Dreams often feel like another form or reality we’re experiencing. They are sometimes difficult to explain or even to remember, but we know it felt so real and vivid while we were dreaming it. Dreaming is a trance-like state during which our body and mind rest, or so it should be. Our mind doesn’t really rest, though.
But what are dreams exactly?
There are hundreds of different and competing theories about what dreams really are. Roughly speaking, dreams are sensations, thoughts, images and fantasies we experience while we’re asleep. According to Sigmund Freud, dreams are our window into the realm of unconscious. And the unconscious is dozens and even hundreds of times bigger and more powerful than our conscious.
During our R.E.M. phase we are in our deepest stage of the sleep cycle. This is when our eyes start moving rapidly, our muscles paralyze and our breathing becomes uneven. During R.E.M cycle our dreams are the most vivid.
Sometimes a dream is simply a dream – but sometimes it’s something more.
Do we leave our bodies when we sleep?
People all around the world have had some rather bizarre experiences when they are actually able to detach themselves from their bodies. You know this because you’re able to see yourself while you’re sleeping. It’s a bizarre phenomenon and nobody really knows what happens in this stage of sleep.
Scientist have also been puzzled by this dream dilemma, and are trying to figure out the nature of this phenomenon. Is our spiritual body really leaving our physical, or is it just a form of deception, a mind trip?
In a new study, researchers used a camera that created an illusion to participants that their physical body was at the other side of the room while they were lying in a brain scanner. They measured the participant’s brain reaction to the illusion created, to determine which parts of the brain were lit up the most. It turns out that the conscious feeling of where one’s body is stems from our feeling of ownership of our body.
It all points to the amazing power of our brain. But there is so much yet to know. Scientists are aware that even though they can measure which parts of the brain light up, they still don’t know what exactly is going on in the brain while people are experiencing this.
Is our brain simply playing tricks with us, or is there something more to it?
Read THE DREAM DILEMMA
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