What are dreams?

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What are dreams?

Unread postby Influx » Tue May 31, 2011 4:10 pm

Can we gain insight into the workings of our brain, our mind, by understanding our dreams? What new knowledge would we gain if we, as a whole, understood the dreaming process. I am not interested in the mystic interpretation of the subject matter of our dreams, but, by, how we dream. The biological process by which the brain constructs a virtual reality in our heads is far more interesting and intriguing the the stuff we dream.

If you have on explanation of how we dream, I would like to hear it, er...read it, so go head and post it. However lets refrain from posting our dreams and their interpretations, unless, and that is a big unless, the dreams serve to illustrate a certain aspect of the dreaming process.

Disclaimer, I am not an expert in this field, and have not read much on the subject. Most of the books that I have seen at the local bookstore deal with the interpretation of dreams and not the explanation of the dreaming process, which I am interested in.

Since I have no education in neurobiology, psychological science, or whatever the appropriate field may be applicable to the understanding of the neurological process of dreams, I have simple studied my own dreams in hopes of glimpsing some knowledge of how the dreams are created and function.

What follows might be complete junk, but I think these are unique discoveries that I have made. I have not yet researched the subject matter in any detail, especially of how it might pertain to my ideas if at all.

I call the way we dream, modes, I have identified several modes, now bear with me, this all might be common knowledge, but to me, it took a great deal of time to understand these “modes” of dreaming.

These dreaming modes deal with the dreamers vantage point within the virtual reality.

So here are the modes.

GODS VISION. MODE #1

This mode of dreaming is the most confusing of all the modes, and dreams dreamt this way are difficult to remember, if at all. The dreamer experiences the virtual reality from all the perspectives including the all powerful god vision. In actuality the dreamer is omnipresent in the virtual reality construct of his/her dream world.

The dreamer is not only omnipresent, but experiences the dream from the point of view of all characters present, at the same time. You are then, in essence, are split into a number of characters in your dream, and experience that dream from these characters viewpoint. All these viewpoints cross and scramble within our dream mind, resulting in a massive mess that is impossible to understand and remember in a waking state.

It is important to note the amount of independent autonomous characters that are present in your dreams.

That is, how many people are there in your dream, dogs, cats and so on. Also note the characters attributes, their color, the level of their resolution, do they actually speak, how faithfully are these characters reproduced in your virtual reality. Is your virtual reality vague or high definition, even if the actual virtual reality construct itself is high resolution, the resolution of the characters that populate the construct may vary widely, and randomly.

BIRDS EYE VIEW. MODE #2

This dreaming mode is similar to mode one, except the dreamer is not omnipresent, but is rather a disembodied spirit floating over the virtual reality dream construct. The dreamer may or may not see and observe the characters from different angles and times, the dreamer may be, at times, able to telepathically hear the characters speak. The dreamer may, for a brief time, possess, that is become one of the characters, then move on.

Upon awaking, the difficulty of understanding the dream arise out of the problem of assumption, the dreamer assumes that the characters experienced in the dream where all him/her.

Once you learn to identify which mode the dream was, you should learn to see these character “transfers” in your dream.

SINGLE VIEW. MODE #3

This is a dreaming mode where everything the dreamer experiences is from a single characters viewpoint. This may or may not be the dreamer. Hence the mode#4.

NOT YOURSELF. MODE#4

This is a dream that has nothing to do with you. You are simple along for a ride in someone body, in a strange city doing strange things. You may even be of the opposite sex and not even know it, different levels of lucidity may be present. The dreamer may have a limited amount of control, if so, try to look in a mirror!

In trying to understand these dreams, the problem arises, again, out of the dreamer assuming the dream is about the dreamer. These types of dreams are usually, in color, with full blown physics in effect, that is, as real as the dreams get. If you find yourself in such a vivid dream, where, for example, you are a robber in New York City, but you live in Australia and have never been to NYC, try to look in a mirror. Or look for any clues as to who you are.

PROPHETS VIEW. MODE#5

This dream mode is just like mode#2, except the dreamer remains a disembodied spirit throughout the dream and observes events, a story, or stories. Some people believe these types of dreams are prophesies, I do not. These types of dreams account for all the out of body experiences, when self-induced, or occur under altered states of mind.

MULTI MODE. MODE#6.

This mode is as the name suggests, a combination of all the modes that I have so far identified. Frequently the dreams take the form of single view mode with a character or several characters. Or sometimes the dream is single mode mixed in with mode#5, or prophets view. In this case, the single mode character may know the future, or what is coming, within the dream of course.

In this case, it seems like the virtual reality program “leaks” into the dreamers mind enabling the dreamer to see the simulation ahead of time.

In addition to these modes, the dreams may be mixed thoroughly and completely making no sense what so ever. Or dreams may switch randomly from one mode/s to other mode/s.

Other dream phenomena, that goes mostly unnoticed is telepathic communication within the dream. It has been my experience that most communication within the dream is telepathic, but is written of as speech by most dreamers. Indeed, in most cases of dream telepathy, telepathy replaces or augments speech, but most of the time telepathy replaces speech, completely. This is a very important clue to the functions of the human brain.

We, the dreamers, communicate telepathically with the characters in our dreams, because the characters simulated thought process “leaks” into our consciousness. The reason the simulated characters thought process “leaks” into our consciousness is because, both, your consciousness and the simulations consciousness use the same wetware, your brain!

So what have I personally learned from dreams?

It would appear that our brains can generate artificial consciousnesses on demand and at whim of whatever dream reality is running at the moment. These “artificial consciousnesses” inside the “dream-verse”, can live, love, hate, feel pain, be shot, be born, have sex, all without the approval and permission of the dreamer.

What is more interesting, these created characters can be, smarter, stronger, more beautiful, healthier, sexier than the dreamer. They can be evil or display the best moral behavior the dreamer can image. These artificial consciousnesses can also be nonhuman, and yet display all of the above human attributes.

So what can be learned and understood about our brain, our minds, our consciousnesses, us? From all of the above.

Well this post has turned into a long ramble on my part as it is. But if we were to carefully analyze the computational powers necessary to do all of the above, the implications would be staggering. If current computers run four, eight, or a hundred cores, in their CPUs, our brains, it seems, run millions of cores.

But, I am not qualified to comment on the computational parameters of our brain.

But, what I can say, in conclusion, is that our consciousnesses is no different than the artificial consciousnesses of the characters we find in our dreams.

Our consciousnesses is a program running on the wetware of our brain, and is just as artificial as those of the characters in the dream-verse.

Ours has a more permanent “feel” to it because of the outside stimuli we get from our senses. If our brains can create artificial consciousnesses on demand, delete, modify them and do so instantaneously without regard to the “hardware”, this would imply our consciousnesses is nothing more than a program.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Moby » Wed Jun 01, 2011 5:10 pm

Hi Influx

There are far too many things that you mention to converse about your very interesting theories.
But my brief reply would be,

i) Dreaming in all the ways you mention is perfectly normal
ii) Interpretting dreams as prophetic is not to be advised
iii) Learning about dreams from any one book, or one person will teach you their faults only
iv) If you think that Dream Psychology fascinates you, then talk with people you know.

A personal favourite author of mine is Carl Gustav Jung, because he has been useful to my own dream analysis- Jung always encouraged people to talk through their own dreams, and though it is difficult to comprehend, to self-analyse or autoanalyse themself by his very subtle guidance. The point at which a psychologist "intervenes" has been shown to be critical for the safety of the individual.
A more modern dream psychologist would advocate more group oriented analyses and workshops.

Good luck with your adventure!

P.S. Once you start to investigate what stimulates the human psyche, and develop a level of control over your own dreams by probing the collective unconscious you will be amazed by what can be learned.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby D_Archer » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:08 am

Deja vu.

Whenever i have a Deja vu i remember i had dreamt that moment before. So the dream was first and the moment in real life later. Isnt this a prophecy?

Influx, you seem to want to sepearate the dreamworld from reality by making it a virtual construct by our 'computer' brain, if you would dig deeper into the dreaming process i think you would find that there is just more to it.

Also ask, why do we dream? or what happens if we do not dream..? Function before process.

Regards,
Daniel
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby StevenJay » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:50 am

For what it's worth, the title of your post is misleading, IMO.

It appears that you're not so much interested in what dreams might actually be, as much as how they fit into your "randomness" view of physical existence. In other words, you're not really asking what dreams are, you're asking how and why they originate in, and are generated by, the biological brain - assuming that is, in fact, what is happening.

And that's a BIG assumption.

It's basically a loaded question, though; much like asking: "How does gravity alone drive the universe?"
It's all about perception.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Influx » Sat Jun 04, 2011 3:29 am

Well being 90 percent an Objectivist, I use the objectivist "toolkit", mainly rational reason. While I have railed against what currently passes for science, I am not against the scientific method itself.

I agree that dreams are effected and are the product of outside stimuli that we receive through our senses and store in our brains. However, I do not see any evidence for new age voodoo interpretation of dreams. Even some dreams.

To me dreams are nothing more that the product of our physiology, not some mystical force that defies reason, that defies what I can observe to be the rational reality.

And, dreams being such as they are, mainly the product of our own brains, then, the dreams are an excellent tool for the study of the human mind!

That was my humble point all along.

However, if you believe that consciousness is a phenomena that originates externally of the human brain, than all the above is a moot point. I however, think, all rational evidence points to the other side, that consciousness is on internal phenomena that originates as electrochemical "software" in/on human brains, the "hardware."

As such, then, dreams, mainly the characters that we dream up when we sleep, are artificial transient consciousnesses that the brain generates, or the illusion thereof.

In fact the brain seems to be, entirely geared at preventing outside interference, rather than permitting long range communication necessary for a collective consciousness.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Moby » Thu Jun 16, 2011 6:15 am

Hi Influx

I think that what you say at the beginning of your second retort is very true. And then I don't really follow.

Dreams happen to just about everyone, in very many forms and no doubt for very many reasons. Have you ever seen a young puppy dog asleep, dreaming about his day in the park, as he literally gallops over the grass before he attempts to lick your ice-cream from your hand? It is very funny. But that little puppy is dreaming. Why exactly he is dreaming is more interesting, because it conforms to no logical fright or fight imperative. The dog seems to be exercising his sub-conscious if you like (in what can only be described in an amusing and joyous way) but to what end? This question seems allied to the question you ask.

Having said that the dream itself exists, without dwelling on the minute axiomatic representation of any undiscovered biological organs that it stimulates or it is stimulated by; what is a dream for? In your initial thread you do seem to go into types of dreams in great detail. I must confess that I found it interesting, but all too much for me. I am sorry if you might have thought that I was not interested.

Where do think nightmare dreams come from, and what do you think their purpose might be?

Best Regards, MOBY


P.S. Have a look at my last reply to the thread "what produces consciousness".
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby whitenightf3 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 3:29 am

PROPHETS VIEW. MODE#5

This dream mode is just like mode#2, except the dreamer remains a disembodied spirit throughout the dream and observes events, a story, or stories. Some people believe these types of dreams are prophesies, I do not. These types of dreams account for all the out of body experiences, when self-induced, or occur under altered states of mind.


Check out British Writer and Binary Mind Theorist Anthony Peake he puts forward the hypothesis that when we have any prophetic dream or psychic experience its because we are remembering our future because most of us have lived before, so he argues for Eternal recurrence. I know from speaking with him and being a regular contributor on his forum that his work is exciting scientists.

I have done a lot of reading and research of my own in the area of consciousness and for me there is no evidence that consciousness is a epiphenomena of the brain. In fact materialist who argue for this spurious assumption are often shocked to be told that in the medical literature there are people born without brains, some of whom function normally. I am with William James and current proponent Rupert Sheldrake who both put forward the hypothesis that the brain is transmitter able to send and receive information. This model then is able to assimilate all psychic phenomena, whilst the main neuroscientific model denies that psi exist so they brush it under the carpet.
As for me personally I hold to the hypothesis of Panpsychism there is only One Mind in the Whole Universe and it is dreaming us into existence.


http://www.anthonypeake.co.uk/index.php

http://www.unisci.com/stories/20022/0516026.htm

http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/pickover ... verse.html
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby MosaicDave » Fri Jul 08, 2011 6:22 am

whitenightf3 wrote:in the medical literature there are people born without brains, some of whom function normally.

Well now... Can you provide a reference to an example of this?
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby whitenightf3 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 8:13 am

Well now... Can you provide a reference to an example of this?

Of course I can there have been many cases the most definitive is the case reported by the late Dr John Lorber formerly of Sheffield University in England the UK.

http://www.mindpowernews.com/BrainReallyNecessary.htm
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby schmidty226 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 2:47 pm

Its Useless "Another theory posits that dreams are our brain's attempt to make sense of what would otherwise be meaningless stimuli, random messages created from the arousal of the posterior segment of the brain. Others think dreams are merely the brain firing signals as it organizes the previous day's thoughts and experiences that may end up as memory. The problem with any theory about dreams is that we can't really prove or disprove any of them, and they aren't necessarily mutually exclusive. If dreams are psychologically significant, they can still be the result of random brain stimuli. Dreams are most likely a combination of theories.

There's still so much we don't know about the brain and how it operates, waking or sleeping, that we may never be able to pinpoint exactly what dreams are, and how they're meaningful or necessary for humans. But that doesn't stop science from trying. Dream studies are always among the most popular in universities and research facilities, which probably has something to do with their ubiquitous nature." Its different for each person, I could be wrong though, just wanted to share. Even if it wasn't related, but the title was "What are Dreams" so...
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Moby » Fri Jul 08, 2011 4:52 pm

Hello again Schmidty,

I wonder if this website really exists, or are we all contributors to your own nightmare?

Getting back to the point. I believe that dreams can do all of the following;

a) Mull-over and process the day's input (if we were AI then it would be equivalent to updating your Bayesian logic fields)
b) Actively remember and forget aspects of that day's learning, often with no apparent recollection of it.
c) Use what we call the collective unconscious to process and solve problems, semi-consciously
d) Warn us of impending doom (NOT forcasting the 10.30 at Chepstow Races), dreams are selfish; unless they are warning us that our selfish nature is a threat to us.
e) Remembering things that we may not have consciously "seen" during the day [subliminal advertising]
f) Recover and recooperate ourself with unfulfilled recreation; repair the body OR the mind itself,
g) Actually "dream" in an apparent fantasyland [exercising the mind]
h) Nightmarish scenarios that tend to exercise our "fight and flight" responses; weird scenarios may be confused in our collective unconscious because we are accessing memories that are not even our own experiences [genetic memory].
i) Improve your IQ.

The list seems endless doesn't it. Have you gone to sleep yet? Wake up Schmidty!Let's have a short, recurrent, insightful dream that is not over personal, and try to analyze it. If that is permitted.

Regards
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Influx » Sat Jul 09, 2011 9:51 pm

Sorry everyone for the slow responses, I have been away from the tubes for a while.

StevenJay wrote:For what it's worth, the title of your post is misleading, IMO.

It appears that you're not so much interested in what dreams might actually be, as much as how they fit into your "randomness" view of physical existence. In other words, you're not really asking what dreams are, you're asking how and why they originate in, and are generated by, the biological brain - assuming that is, in fact, what is happening.


Well I was asking the thread what dreams are, I also gave my opinion at the same time. But for all people who believe that dreams are more than the product of our brains, well, that's just it, it's all personal belief. There is no evidence, that was arrived at empirically, that points otherwise. Whatsoever! Its a safe logical assumption, based on the lack of evidence for new age interpretation of dreams, that dreams are a biological phenomena. There is no bias in my attempt at understanding.

If you can provide me with a single reproducible experiment that points otherwise, I would reevaluate my stance. After all, I believe in God, but in light of science, I have to admit how absurd and irrational my belief is. I embrace this. Replace God, with any new age belief system, and it is the same thing. With no shred of evidence to support their ideas people still believe in them, and will continue believing even when challenged with evidence against their belief.

What is more amazing is people will believe something is real even if there is absolutely no evidence for it. I know I am one of those.

Moby wrote:Dreams happen to just about everyone, in very many forms and no doubt for very many reasons. Have you ever seen a young puppy dog asleep, dreaming about his day in the park, as he literally gallops over the grass before he attempts to lick your ice-cream from your hand?


Hi Moby, I never said that dreams are part of higher sentience, what ever that might be. The fact that animals with lower sentience dream, that is a strong indicator that dreams are a pure biological phenomena of the brain.

whitenightf3 wrote:I have done a lot of reading and research of my own in the area of consciousness and for me there is no evidence that consciousness is a epiphenomena of the brain.


First we need to have a working definition of what consciousness is, to make such a bold claim. I make the claim that consciousness is in fact simple( ok, maybe not simple) the software of our brains. My "evidence" for the claim is that during dreaming, our brains can seemingly, magically create a perfect simulacra of a human being. It stands to reason that if my brain can create and destroy hundreds of such beings in the course of the night, why is my consciousness any diffrent?

whitenightf3 wrote:Check out British Writer and Binary Mind Theorist Anthony Peake he puts forward the hypothesis that when we have any prophetic dream or psychic experience its because we are remembering our future because most of us have lived before, so he argues for Eternal recurrence.


Well this is a moot point to me, I approach reality holistically. I mean if one believes in time travel then all bets are of. I happen to define reality by what I can observe and understand, so no time travel for me!

whitenightf3 wrote:In fact materialist who argue for this spurious assumption are often shocked to be told that in the medical literature there are people born without brains, some of whom function normally.


I am quite aware of this anomaly, but it in no way invalidates neurological science. There are millions of people who have, unfortunately, suffered brain injures with devastatingly crippling results.

whitenightf3 wrote: I am with William James and current proponent Rupert Sheldrake who both put forward the hypothesis that the brain is transmitter able to send and receive information.


Transmit to where? Receive from where? All these are baseless opinions, ideas and hopes, with no reproducible, testable hypotheses or theories in existence.

On the other hand, the fact that some people are born with a majority of their brain gone, it can not be used to prove anything. After all, if a remove I large chunk of my radio, will it not work?
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby Irishslimz » Sun Jul 10, 2011 12:45 am

Funny, I've been having some weird dreams these past three days. As I understad the brain takes in information and stores it via "emotionally". Meaning that the brain has these protiens named peptides (I probably misspelled it) that release into your brain to remember things. My speculation is that my dreams are a bizarre manifest of what went on in my previous day, or something that has been bothering me. If im honest to myself its easier to interpret what I went through during my dream the next morning. I'd feel silly explaining on a forum my dreams to eveyone, but it seems to work for me to gain peace of mind.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby whitenightf3 » Sun Jul 10, 2011 4:08 am

Transmit to where? Receive from where? All these are baseless opinions, ideas and hopes, with no reproducible, testable hypotheses or theories in existence.


From the fields of consciousness that are all around us, its comparable to a fish in the ocean. The fish is made out of water, swims in the water but is oblivious to the water.
You claim this is not testable but it is and Scientists are putting the hypothesis to the test. You don't believe that they formulate hypothesis then leave it there do you?

The fact is after 300 years of Neuroscience they are no nearer today than they were on day one of proving that consciousness arises in the brain. This is basically an attempt to hold up a materialistic ideology and its failing.
The hypothesis that the brain is a transmitter means that all psi phenomena then become explainable, yet, materialist cannot explain it, so they deny it exist. Despite hundred of thousands of trials with the result that the scientists involved know its not due to chance. Here is one American physicist explaining his research funded by the CIA no less:

Our research proves that our minds, in some way, can reach out into the environment,
either to others or to distant places. So right there you have empirical evidence.
Starting from that alone suggest that there is a shift, either emerging or yet needed.
But I think it’s emerging. More and more people are coming to understand the idea of
interconnectivity, but there’s a responsibility here too. If we’re interconnected, then
we have to be responsible for things, either our thoughts or the way we relate to the
environment and others. So it has a major impact on what might becoming in the
future.
Dr Dale E. Graff Experimental physicist


On the other hand, the fact that some people are born with a majority of their brain gone, it can not be used to prove anything. After all, if a remove I large chunk of my radio, will it not work


No you don't understand what the neurologist are saying in these cases. There is no brain there at all, not that parts are missing here is what the doctor said in one case involving a little boy I will underline the key point for you:

Hydrancephaly is very common - we see several case a year at our university hospital -
but there's a tremendous difference between having a regional area of brain
maldevelopment, and having a condition called extreme hydrancephaly, where there is
NO DEFINABLE residual brain tissue.
Dr Robert Leshner who is Professor of peadiatric neurology at the Medical
College Virginia US.


As for Peake and his binary mind theory he is talking about split personality on the one hand and on the other claims we keep coming back to live the same life over and over ad infinitum.
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Re: What are dreams?

Unread postby whitenightf3 » Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:36 am

Stan Grof on the Brain and Consciousness

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GVE_6o31MM
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