The Dream Tarot
A Seven-Day Residential Workshop
In creating the ‘Dream Tarot’ workshop, Paul Rebillot’s inspiration was to combine structural elements of a classical Tarot ‘Life Reading’ with his own powerfully original approach – a fusion of Gestalt Process with ritual, drama, art, movement, music and meditation – offering us a new, creative way of bringing our dreams to life, and life to our dreams.
Dreams: Do you sometimes wake up puzzled by strange or haunting images from a dream that you have just had? Do these images nag at you during the waking day, hinting that they have something important to tell you …. if only you could find a way to decode them?
If so, you are not alone. Our fascination with our dreams has a very long history. The first known examples of recorded dreams were written down about 5,000 years ago in Mesopotamia using cuneiform (one of the earliest known writing systems) on baked clay tablets.
‘The Dream Tarot’ is a workshop on dreams – how to listen to them, how to express them, how to work with them, how to play with them, and how to use them as guides. Even people who normally ‘don’t dream’ can learn ways to remember and explore their own dream landscapes.
Opinions about the meaning of dreams have varied from century to century, from culture to culture. In classical Greece and Rome, for instance, it was believed that dreams were prophetic messages from the gods, or from the dead. In many pre-modern cultures, dreams were initiatory experiences at important thresholds in life. Freud famously regarded dreams as “the royal road to the unconscious” a view broadly shared by C.J. Jung and by Fritz Perls, the founder of Gestalt Therapy. Perls, however, saw dreams as the royal road to integration. In both Jungian and Gestalt practice, dream images are seen as creative expressions of hidden psychic material, and the dream as a channel for important messages to ourselves that surge upwards into awareness from the depths of our unconscious. As Perls said – “You are the maker of the dream. Whatever you put into the dream must be what is in you.”
Dreams reveal our inner experience, illuminate aspects of our lives, and come in the service of wholeness – individual and collective.
We will work with dream material experientially – not relying on interpretations from anyone other than the dreamer themselves. This puts us in touch with our own deepest creative energy, with our instinct for self-healing, and guides us to direction and purpose in our life. Dreams offer us the possibility of re-owning projected and disowned parts of ourselves, of becoming more whole.
The Tarot: Mystics and others have drawn on the symbolism of the highly evocative images of Tarot cards for divination and fortune-telling from the 1700s onwards. The archetypal images in a Tarot deck can act as visual portals to the unconscious, and provide us with ways of accessing our intuitive self. In a Tarot reading, the cards are positioned in a ritual structure known as a ‘spread’ and the process of meditating on the symbolism of the images can shine new light on the reader’s life, and open up new meaning for them. In the Dream Tarot workshop your own personal Tarot cards can in this way deepen and expand the exploration of your dream .
As a participant in this workshop, you will –
- Design a series of ‘personal tarot’ cards with images that come from your dreams rather than from the traditional Tarot deck.
- Learn an expanded form of Gestalt Process that you can apply to reading your personal dream cards and, if you wish, the classic Tarot as well.
- Bring your dreams alive, staging them as you would a play, with yourself and other members of the group playing the roles.
- Dance your dreams to completion, discovering what they are telling you in relation to the most important questions in your life.