THE INTERPRETATION OF DREAMS The Fact beneath the Fiction Michael Neeb, Ph.D. , DABSM, CCTI 1

AN INTRODUCTION TO FREUDIAN THEORY 02/28/2020 2 The Interpretati

on of Dreams First published189 9 3 WISH FULFILLMENT THEORY

Dreams are an expression of unacceptable wishes or impulses that are repressed in the waking state Restrictions remain on the open expression of impulses even during sleepand therefore their expression is often distorted into unrecognizable forms DREAM MENTATION

PRIMARY PROCESS: Thinking that is oblivious to the constraints of normal space and time and logic SECONDARY PROCESS: Thinking that is governed by laws of logic, space, & time DREAM RECALL

The problems with DREAM RECALL: Our attempts to communicate about primary process images & stories experienced during sleep.are compromised by the restrictions of secondary process language & thinking that operate during wake The concept of PRIMARY

PROCESS thinking may explain why dreams are so creative and allow for problem-solving. 7 8 WISH FULFILLMENT THEORY Dreams are an expression of unacceptable

wishes or impulses that are repressed in the waking state REPRESSED IMPULSES In particular: anger and sex Unacceptable in wake life.and therefore suppressed; released for expression in sleep 10

REPRESSED IMPULSES However, even in sleep, must be disguised And once disguised, they must be interpreted to determine their real meaning And thus we have one of the primary tools used in psychoanalysis 11

DREAM WORK The process by which the dreameror the therapist attempts to translate the latent content into the manifest content Manifest Content: by the dreamer the dream as remembered & reported

Latent Content: the underlying meaning of the images, thoughts, feelings expressed in a dream SERIOUS FREUDIAN SYMBOLISM 16 The problem with Freudian wish fulfillment Many people dream with very little

symbolism (i.e., little difference between latent & manifest content) Most dreams seem to represent the subjects emotional and mental state around the time of the dream Repetitive traumatic dreams (PTSD) can hardly be viewed as wish-fulfilling 18

Audience Participation!! eader=dreamsymbol&search=cats


ROBERT McCARLEY 1977 The primary motivating force for dreaming is not psychological but physiological since the time of occurrence and duration of dream sleep are quite constant, suggesting a

preprogrammed, neurally-determined genesis ACTIVATION-SYNTHESIS HYPOTHESIS The brainstem sends random signals up to parts of the forebrain that control emotions, movement, vision, and hearing (the Activation part) and the higher brain centers (cortex)

patch together a reasonable story out of this random electrical input (the Synthesis part) PGO SPIKES PGO Spikes Large electrical potentials Originating in the pons Appear in lateral geniculate nucleus msec later

Then on to occipital cortex (visual centers) PGO SPIKES PGO SPIKES Arrive in bursts after the onset of REM Trigger the rapid eye movements of REM Cause many of the IRREGULARITIES of

REM Dreams are emotional because there is tremendous increase in firing within the

amygdala. ACTIVATION-SYNTHESIS HYPOTHESIS Dreams are strange and fragmented NOT because unacceptable, repressed impulses are being censored But because the brain is in a naturally chaotic state during REM

ACTIVATION-SYNTHESIS HYPOTHESIS The reason that dream content often seems disoriented or bizarre is because the activated brain does its best to attribute meaning and logic to the internally-generated signals of the central nervous system.

ACTIVATION-SYNTHESIS HYPOTHESIS Theory was VERY well received Based on neuroscience, not subjective reports REMEMBER: the field of dream research deals with the worst kind of data:

Half-formed thoughts and memories and images Never encoded into short-term memory Reported by groggy volunteers awakened from their sleep HOW DO WE

RECONCILE ALL OF THIS? 1. We h a v e a d re a m generator in our brains t h a t s e t s o ff neural d i s c h a rg e s

f ro m t h e brainstem on a cyclical basis 2. M a n y d re a m s have an emotional or psychologica l connection to events

o cc u rr i n g i n our daily lives 3. M a n y d re a m s re m a i n connected to past ex p e r i e n ce s and memories

IF ITS ALL RANDOM, HOW CAN IT HAVE MEANING? Perhaps the brainstem sparks an impulse that then travels down a path that is primed for stimulation Where it starts may be random, but where it ends may be more predictable

PRIMING THE PUMP These pathways are primed by virtue of the fact that they have recently been activated by the patients waking thoughts or feelings Or they are primed by virtue of being prominent memories from the past SUBCONSCIOUS PROCESSING

Processing of information during the waking hours: Information that enters through our senses but is never fully processed by our cortex. A fleeting thought unattended to during wake. WHY DO WE DREAM? Memory Consolidation Hypothesis (Helmuth)

REM consolidates learned material and memory acquired during wakefulness Reverse Learning Theory (Crick & Mitchison) Dreams help eliminate cognitive debris from the brains overloaded memory system (beta amyloid)

38 CEREBROSPINAL FLUID (CSF) CSF fills spaces that surround the brain. CSF doesnt stay on the outer surface of the brain, but rather is pumped into the inner regions of brain. It flows along the outsides of the blood vessels, and cleans away the waste from spaces between brain cells. Access to entire brain volume.

The extracellular space between brain neurons increased by approximately 60% in the sleeping brain compared to the waking baseline.

Accomplished by brain cells actually shrinking in size during sleep The authors hypothesized that the restorative properties of sleep may be linked to increased clearance of metabolic waste products produced by neural activity in the awake brain.

Sleep Drives Metabolite Clearance from the Adult Brain Science. 2013 Oct 18; 342(6156): 10.1 1224.

WHAT IS DREAMING? The bizarre, technicolor pastiche of unpredictable, fast moving and usually fascinating scenes...largely based on previous waking events, distorted in irrational ways. Jim

COMMON DREAMS 02/28/2020 Collective Unconscious 42

FLYING Scenario You can fly like a bird, and usually have super-human powers Meaning Youve gained a new perspective on things

and have a positive new outlook. You are in control, and on top of the world. Frequently in response to things like promotions at work, getting married, etc. 43

BEING CHASED Scenario A frightening scene in which someone or something is chasing after you, and you have difficulty getting away.

Meaning You are avoiding or running away from your problems, but the problems are catching up with you. Your subconscious mind suspects a threat is at hand.

44 TAKING AN EXAM Scenario Meaning Suddenly you realize you are supposed to be taking an important

exam. Youre upset because you cant find the classroom, havent been to class all semester, or some such obstacle is in your way. Youre being scrutinized unfairly,

or youre being tested by someone and you dont feel up to the challenge. Or perhaps youve neglected something that needs your attention. 45

TEETH FALLING OUT Scenario Meaning You experience a strange sensation in your mouth, and find yourself spitting out teeth.

Teeth symbolize power and the ability to communicate. Losing teeth means youre feeling powerless in a situation, or youve lost the ability to speak your mind.

46 NAKED IN PUBLIC Scenario Meaning Youre at work or school or other public place, and

you suddenly realize youre not wearing any pants or clothes! Youre feeling exposed because youre not prepared for something you need to do in your

life, or youre feeling insecure about your abilities 47 THE END

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