What makes a dream really significant, is when the consciousness has completely retreated into the heart centre, dispensed with the contribution of the brain, and is working in complete accord with the master world-image which it finds within the heart.
Such a dream then has nearly the same status as the waking state but it is a different kind of experience. Its significance will be intuitively felt after awakening. It may happen that one dreams of things and thoughts, persons and events, which cannot be ascribed to earlier waking perceptions by any stretch of theory. Such dreams leave extremely vivid after-images and their memory is hard to shake off, even after several years have passed. The sense of familiarity with new places or persons may, on rare occasions, be due to this cause. These dreams arise out of one’s karma and are either actual transcripts or vague reminiscences of former happenings. Their roots are deep down in earlier incarnations and they revive events that happened then.
There are rare dreams, which are most important because they originate from an altogether different level of mind than the animal part of one’s being. One who will not listen to the sublime whisper of one’s divine self (or a part of one’s cosmic spirit that resides in the heart) during waking hours will respond more easily during dreaming periods when the veil is thinner, partly because one’s egoistic will is more relaxed and partly because one is actually nearer the source of consciousness. It is dreams of this superior character that bear good fruit after one awakes.
Akin to them but also rare are those half-remembered dreams wherein one who has learnt to live in the divine self appears to a friend, student or follower to exalt, warn, guide or encourage at a critical time and invariably in a clear connected vision at the moments preceding death.
One must realise that the body has a very important role to play in spiritual life; if it is not well trained it can prevent the spirit from leaving it and doing the work it has to do. There is more than one kind of sleep. Most people would be horrified if they knew where they spend their nights, the psychic regions they go to when they are asleep. They spend their time floundering in the swamps of their own bad habits and coarse appetites. Very few are sufficiently detached to free themselves from their sensations and the desires of the physical. When one’s soul manages to escape from one’s sleeping body it is never idle; it moves about, contemplating and communicating with heavenly spirits and gaining greater understanding of love, wisdom and truth. When it re-enters one’s body, it brings with it the memory of all the revelations it has received and attempts to pass them on to one’s brain. It is these memories that are called dreams. This is why one should try to recall one’s dreams as soon as one is awake, for at that moment the principal images are still floating in one’s brain.