Do You Build Castles In The Air?
What is the value of our dreams?
” If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them. ” — Henry David Thoreau
Building castles in the air means entertaining daydreams that will never come to pass. Building castles in the air usually involves grandiose plans that are nearly impossible for the dreamer to achieve. Such plans are considered flights of fancy, charming and idealized versions of an imaginary life that the dreamer lives.
Psychologists no longer dismiss our dreams as random neuron firings or meaningless fantasies. Dreams are now considered an ongoing thought process that happens to occur while we are asleep.
Thank God for dreamers! Without their flights of fancy, the world might not have ever experienced the wonders that we now take for granted.
Dreams of creatives
Because of dreamers, we can read beautiful stories, all based on the wonderful workings of the author's mind and given life on the pages of their books.
Stephen King has written many fascinating stories, so much so that you wonder about his dreams. Carrie, The Dark Tower, Bag of Bones, The Dead Zone, Doctor Sleep, Firestarter, The Green Mile, Misery, The Shining, The Tommyknockers. Stephen King might be considered creepy based on his writings, but yet we can’t stop reading. He is a talented author, and without his dreams, his writing would not be as exciting, thought-provoking, or spine-tingling.
Mary Shelley had a vivid dream, or as she referred to it, a vivid waking dream. From that dream, she wrote Frankenstein.
J. K. Rowling, who gave us the Harry Potter series. A child full of dreams who wrote her first book at the age of six, Rabbit.
So many other dreamers and storytellers, such as Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Jame Joyce, Vladimir Nabokov, Fyodor Dostoevsky, William Faulkner, Charles Dickens, Anton Chekhov, Gustave Flaubert, and Jane Austen.
There is also the beauty and inspiration of music. In 1965, Paul McCarthy composed the song, Yesterday, which came to him in a dream. When he woke, the melody of the song was fully formed, and he quickly played the song on his piano. He was worried because he created the song in a dream. He thought he may have been replicating someone else's work, which he had previously heard. Only after McCarthy was sure the melody was his own did McCarthy and Lennon write the lyrics to the melody and published the song.
Dreams of Scientists, Inventors, Mathematicians, and Activists
Dreams do not come to life just in the written word and music; we also have inventions and theories and dreams of a better life.
How about Math? Who would ever think that mathematical theory would be formed in dreams? Srinivasa Ramanujan, a mathematical genius, said that the insight for his work came to him in his dreams. You can read his life story in Robert Kanigel’s The Man Who Knew Infinity: A Life of the Genius Ramanujan.
Albert Einstein had extraordinary scientific achievement, the discovery of the principle of relativity, after having a vivid dream. The dreams of Einstein were written about by Alan Lightman in the book Einstein’s Dreams. I am adding this book to my reading list, who would not want to read about his fantastic dreams.
There are other dreamers. Niels Bohr, whose dreams lead him to the discovery of the Atom or Elias Howe, who invented the sewing machine in 1845, and whose dreams led him to the correct placement of the needle eye of the machine.
Martin Luther King Jr.s, I Have A Dream, speech is how most of us recognize, remember, and honor him. An honorable man whose dreams changed us changed the way we think and made us better for it.
There are so many astounding dreams from many people with outstanding results that have benefited all of us.
Dreams, daydreams, and even nightmares.
There has been much research done regarding the role of our dreams. Dreams are used as part of therapy and confronting emotional issues.
There is an area of the brain active during dreaming called the amygdala, which is associated with our survival instinct. Scientists believe that our dreams help us prepare to deal with a threat and refer to it as fight-or-flight training.
The purpose of our dreams is also considered a way to store important information and memories.
The theory I like the most, and which I believe relates to the dreams of everyone mentioned in this article, is that our dreams are our muse. All of these people used their dreams to aid their creative abilities.
All of the above theories appear logical, and I feel they all have value.
Our dreams have value.
Dreams allow us all to imagine and to think creatively about the possibility.
“A dream is the seed of possibility planted in the soul of a human being, which calls him to pursue a unique path to the realization of his purpose.” — Sharon Hull
Dreams fill us with hope, and they provide us with the possibility of change. Dreams lead us to a better version of ourselves and the world around us. They come in all sizes, big and small, and they all have value.
It is easy to think that we cannot fulfill our dreams and believe we cannot achieve them, and we allow ourselves to settle for what is normal or accepted — what a shame.
We allow ourselves to be discouraged by other people's opinions and by past disappointments. We are afraid of failure.
Many people may not believe they can achieve their dream because they have no confidence in their abilities. They also want to be accepted by other people and may feel isolated from others because they are considered a “dreamer.”
What is required to achieve your dream?
“When you have a dream that you can’t let go of, trust your instincts, and pursue it. But remember: Real dreams take work, They take patience, and sometimes they require you to dig down very deep. Be sure you’re willing to do that.”
What does it take to follow your dream?
Do you have a clear understanding of your dream? Have you clarified it in your mind?
You have to feel passionate about your dream. Your passion will be the catalyst for believing the possibility of your dream.
Confidence in your ability and confidence of the people around you, your family and your team.
Can you recognize and accept the cost of fulfilling your dream? There will be a monetary cost and, quite likely, an emotional and physical cost. Do you have the financial means? Are you emotionally and physically healthy?
Do you have a feasible plan and strategy for how to achieve your dream?
Have you included other people in your dream? Do you have a support system? Is it feasible to complete your dream without the help of others?
Who does your dream benefit? Do you feel satisfaction from working on your dream? Will it provide a better life, and will it make you happy? Will it provide a benefit for others?
“Dreams are renewable. No matter what our age or condition, there are still untapped possibilities within us and new beauty waiting to be born.”
I believe in dreams. I feel they benefit all of us. Dreams give us the ability to feel joy and wonder. Dreams are necessary for us to produce innovative breakthroughs, write books that inspire us, and nurture our well being.
Dreams create happiness, allow us to be confident, have more satisfaction, and more energy. Dreams encourage us to want more from life and to provide more for others.
Dreams can take you on flights of fancy where you feel like a child full of wonder, warmth, and laughter.
Dreams paint a picture, a new idea, show us a path, and show us how to be brave, confident, and push us down that path to greatness.
There is magic in life. It is all around us, and our dreams fuel that magic. Dreams are our essence, our magic and they make our lives worthwhile.
Close your eyes, sigh, and let yourself float away into your dreams. You never know where they will take you.
“Dreams are illustrations… from the book your soul is writing about you.”
Follow the path to your dreams.
About the author
Writing about the things that interest or intrigue me, what I love and what stirs my emotions.
You can find me on Instagram, Pinterest, and Medium with more to follow as I start a blog and expand my horizons.