Advent Calender Day 10: Fireplace
Welcome to the tenth day of the Dream Well advent calendar! Today we have a special request to look at the symbol of a fireplace in dreams. What a wonderful warming image to find behind day 10 of the advent calendar!
Fire itself is a very primal symbol, and holds universal significance to human beings across the globe. Fire is both a destroyer and sustainer of life. Fire protects against wild animals and enables food to be cooked. Fire originally enabled people to see in the dark, and for this reason has profound connections with divinity and the concept of enlightenment. Fire purifies, both physically, through killing germs, but also metaphorically, when the “fire of the divine” casts out immoral or harmful thoughts or feelings. We associate fire with our greatest passions, from rage, to human love, to love of God. The element of fire is associated with the spark of life itself.
So what then, does it mean to dream of a fireplace? A fireplace indicates a domestication of this wild and primitive power. To dream of a fireplace can symbolise a taming of wild creative powers, of harnessing a great internal energy and focusing it for a practical purpose.
A fireplace can be the heart of the home. To dream of a fireplace can ask us where our heart is, where our sense of home is. Where do you feel you truly belong? Is there something calling you home? Fireplace dreams can occur when we are starting or building a family or when we have been traveling (either literally, or else on a spiritual journey) and are nearing the end and ready to return home. The ancient goddess of the hearth, Hestia, would not participate with the normal processions of the gods, for she stayed home to keep the hearth fire burning. In this sense, we are reminded that a fireplace can be a symbol of constancy, of a centre that is immovable and therefore provides a compass, both physically and morally, to our worldly wanderings.
A fireplace can be a place of gathering, a place where friends and family meet to relax, and to enjoy each other’s company. If we dream of a gathering at the fireplace, it may be a time to focus on friends and family, a time for peace and calm, and less for adventures and risk. A fireplace in our dreams may indicate a gathering not of people but of our own internal resources, or of restoring strength and vitality after a period of strain and stress.
On the other hand, a fireplace can be a place for quiet solitary contemplation. Dreams of being alone by the fire may be a sign of turning inwards, of connecting with our own divine natures or even our creative muse. The fireplace, and those associated with fire such as the goddess Brigid are also linked with lofty skills such as wisdom, craftsmanship and poetry. A fireplace in a dream may symbolise the refining of skills, achieving mastery or eloquence of expression. It may also be a symbol of healing, or of finding a sense of sustenance and nourishment, especially of our spiritual natures.
Fireplace dreams are usually comforting, warming dreams. When we have been feeling lost, or out in the cold, fireplace dreams remind us that there is a safe and welcoming place we can return to. A fireplace in our dreams remind us that the domestic, the homely and family are essential and rewarding aspects to our lives, but that even amongst such seemingly everyday concepts, we can still find the spark of the divine and the most rewarding creative elements of all.
For reflection, perhaps this poem by WB Yeats may be of interest.
Image courtesy of Karin Fain at http://karinteresafaingallery15.ning.com/photo/woman-dreaming/prev?context=user