why do we dream?
Our dreams mystify us and often leave us waking up confused, disoriented, frightened, or perhaps very, very satisfied. Freud, of course, proposed that our dreams represent unconscious wishes that we’re afraid to express in our waking life. The most recent explanations aren’t totally incompatible with this theory. According to the activation-synthesis model, dreams are stories that we create out of the random stimulation that occurs in the brain while we sleep. The updated activation-integration-modulation (AIM) model proposes that dreams reflect the activity of regions of the brain active at a particular moment as well as the activity of particular neurotransmitters. This neuroscience explanation regards the stories we make up as reflecting, in part, our hidden desires, but they are not primarily the products of repressed wishes.