Posts Tagged ‘Dreams

01
Jul
09

Dreams – What do we dream?

In 1966 Hall and Van De Castle published The Content Analysis of Dreams in which they outlined a coding system to study 1,000 dream reports from college students. It was found that people all over the world dream of mostly the same things.

However, Dream research is often accused of working from biased or otherwise inadequate samples: Maybe the people who remember dreams are different from other people? Perhaps the dreams that people remember are not an accurate sample of their actual dream life? Maybe people don’t report their dreams honestly? Aren’t the sample sizes usually too small?

Dream content analysis has been used by many different investigators in the United States, Canada, Europe, India, and Japan. Hall himself applied it to dream reports collected for him in four Latin American countries and by anthropologists in many different preliterate societies. All of these studies, incidentally, showed there was more aggression than friendliness, more misfortune than good fortune, and more negative emotion than positive emotion in dream reports from all around the world.

Personal experiences from the last day or week are frequently incorporated into dreams. (In sync with the Pshychological theory)

Emotions

The most common emotion experienced in dreams is anxiety. Other emotions include pain, abandonment, fear, joy, etc. Negative emotions are much more common than positive ones.

Sexual themes

The Hall data analysis shows that sexual dreams occur no more than 10 percent of the time and are more prevalent in young to mid teens. Another study showed that 8% of men’s and women’s dreams have sexual content. In some cases, sexual dreams may result in orgasm or nocturnal emission. These are commonly known as wet dreams.

Recurring dreams

While the content of most dreams is dreamt only once, many people experience recurring dreams—that is, the same dream narrative is experienced over different occasions of sleep. Up to 70% of females and 65% of males report recurrent dreams.

Common themes

Content-analysis studies have identified common reported themes in dreams. These include: situations relating to school, being chased, running slowly in place, falling, arriving too late, a person now alive being dead, a person who is dead being alive, teeth falling out, flying, future events such as birthdays, anniversaries, etc. (with different scenarios), embarrassing moments, falling in love with random people, failing an examination, not being able to move, not being able to focus vision, car accidents, being accused of a crime you didn’t commit, suddenly finding yourself naked, going to the toilet, and many more.

Color vs. black and white

Twelve percent of people dream only in black and white. Studies from 1915 through to the 1950s maintained that the majority of dreams were in black and white, but these results began to change in the 1960s. Today, only 4.4% of the dreams of under-25 year-olds are in black and white. Recent research has suggested that those changing results may be linked to the switch from black-and-white film and TV to color media.

30
Jun
09

Dreams – Why do we dream?

Cool Quiz explains

Two different schools of thought exist as to why we dream: the physiological school, and the psychological school. Both, however, agree that we dream during the REM, or rapid eye movement, phase of sleep.

The physiological theory centers upon how our body, specifically our brains, function during the REM phase of sleep. Proponents of this theory believe that we dream to exercise the synapses, or pathways, between brain cells, and that dreaming takes over where the active and awake brain leaves off. When awake, our brains constantly transmit and receive messages, which course through our billions of brain cells to their appropriate destinations, and keep our bodies in perpetual motion. Dreams replace this function.

Psychological theorists of dreams focus upon our thoughts and emotions, and speculate that dreams deal with immediate concerns in our lives, such as unfinished business from the day, or concerns we are incapable of handling during the course of the day. Dreams can, in fact, teach us things about ourselves that we are unaware of.

Am not very sure which theory to bank on. There have been times when I have dreamt of wars and conspiracies and stuff like that. There have also been times (when I was preparing for IIT) when I have dreamt of hydrocarbon compounds, hydrogen bonds etc… Probably it was this time when I was having an overdose of chemistry. The second theory explains this.

29
Jun
09

Dreams – What is a Dream?

What is a dream? Why do we dream? What happens in a dream? Why can’t we recollect dreams?

I’ll try figuring out answers to each of these in the next series of posts. I’ll start off this one trying to figure out What exactly is a dream?

Wiki says

Dreams are a series of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations occurring involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not fully understood, though they have been a topic of speculation and interest throughout recorded history.

There is no universally agreed biological definition of dreaming. In 1952 Eugene Aserinsky discovered REM sleep while working in the surgery of his PhD advisor. Aserinsky noticed that the sleepers’ eyes fluttered beneath their closed eyelids, later using a polygraph machine to record their brain waves during these periods.

Found some interesting facts about dreams

  1. During a typical lifespan, a human spends a total of about six years dreaming (which is about two hours each night). Most dreams last only 5 to 20 minutes
  2. Animals have complex dreams and are able to retain and recall long sequences of events while they are asleep
  3. Dreams can link to actual sensations, such as the incorporation of environmental sounds into dreams such as hearing a phone ringing in a dream while it is ringing in reality, or dreaming of urination while wetting the bed
  4. The scientific study of dreams is known as oneirology.
  5. During the REM phase of sleep, our eyes dart rapidly about, our brain activity peaks and muscles suffer temporary paralysis. (Interesting)



So what’s this blog about?

Another attempt? Well yes. Attempting to figure out another sustainable model (there are some other attempts going on parallel-ly). Well, we have a lot of questions in mind. we read up stuff, we do some research to find answers to these questions. This is an attempt to publish that little 15-20 minute research.
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