Natalie Rants about Dreaming: The ridiculousness of the dream dictionary.

I was going to write about anonymity, the idea of it..but eh. Topical, you say? Current, you suggest?

Beh. My mind is on dreams now. Rant or not, its something I want to talk about.

Since I was young, I have been recording my dreams. I don’t know why. Maybe I always had vivid ones and I felt the need at a young age to write them down. My earliest memory of a dream was typical for a kid, having a fun run around a zoo with some cartoon characters. Before I woke up, my last memory was of me in my bed staring into a shaft of light on the ground, where all of my little dream friends of the previous night stood. “You can come back and play with us whenever you like!” they told me. Did this stick with me? Regardless, still to this day the idea of dreaming and “the dream world” has held significance. I can flip through my dream journals, read my past adventures, and the memory of it comes back to me as if it was something I experienced in the waking world.

Some people attribute the idea of dreams to something mystical. As someone who has perused forums on the subject, you always find some psychic wannabe thinking that they can predict the end of the world with their dreams. Some think demons come to you while you sleep to curse you and fill your mind with evil thoughts. Some people believe you can even dream -with- another person, like a two player video game. There are even others who will drop hard earned cash on dream dictionaries to attempt to divine their destiny through arbitrary meanings attached to objects.

It seems to me all of that is just over reaction. Dreams to me are not magical, alternate realities that exist on another plane. They’re  just…dreams. Its all psychological in the end, don’t you think? Never doubt what your mind is capable of, after all. Your brain is literally a sponge, soaking up all that you see and experience, and throwing it back to you in puree form. Recording my dreams isn’t just to have a cool adventure to read on a boring day and say “Hey! I experienced that!”, either. I really think dreams can also show a deeper inner you, an unfiltered and honest opinion of what you truly feel about the world around you.

For example, for as long as I remember, I have been dreaming about my old childhood home. I haven’t lived in that house since I was in high school, yet so often I find myself in that familiar little house. Usually these dreams involve the usual fare: a weird plot, or a transformation of the house into something it isn’t. Maybe the layout changes, or I wake up in my old bedroom and there are vines everywhere. When it comes to one room, however, the results are always the same. As soon as I go into the cellar of that house, things become…spooky. There is always ghosts prowling around, being scary and making my night a very negative and dark one! Also, alot of sad things happen in that house too. Nothing emotional, just gory. Death and murder and stuff like that.

Did anything happen in that house that was super bad? No. I could say my childhood was alright. A murder perhaps? No, not that either. Who know, maybe I was afraid of the cellar? There was also a time when that house was, infact, haunted. (Take that however you want, but I do have a tale or two that can be quite convincing!) Am I reliving that experience in my mind? Is it the dead calling me back to that underground room?  I dream about that house all the damn time,so it seems like it must be something important.

Depending on how one looks at a dream, you could interpret my repetitive dream sign in a numerous amount of ways.

For a laugh, let me pop online and look at what a couple dream dictionary-styled sites say about dreaming of old houses! No, lets be more specific: dreams about a childhood home’s basement
“Basement: This could represent your unconscious and subjects suppressed through your inability to handle them.”

And another. Oh! This one mentions haunted homes!
“…if the room looks odd or scary, it could be a premonition of some unpleasant dreams to come…”

Ah, this one is a doozy!
“If you dream that you are in a basement of a house, and even if in your dream the basement visit was an unpleasant experience it means that you’re going to find prosperous opportunities. By association this dream may also represent that your fears are well founded and it is important to act now in regards to any affairs concerning the heart”

So, by a small percentage of what others are saying about my dreaming of a very particular basement, not only am I in for some prospering times, but I am also  suppressed emotionally and have problems handling things..

..really? I thought my house was just a little haunted back in the day.

While I do agree that psychology plays a major role in dreaming, I do not think I can open a book or click on a website and find the inner me by listening to what others say about me. Its…ridiculous. If I listened to these meanings, I need to not only seriously consider therapy, but also buy up all the lotto tickets in the state. Thats not how you run a life.

Dreams are all based on the individual, and their meaning can only be divined at inside yourself. I don’t think I am emotionally damaged, no more than I think I am going to win the lottery tomorrow. Does one reoccurring dream really have that much power of my life and future? I just grew up in a house that had a haunted experience in it and I keep returning to that as a setting for my more creepier dreams. This is a prime example of why dream dictionaries are ridiculous. What does some lady in Iowa who claims to speak to the spirit world know about my life and what I went through? How can they possibly know what that basement meant to me in a personal sense and tell me how my life will be shaped by dreaming about it? More importantly, why do people need someone that claims to be an expert on the subject telling them how to go about living? Why do we crave security where none can be given?

If you truly want to know you, (and not just whether you will win the lottery..) just record your dreams in some form. Write it in a blog, a journal, somewhere. Record every detail. Use it as a tool for self critique. If you look at how you react to certain types of people and places in your dream, you can see the inner you. The subconscious mind is your brain completely devoid of societal restrictions of thought and conscious. You literally have free reign to do whatever you want in your mind without any type of repercussions. By studying how your subconscious works in the remarkable situations your mind puts itself in, you can evaluate yourself, see where your weaknesses lie,  face your fears and solve your prejudices. I think really studying that can be important to seeing the bigger picture of your life.  Self reflection in its purest of forms, and much more valuable in the long term than predicting your next whirlwind romance.. (Also, you know…cool story ideas.)

But please…please. Save your money. Do not buy a dream dictionary. You’re not going to see your future in your own subconscious. Your dreams can’t predict your future anymore than you can in your waking life.


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