Gentle electrodes are placed on volunteers' scalps and near their eyes. While sleeping, the electroencephalogram (EEG) provides evidence of brain activity. Though sleep seems like a passive state to us, the brain is still very active. In fact, the EEG of a person falling asleep shows five stages of sleep: Stages 1 through 4 and a stage called rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.
Each stage is progressively deeper and the complete cycle is repeated several times during the night. When awakened during REM sleep, subjects report dreaming. So if dreams take place during REM sleep, the question is: Does smoking marijuana interrupt REM sleep? (1975) compared the sleep patterns of experienced marijuana users on tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and a placebo. (1975) reported reduced eye movement activity and less REM sleep in the THC condition. They also reported a REM rebound effect, which is more REM activity, on withdrawal from THC. So, there exists some scientific evidence that marijuana interferes with REM sleep.
No one knows for sure the meaning or function of night-time dreams, but there is plenty of speculation. Freud believed dreams represented the royal road to the unconscious. In his book Memories, Dreams, and Reflections , Jung describes some fascinating dreams of his own. In particular, he describes one dream that haunted him for a long time. When he was about 3-years-old, he dreamed he was in a large meadow. Slowly and cautiously, he descended this dark hole. At the bottom, he found a richly decorated king's throne and on the throne was a huge fleshy object. This thing was about 10 to 15 feet high and came to head but had no face. During the dream, he heard his mother's voice saying that this was a maneater. The 3-year-old Jung, awoke terrified and dripping in sweat. Much later he came to understand the dream as a symbol of a giant phallus and the beginning of his theory of archetypes. I must confess I have never been visited by a giant phallus during the night, but I have had some pretty cool dreams. During a period of intense anxiety, I was obsessed with death. One night, I dreamed I was sitting in a movie theater impatiently waiting for the movie to begin. My father and my brother were next to me and I was facing the big white screen, waiting and waiting. Finally, the picture began and I was flooded with profound white light and overwhelming love. Death had come for me but death was not scary, it was extremely benevolent, loving and blissful. Do you have any night time dreams you'd like to share? Feinberg, I., Jones, R, Walker JM, Cavness, C, March, J. Effects of high dosage delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol on sleep patterns in man. I have often wondered if there was any physiological explaination for why this occured. It has happened to me and also to friends I have spoken to about the subject.
Have you ever lucid dreamed or read any articles involving this topic? i still dream every single night and i am able to wake up, re-experience my dream in my head and then i am able to assume sleeping once again and affect the dream -- possibly -- how i choose to.
Whether or not i made an actual change to the dream is one sided since no one knows about the dreams except the one who perceive it anyhow. This is the biggest and greatest problem with psychology.