I posted my crucible of gold dream to a mailing list which was discussing Jung’s Aion. I received some very helpful comments, and I especially want to thank Steve Bond and Jane Griscti. Elements of my dream relate to alchemy, with which I was not familiar.
The making of gold, the refining process, can refer to the extracting of spiritual meaning from the ore of experience, and also to the individuation process. Jung associated gold, sun, and Self with each other. In alchemy, the crucible represents the individual’s life.
My sense of the dream now is of entering a period in my life of extracting spiritual meaning from my life experiences, and of seeing that meaning in relationship to the shape of my own life (the cooling gold conforming to the shape of the crucible), and then having it reshaped according to the pattern of my self (the anticipated mask of the sun). While I assist actively in the first process, my sense in the dream was that the making of the mask of the sun would occur as part of a larger process—the malleable gold I had helped create in the crucible would be taken and shaped into the solar face which I would then see.
Steve Bond commented about the documentary film motif in my dream. He suggested that the work we do as individuals can sometimes have significance for others. His comment prompted me to publish more about my dreams and mandalas.
Part of my spiritual work—my refining process—involves attending to my dreams, journaling, and drawing pictures. I’ve tried to capture part of my own experience of the process of spiritual work in this:
A Retelling of Genesis 32:22-31
You arose during the night, and you sent everyone else to cross the river with everything that you had, so you found yourself alone. You were thrown into the dust and struggled until dawn. You were not overcome, and you were struck between your thighs, and you were injured between your thighs, as you struggled in the dust. Then you heard, Release me, for dawn has come. But you said, I will not release you, unless you bless me. You were asked, Do you know who you are? You answered as well as you could. No, you were told, you have not known yourself, but now you will begin to know, for you have struggled with divinity and with humanity, and you have come through. You said, Please, tell me who you are! And you heard, Why do you ask who I am? Then you were blessed. You called that place The Face, for although you were met face to face in that struggle in the dark, you survived. Because of the injury between your thighs, you were limping as you left The Face. And the sun rose.