Icons of a Dreaming Heart: The Art and Practice of Dream-Centered Living
“Behold a beautiful book: fresh, alive, penetrating, subtle. It’s not just about dreams, but about life’s daily waking dreaming, the mysteries that permeate our days, the images that swarm abound us. It’s written as narratives folded into narratives, always captivating and educating, always enticing and even entertaining. I fell into its stream and wanted it to go on and already imagine its sequel.” —Thomas Moore, author of Care of the Soul and The Planets Within
We are accustomed—it is now part of our culture—to imagining dreams as some kind of “messages” from the “unconscious.” Sometimes, they really get our attention and won’t go away. Still, the prevailing notion is that if dreams do mean anything, they must be “interpreted,” put into our present ways of understanding, taken out of their own way of presenting themselves.
Renée Coleman, explodes and breaks through the very notion of “interpretation” which has become an actual block, a barrier to dreaming having immediate significance in life. Dreaming, she convincingly shows through intense and dramatic demonstrations with her dream groups, presents, presences, the action of imaginally real companions. Dreams are real! They are not separate from life but rather ever-present promptings to enter further and further into the fullness of life.
How Dr. Coleman lets the characters, actions, circumstances, and the very worlds of dreaming reveal themselves constitutes the essence of this writing. There is no theory here. We are taken into a new kind of attentiveness, available to everyone. We learn a deep listening, being penetrated, coming into immediacy, intimacy, complexity with each and every character of a dream and what those characters are doing with us. We come to experience the dream presences as quite autonomous from us, visitors, not from “elsewhere,” but ever-present visitors asking to be noticed.
The great secret revealed in Icons of a Dreaming Heart is that by saying “yes” to the beckoning of dream presences in our noticing, caring, and attending, we are changed to the very core of our being. We begin to have incredible, increasingly extended moments of realizing how unbelievable and persistently rich life can be.
About the Author
Born and raised in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, Renée Coleman lives with her husband and their four children in Santa Clarita, California, where she works at developing the art and practice of dream-centered living. As a certified DreamTender, she endeavors to teach dreamers how to navigate through the many twists and turns of the dream-time using a holistic, embodied, and imaginal approach.Renée earned her Mythological Studies doctorate at Pacifica Graduate Institute in 2002. Before going back to school, she worked as an actor and model. She is an alumna of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts (West) and Antioch University of Los Angeles.
Robert Sardello, PhD, is cofounder (with Cheryl Sanders-Sardello, PhD, in 1992) of the School of Spiritual Psychology. At the University of Dallas, he served as chair of the Department of Psychology, head of the Institute of Philosophic Studies, and graduate dean. He is also cofounder and a faculty member of the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture, as well as author of more than 200 articles in scholarly journals and cultural publications, and is a former faculty member of the Chalice of Repose Project in Missoula, Montana. Having developed spiritual psychology based in archetypal psychology, phenomenology, and the spiritual science of Rudolf Steiner from more than thirty-five years of research in this discipline, as well as holding positions in two universities, Dr. Sardello is now an independent teacher and scholar, teaching all over the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., as well as the Czech Republic, the Philippines, and Australia. He is a consultant to many educational and cultural institutions and a dissertation adviser at numerous academic institutions. He is author of several books, including Facing the World with Soul; Love and the World; Freeing the Soul from Fear; The Power of Soul: Living the Twelve Virtues. and Silence.