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

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.

Dreams Can Help You Solve Problems

By Michelle Carr on August 26, 2015 in 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"

By Kristi Pikiewicz PhD on August 25, 2015 in Meaningful You
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

By Patrick McNamara Ph.D. on August 16, 2015 in Dream Catcher
REM has been shown to be genetically determined and important for emotional memory.

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

By E. J. R. David Ph.D. on August 11, 2015 in Unseen and Unheard
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

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on August 08, 2015 in Shadow Boxing
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

By Mark Goulston M.D., F.A.P.A. on August 02, 2015 in Just Listen
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.

Can You Visit the Deceased in Your Dreams?

By Michelle Carr on July 28, 2015 in 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.

What Do Dreams Mean?

Dreams have fascinated people from the beginning of time. People believe dreams foretell the future; that they have psychological meanings; we commune with sprits and the dead; that there are visitations from ancestors; dreams are filled with omens and auguries. They are steeped in mystery, as if written in some kind of secret code, decipherable to a special few.

Are You a Daydreamer or Do You Have ADHD?

When is it daydreaming, and when is it ADHD?

Aware During the Nightmare

By Michelle Carr on June 21, 2015 in Dream Factory
Lucid dreamers may unearth powerful unconscious fears or memories, turning their experience into a lucid nightmare. Techniques can help to confront and overcome these lucid nightmares.

AI vs AI with Humanity on the Sidelines

By Jay Richards Ph.D. on June 18, 2015 in The Violent Mind
Predictions of the future destructive malevolence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) programs have really heated up in this second half of 2015. But as daunting a prediction as that may be, in his new book Christoph Türcke argues that even more concerning is the severe damage that seemingly intelligent machines have already done.

12 Most Commonly Asked Questions About Dreams, Answered

By Patrick McNamara Ph.D. on June 14, 2015 in Dream Catcher
What is the current scientific consensus concerning dreams?

What Your Sexual Dreams Are Trying to Tell You

Sexual dreams, like other dreams, have layers of meaning. Some ideas about ways to decipher what your sexual dreams may be telling you.

Contact

The world can be a lonely place

Observing the damaged brain for clues about dreaming

By Michael J Breus Ph.D. on June 02, 2015 in Sleep Newzzz
In recent years, a number of important scientific breakthroughs in understanding dreams have come from research involving neurological conditions.

Why We Hallucinate

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on June 02, 2015 in A Sideways View
How are hallucinations different from illusions or delusions? What causes them? How do we explain them?

How to Direct Your Dreams

By Michelle Carr on May 28, 2015 in Dream Factory
We often feel that we don’t have any control over our dreams. But the truth is, we do. How we react to situations in waking life dictates how we behave in dreams, and in this way, we are responsible for creating our own dreams.

How Do Scientists Study Dreams?

By Michael J Breus Ph.D. on May 15, 2015 in Sleep Newzzz
Through research that relies on dream reports, scientists have accumulated a rich body of information about the themes and emotions contained in dreams, and about dream narratives.

New Evidence on Dreams and Memory

The dream lag effect, wherein images from daily events appear in dreams 5-7 days later, appears to be restricted to personally significant events only.

Lucid Dreaming and the Future of Sports Training

The results of this study clearly showed that practice in lucid dreaming does have real performance benefits that are at least comparable to the benefits gained from other practice modes. Given the power of dreams to simulate reality with amazing intensity and accuracy, the possibilities for further development of this approach seem wide open.