Below the Belt -or- Vampires and Wiccans

James, 18 North American male

I am 18 years old, and have been dating my girlfriend for almost a year. (10 months tomorrow to be exact) I love her very much, and I plan to marry her.

Anyway, in my dream, she and I arrived at a party at someone's house. (I don't know whose.) Once inside, I was confronted by three men wearing black leather jackets. The "leader" of the three had a short black beard and moustache. He and I exchanged words which I do not remember, and then he bared his teeth and said, "I'm a vampire." His canines, both top and bottom, were elongated, more resembling a werewolf than a vampire, now that I think of it. In my dream I thought that he wasn't a real vampire.

Now, I am a Wiccan, and I have a pentacle necklace (that my girlfriend got me, but that's kinda beside the point) that I wear everywhere, including to bed. Anyway, I pulled it from under my shirt and said "I'm a Wiccan." The vampire said something to the effect of "Well, we'll see about that!" and tried to yank my necklace off. It held. I then screamed something that I don't remember and head-butted the vampire. We grappled, and I got him on the floor. I then began punching him, first in the stomach, then in the genitals.

The last thing I remember from the dream was the crowd of party-goers giving groans of sympathy for the vampire.

This dream kinda disturbed me, and I would really appreciate any insight you might be able to shed on it.

Mr. Hagen's Reply: Underworld

"All's fair in love and war"

Your dream seems to be a narrative combination of the horror and supernatural story mixed in with romance. Vampire stories are a collective narrative and can be found from China to Peru. Bram Stoker in 1897 published the most famous of all vampire stories "Dracula". In many of these stories, bloodsucking has usually more to do with charged overtones of love and sexuality than a hunger for blood. The "creature" usually feeds off others both emotionally and psychologically.

Your battle with the vampire seems to indicate some male rivalry, whether real or perceived, between yourself and other men for your girlfriend’s affections. For women the metaphor is frighteningly clear: man is a beast, a primitive, violent animal hiding behind a mask of civility. The public's appetite for such horror stories appears insatiable.

From a popular culture perspective, the horror film "Hannibal" is a testimony to the "cannibal" hiding behind the Chianti. The film franchise that fits the horror fantasy landscape of your dream (although the protagonist/hero is female) are the horror films Underworld (see film trailer).

Your character is one of a witch/Wiccan (with a magical charm) whose violent actions do not seem to evoke sympathy from the crowd (your peer group?). You seem to be cast in the antagonist versus protagonist (hero) role. The collective conflict of love versus hate echoes through generations. The magical power of love can be contrasted by evil, hate and black magic. For the protagonist of love to be successful the poetic codes of chivalry and romance must be invoked. The stock character of the knight-errant does not hit "below the belt".

For a good read: Ezra Pound's "Spirit of Romance."

Hope these thoughts are of help and provide some insight,
Mark H.

All material Copyright 2006 International Institute for Dream Research. All rights reserved.