughing? It was a good joke!” But no-one cared and they just kept going with their original conversations. An odd dream for sure.[iv]

When the ruler refuses to laugh, he will still be laughed at, perhaps even more robustly – stripped of his grandeur just as Hans Christian Anderson’s emperor in his “magic” clothes.

I had a dream I convinced Donald Trump to wear hot pink skinny jeans. It was awesome.[v]

In The Third Reich of Dreams, Beradt reported a handful of dreams which focused on such mocking debasement amplifying the vulnerabilities of the leaders of the Third Reich, Goebbels’s clubfoot, or depicting Goering as a “fat swine” or dressed ridiculously:

Goering appeared in a brown leather jerkin, shooting a crossbow, which made me laugh out loud. All of a sudden, I was standing there next to him, wearing the same kind of jerkin and carrying the same kind of crossbow – how I got there I don’t know– and he made me his personal archer. ~ C. Beradt, The Third Reich of Dreams, p.117

But as we see in Beradt’s example, such jesting and “cutting down to size” carries with it the risk of making extremely dangerous potentialities seem manageable, palatable or even undetectable though drollery. A deadly poison mixed into a sugared spoonful of comedy.

I’m not one to talk about dreams I’ve had, but last night Trump was wearing a shiny sequined dress and I had to tell him he looked better in it than Hillary and I feel like that’s worth mentioning.[vi]

As King Lear disintegrates into the madness of grandiosity his beloved Fool has no further function to serve in deflating a pompous ruler. Jest dies away, replaced with pity for the follies of a destructive and deluded dying king:

Last night I dreamt that I saved Donald Trump from his own media event. The crowd, a group of students, turned on Trump and his bodyguards were only half engaged. I was near the front. When the crowd turned, Trump’s bluster fell away to leave a frightened old man, hectored and alone. He cowered under a coat as I helped get him to his helicopter. The image that lingered was the raging crowd jostling a broken figure, a once proud and belligerent man trapped by the limitations of his age and stupidity.[vii]

Our unconscious may compensate for an intolerably imbalanced reality by transforming power into impotence.

I had a dream that Donald Trump was wandering around at my job without a Secret Service escort and everybody was just rolling their eyes and trying to pretend he wasn’t there[viii]

I had a dream that trump was like 3 feet tall and got super drunk and threw a beer bottle in the smith haven mall?? I took a video of course to show the news.[ix]

Nemesis: The Greek goddess of retribution who punishes all who have seemingly escaped the demands of human justice or received good fortune beyond their entitlement. The Dispenser of Dues. The Balancer of Life. The punisher of Narcissus. She operates in our collective psyche calling on the human species to bring low any who presume, who dare to claim the pedestal for themselves. A ten-foot throne reduced to twelve inches:

In March of 2016 I woke up around 3 am suddenly from a nightmare. I had been ushered into a small room with gold curtains. The room was full of gold statues of Trump. The pedestal was about 4 feet high with a likeness of Trump sitting on a throne about 1 feet high. Suddenly the statue on the left fell over knocking down the rest of the statues one by one. I knew that I didn’t want to touch any of the statues at all and was desperate to get out of the room. ~ Anonymous 

~~~~~~~

In the Old Testament, Samson loses his uncanny physical powers when Delilah shears his enchanted locks while he sleeps. The power of Trump’s brand is inseparable from his the strange thatch of straw-colored hair which sits atop his head. Nine dreams of debasement and humiliation focus specifically on the president’s hair.

“A man’s hair has denoted strength, virility, youth, sexiness, and potency, of which he can feel robbed by baldness” ~ The Book of Symbols, Reflections on Archetypal Images

Like an inverted Delilah, nine dream authors have shorn Trump in their sleep. In the next dream, the archetypal feminine – in the form of a chestnut mare – is the strong man’s downfall:

I attend an American rodeo show. During the interval Trump walks over to the middle of the stadium to address the audience. A beautiful chestnut mare with a single white star on her forehead breaks loose and races over to him. With her teeth she rips off Donald’s blonde wig and then carries it around the stadium, in her mouth, like a trophy.  Trump, at once, covers his head in shame and instructs his security men to get the hairpiece back; only they can’t catch the horse as she moves in a way they don’t understand. The audience is shocked. Many (including myself) begin to laugh nervously at first, then with more gusto. We can’t figure out whether this is part of the show or not. Trump knows there will be no comeback from this. He’s finished for good and is now a laughing stock. The entire dream took place in the stadium, which was a large circle. And aside from being an audience member, I took no other part in this dream. ~ Anonymous

A single mare – a domesticated, “broken” but powerful feminine animal instinct – is anointed by white star on her forehead as if she has been chosen to liberate the herd. She “breaks loose” and snatches Trump’s hairpiece with her sharp teeth, exposing him to public humiliation rendering him powerless. The dreamer watches, with some nervous pleasure, but does not participate in the action, watching the instinctive correction of the herd unfold from the back of the stadium.

Had a dream that I tried to rip Trump’s hair off.[x]

Dreams of stripping away artificial hair can be seen as a desire to simultaneously disempower the president and to expose the realities hidden from the world by extreme, even ridiculously artificial measures.

“Baldness can also signify punishment, degradation or a kind of dehumanization as in the traditional shaving of the heads of criminals.” ~ The Book of Symbols, Reflections on Archetypal Images

Those who snatch, steal, shave, and mock the president’s hair in their sleep may find themselves relieved and energized by their ability to wrest control over circumstances, to reveal and identify truths instinctively recognized – no matter how elaborate the attempted “come-over” or cover up

I love my father… I’m on the phone w/him and he says he had a dream the other night about trump being kidnapped. They didn’t want $ or gov’t control, they just shaved his head and sent him back to the WH bald.[xi]

I’d suggest that when so many dream of such empowered victories that an unconscious compensation for a feeling of powerlessness may be at play.

I had a dream I saw donald trump irl and my only though was “yeah there’s absolutely no way that hair is real”[xii]

Some feel grounded by their ability to discern reality through the artifice, while others are seemingly uneasy and disturbed after a glimpse of an unseemly truth behind the mask:

Had a dream I watched a topless Donald trump dye his hair in my bathroom whilst singing and it was weird and I’m scarred[xiii]

I had a Trump dream where he had a flaming head and hair. At least I think it was a dream.[xiv]

Control slips. Wigs are snatched. Truth will come out just as the roots of our hair reveal our true colors over time. And when we do lose control, when we are caught up in chaos and reactivity, we can find ourselves adrenalized, or in a state of panic as if our hair is on fire.

 

 

Note regarding endnotes: Twitter dreams are credited to their authors below. I have removed hyperlinks to prevent harassment. The @45dreamsproject twitter feed is available for perusal. It is possible that accounts/tweets that have been subsequently deleted or set to private were archived while the account status was active and public.

[i] @britthippie

[ii] @jamiebuilds

[iii] @call_me_tacos

[iv] @_Raake_

[v] @_jaybae__

[vi] @ClayDWestbrook

[vii] @Wardotron

[viii] @mcgee_gorgo

[ix] @hurb44

[x] @SwampKid_

[xi] @LoeKey9

[xii] @swaggermeister7

[xiii] @ellaksmith

[xiv] @bluemoonpaul

 

Chapter 2: Dreams of Hubris & Inflation

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I would suggest that we speak instead of “psychic inflation.” The term seems to me appropriate in so far as the state we are discussing involves an extension of the personality beyond individual limits, in other words, a state of being puffed up. In such a state a man fills a space, which normally he cannot fill. He can only fill it by appropriating to himself contents and qualities, which properly exist for them alone and should therefore remain outside our bounds. ~ C. G. Jung, CW The Relations Between the Ego and the Unconscious

 

In 2016, after the primaries and as the presidential election loomed on the horizon, a group of prominent Jungians urgently gathered a collection of essays “A Clear and Present Danger” to examine the role of narcissism in American society and the electoral process.

“We wish to reiterate that we are not proposing that Donald Trump suffers from Narcissistic Personality Disorder, nor are we proposing he does not. Yet we wish to thank him and other candidates in the 2016 presidential election for the opportunity to take an honest look in the mirror and confront our individual and collective narcissism.” ~ Leonard Cruz, MD & Steven Buser, MD, editors, Clear and Present Danger 

There are other psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists who have been outspoken about their belief that Donald Trump is diagnosable, and who believe that diagnosis is a politically necessary gesture from the mental health community as part of their “duty to warn” regarding significant threats to public safety. Many mental health practitioners feel ethically bound by “The Goldwater Rule” – section 7 of the American Psychiatric Association’s Principals of Medical Ethics – which prohibits diagnosing anyone that the practitioner has not personally assessed. Still others express significant concern about using diagnosis as a political weapon that will be wielded by oppressors as surely as justice-seekers.

Narcissism in its extreme form is categorized diagnostically as a personality disorder – but the capacity to experience narcissistic injury, disruptions to our healthy narcissism or to be swept up into narcissistically inflated states are universal human experiences. Any time we feel invulnerable, unstoppable, or “larger than life”, any time we forget our limitations and feel nothing but our strengths, any time we draw on the energies that come with the approval of a collective “movement” or mob – we are experiencing some form of narcissistic inflation. But what is going on exactly when the “ego is inflated?” In simple terms, the personality claims “credit” or “ownership” of ideas, energies, accomplishments that they did not create or invent alone.

I just woke up. I had a dream that Trump took credit for ending the Boer War. It was a dream, right?[i]

 The purpose of this chapter is not to diagnose, but to examine the themes of grandiosity and inflation – as demonstrated by approximately twenty-three dreams in this collection- which are focused on the current president as a titular manifestation of our national hubris.

I dreamed I’d discovered that Trump had sent every bill to Congress on a platter bearing his portrait in crudité. And this was the game-changing secret that revealed how deeply weird and wrong everything has been & that I had to bring to the public. Luckily, it was just a dream![ii]

Like Narcissus falling in love with his own reflection, in this dream seems to suggest that the Trump administration is so infatuated with their leader’s imprint that his visage is served, raw, to Congress.

The phrase “everywhere I look I see myself” comes to mind as an apt description of how the narcissist approaches the world.”( ~ Kathryn Madden, PhD, The Hall of Mirrors; Narcissism and Celebrity in the World of Twitter and Reality TV, Clear and Present Danger, Leonard Cruz, MD & Steven Buser, MD, editors)

In subsequent dreams the presidential reflection is all encompassing, inescapable, imprinted everywhere, his face, his words, his name:

I had a dream that Donald Trump gifted me 20 books. But all 20 of them were either written BY him or ABOUT him. So I picked one up and threw it at his head whilst yelling at him[iii]

So I just had a dream that the anniversary of Trump’s inauguration was declared National Donald Trump Day and everyone was wearing MAGA shirts and hats[iv].

 I had a dream Trump invited me over for dinner and he showed me his room and the walls were full of portraits of himself and then he took me on a ride on his spacecraft[v]

had a dream last night that i was watching trump giving his state of the union address and the entire address was just ‘the star spangled banner’ but all the lyrics were ‘trump’[vi]

i dreamt Trump had changed the look of the US currency. It had a grotesque caricature of his face on it, and the motto was “Everyone Can Dream.” The news report said this “special currency” would be available in 15 countries in addition to the US.[vii]

I had a dream last night that Donald Trump blew up the entire city of Philadelphia to build a giant statue of himself.[viii]

Some dreamers translate the ego inflation of this administration in literal imagery. Here Trump is both puffed up and sainted:

I had a dream last night that I got a blow-up Donald Trump Santa for Christmas[ix]

Others depict the dangers of becoming power-drunk:

I had a weird dream that ended with me attending a Trump show with him getting progressively drunker. Right before I woke up he was mixing different types of taco seasoning to pour into a beer.[x]

According to psychoanalyst Heinz Kohut, in optimal circumstances infantile narcissism transforms into mature love of others over the course of healthy development. When we have experienced injuries to our healthy narcissism, when we are starved of accurate mirroring and appropriate admiration – we are left hungry and profoundly dependent on “narcissistic supplies” extracted from others to shore up our unstable self-esteem. That “neediness” often makes others feel held captive and coerced into expressions of admiration:

I had a dream where Donald Trump’s keeps like a group of people in some secret like luxury RV somewhere held captive and like just comes by every now and then to like feed them and makes them listen to him and tell him he’s great[xi]

Several dreams explored the possibility of manipulating Trump’s apparent dependency on such narcissistic supplies by offering or withholding them in service of their own political agendas:

Omg I had a dream last night I was trying to convince Donald Trump to clean up his act. I tried to convince him that “everyone would love him” and his “ratings would skyrocket” if he started to act right.[xii]

I had a dream that Trump visited my house and we sat down to have a rational discussion about int’l affairs but first I had to compliment his negotiation & deal-making skills before he would listen to me about Syria and North Korea[xiii]

So in my dream China worked hard to reduce pollution, then taunted trump by boasting about it. Trump took it as a pissing contest, so three days later America and China had both spent billions to fix pollution better than the other and the world was a better place[xiv]

Other dreamers found their dream-egos fueling up with narcissistic supplies received from the president.

I had a dream last night that Donald Trump tipped me my biggest tip at work & told me nobody else believed in me like he did[xv]

i had a dream last night that i was being cheated on and for some reason i ran into donald trump and i was crying and i asked him for relationship advice and he just said i’m better than whoever made me cry and now i’m not mad at trump today?[xvi]

Compare such dreams to this one collected by Beradt in 1930’s Germany:

Goering himself came to inspect my office and gave me a satisfied nod. This unfortunately pleased me enormously, even though I was thinking what a fat swine he is. ~ Charlotte Beradt, The Third Reich of Dreams, p. 61

In the next dream: Trump is both elevated and enthroned as the world behind him erupts in flames:

I dreamed I was at a party where a wide red and gold carpet was rolled out for Trump and led to an elevated throne. No one could enter through the main door once the carpet was placed. The throne was set 10 feet above us. Through the back windows, I could see explosions. No one seemed bothered. There was something else that’s still fuzzy… I told Pence he was mentioned in the bible and to look up 1 Timothy 4. (I’m not familiar with that book.) And i remember telling Trump that his questions were attacks instead of constructive ways to gather information.[xvii]

The biblical text referenced by the dream challenges this inflation as hypocritical and “of the devil:

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: ~ 1 Timothy 4:1-4 King James Version

Icarus ignored his vulnerability and flew too near the sun. Hubris may also manifest as an abject rejection of weakness, the refusal of any mirror that offers an unflattering image:

I had a dream I had to fit Trump for a suit at my job but he was in denial about his measurement[xviii]

Possessed by hubris we see ourselves as more than we are. Moreover, when we embrace ego-intoxication we also make ourselves susceptible to a subsequent collapse, an energetic and humiliating deflation that corrects our psychological imbalance and brings us low.

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Note on endnotes: Twitter dreams are credited to their authors below. I have removed hyperlinks. The @45dreamsproject Twitter account remains available for perusal. It is possible that accounts/tweets that have subsequently been deleted or set to private were archived while their account status was active and public.

[i] @OPCGhost

[ii] @ragepath

[iii] @TheHawaiianGay_

[iv] @NJ_Austin

[v] @corporatestoney

[vi] @Justin_Tendo

[vii] @Steve_Espinola

[viii] @angelfleek

[ix] @Break_the_Blank

[x] @Koltreg

[xi] @Courtneyylovvee

[xii] @Chaseduh

[xiii] @IMMAkillem

[xiv] @Mauneman

[xv] @Elinhaaf

[xvi] @calibeyc

[xvii] @LadyT_TNT

[xviii] @CreoleBabyBritt