Dreaming was an extremely important part of the Native Culture. It was woven deep into their tradition and their spiritual practice. Children would be taught to remember their dreams from an early age so that they could decode them and extract guidance from them.
But where does the soul go when we dream? Does it remain in our body as our minds explore the dream world? Or does it come with us into the dream world and explore alongside the mind?
These questions imply that we only have one soul. But according to Native Americans, we have 3 souls. First is the ego-soul, which is embodied in the breath. The second is the body-soul, which gives the body energy and life force during the waking state. And the third is the free-soul which is the soul that leaves the body during dreams and trances.
So as we can see, the Native Americans believed that a part of the soul literally goes and explores other dimensions (which we will look at more fully in a bit). It operates as the physical body sleeps. The other two aspects of the soul remain attached to the body as the free-soul traveled the dream world.
The Dream World
According the Native Americans, the mind does not dream anything. Neither does the body. Chippewa elder John Thunderbird explains it this way:
“Your soul dreams those dreams; not your body, not your mind. Those dreams come true.”
He also points out:
“The soul travels all over the world when you dream.”
They believe that a portion of the soul disconnects from the the physical body and travels the dream world, where it then communicates with other spirits of other human souls. In the dream world, you can also communicate with non-human animals as well. The dream world is just as real as the physical world. It is by experiencing the realness of the dream world that we appreciate the dream-ness of the real world.
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