Ys

Seer of ghosts & weaver of stories

(You are very much not forgotten)

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You learn something new every day - but I'm not usually this gobsmacked when I do!
Tea in blue
ajodasso
Is it true that we're not supposed to be able to read in our dreams? I'm astonished to discover this, because I've been able to read text in my dreams - wherever it may appear - since I first learned to read. In fact, I have an odd category of dream that consists of nothing but text, whether it's a constantly scrolling block of text or one paragraph after another or whatever; it just keeps coming. Sometimes it'll be one of my favorite books, and sometimes it'll be a story I've been working on (either a part already written or a new part starting to "type" itself out - yeah, sort of freaky).

This reminds me of the time when my mother's mother asked me, "Adrienne, do you ever dream in color?"

"All the time," I said. "I don't know what it's like to dream in black and white."

"Well, I've never dreamed in color," she replied. "Ever."

Do you read in your dreams? I'm curious about what other aberrations and variations exist!

I've never even heard that you aren't supposed to be able to read in your dreams. In any case, I can do it too. \o/

As for the color issue, I usually dream in color. I've only had a handful of dreams in black and white.

Funny thing, the subconscious. And it would seem there are as many different variants thereon as there are fish in the sea. I've met very few people in my life who occasionally have dreams in black and white, and only one who dreams only in black and white (my maternal grandmother, obviously).

undersea Expand
ajodasso Expand
You might find this article interesting--it summarizes some recent research that indicates early exposure to media influences dreaming habits; apparently, adults exposed to monochrome television as children see dreams in black and white.

If my grandmother's first media exposure was black and white television in her youth - which I'm pretty sure it was - then that probably explains why she dreams in black and white.

belu Expand
I don't remember most of my dreams, but I can read in them and I've had more than one which was... narrated? Only dream!me knew I was actually reading it.

Also apparently most people don't have music in their dreams at all, but I do - mostly in the dream itself as opposed to soundtrack, though.

I often have music in passing, too - not a soundtrack, as you say, but if music is incidental to the situation, just there for some reason, then it's perfectly coherent. I've never had narration, though!

Wow, I just watched the BTAS where Bruce knows he's dreaming because he can't read the text in the newspapers, or his books :D

To me it's certainly true. I remember having tried to find out where I was, but I could never read signs. I've tried making phone calls, but can never hit the right buttons. It's often when I dream of going on long train rides, that I need to see where I am, and the last time I dreamed this I spent most of it trying to read the signs on the station, or the map in the train. I was trying to run out and buy a ticket, because I had none, but I couldn't punch in the right station. It seems that letters and numbers are obscure to me in dreams.

I often, however, speak different languages. English and German oftenmost, or I'm addressed in these languages. Weird!

Wow, intriguing! As for foreign languages, the only one that ever occurs in my dreams is French - but then, I studied it for seven years and continued to use it periodically after university, so that's a perfectly logical extension. I never dream of speaking languages I don't know, and when people in my dreams speak languages other than English and French? I can't understand them, just as it is when I'm awake.

What? That can't be true! I also have dreams that consist of only reading - pages and pages of something. I once had an incredibly boring one where I swear I spent all night dreaming about reading my car's manual!

I also only dream in colour - wonder if the two are related somehow?

Who knows! And as for reading your car's manual, OMG - that's kind of funny :)

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The color levels in my dreams are very true-to-life. I would say that my dreams operate by all the laws of the waking world, except for the occasional dream in which I can fly, which is not true-to-life at all.

I know I can read in my dreams, because I've had dreams about reading books, or (surprisingly often) livejournal. Though I'd never heard of anyone having text-only dreams before!

I usually dream in color, though I do remember one dream in black and white: it involved Robert Duvall chasing me through a haunted house, while dressed like a priest and brandishing a human skull. It sounds funny but was actually terrifying. (Also, I find it interesting that when famous people appear in my dreams, as they do somewhat often, they are usually malevolent. Unless they are historical figures, who are a bit nicer generally.)

Dude, I never dream about famous people! I can also count the number of times I've had dreams of a sexual nature on one hand (the answer is only three or four, and I am never having sex - I'm always watching an intimate situation occur between two others; in fact, they never know I'm there at all because I'm the proverbial fly on the wall, omniscient, incorporeal). I don't suffer the usual form-letter anxiety dreams, either - first day of school and can't find locker, naked in public, etc. I have no clue what those are like, but everyone else in my family has had them!

I dream in color and about 90% of them are lucid, but I don't remember trying to read anything in them. Huh, shall have to pay attention to that next time.

I'd say I know I'm dreaming maybe about a third of the time - the funniest instance being a situation in which I had a piece of paper with a phone number on it to give to the person I was talking to in the dream, and I said, "But I can't give it to you - it's over there on my dresser, but I can't go get it because I'm asleep. Dammit!"

(Deleted comment)
I once read a chapter from a novel that I'm pretty sure doesn't exist - except in Dream's library, of course. And now I can't really remember what it was about. I really hate when that happens!

I dream in color and black and white. Many times I will dream in color and remember the images in black and white later, but know the dream was in color. (if that makes any sense)

I can read in dreams...but many times it won't make sense.

I dream about work a lot.

I never dream about work, and I never dream about school (and when I say school, I mean classes I had to attend, which are well behind me now - high school and undergrad university). I remember dreams in color, but what's stronger even than the visual memory is the physical sensations - things I touched, smelled, heard, etc.

I read in my dreams. Sometimes I wake and think how great the writing was and try to remember it. Of course, I've never been able to reproduce it.

When a story I'm working on plots itself out in text in my head as I'm sleeping, I can usually remember the gist and feel of it for later. I know I never reproduce the text verbatim, but certain phrases that leave a strong impression do survive into my waking hours (and subsequently the draft/final stages).

Hmm, I never thought about not being able to read in my dreams, since I certainly can. I also dream about writing, or reading things that my dream-self has written. One of my recurring dreams is about a library! I also dream in color, and sometimes in French, although usually when I dream in French I'm the one speaking it, not the people who are speaking to me.

In my dreams that feature French, it's usually everyone speaking it. And I find that my inhibitions go down; it's as if speaking French in my dreams these days is easier than speaking it IRL. Because I've had so many years with a lack of regular verbal practice, I get a little bit insecure when I have to say more than, say, a small handful of sentences strung together. I also find it easier when I'm drunk.

Edited at 2008-10-28 12:17 am (UTC)

I had more lucid dreams as a young child than I do now; I'd say only a third of my dreams these days are lucid. I also had fewer nightmares as a child than I do now!

i often fall asleep while reading books for classes and dream tormentedly that i am in fact reading the books which i ought to be reading, and the pages flash before my guilty dreaming eyes in vivid detail although usually the subject matter is somehow bizarrely altered...i think this may say more about my academic neuroses than the possibilities of dream reading...

I usually can't read in my dreams. I can add and subtract, though.

I do dream in color--even though I did watch black and white TV as a child.

and addendum (reading above): we DID have a black and white tv when I was a child (I'm a '70s baby), and that was the only period of my life when I dreamt in black and white.

Edited at 2008-10-28 12:36 am (UTC)

I usually don't notice if my dreams are color or B&W except for times where color was of importance for some reason. But I do know that at least some of my dreams have been in color.

I've dreamt that I've read (though usually short things like signs), sung songs I didn't know and written stories or poetry I couldn't remember on waking.

I dream and realize that I am dreaming, and think I have woken up, but am still dreaming. :-)

That is pretty much the most fascinating thing I've ever heard!

Especially because I, too, have been able to read in my dreams, whenever the text's there to be read, since I could read - one dream consisted of nothing but be in a comfortable chair, sitting beside a roaring fire in the middle of winter, reading Peter Pan and Wendy.

I dream in colour. I hear music. Sometimes, I dream and it's like a noir film. I can have perfectly coherent conversations with people outside my sleep without ever waking up, and not remember them when I do.

I've actually been told that, if you hear music in your dreams, you should try to write it down when you wake up, because that'll be your masterpiece.

[Edit]: Having said that, I've never watched a black & white TV, but I've watched black & white movies on a COLOUR TV. ^_^

Edited at 2008-10-28 12:49 am (UTC)

I dream in colour, read text in my dreams, have died numerous times in dreams and lucid dream all the time. I also taste and smell in dreams. Not sure if the last two are weird or not.

I can read in my dreams, and I always dream in color.

I've always heard that you never die in dreams- people say that if you die in a dream you die in real life as well- but I've died in a dream before. (in a hospital, after being badly burnt in a fire. It was the worst dream I've ever had, it was so vivid...) I did wake up directly after, though.

It's pretty impossible to know if people who died in their sleep were dreaming about dying, seeing as they're... dead, but I don't think I am, so...

I read in my dreams all the time! I'm still trying to get back to this one book about pirates that I found in my dream!school library years ago.

And I dream in color all the time too - and with scents and tastes. I love my food dreams :)

Yes, I'm able to read in my dreams now, but there was awhile there where I would get really frustrated because I would be struggling to read something and it would look like Russian or weird symbols. How I understand it is that the part of the brain that reads and the part that dreams are on opposite sides and that's why it's often hard for some people to do so. One time while I was dreaming, it just clicked and I've been able to read everything since then.

Some of my most vivid dreams have involved reading, and finding things in a very familiar book that I've never seen before. Or there was the time that I was having a freaky dream about an alien spaceship landing, and then it turned and there was something funny written on the side.

The first time I remember becoming aware I was dreaming while I was still asleep, it was due to dreaming that I was looking through one of my much-loved books for a particular passage of text, and I knew it was approximately 'this many pages' in, and halfway down the left page. So I found one part of the story that came before that passage, and kept flipping through the book and skimming until I reached a part of the story that was definitely after that passage. I did this a couple of times and realized that if the part I was looking for wasn't in the book, I must be dreaming. And I woke myself up. ;)

And we won't even get into the strange dreams I have about things happening on IRC or on my LJ friends page.

I can read in my dreams, although I don't have many dreams I remember that involve me doing so. I also always dream in colour.

I don't think it happens all that often for me, but one of my most memorable dreams ever did involve picking up a bunch of graphic novels in a store, reading the blurbs on the back, then starting to read #3 in the series. I guess it's a bit different because it was a comic, but there was text!

...And the scene I read ended up inspiring my first proper original novel-in-progress, so that was awesome. :D

reading

(Anonymous)
I'm sure I read in dreams. I've read a lot and I've written a lot of poems too, in my dreams I mean. Most of the time I don't remember what I've been reading or writing in my dreams. Once I wrote a complete poem, which seemed to be perfect. But I lost it.
I think dreams have their own colours: they're not in colour and they're not in black and white.

Martin Pulaski
http://hoochiekoochie.skynetblogs.be/

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