The Dreamer

April 25th, 2010 Comments

Since I was a kid in the hospital, with nothing to do, I’ve enjoyed a good maze.  I enjoyed solving mazes so much, that when I was older, I would draw my own.  To me, a maze, like a labyrinth, is a representation of life’s journey.  The first time I solved a maze in a dream was quite significant – it started me on a personal study of dreams and their meanings.

In fact, like many, I am fascinated by dreams.  To me, dreaming is like going to the movies, but a whole lot cheaper!  I love to dream and I love the revelations that sometimes emerge.  In fact, in my reading, I learned that many great inventions were the result of dreams.  And many people who have been stuck by problems were able to find solutions while dreaming.

During the past week, as I’ve experienced fever and chills, and then with the addition of a powerful antibiotic a few days ago, I’ve been dreaming a lot.  Probably no more than normal, but because of the wakefulness, I’ve been more conscious of the dreams.  One time though, The Wife was so concerned by my erratic breathing, that she checked my pulse and then woke me up.  It’s been a week of sweating, sleeping, and dreaming.

Today I was reading an article in the New York Times about Learning While You Dream.  The article reminded me specifically of a PC-based video game I used to play.  Descent was perfect for me, because it was a 3D puzzle with 27+ levels – plus the challenge of the game.  It took me several months to get through all the levels, and often I would dream space mines and robots during that time.  For me, it was a great escape.  But it solidified the part that dream played in solving problems.  This NYT’s article, and the study mentioned, was a replica of my experience!

Dreaming gives me the freedom to be what I am becoming!”

Dreaming is a safe, adventurous way to experience the realities of life, in a fantastic venue.  I learned a long time ago to take control of my dreams and change their outcomes – I’ve not had a nightmare since.  Beyond puzzles and fantasy video games, I learn most about social situations, an area where I seem to lack skill.  Dreaming gives me the freedom to be what I am becoming.

I don’t know why we were created to dream, but I certainly know that I’m a lot happier – and successful – when I dream.  In fact, despite this infection, I really enjoyed my sweat-laden dreams this past week.  Healthy living, serenity, and a good night’s sleep allow me the space to dream.  New research backs up a long-held assumption, and previous anecdotes, that dreaming helps me navigate the proper course.  It’s also an awesome creative outlet!

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