True dream. This too is a language in which Allah speaks to His servant. It is an opening through which tidings of unseen (ghaib) are communicated to man. These are unveilings and revelations. Rooyaa-e-saadiqah is the weakest form of unveiling (kashf) and revelation (ilhaam).
The rational soul (nafs-e-naatiqa) is like a way-farer in this world, imprisoned in the human body not of its own free will but under the Command of Allah. If it spies any outlet it tries to escape this physical cage, because of its natural inclination towards the abode to which it belongs. its proximity to the dense and narrow vision of corporeal existence influences it and if weak, it accepts that influence. It loses its original lustre and brightness and forgets its origins temporarily. But if it maintains its purity and wholesomeness and is not influenced by the darknesses around it, then its relationship with its real home (the soul world) remains strong. It anticipates and remains aware of the knowledge of its origin, The medium for this communication of knowledge in wakefulness is through the senses and during sleep through dreams. When the soul is resplendent due to its inherent purity, and is connected to its origin, then according to its capacity, the knowledge of the unseen world is unfolded to it even in wakefulness. This condition signifies spiritual perfection. When the rational soul (nafs-e-naatiqa) is not purified enough, the human sesnes become a veil for the hidden senses of man in wakefulness. Unless these veils are removed, revelations of the spiritual world do not take place. However , when the five physical senses are dormant during sleep, the veils are lifted and the door opens for revelations. At this stage, true dreams are experienced.
There are grades in the superiority of the unveiling. If the unveiling is in abundance, the revelations in dreams become free of doubts, and the events dreamt are not lost to memory. The dreamer does not make any mistake in their correct interpretation. But if the veils are not adequately lifted, then the power of comprehension remains weak and revelations in dreams are confused with other thoughts.
Thus the reality of dream is beholding of events in sleep when five physical senses are suspended.
Sleep is a condition of short death, and death itself is prolonged sleep. it is for the case of the body and not for the soul (nafs). Sleep is an exalted and oble condition for the nafs. The physical senses are more active if the inner potentialities are not perfect. But, if the inner potentialities are perfected, the nafs is strong enough to behold the realities. The physical senses can see only the outward forms; it is the nafs which can comprehend the realities. On this account the sleep of a scholar and a gnostic is superior to the wakefulness of an ignorant person.
Dreams are of three types:
The first type of dream is from Allah. It is bestowed on a person who is already blessed with the contented soul (nafs-e-mut-mainnah). In such a dream, all veils are lifted and reality and reality is apparent. Whims, fancies or stanic suggestions are totally precluded. the entire dream is clear and free from any doubt. Knowledge of the unseen is conveyed to the auliya-Allah through this dream. About such people, Allah says in the Holy Quran:
لَهُمُ الْبُشْرَىٰ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ ۚ
For them are good tidings in the worldly life and in the Hereafter.
Experts on the exegesis of the Holy Quran unanimously hold that true dreams are things for this worldly life, whereas the tidings of the Hereafter will be the vision of God’s Reality. Such dreams do not need interpretation s they are self-evident.
The second kind of dream has its root in the admoninishing soul (nafs-e-lawwaama). The general rule is that a person is addressed in the language except Arabic will be addressed in Arabic. This rule is also applied in dreams so that the dreamer can understanding the dream. A person high in spiritual state is blessed with the soul at peace (nafs-e-mut-mainnah), he can comprehend realities in their true form, unlike a person who is in possession of nafs-e-lawamma; spiritually he is far from the higher world. For this reason realities take on a singular form of descent so as to be coherent to the person. Whateverhe sees is shrouded in thoughts and images of thoughts. Realities are like meanings of words and forms are like letters in the alphabet. The shapes and forms revealed to the dreaming person depend on his personal capabilities. In the course of a dream, an Arab will be spoken to in Arabic and an indian in the indian language. Indians, well-versed in English will addressed in English. The deaf and dumb will be spoken to in signs and symbols. A blind person shall feel events in his dreams as he does in his wakefulness. In such dreams, there is an admixure of two things; the realities which are thrown at the dreamer from the higher world; and the dreamer’s inward capacity of interpretation. The capacity too, has various levels. the same person may undergo various states at different times. At times he may have freater inclination to virtue than vice and at times, the opposite.
The dominating inclination to vice mixes up the realities of the dream with evil whims and negative fancies.
Greater absorption with obscenity and sensuality will create confusing images due to the weakness of inner vision and grossness of intellect. Such a person does not have the capacity to correctly describe his dreams. At times he changes words and alters the entire picture of his dream. Such a dream then stands in need of an interpreter who can separate grain from the chaff and geniune from falsehood.
The dreams in both categories are from God. However, since the second category is corrupted by the nafs, these dreams are called khawaab-e-nafsaani. The interpreter separates the truth of this dream from adulteration.
The third category of dreams is dominated by nafs-e-ammaarah (soul that incites evil). All such dreams are satanic. They occur due to the domination of sensual desires and evil conduct, and are the result of neglect in worship and purification. Such dreams are called nightmares or satanic projections (ihtilaam-e-shaitaani). In these dreams, a person sees what he speaks or does during the day, or he sees meaningless things or things of mockery or fun which have no existance in thought or reality. Such dreams are not open to interpretation due to their uselessness. Such dreams may also be the result of mental disorders, drunkenness, unhealthy food or excessive eating and drinking.
According to a tradition (hadith), the dreams of pious people (royaa-e-saadiqa) are a forty sixth part of prophethood. Prophethood is the comprehension of Divine Commands of the unseen, therefore good and true dreams are a tiny portion of the forty six ways knowledge of the unseen world is comprehended.
Some of the causes of true dreams are enumerated below:
a) Moderation in food.
b) Light food.
c) Moderation in temperament.
d) Cultivation of praiseworthy qualities.
e) Perseverance in acts of worship.
f) Protecting the heart from evil and corrupt thoughts.
g) Purifying the heart from other-than-God.
Interpretation of dreams (Ta’beer)
When it becomes clear that true dreams are a language through which Allah Speaks to His servants, or a refulgent picture (tajalli-e-soowari) which dawns upon the heart of a man from the domain of thought, it becomes incumbent to understand that interpretation is a science by which we try to glean Allah’s message within that refulgent image from Allah and to recognize the portal opening for the unveiling of a Command.
An interpreter of dreams should essentially be equipped with the following qualities:
1– He must be a man of wisdom, a scholar of the Holy Quran and a reader of the traditions (ahadees) of the Holy Prophet SAW.
2– He should be knowledgeable in the language of dreams and conversant with etymology and derivatives of words.
3– He should know human psychology and the science of facial expression.
4– He should be an expert in the principles of interpretation of dreams.
5– He should be chaste, modest, pious, truthful, amiable in disposition, and sincere in speech.
While interpreting dreams requires knowledge of the circumstances of the people, variations of time and space, recognized proverbs, the name of the dreamer and the names of the persons dreamt, their derivatives have to be considered. Then according to topics in the Holy Quran and Hadith, the interpretation is given parallel to the dream and at times the interpretation is opposite of what was dreamt.
The seasons when trees bear fruit or when the fruits are ripening, the last part of the night or afternoon when a nap is taken, are occasions when dreams are usually correct and their results are also soon make apparent. Dreams in winter or in rainy season are usually weak.
To narrate a dream falsely is to cast aspersion on God and this is a great sin. False narration corrupt the real dream.
Compared to the consciousness which will be granted in the Hereafter, this wordly life is but a dream. As it were, mankind is asleep in this world. Death will shake them into wakefulness. The dreams dreamt in this world will be interpreted in the Hereafter; these dreams are of three categories:
1- The dream of the soul at peace (nafs-e-mut-mainnah) reflects Divine knowledge and deeds.
2- The second kind is nafsaani, reflecting images and ratifications as perceived by the heart.
3- The third type of dream reflects only worldly greed.
The finest dream a man can dream in this life is to behold the light of Prophet-hood, and through his inner vision contemplate the Reality of the Diving Being. In the dream, he experiences sweetness and flavour of the dream, and on waking up he will be blessed with the true interpretation of his dream and he will be honoured.