The Five Types of Dreams
A person daydreams for a whopping 70-120 minutes of their waking day. As with all types of dreams, you enter a kind of hypnotic trance and allow your unconscious thoughts to rise to the surface.
During daydreams, you are semi-awake. Clearly not asleep but not fully checked-in with reality, either. A daydream starts with a compelling thought, memory or fantasy, and your imagination runs away. The longer you daydream, the deeper you become immersed in your private fantasy land. It's been suggested that people who daydream a lot find it easier to lucid dream.
That's because daydreaming is like practicing lucid dreaming while you're awake - observing imagery in your mind's eye and directing the course of your fantasy. In fact, visualization is one of the tenets of lucid dreaming practice.
2. Normal Dreams
Everybody has normal dreams every single night. These dreams arise mostly out of REM sleep and are essential to our survival. Normal dreams offer insights from the unconscious mind.
These insights are based on your thoughts and experiences from the day before, sometimes memories from long ago, repressed fears and anxieties, and your strongest desires and urges. It arrives in the form of conceptual imagery - the coded language of the unconscious mind which is what makes your dreams seem so weird.
3. Lucid Dreams
Lucid dreams are the best types of dreams, hands down. They are richly immersive and you can guide them into infinite and beautiful worlds of your choosing. Lucid dreaming is the ultimate freedom.
What defines a lucid dream?
It's any dream in which, while physically asleep. Sometimes it controls lots of aspects of the dream like the locations or characters or plot. But my dreaming mind still fills in a lot of details on its own. Other times I let the dream guide me and show me whatever it wants. I'm still lucid because I can think clearly, acknowledge I'm dreaming and experience the dream in real-life intensity.
4. False Awakenings
False awakenings are a bit like that. You wake up as normal and plod into the bathroom, get dressed, eat breakfast, and maybe even get half way to work before you realize "oh my god, I'm still dreaming! False awakenings are basically very vivid types of dreams.
Like any normal dream, you assume you're awake, and you certainly don't know you're dreaming. It usually takes something quite obvious to shock you out of these types of dreams. Maybe you look in the bathroom mirror and see yourself 20 years from now. Or maybe you're driving down the road and realize there are no other cars on the road.
In the Western world, nightmares are any normal dreams with a very scary twist. In nightmares, you don't know you're dreaming. So, the unconscious mind processes everything as if it were really happening. Some nightmares can be so vivid that the sensory system is triggered and you can feel certain types of pain. It can be very unnerving.
According to dream analysis, being chased in a nightmare represents our evolutionary fear of being hunted. Children - who arguably feel more vulnerable than most adults - report this type of dream the most. Studies show that nightmares are usually caused by sickness, stress, trauma, and drugs or alcohol.
"Published by the "Catalyst"