The official site of the sleep-deprived

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Can Dreams Diagnose Health Problems?

About 2,400 years ago, the ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, who’s sometimes called the Father of Medicine, postulated that the body was able to sense the coming of disease before said disease took hold and impaired the body. Often the dreamer received a warning regarding the illness––in a dream. According to Hippocrates, who also knew a fair amount of astrology (like all learned people of the time) the appearance of the sun, moon, or stars in a person’s dream symbolized his or her physical state. If the stars in the dream glowed brightly, said Hippocrates, the body was in good shape and functioning as it should. However, if the stars seemed dull––or if a cosmic disaster of some sort occurred in the dream––it meant a disease was developing in the body.

Holistic medicine proposes a body/mind/spirit link––the three levels of being cannot be separated. Even allopathic medicine now recognizes that the mind and emotions  influence physical conditions. Before an ailment, whether it’s a common cold or cancer, manifests physically it may have existed in a nonphysical form for quite a long time. If we accept a body/mind/spirit connection, it’s seems reasonable that in the dream state we might get clued into something that’s gone amiss, long before the information filters down into our waking lives.

 Signs and symbols in your dreams may warn of potential health problems, although those warnings are likely to be cloaked in symbolism. Here’s an example. During a very busy period in my life, I dreamed I was driving dangerously fast and wrecked my car. Cars, in dreams, often represent the physical body and your direction in life. My dream was warning me that if I didn’t stop pushing myself so hard I could damage my health.

Sometimes our dreams suggest cures when we’re ill or offer advice about how we can heal ourselves physically and emotionally. Dreams connect us with a level of awareness some people call the Akasic Records, a cosmic data bank that holds all the knowledge that has ever existed. The great psychic Edgar Cayce never studied medicine, yet by tapping into the Akasic Records in his dreams, he discovered remedies that helped thousands of people.

Sometimes our dreams illuminate health problems that could develop if we don’t take corrective action. Dreams also may tell us that a treatment we’re undergoing is right or wrong for us. A colleague of mine once dreamed she stopped her car at a gas station. Instead of pumping gasoline into her tank, the attendant used a hose-like apparatus to suck out decaying matter that was clogging up her car. At the time she was undergoing a healthful, cleansing program and her dream told her that the process was working.

If you want your dreams to give you advice about a health situation, ask for insights before falling asleep. Record your dreams and keep a log of dream symbols, as Hippocrates did, to understand how your subconscious speaks to you. What do your dreams tell you about your health? Have you gotten advice in your dreams that you’ve applied to your own health situations? Have your dreams helped you to avert physical disease, or perhaps nip it in the bud?

Friday, March 12, 2010

Spiritual Hives

In one of my first posts I admitted to an obsession with searching for the next big thing. I’m convinced that once I find the thing my life will change so profoundly that it will redefine my very existence. A new king-sized mattress came close. Bio-identical hormones came closer. But there’s always an intangible something still missing that I can’t quite put my finger on …. so, I keep looking.

For way too many years I’ve been addicted to anything and everything self-help. A definite off-shoot of the thing. With unwavering certainty, I know that the next book, the next tape series, the next DVD, the next Omega workshop or Brother Dyer live appearance – will be the thing that finally leads to my personal satori. Even my blog partner, Skye, half-jokingly talks about the need for an intervention and 12-step program. Hmmmm.

I’ve always thought that reading self-help books before falling asleep was the way to go – let the sub-conscious mull it over, construct an action plan and all that. So the other night after an hour of reading the latest and greatest about becoming a new and improved, excuse-free me – there was no way I could fall asleep. I couldn’t sleep because my mind was frantically trying to assimilate, organize, and somehow not forget what I had just read – the tips, the quotes, the secrets, the exercises, the 4 main categories with the 14 essential bullet points … I was an information-overload mess.

At any given moment I’m trying to be compassionate, feel gratitude, be in the now, focus my attention, let go of judgment, watch my breathing, work through my fear, let go of attachment, feel love toward everyone and everything,visualize, keep my ego in check, lose my self-importance, meditate, find my life’s purpose, take responsibility, manifest my destiny, stay balanced, get in touch with my higher self, and, oh yeah, remember that visualization without feeling doesn’t count – all done in a blissful state of joy, while understanding that it’s nothing but a universal, holographic dream anyway.

I’m supposed to keep all these balls in the air every waking moment, yet remain relaxed and detached? I have an in-box of motivation quotes dating back to the early 80s that I can’t bear to delete, reams of inspiring quotes I’ll never read again, every personal transformation guru’s website bookmarked in “my favorites” … this is insane. My obsession with enlightenment is seriously stressing me out.

So that’s it, you’re all going to have to go on the vision quest without me. I need a break. In the true spirit of detachment, I’m hitting the spiritual pause button. I’m going back to reading Stephen King and Architectural Digest, cancelling every emailed motivational quote of the day, deleting Amazon’s s self-help book suggestion of the week, and taking myself off of Oprah’s “Live Your Best Life” mailing list.

I no longer want to live my best life. Right now, I just want to live.