Thursday, August 29, 2013

Fear of Dreaming

Dreams 10/52 2011
Dreams 10/52 2011 (Photo credit: JanetR3)
        Many people will commonly say that they don't dream or don't remember their dreams.   The former is untrue since according to researchers we all experience brain activity during sleep that would correspond to dreaming.   If we didn't dream our mind would not function properly.

        Those who say they don't remember their dreams may be resisting them.  There may be an element of fear that could stem from nightmares reaching back to childhood or to some traumatic event.  The dream deniers might be trying to escape the possibility of dealing with the nightmare experience.

        The dreamers who revel in their sleep life and think about their dreams and relive them through thinking about them or analyzing them welcome dreams.   Dreams are like an alternate life where messages may be delivered or life may be evaluated or interpreted.  The dream is often a refuge from the worries and concerns of daily life.

        There is a high probability that we can control our dreams and regulate the timing of when they occur.  Dreams before waking are the ones we remember.  The person practicing dream avoidance could be subconsciously scheduling the dreams to occur only during pre-awakening  sleep time in order not to remember what they have dreamed.

         The act of dreaming is a behavioral activity that can be conditioned to occur as the subconscious may desire.   If the mind has been trained to avoid a particular unpleasantness, our subconscious can purposefully avoid such encounters.  Just as in waking life we sometimes find ourselves acting in a specific way to avoid an unpleasant situation, the mind can find ways in sleep state to avoid the unpleasantness of dreams.

           Do you want to dream during sleep?   Are you afraid of dreaming?    Have you ever feared going to sleep because you were afraid of dreaming?    Have you ever awakened from a bad dream that made you afraid to go back to sleep?

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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Sex Dreams

English: Cover of the fantasy fiction magazine...
English: Cover of the fantasy fiction magazine Avon Fantasy Reader no. 14 (1950) featuring "Temptress of the Tower of Torture and Sin" by Robert E. Howard. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
       Did I get your attention?   We'll see if this title gets more traffic to this post.   After all sex sells and it's something in which most of us have some sort of interest.  We're interested because it's completely natural and a topic that frequently occupies our thoughts.   Like eating, working, going to school, or any other regular activity, it makes sense that we would occasionally have dreams about sex.

     Dreams that arouse us in a sexual way during sleep or influence our thoughts upon awakening to be about sex may not even seem to have sexually related content.  Sometimes those titillating dreams may be about objects, people, or situations that are not sexual by nature.  For example we may dream about being in a place that seems to have nothing to do with sex, but in the dream or as we awaken we may feel sexually charged. I won't attempt to address these types of dreams in this post as they are probably very specific to the individual dreamer and not necessarily easy to decipher.

      Actual sex dreams are typically much easier to understand.  Often these are merely wish fulfillment dreams.  We may dream about an actual person that we know, a celebrity, or an imaginary person who somehow fulfills certain dream parameters of sexual desire.  The person may not necessarily be a person we would be attracted to in waking life, but we can probably come up with another person in our lives with whom we can relate to the dream role.  Essentially the wish fulfillment dream is the same as the sexual fantasy we might have in waking life, but at times with unexpected players in the fantasy role.

       Other sex dreams may have more to do with power.  This may reflect an interest to have power over another person whether it be a specific actual person or a fabrication that is symbolic.  Sex can often be equated with power.  We may want to dominate others or feel the need to be dominated or pampered.  These feelings may be manifested in dreams of sexual activity or something that creates a sexual desire within us.

        Some sex dreams or nightmares may cause us to be afraid or sad.  The fear of rape, abandonment, or humiliation may be an extension of our concerns in waking life.  These thoughts might reflect memories of our own experiences or those we have heard about.   If any of these things have been weighing upon us then we might experience dreams or nightmares about them.

         The best dreams are the ones that are interesting and exciting--the ones from which we awaken feeling happy, confident, or hopeful.  Pleasant sex dreams can do that for us.  Even if the dream fantasy sex partner is one that cause you to feel uncomfortable or disgusted thinking about in a sexual way, don't be overly upset.  If the dream was a positive experience then there is more than likely an important positive message being delivered in the dream.  And the dream may actually have nothing to do with sex.  Instead the sexual imagery and feelings may symbolize something unrelated to sex.

         When you have a pleasant sex dream you should try to discern what the symbolism is.  Try to pinpoint who the players are and why they are in the dream.   Attempt to understand what the dream activities, the settings, and the atmosphere mean to you.  If you are comfortable with the dream that you have had then the dream message can lift you up and carry you through the day.

         Do you remember having any sex dreams?   Do you enjoy them or do they make you uncomfortable?  What dream symbols would you associate with positive sex dreams?   Care to relate any interesting dream experiences of a sexual nature?

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Dream Town

Bishop--Dream Town
Photo by  Chris DellaMea at
         Nearly a month has passed since my last post here as my wife and I took a three week road trip across the United States.   That trip included over 6000 miles in ten full days of driving with some visiting family between stretches of travel.  There was still plenty of time for sleep and that meant plenty of dreams and fodder for future dreams.  Traveling is an amazing way of filling one's memory banks with visual stimuli that can inspire dream imagery.

         A phenomena that has lingered and haunted my thoughts occurred on Sunday July 28th after visiting my son in the remote local of Pocahontas, Virginia.  This is Appalachia coal mining country.  Many of the mines have shut down and now the communities seem to be trapped in another time.  I was mesmerized by what I saw there.   And we were somewhat lost as I tried to find my way back to the highway that would continue us on our trip.

         At one point after traveling on an amazingly twisting mountain road we emerged into a community that immediately caught my attention.  It could have been a town from dreams that I have had.  Large older houses lined the highway and continued down a couple of side streets.  The community seemed like a ghost town though there were obviously people living there.  In fact numbers of them could be seen in yards or on front porches.  But an aura of eeriness prevailed.  If I had seen this in a dream I would have accepted it as perfectly normal.   It was not a dream, but later my memory of what I saw here seemed much like dream memory.

        Since I was somewhat "lost" and a bit anxious to be on my way, and more importantly, get some lunch for us two now famished sojourners, I rushed through the place.  However I was haunted by what I had seen.  I wanted to know what that strange "dream town" was.   I told my wife that I surmised that it had been an old mining town since all of the large houses were similar in construction and laid out in what appeared to be a carefully planned community.  For the rest of that day's journey my thoughts continued to return to the Dream Town.

        At the motel that evening I tried to research the town on the internet, but to no avail.  I was tired from the day's travels and gave up the search.  The place nagged my thoughts for the next two weeks.  Then with the help of Google maps I found it.  The street view Google function confirmed that the community that we had passed through was the community of Bishop which sits partly in West Virginia and partly in Virginia. As I had surmised, Bishop had once been a busy coal community with most of the houses having been built in the 1930's.   The current inhabitants were most likely what remained of the former coal mining families.  The area is apparently quite impoverished.

       The town of Bishop has been stuck in my memory since we passed through it.  I haven't dreamed about it yet as far as I am aware, but it reminds me of a place that I have dreamed about in the past.  That's probably what struck me about the place.  It all seemed so familiar to me.

        Have you ever been in a place or situation that you feel as though you've dreamed about before?   Do the places in your dreams that you don't recognize actually exist beyond your realm of experience?

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