Perspectives on Dreaming
"That you have but slumber'd here
While these visions did appear.
And this weak and idle theme,
No more yielding but a dream…."
William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream
Each night, visions inhabit our minds during sleep and vanish with the morning light. These visions, these dreams, are without substance. Often, the waking mind recalls dreams only vaguely, if at all. A complete, separate world seems to exist within each of us; a world that can only be found through sleep, through dreams. What are dreams? Why do some people find nightly reverie in the comfort of their beds, while others dread sleep, terrified of the content of their dreams, and yet others recall no dreams to fear or fancy? …show more content…
The extent that external activity modifies dreams is difficult to ascertain because the person is often awakened by such activity.
A possible purpose for sleep is that decreased responsiveness allows the brain to undergo "dynamic stabilization," or DS, which is essentially the activation of synapses in neural circuits of the cerebral cortex to enhance and maintain neural functioning (2) . Generally, DS does not initiate the activation of a neural circuit because of extensive inhibition of the motor neurons, and is therefore "non-utilitarian", meaning that there are no visible physical results (2) . DS can occur during consciousness, but the cerebral complexity of warm-blooded vertebrates requires more DS than can occur simultaneously with the processing necessary for waking thought and perception. Sleep thus evolved to provide the brain with a condition virtually free from external distraction (2) .
DS occurs most frequently during REM sleep (2) , which is also the state biologically most suitable for dreams (1) . DS that occurs in the regions of the brain responsible for conscious thought is therefore a possible physiological explanation for dreams. Dreaming could be "a very short-term unconscious awareness" of the DS process that occurs during sleep (2) . Poor recollection of dreams would be expected in this situation, since the brain would have no
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysGet Access
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
Our dreams are objects of endless enchantment and mystery for mankind as far back as the beginning of time. The nocturnal
Dreaming, although a substantial component of our nighttime lives, remains somewhat of an enigma due to the fact that it occurs while we are unconscious. The inaccessibility of the unconscious mind weakens full analysis and comprehension of dreaming which researchers have been attempting to accomplish. However, over the years many researchers have elucidated many mysteries about dreams, such as when we dream, why we dream, and what we dream about, in order to bring forth an understanding of dreams as well as identify
To many people, dreams are the thoughts that occur while sleeping, having almost mystic qualities. For millennia the significance of dreams has escaped even the brightest of philosophers and intellectuals. Many people have speculated about why people dream and what meanings the dreams have but in recent times two theories have gained credibility in answering those questions. The first theory is Sigmund Freuds and the other is known as the cognitive theory of dreams also known as biological determinism.
An individual’s unconscious mind combines bits and pieces of information and places them together. Dreams are almost always visual. “Forty to fifty percent of dreams have some form of communication present in them and a very small percentage of dreams give the dreamer the ability to use his or her five senses”(Encarta). Dreams allow one to take a closer look into their mind in a quest for self-discovery. In ancient Greece dreams were believed to be messages from the gods. Hippocrates and Aristotle believed that dreams contained physiological information that may be cause of future illnesses. Dreams can be used to solve a number of different types of problems. In The Interpretation of Dreams, by Sigmund Freud he states “As regards the dream, all the troubles of waking life are transferred by it to the sleeping
Over the centuries people have attempted to discover the meaning of dreams. Early civilizations thought they were real physical worlds that you could enter from a dream state. During these times dreams were felt to be a way to connect with a higher power, in fact some were convinced dreams were a way to prophecies events. However it wasn't until the late nineteenth century that Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung introduced what are still the most widely known theories of dreams. In current studies the use of technology has advanced our understanding of the dream state: brain activity, neuroscience, effective medications and lucid dreaming. This paper will examine different theories of the science, interpretation and purpose of our dreams.
The notion of this paper is to bring dream theory within the framework of cognitive psychology, by preserving the suggestion that dreams are the personification and extension of our waking thoughts. According to the Webster Dictionary, the definition of a dream is a series of thoughts, images, or emotions occurring during sleep. Dreams are a vehicle by which the psychological process of cognition is altered into a form that can be perceived by the dreamer. Although images are the only means by which ideas find practical expression in dreams, other methods such as conversations, numerals, movements, and representations are employed in waking life, for making an individual’s thoughts known. Dreams contrast from the vast media of waking life,
Dreams can be awe-inspiring, strange and even downright disturbing. Dreams can evoke emotions, feelings and visuals that can bring out our worst fears, give us hope, and even allow us to change the world. There have been many documented scientific discoveries that are described as being first encountered in a dream, such as with Dmitri Mendeleev in discovering the periodic table: “In a dream I saw a table where all the elements fell into place as required. Awakening, I immediately wrote it down on a piece of paper...” All of this can make one wonder, what really are dreams, and what is their purpose? The truth is, this has been a mystery for scientists and philosophers for decades.
Whilst dreaming a person encounters all styles of scenes and scenarios, they may have up to seven dreams in one night tough will rarely remember any of them. The interpretation of the dream theory is in the dream state where the mind is working hard to clear out all the negativity from the subconscious from the previous day, doing this involves revealing scenes through the dream state to help the dreamer function past stress or day to day life. The first section of this essay defines the interpretations of the dream state. The second part of the essay focuses on lucid dreaming in which a person can control their dream state. The third section of the essay concentrates on nightmares and why they happen. The fourth section of the essay looks at the meaning behind dream catchers. The fifth
Dreaming has perceptions, emotions and thoughts experienced during sleep. Some medications enhance how dreams are brought upon, but a rare type of dream to have is lucid dreaming. A lucid dream is any dream during which the dreamer is aware that they are dreaming. This enables direct control over the content of the dreams. Studies could help unlock some of the inner workings of people’s minds and help them to better understand mental health problems. Those who do not dream is abnormal. "Everybody dreams unless there has been significant damage to the brain. Some people are just better at remember their dreams than others." (Riha)
Dreams are an experience that we all share as human beings, yet are also completely unique to each and every one of us. For these reasons, dreams have puzzled man since the beginning of time. Around the early 1900’s, a man by the name of Sigmund Freud pioneered the psychology of dreams through many of his theories. His ideas are a milestone in dream psychology and are still used today. As dream psychology developed, more and more theories were proposed and we now have a better understanding about dreams. However, since dreams vary to person to person, we have not completely discovered all there is to discover. The most difficult and complex questions to answer are why we dream, and why we dream what we dream.
Although the idea of dreams has always been a psychological one, there is a philosophical side to them. Descartes once said, "For all I know, I might be dreaming" (Bruder/Moore, Philosophy, 81). This conjecture of Descatres was one that explained the concept of dreams. He asked the question, How do we know that we are not dreaming and our whole life is but a dream? There can never be an answer to this question but it proves that there is a philosophical view of dreams.
I compiled a list of all the information I wanted to learn. From that list, I was able to shape my research question: What are dreams? Later, I was able to form a solution: Dreams are caused by the course of stimulating brain circuits for joining more recent memories with older ones.
Dreams are successions of images, ideas, emotions and sensations that occur usually involuntary in the mind during certain stages of sleep. Some people claim that they never dream. But that isn’t truth. Everybody dreams, but some people have a better memory than others. Some can remember their dreams vividly. While others can remember partially. And others can’t remember anything.
A dream is the experience of having images, sounds, or other sensations while sleeping. Many dreams come from various activities from throughout the day but some offer symbolic expressions. There is a connection between the conscious and the unconscious that can fill in the gaps of self-knowledge and provide the information needed. Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung have two theories on dreams. Sigmund Freud’s theory was that dreams are an expression of what one is repressing during the time being awake. Carl Jung believed that dreams provide messages about “lost” or “neglected” parts of ourselves that need to be reintegrated. Why do we dream? Dreams are wish fulfillment. They reveal wishes or emotions that one did not realize they had. Dreams