Thursday, March 29, 2012

Tapping Into Your Creative Dreamtime

After reading about and participating in discussions of dreams this week, I decided to talk about dreams. Everyone wants to know either what their dreams mean or how to stop the nightmares or simply how to have a dream. I will get to the how-to in a minute.

Dream interpretation dates back somewhere between 5000 – 3000 B.C. when dreams were recorded on clay tablets. Like the aborigines of today, primal societies did not make distinctions between the dream world and reality. It was all woven together, like a conversation with nature, the soul or the god(s). The realm of dreams was a more powerful reality, heightened by symbolic interpretations.

There must be hundreds of dream books, well dozens anyway, for interpreting your dreams, but I have come to the conclusion that you are the only one who can accurately interpret your own dreams. Dreams are from your mind and no one else knows your mind like you do.

Having said that, some dreams transcend the individual mind and are prophetic in nature. The dreamer dreams of something outside himself that is about to happen in our three dimensional world.

Sometimes we can have the same dream repeatedly because a conflict depicted or symbolized in the dream remains unresolved or ignored. Once a solution to the problem has been found, the recurring dream usually ceases.
For an explanation of all the different types of dreams visit Dream Central .

More modern ideas about dreams are that they are emanations from the unconscious or subconscious—telling us something or reflecting back our frustrations or as an explanation for the stresses of our life and a dream can be useful as a guide to help us in critical situations (as in PTSD).

Because of his extensive study of myths and archetypes, be sure to check out Joseph Campbell’s thoughts on dreams. 
Each of the early cultures (Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Middle Eastern) had their take on dreams, as do the modern philosophers (more detailed information on that at Dream History)

And then there is lucid dreaming, which simply put, is knowing you are dreaming while you are asleep. When you are in that state, you can control your dreams. I’ve had a few lucid dreams in my life, usually just before waking up, where I knew I was dreaming and could choose to wake up or continue dreaming while making conscious choices as to where the dream would go. (The way I induce lucid dreaming is to impress upon my mind the thought that I will have a lucid dream, as I fall asleep.) 
For more detailed instructions on how to induce lucid dreaming go to Reality Shifter. 

If you want to achieve a dream incubation, (which is to plant a seed thought in the mind that you want to dream about, usually for creative reasons or to solve a problem—or just to remember your dream), then apply this technique: repeat several times to yourself that you will dream about the problem or issue just before going to sleep—do this over a period of time (days, weeks).

When you finally get results and have a dream about what you programmed, be sure to have paper and pen handy to jot down your thoughts because as soon as we awaken and move, our dream images can easily slip away. It may take time, so be consistent. And try to awaken slowly in the morning, not jump into your conscious mind instantly.

For many years I have kept a dream diary. I don’t remember my dreams every night, but I still write down impressions and creative ideas that are evoked as soon as I get up. I have gotten many images for paintings with this technique so I know it can be your own personal fertile storeroom from which to retrieve creative ideas, images and instruction.

I hope this helps you tap into your creative side.

Do you
  • dream a lot?
  • have a repeating dream?
  • have lucid dreams?
Do you keep a dream diary?
Have you ever been inspired creatively by a dream?


Mike Schulenberg said...

Unfortunately I almost never remember my dreams anymore. I'd be interested to know why that might be and if it's something I can change. It would be great if I could actually influence what I dream about and use it as a playground for creativity :)

Cora said...

Try the advice in my article for dream incubation over a period of nights, with the thought that you will remember your dreams. It might work. What can it hurt? You might be playing in that creative playground sooner than you think.

Throw Away Zine said...

Thanks forr this