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One aspect of day dreaming seems to be overlooked. and that is when it is deliberately employed. For example I have found it very useful especially when studying historical or sociological subjects. I ave found it useful to imagine myself as being alive in some past time or situation and have acted either as an observer or a participant. It is useful in understanding the ‘psychology’ or frame of mind of past or other people and understand why they have to act the way they do or did. Such an action as I have suggested here cold probably also be used by contemporary persons to understand te actions or thoughts of people of other countries – or even other neighborhoods.
An opinion: I think your emphasis on “mindwandering” is too limited. People do deliberately give birth to daydreams.
Your point is important and is at the heart of one of the main questions on mind wandering. I have argued in several papers that this role of intentions in mind wandering has been misinterpreted: Essentially if the brain is going to go to the length of generating a stream of spontaneous thoughts you can bet that that these are at least partially an aim of the mental system. Check out some of the papers in the theoretical section of my web site to see what I mean…
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Mind-wandering is a product of spontaneous, internally generated thought