Written April 20, 2021:
Seize The Dream
Oh great! I have not even mastered (who am I kidding! I am not even close, I still suck at meditation after months of trying) full awareness during waking hours, now I find out I can be fully present in my dreams, too?! Dream yoga or lucid dreaming is the ability to “wake up” – make conscious choices – within a dream while remaining asleep.
When I first read about this, my initial reaction was, why would I even bother? It is just a dream, it is not reality. What would it matter if I am able to make conscious decisions in an imaginary world? So in my dreams I was able to come up with a cure for COVID-19 while snoring in my pajamas, what difference does it make? So in my dreams there was no pandemic to begin with and I was living the life I had planned before everything was ruined, but when I wake up, I will still be stuck, lost and melancholic. So in my dreams I was awake and knew I was dreaming and I spent the day just like any other, what would that tell me?
There were really times when I would wake up from a dream where I knew I was dreaming. But thinking about it, I am not sure whether I made any conscious decisions or anything. Then again, seriously, what does it matter?! According to Tibetan Buddhism, it could be quite powerful. That these could be an extraordinarily meaningful and profound real-life (seriously???) experience. By seizing our dreams, we take hold of our dream, rather than the dream having a hold over us. The most significant purpose is that the lessons we learn from dreams often carry over into our waking life.
Just last week I woke up feeling terrible from a dream, or should we call it a nightmare? I distinctly remember my dream, but not whether I was aware it was one or not (I mean, while dreaming). I suppose in a way, the dream was not that bad, because I got what I consciously (when I am awake, that is) thought I wanted. But in order for this to happen, somebody was hurt. When I opened my eyes, I felt horrible because I realized that I could not get what I want without hurting someone (no matter indirectly) in the process. I have been trying to let go of that desire for months now (way before the third party came into the picture) and maybe, just maybe, my subconscious is telling me to live in the present and forget the past.
No matter how skeptical I am however, I find this concept very very interesting. Shall I try it for fun? If all the benefits of this practice is true, I would willingly sleep (or rather consciously dream) for more than half a day! Who would like to try? Shall we arrange to meet in Maldives and have a long-anticipated holiday? Shall we go and try to climb Mt. Everest together? Or shall we simply meet for lunch and not have to wear a face mask and bother about social distancing?
Update: I realized instead of staying up all night contemplating on what may or may not happen should I decide to get back in the game, I would be better off spending my time dreaming about the life I want for me and my daughter and making sure it comes true.