I am waking up (time 5:48 am) from a dream that has got me thinking about this mysterious and powerful thing we call the brain. In the dream, I met people who spoke a language I understood even though in real life I hadn’t heard such a language spoken before or seen any of their faces.
This got me thinking really hard about what dreams are. What are they, really? Do we make them up, or do we experience them the same way that we breathe during sleep, that is without any form of control. Is our ability to imagine so great that we can build incredibly detailed imaginary worlds from scratch? Worlds populated by people and things we have never seen before? With Smells that are both familiar and foreign at the same time?
At this early hour of the day I find myself in a no bullshit admiration for the amazing marvel that is the human body.
My agnostic self seems to be so deeply shaken that it is leaning towards “believer” status again. If we are here right now I feel that we are, because of a greater power and not because of Darwin’s theory of evolution.
But again I ask myself, how we can possess the ability to construct audio visual worlds that are as vivid in the mind as say when we are consciously creating imaginary characters and places. Creative thinking is made possible largely because of an active and awake brain. So when the dormant, inactive brain is equally as good if not better in creating stuff out of thin air, all I can do really is just sit here on my bed and let my mind wander.
I can see and feel the hand of this small girl that I shook after she helped me out by giving me directions, in a place I thought was Ethiopia in my dream. I arrived there like in all dreams, from nowhere and was welcomed by armed men on the river who escorted me to the main town. I then saw and danced (yeah I danced) with one woman after hearing a traditional song that I am sure I hadn’t heard before. But the music suited the occasion and the mood of the place. I was surrounded by what looked like market women having some sort of ceremony in the open. This woman, upon seeing me dance, told me that we all as Africans are one people culturally speaking, since my dance movements and gestures were quite similar to hers.
Looking back, I realize that I might have been in some sort of fused country, EthioGhana.
Well this may be because the people around me didn’t look much like the Ethiopians I knew about and they all smelled Ghanaian, if you know what I mean.
What gets to me the most is the fact that, I was in this place/ country I hadn’t been to with people I had never seen before in my life but yet I was able to talk with these faces that I had created and also feel the solid ground under my feet, whiles walking around.
The buildings looked like nothing I’ve seen before in terms of the painting on their concrete facade and the markings on these buildings. I also felt like I was in an African version of the Italian city of Venice, with its canal systems flowing through and below ancient buildings.
I occasionally remember my dreams but never with such detail.
Some people will tell you that the conscious brain and the unconscious one have nothing in common and that once you were awake what you think you saw in a dream is just your conscious brain making things up for you.
Again now that I think about the movie “Inception”, the concept of the “stretched time” in dreams makes sense. What I just talked about now, if it were to have unfolded in real life would be at most, one hour long. I just woke up from a six-hour sleep, give or take a couple of minutes. I don’t know exactly how many hours were devoted to my trip to EthioGhana but I would say at least 4 hours.
I’ve heard about people who get ideas or inspiration from dreams. And this could be for a new lotto staking plan (or the actual 6 numbers themselves), or an idea for a book, song, movie etc. Personally I remember the ending of this dream I had a while back which was so cinematic in nature that I plan to use it as a basis for one of the movies I’ve planned to make.
It is 6:15 now and already the dream has started fading from my memory. But if there is one thing I am sure about, it is if I do go back to that exact place and meet the same people it would be like visiting old friends. This time though I would try and take along a still camera which can be brought out of dreams intact.