Philip K. Dick dreams of bookstores

20 Oct

A few weeks ago, I wrote about books appearing in dreams. Recently, I have been reading Philip K. Dick’s novel Valis and last night I came across this:

“The Empire never ended,” Fat quoted to himself. That one sentence appeared over and over again in his exegesis; it had become his tag line. Originally the sentence had been revealed to him in a great dream. In the dream he again was a child, searching dusty used-book stores for rare old science fiction magazines, in particular Astoundings. In the dream he had looked through countless tattered issues, stacks upon stacks, for the priceless serial entitled “The Empire Never Ended.” If he could find it and read it he would know everything; that had been the burden of the dream.

What is striking to me is that I have had similar dreams of looking in bookstores for some important book that would clear up the great mysteries of life.

My guess is that “The Empire Never Ends” is a reference to Asimov’s Foundation series, which first appeared as a serial in Astounding Stories.

5 Responses to “Philip K. Dick dreams of bookstores”

  1. Enrique Guerra-Pujol October 20, 2017 at 1:17 pm #

    Thanks for the pointer. I have read some of Dick’s works, but I had never heard his voice before. (I find myself having a lot of dreams lately, but I tend to forget what they are about as soon as I wake up.)

  2. jecgenovese October 20, 2017 at 2:26 pm #

    Most of us have a problem remembering our dreams. One hypothesis, linked to Freud, is that we are repressing the often disturbing material we experience in dreams. Another point of view says that because dreams are so unrealistic we have trouble forming strong associational bonds to their fantastical content. I not sure I buy either explanation.

    I have tried jotting them down, but find that is only effective if I do it right after I awake, even a delay of a few hours is enough to block the memory.

    • Kathy H October 25, 2017 at 1:31 pm #

      Last week we had an annoying smoke detector chirping every half hour or so. The house is new and I couldn’t disconnect it because it is electrically wired. Had to wait until the morning to figure it out. That night I had three nightmares. My hypothesis is that I remembered them because I did not get that deep sleep. I never usually remember my dreams.

      • jecgenovese October 26, 2017 at 2:23 pm #

        Sometimes people have better memory for thier dreams if someone wakes them up during the dream. Perhaps, that is what happened in your case.

      • Kathy H October 26, 2017 at 3:32 pm #

        I think that is exactly what happened!!

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