The Difference Between Meditation Visions and Dreams
In this post we look at the subtle differences between meditation visions and dreams
They're Similar But Also Quite Different
There are many similarities between meditation visions and dreams. Both involve altered states of consciousness, both can be very vivid and both can be meaningful. However, there are also some important differences.
For example, dreams tend to be more random and less controllable than meditation visions (leaving aside the idea of lucid dreaming for now). Dreams are also usually shorter and less detailed than visions. And, while it is possible to have a negative dream, it is very rare to have a negative meditation vision.
Additionally, dreams usually happen during the REM (rapid eye movement) stage of sleep, while visions can occur during any stage of meditation.
Visions are also generally more controlled and meaningful than dreams; they often arise in response to specific questions or intentions that the meditator sets before beginning their session. Finally, while anyone can have dreams, visions are more likely to occur in experienced meditators who have developed a strong practice.
What is a Mediation Vision?
A meditation vision is a specific type of mental focus that is used during meditation in order to help achieve a particular goal. This can be anything from gaining clarity on a personal issue to connecting with a higher power.
The ability to see and focus on a mental image during meditation can be incredibly helpful in keeping the mind from wandering, as well as providing a specific goal to work towards. In order to create a meditation vision, it is important to first quieten the mind and body as much as possible. It’s important to also ensure you undertake your meditation in a quiet and safe place.
Once you have achieved a state of relaxation, begin to focus on your breath and allow yourself to drift into a meditative state. Once you have achieved a deep level of relaxation, you can begin to focus on a specific mental image. It is important to keep this image as clear and simple as possible, as too much detail can be distracting. Once you have a clear image in mind, focus on it as much as possible and allow yourself to be pulled into it.
The more you focus on your meditation vision, the more likely you are to achieve it.
A meditation vision is a powerful, personal tool that can help to focus and direct your meditation practice. By creating and visualizing a clear and positive image of what you hope to achieve through meditation, you can more easily maintain your focus and achieve a deeper level of relaxation.
There are no hard and fast rules for creating a meditation vision, but it is important to choose an image or concept that is positive and inspiring. It can be helpful to select an image that represents your highest aspirations, or something that makes you feel calm and peaceful.
Some people find it helpful to visualise a particular scene or place that is significant to them, while others prefer to imagine a more general feeling or state of being. It is also important to ensure that your vision is something you can realistically achieve, so that you don’t set yourself up for disappointment.
Once you have settled on a vision for your meditation, it can be helpful to spend some time each day focusing on it. You may want to close your eyes and spend a few minutes picturing your vision in as much detail as possible. Alternatively, you could create a physical representation of your vision, such as a collage or painting, to help you focus on it during your meditation.
A meditation vision can be a powerful tool to help you focus your practice and achieve a deeper level of relaxation. By choosing a positive and inspiring image or concept, and spending time each day focusing on it, you can more easily maintain your focus and achieve your goals, or find the answers to something you’ve been looking for.
What is a Dream?
A dream is a succession of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations that usually occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not fully understood, although they have been a topic of scientific speculation, philosophical and religious interest throughout recorded history. The scientific study of dreams is called oneirology.
Dreams mainly occur in the rapid-eye movement (REM) stage of sleep—when brain activity is high and resembles that of being awake. REM sleep is revealed by periodic changes in eye movement and muscle tone. At other times, dreams may occur during non-REM sleep.
On average, people have about four to six dreams per night. The length of a dream can vary; they may last for a few seconds, or approximately 20–30 minutes. People are more likely to remember the dreams if they are awakened during the REM phase.
The function of dreams is not fully understood. Although dreams have been considered as a means of communication with the supernatural or the divine, they are more often seen as psychological expressions. Sigmund Freud proposed that dreams are a manifestation of the repressed wishes and emotions of the unconscious mind. He believed that dreams could be understood by analyzing their content.
Jungian analysts believe that dreams are a way for the unconscious to communicate with the conscious mind, and that they can be understood by looking at the symbols that appear in them. Other theories suggest that dreams are a way for the brain to process information and sort memories.
Most people dream in color, although some people report dreaming in black and white. Dreams are often vivid, but they can also be vague and unclear. Dreams can sometimes be frightening or disturbing.
Some people have recurrent dreams, which can be a sign of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a condition that can develop after a person experiences a traumatic event. recurrent dreams may include images or themes from the event. These dreams can be extremely disturbing for the dreamer and professional help may be required to help overcome them.
People have also reported dreaming about future events, such as the September 11th attacks and the coronavirus pandemic. It is not clear if these dreams are actually prophetic, or if they are just the result of a highly active imagination, coupled with simple chance.
Dreams have been a source of inspiration for artists, writers, musicians and even scientists throughout history. Some of the most famous works of art, literature, and music were inspired by dreams.
The interpretation of dreams is a complex and often subjective process. There are a variety of methods that can be used to interpret the meaning of dreams. These include traditional methods, such as dream dictionaries, and more modern approaches, such as Jungian analysis.
No single interpretation of a dream is universally agreed upon. The meaning of a dream may be different for each person who experiences it. Sometimes we can work out the meaning of a dream on our own by looking at the context around us. At other times we can reach out to a site such as this, whereby we investigate and talk about the more common interpretations of certain dreams. And finally, if neither of these work we can reach out to specialist dream interpreters – one is available by using the small chat head at the bottom of the screen on this site too.
In this post we’ve noted that there is a big difference between meditation visions and dreams, with meditation visions being more of a deliberate choice of what to see whereas dreams occur spontaneously while sleeping. Meditation visions are often easier to control that dreams – partially because when you are meditating you are still awake and in control of your conscious mind.
Both meditation visions and dreams can be used to obtain wisdom or knowledge of things that have been puzzling you, though meditation visions are likely to be more successful at this if you’re well practised.
Meditation visions are often more easily remembered, again because you’re in better control of your conscious mind at the time. Upon waking from a dream we’re often groggy from the deep sleep and soon begin to forget the dream. A good dream journal notebook can help you remember your dreams as you can write them down as soon as you wake. We have some here.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this brief look at the difference between meditation visions and dreams. If you have, please feel free to share it with your friends using the buttons below. If you have any questions or feedback, please leave us a comment using the form below. And if you’re struggling with the interpretation of one (or more) of your dreams, consider asking a specialist dream interpreter by clicking the popup chat icon at the bottom of the page.
Thanks for reading!