“Take What Resonates and Leave the Rest”
Your Dreams Can Answer Your Biggest Questions
If you will allow yourself to recognize your dreams as a valid and valuable state of consciousness, they can give you a fascinating vantage point on your life that can reveal your deeper intentions and most intimate desires in a way that the logic and ration of the mind are not capable of comprehending / accessing.
While it is true that dreams often contain a chaotic and somewhat crazy jumble of sub-consciousness, if you recognize them as a resource through which you can learn about yourself, you will find the dreamworld to be a far more consistent and revealing space than you may currently realize.
Why you should write your dreams down.
one of the best ways to deepen your dream experiences is to keep a dream journal. Even though reading back over your dreams at a later date can certainly provide additional insight (particularly in seeing how different dreams are related), the reason for keeping a dream journal isn’t so much about recording them for later; it is about what you will learn through the process of putting the fluid, strange, emotional, hard-to-articulate events of your dreams into the solidity of language.
By writing your dreams down, you will be much more likely to remember them even if you never look at your dream journal again. This shows how dreams are not recorded in our primary memory unless we create a recording of them in our waking state by either writing them down or telling someone about them.
Without a dream journal, we remember our dreams for a short while but then they just seem to fall away (unless something in the day triggers the memory of them). By documenting your dreams, you are creating a bridge inside yourself that allows you to bring them from your sleeping state into your waking state such that you can use them to bring insight to your life.
So, it is not so much about what you write in your dream journal, but the bridge that the act of writing creates between your dream and waking experiences. This creates a flow of information in BOTH directions with BOTH your waking and dream states being enhanced by this flow of insight and ever deepening focus. As this flow starts to build, you will then find yourself remembering your dreams in new and clearer ways — this is hard to express, but it is the experience of becoming more skilled at both remembering and articulating your dream experiences — it is the evolution of a new modality of inner communication.
Because events within dreams are far more fluid, emotional, and organic in how they unfold, they are less “literal” than our waking life. Putting something that is not literal into a language that is heavily biased towards describing “the literal” is an art form based on the creative expression of the indescribable. Like any art form, your ability to do this will increase the more you focus upon it.
The effect of this bridge created by your focus is to bring your dream life and waking life closer together.
In this, you will find your dreams quickly start to feel more solid and “real” to you. So, not only will you find yourself getting better at articulating your dream experiences, you will also find your dream experiences easier to articulate because they will feel more like “real” experiences.
ELABORATION: This phenomenon isn’t caused by your dream experiences actually becoming “more real”; it is caused by your growing ability to remember and articulate them. So, it is not that your dreams get less crazy, it is that your mind gets better at expressing its experience in less crazy sounding ways.
This is to understand that no memory of a dream is literal — it is always our best translation of an indescribable experience.
The reason for this is that dreams are non-physical, spiritual experiences that our minds translate into real world “literal” outer-experiences. The practice of recording your dreams is therefore like a translator practicing their art — as they do so, they find the process not only gets easier, but they also become much clearer / more accurate in their translation.
Tips for recording your dreams.
The best way to record a dream is with as little waking up as you can. So, if you are going to do it by writing, then keep your pencil and paper (or your phone / tablet) in the same place by the side of the bed so you can easily reach for them.
one advantage of a pencil and paper is that you can grab the pencil and scrawl down a word or two without even opening your eyes too much. So, while you are still barely awake, hold your focus on your dream while your hand goes off and grabs the pencil and just tries to write a word or two that can act as a bridge to the dream. If you have begun waking up more than that, then just pull the pad and paper over and begin writing it down in full sentences, but still try to do this as close to the time of the dream as possible—meaning don’t get up and pee first, thinking you will surely remember!
Another option for recording dreams is sound recorders (such as your phone). You do, however, have to know how to get the device easily recording with minimal thought so you should have the recording app already running and ready to go. Then, with as little waking up as possible, hold yourself in that in-between space and just start speaking about your dream. If you are as connected to the dream as I am suggesting, then it will probably be just a word or two that begins to convey it.
The main thing to recognize in this process is that as you are waking up — when you are still half in the dream — it will seem impossible that you could possibly forget this vibrant reality you are waking from. If you will bring your conscious awareness to this moment of awakening, there is a fascinating experience, almost as magical as lucid dreams, that shows us how incredible our consciousness is.
I experience this as recognizing that even though I think I will be able to remember the dream, I probably won’t. Therefore, even though it feels silly (like switching the lights on and off to have lucid dreams), I pick a single word to encapsulate the dream. What you then do is keep repeating this word to yourself as you slowly start to open your eyes and bring yourself back to full wakefulness. I find that as I witness the meaning of my chosen word — that seems in the moment of its choosing to fully express the heart of my dream — it shifts and becomes less and less clear / descriptive as I wake up.
This is to witness the shift from the wider state of consciousness we experience when dreaming, to the narrower focus of our waking self.
everything I am talking about here is prior to sitting up in bed and writing down your dream in full. I am pointing you toward the “moment of awakening” as being something you can stay within, extend, and explore. This is a space between worlds, where you experience a mix of dream imagery and emotions, as your rational mind starts to come into play.
Once you have woken up and begin to write down your dream in the more traditional sense, make sure you focus mainly on writing what you felt — more so than getting bogged down by the physical details. One of the biggest tips I can give you for this is to use associated memories — which is where you write what the feeling reminded you of.
For example, the way someone badly treated you in a dream may remind you of an event in physicality when you felt mistreated. Writing down this association is like “a picture saying a thousand words” in how you will instantly give yourself access to a wealth of subtle, nuanced, emotional-based information through which you can better understand what the dream was about.
This is because the association is not just a helpful description; it is that the dream event is connected to the unresolved emotions of that past experience.
ELABORATION: I am not saying that the dream was entirely about that particular past event (which will sometimes feel like a stretch). This is because unresolved / wounded emotions are never only expressed through a single event; instead, they create repeated patterns. So, the association you are making is linking a dream event to a life pattern of emotions — and not the specific emotions of a single life event.
In this, you are looking to better recognize the feelings in your dreams by using the events of your life as a language of feeling you can tap into. In this way, your consciousness uses your life experience in the creation of your dreams.
The events of your life aren’t something your consciousness usually describes in human language — the events of your life are its language.
When our spirits communicate with each other, they show whole selves and whole events through the unfiltered sharing of experience. There is no need for a verbal language.
As you are going to sleep, come up with a clear, focused question about something you are dealing with and ask to have a dream that will give you insight into it.
This is about focusing on the thing you want insight into as you enter into the dreamworld. So, you aren’t asking “the universe” to give you something — there is no need for a “pretty please”; you are simply understanding that your dreams are created by your own intention and focus. Therefore, as you think about the thing you want insight into, feel and know with confidence that you will experience insight.
know with certainty — which is to be without doubt or fear — that you will remember your dream as you put out your pad and paper (or your recorder). Recognize how you are setting the scene to experience your intention through this focus. You may even want to imagine yourself recording the dream the next morning. Understand that the more you practice this the better it will get, but I still want you to expect a result in the morning.
With this done, it is important to let that intention go, as to hold on to it tightly is to express fear it will not happen. But I still want you to continue to wonder / wander through the memories / territory that your question is about as you are falling asleep. As the logic of your mind (and the anxiety behind your question) starts to fall away, let your imagination begin to explore NEW possibilities / variations of “how things could be” or “how things may play out”.
This technique works much better when you are open to general insight as opposed to looking for a “yes or no” / “stay or go” answer. This is because a person looking for such a restrictive answer is rarely open to wider, more inclusive possibilities. So, it is not that dreams can’t offer insight to those questions, but you are essentially hobbling your own ability to get a clear answer by insisting the answer has to be polarized and literal (and therefore exclusionary).
I want you to be playful, child-like, and fluid in how you explore the territory of your question as you fall asleep. By doing this, you will effectively walk into the dreamworld with the focus / intention of continuing to explore that territory.
And, if it doesn’t work the first morning, don’t worry. It often takes a bit of practice. Your first results, when they come, will quickly boost your confidence which will then improve your next insights. The dreamworld is such a valuable resource. And the more you open it up, the more you will give yourself magical experiences.
Ultimately, in this world — the physical world — whatever we most believe we can do, we will do. This is how and why experiencing the magic of your dreams will bring more magic to your waking life. There is magic inside you.
There is magic in the dreamworld.
There is magic in your life.
There is magic in creation.
connect these dots. connect these worlds. Keep dancing through these reflections to better understand the magical nature of life.