Dreams and Dreaming Essay

1043 Words 5 Pages
Throughout history, numerous people have studied the human body and its many functions. One area of the body that causes much confusion and controversy is the mind. Many parts of the brain baffle scientists, but a specific aspect of the mind that is fascinating and puzzling is dreams and their functions. It is surprising that an average person dreams for at least six years of their life, but scientists still do not know the role of dreaming (Shaw). Several theories have been presented to provide a reason for dreaming, and attempt to explain what most do not understand. Although dream research has been prominent lately, no agreement has been reached on which theory is correct on the purpose of dreams. Some believe that dreams are only …show more content…
While sleep patterns and cycles seem to be agreed upon by most scientists, the scientists’ theories of why dreams occur are far from being in agreement. One of the most famous dream theories is from Sigmund Freud. As the father of psychoanalysis, Freud believed every aspect of our lives is influenced by our subconscious mind. His basic belief is that our dreams are representations of our unconscious desires. According to Freud, we have many secret desires that are censored from the waking mind; Therefore, these desires emerge to realization in our uncontrolled dreams. As we dream, our wishes that could not take place in reality are fulfilled in our dreams. His theory is mainly based on sexual longing, especially in the explanation of what symbols stand for. He believed that dreams did not actually mean what they appear to be on the surface. Freud described dreams as having manifest content and latent content. Manifest content is the story or images that actually happen in the dream. Latent content is the unrevealed psychological meaning. It is in the latent content that the sexual symbols are revealed. He believed that almost everything in a dream could be interpreted through our sexual desire. Freud’s overall theory said that ‘‘Wish fulfillment is the meaning of each and every dream, and hence there can be no dreams besides wishful dreams” (Napierkowski). Freud’s theory is very popular since he is a more notably recognized in the physiological