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Stranger Than Fiction: A Real "Dream Killer" Claims Scores of Lives Every Year

Updated at: 01/28/2013 10:45 AM
By: Reelz Channel

Dreams have fascinated and bewildered humanity for millennia, yet even with the incredible technology at our disposal today, we are little closer to understanding them than were the Sumerians in Mesopotamia who were among the first to chronicle their dreams some 5000 years ago. What exactly are dreams and what significance are they to our waking lives? Are they merely a form of entertainment to keep our brains from getting bored while we slumber? Are they complex coded scenarios created by our brain to help work out our day-to-day problems or regulate our emotions? Are they memories of previous lives, as those who believe in reincarnation contend, or possibly glimpses at alternate realities? What happens if we die in one of our dreams?

In most movies about the subject, a dream death equates to death in real life, but that’s just Hollywood capitalizing on our fears, right? Maybe not. A real "dream killer" has claimed the lives of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of otherwise healthy young men while they were blissfully asleep, inspiring one of the most iconic killers in the history of cinema.