Andersen Fairy Tales, Andersen-Hans Christian

Ole-Luk-Oie The Dream God

Ole-Luk-Oie The Dream GodOle-Luk-Oie The Dream God

There is nobody who knows more stories that Old-Luk-Oie. He comes up the stairs softly. He creeps into the rooms of children. He throws fine dust in their eyes so they cannot see. He carries two umbrellas. One umbrella he opens over the good children, and they see wonderful stories. Another umbrella he opens over the naughty children. This umbrella contains nothing. The naughty children awake without having dreamt a thing at all.

For seven nights in a row, he came to a boy named Hjalmar.




Ole-Luk-Oie sounds an awful lot like the Sandman. In fact, Ole-Luk-Oie is the sandman, but don’t confuse him with the other Ole-Luk-Oie, who is Death, apparently they’re related.

“Ole” is a common boys name in Dutch. The other part of the name “Lukøje” is a compound word meaning “close” and “eye.” This guy is going to come into your room and make you close your eyes, but I can see why Ole-Luk-Oie would also be death. When you die, you close your eyes, permanently.



Nobody knows why we dream. Dreams are difficult to study because you can’t be inside a person’s head. The sleep cycle is more complicated that we let on, in general, day-to-day living. There are several stages of sleep, and you spend various times in each. Most likely, we do dream every night, but we don’t always remember it in the morning.

To say that you’re bad if you don’t have a dream is mean in my opinion. It’s a physiological thing. It’s not determined by your merit as a person, although, if you are, in fact, a terrible person, you might be apt to have more terrible dreams, just because you’re a jerk.

There’s this idea that if you’re a terrible person somehow, subconsciously, you’ll be tortured. It may be through dreams, but it might manifest itself in other ways. Look, the mind is a strange, mysterious, and wonderful place all at the same time. If you’re doing something that you’ve been told not to do, there very well might be manifestations somewhere in your life. You could be experiencing things, even though you don’t realize that’s what it is because somewhere inside of yourself you know you’re not supposed to be doing that thing. Do you catch my drift?

It works the same way with worry. You may be worried about something, but not realize you’re worried about that thing, and then you have a dream, and you’re worried about that thing. You had that worrisome dream because you are actually worried about that thing, you just didn’t realize you were worried about it.

What I’m trying to say is that I think we can manifest things within ourselves and our dreams without realizing it. Is it a rule of nature that you don’t dream if you’ve done something bad? No, it’s not. All of this is a moral thing. Whatever morals have been instilled within you are what you’re going to chart your life with. All of this is made up by society. If society says you shouldn’t kick puppies, then you’re going to feel bad for kicking puppies. If society says you should kick puppies, then you’re going to feel bad about not kicking puppies. As far as I know, we don’t have inherent morality, but I could be wrong.

Bottom line–it’s not a physical thing that you dream or don’t dream because of your moral actions; it would be a mental thing placed upon you by society.



Death and dreams…there’s a lot that could be said about that.

Weigh In

How similar do you think death and dreams are?

Don’t you think it would be more appropriate to have a nightmare if you had been bad rather than not to dream at all?


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