A dream is a succession of images, sounds or emotions which the mind experiences during sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not fully understood, though they have been a topic of speculation and interest throughout recorded history. The scientific study of dreams is known as oneirology. The technology for studying dreams has been around for a few decades.
The cultural meaning of dreaming
Jacob’s dream of a ladder of angels
Throughout history, people have sought meaning in dreams or divination through dreams. Dreams have been described physiologically as a response to neural processes during sleep, psychologically as reflections of the subconscious, and spiritually as messages from gods, the deceased, predictions of the future or from the Soul, for symbology is the language of the Soul. Many cultures practice dream incubation, with the intention of cultivating dreams that were prophetic or contained messages from the divine.
Judaism has a traditional ceremony called “Hatavat Halom” – literally meaning making the dream a good one. Through this rite disturbing dreams can be transformed to give a positive interpretation by a rabbi or a rabbinic court.