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Let's dream a little dream

There are a number of theories about dreams. Some are supernatural where others are scientific. Some can help you understand your dreams while others simply say it’s thought that have no meaning. Dr. John Kappas, PhD was a hypnotherapist and founder of the Hypnosis Motivation Institute in Modesto CA. Dr. Kappas said, “A person can only measure their own dreams. The therapist is a guide to help the dreamer translate.”

He based his theory on the principle that each person is unique and that each color, item and context takes the dreamer on a journey that has been built and created from their own experiences. The important thing is to remember the dream, record the symbols and then apply specific and individual meanings to thing. Kappas argues that it is impossible to know exactly what something is like from another’s perspective.

Another thing that Kappas said was important was the time of night the dream took place. Basically there are 4 to 5 phases of sleep, usually between 90 minutes to 2 hours per stage each night. Evidence collected by various studies indicates that most people have 3 to 4 dreams in a night.

Dreams occur in 3 stages. According to Kappas, those stages are wishful thinking, precognitive and venting.

Wishful thinking tends to be the final images and stimulations of the day. They tend to have simple images from a movie to a set of worries a person holds. That’s why so many therapists tell their clients to stop watching the late news just before going to bed. All those bad images of car wrecks, deaths, robberies, and so forth are the last images you see before going to sleep.

The wishful thinking dream is basically the time the brain uses to sort the information received throughout the day. The mind stacks, sorts, and decides what information is necessary and what is not.

The precognitive stage is the time of dreaming where the dreamer tries to work out issues. In this stage, the dreamer may see various actions for various situations. The subconscious mind simply tries to figure out what is going to happen, based on experience of ideas that are in the mind.

If you’ve ever had that feeling of déjà vu, Dr. Kappas says this occurs when a scenario that has been thought of by the subconscious during the precognitive stage is close enough to what is actually happening that you mind “feels” like this has happened before. In other words, your subconscious has already worked out the real result before it actually happens.

The venting stage is where something that could not be resolved or was itself a resolution is vented from the subconscious. The mind is cleaning house, getting rid of the things you no longer really need to hold on to. This is also the most memorable stage of dreaming because the dreamer usually wakes up after this stage. And the dreams that occur right before waking are remembered stronger.

If you’ve ever dreamed of a childhood friend that you have not thought about in years and suddenly they are in your dream, it may have been the subconscious mind venting that memory. Now what tends to happen is we start to think about that person and wonder, “Why were they in my dream.” This causes the memory to be solidified in the subconscious. So, what the mind was venting may be re-established in the subconscious.

Can anyone really interpret your dreams? According to Kappas, only you can determine what your dreams mean. You are the master of what the meaning is for you…no one else.

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