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by Archaeology Newsroom

Time and Dream

The psychoanalytic theory argues that dreams, unlike the unconscious, are not bound by time limitations, to the extend they are ruled by the subconscious. Everything in the dream is experienced much more directly than in the reality of alertness. In parallel with the fluidity that characterizes the convictions and pursuits of man, a feeling of urgency or anxiety, a great narcissistic participation, a large investment in action and in people are components of the dream. The time orientation of the dreamer is strictly towards the present. Any indication that any action in a dream represents memories or desires of the childhood -instigated by desires of the past- is a masqueraded sign and it must be interpreted through the coherence of the dreamer. The experience of the dreamer is ageless and represents his personality in its everlasting features; furthermore, it functions as a notion of himself, a notion that is related closer with previous desires than with the present age and the social or professional status of the dreamer. Based on a series of cases Freud (1900, 1933) has pointed out that time in a dream is expressed in terms of spatial relations, where the apparent meaning of the dream transforms time into space. However, there are dreams in which the concept of time is perfectly clear as clock or calendar time and not as a time implied in pictures of space and motion. It is known for years that the presence of the objective time in dreams symbolizes a variety of notions, usually concerning past experiences of time, such as anniversaries, deadlines, destiny, death. The direct reference to time in conditions of disappointment or urgency usually contains the direct experience of time as continuity. Such an experience has often to do with conflicts concerning the superego, relationships that cause a deep guilt. In reality, the dream is the state closer to the mystical experience a human can claim. The experience of nirvana in ones dream seems to depend on his ability to ignore or disconnect all sensational data from their objective source, lying in the outer world or in his very body.