Dream of: 04 February 2001 "Sein. Nicht Sein"

Weinstein and I were in a room, having a philosophical conversation. Quite a few people seemed to be listening to us. To describe a certain concept, Weinstein used the words, "nicht Frucht." I thought he was saying "no fruit" in German. I wasn't quite sure of the German word for "fruit," but I thought he had pronounced it correctly. I then began talking in German and spoke quite a while in German. Finally, carrying the conversation forward, I said, "Sein. Nicht Sein." I repeated the words several time. But finally I realized that Weinstein didn't speak German, and that he didn't understand what I was saying. I switched to English and told Weinstein that for some time I had been trying to explain to him that these words "Sein" and "Nicht Sein" embodied the central issue of philosophy: Being and Non-being.

I continued trying to explain this philosophical thought which had been evolving in my mind for a while. I said, "The first question we have to look at is being and non-being."

I expounded on my thought, and told Weinstein that when we study the question of being, we discover that being is impossible. I wanted to expatiate on this thought, to try to explain how we could exist if "being" were impossible. I told Weinstein that in order to solve this enigma, we needed to look at infinity. Weinstein then brought up the subject of "immortality." I told him no, that we would reach the subject of immortality later, that the issue of immortality was farther down my line of thought. I explained that the next question after being and non-being was the question of infinity in terms of where we came from. I knew that after we had delved into the question of where we had come from, then we would turn to the question of eternity. The concepts of "infinity" and "eternity" were distinct, although interrelated.

As we continued talking, I slowly realized that I had been dreaming, and that our philosophical conversation had all been part of the dream. Both Weinstein and I were sitting together in a car. Wanting to record the dream, I pulled out a machine on which I could record it. As I prepared to record the dream, Weinstein asked me something about the "pretensions of writers." He asked me if I could give him an example of two "pretensions" which writers used to describe pole vaulters. At first I said, "I have no idea," then I said, "they're great jumpers" and "they're extremely high." But I wasn't able to focus my full attention on what Weinstein was saying because I was ready to begin recording my dream.

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