Sunday, April 1, 2012

Flying, Falling and Jumping Dreams

(photo by Gilberto Filho)

I lumped these three dream phenomena together because they produce a similar physiological response when you are dreaming.

Falling is that sensation you feel just as you are drifting off to sleep. You feel like you are falling and you jerk yourself awake. (I do that all the time and my spouse is like "Stop that!")But you can also have a dream where you see, or feel, yourself falling, maybe off a cliff or something. I have never had this dream but apparently it means there is a feeling of not having any control of the situation in your dreams and maybe waking life.

Flying dreams are the best. If you have ever had one, you know what I am talking about because it is an incredible sensation. I once had a dream that I was flying over a lake and forest (Lake Whatcom to be specific). It was like the ride "Soaring Over California" in Disneyland. Flying is very big in Lucid Dreaming. If you can make yourself intentionally fly in your dream, you have great mind control and can then travel to wherever you want (in your dreams). Flying in your dream means you can, or feel like you can, overcome anything.You feel successful and are craving freedom or thrills (could be of the sexual kind).In flying we become the archetypal super-hero, but as Jung suggests, we should heed the warning of the myth of Icarus, who thought to make himself godlike with his fragile wings,leading to his (literal) downfall.

I included the image of jumping because that is what I tend to do in my dreams rather than fall or fly. I once had a dream where I was at the top of my stairs looking down at this purple sleeping bag scuttling across the floor below me. I was scared but knew I needed to confront this thing. So I did a swan-dive off the top stair and fell through the purple bag. Instead of splattering on the floor though, as you would think I would, I went through the bag in layers (or the bag went through me?). It felt incredible. I think the sensation might be going through the layers or levels of consciousness. At that moment, in real life, the phone rang, I answered it but had a really hard time coming "back up". (Normally I am a very light sleeper).I don't think I've had that same sensation of "going through" in real life but it would be similar to going on one of those elevator drop rides at a fair.

Maybe the reason we like amusement park rides so much is because they stimulate this same response in our brain?

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