Coping: With the Oneironaut’s Notebook

You may not remember what a Oneironaut is, so let me lift a definition from the UrbanDictionary to help you out:

“A person who explores dream worlds, usually associated with lucid dreaming. “

And yes, this morning’s comment is about another one of my lucid dreams, but a very curious aspect of them which is worth noting, and that is why I am writing this down for you.

Let’s begin with the dream:

In this one, I was with a group of family and friends – some of the same people I know from this life along with others and we were at a summertime party.  It was something like a huge block party and there were 25, or so,wandering from home to home,  people chatting abut this and that – when suddenly it occurred to the group that this would be a marvelous time to visit Europe.

With little further adieu, we suddenly all found ourselves at an airport in what felt like Copenhagen and we were going to take a recently added high speed train across northern Germany, visit the northern tier of Russian cities, and then return to where we’d come from.

One thing was different, however, and remarkably so:  The geography.  Across the whole northern side of German the coastline was littered with small islands.  I thought that was curious.

The group was shepherded into two rail cars (large, long, and quite comfortable) to begin a short trip on a low-speed line to a major station in Germany.  We were admonished by a tour guide to stay together because when we got to the “big station” there would be a zillion people and it would be easy to get lost.

Well, sure enough, we got lost and while the main body of the tour was off on the high-speed train to the east, but three or four of us were separated and then someone in the crowd picked my wallet and the next thing you know, we were on a low-speed train back to the west (off where the airport was located).  Near Copenhagen. 

About the only thing I had left was a small green card made of clear/green plastic and it contained a unique identifier, but I knew it was not electronic in nature.

We rode a couple of trains east, at first, thinking we would catch up with our tour group but after two short hops abandoned the idea and decided to return to the airport and head for home.

There was one other weird thing.  (Other than my card identifying me as passenger 477 or 471):  We sat behind the engineers (there were two) and on the trip west,. the railway was occasionally obstructed by self-running machines that were moving slowly around the tracks.

They weren’t doing anything…just being a nuisance.  So the engineers would slow, bump them out of the way and then continue.  The significant part was the conversation about how bad robotics were and how they almost ruined the world.

Since we had taken  a convertible for the ride from the trains to the airport, it fell to me (once we had started through the boarding line) to run back outside and put the top up on the car, since rain was threatening.  There were two other cars – both convertibles which I thought curious – and their owners were having a very difficult time as their tops were both broken and wouldn’t fit tight.  On e wouldn’t go on at all and the owner was cursing he’d have to drive it to a shop in the rain to get it fixed.

Back inside, I wandered back through the line and had a short conversation with an attendant about how it was that a metal detector had failed to pick up the brass buttons on a blue blazer I was wearing.  That was indicated by a simple, cheesy meter that was built into a counter we walked past.  Hardly a modern metal detector, at all.

There was a definite air of surreal to the whole adventure; the kind of slightly over-done shadows as though the contrast had been turned up a bit higher than necessary.

But then I woke and noticed the whole adventure has only taken about 50 minutes.  Elaine had gotten up at 3:04 (I noticed the clock) and my alarm goes off every (damn) morning at 4 AM on the button.

So why mention this dream at all?

I mean other than look for lost/missing tourists in northern Germany/northern Europe in headlines for the next couple of days?

We it’s because of the robotic platforms that were interfering with the operation of the railroad as three of us headed back west.

There were no computers anywhere in the dream.

And I don’t mean like “just this one dream…”  I mean that’s what I was thinking about from 4:00 AM until 4:34 AM this morning…trying to figure out why there are no computers in my dreams.

Occasionally, there is an autonomous something (like these useless things that clogged the rail line) but they were held in contempt.  The was no overarching machinery except of the sort that would be around if the world of technology had been flash-frozen in about 1945, or so.  But definitely pre-transistor and pre-atomic bomb.

And that all set me thinking along two lines of inquiry.

The first was whether there’s more truth to the old nursery rhyme/song “…merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, Life is but a dream…”

Is it possible that the world we share is actually a large “group dream” and that “real life” is this other realm which hasn’t achieved the same “dreamlike” technology and which has been flash-frozen with basic electronics before the A-bomb?

You can wonder what this world would “dream like” from over there. 

I mention it because as much time as we spend dreaming, and I’m pretty comfortable saying this, you can over time actually begin to “map” that world  – the one we dream of.  The topography is different, so is the lighting, and even specifics of the geography are different.  Those islands of Northern Germany over toward Denmark don’t appear on “this world” maps.

Copenhagen – in this life  – is north of Germany, not West.  But perhaps that is how or why we have such a strong collective concern about crustal shifts, about Charles Hapgood’s theory, and all the rest of it.

It could be “print through” from a life/place where it has already happened.  Or, not.

The second reason for mentioning it is the odd lack of computers in my dreams.

Oh, sure, there are some basic electronics; steam gauges is what we pilots refer to old-school instruments as.  But thinking back, not a single LCD or television has appeared in one of my dreams in 60+ years, as far as I can remember.

And that’s where I was from 4:25 until 4:34 this morning.

Are dreams telling us something very important about robotics and computers?   Like “They are very bad for you and given enough research, they will learn to hunt and kill you”?

I’m sure you saw the story last week about a new Russian combat robot being on display and a month or three back, there was the quadruped the US military is interested in weaponizing.

There is a lot of discussion in religious circles about robots – all the way back to our talk a year or longer ago when my friends up at The Chronicle Project ( mentioned how the reinterpretation of ancient texts points toward robots with laser swords guarding the Garden of Eden.

The prohibition which has come down to us about idolatry us one of the few major points of agreement among many religions:  Christians, Jews, Hindus, Muslims, the list goes on – all have these very intense warnings about idolatry is bad for you.

Not only are my dreams idol-free, but as I noticed this morning, they are also remarkably computer-free and even those small nuisances before the westbound train were clearly operating below the Altair kind of level and certainly no 8088 or later.  They were like brain-damaged artifacts.

Considering the thousands of hours I’ve spent with computers, it’s totally refreshing that they haven’t followed me into my sleep space.   Coding in macro languages,, lots of HTML,PHP,a bit of C, SQL,VFP4-9, dBase….none of it has followed “over.”

I can tell you how to fly there – in the dream realms –  the deep hum in the chest that can’t be done with Ego present..  I can tell you about strange micro technology in the fog-shrouded valley’s of the southern Andes that produces power for basic home use. And I can tell you of cruises, plentiful food, adventures, shopping, crystal clear waters and a thousand things more.   But I haven’t seen computers there.  Not a one.

Just maybe that’s a kind of Heaven’s Gate – which some things don’t or can’t pass.  And if so, it’s probably something we could all stand to do a lot more thinking about.  Is “heaven” off-limits to machine intelligence?

When  major religions agree something is bad, as they do on the topic of idolatry,  and we are “arming idols” I’m just guessing that’s a very bad thing.  Did idols/robots almost do us in before?

This seems an odd  line of inquiry from a guy who talks to his Echo and DragonSpeaks. But those don’t follow, either.

I’ve also never heard a phone ring in one of my dreams, either.  Sure is a peaceful and happy place, this dreamland. 

Write when you break-even,



Coping: With the Oneironaut’s Notebook — 14 Comments

  1. “Did idols/robots almost do us in before?”

    Flashing back to “Battlestar Galactica”…”All this has happened before, and it will happen again.”

    Cylons in our future, I fear.

  2. After working in Stock options for several years, I have nightmares about working at my terminal on the floor, but I was never working in programs, software, just data input in the CBOE’s system. During the 80’s early 90’s. So almost/kinda a computer in dreams.

  3. “no computers in dreams” is your key to lucid dreaming. ever see waking life?

  4. Thanks for the info about the forbidden worship of idols. Makes one wonder why the Abrahamic religions are afraid of those who worship someone other than their single ‘GOD.’ Much to be afraid of I’d say. Reading early history of the Christians, one finds lots of ‘harvesting the souls’ type language used by the clergy/propagandists. If you want your soul to be harvested then by all means be a Judeo-Christian/Muslim. Isis is one the earliest ‘idols’ worshiped by Egyptians and look at her now, a terrorist group. Greece, too, had many idols but have all been erased by the Abrahamic followers. Egypt/Greece/Italy are being destroyed as I type, the major ‘many gods/idols’ worshipers. Everyone/thing ever associated with ‘false’ idols will eventually be cleansed from the planet.

    Why are the majority of Jews (originator of the monotheism) now Atheists? Did ‘GOD’ ever truly exist? HHHmmm

  5. Interesting post about the dreamscape. Just last night I had a dream where my wife and I were in a nature setting, soaking in a perfectly clear pond. We decided to take a picture and had some sort of tablet but it did not work. No real display, fake buttons, etc. It was pink and looked more like a toy tablet than a real one. Frustrating in the dream, a bit of a relief in reality!

  6. In a more just world there would be a general amnesty for pot related “crimes”. Guess which country has more people under lock and key? In states where pot is legal are there still pot “criminals” in jail?

  7. thought your blog might have some decent information – until i read the bull about a vaccine to autism link. THERE IS NO LINK. another site to ignore.

  8. About the pot dealer who got life, I read the story and was kind of appalled at this quote,

    “That means there will be no publicly released vote count or minutes from the hearing or subsequent meetings. The board currently has six members appointed by the governor to six-year terms, and it has a heavy load. It convened 9,797 parole hearings in 2013, more than 800 a month.”

    Even being kind and assuming they meet for 20 days in a month, that means at least 40 hearings a day. Given an 8 hour day, if they worked that long and took no breaks, that’s 5 an hour. How much meaningful evaluation can happen in under 12 minutes, if they even got that long to make their case ? Sounds like they go through several of those rubber-stamp thingys.

    • Sorry, this should have been posted on the other article. Not enough coffee yet for me. lol

  9. “Group dream” is like many projectors beaming out enough light enhanced images to create a more solid ‘hologram’ — waking or sleeping. When you master lucid dreaming when you are wide awake and can still function with clarity on the waking plane, share some hints.

  10. George, in most of my dreams I am in my late twenties or thirties (actually 64 in waking life), often on college campuses or in job situations. For the last 9 years I’ve been working part-time at a department store and retail settings have become common. If my daughter appears, she is usually a child (33 in “reality”) and my deceased parents, grandparents, and aunts and uncles frequently appear. I don’t recall any computers but I had a vivid dream of a landline phone call when I was in college in 1970-75. My dad used to travel to South America for Texaco in the ’70s and in the dream my mom was frantic that he had gone on a business trip them vanished. I woke with my dorm phone receiver in my hand!

  11. George

    Your dream sounds more of the post apocalyptic to me, as there are already predictions of Northern Germany sinking over night, due to earth core shifts. Maybe after the event technology for a short time is reduced to antiques. You getting separated from your group and then traveling east and the west, may indicate economic conditions and market reactions in the future. Either way you are an economic guy and your most internal questions may have been getting answered by the pictures you were seeing. The spirit world speaks in pictures, to them it is the most efficient way of speaking.

  12. George, I have been in IT for over 50 years and never have had a computer or PC appear in my dreams. But I have had dreams of a BlackBerry that would not work right to my frustration in those dreams.
    Is it the technical thinking part of the brain that is not connected to the sleeping dream brain or what?

    Good observation on your part. We need to dig deeper….Richard