Why we dream: the definitive answer

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The remarkable story of how the Irish psychologist Joe Griffin went on a quest to discover why dreaming evolved – and eventually succeeded.

With a strikingly simple, intuitively and scientifically satisfying explanation for why we dream, he reveals what dreams do for us and gives readers the key to understanding their own remembered dreams.

Since earliest times, humankind has puzzled over and been inspired by the self-evident symbolism in dream. In modern times the phenomenon remained a mystery to science – until the explanation revealed in this book was announced, tested and found useful.

Definitive AND game changing!

John Zada

Thanks to Griffin’s experiments and his ‘expectation fulfilment theory’ we now know that dreaming keeps us sane, or, in certain circumstances, can drive us mad (psychotic). And this knowledge has opened up wonderful new possibilities for humanity: greater creativity; improved mental health and deeper understanding of who we are.

Why we dream is full of real-life stories, dream examples and case histories. It also explains why dreaming and daydreaming are crucial to human development, and why stories and metaphors have universal appeal. Why we dream: the definitive answer will genuinely change lives and rejuvenate psychology.

Key topics covered:

  • How to work out what our dreams really mean
  • How daydreaming, hypnosis, creativity, dreaming and lucid dreaming are related
  • Why our dreams seem so intense and significant when we experience them, and yet are so easily forgotten
  • Why everyone loves stories
  • The connection between emotions and dreams
  • Why psychotic people appear to be living out bad dreams
  • Why animals dream differently from us … and much more.

Reviews

5/5 (1 Review)
  1. John Zada

    Definitive AND game changing. This highly lucid and compelling book outlines one of the most important recent discoveries in the field of psychology. At its core the book not only argues, but very convincingly demonstrates that we evolved to dream in order to unburden ourselves of certain emotions that accumulate daily in the brain – and which are unexpressed.Dreaming is a kind of release valve, the authors say, that discharges those emotions, thereby working every night to keep our mental health in check. The implications of this discovery for psychology are colossal, in part, because Griffin and Tyrrell show that when the brain is overwhelmed by too many of those emotional burdens (worries and ruminations), and when dreaming becomes excessive as a result, we quickly slip into disequilibrium. Depression, or even psychosis, tend to result.This connection between dreaming and mental illness, if popularly acknowledged, would be a game changer in the field of psychology. This elusive linkage, now effectively demonstrated, might have come to light earlier were it not for the preponderance of pseudo-philosophical (and largely self-serving) theories put forward by writers like Freud and Jung. Their notions which had little practical value for mental health, are convincingly deflated by the authors.We may not all be psychologists, but every one of us dreams. And if we’re to better understand ourselves, our minds, and especially our dreams, we would do well to consider the ideas presented in this book.

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