The Meaning of Dreams

San Tan Park; Photo Credit: Doree Weller

San Tan Park; Photo Credit: Doree Weller

One night, not long ago, I had a dream that my family was gathered for Christmas dinner.  My parents were there, and so was my husband, my sister/ brother in law, and my brother.  We all went to sleep, and when we woke the next morning, I was going to make breakfast, but noticed that the gas line to my stove was pulled off, leaking gas into the house.  The husband and I got everyone out of the house and called 911, but my brother was missing.  In the dream, I wasn’t worried.

Everyone was fine, but then a detective came asking questions.  Around that time, my brother returned, and the detective focused on him.  She didn’t want to take fingerprints or look at some random footprints in the garage which seemed meaningful in my dream.  I asked her about that, and she said, “I already know who did it.”  Then my alarm went off.

Some people swear dreams have all kinds of meanings, while other people believe they’re essentially meaningless.  I fall somewhere in between.  I think that the brain is an amazing and minimally understood organ, and that it’s working constantly.  I think that dreams are the brain’s way of processing the day’s events, but not necessarily in any logical way.

I read The Mind at Night: The new science of how and why we dream, by Andrea Rock.  The book was based on studies about sleep, and showed that people who processed emotion through their dreams actually recovered from depression and anxiety faster than those who didn’t.

A new website, DreamsCloud, offers to interpret dreams for you.  This isn’t one of those stupid things where you plug something in and it generates a random response; licensed psychologists and dream experts actually interpret them for you.  It sounds interesting enough to try.  I don’t know if there’s anything to it or not, but… why not?  Here’s an article about it. 



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