There is a sinfulle state of dreames…and there may be a night booke of our Iniquities, for beside the transgressions of the day, casuists will tell us of mortall sinnes in dreames arising from evill precogitations; meanwhile human lawe regards not noctambulos, and if a night walker should breake his neck or kill a man, takes no notice of it.
~ Sir Thomas Browne, from his notebooks
I read once about an elderly man who dreamt he was wrestling a stag. The animal thrashed desperately with its antlers but he got an arm round its neck and gave a sharp twist. He woke to find that he had killed his wife of fifty years. One hopes he was a great philanthropist most nights – that he dreamt of curing cancer, bathing lepers or rescuing babies from falling pianos. It might have counterbalanced his transgression. But if we’re culpable for our dreams maybe God is similarly bound by dreams of universal pardon.