Psychology of Dreams

3503 Words15 Pages
Psychology of Dreams To many people, dreams are the thoughts that occur while sleeping, having almost mystic qualities. For millennia the significance of dreams has escaped even the brightest of philosophers and intellectuals. Many people have speculated about why people dream and what meanings the dreams have but in recent times two theories have gained credibility in answering those questions. The first theory is Sigmund Freuds and the other is known as the cognitive theory of dreams also known as biological determinism. Freud presented his theory about dreams in the book The Interpretation of Dreams in 1899. In it he sets out to prove "there is a psychological technique which makes it possible to interpret dreams" and that interpretation has a significant meaning to "waking life" (Freud 35). Freuds theory not a new theory; Joseph interprets Pharaohs dream in Genesis 41 of the Bible. Though even in the Bible dreams are given a mysterious quality, Freud states that logical thought can identify both obvious and hidden meaning in dreams. To interpret the dreams, the subject must be three things: comfortable, relaxed, and open-minded. To relax and be comfortable the subject should lie down and close his or her eyes. Closing the eyes also helps increase concentration on thoughts. Next, the subject must say everything that comes to mind and not reject certain thoughts because they may seem unimportant. Freud calls this process "free association" because by having thoughts follow thoughts, associations can be seen between two seemingly unrelated subjects (Freud 133-134). Once the patient is ready to talk about the dream the person analyzing the dream asks certain questions to get more information about the dream, a techni... ... middle of paper ... ....purdue.edu/guidetotheory/psychoanalysis/freud3.html. Fish, Dr. Tom. Freud Essay. 30 July 1999. Cumberland College. Last viewed on 11 Nov. 2004 http://cc.cumberlandcollege.edu/acad/english/litcritweb/theory/freud.htm. Freud, Sigmund. The Interpretation of Dreams. Trans. James Strachey. New York: HarperCollins 1998. Holy Bible: The NIV Study Bible. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1995. Miller, Robert M. Sleep. Last viewed on 16 Nov. 2004 http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/bb/neuro/neuro98/202s98-paper1/Miller.html. Phillips, John. Dream Work. 14 Sept. 2001. Last viewed on 16 Nov. 2004 http://courses.nus.edu.sg/course/elljwp/dreamwork.htm. What Dreams Are Made Of Page 2. Last viewed on 14 Nov. 2004 http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5569244/site/newsweek/. What Dreams Are Made Of Page 3. Last viewed on 14 Nov. 2004 http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5569245/site/newsweek/.
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