10/20/2010

How to have a mutual dream

Dreaming TogetherYou can have a mutual dream just like you would incubate any other dream. Try Google with “incubate dream” for more information.

If you’re already in the habit of sharing your dreams with others, you’re all set. Otherwise you will have to start this habit. With a meeting dream you want confirmation from the one you met. With a meshing dream, you won’t even know about the meshing unless you share the dream with others.

Don’t forget, you’re likely to already have mutual dreams.

10/17/2010

Meshing versus meeting

Book cover Mutual DreamingThere’s much more shared dreaming than we’re aware of. When somebody mentions shared dreaming you may only think of people meeting each other in a dream. It’s still the most obvious way to think about shared dreaming. It’s the type of shared dreaming movies can be made about. Think of movies like The Matrix, or more recently Inception. If you think that the possibilities in these movies are rare or even impossible then you’ve seen nothing yet. In the real world there’s another type of shared dreaming that’s probably very common.

Among the pioneers of mutual dreaming it has been Linda Lane Magallón who in the book Mutual Dreaming explains different types of mutual dreaming. The meshing dreams are especially interesting. A meshing dream happens when two or more people have exactly the same dream. Linda gives an example where a meeting dream would have both dreamers sitting in a Porsche, one behind the wheel and the other one driving along. In a meshing dream, both dreamers would have exactly the same dream of driving the Porsche, without the other dreamer being present in the dream.

In the book Linda says that of 124 mutual dream accounts 36% happen to concern meeting dreams. The remaining 64% are meshing dreams. That means that for every meeting dream there are two meshing dreams. The book was published in 1997 and we have had time to get a little more experience with mutual dreaming over the last 13 years. My impression is that there are substantially more meshing dreams than meeting dreams, more than 2 to 1, but it’s hard to put a number on it.

There are two challenges with getting a reliable count of meshing dreams. The first challenge is to catch meshing dreams. We probably overlook many of them. It’s easy enough to get confirmation on a meeting dream. The person you need to ask is in the dream, so you know who it is. With a meshing dream you’re usually clueless whom you should ask. There isn’t enough time in the day to just ask everyone. We could have lots of meshing dreams every night, without knowing it.

The second challenge is to decide when exactly a same dream counts as a meshing dream. Some meshing dreams shouldn’t really be counted as such. Mutual dreams need to demonstrate some kind of communication. Sometimes we accept a same dream as sufficient proof of some kind of communication, like in the example of two dreamers driving a Porsche. What if two people drove different cars, yet with the same color? What if these two people with the same dream belong to a group of 40 dreamers who all submitted several dreams on that same night? With enough dreamers and dreams I expect to see similarities somewhere, so if you count every similarity you probably count too many.

I suspect that it adds up to underestimating the number of meshing dreams compared to meeting dreams. I could be wrong about it, but either way, if you’re interested in mutual dreams, you’ll have to be ready to deal with both meshing and meeting dreams.

10/14/2010

My first meetings in dreams

AC DCI was born in a time when everybody forgot their dreams. Many of us still do. Between falling asleep and waking up there’s only amnesia. However, dreams can be remembered . Once remembered, if you don’t like them, dreams can also be changed. That’s dreaming 101. The next step is even more exciting, because it looks like we’re all connected in dreams.

I found my very first experience with connecting to somebody else in a dream unsettling. A friend showed up and he seemed to have some unspecified emotional problems that surprised me. I found this a bit too challenging to check with him. It may or may not have been a true connection, but it was convincing enough for me to reconsider many of my assumptions about dreams and reality in general. Suddenly dreams were much more than a virtual world inside my own head. Anybody could step into those dreams, friends and family, but also an unlimited number of strangers.

Dreams were considered extremely obscure at the time, so I didn’t quite know how to proceed. I knew that mystics sometimes say that we’re all connected. I never expected that this would be so clearly visible in dreams. I wasn’t quite sure whether I liked it.

Many years later I had a partially confirmed meeting in a dream with a stranger. In that dream I met a man who had a remarkable interest in the rock band AC/DC. I woke up being amazed by the emphasis on this band. Assuming that this dream was all about me, I couldn’t figure out why a band that didn’t hold any meaning to me should be so important. Later that day I received an email from a stranger who had written a book that he wanted me to read. Something about our email interaction reminded me of the dream, so I asked him about music he liked. I don’t remember the exact details of that conversation, except that he indeed confirmed that he was a huge fan of AC/DC.

Somehow I could handle this second experience much better already. Still, it leaves one wondering. During sleep we have many dreams every night again. How many of these dreams could be shared with others? Given that most of our world is inhabited by strangers, we could be dreaming with others all the time without knowing it. Even worse, it may just be possible that we’re dreaming with people we do know without recognizing it. There is quite some support for the possibility that we’re mutual dreaming all the time. I’ll tell more about this later.

7/2/2006

Attachments

Filed under:

strange tangle

Awareness of the dream requires a certain room for that awareness, a freedom from being occupied with all kinds of emotional or intellectual issues. Not being attached. I think that the post yesterday about inner peace gives a number of signs that might predict whether a person could have lucid dreams.

The freedom of attachments may also show up in the content of the dream, in many ways: perhaps less aggression and more a generally upbeat mood, more reflective thinking, a higher consistency of the story of the dream, perhaps more fantastic elements, or a use of different (sensory) channels of information, perhaps even the disappearance of visual elements all together, just to name a few things. I’m sure that with a little brainstorming, you could create a long list of items that might occur more frequently with dreams of frequent lucid dreamers.

Photo by Montana Raven

7/1/2006

Inner peace and lucidity

Filed under:

lotus flower

Many years ago somebody posted “some signs and symptoms of inner peace” to the internet. I never knew who the author was, until Saskia Davis submitted a comment to this post, explaining that she is in fact the author.

I wonder whether people who naturally have lucid dreams frequently, have these signs and symptoms more often than non lucid dreamers. Here are the signs:

  1. A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than on fears based on past experiences.
  2. An unmistakable ability to enjoy each moment.
  3. A loss of interest in judging other people.
  4. A loss of interest in judging self.
  5. A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others.
  6. A loss of interest in conflict.
  7. A loss of the ability to worry. (This is a very serious symptom.)
  8. Frequent, overwhelming episodes of appreciation.
  9. Contented feelings of connectedness with others and nature.
  10. Frequent attacks of smiling.
  11. An increasing tendency to let things happen rather than make them happen.
  12. An increased susceptibility to the love extended by others as well as the uncontrollable urge to extend it.

4/4/2006

The applied lucid dream

Filed under:

Stature in Italy

With the new online questionnaire we would like to find out whether you have used (one of) your lucid dreams for a particular purpose, for example to change nightmares into more pleasant dreams, to learn a sport, solve a problem, etc. Please feel free to name a different use you have found for your lucid dreams.

To the Klartraum site

3/7/2006

Birthday of Detlev von Uslar

Tsunami

On March 17, 2006 Professor Detlev von Uslar will celebrate his 80th birthday. I would like to use this occasion to introduce him here, because he examined the theme of dreaming intensively and thoroughly. Read more…

7/12/2005

Nightmares and lucid dreams

Victor Spoormaker

Hi, I am Victor Spoormaker and I am currently working as a postdoctoral fellow at the department of Clinical Psychology at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. My research focuses on lucid dreaming as a treatment for recurrent nightmares and the relationship of nightmares with other sleep and psychological disturbances. Moreover, I study in which way dreams can be creative (e.g incubated, lucid, and daydreams).

Read more…

4/26/2005

Other dream blogs

Bloglines

Dreamers United follows the format of a web log, or blog for short. Typically that means there is one main page that is frequently updated, and that there’s a newsfeed for those who like to follow multiple blogs through a newsreader like Bloglines.

I know of a several other dream blogs, all of them communities sharing dreams. Here they are:

- Abatons. Best appreciated through a newsfeed.
- Community of Dreams, hosted at LiveJournal, which has special addresses for the newsfeeds, in this case here. Unfortunately, the avatar pictures don’t show up at Bloglines.
- Dream Tribe, also easier to keep up with through the newsfeed.

Oh, and in case you missed it, Dreamers United has a newsfeed too.

4/25/2005

The Senoi hope for a nicer world

Temiar

You may have heard about the Senoi inspired hope to use dreams to create a nicer world. Mind you, the real Senoi people - or the Temiar - likely had and have different dream practices. Perhaps we should never use the words Senoi and dreams together again, but I have a question. If you look at the Western approach to dreaming, it is very personal, psychological, and somehow only appealing to very few people. Whereas the Senoi fantasy went far beyond that, and suggested that everyone discusses dreams on a regular basis, in a way that improves social relationships, and even the way society is organized.

Did anyone patent this idea already? Just joking. This all goes back at least three decades, and stories supposedly about the Senoi still turn up occasionally. Unfortunately, nothing much was ever done with these ideals. I’m not aware that anyone every tried to directly connect dreaming to group building and social action, although the World Dreams Peace Bridge comes close. Is there more we can do in this area?

For some background information, see G. William Domhoff, Senoi Dream Theory: Myth, Scientific Method, and the Dreamwork Movement. I got my own doubts after reading Marina Roseman’s book Healing Sounds from the Malaysian Rainforest (1991), that shows that the Temiar have a radically different view of the world. The picture comes from the Temiar website.

4/23/2005

Gambling with dreams

Filed under:

lottery balls

I dreamt about this last night. I read about it in Anthony Shafton’s book Dream-Singers, a few weeks ago. He describes how African Americans use dreams for numbers gambling. Although they may do it less than they used to. What I found interesting is that it only works with dreams of others. Which means that gambling motivates people to share dreams. They may not be much interested in the dreams themselves, but it still helps to create a setting in which dream sharing becomes common.

I’ve heard that Italians do the same. I tried to learn more about it, but I don’t know that many Italians. Do Italians need dreams of others as well? And, if African Americans and Italians use dreams for gambling, couldn’t there be many more people who do this?

4/20/2005

Dreaming and Democracy

soapbox

Dreams often reflect important issues. Think of motives, interests, talents, but also current challenges or unresolved issues. People who frequently tell each other their dreams, show a lot of themselves this way. There are no false sentiments, no intellectual pretensions, or any other smoke screens, it all stays real. I think that this is special.

In a social sense there is relatively little experience with dream groups. I suspect that dreams are useful for resolving conflicts, because they can quickly point to the real issues, in a way that shows to all parties what really is at stake. Dreams are also very good for creative inspiration, which means there could be more fun social applications as well.

The picture comes from the Glasson Murray Group.

4/18/2005

The Kilodream project

rhino in a box

Juhani Kääriäinen, a Finn living in Sweden, has indexed 1000 of his dreams. He waits for his dream images to emerge in our daytime world, and some of them do.

Read more about the Kilodream project…

4/11/2005

Visualisation and regeneration

finger trick

In the Dutch edition the subject of visualisation and regeneration came up. I mentioned having read about children being able to regenerate lost finger tops, but until now I never checked for sources.

I consulted with Google. Well… it seems possible. Here are some links, look for more with Google, and especially scholar.google.com for scientific publications:

- “[…] in the very young, a certain amount of regeneration occurs to compensate for lost tissue”, Med J Aust. 1979 Dec 1;2(11):580-2
- Possibly an adult? Case report: “the distal phalanx generated to give an excellent functional result”, J Hand Surg [Br]. 1993 Apr;18(2):230-3
- Torture on monkeys. “The new structures were cosmetically pleasing as in the human instances”, Anat Embryol (Berl). 1987;177(1):29-36.

Visualisation not even needed.

4/9/2005

Flu as a dream

boy with fever

Sometimes I like to see life as a dream. I’m at day 8 of general fatigue, an ongoing fever, occasional loud coughing, throat pains, slightly burning eyes, my nose has gone from bleeding to stuffed to running, and my head feels stuffed. For a complete picture, throw in a strong uneasy feeling in the bones at especially day 4.

The symbol I understand best is the raised temperature. During the last week, I’ve become more and more angrier, while at the same time my fever seemed to get worse and worse. It didn’t help that I couldn’t figure out what I could be so angry about. But, in the evening of day 7 I realized that I have a few axes to grind with doctors and other authorities who have been fighting me while I was sick. After that insight, I had the best night of sleep so far.

Illness can be seen as expressing or releasing emotions that can not be expressed otherwise. Which makes me wonder. Two years ago I went through a period of releasing anger too. That concerned anger about the apparent injustice of having been ill with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for so long, and the many years of my life that I lost. That time it didn’t require fever, I directly experienced that anger for two whole weeks, and was very aware of where it came from. Clearly, this time around, there’s more at stake than only bottled up aggression.

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