“One of the most adventurous things left us is to go to bed. For no one can lay a hand on our dreams.” - E.V. Lucas
It’s a good season to incubate a dream. Yay for spring and new life! The hills are still carpeted in green, the multi-colored wildflowers are waving hello in Northern California, and the days are warm and just right. Swim season has begun and outside in the fresh air, marvelous things are growing. Inside you new growth is forming, too.
Try indulging in a peaceful moment before you go to sleep…slowly breathe in and out…and set your dream intention for the night. You can simply ask for a dream you can remember. Or you can be specific. Would you like to fly tonight? Or find a solution to a challenge? Do something adventurous? Maybe have a healing dream that helps you wake refreshed and vital? Or travel to someplace marvelous? Or have a visit with a guide or someone you love? Dream incubation often works. We can ask for a special dream and sometimes they actually appear that night. Sometimes they show up later, with patience and perseverance and a continued nightly focus on what you desire. Write your dream incubation in your journal and be ready to receive a dream. It’s always interesting to look at the dreams you have after setting an intention for the night.
I was surprised two nights ago to find I had incubated a dream without realizing it. Thursday night we talked about visitation dreams during the university course I’m teaching this semester. A visitation dream has the appearance of a departed loved one, or an ancestor, or a guide of some kind, and are typically felt to be inspiring and spiritual. We watched a deeply moving Tedx talk by Dr. Christopher Kerr on dreams and visions of the dying. He speaks of his experience working in hospice where he witnesses the sacred passing of individuals at the end of life, and has been inspired by the peace and comfort that is possible at this initiatory time when a departed loved one appears.
That night I saw my friend Dana in a dream. We were dining at a large round table with friends, and he was talking in his oh-so-Dana way, giving advice, and laughing his Dana laugh. I woke so happy to feel something of his presence and to remember him again. I was delighted that I had a visitation dream, which are such special dreams, apparently incubated without effort after the discussion we had in class.
The idea of dream incubation is thousands of years old, practiced by multiple ancient cultures, and it still works. You can experiment with this any night you wish, and you may even find you have a dream come true.