Information

Do dreams repeat/continue? Or is it just a perception that a dream repeated?

Do dreams repeat/continue? Or is it just a perception that a dream repeated?

During lucid dreaming, we sometimes feel that it is a repetition of (or in someway related to) a previous dream, but when we wake up, we can't recollect the first instance of such a dream. Why is this so?


Disclaimer: My answer is about recurrent dreams. I don't have any immediate sources to consult on the continuation part (and there are less references to it in literature), but I'd be very surprised if it is any different.

Theories

Firstly, there are many of theories that support the notion of recurring dreams. I know not of a single one that (explicitly or even reasonably implicitly) rejects such thing.

On cognitive perception

Secondly, you talk about perception, which in cognitive terms equates conscious access (rather than sensing in everyday language). So if you can (consciously) perceive it, it must be a genuine mental process that made it available (with the sole exception below).

Subjective reports = objective measurements

Thirdly, recurring dreams have been reported and studied for decades (in your case I'd probably start with [1]). Most of dream science is natively based on subjective reports. But recently, scientists have shown that monitored brain activity is in agreement with, and can even predict, those subjective reports [2].

So we really have all reasons to believe that what we perceive as a dream is what we actually dream.

Possible exception?

The one exception for this, and it is my own informed suspicion, is that we may still have a Déjà vu (déjâ rêvé, in the question context) while dreaming - so it may be a false sensation after all. It is the same informed suspicion that tells me that if this happens at all, it should be extremely rare.

Sleep's low retention

As for the latter part of your question:

we can't recollect the first instance of such a dream. Why is this so?

If one is to make gross simplification, during sleep:

  • Your long-term memory is 'not available' to remember stuff.
  • Your short-term memory is even more volatile than it is while you're awake (there isn't central-executive process to exercise retention).

For the same reason, we often remember a dream just after waking up, but unless salient we fail to recall it shortly after.


[1] Zadra, Antonio, and D. C. Donderi. Nightmares and bad dreams: their prevalence and relationship to well-being. Journal of abnormal psychology 109.2 (2000): 273.

[2] Horikawa, Tomoyasu, et al. Neural decoding of visual imagery during sleep. Science 340.6132 (2013): 639-642.


Dream Sanctuary: the Role of Recurring Settings in Dreams

My previous article regarding dreams and how they’ve influenced my life started the same way I’d like to start this one: It has been an age-old debate as to what exactly dreams are.

Many questions have arisen on the topic, and dreams are filled with so much speculative history that it has become a concept of wondrous intrigue. Throughout documented time, dreams have been revered, feared, judged, and interpreted.

Entire careers have been created for the purpose of understanding dreams, and entire lives have been spent driven toward answering the question: what are dreams and how can they help us?


1. The End of the World As We Know It

"Mine are often apocalyptic, and I can never reach my loved ones because there's always something wrong with the phone. Either the numbers are muddled, or the device is broken, and so amid the drowning planes and fireball Earth times, I can't get to my mom. (I'm an only child and check in with her daily since she and my dad are the only family I have in the States.) The majority, including the catastrophes, also take place in some iteration of my childhood home."

Lauri says: End of the world dreams are fairly common because they are usually connected to some big changes going on in your personal world. You'll find you will get these dreams when a major portion of your world is ending or changing such as moving out of town, getting a new job, breaking up, quitting smoking, etc. It's a rather dramatic way our inner mind bids farewell to our old world so we can better embrace the way our new world is coming together (what can I say, our dreams are big drama queens!) Your inability to use your phone is likely symbolic of your inability to either communicate your concerns, or it could be that there are certain things you simply can't communicate to your parents because it is too personal, or because you know, deep down, you need to handle it on your own. even though we all get those "I want my Mommy" moments.


Being Chased in a Dream: What Does It Mean?

Most dreamers are reporting being chased as the number one theme associated with their recurring dream. Some report having the exact same dream over and over again while others report having different dreams each night but with a common theme (e.g. of being chased or pursued by something).

We have learned that unlocking the meaning of our recurring dream and understanding how it may relate to something unresolved in our lives can help us move on from this dream. So, what could a dream of being chased mean?

We should always consider the literal meaning. Sometimes this is overlooked yet is the best fit. For example, I once reviewed a chase dream and the dreamer admitted to being pursued by a potential attacker down an alley a few years prior. Sometimes, a chase dream reflects a memory or a general fear of experiencing the actual situation in the dream.

Being chased can often relate to something the dreamer is attempting to avoid. If it is a recurring dream, then it is not likely something you are successfully avoiding. This could relate to an emotion, a situation, an insecurity, etc.

If you are the one doing the chasing in the dream, perhaps you are pursuing something or attempting to capture something in life (e.g. a relationship, a goal, a feeling, an accomplishment, etc.). Feelings and urges of aggression should be explored. The feelings we express the least in our waking lives are usually the subject of our recurring dreams.

Chasing can be rather symbolic and we use this word in many contexts in our daily lives. A review of some common idioms can give us a dream interpretation breakthrough:

  1. A wild goose chase: A long search for something that is hard to find—or may not even exist.
  2. Chasing your own tail: Relates to how a dog can run around and around chasing his tail. This relates to going in circles and not making progress.
  3. Ambulance chaser: This is an insult directed at lawyers and referring to them as someone who seeks out crisis only to profit from it.
  4. Chase rainbows: To chase or pursue something that is unrealistic.
  5. Paper chase: A task that involves a lot of paperwork and documents.
  6. Chase the dragon: This is a slang term related to smoking drugs/illegal substances. Are you seeking a high in some area of your life?
  7. Chasing a high: Also related to drugs/alcohol and relates to someone attempting to find a way to replicate a pleasant sensation that has passed—usually in vain.

If you are enjoying this chase, perhaps this relates to your romantic pursuits and dynamics. Do you enjoy the chase? Do you enjoy being chased? Are you enjoying pursuing a relationship more than the actual relationship?

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


How Dreams Work

The science of dreams is obviously not a clear-cut one. While many believe our dreams mean something, there are also many who don't. But what about dreams that have foretold future events? Has this simply been coincidence? Below are some examples of dreams that have reportedly done just that.

  • In "Lucid Dreaming," Stephen LaBerge reports that a man took his small son camping near a lake in a small valley near their home. He took the son to the water's edge to take a bath but realized he had forgotten the soap. He left the boy standing by the edge of the water and saw him picking up pebbles and throwing them into the water. When he returned with the soap, his son was lying face down in the water, dead. The man awoke and immediately realized this was only a dream. A while after that, some friends invited him and his son to go camping. Although it didn't occur to him immediately, the setting was similar to the setting he had seen in his dream. At one point during the camping trip, he took his son to the lake to take a bath but realized he had forgotten the soap. He sat the boy down and was leaving to get the soap when he saw the boy reach down and pick up pebbles to throw into the water. His dream immediately jumped into his head, and he snatched the boy up and took him with him.
  • There is an investment group made up of people who have precognitive dreams about stocks. Phenomena Magazine: Precognitive Stock Market Dreamers (November 1, 2004) reports that Dr. Arthur Bernard, a psychologist who teaches dreamwork and a member of the group, had a very successful experience. He had a recurring dream about an obscure biotech stock called ICOS. In the dream, he saw the stock suddenly explode in value. Because of the intensity of the dream, he felt sure that this dream was precognitive. He bought about 40,000 shares of ICOS at $4 per share. He sold his shares in 1998 at $28 each, amounting to an approximate $1.6 million profit.
  • Science Frontiers Online: Precognitive Dreams (Nov-Dec 1998) reports that M.S. Stowell, in her doctoral dissertation, interviewed several people who claimed to have precognitive dreams. Of 51 presumed precognitive dreams, Stowell was able to prove that 37 had indeed come true. One report from a woman named Elizabeth told of a dream about a plane crashing on a highway near an overpass. Elizabeth was driving her car on that highway at the time and could see that the plane was going to crash there as she drove under the overpass. In her dream, she just escaped the plane. Within a few weeks, a plane crashed on the highway she had dreamt about.

Ongoing Dream Research and Therapy

Research in various areas of dreaming is ongoing, particularly in the areas of REM sleep and lucidity. One study in lucid dreaming involves trying to get the dreamer to communicate with observers while he or she is dreaming. Stephen LaBerge, who is at the forefront of lucid dreaming research, has successfully achieved communication through eye movements, but of course this type of communication is very limited. His ongoing work involves dreamers wearing a glove that incorporates movement sensors to record hand movements during sleep. By using sign language, they hope be able to get reports of dreams as they are occurring.

One day, perhaps we'll all be able to control our dreams or even share our dreams with others while we sleep.

For more information on dreams and related topics, check out the links below.


How dreaming about the same person over and over again does mean something

Dreams can be anything from immensely satisfying, to bittersweet right through to absolutely terrifying - and everything else in between.

Perhaps the most perplexing of all dream models are recurring dreams - in particular if they always feature the same person, over and over again.

Maybe you&aposre happy to see this person. Or perhaps they&aposre your sworn nemesis. Either way, their repeat dream-time cameos DO mean something, apparently.

While it&aposs not uncommon to have recurring dreams (two thirds of us experience them) the reasons behind them are, psychologically, interesting.

What does it all mean?

Luckily, the purpose behind someone cropping up repeatedly in your dreams isn&apost as literal as you many think it is. I.e. they&aposre not a sign you&aposll be spending the rest of your life with them (sorry).

"The model of the mind is very true to the idea of a computer," clinical psychologist Dr John Mayer told Elite Daily .

"When we go to sleep, that little computer will keep churning. It doesn&apost just turn off and stop. We have a perception that we&aposre blank when we sleep - but [the brain] keeps going."

Dr Mayer adds we should not take someone cropping up in our dreams repeatedly in a literal way. That person is instead symbolising a certain stress or anxiety we are going through.

"The dreams are usually not exactly the same each time, but the recurring theme is usually something in your head that is somehow unresolved. It just keeps repeating over and over again in that computer.


Back at School

Even if you graduated 10, 20, even 50 years ago, your dreaming mind keeps pulling you back into chemistry class wearing nothing but your Nikes or roaming the halls trying to find your locker. It’s a very aggravating dream.

The reason school is such a popular dream locale is because the dynamics of the school setting continue on into your job or career and also into your social life. School is where you first learn the importance of being on time and meeting deadlines. It is where you learn how to prepare and “do your homework.” It is where you learn how to deal with scrutiny, how to move on up the ladder, and also how to fit in. Basically, it’s where you learn all your basic job skills and social skills. School dreams are most often connected to your work life and slightly less often connected to your social life.

When you find yourself back in those cinder-block halls at night, you need to ask yourself what is going on at work or in your career that reminds you of what went on in your dream. If you’re late for class in your dream, are you worried about a deadline at work? If you can’t find your class or your locker, are you not feeling like you are where you would like to be in your job or career? If you’re having to repeat your senior year all over again, even though you know you already graduated years ago, ask yourself if you are having to prove yourself at work or with a new boss.

The Lesson: There is probably some unpreparedness, uncertainty or even vulnerability with your job or career that needs to be addressed. There is a lesson to be learned here, so sit up straight and pay attention! Your dreaming mind is placing you back in school because it really wants you to succeed in real life.


Table of contents

Depending on whether you are primarily a visual (image-oriented), auditory (sound-oriented), or kinesthetic (physically-oriented) person (you can take a test here), your hypnogogic experience will vary.

Here are common ways hypnagogia is experienced:

  • Images &ndash e.g. monochromatic or colorful, static or moving, flat or three-dimensional &ndash usually the images are fleeting but sometimes they form entire dream-like scenes
  • Sounds &ndash may be loud or quiet and involve hearing music, voices, snatches of conversation, rain, wind, white noise, repetitive words, having one&rsquos name called, etc.
  • Repetitive actions &ndash known as the &ldquoTetris effect,&rdquo when a person has spent a long time doing something repetitive (such as working, playing chess, exercising, reading) they may find themselves doing the same thing as they fall into the hypnagogic state
  • Physical sensations &ndash tastes, scents, textures, and sensations of coldness and heat may be experienced during hypnagogia, as well as feelings of floating, falling, leaving one&rsquos body or having one&rsquos body change shape
  • Mental processes &ndash at the edge of sleep thoughts begin to take a fluid and free-associative quality in which they morph and evolve in unusual, abstract, and innovative ways, uninfluenced by the ego
  • Sleep paralysis &ndash the temporary inability to move may, in some occurrences, accompany hypnagogia, however while this state may be alarming, it is harmless

It is also possible (and common) to experience multiple forms of hypnagogia. For example, you might visually enter a memory from the day that transforms before your eyes into an array of physical sensations and sounds. The combinations are limitless.


Recurring nightmares

Recurring nightmares can happen for various reasons. Hey can often be representations of traumas we experienced in early childhood or traumatic experiences that happened to us later on in life.

When they keep appearing in our dreams, we can start to lose desire to sleep and cause problems in our real life.

Many people experienced recurring nightmares in their life. An event we are dreaming of could be a representation of a real life event or a representation of something imaginary, like monsters.

When events we are dreaming of have a more realistic feeling or when they are linked to something we experienced, the reason behind their appearance might be in this dream.

If we keep dreaming about an accident we were in, then we were probably affected by this event more than we think.

Best way to deal with these recurring dreams is to visit a psychologist or talk to someone who knows how to keep our mind of this traumatic event.

If you haven’t experienced what you keep dreaming about, then you might be receiving a warning for the future. This might be something you are afraid of and you want to avoid it at all costs. Dreams like this don’t have to be premonitions of something that will happen, but be careful just in case.

If nightmares that keep occurring are imaginary and unrealistic, then they could be a result of traumatic experiences in our life.

Something is definitely bothering you and you should talk to someone who can help you deal with emotions that are hidden deep inside your consciousness.


To dream, perhaps to learn

A 2010 Harvard study suggested that dreaming may reactivate and reorganize recently learned material, improving memory and boosting performance. The subjects were 99 healthy college students who agreed to avoid alcohol, caffeine, and drugs for at least 24 hours prior to the experiment. All the volunteers demonstrated normal sleep patterns before enrolling in the study.

Each of the subjects spent an hour learning how to navigate through a complex three-dimensional maze-like puzzle. After the training period, half of the students were allowed to nap for 90 minutes, while the others read or relaxed. Following a lunch break, all the volunteers tackled the virtual maze again. The only students whose performance substantially improved were the few who dreamed about the maze during their naps. Although the dreams didn't actually depict solutions to the puzzle, the researchers believe they show how the dreaming brain can reorganize and consolidate memories, resulting in better performance on learned tasks. And all the amazing dreams occurred early in NREM sleep.


Being Chased in a Dream: What Does It Mean?

Most dreamers are reporting being chased as the number one theme associated with their recurring dream. Some report having the exact same dream over and over again while others report having different dreams each night but with a common theme (e.g. of being chased or pursued by something).

We have learned that unlocking the meaning of our recurring dream and understanding how it may relate to something unresolved in our lives can help us move on from this dream. So, what could a dream of being chased mean?

We should always consider the literal meaning. Sometimes this is overlooked yet is the best fit. For example, I once reviewed a chase dream and the dreamer admitted to being pursued by a potential attacker down an alley a few years prior. Sometimes, a chase dream reflects a memory or a general fear of experiencing the actual situation in the dream.

Being chased can often relate to something the dreamer is attempting to avoid. If it is a recurring dream, then it is not likely something you are successfully avoiding. This could relate to an emotion, a situation, an insecurity, etc.

If you are the one doing the chasing in the dream, perhaps you are pursuing something or attempting to capture something in life (e.g. a relationship, a goal, a feeling, an accomplishment, etc.). Feelings and urges of aggression should be explored. The feelings we express the least in our waking lives are usually the subject of our recurring dreams.

Chasing can be rather symbolic and we use this word in many contexts in our daily lives. A review of some common idioms can give us a dream interpretation breakthrough:

  1. A wild goose chase: A long search for something that is hard to find—or may not even exist.
  2. Chasing your own tail: Relates to how a dog can run around and around chasing his tail. This relates to going in circles and not making progress.
  3. Ambulance chaser: This is an insult directed at lawyers and referring to them as someone who seeks out crisis only to profit from it.
  4. Chase rainbows: To chase or pursue something that is unrealistic.
  5. Paper chase: A task that involves a lot of paperwork and documents.
  6. Chase the dragon: This is a slang term related to smoking drugs/illegal substances. Are you seeking a high in some area of your life?
  7. Chasing a high: Also related to drugs/alcohol and relates to someone attempting to find a way to replicate a pleasant sensation that has passed—usually in vain.

If you are enjoying this chase, perhaps this relates to your romantic pursuits and dynamics. Do you enjoy the chase? Do you enjoy being chased? Are you enjoying pursuing a relationship more than the actual relationship?

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


Back at School

Even if you graduated 10, 20, even 50 years ago, your dreaming mind keeps pulling you back into chemistry class wearing nothing but your Nikes or roaming the halls trying to find your locker. It’s a very aggravating dream.

The reason school is such a popular dream locale is because the dynamics of the school setting continue on into your job or career and also into your social life. School is where you first learn the importance of being on time and meeting deadlines. It is where you learn how to prepare and “do your homework.” It is where you learn how to deal with scrutiny, how to move on up the ladder, and also how to fit in. Basically, it’s where you learn all your basic job skills and social skills. School dreams are most often connected to your work life and slightly less often connected to your social life.

When you find yourself back in those cinder-block halls at night, you need to ask yourself what is going on at work or in your career that reminds you of what went on in your dream. If you’re late for class in your dream, are you worried about a deadline at work? If you can’t find your class or your locker, are you not feeling like you are where you would like to be in your job or career? If you’re having to repeat your senior year all over again, even though you know you already graduated years ago, ask yourself if you are having to prove yourself at work or with a new boss.

The Lesson: There is probably some unpreparedness, uncertainty or even vulnerability with your job or career that needs to be addressed. There is a lesson to be learned here, so sit up straight and pay attention! Your dreaming mind is placing you back in school because it really wants you to succeed in real life.


Table of contents

Depending on whether you are primarily a visual (image-oriented), auditory (sound-oriented), or kinesthetic (physically-oriented) person (you can take a test here), your hypnogogic experience will vary.

Here are common ways hypnagogia is experienced:

  • Images &ndash e.g. monochromatic or colorful, static or moving, flat or three-dimensional &ndash usually the images are fleeting but sometimes they form entire dream-like scenes
  • Sounds &ndash may be loud or quiet and involve hearing music, voices, snatches of conversation, rain, wind, white noise, repetitive words, having one&rsquos name called, etc.
  • Repetitive actions &ndash known as the &ldquoTetris effect,&rdquo when a person has spent a long time doing something repetitive (such as working, playing chess, exercising, reading) they may find themselves doing the same thing as they fall into the hypnagogic state
  • Physical sensations &ndash tastes, scents, textures, and sensations of coldness and heat may be experienced during hypnagogia, as well as feelings of floating, falling, leaving one&rsquos body or having one&rsquos body change shape
  • Mental processes &ndash at the edge of sleep thoughts begin to take a fluid and free-associative quality in which they morph and evolve in unusual, abstract, and innovative ways, uninfluenced by the ego
  • Sleep paralysis &ndash the temporary inability to move may, in some occurrences, accompany hypnagogia, however while this state may be alarming, it is harmless

It is also possible (and common) to experience multiple forms of hypnagogia. For example, you might visually enter a memory from the day that transforms before your eyes into an array of physical sensations and sounds. The combinations are limitless.


Recurring nightmares

Recurring nightmares can happen for various reasons. Hey can often be representations of traumas we experienced in early childhood or traumatic experiences that happened to us later on in life.

When they keep appearing in our dreams, we can start to lose desire to sleep and cause problems in our real life.

Many people experienced recurring nightmares in their life. An event we are dreaming of could be a representation of a real life event or a representation of something imaginary, like monsters.

When events we are dreaming of have a more realistic feeling or when they are linked to something we experienced, the reason behind their appearance might be in this dream.

If we keep dreaming about an accident we were in, then we were probably affected by this event more than we think.

Best way to deal with these recurring dreams is to visit a psychologist or talk to someone who knows how to keep our mind of this traumatic event.

If you haven’t experienced what you keep dreaming about, then you might be receiving a warning for the future. This might be something you are afraid of and you want to avoid it at all costs. Dreams like this don’t have to be premonitions of something that will happen, but be careful just in case.

If nightmares that keep occurring are imaginary and unrealistic, then they could be a result of traumatic experiences in our life.

Something is definitely bothering you and you should talk to someone who can help you deal with emotions that are hidden deep inside your consciousness.


Dream Sanctuary: the Role of Recurring Settings in Dreams

My previous article regarding dreams and how they’ve influenced my life started the same way I’d like to start this one: It has been an age-old debate as to what exactly dreams are.

Many questions have arisen on the topic, and dreams are filled with so much speculative history that it has become a concept of wondrous intrigue. Throughout documented time, dreams have been revered, feared, judged, and interpreted.

Entire careers have been created for the purpose of understanding dreams, and entire lives have been spent driven toward answering the question: what are dreams and how can they help us?


1. The End of the World As We Know It

"Mine are often apocalyptic, and I can never reach my loved ones because there's always something wrong with the phone. Either the numbers are muddled, or the device is broken, and so amid the drowning planes and fireball Earth times, I can't get to my mom. (I'm an only child and check in with her daily since she and my dad are the only family I have in the States.) The majority, including the catastrophes, also take place in some iteration of my childhood home."

Lauri says: End of the world dreams are fairly common because they are usually connected to some big changes going on in your personal world. You'll find you will get these dreams when a major portion of your world is ending or changing such as moving out of town, getting a new job, breaking up, quitting smoking, etc. It's a rather dramatic way our inner mind bids farewell to our old world so we can better embrace the way our new world is coming together (what can I say, our dreams are big drama queens!) Your inability to use your phone is likely symbolic of your inability to either communicate your concerns, or it could be that there are certain things you simply can't communicate to your parents because it is too personal, or because you know, deep down, you need to handle it on your own. even though we all get those "I want my Mommy" moments.


How dreaming about the same person over and over again does mean something

Dreams can be anything from immensely satisfying, to bittersweet right through to absolutely terrifying - and everything else in between.

Perhaps the most perplexing of all dream models are recurring dreams - in particular if they always feature the same person, over and over again.

Maybe you&aposre happy to see this person. Or perhaps they&aposre your sworn nemesis. Either way, their repeat dream-time cameos DO mean something, apparently.

While it&aposs not uncommon to have recurring dreams (two thirds of us experience them) the reasons behind them are, psychologically, interesting.

What does it all mean?

Luckily, the purpose behind someone cropping up repeatedly in your dreams isn&apost as literal as you many think it is. I.e. they&aposre not a sign you&aposll be spending the rest of your life with them (sorry).

"The model of the mind is very true to the idea of a computer," clinical psychologist Dr John Mayer told Elite Daily .

"When we go to sleep, that little computer will keep churning. It doesn&apost just turn off and stop. We have a perception that we&aposre blank when we sleep - but [the brain] keeps going."

Dr Mayer adds we should not take someone cropping up in our dreams repeatedly in a literal way. That person is instead symbolising a certain stress or anxiety we are going through.

"The dreams are usually not exactly the same each time, but the recurring theme is usually something in your head that is somehow unresolved. It just keeps repeating over and over again in that computer.


How Dreams Work

The science of dreams is obviously not a clear-cut one. While many believe our dreams mean something, there are also many who don't. But what about dreams that have foretold future events? Has this simply been coincidence? Below are some examples of dreams that have reportedly done just that.

  • In "Lucid Dreaming," Stephen LaBerge reports that a man took his small son camping near a lake in a small valley near their home. He took the son to the water's edge to take a bath but realized he had forgotten the soap. He left the boy standing by the edge of the water and saw him picking up pebbles and throwing them into the water. When he returned with the soap, his son was lying face down in the water, dead. The man awoke and immediately realized this was only a dream. A while after that, some friends invited him and his son to go camping. Although it didn't occur to him immediately, the setting was similar to the setting he had seen in his dream. At one point during the camping trip, he took his son to the lake to take a bath but realized he had forgotten the soap. He sat the boy down and was leaving to get the soap when he saw the boy reach down and pick up pebbles to throw into the water. His dream immediately jumped into his head, and he snatched the boy up and took him with him.
  • There is an investment group made up of people who have precognitive dreams about stocks. Phenomena Magazine: Precognitive Stock Market Dreamers (November 1, 2004) reports that Dr. Arthur Bernard, a psychologist who teaches dreamwork and a member of the group, had a very successful experience. He had a recurring dream about an obscure biotech stock called ICOS. In the dream, he saw the stock suddenly explode in value. Because of the intensity of the dream, he felt sure that this dream was precognitive. He bought about 40,000 shares of ICOS at $4 per share. He sold his shares in 1998 at $28 each, amounting to an approximate $1.6 million profit.
  • Science Frontiers Online: Precognitive Dreams (Nov-Dec 1998) reports that M.S. Stowell, in her doctoral dissertation, interviewed several people who claimed to have precognitive dreams. Of 51 presumed precognitive dreams, Stowell was able to prove that 37 had indeed come true. One report from a woman named Elizabeth told of a dream about a plane crashing on a highway near an overpass. Elizabeth was driving her car on that highway at the time and could see that the plane was going to crash there as she drove under the overpass. In her dream, she just escaped the plane. Within a few weeks, a plane crashed on the highway she had dreamt about.

Ongoing Dream Research and Therapy

Research in various areas of dreaming is ongoing, particularly in the areas of REM sleep and lucidity. One study in lucid dreaming involves trying to get the dreamer to communicate with observers while he or she is dreaming. Stephen LaBerge, who is at the forefront of lucid dreaming research, has successfully achieved communication through eye movements, but of course this type of communication is very limited. His ongoing work involves dreamers wearing a glove that incorporates movement sensors to record hand movements during sleep. By using sign language, they hope be able to get reports of dreams as they are occurring.

One day, perhaps we'll all be able to control our dreams or even share our dreams with others while we sleep.

For more information on dreams and related topics, check out the links below.


To dream, perhaps to learn

A 2010 Harvard study suggested that dreaming may reactivate and reorganize recently learned material, improving memory and boosting performance. The subjects were 99 healthy college students who agreed to avoid alcohol, caffeine, and drugs for at least 24 hours prior to the experiment. All the volunteers demonstrated normal sleep patterns before enrolling in the study.

Each of the subjects spent an hour learning how to navigate through a complex three-dimensional maze-like puzzle. After the training period, half of the students were allowed to nap for 90 minutes, while the others read or relaxed. Following a lunch break, all the volunteers tackled the virtual maze again. The only students whose performance substantially improved were the few who dreamed about the maze during their naps. Although the dreams didn't actually depict solutions to the puzzle, the researchers believe they show how the dreaming brain can reorganize and consolidate memories, resulting in better performance on learned tasks. And all the amazing dreams occurred early in NREM sleep.