Time travel and dreams

Lately I’ve been having a number of dreams and discussions about time travel. I’ve always been fascinated by the concept of time travel through TV shows and movies I watch, and the books I read. So while my son has dreams that are vivid but can’t be remembered and my wife has dreams about the real world and all issues that come with it, I dream about time and how to move through it.

My first dream earlier this week dealt with a friend of mine who had a way to manipulate time so that he could go back or send back people through time to collect artifacts. This dream could have been influenced by a number of Time Travel historian books that I’ve read. The Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog, both by Connie Willis or Pastwatch: The redemption of Christopher Columbus by Orson Scott Card. In my dream, I find myself back in time in the year 2002. I have discovered that there is a covert operation to retrieve some artifacts by a group of agents that were sent by their leader, Craig (who happens to be a physicist). I further discover when questioning these operatives that they have been there since 1998.  My dream then next goes onto trying to unravel the reasons for these thefts. It turns out that I was also sent back by Craig. My goal is to get back in time and stop Craig from doing whatever he is planning. This part however occurs when I begin to wake up, so it is never resolved.

In my semi-conscious state I begin to think about the impact of historical time travel. By taking items from history, do you not in fact change history?  I think about if I were to go back in history to learn more about historical events I would want to take a digital camera and recorder. That way I could get real images and sounds to represent the historical events, which shouldn’t change history.  Of course then I start to think about what would happen if I were caught with digital equipment back in time; How I could be accused of witchcraft (depending on the period of time I go back to.) Now I’m in a wakeful state and thinking philosophically.

Sharing these kinds of dreams with my family gets very strange looks. My son already thinks I’m weird with my dreams, because he can’t believe my dreams are so detailed and played out. My wife was never much into Science Fiction, so she has no interest in hearing about these dreams.

While driving my son to his summer program following that  dream I posed the question of where in time he would like to go if he could travel through it. This gets us on a big discussion of how one travels through time. His response was that he would travel “up”.  I thought you could only go forwards or backwards through time. He tried to explain to me about he physics of time and space and how you could actually go forward, backwards, up or down. When I tried to find an example to show him that I understood what he meant, which I’m not sure I did, I just continued to prove to him how ignorant I was and the conversation was changed.

My latest dream about time happened last night. In this one, I was back in time during World War II. I was writing a book to be published about my experiences in WWII. The interesting part of this dream was I had already published the book in my present day and somehow got transported back in time to WWII when I began recording all of the information that was in the book. I got transported back with the full knowledge of the book, it being published, and all of the events in my life up until the time I was sent back in time. It’s like becoming 18 again, but keeping all the knowledge and memories that you gained over the last 40 years. Wouldn’t that be nice?

Again as usual, I begin to wake up prior to the resolution of my dream and begin to think philosophically about the issues that the dream raised.  Unless I resolve the dream and return to my present time, I am trapped in an infinite loop. I experience the event, write the book, get it published, then go back in time to the experience.  When do I get to continue my life?  These are the things I am debating with myself as I wake up to start the day. As usual no one in my family is interested in the issues or experiences raised in my dream.

Time being what it is, I move on. I’m sure I will continue to have these types of dreams and internal debates about time and time travel. Maybe I’ll even write about it or tell about it some day. Or have I already done that?

About hdh

I have been telling stories for over 35 years. As a retired teacher, I hope to expand upon my repertoire and use this blog as a place to do writing. The main purpose is to give me and others that choose to comment, a space in which to play with issues that deal with storytelling, storytelling ideas, storytelling in education, reactions to events, etc. I will also explore some of my own writing, from character analysis to fictional and personal stories. Enjoy!
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7 Responses to Time travel and dreams

  1. Carol DW says:

    Interesting thoughts. As you know, I also like reading about traveling to different times. I haven’t had many dreams about it though. I used to think I would like to go back in time, but am not sure now. The implications of messing something up are great (I think.) I remember reading a short scifi story when I was younger (I may have told you about this already)about a “big game hunter” going back to the time of dinosaurs. The operators had previously identified an animal that was ready to die and offered the opportunity for the hunter to kill it. The hunter was told specifically to not go off the pathway as he pursued his prey so he wouldn’t kill anything else, which could change the timeline. Well, of course, he took a step off the path. In doing this, he stepped on a moth and killed it. He lied to the operators about his actions. It was only a moth, right? When he returned to his time he was appalled to see that that action has changed the language and some other things in his time. So, my favorite fantasy is having the ability to teleport. 🙂

  2. suzie_jean says:

    well i am 28 female, and i have been having time travel dreams my whole life. its always like 20 or so years prior to the current time. well back in like the early 80s it was like deja vu..i would dream of being in that time before i was in the time like..1960s..it was crazy. but it started to get deeper, because i would become aware of myself in the dream and ask…what year is this..to a person i was next to. recently, last year i had a dream that i was back in 1986..it seemed so real, but it was like deja vu…mind u…in that time i was only 5 yrs old. suddenly i now have weird experiences from each time era. i believe in reincarnation so i was like back in the 1800s…i was on a carriage horse and the dream was blk/white..i was some kind of prince or queen..it mustve been my past life. i researched carriage cars and that was the time era…that was a very profound dream to me. the next time was way back..and im even scared to say..i think it was during jesus times. the people wore robes. we were in egypt..they were dressed in white. the man said “this is the jewelry of christ”.. and he put a needle in my arm. in the background were brown horses. please give me feedback.


  3. hdh says:

    All I can say is that there is no accounting for dreams as far as I know. It’s just the mind using up its spare time to become creative. If you can take what you get and use it, for example become a writer, or find the inner you, then its a plus. If not, unless it’s a nightmare, enjoy the show. Though I do get frustrated at times when I wake up before things are resolved.

    Of course if your dreams become too wacky and obsessive, then maybe you should seek professional help. Is there such thing as a dreamologist?

  4. Laurie says:

    I also have dreams that I’m in different time periods. Usually the 1940s, or early 20th century, or late 19th century. Sometimes I’m in the future. I’ve been trying to find something on the internet addressing this and your blog is the first I’ve seen. I don’t know what it means but I don’t think it means these are past lives.

  5. This is a very intersting blog entry as I have frequently had dreams of time travel over the past decade. For some strange reason, I have had dreams that I return anywhere between 10 and 20 years to my past. The strange part is that I am aware that I have traveled back in time during these dreams and so are my family members. It’s as if they were expecting me. In one particular dream: the air, the smells, the images were so real, I could have sworn I was back in 1985 talking to my mother. I can’t explain it, but this is a strange phenomenon.

  6. Future Dreamer says:

    I have had dreams in which were like Deja Vu experience where I was in the past or in the future. I had a very calm day on Saturday and only studied the Bible. However last night I had a dream in which I was actually time traveling. What is so weird about the dream is that I slept all night which I normally wake at least once during the night. I was also very tired upon waking and the strangest part of all I must have traveled about 5 different places/times while dreaming of time travel and I actually met Grace Hopper a now deceases, renowned computer scientist. I have had some strange dreams but this one took the cake any insight would be helpful again I have not watched any sci-fi movies in recent months and this dream was out of the blue.

  7. Meryl says:

    I have never dreamed of time travel but I often wake up before my dreams are resolved and that drives me crazy. Sometimes, I’ll try to go back to sleep and get back into the dream, but that never seems to work.

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