C.Do not start by saying “I am not dreaming”. Short messages: We all dream, although we may not remember them. Dreams are fascinating. And since they are thought-driven, there are many secrets. Let’s see what we can see and learn. Yeah interesting …
Vivid, crazy dreams that we often remember when we wake up are primarily associated with REM sleep. Deep (stages 3 and 4) slow sleep (non-REM sleep) is often associated with …
Are you an active dreamer? I’m sure. Everything is fair, but I have a small collection of content groupings that come to mind.
Here is a version of one of them that I experienced a few days ago. I was in Phoenix, a city I’ve always wanted to visit, and drove downtown on an expressway. I felt stressed and anxious.
As I drove along, I saw a huge suspension bridge – one of my biggest phobias – about a mile ahead of me. I said to myself, “Bet there is no exit in front of the bridge?” I was right.
What could I do? As in real life, I drove on. And before you know it, I started the climb. My anxiety symptoms – difficulty breathing, hyperventilation, severe muscle tension, wondering what I would do if I couldn’t continue – worsened when I reached the apex. And I started to loosen up as I started the downward cruise to land.
What is so fascinating about the dream is the accuracy of the entire bridge scenario. Man, I’ve been through it so many times. But Phoenix? I’ve never been there. However, when I look at a map, I see that there is no suspension bridge in the city center. And in my dream there were buildings that had nothing to do with the Phoenix skyline.
This combination of real experience and creative fill-in. Well, that’s what the mind does.
What is a dream
A dream is a typically involuntary series of images, thoughts, feelings, and various sensory experiences. Dreams most commonly occur during the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep. And that’s because brain activity is high and resembles a waking state. By the way, we are more likely to remember a dream when we are woken up during REM sleep.
Here you can find information about sleep phases.
A dream usually lasts between a few seconds and 30 minutes. The average Joan or Joe has three to five dreams a night. Some can have up to seven.
Specific types of dreams have been identified for both REM and non-REM sleep stages. Vivid, crazy dreams that we often remember when we wake up are primarily associated with REM sleep. Deep sleep (stages 3 and 4) with slow waves (non-REM sleep) is often associated with less active, thoughtful dreams. These dreams are primarily driven by the hippocampus, which is trying to process long-term memory consolidation. They mainly contain memories of events as they occurred without the accidental filling of objects in REM sleep dreams.
So it looks like my dream is a REM’er.
Where do dreams come from?
If you want to know where dreams come from in the head – brain – good luck. Scientists have yet to determine the true purpose of dreams for the mind and body.
As we just discussed, images during deep, slow wave sleep are primarily driven by the hippocampus as it is responsible for consolidating long-term memory. So we know at least that much about where dreams come from.
How about this for some additional insight? While we are awake, most of the internal images of the mind are managed by the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC). Executive functions such as reasoning (logic), planning and strategy development are just some of the results of the LPFCs. The LPFC works as an assembler and combines objects that we store in memory into unique combinations – for our use.
However, during REM sleep, the LPFC is inactive. And that probably leads to the dreamer not knowing that he is dreaming, no matter how absurd and crazy the dream is. This would allow the dreamer to interact more actively with the dream without thinking about what might happen. I mean, things that are remarkable in reality just fit into the dreamscape.
Incidentally, the release of the neurotransmitters noradrenaline, serotonin and histamine is completely suppressed during REM sleep.
Between suppressed neurotransmitters and the inactivity of the LPFC, we have a pretty raw mind during REM sleep.
What do dreams mean?
Who the hell doesn’t wonder at the meaning of their dreams? I just got “What does my dream mean?” Entered into google and got about a billion results. However, when we can’t get an interpretation from someone we trust, we make sense of ourselves. To be honest, that’s okay with me. Perception is reality, right? I mean, we are the ones who have to live with the interpretation and then acting.
For example the dream that I described in detail. I don’t have to go after anyone (pay much less for it). I will not go into that. However, the dream made perfect sense to me. And my confident interpretation has provided a good deal of insight so that I can formulate some next steps.
Look, in the world of science there are opinions about the meaning of dreams everywhere. The scientific study of dreams is called Oneirology, by the way.
Many scientists stay true to Sigmund Freud’s dream dreams. That would be the revelation of insight into hidden desires and emotions. Other scientists claim that dreams help with memory formation, which we discussed, and with problem solving.
Or maybe dreams are nothing more than products of random brain activation.
Interesting: During the 1940s through 1985, Calvin S. Hall collected more than 50,000 dream reports at Western Reserve University. In the Hall study, fear was the most common emotion in dreams. Other emotions were abandonment, anger, fear, joy, and happiness. Negative emotions were much more common than positive ones. Sexual dreams do not occur more than 10% of the time and are more common in young to medium-sized teenagers (ah, youth).
Dreams right? Fascinating topics, especially for those with a mood or anxiety disorder. They play a big role in most of our lives.
And I think we spend a lot of time searching for answers through our dreams. I mean, look how lucky I was to have such a lucid dream to work with right away. I might add that through our dreams we can learn a lot about how we sleep and what needs we have.
I hope you found this information interesting. Let it soak in and see if you can find ways to use it – your dreams – for your healing benefit.
Thanks to Wikipedia for solid resource material. Image Credit for the Brain: Psychology Today
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