If you’re interested in spirituality, personal development, growth, and learning, you may have heard before the idea that life is like a dream. When I first heard that, I struggled to wrap my mind around it. And I got excited, too. This was a completely different approach to what I knew, and I was intrigued. What if my solid waking life in the material world was indeed a dream?
Now some years later, through thinking about it, reading books, and personal experience, I know for sure that it is. One thing that helped me with the realisation was when I started to have OBEs (out-of-body experiences) back in 2015. Again, I had to immerse myself in books and reflection to make sense of it. The notion that I was leaving my body was fascinating, although it did not fit with my model of the world in which I am not, and do not ‘have’ a body. As I read, learned, came to conclusions, discarded them, read some more, and reflected on my ever-changing life, it suddenly occurred to me that all I’m going through are levels of experience. If everything is just a dream, then the only difference between sleeping dreams, waking dreams, and OBEs is simply the level of consciousness I am operating at. In perfect synchronicity, I had a conversation with a good friend recently about the levels of love. What is love? Sex for fun? Reproduction? Friendly affection? Or the unconditional love that comes from understanding we are all One? Well, all of those is the answer. Shades and fluctuations inside the concept of love only lead to a deeper exploration of the subject as a whole. As with the dream of existence.
That’s one thing I wanted to share which maybe resonates with you. Or you may wonder what it all means, and why it should matter to you. Personally, when I think about the idea that life is a dream and everything out there an expression of my own consciousness, the image that comes to mind is of letting out a deep breath of cold winter air. Contained in that puff of freezing steam I can see is all of existence. We consistently bubble up our experience into being. For me, it’s almost like when I’m writing a book, creating and becoming every character in the story, every mountain, every emotion, constantly hovering in between losing myself in the tale, and remembering that I am its creator. Why this matters in the material world is because we look ‘outside’ at our life and take our cue from our circumstances. But if we realise that nothing out there exists independently of us, then existence becomes fun. And I have been experimenting with that concept! For instance, I live in a block of flats with paper walls. When the guy next door coughs, I can hear him. And somebody’s moved in recently who is a little loud. When he starts going on late at night as I want to sleep, it’s less than ideal and it used to drive me nuts. But this is where my learning and reflection come in. I truly believe this life is a dream of my own creation. And I also believe everything in the dream happens for a positive reason. This then leads to an interesting exercise. I used to ask myself why other people in the building did not get annoyed with this guy, and now I understand they probably can’t hear him. Remember, this is for me, and they don’t really exist… What bothers me isn’t really the noisy neighbour, it’s my definitions of what the noise means. In fact, there is no noise, no neighbour, nothing but my own creation of a purposeful experience.
If you can think in this way and learn what a seemingly negative event you created is there to teach you, then the experience will end. Simply because I have made my peace with the ‘noise’ inside my own head, there is no need to hear it reflected on the outside anymore. The building has been a lot quieter since I came to this realisation and put it into practice. And yes, in case you were wondering, this is how you can manipulate your reality with the power of your own thoughts. This is how you go from one level of the dream to the next. And keep going; far from a boring slog, the one thing I have noticed so far is that it gets more fun, interesting, fascinating and exciting the deeper awake you go. So, do the work, and level up too.
“All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.” – Jean-Paul Sartre.