A Belittling Dream
Last night I dreamed of a little dog. Not mine. Someone else’s. They took offense when I called their dog little.
“Don’t call him little,” they said. “Just say he’s a dog.”
There was a lot of vehemence in their tone of voice. Why, I don’t know. There is nothing more I recall of the dream except a dog and me being called out for calling it little.
When I awoke I tried to figure out where the dream came from. As my psychology 1A professor from junior college taught, dreams are the brain’s way of dealing with things we weren’t finished dealing with before we went to sleep. What hadn’t I finished thinking about? Was there someone I had belittled during the day, perhaps on line or in person?
No one came to mind. Then I looked at it the other way around. Did I feel belittled yesterday? Bingo. I’d posted something on line and – just before I went to bed – I saw that one commenter had disagreed with my take on things. That part was fine. The way they expressed their disagreement wasn’t fine. It was sarcastic and dismissive, with a strong sense of self-superiority at having figured things out while suggesting I was too stupid to have considered their view. In a word, the way they presented their position was belittling.
The dream of the little dog was my brain’s way of continuing to deal with what I’d been thinking of just before falling asleep.
When Dr. Martin Luther King spoke of his dreams, he spoke of the little ones among us.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of “interposition” and “nullification”, one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. (Martin Luther King, Jr., I Have a Dream, 8/23/63.)
King dreamed big, and in sharing his dream he encouraged others to do the same. Dreams that encourage goodness and right are dreams worth sharing, and it is worth encouraging those dreams and the dreamers who dream them as well.
Dreaming of righteousness and proclaiming goodness is a Godly act:
Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams. (Joel 2:28, Acts 2:17.)
- When you dream, are you encouraging or belittling?
- When you dream, do you hope for encouragement or belittling?
- When others share their dreams with you, do you encourage or belittle those dreams, those dreamers?
Dreams are matters of great substance. Encourage one another in dreams of goodness and righteousness.
Have a dream.