During my freshman year of college, I took a class called “Art and the Dream Life,” and one of the many pieces we read was Freud’s Interpretation of Dreams. In the book, Freud says that a dream is a wish fulfillment. This was probably Freud’s biggest mistake. He pushed this idea until he just could not prove it, and it seemed absurd.
When I took the class in college, my roommate would wake up every morning and have me interpret her dreams, assuming that everything in the dream is symbolic of something else, some societal stereotyped symbol. Let me tell you, her dreams; that was some messed up shit. Her dreams constantly questioned her relationships with others.
I’ve been having some odd dreams lately. The other night I dreamed that I was on Skype with someone from school, and that suddenly he started snapping his fingers at me. I said several times that he had my attention, no need to keep snapping, but it was incessant. He wouldn’t stop. Then, I woke up to my sister snapping her fingers.
I’ve also had dreams about constructing elaborate buildings that fall down when I make the final touch and going on goose chases for keys to open doors, then waking up before the final clue. Those seem like fairly blatant and easy to interpret dreams. For example, I’ve been working on something that might fail when I think I’ve done a good job, or that I’m trying to open doors for myself in life or in my career that I just don’t understand yet, I just don’t the key to open those doors.
In any case, I think we shouldn’t put too much thought into dreams. I don’t think those dreams are so much wishes as they are fears. If we allow ourselves to believe that maybe a dream is an indicator of something that may happen, then it’s more likely to occur.
Our worst mistake is therefore Freud’s pitfall, we want to believe wholeheartedly that it means something definite, and it doesn’t have to. It’s just a dream.