Here's an interesting video about dream characters and lucid dreaming:
Recently, I had this interesting conversation with someone from Rebecca Turner's World of Lucid Dreaming forum:
I don't believe they have a mind of their own.
Fair enough. For me it also remains a hypothesis. But the aforementioned scientific experiments about brain hemispheres and split-brain subjects do suggest that the one area of the brain we thought was completely unconscious did communicate and exhibited more awareness than a toddler. So is it possible that at least certain characters concocted by the subconscious could also exhibit the same ostensible awareness? And if so, how conscious are they? Should we regard them as we do another person in waking life?
It seems to make sense to me that we should at least extend the same courtesy from our theory of mind. Remember that in ordinary dreams we are often clueless about the environment whilst other characters appear to be 'more with it'. In lucid dreams, the table turns; all of a sudden you become a god and, at the moment when clarity is acquired, you often look around to find a world commonly populated by dream mannequins---characters drained of the éLAN VITALE they once possessed as lively animations. Did the lucid god hijack their KNOWING?
Is consciousness dispersed during ordinary dreams to subsequently become centralised in the dreamer when lucidity is attained? If this is true, I also wonder about the neuroscience behind it. I'd love to see how neuronic activity reflects this. It seems feasible to me that consciousness fluctuates between brain hemispheres during dreamful sleep.
Our brain is THAT powerful and able to make these convincing characters.
Whatever the case, this is undeniably true. The brain can make anything convincing. Have someone attempt to clasp your hands together whilst you pull them apart against his will. Keep manually warring in this manner for a couple of minutes and then ask your opponent to let go of your hands; have them as though you're holding something. It will seem as though you are holding an invisible balloon. Some area of your brain assumes the reason why you were avoiding clasping your hands is that some obstacle was in their way. The brain filled in a gap. It made something up instead of accepting the truth that it was nothing. And it does this all the time during our waking hours. In our sleep, it practically has a big void of no sensory input---an opportunity to create worlds from scratch and perceive them from a range of perspectives!
It is totally related to how you see the world and what you've experienced. If someone was living in a cave his whole life and never talked to other people, he would definitely see extraordinary DCs.
Of course he would. Even if those DCs came in the form of peculiar cave shadows or rock monsters, they would BE there. The cave dweller's water reflection would be sufficient to inspire the creation of dream clones.