All of you have your daydreams—your fantasies—and of course, the dreams and goals you hope to achieve in your lives. However, you have another kind of dream over which you do not often have control…….Those are the ones you experience when you are sleeping.
Dreams are a collection of thoughts and sensations that play in your mind as you sleep. They can be bizarre, amusing, or completely without any real meaning. Nevertheless, they are a real part of your subconscious thoughts.
Dreams usually occur in the R.E.M. stage (rapid-eye movement) of sleep. During this time the brain activity is high and signaled by rapid movements of the eyes. Dreams, of course, can occur during other sleep stages but are less memorable and less clear. Your dreams can last for a few seconds or up to twenty minutes. It is believed all people dream but do not always remember the dreams. If you awaken directly from the R.E.M. sleep, you may be more likely to remember the dream. Depending upon the quality and length of your dream, you could have up to three to four dreams per night.
So why do you dream?
Some experts believe dreams are an important process through which species of animals with complex brains analyze and consolidate information. Other mammals, such as dogs and cats, can also dream. Other experts believe dreaming is nothing more than random brain activity which has little to no logical relevance or significance. Sigmund Freud believed dreams are heavy in symbolism and often show the true emotions or wish fulfillment of a person.
Three basis types of dreams exist: emotional dreams, spiritual dreams, and prophetic dreams. Emotional dreams occur because of some life experiences and fears. In spiritual dreams your spirit is talking to you or seeing something through your spiritual eyes, not your mortal eyes. The third type–the prophetic dream—is a prophecy or insight into something which might occur in the future.
First, the emotional dream is like your mental computer. It is your brain’s way to file and save information and then to witness the filing away of this data your brain is storing. Sometimes an event is too much for your brain to handle so your conscious mind will have a memory loss. Thus, it may file this unpleasant memory away in a secret file which one day may reoccur as an emotional dream.
A spiritual dream is one in which your spirit is trying to explain something or see something you cannot conceive. If it is not something which has actually happened, and it seems as if the dream was symbolic in some way, then most likely it is a spiritual dream. Your spirit does not use a real language—only symbols. Things, such as walking on a fence, helping someone in a place you have never visited, or riding in a car in a place you do not know, could all represent symbols.
Dreams which come straight from God are prophetic dreams. They can be about the future or reveal a deeper understanding about something. A strong feeling of safety or a strong sense of feeling loved usually exists during these kinds of dreams. Symbols of the Holy Spirit are varied; sometimes, He is represented by a body of water—a lake, a stream, a pond, a fountain—either running or still water or even flooding water. The number 3 is considered a direct message from God, such as something happening in 3’s or 3 items which stand out in the dream—3 candlesticks or 3 columns or 3 flashes of bright light. A bridge over water represents the passing between earthly and spiritual life. It can also mean death or a change in the direction of your life. Seeing tornadoes in your dreams represents the mighty move of God.
Even being in a car has spiritual implications. If you dream you are driving a car, a life change or something new will come. If someone else is driving the car, your life is being directed by someone else or you are involved in something that will materialize because of another person. If you know the driver, then you know from where the event is coming, but if you do not know the driver, it could be good or bad. If good, it is God. If evil, you need to pay close attention to the dream and try to figure out what the warning is.
Some studies reveal the substance of dreams is dependent on a number of outside factors, such as gender, social status, culture, and personality. In some cultures, the interpretations of dreams have huge significance. They use dreams to direct their lives even as far as using them to name their children. Opinions about the meaning of dreams have varied and shifted through time and culture. Dream interpretations date back to 5000-4000 B.C. The earliest recorded dreams were acquired from materials dating back approximately 5000 years in Mesopotamia where they were documented on clay tablets. In the Greek and Roman periods, the people believed dreams were direct messages from the gods or from the dead and predicted the future. Some cultures even practiced dream incubation with the intention of cultivating prophetic dreams.
Whatever you believe about the importance or lack of importance of dreams, they are definitely a part of your sleeping hours. Many people find the study of them fascinating and have great fun exploring their meanings. However, experts agree that allowing dreams to control your life is probably not wise. Most of the time logical explanations for your dreams do exist.