Dreams have also inspired important scientific advances. Perhaps the most celebrated of these is the discovery of the molecular structure of benzene by Kekule. His account: "My mind was elsewhere... I turned the chair to the fireplace, and fell half asleep. Again the atoms gamboled in front of my eyes. Smaller groups this time kept mostly in the background. My mind’s eye, trained by repeated visions of the same sort, now distinguished larger formations of various shapes. Long chains... everything in movement, twisting and turning like snakes. And look what was that? One snake grabbed its own tail, and mockingly the shape whirled before my eyes. I awoke as if struck by lightning; this time again I spent the rest of the night working out its consequences."
The Russian chemist Mendelev discovered the periodic table method of classifying elements according to atomic weight while dreaming. Elias Howe completed his invention of the sewing machine while dreaming. Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity came to him partly in a dream.
Other dream-inspired creations include literary masterpieces such as Dante’s Divine Comedy, Voltaire’s Candide, “The Raven” by Poe and Ulysses by James Joyce. Robert Louis Stevenson was able to formulate stories while dreaming, which he later wrote down and published. Even some popular music compositions by Billy Joel and Paul McCartney have come in dreams.
Such unusual dreams notwithstanding, our society as a whole has lost touch with the art of dreaming. Recently, however, a widespread interest in the creative power of dreams has surfaced, emerging from several divergent disciplines, including science, western depth psychology, the increasing awareness of native cultures, and religion.
from the preface by Michael Katz
'Namkhai Norbu - Dream Yoga and the Practice of Natural Light' is a 65 page book edited and introduced by Michael Katz.