All About Dreaming

Why we dream is still one of the behavioral sciences' greatest unanswered questions. Researchers have offered many theories—memory consolidation, emotional regulation, threat simulation—but a unified one remains, well, a pipe dream. Nevertheless, people continue mining their nighttime reveries for clues to their inner lives, for creative insight, and even for premonitions.

Recent Posts on Dreaming

Why Unwanted Thoughts Keep Invading Your Dreams

By Michelle Carr on November 11, 2015 Dream Factory
Think you can avoid thinking about that pesky relationship problem? In your dreams!

Ending the Nightmares

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on November 11, 2015 Media Spotlight
Studies of veterans show that they may experience a wide range of PTSD symptoms, including nightmares. Some surveys reveal that more than half of all participants report their sleep as being "bad" or "very bad" though few report having any problems before being deployed.

Are Your Dreams Keeping You Awake?

By Susan Reynolds on November 02, 2015 Prime Your Gray Cells
Dreams are our brain's way to process emotions while we sleep. If you're super stressed and suffering from restless nights, even nightmares, image therapy can be an effective way to "rewrite" your dreams.

People Who Don't Dream Might Not Recall Their Dreams

By Patrick McNamara Ph.D. on October 25, 2015 Dream Catcher
Although some people swear that they have never dreamed new data suggests that they may be mistaken.

10 Ways to Listen for Your Callings

By Gregg Levoy on October 18, 2015 Passion!
There are many channels through which our passions and callings make themselves known to us. Here are 10 of the most common.

Watch Dream Research in Action!

By Michelle Carr on October 14, 2015 Dream Factory
Dream researcher Elizaveta Solomonova discusses how we can learn more about dreaming through the study of experienced meditators.

Resilience, Growth & Kintsukuroi

By John Sean Doyle on October 03, 2015 Luminous Things
Standing and staring in the face of broken promises and broken dreams, eye-to-bloodshot-eye with our most assiduous fears, sometimes we discover that we were stronger than we imagined: that we can withstand more and that there is no reason to fear.

The Link Between Mindfulness, Meditation, and Lucid Dreaming

By Michelle Carr on September 30, 2015 Dream Factory
Mindfulness is aimed at improving an individual`s capacity to maintain awareness of the present moment, with an open and non-judgemental attitude. Could practicing mindfulness increase our awareness during sleep, promoting more frequent lucid dreams?

Are We Responsible for Our Violent Dreams?

By Patrick McNamara Ph.D. on September 26, 2015 Dream Catcher
Mental content of dreams can sometimes perfectly coincide with mental content of overt behavioral acts and that fact can raise thorny legal and philosophical issues.

5 Secrets to Do What You Don’t Want to Do

Do you know what is best for you, yet find it difficult to actually WANT to do what you need to do? Here are 5 secrets on how to get yourself to do what you need to do, in order to get what you most desire.

Want to be a Parent?

Parents are not rational. Children are not choices. Neither parents nor children are individuals. Rather, parents and children emerge together, in relation to one another, expressions of life itself, as a potential matrix of mutually enabling loves.

Solving Problems in Your Dreams

By Kristian Marlow on August 29, 2015 The Superhuman Mind
Combine your next all-nighter with meaningful rest through lucid dreaming.

The Sweetness of September

By Rictor Noren on August 29, 2015 Music Maker
John Field guides us gently through this change of seasons, and invites us into a deeper conversation with ourselves.

Sleep, Dreams, and Income Inequality

Low-income people tend to have worse sleep, and fewer lucid dreams, than do high-income people. Those are some of the findings from a new demographic survey of the sleep and dream patterns of American adults.

Women's Sexual Fantasies - the Latest Scientific Research

It's important to note that while headline writers may focus on the fact women have sexual fantasies about coercive sex, this research finds it's an occasional daydream, not a preoccupation. It would be similarly unfair to tar men with the brush of an occasional fantasy they may have.

How Bad Dreams Can Help You Solve Your Problems

By Michelle Carr on August 26, 2015 Dream Factory
Several authors have shown that current emotional problems are frequently incorporated into dreams, and further, dreaming may provide creative solutions to these problems.

Movie Review: "I'll See You In My Dreams"

At first glance, Carol Petersen (Blythe Danner) appears to be living the dream. At second glance, it looks like Carol is not so much living a dream as she is sleepwalking through life.

Recent Research on REM Sleep Functions

REM has been shown to be genetically determined and important for emotional memory.

52 Years Later: The Distortion of Martin Luther King's Dream

Having a "colorblind" and "melting pot" society are popular ideas that many have automatically regarded as consistent with MLK's dream of a just and equal society. The research literature, however, suggests that such "catchy" concepts have merely hidden prejudices and preserved oppressive systems, operating as barriers to truly achieving MLK's dream. Let's break them down.

Chasing Dreams or Avoiding Nightmares?

There are two kinds of achievers. Which kind should be? Which one will yield results faster?

Top 3 Tips for “Fantasy-Prone” Writers

The so-called fantasy-prone person is actually a repository of hidden talents.

Why We Need Work

As much as we might like to inhabit another vision – perhaps lounging on the deck of our new home as we gaze at the ocean across an unpopulated beach – it would be our undoing. What work teaches, and what the Puritans emphasized, is the value of charting a trajectory for one’s life and of maintaining that trajectory.

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep... Annotated

Now I lay me down to sleep, At the end of the day this is about not doing another thing before you fall asleep. It's about letting go of control with the hope that a good night's sleep will replenish your mind (with everything that the stresses of the day has taken away), will refresh it and enable you to "reboot" it to take on the next day playing with a

New Empirical Research on Dream Recall and Content

These new articles in the journal Dreaming show the importance of taking age, culture, and external threats into account when trying to understand the nature and functions of dreams in people’s lives.

Dreaming in the Land of the Dead

By Michelle Carr on July 28, 2015 Dream Factory
Evidence from anecdotal reports and cultural practices suggest that it is possible to interact with lost loved ones in the land of dreams, a "bardo" state of consciousness that is similar to death.

Algorithms of Dreaming: Google and the "Deep Dream" Project

Google has developed a computer program that spontaneously generates images with "dream-like" qualities. This new technology can help dream researchers by teasing out which specific features in dream vision are related to amplified versions of waking vision.

Fraudulent Draft Day Fantasies

The lights of the NHL shine bright on draft night and they can easily blind optimal motivation. Sometimes dreams can be so vivid and so emotionally sustaining they leave an individual neglecting to attend to important initiatives and hurdles during the journey.

Some Medications May Alter Childhood Brain Development

Medications that disrupt REM sleep may alter brain structure during critical phases of child development.

Developments in the Treatment of PTSD Nightmares, Part 2

Two weeks ago, I posted part 1 of my interview with Dr. Murray Raskind about his pioneering work in the field of PTSD and the treatment of nightmares. Here is the second half of our interview.

Developments in the Treatment of PTSD Nightmares, Part 1

"What Dreams May Come: Treating the Nightmares of PTSD" was a blog post I published in November 2013. It remains a very popular post, which continues to receive many views and comments. In light of this, on 5/22/2015 I interviewed Dr. Murray Raskind about his pioneering work in the field of PTSD and the treatment of nightmares.