Why are our dreams so weird?God comprehends they are! Scientists have never been quite sure why we dream, though. One common theory is we dream to help consolidate new moments; the idea seems to check out, because in experiments, if you interrupt people’s dream-sleep, they can’t as easily learn new things or remember new things.
Still, this doesn’t quite describe why our dreams are often so odd. Why would we so often dream about irrelevant things, which seem to have nothing to do with our lives? Why would we have such hallucinogenically nutty dreams? How would that help us retain stuff?
But maybe the weirdness and irrelevance is the point. Maybe dreams need to be odd to be useful.
This is the gist of a new theory by the Tufts University neuroscientist Erik Hoel, which he developed by pondering the ways our brains might be like artificial intelligence neural-nets.
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