Friday, March 28, 2008

Droning: between waking and dreaming...

We all know about waking and dreaming, the two superstar states of consciousness, but I am becoming aware of a third. It occurs when we sleep but don't dream. Here in slumberland, outside the surreal realms of true REM dreaming, there is a dull, thought-like, repetitive, non-visual cognition that occurs - basic stuff like to do lists or nagging emotional or social obligations. These messages can take the form of a voice, a song snippet, a single concept, or a feeling, and they can perpetuate like a skipping record or a lingering cloud of sensation. Do you know what I'm talking about? It is most often spotted as a kind of "echo" noticed upon waking from a non-REM state of sleep. It is the stuff that buzzes and exhausts us while we sleep.

Because I love naming things, I'm going to call it "droning." Droning is like the stuff that accumulates at the surface of a soup when it boils away on the stove. It is the fatty monoculture of the unconscious, a byproduct and distillate of the current content of the mind. But droning messages should always be examined before they are skimmed and discarded. In them lies the most accurate polaroid of your current state of being.

(sleeping gorilla photo by Tim Newsome)


Anonymous beth said...

This state between dreaming and waking is interesting. Sometimes I've found myself caught there and feel as though I am paralyzed. My mind has started to emerge from sleep but the brain is unable to tell the body to move.

Another fascinating in between state I've been contemplating is life between lives. You can read about it here:

6:28 AM  

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