SF (actual) dreams and nightmares

Parson

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I had this dream in my late twenties. I don't know if this was the way my mind telling me to grow up, to make peace with my species, the human civilisation or not to worry about things I can't change which are my sober interpretations so far but its effect is still as fresh as that night. It's like a little stab wound in my heart. I feel it sting when I remember this dream and think about it.
All I can say is that this was a wonderful gift and whether its from you subconscious or from somewhere outside of you; you are doing the right thing by cherishing it and living a productive life.
 

tegeus-Cromis

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There is one dream I had, not like any other, I'll never forget. It affected me very much, it changed me or I had it because I was changing. I can see where all my dreams and nightmares come from, but not this one. I think that was the most powerful one I had. It's a short, complete, very vivid dream. I need to tell it.

I'm walking in a forest, it's dark and warm. I'm carrying white jug (?) like things. There are fires lit around there is this flickering faint light around. It's so cosy, peaceful in the open forest at night. You know this feeling, you are out there with people somewhere, everybody is scattered around and you are all doing something together, collectively working. There is this feeling of full safety, comfort being a part of that. That's it. And I 'hear' people talking and walking. It was an amazing feeling. I don't see people, just figures. The voices are benevolent, soft. I don't understand any of it but 'get' what they are talking about.

Then I remember that I'm not on Earth. I'm on another planet and in a momentary panic, I try to remember. How long I have been here? (But not what is here, how did I get here.) And I think "I have been here for twenty years with Earth time...". Then I suddenly start sobbing because then it comes to me, I remember that Humanity has ended. Human civilisation is no more. I can't describe that feeling of loss, pain, and heartbreaking. The void tearing my heart. I'm crying right now writing this. And then I think to myself "All that destruction, wars, genocides what was it for... nothing ... now it ended." But then someone (?) touches my back (physically?) and says (?) 'It's OK. Don't worry.' I don't hear any voice, I just understand it. And I feel a very intense melancholia and then an incredible relief, peace. I feel/think like, "It's OK. It started, happened and ended." This happens in moments in the short dream. It feels like something very heavy was lifted from me. Then we arrive at an opening, there is an enormous tree. (It's a tree?) It's an irregular sphere-like shape. I remember its branches make small rooms like spaces in it with flickering lights. But I don't remember any detail. Nothing about the figures, that place. I woke up crying, I cried a lot but I was peaceful.

I had this dream in my late twenties. I don't know if this was the way my mind telling me to grow up, to make peace with my species, the human civilisation or not to worry about things I can't change which are my sober interpretations so far but its effect is still as fresh as that night. It's like a little stab wound in my heart. I feel it sting when I remember this dream and think about it.
This reminds me quite a lot of a dream that Dostoevsky wrote in at least three versions, and that he gave to three different characters (in Demons, A Raw Youth, and "The Dream of a Ridiculous Man").
 

tegeus-Cromis

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Two more: in college, I was a fine arts major. I mostly did graphic art in b&w and didn't trust my sense of color. Then one night, senior year (which I spent intensely, almost obsessively working on my senior thesis, a series of nearly monochrome landscapes), I had a dream of the most beautiful, brightly colored painting I'd ever seen. I can still see it in my memory, but if I tried to paint it it would be just a poor approximation of what I saw in my dream.

For a long time, I had many nightmares of buildings -- dilapidated mansions or institutional buildings, with a vague whiff of the post-apocalyptic about them, buildings that probably went on forever and in which I was forced to live, which were otherwise occupied by just a few others to whom I had little to say... It was as if we had been thrown together by chance, like refugees. But even saying this much is shading off into secondary elaboration. The dreams were mostly the buildings (often quite different from each other) and a feeling somewhere between unease and dread.
 

olive

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This reminds me quite a lot of a dream that Dostoevsky wrote in at least three versions, and that he gave to three different characters (in Demons, A Raw Youth, and "The Dream of a Ridiculous Man").
Really? I should read them then. I've only read Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment and Notes From Underground. And I was in high school, I guess. I know Demons by name but I don't remember others. I haven't read any Russian classic since ancient times. Thank you.
 

tegeus-Cromis

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Well, begin with "Dream." It's a short story. I should warn you that the narrative context in which the dream appears in Demons (in the chapter "At Tikhon's"--which was censored when the book was first published) is very, very disturbing.
 

olive

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Two more: in college, I was a fine arts major. I mostly did graphic art in b&w and didn't trust my sense of color. Then one night, senior year (which I spent intensely, almost obsessively working on my senior thesis, a series of nearly monochrome landscapes), I had a dream of the most beautiful, brightly colored painting I'd ever seen. I can still see it in my memory, but if I tried to paint it it would be just a poor approximation of what I saw in my dream.
20 years ago, I was writing some trivial kind of post-graduate thesis on Italian Renaissance sculpture. Hand details. I have no idea why but probably because it kept extended and I felt stressed, I kept running around in Disputa's upper part a few times. Why Disputa I have no idea. I don't even like Raffaello particularly. And it had nothing to do with the mural. In my dream, there were rooms behind the mural and some figures from Athen's School and some others I added (?) were there sitting at a table. Leonardo. I look at an old man and think it must be him. (?) I don't remember others now, I used to. What am I doing, chasing Michelangelo. LOL He keeps going in and out of rooms and I can never reach him. I can't even see his face. I clearly remember his painting like robes flowing, dark blue of course. Ha! I hear doors shutting. And it was like one of those dark movies which they can't manage the light and make a mess. It was stupid and agitating. That stupid text ate my 3 years for nothing, just to make my prof happy. It was ridiculous and meaningless as art history goes. And it was my idea to keep it easy. It sounds so funny now.

Studying Western art history, especially Biblical iconography returned me as a lot of silly, funny dreams. I have seen Jesus so many times in my dreams for example, I don't even know the count. Because I haven't seen any other character's image as many times as I have seen his. Moses just a few times and the last one was when translating The White Goddess. He was wearing the nine branched (?) deer horn, lol. Also, I saw Julius Caesar as Ciaran Hindus, lecturing me about general politics in his council robes with perfect British English on a wooden, big picnic table. And Freud as his old pic, in that horrid brown suit speaking English with a weird so-called German accent. Iyyyh. The last one was more of a nightmare.

Well, my highlights end here. That's all I remember about my dream life.
 

olive

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Well, begin with "Dream." It's a short story. I should warn you that the narrative context in which the dream appears in Demons (in the chapter "At Tikhon's"--which was censored when the book was first published) is very, very disturbing.
OK.
 

Dave

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My dreams must be very mediocre compared to these posts. As far as I can remember (and I think I would) I've never been able to fly, never met aliens, nor seen spaceships, nor travelled to alien planets. I've never seen the future. I wish I could. It isn't a lack of imagination. My dreams are more like that Rick and Morty episode when they were locked inside a room, but new members of their family kept appearing, who they just accepted, along with whatever lame back-story they came with. I usually see real people in my dreams or amalgams (never talking animals or androids) but they appear in impossible situations or impossible places, and I never question this ever. My dreams are sometimes re-runs of events that have happened, but with a different spin and outcomes, and with other people. A sort of Groundhog Day. This is why I've never written them down. I really don't think they'd sell. Also, some people could sue me for libel. Other times they are cheap knock-off versions of books read or films watched. They would have copyright infringement issues.
 

olive

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@tegeus-Cromis I've just read The Dream of a Ridiculous Man. I think I get why my dream reminded you of the story -the similar elements- but this is entirely different. He is describing an Eden like twin world and he reaches there by some sort of an 'awakening', some 'divine revelation', some knowledge he has that sets him apart from other people and then he corrupts, shapes that Eden like world. He is talking about knowing some sort of truth and preaching about it. It's dark and distressing.

In my dream, I'm like a little child who figures out that her home can vanish forever and her parents can die that these will happen so it happens in the dream. That it is life. There is no intellectual or divine revelation, some awakening in any part of my dream or what I feel about. I'm not at some better place but just some other place. I certainly have no effect on it. Whatever the beings are there, they are not superior per se. I'm not in some special position. My dream is a result of defence mechanism if you ask me. I'm a vulnerable person who can easily be affected by a lot of things. I've also been depressed at most of my adult life. I won't read the following ones. This was enough now, lol.

@Parson The art history department at my university was founded by the German scholars hence, the German tradition. It's a strict, heavy detailed one. And the history of art education was evolved as limited -still is I think- to the Western history of art in a strict sense. (Apart from the dominant culture.) That means you are bombarded with the visual information of thousands of depictions of characters from scripture, scenes from the Bible...etc. And following an outdated sort of style of education, you are expected to 'memorise' them. I've always had a problem with it, I didn't do well, most importantly I found it wrong and obsolete. Recognising an altarpiece from one panel or a cathedral form an obscure detail is not art history. That's not how should the history of art be taught. They could have cut that half and introduced different cultures we would've learned much more. So I've resisted this -without even knowing exactly why at that age- as a student and later when I was at the university. It was an issue for me. So the dreams were about filtering out that unnecessary excess from my mind for sure. For a short period in my life, my mind almost vomited these images. So nothing surprising or even a bit interesting about me seeing these characters, lol.

I agree with @Dave that dreams have nothing to do with imagination but just simply about filtering out the unwanted and making sense of with any excess good or bad. Considering we probably remember a very little portion of it -fortunately- it is a very good recycling and cleaning system.
 

Karn's Return

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Well, when I was a young lad, I had a dream that my one-time neighborhood came under attack from werewolves. It was a two-part dream, which was very odd...I had the second part the night after I had the first, and to this day I feel like there was meant to be a third but it never happened.


What happened in the dream was, my family, being at the end of the road, were the last ones still around. My brother, for whatever reason, was out rescuing small animals from the beasts while the rest of us defended the property. The cliffhanger ended with a werewolf managing to find its way through the back door-which to be perfectly honest, sucked horribly with what the home was. That part ended just as the beast was about pounce on one of us, but I never found out which of us was its intended victim.
 

Ray Zdybrow

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Not quite the same thing. But I would often go to bed on Saturday night disgruntled by one of the pieces of Sunday's sermon only to have a good answer for the problem the minute I woke up on Sunday. It was so common that I got to the point where I didn't worry much about a whole on Saturday night because I was pretty sure something would be available to me on Sunday I had not thought of before.
Then halfway through delivering the homily, you realised... you WEREN'T WEARING YOUR TROUSERS!? o_O
 

tinkerdan

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Ha, that reminds me...
I remember a dream where I went to the cinema in a big shopping centre with a friend. I fell asleep during the film
...I went to one of the Star Wars films at the theater with a friend and he fell asleep half way through or somewhere there about. I really don't know how long he was sleeping; however if he hadn't been snoring I might have let him sleep right through.

As to dreams, mine vary and sometimes I dream every night for weeks. I often have dreams that seem to follow a plot; however just as often I have ones that seem to repeat the same things over and over--often with different results. In fact that makes me think of that saying that insanity is doing the same thing over and over with the same unsatisfactory results. In my dreams it's more like doing the same thing over and over with consistently different yet negative results, that's driving me mad.
 

Parson

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Then halfway through delivering the homily, you realised... you WEREN'T WEARING YOUR TROUSERS!? o_O
No, that was never dreamed about, or (praise the Lord) never happened for real. I do know of a pastor who always wore waders when he baptised someone by immersion but one day he overfilled the baptismal tank and the water flowed over his waders as he and the one to be baptised stepped in. Water then over flowed his waders, and he had to take the off to get out of the tank. Revealing to the congregation that he had taken his trousers off so that they didn't get damp in the waders. Blessedly he did not go commando.
 

Astro Pen

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Somewhere around 1985 I had an abduction dream . Paralysed and carried down the stairs. Would have been 'one of those' had my partner not woken up and said that she had just had a nightmare about - being paralysed and carried down the stairs !
Makes you wonder....
 

Boneman

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As a young teenager, I had recurrent dreams of being chased by an almost unseen shape, that was obese. In order to get away I would jump in the air and take an enormous stride. When I landed, it was akin to being on a trampoline, and I'd spring higher with each step. Eventually, when I was 50 feet in the air, I'd stay there, and 'swim' my way to safety.

Over many years this nightmare progressed, so I just had to take one step, and I was 50 feet up, home free. Eventually, I just spread my arms and flew. And at that point, I never dreamed of a pursuer again... but I carried on flying. Any grassy slope appeared in my dream I'd just step off and go. I truly wish I could go wingsuiting, my dreams are so like that.

Now, I try and teach people in my dreams to fly, just telling them to step off and trust themselves. Never recognised anyone I'm teaching yet... I always wake with a deep sense of wonder and contentment.
 

Extollager

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t-C wrote, "This reminds me quite a lot of a dream that Dostoevsky wrote in at least three versions, and that he gave to three different characters (in Demons, A Raw Youth, and 'The Dream of a Ridiculous Man')." Not really on topic, but I wanted to say that Demons is, for me, an essential book.

As for the topic -- I've almost never had dreams that I remember that had a definite sf element. I dreamed many years ago of being at my grandparents' house in rural Grants Pass, Oregon, and looking out the window at a tyrannosaur walking around.
 

Ray Zdybrow

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I dreamt I was riding along a deserted road with Batman. The Batmobile stalled and I had to get out to hand-crank the motor. I was finding it difficult, I couldn't turn the crank fast enough to get the engine to catch, and Batman was standing there, arms folded tutting and sighing and making sarcastic comments. Then suddenly Superman flew down, wrapped his strong arms around me and carried me away into the sky... I had the dream not long after my father died.
 
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