Dreams: A Quick History and Their Analysis
Clay tablets dating back to between 3000 and 4000 B.C. include interpretations of dreams that were written down at that time.
We have always been captivated by our dreams and have made it a point to better comprehend them for as long as we have been able to communicate with one another about them.
Some people in more primitive communities were unable to differentiate between the worlds of waking reality and the worlds of dreaming.
Another option is for them to just decide not to differentiate between the two. They realized that the dream world was not just an extension of the actual world but also a more powerful realm than the real world.
During the time of the Greeks and Romans, it was common practice to interpret one’s dreams in a spiritual light. They were seen as being communications sent either directly from the gods or from the afterlife.
The individuals living throughout that historical period turned to their dreams for guidance on what they should do or the path they should follow.
They thought that dreams could both warn them of the future and forecast it. People even erected special shrines where they might go to sleep in the hopes that a message would be sent to them in their dreams.
These shrines can be seen all over the world. Their faith in the efficacy of a dream was so powerful that it even influenced the decisions that were made by political and military authorities.
In fact, dream interpreters have been known to accompany military commanders into combat in order to aid in the development of a battle plan.
The ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle held the view that dreams were the product of the body’s natural processes. It was possible to detect sickness and foresee the start of illnesses by analyzing one’s dreams.
In the time of the Hellenistic civilization, the power of dreams to cure illness was the primary concern of dream interpretation.
The therapeutic potential of dreaming inspired the construction of temples known as Asclepius. People with illnesses were led to think that by spending the night at these temples, they would receive healing messages in their dreams.
Dream interpreters were even able to assist medicine men in their diagnosis of patients’ conditions. It was often thought that dreams might provide important information to medical professionals about what was wrong with a patient.
In ancient Egypt, priests were also responsible for dream interpretation. The Egyptians wrote their dreams down using a system called hieroglyphics.
People who had dreams that were particularly vivid and profound were thought to be blessed and were treated as if they were exceptional. People who have the ability to read dreams are held in high esteem and are regarded as possessing a heavenly talent.
One way to look at dreaming is as a real location, one that your spirit and soul leave behind each night in order to go and visit.
The ancient Chinese had the belief that when a person died, their spirit would leave their body and enter this realm. On the other hand, if they are startled awake, their spirit may not be able to find its way back to their body.
As a result of this, some Chinese people in today’s society are suspicious of alarm clocks. A number of Native American communities and certain ancient Mexican civilizations believe in the existence of a separate dream reality.
They thought that their ancestors may appear to them in their dreams and take on forms other than those of humans, such as animals or plants.
They consider dreams to be a means by which they may pay their ancestors a visit and maintain communication with them. Dreams also assisted in orienting them in the direction of their life’s goal or duty.
During the Middle Ages, people had a negative view on dreams and believed that the pictures inside them were devilish temptations.
It was believed that the devil would plant wicked ideas in the minds of individuals when they were defenseless in the condition of sleep. He attempted to deceive us and steer us in the wrong direction by doing his dirty job via our dreams.
At the beginning of the 19th century, people thought that dreams were caused by things like nervousness, a commotion in the home, or even indigestion.
As a result, there was really no point to it at all. In the latter part of the 19th century, Sigmund Freud brought back into focus the relevance of dreams, as well as the need that they be interpreted. He was a pioneer in the field of dream analysis.
When we go back to these old societies, we can see that individuals have always had the tendency to interpret their dreams. Only the Bible has more than seven hundred references to different kinds of dreams.