Opinion (Giulio Tononi, psychologist, the University of Wisconsin-Madison): “Without sleep, humans become irritable, inefficient and accident prone – but how sleep heals us still isn’t fully understood.
“Psychologist Giulio Tononi of the University of Wisconsin-Madison thinks he has the answer to what our brains are doing as we sleep.
“His theory is that the brain ‘resets’ itself – breaking connections made during the day so that the brain wakes up ‘fresh’ and ready to learn and process more information.
“Brain wave activity is particularly strong during sleep – a sign, Tononi thinks, that the brain is ‘wiping out’ unnecessary impressions.
“The brain literally ‘unwinds’ during sleep – wiping itself clean in much the same way as a computer reboots. …
His understanding of the brain and how it ‘rewires’ itself may also lead to a deeper understanding of what consciousness itself is.
“‘Sleep may be the price you pay so your brain can be plastic the next day,’ says Tononi in one of his papers on the subject.
“His hypothesis is that sleep allows the brain to regroup after a hard day of learning by giving the synapses, which increase in strength during the day, a chance to damp down to baseline levels.
“Sleep may also be important for consolidating new memories, and to allow the brain to ‘forget’ the random, unimportant impressions of the day, so there is room for more learning the next day.”
My Comment: Kabbalah has talked about this work of the brain during sleep for several thousand years. In addition, it explains how the process of wiping off, processing, and storing of information occurs, the reason for dreams as experiences during the day (fast-forwarding of information) and other resets