golemxiv.co.uk / By Golem XIV / December 9, 2012
All nations, all peoples, I think, have dreams of themselves, of their better selves, of the people they imagine they could be. They are not rational and are often not even true. But then again dreams do not have to be true. We just have them. Or perhaps they have us. But those dreams have been dying recently. The dreams of whole nations have been withering and dying. As if some disease of our imagination’s immune system were turning hope against us. And we find ourselves collectively adrift, mourning for the people we thought we could be.
To lament the loss of something that was just a dream, and was, more than likely, not only not true but probably was kitsch and vaguely embarrassing, seems an odd thing. Yet the mind is an ancient creature with habits and byways far older than we, as modern users, are aware of. We need dreams. The rational mind would like to laugh at them as childish atavisms. Yet dreams, especially those we share with others, however shyly, help define us and, I suspect, protect us. Like an immune system they help us recognize self and non-self, host and foreign. Without them there is a loneliness to which we are vulnerable.