Everyone dreams of escape at some point. Life has a habit of pushing you into corners, dead-ends, psychological cul-de-sacs, and after a while screaming gets old and you dream instead.
It’s fascinating how when our realities are discordant with our souls, our brains try to comfort us by spinning fantasies. I wonder whether it’s a defense mechanism – perhaps primitive cave hunters, when they did not catch any game, went to sleep imagining the taste of dripping, fatty meat on their tongues. In fact, I think that’s very probable.
As someone who doesn’t get along very well with society at the best of times, dreaming has been my salvation. Sometimes, dreaming can be aided with the use of books and movies. Other times, it’s just you, your own mind and a magical, perfect world before your eyes. A current dream of mine, if you’re interested, is quite an old one – I still harbor in my heart a desire to escape to a tiny little hippie community somewhere at the edge of a forest with gurgling streams and beautiful flowers and enough leisure time to read and write and imagine until the end of our days. Doing this is a perfectly normal reaction to dissatisfaction with your life or current reality or the world you live in. At the same time, I also think dreaming of more idyllic existences is a warning sign of how off-track you are in regards to where you want to be in life. It’s a hidden message from your heart, saying, “I don’t like this path. Let’s choose a different way.”
Then again, maybe reality simply cannot live to one’s glorious expectations. Maybe even if our lives reach the pinnacle of perfection, the euphoria would only last a few days, and afterwards the perfection would become the normality. Maybe human beings, as future-orientated creatures, weren’t built for constant satisfaction. We can adapt to terrible situations with astonishing ease, but this also means we adapt quite quickly to wonderful situations too. It’s like winning the lottery. For the first few days, you’d be ecstatic, and you’re happiness meter would rocket upwards and break in a cascade of orange and yellow fireworks, but after a month or so, you’d return to feeling quite normal again.
That’s why I think dreaming, whether it be by yourself or with the aid of dark scrawls on pieces of paper, is one of the only ways to truly live. I mean, people always say it’s good to experience things for yourself, but haven’t you ever enjoyed the anticipation of a trip rather than the trip itself? Visions are always rosier in one’s mind, and the reality is often filled with niggling, irritating things that never existed in your imagination. For instance, the reality of the hippie dream might involve mosquitoes and wild animals and doing one’s business in holes dug in the ground.
Dreams are like jewels that fade and grow dim once you pluck them from your brain and transplant them into reality. Perhaps it’s better to dream a thousand dreams than experience different realities. Perhaps escaping from our current reality allows us to blossom in the transcendent realities of our minds. Perhaps the living is in the dreaming itself. And whose to say that dreams are less substantial than reality?
Just a thought to chew on.