Many people are experiencing more vivid, frequent, and stranger dreams during the corvid-19 pandemic. Or at least more people are waking up remembering their dreams. An internet search quickly reveals that many news outlets have run features in the past couple of weeks concerning dreams, and it does seem as though something different is indeed occurring. To my knowledge most of studies of dreams have resulted in theories, but very little is known definitely about dreams. We know that they most frequently occur during our deep REM sleep cycles, but why they occur or what their purpose really is remains in the realm of theories.
We do know that dreams have been occurring since the beginning of recorded history and humanity has always been mystified by their meanings. The first book of the Bible, Genesis, chapter 41, contains a fascinating story of the Egyptian pharaoh having a series of dreams and struggling to figure out what they mean. He finds a man named Joseph who had a reputation for interpreting dreams and was sitting in jail for a crime he did not commit. Joseph has always insisted that he does not interprets the dreams but just shares the meanings that God has assigned to the dreams. In the case of the Pharaoh’s dream, it was predicting 7 years of good harvest followed by 7 years of famine, and with Joseph’s guidance Egypt was able to withstand the famine.
I am certainly not a dream study expert, but I suspect our dreams have something to do with our minds sorting out all of the information that we are trying to absorb. I also think we are in a time in which we have a tremendous amount of information coming in. Given all of that, it makes sense that our dream activity may indeed be on the increase. If we remember that the Pharaoh’s dreams allowed the Egyptians to prepare for the world ahead of them, I am wondering how our dreams might help us prepare for our future. What cautions might they be trying to share with us? What amazing hints and hopes might our dreams be providing? There will be a day when we will be looking at this pandemic as a historical event in our past. At that time our world will be different than it was prior to these events. Do our dreams have the ability to grant us hope for what that different world might be like?
~ Rev. Nathan Athorp