When did we stop listening to our dreams, or did we stop dreaming all together?
I'm not talking about dreams, as in goals and desires, I'm referencing our actual dreams.
Throughout history, dreams have been not only powerful influencers in our personal lives, but some dreams have reshaped our entire existence. In ancient Eastern cultures 'dream incubation' was a process of inviting the other world, the second world, to speak to us and to bring us prophecies. Dreaming is referenced numerous times in the Old Testament, such as when Joseph is sold into slavery for telling his brothers his dreams. Native Americans viewed the dream world as a sacred place, and in many tribes, what occurred in dreams was seen as far more critical than what took place in our actual daily lives.
Have we created a world where virtual reality and special effects bring so many fantastical things to life that we no longer see any need for this 'sacred place'? Has our world been contorted and twisted into sound bites and video blurbs that bombard our minds to the point where there is no room left for dreaming?
I think it very interesting that sleep has become such a hot topic within the health and wellness field in the last five years. Obviously, we recognize, as a species, our need to improve the way we sleep but do we know why we sleep.
Is it only to allow the microglial system to clean up the brain waste of the day? Is just a time to enable the mind to process things that were not fully explored or undone throughout our day? Or should we be far more intentional about not only how we sleep, but how also how we dream?
Getting back to dreams that changed the face of the world. Did you know that all of the following were conceived during dreams; the book 'Frankenstein’, the structure of DNA, the sewing machine, Einstein's Theory of Relativity, the structure of the atom, the Periodic table and even Google.
Why have dreams become looked at as 'woo-woo'?
Just as I believe we are becoming consistently more and more detached from nature, we are also becoming more detached from our own human nature. To throw out the notion that an idea that is hatched while we are asleep is any less critical than the idea that we had during our waking hours is merely short-sighted. We have very little understanding of how our thoughts are formulated, let alone our dreams.
It was a tradition within my household, growing up that my mother, my sister, and I would always share our dreams every morning. This takes a bit of courage because some dreams are downright freaky, but when I was a child, I was unaware that sharing dreams is a practice that can help develop the skill of lucid dreaming. Lucid dreaming is the ability to control somewhat what you are dreaming and at the same time, realize that you are in a dream state. In Native American terms, this would be called 'powerful medicine.'
So I encourage to practice better sleep hygiene and prepare your mind to explore your dreams each night, and when you wake in the morning journal what you remember and even better share with others.
Our dreams may be a key to a deeper understanding.