Public Talk 21st December, 1947 | Madras, India
Question: I dream a great deal. Have dreams any significance?
So, the problem is then, how to transcend, how to understand fully, deeply, all the intimations of the various layers of consciousness so that you don't have to wait for the night to have a dream and then translate it and all the rest of it. Is it possible to understand the whole content of consciousness, to free it so that it need not project itself upon the superficial mind when asleep? Is it possible to empty the whole of consciousness so that the conscious mind understands fully? The superficial then is the profound. There are many layers of consciousness and when one of these layers projects upon the conscious, superficial layer, its intimations, which the conscious mind calls dreams, then the conscious mind tries to interpret them and suffers all the anxiety of interpretation. I do not know if you have gone through that.
Now, my question is: is it possible for the conscious mind to be so alert, so passively aware during the day that all the intimations are translated as they arise? In other words, can you be so consciously, so choicelessly aware - the moment you choose, you become the interpreter - can you be so passively aware that all the layers of consciousness are giving you their intimations all the time, so that all of consciousness is one whole without layers? This is possible only when the conscious mind is not battling with problems, when the conscious mind is not made still, but is still. If you will experiment you will see how extraordinarily interesting this is. When the conscious mind is quiet it may be doing superficial things but its quietness is not disturbed by the superficial activities. Then you will see that the more you are aware, the more you are passively observant, negatively watchful, choicelessly alert, the more the contents of the unconscious, of the many layers, comes to the surface. You don't have to interpret them because the moment they arise they are being understood. If you experiment, you will feel an extraordinary freedom because your whole being, your consciousness, which now is broken up, becomes integrated. There is no longer any struggle in your consciousness, it is therefore love, it is completely whole, unbroken. Surely, that is freedom, and all those deep hidden layers of consciousness are out, open, free and therefore there is no necessity for dreams.
When therefore there are no dreams, consciousness can penetrate deeper and deeper into itself, for dreams are an indication of disturbance. But when there is no disturbance and the body is very quiet during sleep, when the mind is still, when the conscious mind is comparatively still, you will find upon waking, you had not dreamt, but that a renewal has taken place, a renewal which is constantly going on because there is always an ending.