Lucid Dreams At Night
"Most of us today think of our dreams as odd episodes, as foreign as some ceremonial dance in Tibet. This results in the cutting off of an extremely great and significant portion of the self. We are then no longer able to use much of the wisdom and power of the unconscious." - Rollo May
These techniques are not long-term commitments, as some of the previously described activities were. The following techniques are instead designed to be used just before you go to sleep, and the results of these techniques will immediately follow their use. You can use these at night before you go to bed, or before a nap. In fact, naps often one of our most lucidity lucrative sleeping times. At night, however, the longer you have to sleep, the better. As you learned before, our dream periods repeat and increase in length throughout the night, and so the longer you sleep, the more 'chances' you have at lucidity. Before trying these techniques, you must prepare your mind and body. The exercises you have already worked on have prepared you in the long term, but now you should relax yourself to prepare for the task immediately ahead of you.
Relaxing before using these techniques clears your mind of distractions and allows you to focus on the task at hand. Simple meditation is a good way to relax yourself before using an induction technique. This specific technique was introduced to me in a course at the "Institute for Attitudinal Studies", and I have found it to be quite effective:
Find a position in which you can comfortably remain. Observe your thought process. Simply let your thoughts arise and do not become involved in the content of your thoughts. Notice that you can know you have thoughts, but you are not your thoughts. They are simply a part of the whole. They represent your feelings, memories, anticipations, or speculations, and they call for your attention. As each thought passes, either you attend to it or you do not. While you cannot stop the thoughts themselves, you can prevent yourself from being snared by each one.
As each thought arises, picture it on a white cloud in the sky and watch the cloud pass overhead and out of sight as another thought comes into view on its cloud. Do not try to hold on to the clouds or retain the thought in your mind. Be aware that the thoughts are just objects of our observation, to be noticed and let go. Keep noticing the thoughts and then let them go again and again.
And, of course, once you are really comfortable and at home in pure awareness, then you can let go of the thought of watching your thoughts as well. Meditate for 5 to 10 minutes, or for a period that is comfortable for you.
Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreaming
Developed by Dr. Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D., this is the technique which I, personally, have found most beneficial to my lucidity. It makes use of autosuggestion and visualization in a combination that can have amazing results even after the very first time that you use it.
1. Relax completely and get yourself into a comfortable position in bed.
2. As practiced in the autosuggestion technique, repeat to yourself as you fall asleep:
"I will wake up after every dream period and I will remember my dream" Believe that you will wake up after every dream you have. The very first time I used this technique, I did wake up immediately after each dream period.
3. When you wake up during the night, immediately rouse yourself and write down everything you can remember about your dream. Even if you can barely remember anything, write down how the dream made you feel, or how you felt when you woke up.
4. Lie down again, and as you drift back to sleep, imagine that you are back in the dream that you just had. This time, however, imagine that you saw a dreamsign in your dream and recognized it. Try to think of a dreamsign that fits with the dream and falls under your most successful dreamsign category. As you fall asleep, keep visualizing yourself in your dream, recognizing your dreamsign, and realizing that you are in a dream.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 every time that you awaken during the night, even if your dream was already lucid.
Lucidity from Sleep Paralysis
You may or may not experience the phenomenon of sleep paralysis. During dream sleep, our body shuts off our ability for movement, and we are temporarily paralyzed (in order that our bodies will not act out our dreams). Sometimes, we wake up, arising into the sleepy haze of stage one sleep, but our bodies are still paralyzed. A person experiencing sleep paralysis may feel that they are having "difficultly" in waking up. They are unable to move, and have trouble even in keeping their eyes open, and focusing on the surroundings of their sleeping quarters. This paralysis is a frustrating state for most people who experience it, but it can be taken advantage of in two ways:
Since sleep paralysis is a state very close to dream sleep, a person can slip into a dream in moments when paralyzed, simply by closing their eyes and relaxing. We are conscious in paralysis, and so can set our intention to know that we are dreaming and easily keep this intention through the short transition into our dream.
A possibly even better way to exploit sleep paralysis is the "two bodies" technique. During paralysis, our senses are somewhat distorted in a halfway state between dreaming and waking. We are seeing our actual surroundings, but may feel and hear things from the dreamworld. It is therefore easy to make a transition into a lucid dream without even seeming to close our eyes. This is perhaps the most dramatic technique you will read about in this workbook, because it is apparently similar to the concept of 'astral projection'. In this technique, however, we only dream that we are leaving our bodies.
Once in a state of sleep paralysis, avoid feeling trapped or frightened. Relax, but do not close your eyes. Imagine that you have two bodies: a physical body and a dream body. Your dream body is light, free, and ghostlike, while your physical body is cumbersome, heavy, and awkward. Your dream body is currently trapped inside your physical body, but only because you have not realized that you can free it. Don't try to move your physical body; instead, concentrate on 'floating' your dream self out of the cumbersome physical body. Believe that you can do it and that it is very easy. If you succeed in this effort, you will slip into a dream that you have left your paralyzed body on your bed, and be fully aware that you are dreaming. Be careful not to be fooled: it may seem very realistic in your dream, but you have not actually left your body. Remember to remember that it is 'just a dream'.
Dreamland psychic \ Lucid dreams \ Lucid Dreams At Night