SOcial Dreaming Matrix Notes #10

Social Dreaming Matrix of 21 January 2021, on zoom, 9.30-10.00 (GMT) followed by 10 mn review. The 10th in the Deepening Creative Practice programme, this one taking place between the autumn season and the winter season.

10 participants

15 Dreams (of which fragments)

7 Associations

The matrix opened with a series of ten dreams, presented in a fast tempo one after the other:

  • Fragment. The dreamer was being hosted by someone unknown, in a city. The floor was not horizontal, going up and down, especially up. The dreamer asked to take a shower. The shower was in a bathtub. As the dreamer entered the tub, sewage water started to rise in it, full of pieces of garbage. The water was too dirty to wash oneself in it, but the dreamer had a small bucket of clean water to use.
  • Image of a disaster, of an apocalypse. Looking from their window, the dreamer saw the usual skyscraper, but this time, one had lost its top, ravaged by a fire. Only the cinder structure was still standing.
  • Fragment. The dreamer is scooting, without moving their legs they move smoothly through the space. They arrive in a ring-like shape, it could have been flowers, but it wasn’t flower, it was creamy yellow, and the dreamer kept scooting.
  • The dreamer is in a house. It’s white everywhere. In a room, a dove and a peacock are trying to get out. The door is open, but they can’t find their way through it. They fly in all directions, and it’s impossible to catch them. As the dreamer tries to catch them, they go through the door and find themselves on the balcony. They realize the house is the house of their old uncle. They still see the peacock trying to escape, but cannot decide whether they should help it or not.
  • The dreamer is working on a presentation as a video recording, at their desk. They want to add a voice over, but it’s difficult. They make some changes and think they succeeded, but a voice comes out of computer, which says “The voice of the narrator”. That voice keeps speaking over the dreamer’s voice, who tries to speak quickly to get ahead of it, but each time “The voice of the narrator” drowns their own voice.
  • The dreamer is in a suite of a hotel room. There are five rooms, a corridor and a bathroom. Outside of the bathroom is some equipment. A creamy yellow hoop, and a lacy thing to protect the hair while doing make-up. There is an anti-room and a common area room, where the dreamer is on their phone. There are bookshelves and other people are interacting with the books. The dreamer receives a whatsapp message in four parts. Each message is a little illustrated story. Suddenly, all the messages merge into one big picture, every message being a piece of the picture. All came together.
  • A dream that comes repeatedly in various forms. The dreamer is walking down the road, always on their own. They come across a mysterious shop, or a club, that seems to be never open, but the dreamer finds themselves inside. They then leave through back door, and come back in again. After a while, they discover that they are no longer allowed to get inside; it has become an exclusive club only open for members.
  • It’s evening, and the dreamer is heading on the dark streets towards a concert hall. They don’t know which one of the two concert halls of the city they should go to, and the concert is supposed to start now. They walk to one concert hall, but it not there, so they keep walking to the other concert hall. When they arrive they see their son on the stage, and the audience is very nervous, the dreamer is clearly late. Their son is relaxed on the stage, and the dreamer realizes that they don’t even know what they should play. But they start to play anyway, and keep playing.
  • The dreamer is with their old chamber choir, singing in an Italian church. More and more people come into the church to find out what is going on. When the dreamer wakes up, they feel really sad to no longer be part of such a group.
  • A dream that resonates with the first dream. The dreamer is in a bathroom and needs a bath. They get into the bath, but a rabbit has already gotten into it, and has done a shit. The dreamer only finds out when they get out of the bath though. The shit is more of a human shit than a rabbit shit. And then the rabbit jumps out of the bathe. They had not realized it was in it, it could have drowned. The dreamer is now with friends, all of them people of colour, the dreamer is the only white person. There is a plant that has been flooded with too much water and is taken over by mildew. The dreamer tries to scrap the mildew away.

This flood of dreams is punctuated by one association:

  • About baths and baptism, the rabbit and religious icons.

Follows another dream:

  • The dreamer is in a room, with a toilet in the middle of it. A very small Indian woman is there too. Yellow boxes are bubbling up in the room, they keep coming. The dreamer realizes that the Indian woman has only one sock on, and that she seems to be looking for the other sock.

Follows a series of three associations:

  • About the film Parasite, which is about an underworld and an overworld, as a parody and comedy. There is a scene in the film in a bathroom, with people crammed in a corner because that’s the only place where they can catch internet, so that they can communicate with whatsapp.
  • About the voice of the narrator and who is telling the story. Who is responsible in the world. The government saying what’s happening, and the news telling the stories. Left with a feeling of being spoken over.
  • About the programmed voice and the AI’s voice on the film A Space Odyssey.

Follows a silence for the first time in this matrix.

Then two more dreams are presented:

  • The dreamer is preparing a presentation, using power point. They realize that all the slides are very detailed with words and images that are all coming from the Harvard Business Review. They realize that they have not acknowledged where the texts and images come from, and they know that the audience will know what the source is. They have no time to adjust, but they make a simple final brilliant slide, representing two interconnected circles that will explain everything. The reader can’t read any text in the two circles.
  • In a room in Africa, a comfortable room in the middle of the jungle. It’s not a house but a container. The dreamer steps out of the room, they have a gun to go for hunting. They shoot, come back in, watch TV. They go out again, watch the sun, come back in, sit on the sofa.

Follows a series of three associations:

  • The last dream is associated with Donald Trump, with a laugh. Orange. Inside. Domesticity. Gun. All this creates a Trumpian view.
  • Rings, circles, union, marriages of men and women, women and women, men and men.
  • A wish to be clean. To wash away dirt and the impossibility of doing that. Things that are normally used to cleanse don’t function, don’t work. Places inside and outside: what are the safe spaces? Animals inside can’t escape. Random shooting in the jungle. Boundaries. What is the boundary?

Follows two more dreams:

  • The dreamer opened a door, which was full of spikes, and dirty. There is a big drop by the door. The dreamer stands on the edge of the drop and manages to step back. Then wakes up.
  • The dreamer is on campus, which looks more like an outdoor campsite with some buildings. The dreamer is with friends, hunting for aliens. But aliens look like random people, so they need to find out who the aliens are. One of the friends they are hunting with is an old friend from college. Everything is mixed up.


The review opens with sighs and expressions of being overwhelmed.

  • There were so many dreams it was difficult to find associations. It connects with the overwhelming nature of everything that is happening right now.
  • A sense of confinement. Emotions of being stuck, getting out, but always coming back to the same feeling of confinement.
  • There was so much, so little space between the dreams. It was hard to reflect. Felt washed along a flood of more and more. There was no time to catch the dreams and hold them.
  • So much of the matrix was related to architecture. Left with: what is the internal world? What is the external world? The two of them are separated and brough together in weird ways.
  • Find myself laughing about the inside and outside, it reminds me of recently homeschooling a 6 and 12 years old, talking about the difference between area and perimeter. How do we discover what the perimeter is?
  • Laughing a lot during the matrix and regretting that my laugh couldn’t be heard. Wanted to share it. Also experienced the sense of flood of dreams. The head was struggling, wondering about associations. When would they come? Somehow, the matrix also resonated with an email a DCP participant had sent recently, which read like a SDM in itself.
  • Perhaps we feel the relentless accumulation of bad things and catastrophes happening again and again, not only in our present, but also in history being revealed, things of the past coming to the surface. Awful things happening out of our control, that threatens us deeply.
  • Powerful metaphors of things coming to the surface, which resonates with the sewage water rising in the bathtub in the first dream. Things are being brought to the surface.
  • Healing elements as present as well: baths, the choir. In all this chaos, we are looking for recovery.

It was good to take the time to write these notes down right after the matrix, reading and re-reading the dreams, taking them in little by little, starting to hold them. The richness of them comes across as thick, thick with the intensity of emotions that we traverse, individually, collectively, and in this space of naked exchange that the SDM provides.

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