Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Weird Dream

Last night I dreamed of hunting large, mythical creatures. A cross between a Wookie and a brachiosaur, these humongous, innocent animals had almost human facial features. I felt kind of twisted as I used a rifle to put a bullet into the hairy neck of one of these things.

Its serene, dopey smile quickly turned into a grimace as soon as I pulled the trigger. My rifle kicked back into my shoulder as a herd of them galumphed towards me, across an open national park of grassland. The targeted creature stumbled, but managed a few paces before slumping onto his chest. Its neck and face landed, like a disjointed tidal wave, with a ground-shaking thud.

Later, I watched more of them plod past in a herd from a wooden observatory tower. It was like the contents of another world had been picked up and dropped into a French zoo. The whole experience of being there was exhilarating, but I was keeping the guilt at bay somehow… It felt fairly normal to be in such close proximity to such an alien creature, as if humankind would inevitably find another species at some point- either on this world or another.

In reality, I don’t think I could kill any creature bigger than a wasp. Especially not a giant, dopey dream-induced incarnation like I, for some reason, visualised. Then why was I dreaming it? Are dreams just a mashed reflection of what our conscious minds concoct? Or are they, as some people believe, signs for some deeper meaning that we can analyse and interpret?

A quick browse online has not proved useful- although it seems I’m not the only one to have killing dreams. It’s a frequent occurrence, according to various “dream diagnosis” websites. Unfortunately these websites do what a lot of online advice sites do- they try to condense a broad and varied subject into a few words and spill out insincere advice from unconfirmed sources, with no solid, confirmed interpretations. Good old Wikipedia has some believable suggestions.

“Jung suggested that dreams may compensate for one-sided attitudes held in waking consciousness.”

I dunno, Jung. I suppose you could think of it one sided that I wouldn’t pick up a gun and shoot an animal. Or a humongous, surreal alien.

“Dreams create new ideas through the generation of random thought mutations.”

Whatever the hell that thing was, it was definitely a mutant. Now we’re talking.

“Sigmund Freud first argued that the foundation of all dream content is wish-fulfilment”.

Touchy, Freud. Very. Given that most dream websites agree that the majority of dreams we have are bad, “wish fulfilment” doesn’t seem to apply. Although when you have a dream about killing, the associated emotions are not always negative. In various online forums, people (including me) admit to enjoying the dream-based kill.

Well. That’s the hard part over. If you haven’t thrown your monitor out of the window in fear and vowed never to come back to this website again, stick with me here.

Mimi.hu, a very bizarre cluster of unconfirmed fragments of knowledge, is no Wikipedia. However its index system pointed me to some interesting suggestions:

“Killing or wanting to kill often represents a desire for power or control”.

From this I found mydreamvisions.com, who propose that dreams of hunting “for wildlife” can represent “An attempt to feel more powerful by dominating less powerful beings, based on feelings of powerlessness or self-hatred”.

It’s just a dream, people. I’m not going to set up shop on Oldham’s Spindles Shopping Centre roof and start picking off cretinous individuals who smash each other’s faces in at two o’clock in the morning.

Although, that would solve a lot of the town’s problems. We’ll have to wait for the government to get that far, though.

I’m straying- I had a point to make here, dammit!

My theory on this dream relates to anthropology- the study of cavemen. I have been fascinated by this subject since- a long time ago- I asked ask.com, “how do I attract women?” Yes, it was a desperate moment. But it had to be done. Most of the advice I found was surprisingly valid and helpful- In particular, the dating guru David DeAngelo provided endless material involving realistic scenarios and backed up with facts.

The material on this site that really hit home for me- that provided the proverbial light bulb over my head- was the connection between what women find attractive in men now, to what cavewomen needed from their Palaeolithic men in order to survive and to raise children. Ten thousand years ago, if a man couldn’t provide food and shelter for a woman, he might as well go and crack one off. If he couldn’t beat a 200kg Sabre-tooth tiger to death with a modified tree branch, what use was he? The chances of any women trying it on with him were slim to none.

The age-old question- what do women want? Is answered by our caveman friend. They want the three P’s- Provision and Protection. And you know what the third one is. However, this is not the only topic of discussion that can be explained through the context of anthropology. I am convinced the available knowledge of our prehistoric ancestors can inform us on any part of contemporary life.

If I dream of bloodlust and killing immense creatures, perhaps a desire to go out, hunt, kill and return with a bounty is an emotion instilled from thousands of generations ago. Is it the desire to provide? I am a man, after all. As it stands the money I make from my job isn’t enough to allow me to live independently. I can’t even provide for myself… This exemplifies the theory that, in dreams, we act out desires and impulses that the real world does not allow us to do. Dreaming allows the mind to use its many skills, without the implications of reality.

It is healthy.

So maybe mydreamvisions.com is right… Maybe I do have a lust for power. And as long as I only dream of killing, I won’t end up in a padded cell in the bowels of Strangeways Prison, rocking back and forth singing “Jimmy Cracked Corn” to myself.

“If you dream that you hunt game and find it, you will overcome obstacles and gain your desires.”

Again, arbitrary. But if it’s true, I like it. By this rationale, I could get published, paid and laid in the very near future… Ho ho.

So from waking up wondering if murdering innocent aliens could warrant my incarceration, I am now secure in the partly confirmed knowledge that I am actually a pretty regular dreamer, like the rest of us. The Internet may provide many answers to allsorts of questions- but in order to understand the dreams, you’ve got to have the dreams first. Goodnight.