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The Wondrous Tracks of Dreams

February 17th, 2006 (11:52 am)

I had a dream about Marrakesh...

I didn't know anything about Marrakesh.  But it appeared to me anyway.

[I've been keeping a dreamlog for some years now.  You can even add it to your RSS newsgathering service, so it will magically appear at your site anytime I update.  It will aid in your own dreaming by adding the one incontestable prerequisite; it will put you to sleep.  There are really no duller stories than someone else's dream...]

In the current Atlantic there is a travel section, and of course it features Morocco.  It came through the mail some days after the dream.  In the medina of Marrakesh, the old city, it is very frantic with the amateur tour guides, and yet it is very peaceful in the lovely seaside villages of Essaouira and Sidi Ifni.   Morocco was a French protectorate, you know, but the Spanish and the Portugese occupied this coast. 

There is even an island off  Essaouira, called Mogador, a nineteenth century penal colony and current hatchery for gulls.  I think maybe something comes into my dreams from elsewhere.

Once I read a very good story about schizophrenia called I Never Promised You A Rose Garden, in which a young lady carried an alien colony in her head.  She was constantly visited from the land of Yr, way off in the sky somewhere, and her psychiatrist tried a very logical argument to convince her of her delusion.

She said, no one from Yr knows anymore than you do.  That should have fixed it.  It should fix all religion, in fact, for how can centuries of these frauds maintain credibility as the agency of a divine being if they know much less than the studious secular?  In fact, the Dark Ages were merely the attempt by the stuporsticious to dam the floods of knowing.  Worked for a time.

And so I lost patience with all the hoaxers who tell me they are in tune with divinity (which is only a sort of candy after all).  There are past life travelers who have been everywhere, from the Garden of Eden to the Crucifiction to Alex the Great, and yet somehow they forgot to bring back any but the most superficial homilies, as if death bleaches out all sense and renders us all trite simpletons. 

But what if dreams teach you something you didn't know?  I wonder.  I'm listening.  There is in that dreamlog another which suggests a knowing not my own.  Here is the relevant portion of it:

I am rushing through a moving train. I have to tell Reloj something I've just read.

It was in Schopenhauer. See, the way I understand it, is, you cannot substitute one string of longing and desire for another. I see it as a golf ball. You cut into the cover and you unwind one length of thread and stretch it out on the table. Then you take another and you substitute it.

Schopenhauer says you can't do that. Any impulse or drive is so deeply rooted there is no way to synthesize another for it. I go to tell Reloj that, rushing through the cars, out one door onto the platform and into the next.

I wondered about where this had come from, and so I went to the Usenet newsgroups alt.philosophy and asked:

Following is a discussion resulting from a question I posted in the USENET group alt.philosophy about this dream:

Doubting Timus wrote:
> I had a dreammmm the other night...
> Here it is, the entry for 4 Oct 2005:
> http://tremonius.blogspot.com/
> I've read little to no Schopenhauer, and I'm wondering if by chance there is
> anything in this dream relating to sublimation but not quite which might
> resonate anywhere in Schopenhauer?

Yes, much;

Arthur Schopenhauer (February 22, 1788 - September 21, 1860) was a
German philosopher. He is most famous for his work The World as Will
and Representation. He is commonly known for having espoused a sort of
philosophical pessimism that saw life as being essentially evil,
futile, and full of suffering.

However, upon closer inspection, in accordance with Eastern thought,
especially Buddhist, he saw salvation, deliverance, or escape from
suffering in aesthetic contemplation, sympathy for others, and ascetic

...Schopenhauer's starting point was Kant's division of the universe
into phenomenon and noumenon, claiming that the noumenon was the same
as that in us which we call Will. It is the inner content and the
driving force of the world. For Schopenhauer, human will had
ontological primacy over the intellect; in other words, desire is
understood to be prior to thought, and, in a parallel sense, "will" is
said to be prior to "being".

In solving/alleviating the fundamental problems of life, Schopenhauer
was rare among philosophers in considering philosophy and logic less
important (or "less effective") than art, certain types of charitable
practice ("loving kindness", in his terms), and certain forms of
religious discipline; Schopenhauer concluded that discursive thought
(such as philosophy and logic) could neither touch nor transcend the
nature of desire -- i.e., the will.

In The World as Will and Idea, Schopenhauer posited that humans living
in the realm of objects are living in the realm of desire, and thus are
eternally tormented by that desire (his idea of the role of desire in
life is similar to that of Vedanta-Hinduism and Buddhism, and
Schopenhauer draws attention to these similarities himself).
Is it possible we all have strange visitors in the night?


Posted by: elizabeth (e_a_b)
Posted at: February 17th, 2006 09:24 pm (UTC)

I need to preface this comment by acknowledging the fact that I'm a commercial interior designer...that said, I've often wondered about the same sort of question in respect to architecture and design within my dreams.

When I dream about a building or a room I have no recolection of having seen before, have I designed them in my sleeping hours?

I often wake up and jot down or sketch the spaces I dream about.

Posted by: tremonius (tremonius)
Posted at: February 18th, 2006 06:01 am (UTC)
Seeeing and Remembering

That's a very interesting dream idea, designs when asleep.

I admire those with visual memory, awareness. I have none. If you slipped up behind me and covered my eyes and demanded it, I wouldn't be able to tell you the color of the sweater I'm wearing.

My dreamscape thus features many dark corridors, and vague rooms, even the ones I know well. It's as if I don't trust myself not to spoil the continuity in trying to remember, say, the bedroom where we grew up.

I was pleased to note a study recently which reported that glimpses were only able to grasp four objects. To test visual shorterm memory they set up the study like this.

In the huge sprawling Sprouel Plaza of UC Berkeley, students, usually in pairs, would be encountered by one asking directions. This was not unusual at all. And so the two subjects would begin explaining, but be interrupted by a couple of workers carrying a large mirror, which would pass between the lost frosh and her new guides, who would resume the instructions as soon as the workers were past, maybe seven seconds later.

It was the rare subject who recognized that the lost student to whom they completed their instructions was not the one who had first asked them for help. She was not even dressed in the same colors.

I felt better after reading that.

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