Having spent 20 centuries taking the Gospels apart, examining every word for scraps of meaning, we now turn to what is missing. Did Jesus marry and father children?1 Was Jesus funny? Then, where was His mirth?2 Do we simply not “get” his jokes? Likewise, while we have a rich heritage of Old Testament spiritual heroes who took their dreams seriously, why are Jesus’ dreams not recorded within the Gospels?
Julian Jaynes had an interesting theory about early Man.3 He contended that brains of our ancestors lacked a corpus collosum, a bridge linking the two brain halves. He also suggested that our primitive relatives acted upon impulses directly from the unconscious without censor, much like schizophrenia. That would explain pre-Mosaic lawlessness and bizarre behaviors by prophets.
Later in time, Joseph, David and a sizable ilk of Godlike people were directly visited by God as they slept; i.e., in dreams. And, there were those gifted with the ability to understand dreams, like Nathan.
Psychoanalysts Freud and Jung dusted cobwebs off the value of dreams and their interpretation. Why? Because they listened to thousands of schizophrenics who acted out their dreams until the analysts began to find patterns in dreaming. They used these patterns to understand how their better-adjusted patients’ dreams endeavored to heal them. But, few Neo-Freudians and Neo-Jungians still take dream work as seriously as did their founding fathers. Perhaps dream work, like therapy is going out of fashion.4 While there are a few quantum mechanics who weave dreams into their paradigms5, dreams are scarcely mentioned.
If you ask people on the street about dreams; they might say, “Garbage in, garbage out”. If you ask, “who sends us dreams?”, they might reply, “The sandman, the universe, the psyche, brainwaves.” While a few of the more liberal Christians may credit the Holy Spirit for synchronicity and thoughts “from out of the blue”, even they hesitate to hypothesize who or what might be responsible for dreams or what is required of the dreamer in response
Projecting celibacy onto Jesus and emulating that presumed lifestyle resulted in repressed sexuality that festered and erupted in unhealthy papal affairs and pedophilia. Assuming that Jesus was an ascetic without hilarity has resulted in a spiritual environment devoid of animation and droning with stagnation. Freud maintained that an unanalyzed dream is like an unopened letter. Could it be that whenever we ignore our dreams, we sever the conduit between ourselves and God? If so, an unappreciated dream is like an un-prayed prayer.
1 Dan Brown The Da Vinci Code
2 G. K. Chesterton essay “Why I Am a Clown”
3 Julian Jaynes The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Brain
4 James Hillman We’ve Had 100 Years of Therapy; Why is the World Worse?
5 Fred Alan Wolfe The Dreaming Universe