Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Tricks of the Trade

A few years ago I really got into the idea of lucid dreaming (before 'Waking Life' BTW). After reading about it for a bit I put a few of the techniques into practice. The main points are first recognizing you are in a dream, and secondly, staying in the dream after that recognition.

The first part is done through a couple ways, a big part recognizing motifs and patterns in your dreams. (For instance, 'Fiona', because even though she inhabits my dream life, unfortunately she does not show up in my waking life.) To do this, of course you have to remember your dreams. As to that, just mindfulness will work wonders. At least in my case, I wake up a few times during the night. At this point you can either say to yourself, I'm going back to sleep, in which case you will forget that dream, and probably the fact that you were awake at all. If instead, you decide to make the dream concrete, by pondering it, figuring out the story, grabbing all the fragments together, it will be much more likely to be remembered later. I actually do have a pen and pad by the bed, but that's a pretty recent occurrence (coinciding with the start of this blog), and jot down the dreams now. (I can't really read my own writing, but the writing makes it even more concrete in your head).

BTW, the other tricks to figure out if you are in a dream, are taking a look at a piece of writing, or a clock twice. Writing isn't stable in dreams. I spent awhile doing double takes on clocks, or carrying around a note that said, 'This is not a dream.'

Eventually I got bored of lucid dreaming, because I would just spend the whole time flying, and couldn't get much else to happen. I think it's because I can't visualize things when I'm in a conscious state.


Blogger peth said...

Oh, lucid dreaming is fascinating and sexy. I would like to do this, but my dream world is out of reach.

5:21 AM  
Blogger ratty said...

lucid dreaming sounds fun, but scary. i am terrified of not being able to wake myself up.

9:26 AM  
Blogger fiona said...

eww. you're so cool. you lucid dreamed before it was cool to lucid dream. and i'm cool because i turned lucid dream into a verb before anyone else turned it into a verb. i actually remembered my dream last night. you must be rubbing off on me.

10:59 AM  
Blogger lipitor said...

You dreamed that I was rubbing one off on you? Vaguely erotic.

11:47 AM  
Blogger fiona said...

recycling jokes from listserv posts? so sad.

1:48 PM  
Blogger lipitor said...

You haven't figured out that I only recycle things from the Internet? Google is my Cyrano de Bergerac.

2:00 PM  

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