Friday, September 05, 2008

Coast to Coast AM

Rodger recently appeared on Coast to Coast AM, hosted by Ian Punnett.
The show included an hour and a half of interview.. it was originally supposed
to be 2 hours but there were so many callers lined up to share their dreams that
an extra half hour of calls was added.

You can find out more information about the show, and downloads are available

As soon as the show was over, Rodger got into his car with his wife and evacuated.
As dawn came up, he was headed over the Rigolets.. on a narrow two lane bridge,
beautiful sight.. strange.. fleeing Gustav.

Rodger is back home now, but waiting for his power to come on.
As for Coast to Coast, the response was tremendous.. this is a great group
of listeners.. fascinating people.

Friday, August 29, 2008


Are you interested in doing Archetypal Dreamwork?
It's a serious venture one-on-one, exploring your deepest feelings
and discovering the hidden path to the soul.
Dream sessions are typically an hour long, either by telephone
or in person on a weekly basis.
If you are interested in working with Rodger or one of the other
dreamwork therapists associated with North of Eden, you
can contact him at dreams (at)

For more information please go to

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Would you like to learn more about one of your dreams?

North of Eden, the wonderful group of Archetypal Dreamwork therapists that I studied with is offering you that opportunity. You can SUBMIT A DREAM and one of the dreamwork experts will respond within a day or so.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Bill St. Cyr's Dreamwork Therapy page

Bill St. Cyr is an archetypal dreamwork therapist colleague
from North of Eden. He's posted a website with lots of good
information about doing dreamwork, and about his own work
and journey.
Bill is a great guy and a great teacher of dreamwork.
He works one on one with clients and also leads strings,
at the North of Eden retreat.
For more about Bill and dreamwork visit his

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Monday, April 21, 2008

Thursday, March 20, 2008


Cry Out for the Fate of the Tibetan People Opinion
By Rodger Kamenetz
The Forward opinion editorial
Thu. Mar 20, 2008

Next month at Seder, we will recall how Egypt made the lives of the Children of Israel “bitter.” We will remember how “the children of Israel groaned… and cried out” and that “God heard their moaning.”
But this week we heard the groaning of the Tibetan people.
The Tibetans have no Seder, but they commemorate their history of oppression every year by remembering March 10. On that date in 1959, more than 100,000 Tibetans spontaneously demonstrated to protect the Dalai Lama from a death threat. He barely escaped the capital of Lhasa with his life, and in the uprising that followed it is believed that more than 10,000 Tibetans died.
Every year since, Tibetans remember March 10 with mostly peaceful demonstrations. This year in Lhasa was no different, until riots broke out and furious young Tibetans burned shops and murdered ethnic Han Chinese shopkeepers.
What happened that drove the Tibetan people to violence?
Theirs is a tragic history of cultural genocide. First the Chinese came with troops in 1949. Later they shelled the ancient Buddhist monasteries, which they’ve more recently rebuilt to serve as tourist traps.
Today’s Tibetan monks are tightly controlled and humiliated Ρ they must publicly disavow the Dalai Lama, which is like asking rabbis to renounce the Torah. The government has reached deep into the religious life of Tibet with clumsy hands, yet somehow the old religion of Tibet still lives.
Along with cultural destruction has come a massive influx of Han Chinese immigrants, who now far outnumber native Tibetans in Lhasa. The political and economic systems favor the immigrants, and Chinese rule has made the lives of today’s young Tibetans bitter.
Every people, if their groaning is never heard, has a breaking point, and this past week’s dramatic outburst of violence should be put in the context of 50 years of patient nonviolence.
From his home in exile in the northern Indian city of Dharamsala, the Dalai Lama has loudly and clearly condemned the violence. But he has no power at this point to control it.
The Chinese know this very well, but to cover up the harshness of their treatment of Tibetans they have trotted out the tired old propaganda of a “Dalai clique” fomenting an uprising. The fact is that the anger that has spilled over in Lhasa is a heartfelt response by a genuine popular movement — and it is spreading to neighboring provinces, where more than three-fourths of ethnic Tibetans now live.
The Dalai Lama is not behind the violence, he grieves over it, for he knows as a Buddhist that it only begets more violence — and that chapter is now unfolding.
The Chinese government has shut down the phone lines and Internet connections in Tibet, shut out the press and expelled tourists. Now the army has moved in.
What happens next — the roundup of civilians, the imprisonments, the killings — will take place in the dark. When the lights come back on, just as after Tiananmen Square, the victims will be out of sight, killed or hidden away in dank prisons.
As Jews we know in our bones how it feels to be oppressed and murdered while the whole world stands silent — and we ought to cry out for the fate of the Tibetan people.
In 1997, the Dalai Lama and I sat together over matzo with Rabbi David Saperstein and a table full of Washington dignitaries for a Passover “Seder for Tibet.” We shared the great promise of the Seder — that someday all people will be liberated from oppression. We heard the four questions and wept at the unforgettable voices of teenage Tibetan nuns singing of freedom, in a recording smuggled out of the dreadful Drapchi Prison.
We concluded the Seder in solidarity: “Next year in Jerusalem! Next year in Lhasa!”
For decades, the Dalai Lama has maintained his religious ideals while struggling to negotiate with the Chinese superpower. It’s hard not to think of Moses negotiating with Pharaoh.
As I listened to him recently on the news, pleading with his own people for an end to their violence, I felt how poignant and difficult his position is: The world praises him, but has given him no usable power.
The groaning of the Tibetans is not heard. It feels as if his dream is broken.
Our “Seder for Tibet” in 1997 was a Seder of hope — hope that the Dalai Lama’s inspiring message of nonviolence would be heard, that just this once another miracle would happen. I thought back then we did it for the Tibetans. I think now we did it also for us, because our hope for Tibetan freedom resonates deeply with our own deepest hopes.
The liberation from Egyptian bondage was not a Jewish military operation or armed resistance struggle. It was a demonstration of divine grace.
One midrash tells us that God liberated us by miracle, so our people would not learn to rely on the way of the fist. Another teaches universal compassion. When the Egyptians drowned in the sea, the angels rejoiced, but God rebuked them: “My children are drowning, and you sing?”
These beautiful stories and their like have shaped our Jewish souls. We share with Tibetans an ideal of human compassion that bonds us to the Dalai Lama’s religion of kindness. Over the past 50 years, however, Jewish history seems to have taught a very different lesson.
The State of Israel was born not long before the invasion of Tibet. For many years now our trust has been in military power for Israel, and in personal aggression for ourselves that we praise as chutzpah. But as the Dalai Lama implicitly asked those of us who traveled to Dharamsala in 1990 for Jewish-Tibetan dialogue, what happens if a people survives but loses its ideals?
There is no easy answer to that very Buddhist question. Nor to the very Jewish one we asked him in reply: What happens to the ideals if the people fail to survive?

Rodger Kamenetz is the author of “The Jew in the Lotus” (HarperOne, 1995) and “The History of Last Night’s Dream” (HarperOne, 2007).

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Review in The Christian Century

Amy Frykholm, writing in the February 26, 2008 issue of
The Christian Century, writes:

"Rodger Kamenetz's vividly honest and well-reswearched book on dreams
in Western culture is extraordinary--
in part for its defiance of genre...Before I read it had heard
Kamenetz refer to it as a memoir, but it as much
an argument for a paradigm shift in dream interpretation. It is also
part self-help book and part detective
story about the lost dreams of the monotheistic traditions And none of
these categorizations touches on the
fact that it is also a study of human heart and an appeal for its

Here's the whole review on line:

The History of Last Night's Dream: Discovering the Hidden Path to the Soul.(Book review)
From: The Christian Century | Date: 2/26/2008 | Author: Frykholm, Amy

The History of Last Night's Dream: Discovering the Hidden Path to the Soul. By Rodger Karnenetz. HarperCollins, 272 pp., $24.95.

Rodger Kamenetz's vividly honest and well-researched book on dreams in Western culture is extraordinary--in part for its defiance of genre, a defiance that will no doubt make some readers uneasy. Before I read it, I had heard Kamenetz refer to it as a memoir, but it is as much an argument for a paradigm shift in dream interpretation. It is also part self-help book and part detective story about the lost dreams of the monotheistic traditions. And none of these categorizations touches on the fact that it is also a study of the human heart and an appeal for its transformation.

Kamenetz is known for his 1995 book, The Jew in the Lotus, about his physical and spiritual journey as part of a historic visit between Jewish rabbis and a Tibetan delegation that included the Dalai Lama. Some years later, Kamenetz, who has been called a formidable Jewish poet, began to research dreams in the Western tradition, starting with Genesis and every commentary ever written on it. Meanwhile, he encountered Colette Aboulker-Muscat, whose dream work for healing purposes in Jerusalem had become legendary.

As Kamenetz worked on dreams, he discovered the transformative power of images. In the first part of the book, he sets dreams in the context of art, religion, psychology and science; as well as personal experience. Kamenetz argues that though Judaism, Christianity and Islam have been known as "religions of the book," there is another aspect of these faiths that has had many episodes: the conflict between words and images. Words--which represent orthodoxy and inherited certainty--have almost always won.

In the second part of the book, "Interpretations," Kamenetz hits his stride. He begins with what he calls the three seminal dreams of Genesis: Abimelech's warning dream, Jacob's promise dream and Joseph's identity dream. He devotes a chapter to each one, exploring the dimensions of each kind of dream. He then turns to how the dream is lost through interpretation, making the figure of Joseph fundamental to this shift. When Joseph, as a young man, dreamed of a shaft of wheat standing erect while 11 other shafts bowed, Joseph's brothers did the malicious interpreting and the image remained ambiguous. But later, Joseph was the dream interpreter extraordinaire and all dreams became formulas.

As Kamenetz traces the religious tradition of dream interpretation, he finds an anxiety about the disturbing nature of dreams and a desire by religious authorities to overwrite and ameliorate dreams through various kinds of textual and ritual performances. To explore this, he looks at the rabbinic tradition, considers the Gnostic conflict in Christianity and-in what was for me one of the most fascinating chapters of the book--boldly takes on Freud, the father of modern dream interpretation, and rereads Freud's own dreams.

The third part of the book, called "Dreams," is the most deeply personal exploration as Kamenetz takes the reader through images in his own dreams that had powerfully transformative effects. Kamenetz repeatedly says that his own relationship to dreams stems from a 2001 encounter with a particular teacher, and he now brings that relationship into full focus. When Kamenetz met Mark Bregman, Bregman was a rural Vermont postman by day and a dream teacher by night. Bregman's theories of dreams owe a great deal to Jung, and Kamenetz explores this relationship in some detail, but they are also uniquely Bregman's own. For Kamenetz, the process of working through dreams becomes a very individual, religious sort of practice. "This dream practice has no fixed ceremonies, no creeds or beliefs--just dreaming and waking, and learning what is in the heart."

This comment suggests a familiar anticlerical and self-focused practice that we know perhaps too well from a multitude of self-help literature. But it conceals the metaphysics that lurk in the background. By the time the full metaphysics of this dream work arrives in the text, the reader is mostly prepared. I was surprised to see that the themes of divine grace, dying to self, and compassion still play prominent roles in the dream work laid out by Bregman. The purpose of dream work, according to Bregman, is not self-actualization but to demonstrate the state of the soul in relation to God and to teach the soul through an increasingly open and compassionate heart how to enter into a relationship with God. Besides offering that insight (and here Bregman will no doubt make many a modern reader uncomfortable), the main purpose of dream work is obedience: "Obedience means to be. To be what? To be other than your ego. To have died." That is what our dreams teach us.

At this point, Kamenetz returns to the three dreams of Genesis. Through Abimelech, Jacob and Joseph, we see the three main kinds of dreams at work in Bregman's theory: dreams reveal our predicament (Abimelech), teach us who we are (Joseph) and help us explore the realm of the soul (Jacob). All of this exploration requires a lot of hard work and sustained attention, and Kamenetz is honest about his own struggle to have faith. He also confesses that dreams have worked on him and transformed him. Readers are left to struggle with the implications, but no one who reads this book will ever understand dreams the same way again.

Reviewed by Amy Frykholm, special correspondent for the CENTURY.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Forward-- Jay Michaelson

If Ostriker’s book rails against the flattening of biblical consciousness into stark, fundamentalist myth, then Kamenetz’s new volume, “The History of Last Night’s Dream,” makes the same argument about our souls — particularly, the parts of ourselves that dream. For Kamenetz, the Freudian tendency to reduce dreams to certain basic, usually sexual symbols — and, perhaps by extension, the neuroscientific one to reduce them to meaningless chatter — denies the fullness of dream life, and its potential to unlock deep secrets of the mind. Dreams are, in a way, nonsense — but as non-sense, they gesture to the inexpressible in a way that words cannot.

As Kamenetz acknowledges, this is a quintessentially poetic task. The poet, too, seeks to speak what cannot be spoken; the literal “meanings” of poetry are, as the Zohar says of the Bible, but the outer garments of the truth. For Kamenetz — who boldly asserts what others might term an idolatrous passion for the image — dreams do it even better, bypassing language entirely to give us visions of prophecy, even of God. They allow us to imagine, literally; to make image. And, Kamenetz argues, they have played a role in the history of religions for millennia, which he describes in (partial) detail.

Kamenetz may be familiar to readers as the author of the book “The Jew in the Lotus: A Poet’s Rediscovery of Jewish Identity in Buddhist India” (1997). Like that book, “Dream” is at once affable and audacious; Kamenetz is a reliable narrator in unreliable territory. But I want to suggest that Kamenetz’s poetic eye is alive and well in this work of nonfiction. Not only is its subject ultimately the imagination; it locates the ground of spirituality within the imagination, and dares to posit religion itself as a product of the imaginal faculties. What more poetic gesture could there be than that?