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Inner Work: Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth Paperback – September 1, 2009


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Inner Work: Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth + Owning Your Own Shadow: Understanding the Dark Side of the Psyche + We: Understanding the Psychology of Romantic Love
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 221 pages
  • Publisher: Harper & Row (September 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062504312
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062504319
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,461 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

In this book Johnson introduces a simple four-step method aimed at helping us explore the unconscious. He encourages us to pinpoint the symbols that appear in our dreams and active imaginings; to note our conscious associations to these symbols; meaningfully to personalize what we have accomplished in these first two steps; and finally through rituals to translate the insights gained into memorable conscious experiences. By providing clear instructions, with illustrations, he gives us a feeling for inner work, making it feasible without reliance on formal analysis. Johnson's well-written book should appeal both to general readers and to specialists in the field. Paul D. Huss, Psychology & Clinical Studies Dept., Andover Newton Theological Sch., Newton Centre, Mass.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Robert A. Johnson, a noted lecturer and Jungian analyst, is also the author of He, She, We, Inner Work, Ecstasy, Transformation, and Owning Your Own Shadow.


More About the Author

Robert A. Johnson, a noted lecturer and Jungian analyst, is also the author of He, She, We, Inner Work, Ecstasy, Transformation, and Owning Your Own Shadow.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 70 customer reviews
I appreciate Johnson's writing so much that I have read all his books.
Roberto Lima Netto
Robert Johnson's book on Inner Work is just that, a book that is a guide to finding and communicating with the inner self - the true you.
Karen Kegley
I was relatively new to dream interpretation and Active Imagination, when this book was recommended to me by some therapists.
"alabasterwoman"

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

124 of 126 people found the following review helpful By Blake S. on April 29, 2001
Format: Paperback
Before "Inner Work" I had read a few other dream interpretation books all of which basically described certain recurring dream images and labelled them with a limited definition: basically they were the "Teacher's Edition" to understanding your dreams with the answers in the back. I never understood how an image, say a snake or falling, could be interpreted in basically the same way by so many different people. Johnson explains why you can't. Images are personal and have to be interpreted by the dreamer and Johnson describes how to use "active imagination" to not only figure out what your dreams mean but how they can help along your life journey. This book really helped me tap into the "invisible" part of my consciousness and make practical, healthy changes in my life and prayer. His comparison of archetypes (universally shared images) and personal symbols was most appreciated. Complex ideas are explained in a way that any neophyte to dream analysis can understand and apply to your own life. Johnson explains how to make practical and physical changes by conversing with your dreams.
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68 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Mary Wendell on January 7, 2014
Format: Paperback
In my efforts to understand and deal with my child's nightmares, I have found respite in Robert Johnson's Inner Work. I have trusted his books for some time because he has a gift for using Jungian principles and keeping things simple. By using archetypal comparisons rather than personal anecdotes, his approach to teaching you how to explore dreams is direct and unbiased. He offers an overview of necessary terms and reminds us (quoting from Carl Jung) that "God speaks in dream."

This book does not claim to be the ultimate book on dream analysis but it gives you the tools to explore your unconscious in his 4-step to Active Imagination. His approach to understanding symbols empowers you to make your own definitions and associations, rather than telling you what they mean universally, because everyone is different - and that is so the case with my daughter.

If you are looking to develop the understanding your mind at sleep, this is a great introduction. I would also suggest The Nightmare Solution for other approaches on working out your dreams and We, He, and She by Robert Johnson.
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136 of 143 people found the following review helpful By crc@dtls.com on March 21, 1999
Format: Paperback
One night I had a dream that I was a pitcher on a softball team. My older brother was playing first base and yelling abusive things about me like, "Get him out of there! He don't know what he's doing!" I went to pitch the ball, drew my arm back and saw someone standing between the pitchers mound and home plate. He had on a ball cap and was standing with his head down so I couldn't identify who it was. I couldn't pitch with him there. That is where the dream ended. The following evening I decided to follow some of the suggestions from Inner Work and see if the identity of "the man in the way" would be revealed. I went back and relived the dream. At the point I was ready to pitch the ball, I stopped and walked up to him. I asked him to reveal to me who he was. He slowly raised his head and I found myself staring into my own face. I realized form that experience that I was "standing in my own way!" I asked myself to move out of the way, and went back to pitch the game. Previously I had thought it was the messages embedded in my psychic memory from verbally abusive types, particularly my older brother. This work revealed to me where the problem really originated. Since this work I have been able to return to school, recieve a degree in Fine Art, and am now embarking on publication of a book of my artwork. I have moved out of my own way as a result of the suggestions from this book. I highly recommend this for anyone wishing to resolve specific problems in their life. I gave it 5 stars. See them here *****.
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92 of 98 people found the following review helpful By Karen Kegley on July 10, 2001
Format: Paperback
Everyone, I'm told, has dreams during sleep whether they are remembered or not. Some people dream in color (I do), others in black and white only. Robert Johnson's book on Inner Work is just that, a book that is a guide to finding and communicating with the inner self - the true you. Our lives are so fragmented today, we are all encouraged to "multi-task" - housewives frequently talk on the phone while doing the dishes, busy executives shave while driving; other people type on laptop computers while flying to a destination. I believe that some of our time-saving measures are cheating us out of living in reality - of enjoying this present moment.
Robert Johnson encourages his readers to take the time to establish communication with the inner self, to find out what obstacles exist to accomplishing life-goals; to discover the steps that must be taken; to deal with underlying fears; to strengthen foundations and build new bridges to deeper levels of the unconscious self,and then release the energy that needs expression. It truly is a journey of Inner Work.
I am still in the process of reading and working through this book. I'm sure it'll take a while longer, but it's been worth every bit of the time I've spent on it. I am changed, I am different, the quality of my life is richer, and I am definitely more in touch with who I am, with my current existence and presence.
This book is a must for anyone whose life has whirled into the outer limits. Take the time and do it properly. You have everything to gain.
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