I dream a lot at night, and I quite enjoy it. I recently realised that I also dream a lot during the day.
Imagine you can cut down the present moment to an infinitely small instant. The quantum of a Nano second. Not „now“, it’s already over. „Now now“, as they say here in Africa. With a blink of your eye, a million „nows“ have already passed.
We can assume that this „Now“ really exists. Let’s take that as a working hypothesis. Otherwise everything would be a dream.
I am sure I am not the only one: While dreaming, I have no doubt that it’s real. My brain is sending me all the signals of the woman I always wanted to meet or the boss I never wanted to meet. When I wake up, sometimes I am happy that elephant-sized mosquito did not bite me; sometimes I wish I had been that smart, rich, and beautiful guy. My brain realistically produced both things during sleep.
We acknowledge easily that a night dream is a brain fiction. We talk about it openly. Can you imagine? Last night I dreamed I was flying.
But the brain does also a good job in creating daydreams. We dream about all those times, an infinite sequence of quanta of nanoseconds. These moments are not the present. They are either in what we call the “past” or the “future”.
The “past” of our ever-so-important self-centred story is made of so-called “memories”, which are nothing else than what our brain keeps accessible in the present of our emotions of the past. The brain is just like a network server. I am currently installing one. It does its job, more or less. It keeps what I think is worth keeping.
Folder 1: “Health”. Sub-folders: “Bad health”, “Good health”, “Trash folder”.
Folder 2: “Career”. Sub-folders: “Success”, “Failure”, “Pension fund”.
Folder 3: “Relationships”. Sub-folders: “Success”, “Failure”, “It was complicated”, “The best sex I ever had”.
Folder 4: “Friends”. Sub-folders: “Best friends”, “good friends”, “loose friends”, “assholes”. A similar folder for “family” has recently been automatically merged because it contains the same sub-folders.
Folder 5: “Money”. Sub-folders: “When I had none”, “When I had some”, “The day I will have a lot” (the latter is also accessible from the Server “Future”.)
Folder 6: “Values”. Sub-folders: “Religion”, “New Age”, “Politics”, “Humanism”, “Why I am really better than others” (often read error No. –X50.394832.IM)
Folder 7: “Trips”. Sub-folders: “The good ones”, “The bad ones”, “Trips that were only espensive”.
Many other folders and sub-folders fit on what is still the most powerful server on Earth, the human brain. Based on what folders we had unconsciously told the Server to create and what algorithm we instructed it to use, the server is constantly feeding the dream of our past story. Me, for example, I recently “thought” about “That was the best job I ever had” and “The worst investment I ever made”, and about the “Idiot who knew nothing and insulted me”. It had nothing to do with reality, but all to do with the dream of my past story created by my Server-brain.
Just like for the past, the Server-brain does the same powerful job for the future. Folders and sub-folders exist such as “The 101 thing I want to do before I die”; “my perfect wife”, “What I will do with one million US Dollars”, “What I need to be happy”. While my dream story of the past is stored and processed, the dream story of my future is already in the making. I had a bad relationship in the past; therefore I will do this and this to have a better relationship in the future.
I don’t know if you have a computer server or a large hard disk. I do have both because I am an IT freak. I find that I have a lot of not very useful information on it. I don’t blame the computer because I unknowingly told it to do what it is doing, and I am unconsciously using the information it is providing me. To be honest, I was not quite sure what it is storing and providing, sometimes multiple times, but had I read the user’s manual, I would have known.
There is no user-manual for the Server-brain. What I learned empirically is that as powerful and maybe oversized the human brain-server is, it is not Me. It is a just a tool that me, my real Self, can use like other tools. Unfortunately, the brain-server is confronted with tens of thousands of individual impressions every day, ranging from a bad feeling to a picture on an advert. It’s an awful lot of information to summarize to the client.
The Server-brain is immediately feeding the Ego, the story of my Life, past and future. “I was a victim”, “I will be a hero”, “I am driving a bicycle not a Mercedes”: I am or do something that other’s don’t. There is some eternal justice feeling in the brain-fed Ego.
Here is the point.
It’s a dream.
The past, and the future. It’s fed by our brain-server, that we configured ourselves.
It is not recommended to switch off a server, because it is always synchronizing and transmitting. As for the brain-server, it is also not recommended, because our heart would stop beating.
But it is possible to go into the settings and stop being considering for real what is a dream.
I’ve got a thousand legally purchased movies on my Mac server. Sometimes when I watch a movie, just like in a dream, I confuse it with reality. That’s generally a good movie, because it creates a realistic dream.
But contrary of the dream of past and future stories of my life, I try to recognize it sooner or later as a dream.
It is possible to be in the Now and be Self, and recognize those Ego-stories of past and future, acknowledge for what they really are: Dreams.
It’s not a problem at all to have dreams. It’s just important to know when you dream.
I believe the key to happiness is to be able to do the same with our Server-brain: Recognize that it supplies Ego with dreams. We can wake up from those permanent day dreams just like we can wake up from night-dreams.
The only moment when you don’t dream is in the Now.
Now, in the present moment, in the quantum of a nano-second, what is really your problem? You are mourning about the loss of your mother; you are angry with your boss. But is it really a problem now? Now now? If you have toothache, you have to do something about it immediately. Go to the dentist. Just do it, as Nike says. Don’t make a story about it..
Because if you make a story out of it, it is likely to be one of those wrong dreams.