For full article with pictures and many other interesting posts,. click here. Or just read on below! :)
For those who don’t know what lucid dreaming is, I’ll provide a quick explanation. Imagine going to bed, sleeping, and then dreaming as normal. While you are in your dream, fighting off a band of hovering elephants on wheels, you realize that this makes completely no sense and come to the conclusion that you must be dreaming. Suddenly you feel a rush of excitement, for indeed you are dreaming, and then slowly your dream fades and you wake up.
In the above elephant-y scenario you realize that you are dreaming, but you wake up. Becoming “lucid” is becoming “aware” that you are dreaming. The fun part is staying asleep and doing whatever the hell it is you want to do; for indeed you do control EVERYTHING that goes on.
Now! How can you do this? How can you get from not remembering your dreams at all, to getting too excited when lucid, and then eventually to flying into space, going through a few black holes, and talking to your long lost love from a past-life (all of which I have done).
So here it is, the answer to all of your problems…. the list.
1. Start a dream journal!
Leave a pad and pen next to your bed so every time you wake up, you can write down your dreams. Yes, you dream every night, and yes, I am sure you have all heard this before, but seriously this is a must and the FIRST step in lucid dreaming. As far as you know, you could be lucid dreaming every night and just not remembering it. When you “dream” you go through at least five, if not more, completely different scenarios, usually only remembering the last one if that.
2. Start Meditating!
If unfamiliar, for a fantastic guide on meditation, click here. You may be asking why I have meditation in this article, seeing as it has nothing to do with dreaming. It may not have a lot to do with dreaming, but it has A LOT to do with being “in your body”, accepting what is, and keeping your attention when it drifts. The benefits of meditation go far beyond lucid dreaming, but for this articles sake, it is simply for staying asleep and lucid while dreaming. Meditation will help you become lucid, not get too excited once finally lucid, and help you remember that you are dreaming, for forgetting is normal.
3. Start “Reality Checking” REGULARLY
Every hour or so, think to yourself, I could be dreaming right now and not even know it. Next, look at either the clock or some words somewhere, look away, and then quickly look back. If the clock/words changed, you are dreaming, if not, you’re awake. Make this a habit and eventually it will carry over to your dreams and soon you will be lucid dreaming every other night. :)
4. Spin To Stay Lucid
It might sound silly, but if meditation does not work and you still get over-excited, (especially if it is your first time) start spinning like the Earth, round and round, when you first become lucid. Not only that, but rub your hands together. You may or may not come out of it still in the dream but just in a different scenario. The meditation I mentioned above will help you remember you are dreaming once you change scenarios. Each “scenario” or “scene” throughout your dreams tries to lock you in. Either you become apart of the “play” and join the act, or you take off your mask and “wake up” (but not actually). This analogy can be applied to waking life as well.
5. Wake Back To Bed (WBTB)
If you are becoming frustrated with the above, pick a night where you don’t mind losing a very small amount of sleep and set your alarm to five hours after you fall asleep. Go to sleep and then let your alarm wake you up. Wake up and walk around your house thinking about lucid dreaming, maybe even read this article again. After doing so, go back to bed and BAM! You will most likely enter the dream world and be fully lucid. If not, it will come eventually. This is definitely one of the better methods. If you become too awake after walking around and can’t fall back asleep, perhaps just set the alarm, wake up, sit up, and then as you fall asleep repeat in your head “I will be aware I am dreaming”. Also, if you just left a dream when waking, try to visualize that same dream scenario. You might “pop” back into it fully aware.
Remember, practice makes perfect. You won’t lucid dream if you aren’t practicing this regularly, unless of course you already lucid dream naturally; some people have been doing it their entire lives without even knowing it. One girl I know lucid dreams every night and thought everyone else did too. When she heard that most people are unaware that they are dreaming, she said she now realizes why everyone is all depressed! Anyways, keep at it, have fun, and let your imagination run wild! :)
I like your method :) I use those same steps to become lucid in my own dreams. I never did reality checks, but I was/am always wondering if this reality could be a dream.
Something that I concluded in my own studies is that lucid dreaming has a lot to do with memory. Keeping a very detailed, in depth journal is essential. The easier it is for you to remember your dreams from your waking life, the easier it will be to remember your waking life from your dreams. Your memories of “reality” are the only things you have to compare or reference to your experiences in a dream. You can always wonder if the reality your experiencing is a dream or not, but you can never know without memory of past experiences.
I made a post a while back about my “Dreaming Soul Theory”. Check it out if your interested: https://www.highexistence.com/topic/dreaming-soul-theory/
I recently watch Waking Life too. Fucking love that movie.
Last night i realized I was dreaming and I was like SHIT and I was about to run shit lol but I just woke up but didn’t open my eyes, and there was like a geometrical pattern/flower thing that was like vibrating behind my eye lids it was crazy
@cristinelizabeth, it happens to me before i sleep when im tired but just cant sleep. i just stare in the dark and see object forming on the traces of other real objects in the room. i can see people, animals, real life objects… just morphing and changing into some new ‘cartoon’. its crazy :P
@bono95zg, Yeahh ! it’s fun to chase all the shapes around. The less you think about it , the more it happens. But I was so mad , cause before I fell asleep I was like I am going to lucid dream.. and then i realized I was in a dream and got super stoked and joke woke up hahah. Have you ever lucid ?
Great post brother! This is an awesome topic. One that’s on the frontline of the revolution of consciousness.
There is so much to learn from this process. It is an amazing arena for self-discovery.
It takes a great deal of discipline and perspective to progress with Lucid Dreaming. But it’s a challenge everyone should attempt.
Our dreams are the wild frontier in which our Ego runs free. So be able to enter that world and observe oneself like this is incredibly important. When we are awake our Ego lurks in the dark woods of our subconscious, whispering controlling directions and hypnotizing, distorted perspectives of self. Its hard to know what is what when we are awake.
But when we dream our Ego leaps out of the shadows and projects itself in it’s entirety on the world of the dream. If we can enter our conscious self into this arena we can observe our Ego and learn its behaviors and desires. Then when we wake we have a better understanding of how to handle and train our Ego.
This concept of Ego Observation is, I believe the intermediate level of Lucid Dreaming.
The basic level is more carefree. It’s just our conscious mind running around in a fantasy land. Ignorant and oblivious of the substance and relevance of the world it is in. The best we get out of this level is Deja Vu. But it is a necessary level to reach. We must learn to crawl before we can walk, and then run.
The Advanced level of Lucid Dreaming is far more complex. I, myself have only reached the Intermediate level. So what is beyond that, I don’t have personal context to provide. But I believe it has near limitless potential. A horizon we should continue to chase!
Am I alone in having a fear of not being able to tell dream from reality?
I have very vivid dreams, and often I have a memory that sometimes I can’t remember if it was a dream or not. This freaks me out. Is this something to be afraid of? Would this happen more frequently with lucid dreaming?
Also, when falling asleep at night I catch myself having crazy thoughts, and realize that I am starting to dream (which is why my thoughts don’t make sense). Is that some type of lucid dreaming, or the beginnings of it?
I’ve always wondered…
I could always control my dreams the following night from a good night on ecstacy, always. I never though much of it until I saw these posts about lucid dreaming. Now I’m trying to do it all again without the drugs, I had to stop the drugs for various reasons.
@blankey, Why does that make sense for it to appear like that?
and you mean this , right? http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/08/Flower-of-Life-small.svg/304px-Flower-of-Life-small.svg.png
Yeah it was like the Flower of Life, and it reminded me of the sound wave experiment w sand when they raise the vibrations and the sand makes different shapes the higher the frequency
@chestnut, That could be your beginning of Lucid Dreaming, yes. That sounds like the start of conscious awareness. At first it is like spotting a familiar car whilst standing on the side of a speeding highway. You know what it is, but as soon as you do it’s gone again. You have to experience this many times to be able to build up the discipline needed for the next step. Nothing you can consciously do to make this happen. You will just subconsciously develop this skill. Once you have, you will the. Be able to spot the car and follow it amongst the traffic. This is when you become consciously aware not only that you are dreaming, but that you are IN the dream.
The third step is then being able to grab hold of the car and ride on it. This is when you go from being IN the dream, to stepping forward and participating in the dream. You transition from a conscious spectator, to a conscious player.
Once you have reached this stage you are ready to start exploring your dreams. But don’t rush yourself, this will all progress at the rate your brain can grow (different for everyone).
Our brains work much faster when asleep. Our minds can not operate at this speed. Our intuition can! So you just have to allow the natural growth and transition between mind and intuition occur.
The fact you are already slightly aware of all this, is a good sign you are on your way.
Trust your intuition. It will protect and guide you. Your mind won’t! It can lose itself in a dream. Your intuition won’t. It will always bring you back to reality.
@sambas, Good decision. True Lucid Dreaming can only be achieved drug-free. Otherwise you are messing with your brain’s natural abilities. With drugs you may be able to get there, but you’re not creating the discipline of consciousness to do it.
But now you know what it’s like, you will have the context for your sub-conscious to start looking for.
@monkeyzazu, Great post my friend. I left you a comment :)
@cristinelizabeth, Definitely. Man… life is fucking trippy.
I might be high, but perhaps… just perhaps..
Matter, this experience, is simply a frequency in which our brain interprets as “the universe”. Maybe the universe is just one station in an infinite radio dial that you create to simply play with yourself, for it is all you.
@chestnut, Sure, you could be afraid of it. You can be afraid of anything. As long as you turn away and don’t stand up and stare it straight in its face with “light” of your consciousness, fear will be there.
Life’s an idea. You are an idea. Everything is an idea, which stems from “the mind”. It’s all really nothing. It’s all simply this right here and now with no preconceived notions, no ideas, no nothing, for it is nothing.
@zencowboy, Definitely. The dream realm is a projection of yourself and all of its entirety. All fears (which are never actually there), all notions you have of who you are (which are almost always false), and all of your love (which is all there is). The “ego”, the “act”, the “play” that you write tries to steer you away from what you are, from “waking up”, becoming lucid (in both realities). But it is necessary. The ego is a process. Embrace the ego. Watch the ego, do not judge, for that is the ego. Watch it all unfold, right now. There is NO other time to watch. Just… NOW.
@zencowboy, @sambas, Never tried ecstasy but with marijuana I have found I actually have less lucid dreams/even remember my dreams. Perhaps it’s because I didn’t give it much effort when high but who knows.
@zencowboy, Definitely. It’s funny, I wrote this article when I haven’t been lucid dreaming a lot. I just haven’t really given it the time of day. I did it so much a year ago I just bored with it almost. It’s weird, I seem to be writing all of these articles almost directing towards myself when I am not doing it. Like my first article entitled, “Do what YOU want to do”, was during a time when I was not doing what I wanted to be doing. I was going to college just to “make the parents happy”. I since have dropped out and am going to Thailand in 8 months then helping build a sustainable community in Montreal.
@young-buddha, They are indistinguishable so yes, I have a bit. Mainly just randomly throughout the day. Of course, whenever I do this I just do a reality check and make sure I am dreaming or not. This is one of the main things that can help with lucid dreaming. Along with a dream journal and meditation.