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      Time in Dreams

      Time In Dreams

      According to wikipedia, "REM sleep in adult humans typically occupies 20–25% of total sleep, about 90–120 minutes of a night's sleep." So we only dream for a max of two hours a night. With each REM phase lasting 15-25 minuits. How is it possible then that dreams can seem to last for much longer?

      Have you ever tried to tell time in a dream? Well obviously it does not work. Infact cheking clocks can be a reality check in dreams. So if we can't tell time how do people make claims of time in a dream?

      A simple answer would be, "they feel the time go by." But how do we feel time?

      Think back to your least favorite class durring school. Didn't that class seem to drag on for hours? For me it was history. An eighty minute class seemed to last for two hours.

      Now think about one of your favorite activities. Time just flys while ocupied with it. For me guitar is a great passion. Time just speeds up while playing. Eighty minutes of guitar seems like fourty tops.

      So now you can see a contrast in time. This here shows that even though time can be mesured with a clock humans experience time differently.

      A human has no dirrect way to measure time. Seconds, minutes, hours, days. All of these are made up amounts of time.

      So humans have a feel for time but clearly a fluxuation of 80 minutes between experiences isn't accurate. And this can vary from day to day.

      Now an even bigger confusion to time in dreams is that quite often you remeber the dream as a past event. Instead of keeping track of the time durring the dream it is a recolection. A remeberance of time can be even more skewed then just human perception.*

      So does this mean that you only get 15-25 minutes of dream experience every REM phase? Quite simply no. If it feels like two hours have passed in a dream two hours might have passed. Your perception of time could have slowed down so that you crammed hours of experience into a few minutes of REM sleep.

      So don't go telling people they didn't have a two hour long dream. For all you know they did.

      ~Zebrah
      Last edited by zebrah; 06-25-2010 at 03:03 AM.

    2. #2
      Moo nsi dem oons ide kookyinc's Avatar
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      Very interesting. My hypothesis is that because your brain is not actually taking in much external information during dreams, there can be more... I'll say time experience, during dreams. Granted, perception of external things is quick, but if it is almost not there, it probably changes how time if felt.
      I dunno. I'm not a neurologist.
      I don't usually think, therefore I mostly am not.
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      You can not convince the one with faith who needs not look for fact that the facts "prove them wrong".
      Likewise, you cant teach some one who looks for facts to have faith in the absence of facts.

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      Oneironaut Eldraziking187's Avatar
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      I have had dreams that felt like days so I agree with what you are sayin'.
      I once had a dream. That I was eating a peanut butter and tuna fish sandwich. And, lemme tell you something it was delicious. So the next day, I decided to make that sandwich and in real life it is disgusting sandwich.

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      Yeah the thing is humans have no bodily funtion that measures time. Only clocks. And in dreams clocks don't work.

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      Newbie louie54's Avatar
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      Nice that you put this time thing in perspective. Math class for me, time works like this: for every 5 or so minutes that seem to go by, the clock for some reason only goes 1 minute. The same could be thought of with dreaming.

      Keep in mind though that REM sleep doesn't mean that we are dreaming for we can also dream outside REM. It's just that dreams are a little more intense.

      Saying how long your actual dream is/was is a tough call. There is really no way of knowing unless performed by an advanced lucid dreamer in a sleep lab. Which I believe this has been done by Stephen LaBerge and found that there is no significant difference with time. Maybe about a second or 2 off at most.

      Thanks for sharing

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      Yeah I read about the 2-3 second thing somewhere. I will need to find that report. Hrmm I need to start subscribing to some scientfic journals. They are so much fun to read.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Zebrah View Post
      Time In Dreams

      Your perception of time could have slowed down so that you crammed hours of experience into a few minutes of REM sleep.

      I have always believed that that is the best answer to this phenomenon.
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      Quote Originally Posted by mutualdreamer View Post
      I have always believed that that is the best answer to this phenomenon.
      Thanks. It makes sense doesn't it.

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      Loaded with Comma's reality<LDs's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Zebrah View Post
      Yeah the thing is humans have no bodily funtion that measures time. Only clocks. And in dreams clocks don't work.
      People do have a bodily function for measuring time. Have you ever gone to sleep and told yourself, I will wake up at 6 o clock, I will wake up at 6 o clock? Repeating it until you went to sleep. And then you wake up (usually) and realize that it is within 5-10 minutes of 6 o clock? Our bodies are made to measure time, as a survival precaution. (ie: Need to wake up before the predator at this time)
      Lucid Dream Goals: [X]Fly []Have a pokemon battle []summon an undead []look at a mirror, and have my image do something i am not doing.


      http://img229.imageshack.us/img229/1165/chrisdreamsigcopyda3.png
      "I think we dream so we don't have to be apart so long. If we're in each others dreams, we can be together all the time." -Hobbes

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      That is not a bodily funtion. That is our brains guessing when we need to wake up from past experiences. It is not 100% accurate though. If it was why would we need clocks?

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      Loaded with Comma's reality<LDs's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Zebrah View Post
      That is not a bodily funtion. That is our brains guessing when we need to wake up from past experiences. It is not 100% accurate though. If it was why would we need clocks?
      As taken from bodyclock.com:
      Jetlag is actually caused by disruption of your 'body clock', a small cluster of brain cells that controls the timing of biological functions (circadian rhythms), including when you eat and sleep. The body clock is designed for a regular rhythm of daylight and darkness, so it's thrown out of sync when it experiences daylight and darkness at the 'wrong' times in a new time zone. The symptoms of jetlag often persist for days as the internal body clock slowly adjusts to the new time zone.

      Now, jetlag is just an example of how this "body clock" works. Its not an exact number, but our bodies are capable of "guessing" the time. Not from past experiences, entirely, but from the rhythm of daylight and darkness that it experiences.

      EDIT: We "feel" the time with this body clock, based on exposure to light/dark.
      Lucid Dream Goals: [X]Fly []Have a pokemon battle []summon an undead []look at a mirror, and have my image do something i am not doing.


      http://img229.imageshack.us/img229/1165/chrisdreamsigcopyda3.png
      "I think we dream so we don't have to be apart so long. If we're in each others dreams, we can be together all the time." -Hobbes

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      Ok that's interesting. I didn't know we had a specific area of brain cells for night day cycles. Although the point of this post was not about tracking night and day but seconds.

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      I think of it like a movie. You can watch a movie that spans weeks, compressed into 90-120 minutes. I always get all sorts of false memories in my dreams. I will remember having lived an entirely different life, with a complete back story. This really screws things up.

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      how many times have you lived another life? Just once right?

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      Newbie louie54's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Robot_Butler View Post
      I think of it like a movie. You can watch a movie that spans weeks, compressed into 90-120 minutes. I always get all sorts of false memories in my dreams. I will remember having lived an entirely different life, with a complete back story. This really screws things up.
      I agree with this. I can't recall a dream where I lived another life, but this pretty much sums it up.

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      Yeah there are times were our minds just fill in the blanks.

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      Μην Μετάφραση Zezarict's Avatar
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      Someone may be able to time the dream in their head if they are very aware, it can be done sometimes. But I think there is a limit to how long a dream can be, but it is more on your perception of time, I think your perception of time can slow down the dream, just in your head. So it can feel longer than it was.

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      Dreaming is a very complex issue. I do not think that's very easy to understand.Of course, to discuss this issue is very interesting.

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      The brain's perception of time can change. Have you ever heard of the experiment where they take a person with a kind of watch on their wrist that generates number combinations too fast for the normal human eye to perceive, but then you take that person with the special number watch thing and drop them from a bridge with a bungie chord attached? Time dilates for the person and they are able to recognize the numbers. Our brains perceive time at a certain speed but who's to say that's how fast time is actually going by? I would imagine that in a dream time could dilate immensely since there is no outside world to give it reasons to go at a certain speed.

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      The Dream Lycanthrope Kaos's Avatar
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      you know, this may sound a little ridiculous, but has anyone ever counted in their head as long as they could in a lucid dream? You could test this by looking at the real life clock before falling asleep, then count when becoming lucid. If time really is that much slower in dreams, then wouldn't a person count out to themselves a longer amount of minutes than it the time you would be asleep?

      Lucid goals: Fight and kill Jacob Black [X], Go trick or treating as a wolf [ ], Help a pack stalk and hunt a large extinct game animal [ ], Play fetch with a DC [ ], Become a shape-shifting spy deployed behind enemy lines [ ], Face and fight off a nightmare as a wolf [X], After transformation look in mirror and really observe every detail about my body [ ]

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      That might work. The only problem is that the higher you count the more distorted your time is. I suppose if you got quote good at counting IRL you could transfer that over to dreams.

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      that is a interesting topic. i want to say that everyone has a dream in their heart, but how to let it come true, maybe not everyone knows. wish everyone's dream come true.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Zebrah View Post
      That might work. The only problem is that the higher you count the more distorted your time is. I suppose if you got quote good at counting IRL you could transfer that over to dreams.
      Something similar was actually laboratory tested by Stephen LaBerge. I already posted in a different thread about the same thing, so I'll copy and paste what I said there, here.

      Quote Originally Posted by Deco
      Stephen LaBerge did an experiment to test the time differences between the dream world and real world. Since in REM sleep, your eyes are moving the same way that your dream eyes are moving, he gave the dreamers an eye movement pattern that they had to do once they became lucid. Then they had to count to 10, and then do the pattern again. After reviewing the eye movements, the pattern showed up, and then showed up again 10 seconds later, so the dream time was equal to the real world. He explained that the reason for dreams that seem very long were because it just seems that way, because there are a lot of time skips that we just don't notice.

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      One of the earliest experiments conducted by my research team tested the traditional notion that the experience of dream time is somehow different from time in the waking world. We approached the problem of dream time by asking subjects to make an eye movement signal in their lucid dreams, estimate a ten-second interval (by counting one thousand and one, one thousand and two, etc.), and then make another eye movement signal. In all cases, we found time estimates made in lucid dreams were within a few seconds of estimates made in the waking state and likewise quite close to the actual time between signals. From this we have concluded that in lucid dreams, estimated dream time is very nearly equal to clock time; that is, it takes just as long to do something in a dream as it does to actually do it.

      You may be wondering, then, how you could have a dream that seems to last for years or lifetimes. I believe this effect is achieved in dreams by the same stage trick that causes the illusion of the passage of time in the movies or theater. If, on screen, stage, or dream, we see someone turning out the light as the clock strikes midnight, and after a few moments of darkness, we see him turning off an alarm as the bright morning sun shines through the window, we'll accept (pretend, without being aware that we are pretending) that many hours have passed even though we "know" it was only a few seconds.
      From Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming by Stephen LaBerge.
      Tutorial: How to Fall Asleep Faster
      You are dreaming.Do a reality check.

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      This is one of the reason i dream lucid. i want to have 100 years of time to think things, while in reality only one second passed. that would be wonderfull if possible

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