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NerdyKeith's avatar

Do you have a philosophical point of view on “dreams” and dream interpretation?

Asked by NerdyKeith (5489points) March 13th, 2016 from iPhone

Do you think there is a deep meaning hidden in the subconscious of your mind within our dreams or are they simply random collections of thoughts and images of our brain being processed during our sleeping hours?

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11 Answers

thorninmud's avatar

Dreams seem, for the most part, to be the mind’s way of working through unresolved situations. If there are things that we don’t quite have a handle on – some new circumstance that we’re facing or some old circumstance that hasn’t reached closure, or some perennial source of anxiety – then the brain runs these “virtual reality” simulations as a way of trying out coping strategies.

I remember seeing results of a study in which subjects spent a brief time on an arcade-style skiing simulator, then were sent to bed. Brain scans revealed that they spent their dreams mostly rehearsing the ski simulator moves. The next day, their performance on the simulator was markedly improved.

That’s what we also do with the other kinds of challenges we face: relationships, work/school issues, social stigmas, etc.

ibstubro's avatar

I don’t think dreams can be “interpreted” in any standardized way.

However, my personal best insights of the day come to me in the morning when I relax in a hot shower, so I know my subconscious has been working things out when I sleep.
I can certainly see how people might get those same insights in ‘real time’, manifested as dreams while they sleep.

Dreams don’t seem to have a lot of import for me, but I’m not discounting the idea that they might for other people.

Mimishu1995's avatar

No, but dreams can sometimes be used to generate useful ideas. Dreams can sometimes give a lot of good ideas that you can’t brainstorm during waking state. At least that’s what’s working to me, who often rely on dreams for ideas.

filmfann's avatar

I think dream interpretation is ridiculous. If you want to get insight into the future, it’s much better to read tea leaves.

zenvelo's avatar

Dream interpretation is a way of finding out what one thinks or feels is meaningful or important at this time in one’s life, as you apply your first impression on what it means.

Beyond that, dreams don’t mean anything.

Coloma's avatar

I once dreamed I blew my nose and a Scorpion came out. Analyze THAT! lol

Yep, I agree with @thorninmud and @zenvelo Our subconscious mind has a way of discharging repressed and unresolved issues and projecting them into our dreams along with just a lot of random nonsense. I can say as well that while not a believer in psychic powers I did, once, have a dream that culminated in manifesting in real life. Very strange. I dreamed a helicopter crashed in the ocean and my now ex husband who was a navy guy way back when told me they had a helicopter crash taking off from the flight deck of their ship the next day!

THAT was uncanny and I cannot offer any explanation.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Um, I often resolve things in my sleep. Anyway, I go to sleep working on a problem, and wake up with the solution fully formed.

Of course dreams can be interpreted to a certain extent. Dreams reflect your frame of mind. You may be repressing certain feelings, and they’ll come out in your dreams.

I don’t think there is any thing mystical about them, though. Sleeping is just a regenerating process. I find the fact that we have to sleep pretty fascinating.

flutherother's avatar

It seems odd that we are so certain that the world makes sense that we spend all our waking lives trying to understand it and yet we assume that what our own minds tell us at night is pure gibberish that means nothing.

ibstubro's avatar

I think our minds do their best work at night, @flutherother, when the sensory input is at a minimum.

I think it’s highly possible that people have dreams that reveal important insights and information to them. I think it’s less likely that our minds are simultaneously working out problems and coding them into dream language. Even less likely that there is a standardized human dream code – like stenography – that can be interpreted universally.

Now that I glance up, that’s to @Dutchess_III, too, as our previous answers were nearly identical.

Adagio's avatar

On a couple of occasions dreams gave me great insight into situations that were happening in my life at the time. They didn’t require interpretation, I was able to see things clearly for myself, they simply jumped out at me. Very helpful.

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