Dreams and Reality
Dreams and Reality
I was sitting in my philosophy class a few days ago. I just started college was pretty sleepy since I'd had back to back classes starting at 8 that morning and hadn't eaten since breakfast (about 5 hours ago). My roommates are also the type where getting to bed at 2:00am is early. Although I missed a large part of what was being discussed in the lecture since I was nodding in and out of sleep, I was able to follow the general discussion that was being held. I tried to contribute when I was a bit more awake, but the professor didn't call on me (likely because he'd seen me drifting in and out of sleep earlier).
Ironically, the discussion was about dreams, and whether or not we can know if our entire existence in the physical world is only that… a dream. You'd think I was participating very well by being half asleep lol.
So, I'm sitting in class. The students and professor were throwing around a lot of phrases like "how do we know this is real?" and "what if none of this is really happening?" "All could be just a dream" etc. You've probably heard this before.
I'm writing this to say why I think that thinking about it that way is illogical.
First off: How do we define reality?
I would say that reality is what our consciousness perceives. We have perceptions when awake, and perceptions when dreaming.
Currently, we face a conundrum when thinking about reality due to how we think about dreams. Basically, the majority of society (or at least, the society I know) would say that the experiences we have while asleep do not actually happen. They are, so to speak, just our imagination, and not worth lending credence to as a real experience.
So now we see the paradox that arises. Since we've labeled a part of our life's experience "not real", a part of our experience that feels completely real in the moment, we have reason to think anything could be, fake, not real, fantasy, etc. This has troubled philosophers and non-philosophers alike ever since it was first thought of.
But, in my humble opinion, this problem of reality is easily solvable. Dreams are real, and the material world is real. One does not detract meaning from the other. If we choose to disregard one of them as fantasy and impossible, then we must do the same for the other. But if we say that both are real, then we can get back to our lives and stop worrying about life being pointless.
I'm very curious to hear other people's thoughts on this issue, whether you agree with me or not.
"Let yourself be silently drawn by the strangle pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray."