By Amy Brucker
Did you know the ancient Iroquois (American Indians) took dreams very seriously?
They believed that dreams carried the secret desires of the soul and that these wishes needed to be manifested in order for the soul to remain healthy. Illness was a sign of a dissatisfied soul.
“[The] soul makes [our] desires known by means of dreams, which are its language. Accordingly, when these desires are accomplished, it is satisfied; but, on the contrary, if [the soul] be not granted what it desires, it becomes angry, and not only does [it] not give its body the good and the happiness that it wished to procure for it, but often it also revolts against the body, causing various diseases, and even death.“1
As an ardent dreamer, I have to agree. Dreams are potent messages from the soul that reveal our purpose and path to health and wholeness. Ignore the messages and you risk upsetting your soul. And that’s a recipe for tough times. (Ask me how I know…)
So what do you do if you don’t remember your dreams?
In Iroquois history, dreamless sleep was a symptom of soul loss, and if Western dream recall is any indication of our soulfulness, we’re in trouble. I’ve discovered most Westerners don’t remember their dreams for a variety of reasons:
Lack of sleep.
Too much alcohol.
Lack of interest.
All of these contribute to dreamless nights.
But everyone dreams. The real problem is recall. So if you don’t remember your dreams, and you want to, what can you do?
B vitamins are widely proven to increase dream recall. I tested this theory by drinking green smoothies and Nettle infusions, and within 2 or 3 days my dream recall improved significantly.
In case you aren’t privy to the wonders of Nettle, let me share with you:
Nettle leaf is a pokey, thorny, ouchy plant that is full of vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins. It is a great source of calcium, protein, and other much needed nutrients.
Once every three morings (I don’t do this every day), I put 1 oz of dried nettle leaf into a 32 oz mason jar, then pour boiling hot water halfway, stir with a wooden chopstick (so I don’t break the glass), ensuring the plant material is submerged. Then I add more hot water until the jar is full and cover it with a plastic lid so the nutrients don’t escape with the steam. (I don’t use metal because metal lids seal to the jar and become nearly impossible to get off!)
I let this steep for four hours. Yes, four hours.
When the steeping is done, I pour the infusion through a strainer and back into a jar. (The leftover plant matter can be composted.)
I don’t chug this concoction, but sip it throughout the day or evening.
The first time I drank it, it tasted like grass. After a few infusions, though, the taste grew on me.
Nettle infusions may be safe to drink daily, but I drink mine once every 3 days so I don’t overdo it.
You can buy Nettle Leaf in bulk at Mountain Rose Herbs.
Drink Green “Dream” Smoothies
I’ve had the same success with Green Smoothies. Here’s my favorite recipe:
2 cups of spinach
5 strawberries (for flavor)
1 banana (for potassium)
1/2 cup of cool mint tea (any tea or juice will do, even coconut milk)
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy!
Sleep and Take Dream Notes
You won’t remember your dreams if you’re not sleeping. So start with good sleep.
Then remember, dreams are like friends. The more you engage, honor, and celebrate them, the more loyal they become. Keep a dream journal and at the very least, record a dream title and the date every morning so you know what you dreamed and when. You can always fill in the dream details later. This practice alone can help some people remember their dreams more faithfully.
Resource and fascinating read for anyone interested in dreamwork: