What about dreams?


#1

Not sure if this is the right forum, mods please change if needed.

Anyway, my question is what role do dreams play in our lives? I understand that most of our dreaming is our brain archiving the days events, thoughts, etc. into our short/long term memory. I also know that many messages from God have come through dreams for many people in the Bible.

What does the Church say…if anything about dreams? Are we allowed to try and interpret them, should we look for meaning or messages in them?

I’m curious to see what you all think about this and whether or not dreams mean anything to you.


#2

in general the classic advice of Christian spiritual direction is to ignore dreams and anything else that sounds, looks or feels like a direct message from God perceived by the senses. If the dreams, locutions, apparitions, messages etc. continue they are to be brought to one’s confessor or spiritual director for discernment. While admitting the possibility that God may choose to communicate with someone through a dream I think it is far more likely the dream represents normal brain activity processing the sense impressions received during the day as a natural part of the sleep cycle.


#3

Hi Lexee,

Here is a short piece on this subject by Fr John Hardon. I hope it may be of help to you:

The personal or professional analysis or night (sleep) dreams, to ascertain their meaning. Night dreams are dreams in the proper sense of the term. In sleep, which is by no means a passive state, a person’s sense of activity is not dominated by his higher faculties of reason and will. This sense activity, when natural, is due to a variety of traceable causes, such as the physical condition of the body, external stimuli, such as talking or the ringing of a bell, or psychical factors, such as desires, fears, past thoughts and experiences. Consequently there is some value in dream interpretation, in as much as human science may derive from dream analysis some useful data for the treatment and healing of sick individuals, especially those afflicted with some psychological abnormality or disease. If such therapy is indicated, the person should seek out a thoroughly reputable and honest therapist, who will not advise or do anything that is contrary to Christian moral teaching.

On the other hand, to believe in one’s own dreams or those related by others as foretelling future events is a sin of superstition. The exceptional cases where dreams are of supernatural origin are to be judged on their own merits.

All evidence from Scripture and the lives of the saints indicates that when God makes use of dreams as an extraordinary means of communication he also makes sure the person realizes where the dream originated. The standard rules for discernment of spirits are to be applied in case of doubt whether a dream is of supernatural origin.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon’s Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission

catholicreference.net/index.cfm?id=33227


#4

Dreams may just be the brain’s way of stimulating itself while you sleep.

Surpressed feelings and thoughts seem to surface when you let your guard down also.


#5

I’ve had dreams where I took it as a sign from God…Like who I was going to marry, and what he wants in my life.
Hmm…is that a sin of superstition?

Those dream dramatically changed my life…so…:shrug:


#6

I thought this section from Fr Hardon’s article explained it pretty well:

All evidence from Scripture and the lives of the saints indicates that when God makes use of dreams as an extraordinary means of communication he also makes sure the person realizes where the dream originated. The standard rules for discernment of spirits are to be applied in case of doubt whether a dream is of supernatural origin.

Speaking for myself, I have never in my life had a dream that I felt was divinely inspired, so perhaps I’m not the best person to even be discussing this :blush:


#7

I have had dreams that came literally true – in detail. Places I had never been that later turned out to exist and so on, and I once dreamt my GM’s sister was organizing a family picnic and asked me why I never talked to her. The phone woke me up. it was my mother telling me that the woman I was dreaming about (whom I barely knew) had just died – at a family picnic where she was doing most or all the work. She said her arm hurt, lay down and died of a heart attack.


#8

Thank you, I’m sorry I missed that. Well, that good news for me at least.

[quote=strngrnrth]I have had dreams that came literally true – in detail. Places I had never been that later turned out to exist and so on, and I once dreamt my GM’s sister was organizing a family picnic and asked me why I never talked to her. The phone woke me up. it was my mother telling me that the woman I was dreaming about (whom I barely knew) had just died – at a family picnic where she was doing most or all the work. She said her arm hurt, lay down and died of a heart attack.
[/quote]

That is so sad :frowning:

I’ve never had anything like that happen to me, but I’ve dreamt that I was all alone in a field of dead grass. In the middle of the field was Jesus on the Cross. He said something to me, and a brilliant blue light surrounded me, and I woke up. I believe that was the time I started taking my faith more seriously.

The other one was just of …someone I know…Well, I liked her and I really just wanted to go out with her simply because I liked her, but after this dream…whew.
I was in the courtyard of my parish center, and it was practically deserted. I found the young lady’s younger brother in the courtyard and asked hims where everyone was. He started acting squirrelly and said something about some engagement thing.
Suddenly, a ton of people come out and surround us, and with this crowd was the young woman I am taken with, and her father. He was leading her towards me with her on his arm, and he kissed her on the cheek and put her hands in mine. The look she gave me was that of pure joy. And I’ll tell you that never in my entire life have I felt so happy. Awake or asleep.
The scary thing is that I remember EVERY little detail. The shade of her lipstick, the clothes she and her family were wearing. EVERYTHING. I even remember that a priest from our parish was there!

I took both these dreams a signs, as I said before. And so far, they’ve helped and/or seem to be on the way to coming true.


#9

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