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Different Types of Dreams Part I

Dreaming is an important part of the sleep cycle although no one can definitely pinpoint the reasoning behind it. Many are left wondering what is the function of dreaming and what do they all mean. According to Macrobius, a philosopher from 405 AD, dreams belong to one of five different categories. In this article, you will learn more about these categories, as well as additional information pertaining to dreams.

Five Types of Dreams

Macrobius dabbled in dream analysis and astronomy, and held an administrative office during the days of Emperor Honorius. He divided the concept of dreaming into five different types:

·    The Dream: a scene or story full of symbolic meaning that requires interpretation

·    The Vision: a clear view pertaining to a future event

·    The Ocular Dream: foretelling of the future that comes from the mouth of a priest or god

·    The Insomnium: A dream that is ordinary and not considered important

·    The Phantasm: a dream or nightmare that occurs when the sleeper is half-awake and has most likely been disturbed.

While many embraced the different categories, it was not the only way to view the process of dreaming. Over the years, the way people thought about dreams changed , with the shifts in society playing an important role. Depending on the circumstances, explanations as to why people dreamed and what they could do with the substance of their dreams varied greatly.

Theories Centered on the Function of Dreams

Dreams have always been connected in some way to helping the mind cope with the frustrations and other downers that take place when the dreamer is awake. If something bad occurs during the day, some dreamers find a resolution when they fall asleep at night. It is not uncommon to come to a resolution in the middle of the night , waking up feeling refreshed and ready to tackle a new day. Dreaming sometimes allows a person to work out the things that cause frustration in their life. The effect is similar to repairing the mind while asleep, and the dreamer doesn’t even have to remember the details of their dream.

Many believe that dreams can save lives, as well as provide revealing information. For example, a person unable to deal with anxiety in their waking life, may find comfort in the events that unfold in a dream. Dreams are full of symbols open for interpretation. The analysis of such symbolism has continued for thousands of years. For example, some interpretations have appeared in many important tales in history, including the Bible.

Today, the other types of dreams that we may experience include:

Lucid Dreaming

When we are in a dream state, our waking consciousness is turned off and our ability to make the decisions that affect everyday living is unavailable. We are unable to analyze a situation, question or make logical deductions. A lucid dream allows you to incorporate the things you do when you are awake within a dream state. Some people believe this is one of the best kinds of dreams to have.