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On Dreams by Aristotle - Essay Example

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Among other phenomena of life, Aristotle interpreted dreams too. Early Greek impression of dreams was that they are from God and are seen during sleep to provide guidance from divine spirits. Aristotle, on the contrary, studied dreams in a more rational way, by saying that dreams are not from God as animals can have dreams too; rather they are the reflections of our daily life activities. He said that we can interpret dreams analogous to the reflections seen in water. According to him, all of the external effects are nullified when we are asleep, but our internal keeps open its eyes and remain aware of our general activities and thoughts, which then we see as a dream. Dreams are mostly consists of fantasies is due to the fact that our common sense does not work while we are asleep, thus we cannot distinguish between a reality and a fantasy in our dreams. He correctly recognized that what we see or hear in our dreams is quite different than what we actually perceive and think. Apart from internal awareness, dreams can also be a mixture of events we experience while awakening, thus we dream these events as we want the things to happen in actual. He interpreted this by using the term “lucid dreaming”, which means to have a clear view in dreams and he explained that due to our unconscious who remains asleep, we can see dreams clearly, but these dreams can be termed as an after-image of everything we go through in day time (On Dreams By Aristotle. 2011, Bixler. Thomas. 1998). Aristotle also claimed that not everybody dreams during sleep, the very likely case is of children who may never dream. He also said that we have dreams during sleep because we are in a sense gets cut-off with the rest of happenings around us. In this process, our sensory organs also respond less than the time when we are awake. These organs develop the after images of objects which remained in-touch with any of the sensory organ in day’s activity. These after images then combine with our imagination and create dreams. When we are asleep and dreaming, we are thinking as this is the actual reality because according to Aristotle, all logics of real world like reason or judgment do not exist. But sometimes it happens too that dream become an illusion. It happens when we become able to differentiate between the reality and our dream and recognize dream as a dream itself. In addition to this, he also claimed that dreams reflect the condition of health of a person and can be used as a source to determine and cure illness, if any. Many doctors and physicians who followed him proved this by treating their patients in the light of this theory (Aristotle, Gallop. 1996). By reading all these views of Aristotle, I personally agree with him. Most of the times I myself dreamt of such things which I want to happen or occur, and these things keep residing in my thoughts until either I achieve the goal or it does not come up with me. Aristotle’s overall interpretation is exactly according to human psychology, dreams are not from divine forces, they are there to make us certain about our wanting and needs, and they definitely reflect all activities which happen during whole day. I myself have almost the same views regarding dreams, but the article made me clearer and provided me more knowledge in interpreting my own dreams. Dreams are natural to occur, most of us have dreams in sleep, it is not at all ...Show more
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Instructor Name:   On dreams by Aristotle No one in the world is unaware of the name of Aristotle. He was unanimously amongst the most popular ancient philosophers and mathematicians of the world. He wrote on almost all of the subjects and topics of the universe and interpreted many phenomena according to human psychology and nature…
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On Dreams by Aristotle
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