Dreams

I don’t remember most of my dreams, and I remember few in detail. I don’t think I’m missing out on too much. When I wake up from a dream and try to recall it, I usually find it is logically and practically inconsistent, as if I were experiencing a sequence of events while shifting through related universes. One wonders if some science fiction authors who used the multiverse (multiple parallel universes) concept got their inspiration from dreams.

3redshirt

This is apart from whether what happened in the dream could happen in real life. I’ve had dreams in which impossible things have happened. Ever been killed in a dream? I have . . . twice, even. One of my colleagues at work killed me once. My mind didn’t like this, and edited the dream such that it was a doppelgänger of me that was killed. I think my mind likes me enough not to want to see me killed. The second time, I was killed by a Star Trek transporter. Yes, I was a red shirt. And once again, my mind stepped in, and decided I hadn’t actually been killed, just translated into a nearby dimension.

I’ve had this sort of experience in real life. No, I don’t mean being killed and somehow surviving, though someday I’ll have to mention how a ground-fault circuit interrupter saved my life from an example of stupidity that makes me cringe even now. I refer to those bad experiences we have where we spend hours afterwards just wishing we could somehow go back in time to a point ten minutes before the event, and do something different that would avoid the misfortune. The first time I dated my girlfriend, I chose an unusual route to drive home, and got into a car accident. (The other guy’s fault, by the way. The law and I agreed on that.) I spent the next month wishing that somehow I could reverse time and chosen to go home the usual way.

Clearly not a sexual image

Clearly not a sexual image

Freudians interpreted flying dreams as being sexual in nature. This bothered me when I was having a run of them. It seemed that no matter how much I tried, I could only hover at a height of 6 1/2 feet or less. I wasn’t sure if this was supposed to indicate sexual inadequacy, or sexual disinterest in birds. I hope the latter.

I’ve had few other dreams with repeating elements. However, one of them is indirectly connected to the serial I’m writing on the blog, Prophecies and Penalties. In my dreams, there was this ominous church that sat on a hill slope by the side of a road, a cross between two actual churches in the town centers of Townsend and Dunstable, Massachusetts. My imagination took the ominous feeling, and re-imagined the church as a burnt-out shell of a stone building that resembled the chapel at a school I attended, with the names of the members carved into the walls. Ominously, the last year listed had only one new member … before the church was destroyed by fire. The church doesn’t actually appear in the story, because it’s not in Quasopon, Vermont, where the story is set. Its location in my imagination is in North Naumox, Massachusetts, which is where the settlers of the Children’s North Village came from.

I’m currently running through another set of dreams with a repeating feature. It’s a house, a house with many levels, each of which functions as a separate entity, but they are all connected together. Think of it as nine ranch houses in three stacks of three placed end to end, with the middle stack one floor lower that the stacks at each end, and all connected by hallways and stairs. I think this evolved from dreams about the rambling old mill in which I once worked. In my dreams, that old mill had elevators that ran in shafts that didn’t go just up and down, but also ran horizontally, and, in one memorable dream, up a mountain slope. (Yes, I know that makes no sense. Remember, it’s a dream.)

At least this most recent series of dreams is moving upscale. The house used to actually look like a typical American ranch house on the inside, and I always seemed to be looking for the kitchen or bathroom. This last time, the house has taken on the proportions of a palace on the inside, and I was playing the role of the great man’s secretary and general factotum, the person really running the place.

When I say upscale, I mean UPSCALE (Pilsrundale, Latvia /credit Wikipedia/Wojsyl)

When I say upscale, I mean UPSCALE
(Pilsrundale, Latvia /credit Wikipedia/Wojsyl)

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About Brian Bixby

I enjoy history because it helps me understand people. I'm writing fiction for much the same reason.
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7 Responses to Dreams

  1. crimsonprose says:

    Wow, what dreams you have. But forget Freud; read Jung, especially on that building. I used to have a similar one: the building was a museum, and I’d be endlessly running up, and up, and up. I guess I was chasing old ideas! I’ve never had a dream that sparks a story. Though when I was at art college I dreamt of a back-to-front, Dali-esque clock and used the image for a screen print. I thought it would make a good quilt cover. As for flying . . . I leap, like I’ve springs on my feet. Bounce and float across the rooftops. Though that hasn’t happened for a long-long time. And I did once get launched in a spaceship with Bob Hope Maybe it was telling me I’d too-high hopes of writing comedy. 🙂

    • Brian Bixby says:

      I will have to look into Jung for the building dreams. I seem to be chasing after a few things in those dreams.
      At one point I had a series of levitation dreams, where I could levitate a matter of inches, maybe a foot, off the ground. But bouncing on rooftops? You have me there.

      • crimsonprose says:

        However, having read an article about lucid dreaming – which is when in your dream you know that you’re dreaming – the writer said, at the point of ‘knowing’ the dreamer can take control of the dream and do whatever they wish. I found myself in my living room. Everything was as it should be, yet I knew I was dreaming. Aha, I thought, I can do as I like. I’m afraid I wasn’t very adventuresome, but I was only testing it our. So I decided to pass through the wall into the dining room. Whippy-whoo off I go! And cracked my head on the wall. You might think I’d wake up, but no. I’m still dreaming. Okay, I thought. So I’ll pass through the ceiling into my bedroom. And again cracked my head. I still didn’t wake up. I thought, what now should I do? So I climbed the stairs and went to bed – where I woke up.
        True story. If fiction I’d have made it more exciting.
        Good luck with discovering the cause of your dreams. It often comes down to either striving, or escaping.

        • Brian Bixby says:

          Unreality is not your friend. 😉

          I suspect my building dream is sometimes striving and sometimes escaping, then, because it is paired with two different types of story lines, to the extent there are story lines.

          • crimsonprose says:

            There is a fiction-writer; can’t have a dream without a storyline. Mine seem to be more one activity. I’m searching. I’m running. I’m adding long lists of numbers (haven’t done that for a while). I remember waking from one dream, couldn’t remember at all what it was, only that I’d just solved a great mystic mystery – you know, like 42. But I couldn’t remember a thing of it.

            • Brian Bixby says:

              I had a dream like that once. I was writing a paper for a high school class late at night, and I dozed off while writing it. In my hazy state of awareness, I came up withe this really great idea, which solved EVERYTHING in that paper, and some other things besides, and wrote it down.
              Unfortunately, when I fully came to, I found I had written down only the last sentence, which made no sense by itself. And I couldn’t recollect my argument.

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