Alternatives to Psychedelics – Lucid Dreaming
By: John Constantine
Funny, I think this is the first PPP file in which a disclaimer would make absolutly no sense whatsoever… Once you master these techniques, which takes a long time, you might find this better than LSD, both mentally and legally. This the first volume is on Lucid Dreaming. Meditation, OBE’s, and other stuff is forthcoming.
Lucid Dreaming is the act of entering into a dream with full conscious awareness or gaining this awareness in the midst of a dream. Once you realize that your dream ‘is but a dream’ you can begin to control it in magnificent and fascinating ways. Extremely proficient Lucid Dreamers can use the Lucid Dream as a stepping stone to an even more interesting state — the out-of-body state. (If there is a next file by me it will be on OBE’s)
Most of the information I will be presenting in this file has been condensed from the three sources I learned from. A book by Stephen LaBerge, a Stanford research psychologist, called Lucid Dreaming The power of Being awake and aware in your dreams. A book called Lucid Dreams in 30 Days The Creative sleep Program by Keith Harary and Pamela Weintraub, and an article in Omni magazine (I forgot which month and I have since lost the mag).
Before one can get to the actual Lucid Dreaming state one must begin to pay more attention to dreams. A dream journal filled out first thing EVERY morning is ideal. You could also keep a dictaphone by your bed and before going to sleep tell yourself to wake up after each dream so that you can record it. Merely keeping a record of your dreams is not enought though. You must analyze each one; they often hold important messages. A good book on analysis is Ann Faradays, The Dream Game. Once you ha ve gotten a message from a dream follow through on it. If you dream about a surprise test next thursday in Group Sex 101 for instance, you should study a little bit harder. There may be no surprise test coming up but your subconscious may be telling you to work harder in order to succeed. If you record then ignore your dreams you are telling your subconscious they are not important and are drastically reducing your chances of Luciditiy.
Once you acquire good dream recall go over the past few weeks dreams. Look for any instantaneous shifts in perspective, incongruities in time and space. During your waking hours start checking for similar incongruities. (If you don’t understand what I mean by incongruities then I reccomend reading an article called Welcome to the Dreamtime in issue # 28 of Magical Blend magazine.) Tell yourself before falling to sleep that you will notice these incongruities while they are taking place. (It may help to do this in a light state of self-hypnosis) Eventually you will spot one and then you will realize “Hey, I’m dreaming! Holy shit, this is kic…” If you get too excited at success you will wake up.
Now that you’ve become conscious the problem is keeping alert. Constantly do things like look at the backs of your hands. If you feel the dream begining to fall apart it helps to twirl about in circles (at least it does for me).
The method above is great except for the fact that by using it you cannot enter the lucid dreaming state at will. You just have to be lucky enough to spot some oddity in a dream. The next method is harder but better.
Find some thought or image to cling to as you go asleep. While keeping your image in mind, observe your mind as you fall asleep. Eventually you will enter into a dream with full consciousness.
Practice makes almost perfect but takes a long time. It’s worth it though. Once you become proficient you can explore all sorts of strange things. For example in one of my dreams I wandered through a bowl of Lucky Charms. Each grain of cereal was like a mountain and every marshmellow vibrated with intense color. I made my dog start lapping them up. She lapped me up. I then traveled through my dogs innards. I’ve never had an experience that intense using LSD.
Once you’ve acquires some of these basic the important thing to do is experiment. Find new methods that work for you as an individual. AND PLEASE if you come up with a really great way of inducing a lucid dream or if you just have a really intense one leave me some mail so I can include it in a future file.
I’ve barely touched upon any of the significant points on Lucid Dreaming. If you are interested in acquiring this ability I HIGHLY reccomend Stephen LaBerge’s book. It has sections on the history and on more technical aspects. It’s in paperback and you should find it in any regular bookstore for $3.95 or if you just have a question then you can leave comments to me at one of the systems listed below as ‘John Constantine’.