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Advantages of Sleep (Again)

October 23, 2007

I have posted many articles on this blog about sleep. It is my favorite diversionary topic and hence I return to it once again.

I (and many others) have theorized that during many stages of sleep, the soul goes into times of rest and the spirit of man takes over and leads the show. The spirit of man is that part of us that exists in the spirit realm and has direct communication with the Spirit of God (if we are a believer). This probably is true during that stage of sleep called REM (rapid eye movement) sleep because it is during that part of sleep that we dream. It is during dreams that God often spoke to people in the Bible. He also does so today. It is also during dreams that we are made aware of our own fears, insecurities, anger, lust, envy and feelings of being attacked. Since we are not cognitively initiating this, it must be our spirit man doing it.

The soul is a collection of functions and those functions can be so tiresome that the soul more than any other part of us needs a long period of dormancy every day. One of those functions is memory. Here is an interesting article from the NY Times on memory and sleep. During the article, the author says this :

Now, a small group of neuroscientists is arguing that at least one vital function of sleep is bound up with learning and memory. A cascade of new findings, in animals and humans, suggest that sleep plays a critical role in flagging and storing important memories, both intellectual and physical, and perhaps in seeing subtle connections that were invisible during waking — a new way to solve a math or Easter egg problem, even an unseen pattern causing stress in a marriage.

The theory is controversial, and some scientists insist that it’s still far from clear whether the sleeping brain can do anything with memories that the waking brain doesn’t also do, in moments of quiet contemplation.

Yet the new research underscores a vast transformation in the way scientists have come to understand the sleeping brain. Once seen as a blank screen, a metaphor for death, it has emerged as an active, purposeful machine, a secretive intelligence that comes out at night to play — and to work — during periods of dreaming and during the netherworld chasms known as deep sleep.

The article goes on to show that memory improves but is also augmented with deeper understanding as we sleep. To me, this simply underscores that there is much more to us than just our souls. And when we sleep, that other part of our unseen being, the spirit man, is brought to life and shows its colors.

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