Lucid dreaming and the butterfly effect

April 8, 2008

I’ve visited the question of the butterfly dream before on this blog. It’s relevance to lucid dreaming has until now been largely left as an exercise for the reader.

Today we’re going to revisit it briefly because there is another important aspect to the question posed by Chuang Tzu:

Reality.

Paraphrased, the question put by the Chinese philosopher is this: “If I dream that I am a butterfly, how can I be sure which “me” (man or butterfly) exists in reality, and which one is merely a dream?”

Without delving too deeply into the question of what “reality” actually is, let’s take a look at the central theme as it relates to you learning how to lucid dream.

lucid dreaming - butterfly girl

Consciousness

Learning how to lucid dream often introduces people to dream journaling and reality checks. I’ve spoken about this before.

The point is simply this, although it may take a while to sink in:

Whether you’re the man or the butterfly, your reality is whatever you’re paying attention to.

The reason people fail to have a lucid dream despite their best efforts probably has something to do with what they pay attention to most of the time.

Think about it. Right now are you really paying attention or are you just skimming over the text on this page. Did you even make it this far? Does your mind jump from one thing to the next?

Discipline

Most people unfortunately lack the mental discipline to make lucid dreaming work for them. Unless you can direct your consciousness to pay attention it won’t matter if you’re a man or a butterfly. You’ll be so caught up in your internal dialogue and following your mind as it wanders that you’ll miss the lucid dreaming forest for the metaphorical trees.


Technorati Tags:
, , , ,

The Top 5 Lucid Dreaming myths

October 30, 2007


For as long as I’ve been teaching people how to lucid dream, I’ve encountered people who hold some (or all) of these common misconceptions about it.

In the interests of education and public service I’m here to clear them up. Discovering how to lucid dream is easy, fun and once you experience for yourself how enjoyable it is, I guarantee you’ll be wishing you’d known about it sooner.

Myth #1: “Learning how to lucid dream is hard.”

This is definitely the most common misconception I find. Learning how to lucid dream is easy. So easy, in fact, that more likely than not you already know how to do it.

Myth #2: “Lucid dreaming is just some weird new-age thing.”

Far from being a recent phenomenon, lucid dreaming has been known about and practiced in one form or another for many centuries.

Myth #3: “I don’t remember my dreams, so I’ll never be able to lucid dream.”

Another very common reason people give for why not experimenting with lucid dreaming is their inability to recall dreams. Dream recall needs conscious focus. Most people don’t recall their dreams.

More importantly, the ability to recall dreams is not a requirement for lucid dreaming. It’s merely one of many suggested starting points.

how to lucid dream
M.C. Escher – “Another World”

Myth #4: “It’s probably not that much fun // worth all the effort”

It’s also common for people dismiss lucid dreaming as a waste of time. Going to great lengths to learn how to lucid dream in order to spend a couple of minutes flying probably does seem like a waste of time – if you’ve never had a lucid dream before. Once people have experienced full consciousness inside a dream state they regularly report it to be far superior to any waking-life experience or mind-altering drug available.

Myth #5: “It takes too long to master”

The final barrier for most people is the mistaken belief that discovering how to lucid dream takes months – a commitment that many are unwilling or unable to make. Even for the raw novice it is possible to achieve a lucid dream in a mere of 3-7 attempts. Some people can even do it on their first attempt!


If you don’t believe me, see for yourself. Get started now with the lucid dreaming kit!

Technorati tags:

|| ||


How to lucid dream: go WILD!

October 9, 2007

Have you attempted to learn how to lucid dream and grown frustrated with continually poor results? Have you tried all the standard “how to lucid dream” techniques and found that you just wake up in the morning with little or no dream recall? Are you beginning to think that you may never have a lucid dream?

Don’t give up: Perhaps this might help.

The bulk of the advice given to people who are learning how to lucid dream is based on the traditional methods. You’ve probably heard them before (I’ve even published them below): You work on developing increased dream recall, regular reality testing and a recognizing your dream triggers. Eventually this will all lead to a lucid dream.

Eventually.

And it’s true. It does work. The problem is that it takes time and effort and the results can take weeks, if not months to show up. Many people give up on their quest to learn how to lucid dream with the mistaken belief that this is the only way to induce a lucid dream. It’s not.

So let’s get WILD.

WILD, or “Wake Induced Lucid Dream” is a totally different way to trigger a lucid dream. All you have to do is train yourself to stay alert and conscious as your body flips the switch from “awake” to “asleep”.

That’s it. No dream journals, no need to memorize a string of your different dream triggers or hope that a reality check might one day cause you to recognize that you’re dreaming.

If you want to know how to lucid dream the easy way, this is it. It’s as easy as learning to meditate.

meditate

It can be a little tricky to master. For the first few nights you may find that you simply fall asleep, or your focus my drift away. The key is to practice. The great thing about learning how to lucid dream using this method is that there’s no “homework”. It’s totally experiential, and you only have to do it when you’re going to sleep.

Learning how to lucid dream is all about finding the best method for you. To discover more about the WILD technique, or to find your own personal gateway into the world of lucid dreams, secure your copy of the lucid dream kit today!

Be sure to subscribe to this blog for more information on Wake Induced Lucid Dreams along with other ways to learn how to lucid dream.


Top 10 tips on how to lucid dream

September 24, 2007

For those of you who like to get straight to the good stuff, I’ve compiled a list of the top 10 tools that you can use to learn how to lucid dream. These are so good that you probably won’t need to use any more than two or three before you start having some degree of lucidity.

1. Take naps.

Napping during the day not only means you’ll be less tired (increasing likelihood of lucid dreams), but it gives you an extra chance to practice.

2. Take more notice of your surroundings.

If you stumble through your waking life in a haze, make it a habit to take more notice of the external world. Many people spend a lot of their day with an internal focus. If you habitually pay attention to the sights, sounds and colors of the world you’ll increase the likelihood of spotting something out of place in your dream world.

3. Listen to music as you sleep.

Music has the ability to trigger just about any emotion you can think of. Play a CD or run your iPod through a set of speakers bedside your bed as you sleep. Find some music that triggers strong memories or emotions and intersperse those tracks with relaxing background music. Create a playlist and let it loop as you sleep through the night.

4. Get a voice-activated tape recorder.

Unless you snore heavily, a voice-activated tape recorder put on your bedside table will be able to record any sounds you make during the night. If you’re talking during your dreams or making any sounds, playing back the tape the next morning will help you recall dreams any you may have otherwise forgotten. Not only will this help you learn how to lucid dream, it might give the definitive answer to whether or not you snore once and for all!

5. Eat spicy foods

Consuming foods with strong flavors or spices has an interesting effect on the body, just as taking some drugs or medications can do. These can trigger unusual or vivid dreams, both of which are a good thing if you’re learning how to lucid dream and trying to remember and control your dreams.



“The Dream” – Pablo Picasso (1932)

6. Use affirmations.

Rather than repeat “I am going to have a lucid dream”, try an affirmation like “I recognize and control my dreams” or “I know how to lucid dream and can control my dreams at will”. Write it on a sticky note and put it somewhere you’ll see it during the day like in your car or on your computer monitor. Repeat it before you go to bed each night.

7. EFT.

You dreams represent issues that your subsconcious is processing. You don’t need to understand your dreams to use them for healing. A simple acupressure technique called the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) can be used to clear these issues both while lucid dreaming and when awake. Learning the basics of EFT is free and you can also work with an experienced EFT Practitioner if you need some help healing these dream issues.

8. Set your alarm

Wake yourself up during the night. Get out of bed and walk around for ten to thirty minutes before returning to sleep. This is similar to napping. The return to sleep from a recent awake an conscious state leaves what can best be described as “consciousness remnants” in your dream state that makes it easier to lucid dream. This is called WILD, or Wake Induced Lucid Dreaming. The alarm is best set for 3-4 hours into your sleep – the period when REM sleep usually occurs.

9. Do a reality check when you wake up.

Sometimes you’ll awaken within a dream and be still asleep. Great horror movie fodder, to be sure. For lucid dreamers, the fear or concern is that the recognition of a dream may result in the dreamer waking up. It’s possible that “waking up” will be a false awakening when it really represents a loss of control over the dream as the unconscious mind takes over. Get into the habit of doing reality checks every time you wake up, and you can prevent this from happening.

10. Get help!

If you’re struggling to do it alone, spend a few bucks and invest in some professional tools that will help you. Think of it like spending money on a DVD that you can make into any movie you like! Grab the lucid dreaming kit today and you won’t even need to spend extra on popcorn!

Finally, dont give up! Persistence is also an important part of learning how to lucid dream. Not everyone will achieve success with the same tools or in the same time. It’s important to recognize that a dream is usually a conversation with your unconscious mind. To know how to lucid dream is understand how to be in tune with yourself. That means paying more attention to things in your waking life that you normally do not.


Technorati tags:
|| || ||