Tuesday, April 5, 2011

D is for Dreams

Like a lot of people, I can't remember most of my dreams.  Most of the ones I can remember are nonsensical and disjointed.  For instance, just the other night I dreamt I was on a zeppelin, and there were these other zeppelins around that had people throwing bricks down at the people below, and I just could not get it across to them how rude that was.

Sometimes though, I have a dream that changes my life forever.  These are three of the shortest, and most influential I've ever had.  Sometimes they have no events, and no settings.  They're only sensation, and vague understanding of a situation.  That's what happened here.

My most inspirational dream:
There was nothing, total blackness, like a fade-out between scenes.  There wasn't even a sense of self.  After a moment of calm nothingness, I heard my own voice speak the words "As long as I do what I know in my heart to be right, I will never regret."

To the best of my knowledge I had never heard those words before.  They've stayed with me ever since.  I try to live by them now.

My worst nightmare:
The waking part: I was visiting a friend in Abilene, Texas.  I have unkind words about Abilene, Texas, but they are for a different post. It was the middle of summer and 100°F/38°C with no air conditioning.  Also, I had the goddamn FLU.  I couldn't move.  I was barely sentient.  Life was utter misery.  The nightmare happened when I finally passed out.

The dreaming part: Again there was black nothingness, but this time I could feel that I was there somewhere inside of it.  The scenario hit me all at once.  Allow me to set it up for you.

Imagine that for whatever reason you attained immortality.  I'm not talking sexy immortality like vampires and highlanders, where you get to live for a few centuries, but you always know that one day death will finally come to claim you.  I'm talking about true immortality.  You live forever.  Sure, the first few centuries are fun; maybe even the first couple of millennia.  Eventually, this shit gets boring.  You've done everything.  You've seen everything.  Everyone you meet is just a rehash of a thousand people you've met before.  The smartest, wisest people have only collected maybe a century of experience.  You will never be able to relate to anyone in any way ever again.

Maybe humanity dies off.  You don't.  You're still there to wander through the rubbish that was once an existence.  In 7 billion years the sun starts turning into a red giant.  You're still alive.  The oceans of earth are evaporated, never to return.  Eventually Earth itself is consumed.  You're still alive.  Maybe 20 billion years later the white dwarf has frozen, and now you're laying on a cold black rock.  You've existed for twice as long as the universe has right now, and by the time anything interesting happens, you'll be far too crazy to care.

That's the feeling that rushed over me in that instant.  I couldn't sleep for days.

My silliest dream:
Once again I was floating in the darkness.  I felt a calm peace wash over me.  I heard a voice.  It was HUGE, and rich, and deep.  I knew with absolute certainty that it was the voice of god.  He spoke unto me in that void.  He said "LOOK TWICE.  SAVE A LIFE.  MOTORCYCLES ARE EVERYWHERE."

I awoke as an atheist.

What about you?  Have you ever had a dream that changed your life?


Mary@GigglesandGuns said...

I think I would be terrified if I had so many black nothingness dreams.

Fascinating post.

Ginny from Seatte said...

It sounds as though Darren Aronofsky is directing your dreams.

Adam Jones said...

Mary - Thank you. I'm glad that you found them interesting. It can be unnerving, but I've only ever had two nightmares that were so bad that I couldn't sleep the next night. I'll write about the other one sometime.

Ginny - I feel like there's a good Requiem for a Dream joke there somewhere, but I'm too tired to find it. Sorry.

Carolee Hollenback said...

I used to dream about a HUGE house with tons of rooms and they all had stuff in them like someone was living there, but I "knew" it was my house that I had just purchased.

I teach journal writing and we write down our dreams during the weeks of the class, then interpret them on the last class. We have a lot of fun!

I'm creating an "online" version of the Journal Writing class ..to come out soon- you may want to look into that :-)

I have a few blogs- maybe one or two will resonate with you!

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Adam Jones said...

The online journal class sounds fun. If you get a chance, keep me up to date.

I am now following you, also.

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