Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Dreams Around the World

I read this article that takes a look at how dreams are viewed by cultures as widespread as the Maya, classical Greeks, Hindus, and Aborigines.

Raw Story:

For many years, I've payed close attention to my dreams. Ever since my teenage years, I've tried to look into the symbolism and imagery behind the situations that my dream self experiences. As a window to the subconscious, I analyze these dream states and use them to better understand my own mind.

The Monkey Buddha Archives:

Part of the trick to analyzing dreams is to remember them in the first place. By focusing on your dreams when you immediately wake, and recording what you can remember (if possible), it becomes easier to recall them. For dreams that I find to be particularly significant, I will make a voice memo on my phone recounting the dream, while it's still fresh in my mind.

After many years of trying to cultivate awareness & memory of my dreams, I have had many interesting experiences as my body sleeps.

Probably the most striking dreams are lucid dreams, in which I have become conscious of the fact that I'm dreaming. In these lucid dreams, a person realizes they are in a dream, and can even control certain aspects of the situation or environment. For instance, during times where I realized I was dreaming & became lucid- I was able to run at super speeds, smash stone counter tops, and even fly.

Taking flight in lucid dreams have been the most exhilarating experiences that I've encountered in the sleeping state. Remembering how to fly in a dream usually feels like getting on a bike after a long time. You might be a little wobbly at first, but quickly gain your bearings. I have soared through trees, into the clouds, and it felt as real as my waking life. I always marvel at the ability of the human mind to simulate this kind of superhuman feat in such a convincing & realistic way.

I can see how people throughout time & around the world would have been fascinated by the crazy experiences that dreams bring to the human experience. The fact that there is convincing evidence that animals dream shows that dreaming is a function of the complex energetic patterns of the brain.

As we discover more about the brain, & how it gives rise to the mind, the mysteries of the dream world will be uncovered. However, I think that just as consciousness may never be completely understood, the full implication of dreams will likely remain mysterious for a long time.

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