Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Dream a little dream


I awoke at 4 a.m. on Tuesday morning, remarkably aware of every detail of the seemingly quite long dream I had just had. The possible reasons for why I had dreamed what I had kept me awake several hours, or as is the way it goes, until a half hour before my alarm was to go off, so that when it did ring, I was shocked that I had fallen back to sleep.

They say that dreams are a window into our subconscious and yet there are just as many theories of why we dream as there are doctors, psychiatrists, scientists and new age gurus. It’s an interesting concept, that dreams are somehow pointing out meaning or direction to our lives. Maybe we’ve missed some important hint or message in our waking life and only our unconscious recognized that information as being important for us, so that it comes back to us in a dream state. I like that idea, that we are not just being dragged along for uncharacteristically scary or surreal experiences for no reason whatsoever; that there may actually be some reason, some puzzle that we need to decipher.

There are a few groups of thought as to why we dream.

One proposes that there is no true reason or purpose why we dream and that it’s similar to a movie being replayed, with no regard to a timeline, with mere fragments of what we’ve seen or felt. That group then divides into those who do and those who do not believe it’s essential for our mental, emotional and even physical health to dream.

There are those who believe dreams are used by our subconscious to process information, feelings and emotions. This is what is described as the “information-processing” theory.

Basically they believe that our dreams are there to work out the kinks in our brains that we are not consciously able to unknot ourselves in our busy lives.

J.Allan Hobson and Rober McClarley came up with the idea of “activation-synthesis model dreaming” theory around 1977. The concept is based mostly on science in regards to the parts of the brian and its functions and hormones secreted while sleeping. They believed that the brain is at its most creative while asleep.

And then there is a group that uses dreams to psychoanalyze our personalities, believing that our subconscious dreams are gateways into our true, and very likely repressed, desires, thoughts and feelings.

I dreamed that several rabid black kittens were attacking my left forearm, biting and clawing and basically trying to kill me. In my dream I found myself wringing the neck of one of the kittens and the rest ran away. Later, that kitten that I thought I had killed, came back to life healthy and no longer rabid.

When I awoke, I was horrified at the dream, first off because I have two black cats I adore, second, because I’ve only killed a few small animals in my life (hunting) and they were all before I was twenty years old and I’ve not killed anything since. It’s just not who I am and I know myself pretty darn well. For Sigmund Freud’s theory to suggest that my dream represents my possible aggression or urge to kill… well, for anyone who knows me even the slightest bit, would agree that is definitely not the case.

Although I do like the thought that somehow, by preventing the little rabid thing from killing me, I inadvertently saved it from a long and horrific death.


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