Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Dream Memories from Dream Realities

The series finale of the American version of Life on Mars (the show that follows Lost) finished with a punchline ending: The detective was actually an astronaut on a manned flight to Mars (with the significant people in 2008/1973 being his crew mates in 2035). I'll just copy and paste from Wikipedia my point:

To sustain the crew, their minds were routinely kept active while asleep using virtual reality "neural stimulation" programs of their own choosing, but Sam's choice of a 2008 scenario was changed abruptly to 1973 by a meteor-storm induced glitch in the computer.
Each hibernating astronaut was given a Matrix-like reality, with back stories and new memories appropriate for the dream reality (i.e., the main character Sam Tyler's dream reality has an abusive, criminal father while his real father outside of the dream was only a father-figure/boss in the dream reality - something like that). This is just like some of my own dreams. I guess to make sense of the sometimes alien territory of the subconscious - defying the laws of physics at times - one has to compensate by providing oneself with context, false memories, and background information relevant to the dream reality. The most complex of dreams creates its own complete artificial universe, if only for minutes of unverifiable existence. When one wakes up from a dream, some of these context memories are remembered, only to be refuted by the fact that none of it happened in real life (or did it?).

If these universe-building dreams only happen a few times a week (I can conjecture that some may have these dreams several times per night), how many universes have we been creating and destroying? What if we can harness this sort of processing power? What if those dreams can be harnessed into reality? What if this universe were just a quasi-lucid dream?

1 comment:

  1. I thought it was a decent series..
    it's too bad nobody watched it.. low ratings have killed some good series in the past.

    I like the whole sci-fi explanation to how he got to be in the 70s.

    In a way, it kinda reminds me of what those folks might have gone through in the movie Alien when they hybernate.. before of course, something happened and Ripley's the only one who survived :)


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