Moss-covered Monk

Moss-covered Monk


Monday, February 25, 2013

Daily Musing - February 25th, 2013 - Sleep - 睡覺 - Shuìjiào

Sleep - 睡覺 - Shuìjiào

pictures taken from

An escape from the world's ills
or consequence of exhaustion?
Recuperative relief,
or sojourn into
a separate dimension?
The tunnel closes in,
but the light creeps
ever closer.
From where
does one

~inspired by Deng Ming-Dao

When we sleep, some insist the world we live in ceases to exist. The world only exists, they say, because something inside of you insists upon it. When awake, are you no longer dreaming, or simply crossing the boundary between different dreams?

Going to sleep requires letting go. Any insomniac can reinforce the point that it cannot be forced without serious pharmacological means (and associated consequences). We identify the waking world by conscious control, but could the uncontrolled, chaotic visions of the dream-world be another reality altogether?

A dream can appear so vivid that it trails into this world, the boundary separating the two coming from conscious categorization. The dream-world came to an end with a crash, but residual images spilled through, eliciting an intense emotional reaction. Waking life appears so real, but we must let go every day. This strange contrast has been with us always, and Taoist sages have spent countless hours in contemplation on this single subject. Is life merely shifting between dreams, and if so - which one is truly real?