"And the earth moves beneath your own dream landscape." - U2, A Sort of Homecoming, The Unforgettable Fire
Waking Life Earthquakes
In waking life earthquakes are some of the more catastrophically destructive forces the earth has to offer - at least from our point of view. The ground beneath our feet, the solid foundation upon which we depend is suddenly ripped away as we struggle to keep ourselves upright. Part of what makes waking life earthquakes so destructive is their unpredictability. We never know when the ground will surge or how long the earth will shudder before things return to normal.
It is not only the ground beneath our feet that is of concern when an earthquake strikes, but also the oceans that border that ground. Earthquakes are precursors to tsunamis and the more intense the ground shakes, the higher the waves that will soon rush to shore after the trembling earth is steady again.
Why Waking Life Earthquakes Help One Interpret Dream Earthquakes
It is always important to keep waking life realities in mind when attempting to decipher the symbols that show up in dream reality. Dreams speak a language that depends upon symbols. Dreams rarely communicate along linear, logical, left brain avenues. They tend to send their messages via right brain, non-verbal, non-linear symbols. And while a symbol is a stand-in for a something else, that symbol is always closely related to whatever it is standing in for.
In the case of dreams of earthquakes, the symbolic reference is fairly clear - something is causing one to feel as if the earth is trembling, as if that upon which one has always relied is no longer reliable. This type of dream may reflect an emotional state, or a situation that has become untenable. Is there someone or something upon which you have always depended who you feel isn't there for you anymore?
Dreams of earthquakes may be warning dreams. These warning can be one of the times that dreams are speaking literally. Some people are sensitive to changes that precipitate earthquakes and their dreams may actually indicate that a literal, physical, waking life earthquake is on the way.
The warning of an earthquake dream may also be of the symbolic variety. An earthquake dream could be symbolic of something that will feel like an earthquake in waking life - something that comes out of the blue, wreaks havoc, and makes one feel as if the ground has fallen away from one's feet. We are often more sensitive to non-verbal communication than we give ourselves credit. Whether one calls it intuition, psychic ability, or a simple gift for reading body language or subconsciously picking up on social cues is unimportant. What is important is that we trust ourselves when we get our "gut feelings" or our non-linear information.
As previously stated, earthquakes are precursors to another form of unexpected catastrophe - tsunamis. However, whereas earthquakes typically symbolize the crumbling away of something normally reliable, tsunamis symbolize something that suddenly overwhelms. And as water is typically symbolic of emotion, an earthquake dream might be a way of warning that an emotionally overwhelming event is on the way.
While these interpretations sound grim, please remember that oftentimes dreams are reflections not of what is so but of what one feels is so. There is a huge difference between the two.
As always, sleep well and dream out loud!
*~Aisling Ireland~* is an ordained Interfaith Minister, available for weddings and commitment ceremonies and a Spiritual Counselor providing dream interpretation and Tarot readings. To make an appointment check out her website at: Sang-Realta Spiritual Counseling
The Ground Beneath Her Feet is Salman Rushdie's epic of a love lost to an earthquake. The book is available from Amazon, as is the soundtrack to The Million Dollar Hotel, which features the song The Ground Beneath Her Feet with lyrics written by Rushdie.