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It's a dream


Our spiritual journey includes different degrees or phases of waking up from what is described as the ‘dream world’ of our ordinary experience. Many sages and teachers deliver the same basic message; our ordinary experience of the world, has no more substance than the dreams we experience when sleeping. They report that it is through habit or misidentification that we continue to direct our attention to this dream world? And they ask: Who do we think is having the dream? A major transition of spiritual realization occurs when one ‘wakes up’ from the dream. 

Such awakening can occur either gradually or suddenly, for varying durations of time and intensity, and does not necessarily occur in any particular order of one’s spiritual path. Nor can it be attributed to any direct practice or cause. Can satsang, meditation, or practices help us to wake up? Is this the ultimatee perspective of reality? So many questions occur until answered by the direct experience of awakening.

Although I cannot claim to have had a distinct, radical, or continuous experience of "waking up from the dream state," my understanding is informed by the great variety of quotes (teachings or pointers) from recognized sages. They each imply that the full waking experience is possible.













Just as the objects seen in our dreams are found, when we awake, to be insubstantial, so our waking perceptions are likewise unreal - a matter of inference only.

~ Swami Sri Yukteswar


There is no need of a way out of the dream! Don't you see that a way out is also a part of the dream? All you have to do is see the dream as dream. The very idea of going beyond the dream is illusory. Why go anywhere? Just realize that you are dreaming a dream you call the world, and stop looking for ways out. The problem is not the dream. Your problem is that you like one part of your dream and not another. Love all, or none of it, and stop complaining. When you have seen the dream as a dream, you have done all that needs be done.

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj


This life is a dream. To call it a dream is not to disparage it; that doesn't mean it isn't worthwhile. It's no different from dreams you have at night. You wake up from your dreams into this dream we call life, and when you go to sleep, you wake up in another dream world. But that which is awake in both worlds, the dreamer, is always the same. Awareness is always present. That's the reality. What doesn't come and go, even in the dream state? That's who you are."

~ Adyashanti


Nothing was ever born but a dream. Nothing ever dies but a dream.

~ Byron Katie.


The world is like a magic show - you manifest whatever you have inside you. If you have suffering, you will manifest suffering, and if you have happiness, you will manifest that happiness and the world will be a happy place for you. If you have fear and hatred, you will manifest these things. The world is like your dream life; it is as simple as that. Your dream life is very dependent on your mind; it is not God who determines your dream life. No one else is coercing you to dream one way or another. Your dreams are an expression of who you are; there is a whole universe going on in your dreams. 

~ A. H. Almaas


Without the projection of the mind, the world cannot exist. That world that appears to you in your dreams at night is just as unreal as the world that appears to you when you are awake. There is no difference whatsoever.

~ Jac O'Keeffe


The pictures and circumstances we see in our dreams are creations of our own imagination and have no existence save in ourselves. The same is true of the pictures and circumstances we see in this dream of life. They reveal our concepts of ourselves. The universe which we study with such care is a dream, and we, the dreamers of the dream, eternal dreamers dreaming non eternal dreams.         

One day we shall awaken from the dream, from the nightmare in which we fought with demons, to find that we really never left our eternal home; that we were never born, and have never died save in our dreams.

~ Neville Goddard


During our dreams we do not know we are dreaming. We may even dream of interpreting a dream. Only on waking do we know it was a dream. Only after the great awakening will we realize that this is the great dream.

~ Chuang Tzu


The only difference between you and an awakened person is that you figure the part you're playing is real. And to an awakened person it's a play, a show, a dream. When you think the world is real, then you get pulled back into the mire, and you have to start all over again. In other words if you want to become free and liberated in this life, you don't have anything to do with the part, the play, the movie. It’s all good indeed. But when you get caught up in it, then you have to play the part again and again and again. It is called karma and reincarnation. As long as you feel the world is real, people are real, things are real, you have to keep playing your part over and over again. But when you get to the point where you give up, and just focus on reality. You focus on reality when you realize it's all a dream. Then you become free and liberated.

~ Robert Adams 


The man who embraces the world as real, like the man embracing a woman in his dream, ultimately awakens to find nothing there but himself.

~ Ramesh Balsekar


This place is a dream. Only a sleeper considers it real. Then death comes like dawn, and you wake up laughing at what you thought was your grief.

~ Rumi

The soul in itself alone is not other than consciousness, which is all pervading. But when the same consciousness is caught in a limitation through being surrounded by elements, in that state of captivity, it is called soul. ... Every experience on the physical or astral plane  is just a dream before the soul. It is ignorance when it takes this experience to be real. It does so because it cannot see itself; as the eye sees all things, but not itself. Therefore, the soul identifies itself with all things that it sees, and changes its own identity with the change of its constantly changing vision.

~ Hazrat Inayat Khan


Thinking back over the past, you find it was an evening's dream. Realize that, and you'll see, everything is just a lie. Since, after all, this floating world is unreal, instead of holding onto things in your mind, go and sing!

~ Bankei


When thought dwells on person, place, or thing, you are functioning in the dream. All that is objectively witnessed must be understood to be mental images or mind projections--never spiritual reality

~ Joel Goldsmith

When you awake, you cross a line of no return, and you never see the world in the same way.

You are still dreaming, because you can not avoid dreaming, because dreaming is the function of the mind, but the difference is that you know It is a Dream.

Knowing that, you can enjoy the dream or suffer the dream.

That depends on you.

~ Don Miguel Ruiz


Life is a song - sing it. 

Life is a game - play it. 

Life is a challenge - meet it. 

Life is a dream - realize it. 

Life is a sacrifice - offer it. 

Life is love - enjoy it.

~ Shirdi Sai Baba


Don’t take life so seriously. This world is a terrible place; there is no safety here. But what are we to do? We must stop talking life so seriously. Delusion can be overcome by holding steadfastly to one philosophy: everything here is nothing more than God’s motion picture. Don’t make a fuss about anything. Whenever you worry, remember, you are deepening the cosmic delusion within you. It is your own dreams that frighten you. In every form of sense experience you must remind yourself, ‘IT IS A DREAM!’ So don’t be attached to the passing dreams of life. Live for God and God alone.

~ Paramahansa Yogananda


Another possibility: As long as you believe that Ramana, Nisargadatta, Buddha, Christ, etc. were actually “real people,” then you’re that much more likely to believe that “YOU,” also, are a “real person,” too. In truth, though, there really aren’t any “separate people.” In truth, “who-you-REALLY-are” is the ultimate Source of ALL of these spiritual teachers and of ALL of their spiritual teachings. They simply “appear” and “disappear” from within the dreaming Heart of who “YOU” really are. And, yes, it's a great mystery.

~ Chuck Hillig

I am the Creator, I am not my experiences; they are me. I see only what I prefer. I see only the Self. There is Only Self; no "out there" or "other." Choose the frequency of Self. That is Free Will. It generates experiences. See the state you prefer only. I am - as you are - The Ultimate Free Agent of The Infinite One. Create, as you already do without fail each nano-second; hence you experience. Be awake to the dream you are dreaming. Remember that you are the dreamer of this dream. Wake up. Rest in that. Absolute faith. You are free.

~ Bentinho Massaro


Mark Twain wrote in The Mysterious Stranger (1916): "There is no God, no universe, no human race, no earthly life, no heaven, no hell. It is all a Dream, a grotesque and foolish dream. Nothing exists but you. And You are but a Thought — a vagrant Thought, a useless Thought, a homeless Thought, wandering forlorn among the empty eternities."


The dream we are living has absolutely no purpose other than our awakening.

~ Tony Parsons


Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakens.

~ Carl Jung


Both sleep and waking are misnomers. We are only dreaming. True waking and true sleeping only the jñani (true knower of God) knows. We dream that we are awake, we dream that we are asleep. The three states are only varieties of the dream state. Treating everything as a dream liberates. As long as you give reality to dreams, you are their slave. By imagining that you are born as so and so, you become a slave to so and so. The essence of slavery is to imagine yourself to be a process, to have a past and a future, to have history. In fact, we have no history, we are not a process, we do not develop nor decay; see all as a dream and stay out of it....“Your world, of desires and their fulfillments, of fears and their escapes, is definitely not my [the Self's] world. I do not even perceive it, except through what you tell me about it. It is your private dream world and my only reaction to it is to ask you to stop dreaming. “A dream cannot be shared”-  nor can the waking state. All the three states (of waking, dreaming and sleeping) are subjective, personal, intimate. They all happen to and are contained within the little bubble in consciousness, called “I.” The real world [the Self] lies beyond the self [the ego-self]….

Engrossed in a dream you have forgotten your true self....The world is not, you alone are. You create the world in your imagination like a dream....[“When did the dream begin?”] “It appears to be beginningless, but in fact it is only now. From moment to moment you are renewing it. Once you have seen that you are dreaming, you shall wake up. But you do not see, because you want the dream to continue. A day will come when you will long for the ending of the dream with all your heart and mind and be willing to pay any price; the price will be dispassion and detachment, the loss of interest in the dream itself…. Wanting it to continue is not inevitable. See clearly your condition, your very clarity will release you.

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj


If you can understand how your dream comes into being, you can know how this creation came into being. Sleep causes dreams; the Maya (the deluding power) of the Divine has caused this creation! This universe is as unreal [and as real] as the dream. It is only relatively real; it is not absolutely real. . . The visible world is as unreal as the dream world. Just as through illusion a snake is imposed upon a rope, the world too is imposed on Brahman [Reality] . Awake. And you will have no more dreams. When the dream is gone, the delusion also goes….When the waking state is transcended, it also is seen to be a dream,… the waking state is seen to be a dream, and the dream state a dream within a dream. . . . While you dream, the thing is very real, but when you wake up it turns out to be unreal, 

So, too, the cosmos is caused by Maya. The cosmos is as ephemeral and as vagarious as a dream. The time will come when the whole of this dream will vanish. To everyone of us there must come a time when the whole universe will be found to have been a mere dream….The world is but a mental image of the individual. How this happens is a mystery. One can only say that just as sleep is the cause of dreams, maya or the basic ignorance is the cause of creation. ... Dreams are nullified when the person becomes ajñani [one aware of the Truth]. At that stage one gets rid of [transcends] the night-dream as well as the day-dream.

~ Sai Baba of Shirdi


Once there was a King who was rich beyond compare. He took a walk through his massive kingdom and stopped at one of his lakes. There, he fell asleep, and dreamt that he was a beggar.The dream was quite vivid, and in the dream he suffered terribly. Upon awaking he realized he was a King and not a beggar. He was confused, and began questioning himself, “Am I a King dreaming I am a beggar, or am I a beggar dreaming I am a King.” After consulting with many sages, The wisest of the wise approached. The King asked, “which is the dream?” He asked, “Am I a King dreaming I am a beggar or a beggar dreaming I am a King, which is the dream?The sage replied, “They are both dreams”.

~ Stephen Wolinsky


We are weaving our dream every moment. All of life is a projection.

~ Dalai Lama


In a fortunate life, comes a call to be free, from the cycle of bondage and misidentity, to wake from the dream and finally realize the truth of one's being before the body dies

So before the final scene is past, see the screen on which it's cast. See what's seeing this me and you. And then you will see, who you really are, who you really are. Who you really are, who we really are

~ Kirtana


All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.

~ Edgar Allan Poe.


Beloved Force that gives me breath, that pumps my blood, that spins these stars, that dreams this dream, that sings this love, may thy will be done - may thine and mine be one. 

~ Kirtana 


There is no need of a way out. Don't you see that a way out is also part of the dream? All you have to do is see the dream as a dream. 

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj 


In an instant, an entire world is created when you dream. The dreamer merely watches, having no control over what the dreamed characters are doing. Then you awaken. In an instant, an entire world is created.

~ Wu Hsin


You see, it's all a creation of the mind, an endless movie, a terrible dream. Don't try to change the dream, because trying to change it is just another movement in the dream. Look at the dream. Be aware of the dream. That awareness is It. Become more interested in the awareness of the dream than in the dream itself. What is that awareness? Who is that awareness? Don't go spouting out an answer, just be the answer. Be It. 

~ Adyashanti


Suffering just means you’re having a bad dream. Happiness means you’re having a good dream. Enlightenment means getting out of the dream altogether.

~ Jed McKenna


Pause now to ask yourself the following question: "Am I dreaming or awake, right now?" Be serious, really try to answer the question to the best of your ability and be ready to justify your answer. 

~ Stephen LaBerge


Every experience of the physical, astral or mental plane is just a dream before the soul.

~ Hazrat Inayat Khan


Do realize that it is not you who moves from dream to dream, but the dreams flow before you, and you are the immutable witness. No happening affects your real being - that is the absolute truth.

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj


One wakes up each day from the dream....but to be free, one has to wake up from the waking state.

~ Mooji

I love the dream of past and future. They seem so real.

~ Byron Katie


A dreamer dreams a dream.

He sees the dream world with pleasures, pains. etc.

But he wakes up and then loses all interest in the dream world.

So it is with the waking world also.

Just as the dream-world, being only a part of yourself

and not different from you, ceases to interest you,

so also the present world would cease to interest you

if you awake from this waking dream (samsara)

and realize that it is a part of your Self,

and not an objective reality.

Because you think that you are apart from

the objects around you, you desire a thing.

But if you understand that the thing was only a thought-form,

you would no longer desire it.

All things are like bubbles on water.

You are the water and the objects are the bubbles.

They cannot exist apart from the water,

but they are not quite the same as the water.

~ Ramana Maharshi

This life is a dream; we’re dreaming we’re a person living in a world that we are convinced is real. We don’t realize it’s all a dream. The whole world as now seen is nothing but a dream-illusion that never was. The truth is just behind the outward world.

~ Lester Levenson


We should be open to the possibility that this is a dream and when we do, everything changes dramatically. It actually turns out to be so. If this waking experience is seen to be a dream, then our behavior changes and we will find that the response coming from the characters or the situation in this dream also changes.

~ Francis Lucille


If you could all at once stop believing your dreaming mind and be completely still right in the midst of your present state, the Infinite would effortlessly present itself.

~ Adyashanti


Just as when you are dreaming—you go to sleep and dream that you are this person here, and in the dream there are people, cities, universes, airplanes; you could marry, you could get divorced, you work, you have a wonderful time or a miserable time. . . . Right? And it feels completely real; in the dream it feels absolutely real. You wake up and it is gone. It was never really there. All of it was just ideas; you created all of this in your mind. But in the dream, you do not question it, you do not say it is a dream. You are dead sure it is reality. So that is the way I see the situation right now—all of you are dreaming, and are dead sure it is reality. And you believe that you are there and that person is there, and you are talking to that person. But when you wake up, you realize, no, it is actually all in one place, in your mind. These people do not exist, not in the sense that we usually think. That is why it is said that most people live a dream life, live the life of illusion.

~ A.H. Almaas


You are the Self in a dream journey of losing yourself and having to find your way back home. Auspiciousness is when the very dream itself is telling you, "Wake up."

~ Mooji


This is your Universe, of your own creation.

Everything comes out of your mind, everything.

Just as when you're sleeping, you're dreaming,

and dreams seem real to you, then you awaken.

So it is with this world.

You're dreaming the mortal dream.

You think it's real.

You get involved in it, and you're caught up in it,

and it gets worse and worse.

You just have to realize it's a dream and wake up.

And what happens when you wake up?

You do not find yourself in a place called heaven, in a strange land.

You'll be as you are.

When you awaken, you will function as you do now.

Except you'll know you're playing a part.

That's the only difference.

~ Robert Adams


The whole life is a succession of dreams. My ambition is to be a conscious dreamer, that is all.

~ Swami Vivekananda


One day you will look back and laugh at yourself.

You will say, "I can't believe I was so asleep"!

How did I ever forget the truth?

How ridiculous to believe that sadness and sickness

are anything other than bad dreams.

~ Rumi


How can you prove whether at this moment we are sleeping, and all our thoughts are a dream; or whether we are awake, and talking to one another in the waking state?

~ Plato


The truth sets us free from any attachment to the concepts “self” and “other.” There are no humans; there is no mind; it’s all a dream. The practice of inquiry deletes everything, as long as mind believes that it exists even as mind. The projected world unravels first, and then mind, and any trace that even mind ever existed. That’s my world. When it’s over, it’s over.

~ Byron Katie


Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.

~ Carl Jung


First come out of the dream of maya.

Then later you may go in again if you wish to.

You can enjoy the dance while being awake.

Thus, free of delusion,

the one who is awake enjoys this dream the most.

~ Mooji


Your wounds of love can only heal

When you can forgive this dream.

~ Hafiz


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