Dear Dream Tending Community,

I would like to offer the first lines from the keynote talk, Awakening Stories, that I offered in China at the 10th Anniversary East/West Conference of the China Society for Analytical Psychology. The conference theme was: Heartfelt Influence and Transformation: The Wisdom of I Ching and Analytical Psychology.

In the world of today, the stories dominating the psyche in contemporary culture orient around war and inevitable extinction. Yet, constellations of countless soul sparks illuminate webs of emerging stories as well. These are Awakening Stories of Heartfelt Influence and Transformation that are sourced in the Deep Imagination and in the Wisdom of the I Ching.

The poet Rilke offers:

“The work of the eyes is done. Go now and do the heart-work on the images imprisoned within you.”

Rilke means imagination when he uses the term heart-work. Heart-work is implied by the hexagram 31.

The image of the hexagram is an old ideograph consisting of two things: HEART and GAIN.

In the image, the heart (xin) is below the image for gain (xian)—so one gains through the heart. There is something to be gained from doing heart-work now.

What I present today comes in part from the work of my new book, The Imagination Matrix. There, I assert that we are born with a living blueprint, the essential design to evolve our imagination. Each of us enters the world with the capacity to make creative leaps of consciousness, and quantum leaps in learning. If ever there was a time and a place to reconnect with the heart-work of imagination, that place is here, and that time is now.

The talk evolved in three parts:

  1. Imaginal Intelligence, (what I name) IQ4
  2. Keeping our Heartfelt Humanity in a Technological World
  3. The Story-Web and the Awakening Stories

To dive deeper into this topic area, join me at an Imagination Matrix Workshop.

In the dreamtime,


Imagination Matrix Workshop

How to Access the Greatest Power You Have for Creativity, Connection, and Purpose

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Led by Dr. Stephen Aizenstat and Mentors of Dream Tending, this program offers a supportive and creative space where you can engage in practices that cultivate your imagination, intuition, and emotional intelligence. Through a combination of experiential learning, group discussions, and individual reflection, you will learn how to honor the wisdom of your dreams and deep imagination. You will learn the ways of working with them as a source of guidance, inspiration, and healing.

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Stephen Aizenstat

Stephen Aizenstat, Ph.D., is founder of Pacifica Graduate Institute, Dream Tending, and the Academy of Imagination. For more than 35 years, he has explored the power of dreams through depth psychology. He has collaborated with Joseph Campbell, Marion Woodman, Robert Johnson, James Hillman, and Native elders worldwide. He is the author of Dream Tending and conducts dreamwork and imagination seminars throughout the US, Europe, and Asia.