Are you listening to your dreams? Dreams can tell you all sorts of things! They can give you insight into your path, ideas to use to expand creativity, and warnings to save you grief or disease. They can also help you solve problems. Here are some famous examples.
- Mary Shelley had a vivid waking nightmare in 1816 that turned into the first piece of science fiction, Frankenstein.
- In the Bible, Joseph was warned in a dream to leave Egypt. Because he heeded this dream, Jesus escaped the slaughter of all male babies.
- Dmitry Mendeleyev created the periodic table based on information he gleaned from a dream.
- James Watson had a dream of two snakes chasing their tales. This visual lead him to discover the structure of DNA.
- Poet Edgar Allen Poe was plagued with nightmares and took many of his literary ideas from this source.
- Elias Howe was working on creating the sewing machine but couldn’t figure out how to make it work. The solution came to him in a dream.
- On March 15, Julius Caesar’s wife warned him not to go to the Senate that day based on visions she had while asleep. He went, and the rest is history.
- Pontius Pilate’s wife also had a dream that Jesus wasn’t guilty. Her dream influenced Pilate’s behavior during Jesus’ trial.
- Abraham Lincoln saw his death in his dreams just a few days before he was assassinated.
- The Roman emperor Caligula also dreamt his death. He was assassinated the next day.
- The same almost happened to Hitler. He had a nightmare. So he, got up to take a walk, and a few moments later, a shell landed in his trench killing all who were in the same area he just left.
Your dreams are probably not that dramatic, but they could be! If you’re not paying attention, you could be missing out on a lot of information that you could use to guide your life.
For instance, if your dreams are simply a replay of the day’s events, this could be a sign that you’re not getting adequate rest. Some feel that we all have these processing type dreams, but then dreams move on to other subject matters. If all you have are these “throw away dreams,” you may need to sleep more.
Another explanation for throw away dreams is that your life is not all that exciting. Your dreams are a reflection of your presence. If you put garbage in your mind, you get garbage out. So, if this is you, perhaps you need to slow down. Smell the coffee. See the roses. Read a book. Get out of the grind and so something different.
If you’re having the same dream over and over again, either exactly or a repeating theme, your unconscious is probably trying to tell you something important. Listen! If you repeatedly dream that trash is piling up, you probably need to take out the trash – either literally or figuratively. If you keep dreaming that you want to fly but something is holding you back, find out what it is! Overcome it.
How fanciful or spectacular is your dream imagery? This can tell you a lot about how structured or imaginative your reality is. Wild visuals with no pattern and no apparent meaning and/or nightmares could be a sign of mental illness. (This could be due to poor gut flora). Dreams with no deviation from every day life could be a sign of a lack of imagination or too much routine.
As hinted at above, your dreams could be warnings. The clue to this is how you feel upon awakening. Calpurnia (Caesar’s wife) and Pontius Pilate’s wife both had dreams so disturbing that they told their husband’s about them. Then thought it was so important that they urged a particular action. Warning dreams tend to have that sort of impact. They aren’t just scary or curious. They tend to be more emotionally powerful. This doesn’t mean that you should act on every dream that disturbs. However, the more attention you pay to your dreams, the easier it becomes to discern the difference.
Dreams are an integral part of life. They are a reflection of you. They are also a free communication tool from your unconscious to your conscious that you can use for self discovery and growth. It’s not a one way communication. You can ask your dreams for answers. They show you what is hidden from you every night. Why not use them purposefully?