In yesterday’s Sun newspaper, there was an intriguing article about a mystery dream man that thousands of people claim to have seen in their dreams. Apparently the man’s face first appeared in a sketch drawn by a dreamer for her psychiatrist.
The dreamer had never met this man in her waking reality but was able to produce a detailed sketch of him from her dreams. Her psychiatrist showed the sketch to other dreamers who also claimed to have seen the man in their dreams and then a website was set up to collect other dream sightings of This Man.
We often dream of people that we don’t know and have never met; these people represent parts of our own identity that are unknown and unfamiliar to us. Dreaming of a strange man indicates that we are becoming aware of previously unknown personal strengths and individual skills.
As I described in Shining and Sensing in How To Dream, we shine our individual awareness out into the spaces around us and try to make sense of what we see reflected back. When we are trying to connect with our deeper strengths and skills, we will often dream of unknown men.
The man in the sketch functions as a reflector of our perceptions about our strengths and this image would be useful as part of an apperception test. Henry Murray and Christiana Morgan produced the first Thematic Apperception Test in the 1930’s and it is used to elicit personal stories and individual myths from a client’s unconscious.
However, the solution to the pervasive appearance of this man is more likely to be found by doing some domain ownership analysis, rather than dream analysis. The domain thisman.org was registered by an Italian marketing agency, guerrigliamarketing.it.
Now Italian isn’t one of my stronger languages, but I’m guessing that guerrigliamarketing.it is some sort of guerilla marketing agency. So rather than This Man being a manifestation of our private myths and public dreams, it is in fact a manufactured viral advertising campaign.