Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Meaning of Dreams -- None

An article in yesterday's Science Section of the New York Times talked about a scientist's recent article letting us know that dreams, in fact, have no meaning beyond that they prepare the mind for waking life, a bit like cranking up the Model A Ford to get it started running. Probably a lot of scientific minded people have felt this way and deeply regretted that Freud and followers somehow legitimized the age-old habit of looking for meaning and even prognostication in those weird scenes that sometimes wake us and sometimes linger when we wake normally.

I've often felt that the many methods of dream analysis were all games, fun to play, full of delightful constructs no matter which set of rules one chose to play by. I really haven't taken dreams very seriously and I remember very few, probably for that very reason. But I think the mind is far more mysterious than this particular scientist believes -- mysterious in the sense of not understood and possibly almost too complex and too different to ever be truly understood. If no two snow flakes are alike, certainly no two human minds are alike, they may have the same structure but once we begin to experience -- which probably begins before birth -- the construction of memory is different for everyone and soon the construction of many other brain functions becomes different also.

Because I try to make this blog a little relevant to quilting -- and don't always try very hard -- I will take a stab at it today. I like scrap quilts as I've often said and it's almost impossible for any two to be the same. I do not like quilts that are copies of others, I do not like kits, I don't even like to see a lot of quilts made by students of the same teacher although they usually are different from one another. I like individuality, and I find it a bit disappointing, a bit sad that so many people have so little self-confidence that they do not trust their own impulses when they make quilts. That opens a huge can of worms and I don't have time to go there this evening. I'd just suggest that if you are a person who believes your dreams have meaning surely you can be a person who dares make quilts whatever way appeals to you because you believe your mind is unique and that something creative happens within it.


Nellie's Needles said...

Well said. Those who follow patterns or work up kits usually don't have a clue as to what they're missing. That's okay. They end up with successful quilts, but have missed out on an adventure.

Ladydy5 aka: Diane Yates said...

I will always wonder why some of my dreams are memorable pieces of my life and I can remember them the next morning. Some dreams I feel awaken my thoughts; to think about what my next project will be or who I need to be in contact with.
I also wonder about those snowflakes being no two alike. Who took the time to check each one. Just how many different patterns could they be.

Kass said...

I really like the connection you made between dreams and quilting and now I'm going to go downstairs and begin the quilt I've dreamed up, made out of a silky fabric with monochromatic hues of salmon. I think I'll make poofy flowers and stitch them together. I'm not a quilter, but I've had this idea for a long time so now I'm going to do it. Thank you.