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No. 24: Nov-Dec 1982

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The Cinema Of The Mind

Many curious mental states occur during sleep, most of which we cannot begin to explain. Horne homes in on REM sleep (Rapid Eye Movements sleep), during which:

(1) Both heart and respiration rates become irregular; (2) The flow of blood to the brain increases 50% over relaxed waking levels; (3) Body temperature regulation becomes impaired; and (4) Blood flow to the kidneys and urine production drop markedly.

REM sleep is thought to be "primitive" from an evolutionary standpoint because body temperature control is "reptilian." Horne also discusses REM and normal sleep in the context of nightmares, sleeptalking, sleepwalking, night terrors, narcolepsy, and sleep paralysis.

(Horne, Jim; "The Cinema of the Mind," New Scientist, 95:627, 1982.)

Comment. All in all, sleep is a complex phenomenon. We know we need it, but why? A really efficient organism would run 24 hours a day -- like a computer.

From Science Frontiers #24, NOV-DEC 1982. 1982-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987