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Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 26 May 2012 23:54
by Felipeteex
I speak Portuguese because I'm from Brazil, but I'm currently living in England so I'm surrounded by the english language... Today I had a lucid dream and I asked my dream some things, but when I woke up, althought I know what I said, I didn't remember the actual words I said. Therefore, I don't know in whoch language I'm dreaming.

I've noticed this before in normal dreams, which made me think that in dreams, we convert emotions and feelings to a way of understanding our surrounding, without actually using words... I don't know if that makes much sense...

Does anyone have similar experiences?

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 27 May 2012 02:22
by Ryan
We "experience" in metaphors.

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 30 May 2012 23:03
by Summerlander
Ola, my fellow Portuguese-speaking comrade! In dreams we can express ourselves in many different ways. We have two brain hemispheres that are connected to each other by the corpus callosum (adjoining organic fibres).

The left hemisphere of the brain deals in sequential analysis, logic, symbolism, language, mathematics, abstract reasoning, linguistic memory, rational, analytical, objective, and... looks at parts.

The right hemisphere of the brain is quite interesting. This one deals in visual spatial skills, holistic functioning (seeing the bigger picture), auditory and visual memory, random, intuitive, subjective, and... looks at the whole.

As we can see, there is a variety of ways in which we experience and interpret experience. During ordinary dreaming, the right hemisphere is mostly dominant (however this does not mean that our more rational side doesn't have an input).

During wakefulness and lucid dream states, however, the left hemisphere can dominate. In fact, generally speaking, it is considered to be the most dominant, because, after all, we spend more time awake than asleep. And even when we sleep, it can dominate when it comes to lucid dreaming.

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 05 Jun 2012 05:37
Thinking with words in our minds slows us down. Our brains can process and calculate much faster without them. We only need words if we need to translate our thoughts and communicate with a fellow person. But in our heads, there is no need for words.

However we all think in our heads with words a lot don't we?

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 07 Jun 2012 12:55
by Summerlander
Yes we do! Hehehe! :ugeek:

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 19 Jun 2012 03:32
by houseofleaves
I found this to be really interesting -- In Freud's The Interpretation of Dreams, he talks about how our emotions and thought processes are replaced by visual and auditory images or hallucinations. He talks about and quotes other authors how our waking minds think in concepts while our dreaming minds think in images.

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 26 Jun 2012 08:50
by gamesaucer
I have had some dreams I remember from long ago. I only keep a dream journal since yesterday, so yeah... :roll:
In these dreams (I remember only one, maybe two being lucid) I never had a single thought, as far as I remember.
In real life I usually think in words (as in the sound of a word, not visualizing the image of a written word, so no text) and images.

Re: Do we actually think in words?

Posted: 27 Jun 2012 04:43
in our conscious mind, we attribute meaning to things, and see the small picture with words.
In our dreams, our subconscious takes over, and we see the big picture without words.
When lucid, both are active, and we see and hear words (among other senses), but it is hard to read, write, listen, or do anything of that nature.

Dreams and lucid dreams are in a realm of feelings and visions, not words or text or even mathematics. IT IS JUST A GUT FEELING THAT CANNOT BE DESCRIBED BUT EXISTS AND HAS AN IMPACT ON ALL OUR LIVES.