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    Thread: Dreaming as a profession

    1. #1
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      Dreaming as a profession

      Has anyone ever thought of this?
      Similarly to what LaBerge, Jung, and Freud researched, but so much more in-depth and focused than them. I'm not sure if there's an exact title for it, maybe a Dream Psychologist or a Consciousness Professor, etc...

      If you really got devoted and found people to back you so that you could start up a dream laboratory, I think that you could start to document and really explore the dream realm, open it up to the general populous, as it's considered almost esoteric in it's usage, although everybody dreams.

      And that's the point too. Everybody dreams. Not sure where I'm going with this, but I've been pondering this idea for a while, I think I could make it happen c:
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      See, for yourself ShadowOfSelf's Avatar
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      Im not sure where you're going with it either. 'Dream Psychologist' A.k.a, Dream interpreter? lol.

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      No like, figuring out the "mysteries" of dreaming. Not just interpreting; exploring, documenting, discovering dreaming. And then you get paid for what you find out!

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      See, for yourself ShadowOfSelf's Avatar
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      Ok sure.

      Similarly to what LaBerge, Jung, and Freud researched, but so much more in-depth and focused than them.
      And how do you plan to do that? lol

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      There is not much data one can get from these labs, not more than the words of the person who is dreaming, one must concider the relieability of this as well. When thinking about it, this is almost the same except that we are not getting paid for our "reports", for now I think you will have to settle without getting paid for what you do

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      Well a dream researcher i suppose couldn't at this moment in time be a well paid full time job, but obviously with films like inception, sucker punch, vanilla sky etc being a step forward in the mysteries of dreams and lucid dreams i think one day the study of dreams may really take forward and open a whole veriety of jobs for dreamers psycologists neurologists etc.

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      I have wondered the same thing, as I am struggling with choosing a profession. I think it would be very neat, and definitely something with some variety. I hope someone knows....
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      I was interested in this myself a while back. The main thing is psychology and neuroscience. Dreaming, subconcious, memories and all that lead from studying the brain.
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      I have been thinking about this a lot the past few weeks actually. I will be off to college in less than a year, and what I will major in is always on my mind. It dawned on me in December how much I enjoy the subject of dreaming, so turning it into a profession is something I would like to do. A dream laboratory would be a great way. There are already some examples of current dream laboratories for example the Dream Laboratory at the Maimonides Medical Center founded by Montague Ullman.

      Alundra brings up a valid point about having to use the claims of dreamers to support your findings. To some extent, having sufficient numbers of recurring data and using experimental designs could suffice as seen with the dream laboratory at Stanford University under Stephen LaBerge.

      However, to really have research on dreaming be accepted by the scientific community, there would need to be a way of converting dreams into concrete data. A developing solution lies in technology that is being developed at UC Berkeley. While a lot of work is still required to be able to actually record dreams, they have made incredible progress. In short summary, they recorded the thoughts of subjects as they watched random videos and using that data were able to create clips that were remarkably similar to the original videos. It's really fascinating; you can read about it here.

      I don't think it's too far off when oneirology becomes fully accepted by the scientific community. In the meantime, we'll just have to find ways to help reach that goal. I know that's what I want to do at least .

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      I am building an open sleep research database - budding oneirologists such as yourself are welcome to pop by at any time and dig through the raw data or replay the highlights of the sessions to get a feel for hands-on lab work.

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      I can have the Singularity Experience of the Lucid Dreaming App for Android send data to a web server, contributing to the raw data available.

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      That would be great! Please send me some logs so I can write a file converter.

    13. #13
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      Phosphenes & Hypnagogic Imagery

      Phosphenes and hypnagogic imagery

      "A phosphene is an entoptic phenomenon characterized by the experience of seeing light without light actually entering the eye. The word phosphene comes from the Greek words phos (light) and phainein (to show).] Phosphenes can be directly induced by mechanical, electrical, or magnetic stimulation of the retina or visual cortex as well as by random firing of cells in the visual system. Phosphenes have also been reported by meditators, people who go for long periods without visual stimulation (also known as the prisoner's cinema) or who are under the influence of drugs, especially a hallucinogen."




      The artist Aaron Ross has a great definition of phosphenes: "phantom images seen only in the mind's eye."

      Phosphenes (literally "light that shines forth") are luminous, ephemeral signposts marking the landscape of inner space. Several scientists have found that phosphenes have common features across cultural boundaries. Such findings point to a universal library of symbols.

      A phosphene is a multicolored shape or pattern seen in the darkness, without external visual stimulation. Phosphenes can be seen with closed eyes or in a completely dark room with open eyes. Phosphenes may appear as:

      * spirals
      * exploding stars
      * wispy clouds
      * wheels
      * tunnels
      * parallel lines
      * wavy lines
      * dotted lines
      * zigzags
      * checkerboards
      * honeycombs
      * spider webs
      * dot patterns
      * circles within circles
      * crosses
      * thin meandering lines, like lightning
      * geometric shapes, like triangles, squares, pentagons
      * and so on.

      They may swirl, pulse, superimpose, fragment, or morph into other images.

      If you have ever bumped your head and seen stars, those were phosphenes. You can, however, stimulate the appearance of phosphenes without hurting your head in the process. Hold your fingers over your closed eyelids and make very slow and gentle circular motions or apply very gentle pressure. When images begin appearing, remove your fingers, keep your eyes closed, and watch the visions. Having a tape recorder handy will allow you to describe out loud the colors, shapes, and other phenomena you witness. This information will be helpful later as you study the symbolic meaning of your visions.

      Why does pressure on the eyeballs create phosphenes? Mathematician G. Bard Ermentrout explains that the pressure inhibits signals from the retina, thereby encouraging the brain's cortex to fill the void. The brain begins firing spontaneously and creates hallucinatory patterns.

      Phosphenes can also be seen under such conditions as:

      * hypnosis
      * reverie
      * fever delirium
      * fatigue
      * sensory deprivation
      * sweat lodges
      * profound concentration
      * hyperventilation
      * medicinal herbs
      * psychoactive drugs (such as LSD)
      * food and water deprivation
      * electrical and magnetic stimulation of the visual cortex
      * strobe lights
      * rhythmic movement
      * migraine headaches
      * meditation
      * trance states
      * intense emotion
      * stress
      * crystal gazing

      The behaviour of phosphenes seems to be uncontrollable by scientists. In 1994, vision researcher William H. Dobelle discovered that the phosphene lights flicker at a rate which seems unrelated to the cardiac pulse, breathing rate, or other physiologic functions.

      Phosphene researcher and artist Lorena Babcock Moore says that under the influence of drugs and other intense forms of stimulation, phosphenes become "more pronounced and the patterns (called entoptics) increase in complexity and may include flashes, spirals, circles, or zigzags that move in concentric circling, horizontal streaking, vertical falling, or scattering fragments. Motifs may overlap and transform into one another." However, Moore does not use intense methods for her own phosphene work. She prefers outdoor solitary drumming.

      Distinct shapes are commonly seen in phosphenes. Phosphenes are said to be generated by the nervous system's intrinsic geometry.

      Vivid, morphing colors are typical. Phosphenes typically change color in phases:

      1. Yellow
      2. Bright green with a red halo expanding toward the center
      3. Red with a blue halo expanding toward the center
      4. Blue
      5. Grey, faint afterimage

      These inner visions have inspired artistic works throughout human history. In 1989, researcher Richard Bradley applied the concept of phosphenes to European megalithic art. He attributed many mysterious cave drawings with the phosphene visions of the ancient artists. Art historian A. E. Iribas has traced the influence of phosphenes on such art as:

      * the "childlike" art of Miro
      * the psychedelic art of Michaux
      * the surrealist art of Dali
      * the mandalas of Tibetan Buddhism
      * the architecture of temples
      * alchemical imagery
      * Hildegard von Bingen's illuminations
      * the work of contemporary painters such as Onslow-Ford, Kupka, Kandinsky, av Klint, and others

      In 1983, Qabala expert Philo Stone suggested that phosphenes are actually "sparks of pure energy, light perceived at the moment of its conversion into nervous-system information between the cornea and the brain. Thus, phosphenes may be the behavior of atomic particles as observed by the naked eye: the interface of two worlds, the normal and the nuclear -- the fourth dimension."

      The French physician Francis Lefebure (1916-1988) experimented with a technique of combining a thought with a phosphene in order to transform the energy of light into mental energy. He believed that conscious phosphene work would stimulate memory, attention, intelligence, imagination, intuition, creativity, decision making, patience, perseverance, self confidence, dreaming, and the discovery of new dimensions. His technique involved stimulating phosphenes with a light source:

      1. Sit in a darkened room.
      2. Look at the bulb of a small pocket flashlight (non-halogen) for thirty seconds.
      3. Turn off the light and, with open eyes, see the phosphene.
      4. Place a thought inside the phosphene: "A thought of love, goodness, peace, wisdom, a thought dedicated to unhappy and unlucky people of the planet."
      5. Keep both the phosphene and the thought for at least one minute, smiling throughout.

      The phosphene generators are the stars above our heads, which ones were YOU born under, that is the first question.

      Phosphenism : The Genesis of the Method
      Phosphenic Mixing Applied to Education

      Everyone practice this exercise : Phosphenism: ocular convergence.

    14. #14
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      I plan on bringing back Shamanism as a valid profession. For me, this would constitute dreaming as a mode of healing/teaching.

    15. #15
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      Well I'm in a major of Neuroscience right now at Dalhousie University and I'm definitely interested in doing research on sleep and oneirology. There are still lots of subjects that can be explored with dreaming and sleep, and I wouldn't be surprised if some incredible discoveries are made over the next few decades as neuro-imaging technologies and others are improved!
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      Currently working on a nonfiction popular science book on sleep and dreaming. I am a sleep researcher in the dep of medical neuroscience at Dalhousie University, writer, and clinical research coordinator for phase II-IV drug trials.

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    16. #16
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      Hey Aeolar

      If you were looking to make a profession out of this, with my limited knowledge, I would say your options lie in writing or research. You could take the path of philosophy, writing, or psychology and speculate about the reasons, implications, and what ever else about lucid dreaming, or you could go into a scientific field of psychology, physiology, or neuroscience (and possibly even computing sciences).

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