Summary of “What Are Dreams? Here Are the Predominant Theories.”

For all the commonalities dreams exhibit, they vary across time-people who grew up watching black-and-white TV are more likely to dream in black and white -and culture.
A 1958 study determined that compared with Japanese people, Americans dreamed more about being locked up, losing a loved one, finding money, being inappropriately dressed or nude, or encountering an insane person.
Japanese people were more likely to dream about school, trying repeatedly to do something, being paralyzed with fear, or “Wild, violent beasts.”
If human dreams sound bleak, bear in mind that even negative ones can have positive effects.
In a study of students taking a French medical-school entrance exam, 60 percent of the dreams they had beforehand involved a problem with the exam, such as being late or leaving an answer blank.
Those who reported dreams about the exam, even bad ones, did better on it than those who didn’t.
So the next time you dream about an education-related sexual experience in which you are both falling and being chased, don’t worry: It’s probably totally meaningless.
This article appears in the April 2019 print edition with the headline “Study of Studies: Bad Dreams Are Good.”.

The orginal article.

Summary of “We teach black boys sports are their only hope. What if we let them dream bigger?”

Not excelling at sports as a black boy meant not being cool – even weirder, it meant not really being black.
Passed down generation to generation, from black boy to black boy, those jerseys empowered us.
Most of the black boys I spent my afternoons with, playing in imaginary Super Bowls, weren’t at the lockers next to mine.
That’s fine: Playing in the NFL isn’t really – and shouldn’t have to be – every black boy’s dream.
Black boys shouldn’t have to feel that being good at sports is the only way to be cool – or to be valued by the world.
We shouldn’t have to imagine being “The black Walt Disney” or “The black Steven Spielberg” to think about going into movies, “The black Steve Jobs” or “The black Bill Gates” to dream of being high-tech innovators, or “The black Stan Lee” to picture ourselves as comic book writers.
We can begin to change that – not just by integrating those mostly white realms but also by allowing black boys the space to dream differently.
The world is more beautiful when we let black boys dream big.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Science of Dreaming”

In her new book, Why We Dream, Robb, a science journalist, presents a comprehensive and compelling account of theories of and research on dreaming from ancient times through the present day.
Throughout, she displays an intense respect for what our minds do while we’re sleeping, and the findings she presents – that dreaming is essential for sanity, that analyzing our dreams can be revelatory, that dreams can be used as diagnostic tools and even manipulated for our own mental health-corroborate her conviction that, as a culture, we would benefit from paying more careful attention.
You write about how talking about our secrets, anxieties, fears, and desires through the language of dreaming gives us a way to talk about them safely, with a bit of distance.
Often, people will have more intense phases of dreaming and remember their dreams more when they’re working through something that’s really emotionally fraught.
If you focus on something before you go to bed, you can increase your likelihood of dreaming about it.
Lucid dreaming, like regular dreaming, is very idiosyncratic, so there may be people who can control every aspect-but part of what’s fun about lucid dreaming for those of us who can’t is that you’re very aware, but you’re not controlling everything, so things are still surprising.
A friend who I sent a galley to just texted me that her mom was in a lucid dreaming study in the 1980s at UVA. And I was like, “I would’ve loved to have interviewed your mom.”
It’s hard to find people who are so skilled at lucid dreaming that they can just go into a sleep lab and do it any night of the week.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why We Sleep, and Why We Often Can’t”

Alice Robb’s book “Why We Dream” is a spirited rebuke to the idea of sleep as a mere parting with consciousness.
In exploring the pleasures and uses of dreams, she seeks to persuade us that sleep is not just the “Off” to waking’s “On” but another realm of being, a second consciousness, rich in adventure and wisdom.
At the annual conference of the International Association for the Study of Dreams, held in a medieval abbey in the Netherlands, she encounters people who believe in dream telepathy, and in using “Energy fields” for dream interpretation.
Science has long understood that REM sleep-the stages of sleep characterized by rapid eye movement, in which most dreaming takes place-plays a vital role in our mental health.
In recent decades, thanks in large part to the advent of brain-imaging machines, scientists have been able to establish that dreams themselves are essential to the benefits of REM sleep.
The two chief factors determining your interest in someone else’s dreams would seem to be your level of emotional investment in the person telling the dream and the extent to which you believe that dreams can be intelligently interpreted.
Nabokov, who had quite a rich dream life and often used dreams in his fiction, was briefly taken by a hokey theory that dreams were precognitive, but otherwise he maintained that they were without significance, a stance probably influenced by his extreme antipathy to Freudian theory.
In celebrating dreams as poetic artifacts, Robb offers a welcome antidote to the medicine administered by most sleep gurus.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Day Dostoyevsky Discovered the Meaning of Life in a Dream – Brain Pickings”

One November night in the 1870s, legendary Russian writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky discovered the meaning of life in a dream – or, at least, the protagonist in his final short story did.
The piece, which first appeared in the altogether revelatory A Writer’s Diary under the title “The Dream of a Queer Fellow” and was later published separately as The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, explores themes similar to those in Dostoyevsky’s 1864 novel Notes from the Underground, considered the first true existential novel.
The contemplation at its heart falls somewhere between Tolstoy’s tussle with the meaning of life and Philip K. Dick’s hallucinatory exegesis.
The story begins with the narrator wandering the streets of St. Petersburg on “a gloomy night, the gloomiest night you can conceive,” dwelling on how others have ridiculed him all his life and slipping into nihilism with the “Terrible anguish” of believing that nothing matters.
Exactly the same in the moral sense: if anything very pitiful happened, I would feel pity, just as I did before everything in life became all the same to me.
Sometimes I see him in a dream: he takes part in my affairs, and we are very excited, while I, all the time my dream goes on, know and remember perfectly that my brother is dead and buried.
It happened as always in a dream when you leap over space and time and the laws of life and mind, and you stop only there where your heart delights.
Complement it with Tolstoy on finding meaning in a meaningless world and Margaret Mead’s dreamed epiphany about why life is like blue jelly.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How to Recover From a Night of Bad Dreams”

My dream last night was so upsetting that I actually don’t want to describe it, for fear that will somehow make it come true, but I’ll just say that it involved a family member’s extremely gruesome health emergency.
Thankfully this sort of thing doesn’t happen to me too often, but when it does it’s jarring, and leaves me emotionally drained and anxious all day – even though I know what I dreamt isn’t “Real.” I tend to feel guilty about dwelling on something I only imagined, but according to Alice Robb, author of Why We Dream: The Transformative Power of Our Nightly Journey, out later this month, it’s normal to experience real, bodily effects after traumatic dreams.
“Emotions and stress experienced in dreams can have very real emotional and physiological consequences,” she says.
In the long-term, Robb suggests learning to lucid dream, or even just practicing lucid dreaming techniques during the day.
In her book, she writes: “If people can learn to become conscious in their dreams, they can wake themselves up or even banish their dream-foes.” She describes a 2006 experiment done by psychologists at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, in which the researchers asked some participants to practice lucid dream induction techniques on their own, gave private lucid dreaming lessons to others, and then left a third group untreated.
“[and] the improvement didn’t depend on achieving lucidity; several people who never managed to become lucid in their dreams still had a reduction in nightmares.
“Dream recall is sharpest right when you wake up, and I like knowing as many details as I can – rather than having that hazy feeling of ‘WTF happened last night to make me feel this way?'” Dream journals are often recommended as a means to greater self-intuition, but they can be more utilitarian, too.
If writing your dreams down isn’t your scene, or even if it is, sometimes it’s helpful to – yes – talk about your dreams with a willing listener or two.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Do Babies Dream When They’re in REM Sleep?”

In the 1960s, as the journalist Alice Robb explains in her forthcoming book Why We Dream, the psychologist David Foulkes theorized that children seldom remember their dreams before age 9.
Just because they can “Perceive a reality,” he wrote, doesn’t mean they “Can dream one as well.” Instead, he found that children don’t start dreaming until they’re a few years old and can imagine their surroundings visually and spatially.
“Yes, as far as we can tell,” he said when asked whether babies dream, noting that “It is a well-based inference” that they do so during the phase of sleep characterized by rapid eye movements, or REM. REM sleep is when most dreaming occurs for humans.
According to Kelly Bulkeley, a psychologist of religion who studies dreams, REM sleep is also believed to help people consolidate their memories and mentally digest them, though sometimes in strange and seemingly illogical ways.
Research dating back to the 1960s on the purpose of REM sleep for babies in particular has found that it supports brain development, helping infants to convert their experiences and observations during conscious hours into lasting memories and skills.
Perhaps that’s why babies experience much more REM sleep than adults do-about half of babies’ sleeping hours are spent in REM sleep, compared with about 20 to 25 percent for older humans.
Those who dispute the idea that babies dream, according to Bulkeley, often point to the fact that the visual images humans create in their brains during sleep are informed by their waking realities.
That’s partially what Foulkes may have been getting at: Since babies have such little emotional and sensory experience to draw from, there’s not a lot of material to transform into a dream.

The orginal article.

Summary of “You’re Wasting Your Spare Time And It’s Killing Your Success”

That’s because achieving your dream takes a hell of a lot of time.
To achieve your life’s purpose and be successful, you have to dedicate time to it.
Your spare time my friends is where your dreams and goals come true.
I’ve studied all the great’s of our time and they all seem to be mediocre on the surface.
The difference is that these tycoons of their field spent an unreasonable amount of time chipping away at all the goals required to achieve their dream.
These champions were probably up late at night working on their dream or rising early, but they certainly weren’t wasting a single ounce of time.
What we’re missing is that when we get home from work / running a business, we waste the time between the late afternoon and before we go to bed.
Then we wake up in the morning and waste the most productive hours of the day tucked up in bed or having a long and unnecessary breakfast for the sake of wasting time.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Everyone Talks About Living Their Best Life. How Do You Actually Do It?”

You don’t need to come from the right pedigree.
What is it that you actually want? You don’t need to construct a vision board, just be honest with yourself.
How much money will it take until you feel accomplished? What experiences do you want to have? Write it down if it helps you put it into focus.
Most successful people spend countless hours working and training to reach their goals.
In order to create the lifestyle that you dream of, you need to surround yourself with positive people that push and encourage you.
If you’re an entrepreneur, you need to meet investors, potential clients and press years before you need their help.
If your dream is to be a digital nomad and travel blogger, you need to develop connections with those in the industry to find out what separates the successful people from the wannabes.
You don’t need to fulfill your goals as quickly as possible.

The orginal article.

Summary of “‘Inception’ Is Still Christopher Nolan’s Masterpiece”

There are good movies and great movies and sad movies and then there are movies that delay the onset of reality once they are over.
A movie audience pays however many dollars for a ticket and all they ask for in return is to feel at once safe and challenged.
Regardless of how much of the film is a “Dream,” the movie is a fantasy - a brilliant commentary on the dream logic of storytelling and an essay on the sleight of hand that is film editing.
If you start asking these questions, or any of the hundreds of others proposed on blogs and message boards over the years, it’s hard to take what you see in the movie at face value.
Around the time the movie stops making sense, once Dom enters Limbo, characters that played like staid “Types” become wracked with guilt and longing.
This is the only Christopher Nolan movie that calls bullshit on Christopher Nolan movies.
First there’s the whole plot of the movie which is capably critiqued by a character in the movie itself.
This is a character in a Christopher Nolan movie asking whether or not the story mechanics of a Christopher Nolan movie aren’t just a little bit ridiculous.

The orginal article.