Consciouseness And Altered States (Part 1)


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Consciouseness And Altered States (Part 1)

  1. 1. Consciousness and <br />Altered States<br />
  2. 2. Consciousness – refers to different levels of awareness of one’s thoughts and feelings. It may include creating images in one’s mind, following one’s thought processes, or having unique emotional experiences, all of which are part of consciousness. <br />
  3. 3. Controlled Processes<br /><ul><li>activities that require full awareness, alertness and concentration to reach some goal. </li></li></ul><li>Automatic Processes<br /><ul><li> activities that require little awareness, take minimal attention, and do not interfere with other ongoing activities.</li></li></ul><li>Daydreaming<br /><ul><li> is an activity that requires a low level of awareness, often occurs during automatic processes, and involves fantasizing or dreaming while awake.</li></li></ul><li>Altered States<br /><ul><li> results from any number of procedures such as meditation, psychoactive drugs, hypnosis, or sleep deprivation, to produce an awareness that differs from normal consciousness. </li></li></ul><li>Sleeps and Dreams<br /><ul><li>sleep consists of five different levels of awareness, consciousness, and responsiveness, as well as different levels of physiological arousal . The deepest state of sleep borders on unconsciousness. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Dreaming is a unique consciousness in which we are asleep but experience a variety of astonishing visual, auditory, and tactile images, often connected in strange ways and often in color. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li> When we are faced with very threatening wishes or desires, especially if they are sexual or aggressive, we automatically defend our self-esteem by placing these psychologically threatening thoughts into a mental place called “unconscious” from which these thoughts cannot be voluntary recalled. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Cognitive unconscious consists of mental and emotional processes that we are unaware of but that bias and influence our conscious feelings, thoughts and behavior. </li></li></ul><li>Stages of sleep- refer to distinctive changes in electrical activity of the brain and accompanying physiological responses of the body that occur as you pass through different phases of sleep.<br />Alpha Stage- before entering sleep, you briefly pass through a relaxed and drowsy state.<br />
  4. 4. Stage 1- the lightest stage of sleep. In it, you gradually lose responsiveness to stimuli and experience drifting thoughts and images.<br />Stage 2- marks the beginning of what we know as sleep.<br />Stage 3 & 4- which is often considered as the deepest sleep because it is the most difficult from which to be awakened. <br />
  5. 5. REM Sleep- It stands for ‘rapid eye movement’ because your eyes move rapidly back and forth behind closed lids. During REM, your body is physiologically aroused, but all your voluntary muscles are paralyzed, called ‘paradoxical sleep’. REM sleep is highly associated with dreaming. <br />
  6. 6. Theories of sleep<br />Repair Theory-suggests that during the day deplete key factors in our brain or body that are replenished or repaired by sleep. - says that sleep is primarily a restorative process. <br />Adaptive Theory-suggests that sleep evolved because it prevented early humans and animals from wasting energy and exposing themselves to the dangers of nocturnal predators. <br />
  7. 7. Two Major effects of sleep deprivation<br /><ul><li>Effects on the Body- sleep deprivation, even 11 days, has minimal effects on a person’s heart rate, blood pressure, and hormone secretions. However, sleep deprivation does affect our immune system, which is the body’s defense against viruses, infections, and other toxic agents.
  8. 8. Effects on the Nervous System- sleep deprivation has consistently been shown to interfere with tasks that require vigilance and concentration. Sleep deprivation causes irritability and unhappiness. </li></li></ul><li>“Dream Interpretation”<br /><ul><li>Freud and Dreams Freud's theory of dreams says that we have a ‘censor’ that protects us from realizing threatening and unconscious desires or wishes, especially those involving sex and aggression.
  9. 9. Extensions of waking life – therapist believe that dreams are extensions of waking life. The theory that dreams are extension of waking life means that our dreams reflect the same thoughts, fears, concerns, problems, and emotions present awake. </li></li></ul><li>Activation-Synthesis Theory<br />According to J. Alan Hobson and Robert McCarley, dreaming represents the random and meaningless activity of nerve cells in the brain. <br />According to this theory, an area in the brain, called the ‘Pons’, sends millions of random nerve impulses to the cortex. <br />
  10. 10. Typical dreams have the following characteristics:<br /><ul><li>They have several characters
  11. 11. They involve motions such as running and walking
  12. 12. They are more likely to take place indoors than out
  13. 13. They are filled with visual sensations but rarely include sensations of taste, smell or pain.</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>They seem bizarre because they disregard physical laws by flying or falling without injury
  14. 14. They may be recurrent
  15. 15. They frequently involve emotions of anxiety or fear than joy or happiness
  16. 16. They rarely involve sexual encounters and are almost never about sexual intercourse
  17. 17. Rarely can we dream about something we intend to
  18. 18. They are usually in color in sighted people and are auditory or tactile in blind people. </li>