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Dreams and What They Mean
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Posted 7/16/09 , edited 7/16/09
Dreams have always been a mystery to me. Why do we dream? How does the brain project images in our head while we are asleep? And most importantly, what do our dreams mean? Has anyone else here ever wondered?

Have you experienced having weird dreams? Recurring dreams?

If you have your own weird experiences regarding dreams (like if one of your scary or happy dreams ever came true), please do share. And if you have your own personal theories about the meaning of dreams, you can share them too.

If this is a duplicate, feel free to delete/lock.
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Posted 7/16/09
Once did I experience a strange and weird dream : I was playing basketball with my friends, Suddenly did I saw a girl lonely on a stone crying. I was like ''Wtf is going on''. The weird part was that the girl I saw crying is someone I knew from my elementary school. Haven't seen her for like ages O_O

But, for me: dreams are made to dream. As a human being, you have desires to have or do things. Usually when you're in bed and thinking about it, there's a chance that you'll dream about it. At least for me it did happen.
Posted 7/16/09 , edited 7/16/09
My dreams are weird, like, seriously strange. If you were given a chance to come into my mind for one day you'd come out a new person...but not in a good way.

I've always had dreams of being chased or being alone in some dark place. Usually dreams are thoughts you try to suppress (at least that's what I think). I believe my dreams are trying to tell me something about myself, but I can't figure out what it is.
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Posted 7/16/09

brogits wrote:

Dreams have always been a mystery to me. Why do we dream? How does the brain project images in our head while we are asleep? And most importantly, what do our dreams mean? Has anyone else here ever wondered?

Have you experienced having weird dreams? Recurring dreams?

If you have your own weird experiences regarding dreams (like if one of your scary or happy dreams ever came true), please do share. And if you have your own personal theories about the meaning of dreams, you can share them too.

If this is a duplicate, feel free to delete/lock.


Hang on just one second while I fish up my notes from psychology class and I’ll answer the living hell at out of your questions.
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Posted 7/16/09
it's funny that you can actually see the future when you dream. I mean, once I dreamed that I went to get a new pair of socks. The moment I woke up, I changed both boxers and shorts. Pretty amazing, huh?
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Posted 7/16/09 , edited 7/16/09
Scientists have been intrigued by dreaming for generations, and after centuries of research we’ve created plethora of separate theories but lack a general consensus. In other words, scientists may very well have found the correct answer, but we’re not entirely sure which one it is. So, instead of arguing my personal opinion I will simply list the varying theories and let you make a personal decision as to which one you find most likely.

Unconscious wish fulfillment theory:

Originally introduced by Sigmund Freud, this theory states that dreams represent unconscious wishes that dreamers desire to see fulfilled. According to Freud the latent content of a dream is disguised in simpler images. Apples, for example, are the disguised form of a woman’s breasts. So if you dream you’re sucking on a an apple, it’s a sexual dream. Dreams that involve crossing a bridge or walking up stairs are also sexual in content. This theory is mostly valued as a historical item, not a scientifically accepted approach.

Dream-for-survival theory

According to this theory, dreams allow information that is critical for our daily survival to be reconsidered and reprocessed during sleep. Dreams allow information to be processed twenty four hours a day and are therefore beneficial to our survival. Research supports this theory, suggesting that some dreams permit people to focus on and consolidate memories. Lab rats, for example, tend to dream about mazes they've learned through the day. (Kenway & Wilson, 2001; Stickgold et al., 2001; Kuriyama, Stickgold, & Walker, 2004.)

Other dreams help us prepare for incoming events. For example, if you’re worrying about an up-coming exam at school you may dream of walking down the hallway towards that classroom, a sort of subconscious rehearsal. Freud's theory, on the other hand, says that if you have this same dream it's because you secretly want to do something sexual and heinous, like molest a small boy.

Activation-Synthesis Theory
J. Allan Hobson's theory that the brain produces random electrical energy during REM sleep that stimulates memories lodge in various portions of the brain, possibly as a result of changes in the production of particular neurotransmitters.

This electrical energy randomly stimulates memories lodge in various portions of the brain. Humans are programmed in such a way that we need a structured world. So, the brain takes these random memories and organizes them into a more logical storyline, filling in the gaps to create an overall rational story line. In other words, we did not attain dreams as a survival mechanism. Instead, they are the byproduct of other evolutionary characteristics already known to possessed by the human animal.

These are the three most major theories. Concerning how the brain ‘projects images,’ the answer probably won’t be satisfactory. In short, it does this the same exact way it does everything else; through a series of electrochemical signals. The brain is constructed of nerve endings called neurons. These neurons are separated by ‘pools,’ called synapses that are filled with chemical ‘liquids,’ called ‘neurotransmitters.’ The brain sends electrical chemicals from one neuron to the next, traveling through the synapses and their electro-conducting chemical neurotransmitters to produce thoughts or trigger memories in the form of higher language, images, sensations, ext.

Naturally, all of this information is an abbreviated version of my abbreviated notes from my psychology class at school. For a more coherent, detailed, and well presented introduction to dreams, thoughts, and similar such processes I recommend you pick up a copy of Robert S. Feldman’s “Understanding Psychology.” The chapter concerning dreams and sleep begins on page 147 in the eight edition.
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Posted 7/16/09
Dreams to me are beyond explanation, in my opinion. not even scientists can come up with some theory on what really triggers them or whatever. most of the dreams i had, some have came true, like a vision. I can't explain why i had them. Maybe dreams are a vision of foreshadowing something, or something else that has something to do with imagination.
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Posted 7/16/09

mystic17 Dreams to me are beyond explanation, in my opinion. not even scientists can come up with some theory on what really triggers them or whatever.


Actually we do know what "triggers" them, we just don't know their exact biological purpose. There are several theories on that, which someone posted earlier, but there is no universal consensus on which ones are wrong or right, which isn't the same as not knowing at all.


most of the dreams i had, some have came true, like a vision. I can't explain why i had them. Maybe dreams are a vision of foreshadowing something, or something else that has something to do with imagination.

Do you remember the dream after you wake up and then see the event some time after that, or do you see the event and get the feeling that you've seen it before?
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Posted 7/16/09

Cuddlebuns wrote:

Actually we do know what "triggers" them, we just don't know their exact biological purpose. There are several theories on that, which someone posted earlier, but there is no universal consensus on which ones are wrong or right, which isn't the same as not knowing at all.


pfft, just because they have a theory doesn't mean it's right. i just don't trust any scientists o people who think they're right all the time anymore (not saying my opinion is right as well), so i won't ponder on that anymore~


most of the dreams i had, some have came true, like a vision. I can't explain why i had them. Maybe dreams are a vision of foreshadowing something, or something else that has something to do with imagination.

Do you remember the dream after you wake up and then see the event some time after that, or do you see the event and get the feeling that you've seen it before?


one dream i had a last year, was when someone was pregnant & they had a girl, but in the dream i only saw the back of her head, but she looked like my cousin. & yet, in present day, she was pregnant & had a girl. even the baby looked the same in the dream. i doubt some cheap theory can explain why that happened~
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Posted 7/16/09

mystic17

pfft, just because they have a theory doesn't mean it's right. i just don't trust any scientists o people who think they're right all the time anymore (not saying my opinion is right as well), so i won't ponder on that anymore~


Of course, obviously the people who've created medicines that have saved countless lives and technology that has also saved and improved countless lives, and also helped us understand the world around us through countless years of research and hard work have no idea what they're talking about.

I never said that any of them are right, even said that there is no universal agreement on which theories are wrong or right. No legit scientist thinks they're right all the time, if they do then they aren't really a scientist.



one dream i had a last year, was when someone was pregnant & they had a girl, but in the dream i only saw the back of her head, but she looked like my cousin. & yet, in present day, she was pregnant & had a girl. even the baby looked the same in the dream. i doubt some cheap theory can explain why that happened~


That sounds like a pretty vague and general dream that anyone and everyone could have (just like many other prophecies and premonitions). Many people's heads, especially newborn baby's heads, especially if they are the same gender, look similar from the back. And it's not far-fetched to dream about someone close to you having a child, and then they actually have a child later in their lives. That's not a "cheap theory," just some (un)common sense.

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Posted 7/17/09 , edited 7/17/09

SeraphAlford wrote:



Perhaps I should have taken psychology as my major -__-'. I'm really interested in topics that talk about the workings of the mind.

I'll try reading the book you suggested.

Anyways, I've heard about that first theory before (the one formulated by Sigmund Freud) and I think that it is very ridiculous :w00t:. Personally, I think that we are the best judges of our dreams. Like some sort of intuition, we tend to understand what it's trying to say (more often than not). But I'm not saying that dreams really mean something--who knows? They could just be random images in our heads.

I have my personal theory regarding dreams...I'll probably talk about it later.
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Posted 7/17/09

Cuddlebuns wrote:


mystic17 Dreams to me are beyond explanation, in my opinion. not even scientists can come up with some theory on what really triggers them or whatever.


Actually we do know what "triggers" them, we just don't know their exact biological purpose. There are several theories on that, which someone posted earlier, but there is no universal consensus on which ones are wrong or right, which isn't the same as not knowing at all.


most of the dreams i had, some have came true, like a vision. I can't explain why i had them. Maybe dreams are a vision of foreshadowing something, or something else that has something to do with imagination.

Do you remember the dream after you wake up and then see the event some time after that, or do you see the event and get the feeling that you've seen it before?


I've had it happen both ways, personally. There have been times where my dreams are accurate down to startling detail. Prophetic, coincidence? Who knows? I like to think the former, but then that’d make me a prophet and I don’t FEEL like a prophet so maybe not so much.
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Posted 7/17/09

SeraphAlford wrote:


Cuddlebuns wrote:


mystic17 Dreams to me are beyond explanation, in my opinion. not even scientists can come up with some theory on what really triggers them or whatever.


Actually we do know what "triggers" them, we just don't know their exact biological purpose. There are several theories on that, which someone posted earlier, but there is no universal consensus on which ones are wrong or right, which isn't the same as not knowing at all.


most of the dreams i had, some have came true, like a vision. I can't explain why i had them. Maybe dreams are a vision of foreshadowing something, or something else that has something to do with imagination.

Do you remember the dream after you wake up and then see the event some time after that, or do you see the event and get the feeling that you've seen it before?


I've had it happen both ways, personally. There have been times where my dreams are accurate down to startling detail. Prophetic, coincidence? Who knows? I like to think the former, but then that’d make me a prophet and I don’t FEEL like a prophet so maybe not so much.


Well we know one thing for sure, when we dream it's like our brain is organizing the new information it got that day and tries to make sense of it. For me I don't ever having prophetic dreams, just really stupid ones. They might have had some sort of symbolic meaning to it, but otherwise no.

Outside the realm of science it's possible that dreams could be prophetic but there are a few things you have to keep in mind about the brain:
1. If you're prophesy told you about some of the details about 9/11 you'll probably just comprehend the simple things like mass hysteria and national panic.
2. Nitty gritty details like what collided into what and where (anything with specific names) you'll have blurred "vision" on because the brain has most likely not have connected those ideas together. The only way I can see those unlikely ideas connected together is if it's witnessed in the real world.
3. We are all prophets in a sense as much as all of us are teachers, cooks, etc. but the thing is most of us are amatuers at it. Reason is we all start out with a selective view of thinking, the way we want to see it. Even in the real world two people witnessing the same event will have variations of how they experienced it and will be different from everyone else who experienced it too. So odds are everything happened the way you saw your prophesy, it might be because you percieved it that way.
4. Knowing whether or not you recieved a prophesy may for most if not all people random, not taking theism into play (because me explaining that would take a little longer to explain and unecessary conflict within the theists). There are ways to calculate the future, thing is most people don't know how (and sadly I can't think of the name of the guy who is living and has equations to help him solve the future). A prophesy is like God giving you a math problem. You know what it is because it's given to you but you don't know how it's executed and what the ultimate outcome is. You only learn the latter when it happens in real life and the latter and former click in your head.
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Posted 7/17/09 , edited 7/17/09
I have experienced dreaming about my death three times. The dreams weren't exactly the same but all of them more or less had the same content. The first time happened about two years ago. I don't remember the dream vividly though. All I can remember is that in my dream, I was raped (how I was raped wasn't really shown in the dream, I simply concluded that I was raped because I was chased by a certain attacker and it came to a point where I had nowhere else to go and then...well...black out. I intuitively knew what that meant.). The thing that I could remember clearly was how I felt after waking up from that dream. It was seriously weird. I can't explain the feeling well enough.

Just last week, I dreamt 2 consecutive times about the same thing. Only, how I died was different. In the second dream, I wasn't in my own body. I was in a body of an actress who had the same name as me. It was the first time in a long time that I had a dream where the setting was nighttime. I can't remember exactly what happened. The only image I can remember was of the actress (I assumed she was me) running in a dark alley, wearing a gown. I can't vividly remember the scene where she was brutally chopped to pieces, but I do remember that that was how she died. In the next dream, I was in my own body and the story was really complicated. There were a lot of characters in the dream. The world was in chaos and there was a virus spreading (kinda like the virus in Resident Evil). The last scene was the only part I can clearly remember. My sister got the virus and I hesitated as to whether I would kill her or not ( I was holding an axe). In my head, I thought to myself, I should do the right thing no matter how much I loved my sister. And so I attacked her using the axe. But she didn't die and she attacked me and I blacked out.

Don't you sometimes feel like you just know what your dreams mean? I mean most of them don't make any sense, but in the back of your head you just know what they're trying to say? Has anyone had that feeling before? Because I think I know what my dreams meant. I think that they were like a sign that I was going to start behaving differently as if some part of me died. That my innocence died. Or that I changed my outlook. I feel like I'm not myself anymore.
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Posted 7/17/09 , edited 7/17/09
make sure dreams are not always Freudian!
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