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Down the Tiger's Throat

Dreamed 1994/4/12 by Chris Wayan

Dream: I'm walking with a tiger-woman who has laryngitis. We're inspecting red fleshy caves that are her magnified lungs--looking for the cause of her illness.

I'm walking through strange, branching tunnels with my friend Xanthe. She's a tiger woman.

She whispers to me (I'm glad she figured out a high-protein vegetarian diet, because regular tigerbreath is pretty bad) "I've been having trouble speaking aloud, and breathing deep, and ROARING!"

Devastating for a tiger to be mute.

Is something blocking her windpipe, or is it her lungs? I'm trying to figure out the problem. This is a golden opportunity (well, stripy black-and-golden) to examine her throat, since these passages we're walking through ARE her throat and lungs!

We're on an inspection tour.

We come to the archway of her trachea. I try to hold it open, lifting the fold that blocks it, on my shoulders, like a droopy stage curtain.

We haven't seen a single sign of swollen, misshapen or discolored tissue--not anywhere! This is not a medical problem. This blockage is emotional. Embarrassment, I think. A tracheal or throat muscle that clenches now, and must be taught to relax, if Xanthe is to roar again.

Diagnosis narrowed! So it's been useful, walking down the tiger's throat.

I wake thinking "Another job well done."


I call Xanthe, wondering if the dream was literal and she's got a throat problem, but no answer. Leave a message.


Xanthe calls back at last. I can barely hear her. She's sick with a horrible sore throat. It started the night when I had the dream! I read it to her, and the following night's "How to Heal" dream too...

She says the stress that caused the illness DID start from an episode that triggered her hyperactive, false, trained sense of shame. She was pretty sure of that already, but it's nice to have it confirmed from the, um, inside.

LISTS AND LINKS: dream creatures - animal people - tigers, lions, pumas... - Xanthe dreams - shamanic dreams - diagnostic dreams - vanity or legitimate pride? - chthonic (underworld) dreams - The Ness Man, or, How to Heal - clearer psychic dreams - more Xanthe

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