The Dream Book of Self-Knowledge


  • a child: a person who does not belong to the family and washes a child is the emotional animus or emotional anima; if the person washes his own child it attests to important work by the dreamer on his own self-improvement, though only on the level of unifying instinctual antitheses.
  • washing a head: cleansing the mind of everything instinctual, sorting out the ballast of ideas with emotion (water).
  • washing hair: the dreamer's attempt to cleanse the consciousness of sexual images in favor of feeling; an attempt at self-improvement.
  • washing one's feet; washing others' feet: by washing his feet or those of others (own personifications, and thus parts of oneself) the dreamer is helping to remove moral psychological impurities that he himself created in instinctual living; impurities that are "stored" mainly in the lower parts of the body.
  • objects and self: a subconscious attempt at transforming this washing symbol; if the dreamer's consciousness remains in an emotional area and at least momentarily feels compassion, then such a transformation can actually take place, otherwise the symbol is usually parodied by the unconscious so that the ensuing images become a painful thorn in the soul for future change.
  • washing with beer: a futile attempt at purification; the unconscious will soon set to the dreamer a mirror with a beer symbol so that he, even if only subconsciously, understands the traits linked to this symbol.
  • washing in a flush toilet: if the water is clean, then the scene is not a perversion but merely an unconventional way of moral cleansing.
  • washing with soap, soaping others: see Soap.
  • thorough cleansing: has the power to dramatically transform the dream setting so that the dreamer, who has become morally pure, can confront the contents of his own psyche; the symbol's culmination is transformation (witnessed and experienced).
  • washing helps the dreamer remove the moral impurities known in mythology as the "Augean stable," i.e. all the impurities that he has created in instinctual living, impurities that he, like the mythical Heracles in an almost superhuman effort, will have to clean.