What I would say to someone struggling with his or her dreams:


 By James Wadman


I have long advocated the biological and metaphysical significance of reoccurring dreams and the enlightenment that can be gained from paying attention to the storylines, the characters, and the emotions of your dreams. Despite the skepticism by many other scientists on the relevance of dreams to the waking consciousness or deeply seeded emotions, I would argue that, relevant or not, dreams can be inspiring as long as you are there to listen. However, there come times when reoccurring dreams challenge us, and they may fill us with fear or contempt, and it becomes difficult to listen – or the message is so loud that it hurts. The funny thing is, these are the dreams that are easiest to pinpoint to our actual emotions and fears, and addressing these emotions can allow you to confront your nightmares both in daylight and at night.

Identifying the real world problem is the first step, which requires a different strategy for each person—that is, a lighthouse will not always mean the same thing from person to person. If you can’t identify it, that is okay. We can still move on to the next step. I have the pleasure of seeing many people who talk on this subject execute the next step perfectly, and that is to face your dreams with strength. If you are honest with your fears of the subject matter or of your dreams in general, you are already working toward overcoming your nightmares. Fear of your dreams is never a reason to not sleep because then you will never get the chance to face your dreams. This is where the road may diverge for some people. The final step is to actually confront your dreams after contemplating the dream’s value in the real world. For some people this will mean having that dream one last time and never seeing it again, and for others that reoccurring dream will never truly go away but they will have the strength to face it whenever it surfaces.

The skeptic says, “Why is this important? After all, they are just dreams.”

Actually, it is more than that. So many people in the modern world burden stress that is too difficult to face, one of the obvious and most detrimental examples being post-traumatic stress disorder, and some of the more common examples being childhood/family issues, break-ups, and stress from the hierarchy of their job/career. All of these examples encompass emotions that can backpack straight into your dreams.

As always, I am available for questions on these guides and Q&A’s. Just leave a comment and I’ll get back to you with a comment or an entire post like this one!

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15 thoughts on “Q&A Biological and Metaphysical Function of Dreams:

  1. Amanda

    Hi, I appreciate your insight. I had another nightmare/sleep paralysis incident tonight. Much different than the other time. I met Eric Clapton in the dream and I told him my worst secrets. Then he kissed me and it felt wet and I half woke up to wake-see this animated dinosaur thing holding a thyrsus flying around in the sky. Very pleased. It was like I had given up my power by allowing something to kiss me. It started to go wrong when I was driving, in the dream, “back to home” and there was a storm of red rocks. The began to crash down and everywhere and we were also alongside water.

    I should have been completely crushed, but somehow I got out of it and I survived. I went to stay with a neighbor guy who had some kind of storm shelter with “foot windows.” I was lying on the floor enjoying the breeze from those windows when I became aware of a presence. Not a good one. It was this beautiful little nymph creature I guess I was friends with at some point. And this is where I began to go lucid, almost. I said coldly “What do you want?” And as she spoke my paralysis began “We won’t stop until we have the soul of every single person you’ve ever loved.”

    You mentioned PTSD, yes I have that. I’ve been reading a lot of alchemy texts lately, maybe this is part of my purification or something. Not very fun. The whole dream grips me as if it were an outside force. I want control, but I have the opposite.

  2. James Wadman Post author

    I wonder if you don’t expect the tides to turn and the dreams to go sour? Meeting Eric Clapton and having someone to listen sounds like a good thing. You seem to be on the right path so I wouldn’t recommend doing anything new just yet :)

  3. Amanda

    I clear my mind and try not to expect anything. Over the past 5 years, I have what most people would consider nightmares–all the time. But, I have grown a thick skin. The only ones that “get” to me now are the ones involving sleep paralysis. Sometimes I perceive I am being dragged a few inches across the bed during the worst ones. Makes me want to set up a video camera and see if I can catch it.

  4. James Wadman Post author

    I certainly know the feeling of that. Remember, you have a gift of seeing beyond what most people can — if you can turn your paralysis and lucidity into a strength then you will have very special sight of the world.

  5. Merry Hearts Medicine

    Interesting. I’m looking forward to perusing your blog.

    I wake up nearly every day with a clear recollection of my dreams. It’s kind of like my morning newspaper. ha ha The dreams are usually so strange that if I tried to analyze them I’d probably go crazy! Thankfully, my dreams rarely cause me fear like you mentioned.

    My favorite dreams are the deja vous ones that later occur in real life. When I was a teenager, I had those a lot! I woke up one day wondering who the dark-haired guy was in my dream because I couldn’t quite make out his face. A year or two later it turned out to be my boyfriend (now my husband). We were walking across a college campus. I looked up, knowing what he was about to say, and saw his face framed in front of a group of trees with a certain building in the background. Before I could think about it, I shouted “It was you! It was you!” The poor, scared guy thought I was nuts until I explained my behavior. Lol.

    Thanks for liking my post about being thankful for dirty dishes, and thanks for following my blog! I’m sorry this comment is so long. :) Have a great day!

  6. James Wadman Post author

    Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed my post. Also, that story is beautiful. I always love hearing about dreams being a positive force in people’s lives. It truly is a blessing.

  7. Broken❤Lullabies

    My dreams are somewhat opposite although I’ve had some bad ones. I’m not saying I have all good dreams but what are your thoughts about dreaming something and it happens either the next day or slightly after? Of course I have my own thoughts about dreams but I’d like to hear yours if you don’t mind?

  8. James Wadman Post author

    This is a difficult concept to grasp for me because I have had dreams that foreshadow or even directly portray events in the near future. However, I don’t think that there is a necessary “future sight” for dreams like this to occur. Instead, I believe our minds absorb information from the environment and day-to-day activities and construct dreams that may be prophetic, may be reflective, or might just be chaotic and random. We often remember those dreams that are prophetic because they coincide with actual life events, although they might be one in a million. I believe therefore that it is only coincidence when dreams tell the future. Nonetheless, I don’t want to discount the value of any one of these three dreams I stated. A dream that tells the future is not worthless just because it is a coincidence. Dreams can be incredible and powerful even if they do not surpass the limitations of scientific law. In summary, my answer to your question is just that these prophetic dreams are just incidental predictions of the mind when all the information is processed during dreams. There is no convincing scientific evidence really for anything at the moment, so I also want to tell you that whatever your thoughts are will be just as plausible as mine!

  9. bjsscribbles

    I love your post it is so insightful, I have ptsd at the moment I am doing quite well, but when I first left my marriage of 35yrs of d.v. my dreams were so violent. Now my dreams are peaceful except for loosing Charlie my dog, Those dreams are full of emotion it is as though he is still here looking after me. I believe dreams are with us and help us through our lives in a positive way

  10. James Wadman Post author

    It’s always good to hear an optimistic perspective on dreams. Good for you to see the light in loss.

  11. remanandhra

    How would you define ”metaphysical significance” or simply ”metaphysical”? I think it’s important, because so many misunderstandings may result when we do not clearly define and state such terms, especially is scientific community.

  12. James Wadman Post author

    metaphysical: of or related to concepts understood through abstract reasoning

    In the article I discuss biological and metaphysical significance, in terms of defining how dreams function objectively/scientifically versus how we give meaning to them with or without direct evidence.

  13. me

    Your discussion is interesting and insightful, thank you. I’ve been told I’m a lucid dreamer, I’m not sure if I believe that or not. However, I do believe there comes a time when we/I can direct my dreams. Or need to anyway. For me, that has been essential…after years of not sleeping longer than 2-3 hours at a time (unaided), horrific nightmares, and ptsd… I’ve come to some kind of acceptance that that is the way I am…I sort of get the biological aspect of that…that it is hardwired into my being as such, and my dreams have reflected that…I’ve made peace with some of them…real world and dream world. And I’m working on the rest. I think I’m going to enjoy your blog :) thank you for sharing!

  14. James Wadman Post author

    It is always good to make peace with your nightmares when possible. One positive thing about the “biological aspect” is that most everything in your biological hardware is programmable and, in this case, reversible. There is a difference between making peace and triumphantly overcoming your nightmares, and the deeper they are integrated into your psyche, the more challenging this task can be.
    Thanks for stopping by– you are always welcome!

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