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posted by martyb on Wednesday June 09, @08:26AM   Printer-friendly
from the perchance-to-dream dept.

Study finds novel evidence that dreams reflect multiple memories, anticipate future events:

Dreams result from a process that often combines fragments of multiple life experiences and anticipates future events, according to novel evidence from a new study.

Results show that 53.5% of dreams were traced to a memory, and nearly 50% of reports with a memory source were connected to multiple past experiences. The study also found that 25.7% of dreams were related to specific impending events, and 37.4% of dreams with a future event source were additionally related to one or more specific memories of past experiences. Future-oriented dreams became proportionally more common later in the night.

"Humans have struggled to understand the meaning of dreams for millennia," said principal investigator Erin Wamsley, who has a doctorate in cognitive neuroscience and is an associate professor in the department of psychology and program in neuroscience at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina. "We present new evidence that dreams reflect a memory-processing function. Although it has long been known that dreams incorporate fragments of past experience, our data suggest that dreams also anticipate probable future events."

According to Wamsley, the proportional increase of future-oriented dreams later in the night may be driven by temporal proximity to the upcoming events. While these dreams rarely depict future events realistically, the activation and recombination of future-relevant memory fragments may nonetheless serve an adaptive function.

Journal Reference:
Wamsley, Erin. 034 Dreaming as Constructive Episodic Future Simulation, Sleep (DOI: 10.1093/sleep/zsab072.033)

Original Submission

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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by looorg on Wednesday June 09, @08:21PM (1 child)

    by looorg (578) on Wednesday June 09, @08:21PM (#1143695)

    Anyone else dream about code?

    Those would normally fall under the nightmare category. Other peoples code are horrific. Mine is perfect, for me ... as long as nobody else see it.

    In general I think most of my dreams are weird and I am having a hard time connecting them to anything real. I don't even remember most of them beyond fragments. The main thing I wonder about is how time appears to be very different in dreams compared to reality. Then there are things that I can never remember or recall. The dreams are rarely very specific in some regards.
    That said I do know that I am somehow processing things when I sleep cause I sometime wake up with solutions to problems that I have been thinking about. So now I have a notepad at bed, and have had for years. The drawback is that sometimes I do wake up, write things down but then when I wake up again later I have no idea what the hell I have written or what it was about. My dreamy self really needs to work on his penmanship.

    I don't think I have ever, or can recall having, had that nude at work/school dream that is apparently supposed to be so common.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 10, @03:26AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 10, @03:26AM (#1143792)

    The drawback is that sometimes I do wake up, write things down but then when I wake up again later I have no idea what the hell I have written or what it was about.

    "Fax me some halibut"?


    "Salami, salami, bologna"?

    "Cleveland 117, San Antonio 109"?

    I know what it was! "Flaming globes of Sigmond!"