Archive for the ‘Dream Science’ category

Dreaming in 3-D

March 12, 2015
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•Close up of a gold tipped rose and a quote I love•

Today my agency lost a woman with a heart of gold. A little under two weeks ago, all the people who care about her started planning a going away party for her. She dedicated many years to our mission and really cared about our agency. The day the invitation was emailed, I began to wonder what sort of special gift I could give my friend. For many years, she served as a sort of metaphorical glue in our agency. I am sad she had to leave.

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•Going away party for Antz on 3.12.2015•

That night I came home with Antz on my mind. When the lights went out, I laid quietly in bed thinking. All the things she has done for me and others over the years crossed my mind. I am indeed a thinker. It’s because I care. I closed my eyes and remembered all the reasons she is special to me. When I love someone, I will give my all for them… especially when they love me in return and actually show that they care.

In the late night hours, my dreams were vivid. They were 3-D. I could feel them. Those I love inspired me to dream that night. My dreams brought me the idea to create a 3-D heart out of roses. As soon as I woke up, I sketched the idea on paper. I’ve learned to keep a notebook close. Ten minutes after my eyes opened, I knew exactly what I needed to buy to bring my dream to life and I knew it would be called “Heart of Gold.” I must say…without a doubt…what I saw in my mind’s eye was birthed in the real world last night. At midnight I created one of most lovely flower arrangements in my history of floral design!  

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•Gold tipping 36 red roses•

In November of 2003, the American Psychological Association published “The Dream Canvas” (Vol.34, No.10). The article by Tori DeAngelis posed the question… “are dreams a muse to the creative?” Even though research is still being done to connect creativity and dreams, I know it is true from personal experience. I frequently dream of creating things and can often solve real world problems while I sleep.

The article notes a famous musician, an author, and an artist who all believed in this phenomenon. There are many non-artsy people who also find dreaming useful to problem solving. DeAngelis said that “research shows that fantasy-prone people may have higher dream recall than others.” Ommmm….yeah. She also said that “people who use dreams for creative purposes naturally have greater access to the dream world than others” and it’s true!

What still needs to be accounted for with regard to the connection between creativity/problem solving and dreams? I think more research needs to be done into how inspiration and emotions actually motivate these dreams. I am one of those who needs no scientific research to believe in and understand this. For me, creativity comes in dreams. It is connected to love, hope, friendship, and endless possibilities.

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•3-D Heart Floral Arrangement by Felicia•

The intellect beneath the image

July 30, 2013

Loved this post!!! She was also a poet!!!
—-Felicia

Books Are Better

Marilyn Monroe was known for her beauty and glamour, but what many observers fail to note about her is that she was an avid reader and a student of literature. Among the thousands of photos that were taken of her, many dozens portray her reading books in various settings and poses — a window into the intellect that lay beneath the image.

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Smoke and Mirrors: My First Lucid Dream

April 20, 2012

This morning it was very hard for me to get out of bed. The second I opened my eyes, I could feel an indescribable ache in my head. I couldn’t understand why I felt so horrible? In my moment of contemplation, I realized that I was smoking in my dream. I am not a smoker, but yet I was blowing smoke like my first name was Puff (yes the Magic Dragon). But it was just a dream? Wasn’t it? I laid around for awhile. I tossed, I turned, I debated calling in to work because I literally felt sick. When I finally got out of bed, I rushed over to the bottle that I felt would give me some hope for the day. I popped an 800 mg Ibuprofen, washed it down with some caffeine, and then convinced myself that the headache would disappear. By the time I darted out the door for the day, my headache was gone. I thought about it all morning… I mean how strange is it to have a headache from smoking in my dreams? I did dream about many other things, but I knew the smoke caused my head to ache. As the day progressed, I wondered… Did I ever really have a headache at all? Or was it all in my head? No pun intended! I know in my waking life any kind of smoke often causes me to get real headaches, but can it cause a headache in the dream world as well, or did last night mark my first concrete proof of a mind-body connection?

Let Me Dream- Bookplate of Anita Herriman Vedder (ca 1870-1923)- Item No. LC-DIG-ppmsca-15533- Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

The more the day went on, the more I believed that my experience was purely metapsychological. Now I know that I was likely still asleep when I believed I awoke with a headache. I know that I had the first lucid dream that I can actually recall. It was a lucid dream with something that is called a false awakening. Metapsychology is basically the psychological connection between mind and body. Many say that metapsychology is “beyond what can be studied,” but am I not studying it right now? “Meta” is derived from the Greek word for transcendence and/or going beyond something. For example… Have you ever had a dream where you were doing anything physical and then really woke up with soar muscles? Apparently I am not the only person who has experienced this type of phenomenon. There are some extreme cases out there. Some people wake up with scratches, bruises, and other serious injuries. Just look for yourself, and follow some of the subject threads available online. Since I am a woman who prefers well rounded research, I prefer to look at four things to make my own conclusion. Those four things are: my personal experience; the experiences of everyday people; scholarly approaches; and scientific studies.

In lucid dreaming, the person dreaming can control what they do in a dream. The dreams are often realistic, but are still fluid enough to be influenced by the dreamer. Maybe because I love writing and being creative, I am able to control some of the data which infiltrates my mind (to some degree)? If I was indeed having my first identifiable lucid dream, then it is highly likely that I experienced a false awakening from that dream. If this is the case then it makes total sense that I was in my own room when I opened my eyes and discovered I had a headache. During a false awakening, the dreamer almost always thinks they are awake because they are in the exact place where they originally drifted off to sleep. Some scholars would say that if I had a lucid dream last night, it would make sense that I was not even awake when I thought I woke up! I probably actually woke up just seconds before I actually got out of bed.

A Study in butter the dreaming Iolanthe- butter sculpture of sleeping woman by Caroline S. Brooks (c1878)- Item No. LC-USZ62-93747- Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

In 2007, the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association published a white paper by Peter Fonagy and Mary Target. The paper examined Theory and Psychoanalytic Thought, and was titled The Rooting of the Mind in the Body: New Links Between Attachment. Fonagy and Target studied “the relationship between psychoanalysis and attachment theory” and they described that relationship as “complex.” The scholars researched the “whole idea of the mind comprehensively expressing itself exclusively through bodily referents,” and state that this expression derives from Sigmund Freud’s studies of the “ego” and “body-ego.” According to the paper, “any separation between cognition and physical manifestations at the level of brain, bodily sensations, or actions is an artifact of the cognitivists’ computer metaphor, which implies that cognitive processes can be independent of the body, just as software exists more or less independent of hardware. In general, it is the link of brain and body that generates mind and consciousness. Emotion, mood, and motivation act in concert with cognition, primed by evolution to ensure the survival of the person as a whole.”

Dr. Donald DeGracia published his study in 1997 out of Wayne State University titled Paradigms of Consciousness During Sleep. In his study, Dr. DeGracia attempts “to conceptualize conscious sleep experiences.” His paradigm research confirms that “the most common conscious sleep experience is dreaming.” The paper goes on to say that “dreams are a form of conscious awareness during sleep, and that “when we dream, we are consciously aware of visual, auditory, tactile, kinesthetic and emotional content, as well as thought (both cognitive and metacognitive) and to lesser extents smells, taste and pain.” Hum?? Very interesting. This PhD has discovered that “in a lucid dream, the brain undergoes some kind of change that gives the dreamer metacognitive access to their waking memories. Hence, it may be that a lucid dream is a dream in which the dreamer can compare their present condition with their waking life. It is this ability to compare the dream experience to waking experience that really appears to distinguish lucid dreams from nonlucid dreams.”

The dream of Pilate's wife by Alphonse Francois (c1879)- Item No. LC-DIG-pga-01296- Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA

So here is my conclusion… I am 99.9% sure that I had my first recognizable lucid dream. Amazing… It seems that I may have been dreaming I had a headache because I was tapping into latent memories of my experiences with things that cause my head to ache! I had a headache because my mind caused my body to believe it should. I would even go as far to say that muscle memory could have been at work here. I can thank the long gone love of my life, Sigmund Freud for a few things today. Some of those things include: his beautifully sexy brain; the ability of his once lively mind to spark my contemporary mind; his amazing breakthroughs in 1895 relative to the philosophical study of the relationship between the body and the mind; and his still unmatched 1899 study on the Interpretation of Dreams.

Sources:

Theory and Psychoanalytic Thought,
The Rooting of the Mind in the Body:
New Links Between Attachment (2007)
Peter Fonagy and Mary Target
Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association

http://apa.sagepub.com

Paradigms of Consciousness During Sleep (1997)
Donald J. DeGracia, PhD
Wayne State University
www.med.wayne.edu/degracialab/metaphysics/paradigms.pdf


Mass study aims to change the world’s dreams

April 11, 2012

Super cool!!! Wonder if it will work?

A Dream Within a Dream

March 30, 2012
Digital Image of a Lucid Dream from http://blog.lib.umn.edu/

Digital Image of a Lucid Dream from http://blog.lib.umn.edu/

¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤

¤¤¤ A Dream Within a Dream

Take this kiss upon the brow
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are nor wrong, who deem;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How fewl yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
while I weep- while I weep!
O God! Can I not grasp them
with a tighter clasp? O God!
Can I not save one from the
pitiless wave? Is all that we
see or seem but a dream
within a dream?

¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤..¤¤¤

Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, Chapter 5, The Poems, Pg 768

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Lucid Dreams and the Creative Unconscious…

January 2, 2012

Right before 2011 ended, Mind Hacks released information on a new ebook. I do not have a reader, but the book is also available in PDF and HTML formats, so I would like to get a copy. In his second self-published ebook, Tom Stafford will likely propose some interesting ideas. He is a fan of lucid dreaming. In the ebook titled “Control Your Dreams,” Stafford and Cathryn Bardsley explore techniques for those interested in lucid dreams. Stafford believes that “anyone can learn to have lucid dreams.” These are the type of dreams where “you become aware you are dreaming, and can even begin to control the reality of the dream.” Of course, I wouldn’t recommend anything other than Creative Commons.

Dictionary.com defines “lucid dream” as “a dream state in which one is conscious enough to recognize that one is in the dream state and which stays in one’s memory.” The Mind Hacker post reminded me of an article I recently read in Scientific American Mind. The article was titled “Lucid Dreams Unlock Clues about Consciousness.” The author, Ursula Voss published this piece in the last month of 2011. She like many other scientists believe that “becoming aware of your sleeping self could relieve anxiety or tap the creative unconscious.” There was one section in particular that I printed and saved from her article. Maybe call it my practice sheet! 🙂

***“Am I Dreaming?
Lucid dreams cannot be willfully induced, but you can increase the likelihood that you will have one. People who practice these techniques regularly are able to have one or two lucid dreams per week.

1…Throughout each day, ask yourself repeatedly if you are awake. When this habit becomes ingrained, you may find yourself asking the question in a dream—at which point your chances of realizing you are dreaming skyrocket.

2…Make a point to look in a mirror or reread a bit of text every so often as a “reality check.” In dreams, our appearance is often altered and the written word is notoriously hard to pin down. You may carry the habit of checking for these dream signs into sleep, where they could alert you to the fact that you are dreaming.

3…Keep a dream journal by the bed and jot down the dreams you remember immediately on waking. Studies show that this practice makes you more aware of your dreams in general, and people who are more aware of their dreams are more likely to have a lucid dream.

4…Before falling asleep, focus intently on the fantasy you hope to experience in as much detail as possible. Research shows that “incubating” an idea just before bed dramatically increases the likelihood that you will dream about it. And if you suddenly notice that you are dancing with the movie star you hoped to meet, you might just realize you are having a dream and be able to take control of what happens next.”***

Lucid Dreams Unlock Clues about Consciousness
by Ursula Voss
http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/2DchDy/www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm%3Fid%3Dunlocking-the-lucid-dream

Control Your Dreams (ebook)
by Tom Stafford and Cathryn Bardsley
http://mindhacks.com/2011/12/30/control-your-dreams-ebook/

A Perfect Day for Writing…

November 5, 2011

*****The Dragon Fly is one of my symbols…
This is a beautiful sun catcher my friend Gail
gave me for my birthday.

***********

Last night I went to sleep after contemplating many things… Among those things consuming my brain waves remained the looming deadline for a 250 word sample of my writing. Next week I will participate in the 2011 Tony Hillerman Writers Conference, and there will be a flash critique event there. This is why I must complete a piece, and I wanted it to be something new. Numbers will be drawn for a reading by, and then a formal critique of our writing by accomplished authors. No pressure!

Before bed, I prepared my creative arsenal which consisted of: a Panasonic auto-stop pencil sharpener and pencils; the book Birds of the Southwest by John H. Rappole; the book Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West by Michael Moore; an article by Anselmo Arellano titled Las Curanderas-Traditional Healers in New Mexico; and my personal research binder for a special panel I put together for the archives in 2006. The panel was titled Our Woman- Bewitched by Tradition, and I pulled together Native American healers, curanderas, sobadoras, and other folk medicine practitioners to participate in the session.

I still don’t know exactly which shape my piece will assume in the final stages, but I do know three things: it will be about a healer; it will take place in Las Aguitas (Mora, New Mexico); and it will be historical fiction. I frequently solve problems in my dreams, and I was lucky that last night was a good night. I awoke at 5:30 this morning with what I wanted to write in mind, and so I quickly got up and penciled the idea. I’m off to a solid start, and today is a perfect day to complete the piece while sipping on a gourmet vanilla nut breve! Yum… There is no better day than the day that Santa Fe received her first light snow.

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My Dream of Peisinoë…

September 5, 2011

An Enigma of the Sea by Elihu Vedder_Library of Congress Call No. LC-D416-489_Prints and Photographs Division, Washington D.C.

Analysis does not set out to make pathological reactions impossible, but to give the patient’s ego freedom to decide one way or another.”     ***Sigmund Freud

A few days ago, my niece brought over a silver sound machine she has. The machine plugs into the wall, and can play ten distinct sounds. That is all this contraption does. I was intrigued by the small machine when she plugged it in, and she insisted that I listen to the “heartbeat.” I asked her if I could use her oddity for a week. So a couple of nights ago, I put the machine by my bed when I went to sleep. I experimented with the sounds, and the volume, and then finally selected the “ocean waves” setting. Funny, but I had some of the most peaceful sleep that night. I also had some of the most tranquil dreams that I have experienced in a long while. I actually had yet another dream about the water. On this night it was the ocean, and there was a mermaid siren. I was prompted to write about her.

Peisinoë was one of many sirens in Greek mythology. She had the power to captivate, and siren actually means “those who bind.” Persuading first with her mind, then her musical lyre and siren call. Peisinoë relied little on her beauty. As a siren, she was one of several nymphs hailing from the sea. Many believed that she lured seafarers into danger with her alluring siren call, thus insuring their death. Just a few believe she was actually a guide, providing mental refuge. I prefer to consider the latter. So often we get caught up in the face value of so many things in life. We forget that everything can be broken down into basic ideas, or the very essence of cognitive content. Most people would see a siren simply as a woman, and neglect the symbols which she is comprised of, and which surround her. So let’s start a deeper investigation by attaching primary symbols to my siren.

Water:
Water is an ancient symbol of knowledge, and a spiritual symbol of healing, fertility, life, birth and rebirth. In ancient Mesopotamia, the people believed that water represented wisdom. In India, water is identified with reaching Nirvana. Water holds ancient symbolic meanings dealing with the subconscious, and the depth of knowledge. Since we are unsure what may lurk in the ocean, water represents what is surely present, but can’t be seen.

A friend once told me about the book Animal-Speak: The Spiritual and Magical Powers of Creatures Great and Small by Ted Andrews. I purchased the book many years ago when I became interested in the meaning of birds and feathers. In the Augury and the Meaning of Landscapes, Andrews says that “ocean, and water in general, is a dynamic force. It is constantly in transition, and it can reflect the same within your life. The totems of it can reveal how best to work with those transitions. The ocean is also the sum of total possibilities.” (pg 63)

Fish:

Fish of course live in the water. They are symbols of fertility, eternity, creativity, unity (Koi fish), knowledge and transformation. In Greco-Roman mythology, Heros and Aphrodite transformed into fish to flee from the atrocious Typhon. In Celtic mythology, the fish was a symbol of prophecy, inspiration, wisdom and knowledge. In Buddhism, the fish is a symbol of happiness and freedom. Both the scales of a fish, and water have reflective properties. The power of reflection allows us a closer look at ourselves, and the nature of our existence.

Sound:

In his book, Andrews has a chapter titled Reading Signs and Omens in Nature. Some of the “steps to facilitate your ability to reopen communication and to develop augury,” include “the calls, chatter, and other sounds of animals.” (pg 47) Listening to a call, even if it be that of a symbolic siren may prove useful in the decision making process.

Today, if you tell someone you hear a siren, this signals danger. In my waking life, a siren is a warning device. A blaring siren call means avoid something, or to think safety, or turn the other way. When I was dreaming, Peisinoë’s siren call was intended to usher me, and to provide a sanctuary for my intellect. She was not there to hurt me. Peisinoë’s symbols are profound, and capture so much more than the power of her enchanting beauty. Sometimes, we just need to stop looking. We just need to listen and feel…

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.”     ***Carl Jung

The Song of Sirens by Udo J. Keppler_Library of Congress Call No. AP101.P7 1904_Prints and Photographs Division, Washington D.C.





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