Within the realm of scientific discovery, the topic of dreaming is an infant still in incubation. The tests are still being run, but the topic itself has not quite left the hospital. Great progress has been made towards helping us to understand this mysterious area of the human sciences, but many questions still remain. There are many things we do know about dreaming though. Here are 5 facts about dreaming that you probably didn’t know.
5 facts about dreaming:
1 - The average person forgets roughly 90% of their dreams, within about 5 minutes of being awake
2 - Many people believe that dreams don't necessarily mean what you think they mean. Similar to Plato's allegory of the Cave, some people believe that when you leave the cave and see the light, your unconscious mind has difficulty describing that information to the conscious mind. Our minds have to translate that message into images that take on a dreamlike form. Sigmund Freud held a similar belief. He differentiated between such content as "latent content" and "manifest content".
3 - We are paralyzed while we sleep. As soon as we enter into our first dream within the night, our brains release a chemical that paralyzes the rest of the body. This is so that we don't act out our dreams. Imagine the problems that could potentially enter into your love life if you were laying next to your partner while being in the middle of a nightmare. Interestingly, some people tend wake up at this stage of sleep paralyzation. This tendency is called sleep paralysis. Ever happened to you?
4 - Roughly 10 % of people dream in black and white even though they may not be color blind in real life. It's a strange phenomenon and research doesn't really tell us much about the reason why, but for whatever reason 10% of people cannot see color in their dreams.
5 - The images and people you see in your dreams have all been seen by you before, regardless of whether you can remember seeing them or not. Your dreams simply rearrange (often in very creative ways) things that have been experienced at least once by your senses. This is why some therapists, such as Sigmund Freud, take an interest in analyzing dreams, because in a way they are the memory book of our emotions.