Lucid dreaming: A Bridge to Other Realities
by Adam Palmer
In this article, Adam Palmer challenges you to take your dreaming practise further. Beyond the initial fun and excitement lucid dreaming is something far more profound.
The difference between a “lucid” dream and a regular dream is simply in our level of awareness. Within a lucid dream, we know that we are dreaming, and are free to fly through walls, practise new hobbies and meet new people.
As a regular lucid dreamer and OBE practitioner, I will say that a clear and vivid lucid dream is one of the most powerful and transformative experiences that a person can have. You don’t need to believe me, or take anyone’s word on their experiences – everyone can lucid dream, and you can verify and experience this directly. All too often however, I find people getting stuck in the early and even advanced stages of dreaming, with the idea that slaying dragons, throwing fire balls and flying through friends’ houses is all that lucid dreaming has to offer.
Acquire the tools you need for lucid dreaming
Building the tools within your skillset through playing out different scenarios, exploring the dream world, practicing different induction techniques and finding out what works best for you provides a very solid foundation. It’s absolutely essential though that you don’t get stuck trying to perfect induction techniques or analysing and debating terminology and experiences. The phrase, “can’t see the wood for the trees,” comes to mind.
I prefer to consider the dreaming world as a launch pad to other realities. My experience has led me to the understanding that we exist in a multidimensional universe. As sentient beings, we are able to adjust our “receivers” to tune in and out of different frequencies. As we have been born into this reality, our “receivers” are strongly fixed on the world in which we live. Our living and breathing bodies anchor us to this reality.
Our receivers phase out all through the day such as when we day dream, relax, experience hypnosis and trance, and so on. Our nightly sleep is our mandatory “phase out” as we spend time existing in another reality. This period is essential for our bodies and minds, as our cells rapidly regenerate and we wake up refreshed. Moreover, sleep and dream are both physically essential; with even a night or two without sleep, our reaction times slow, and we become measurably physically ill. Now, people don’t get permanently lost in day dreams, or in sleep. As I said, owing to our existence in this reality, our being is anchored to this frequency of waking reality. We are able to shift our receivers or to coin Castaneda’s phase, our “assemblage point.”
Everyone zones in and out during the day
Although we take comfort in believing in a fixed and predictable reality, we zone in and out throughout the day, sometimes ever so slightly in a vague day dream, and sometimes slightly more as in trance or meditation work. For the average person not engaging in any reflective, trance or meditative practices, the farthest that we zone out each day is in our dreams, and they are often vague and unmemorable.
There is a wealth of information on lucid dreaming and associated techniques already online. My preferred practices are all day awareness, mantra induction, dream journaling, visualization and regular reality checking. I throw those terms out to allow you to research each in more detail should you so desire.
Once we are able to consciously induce regular lucid dreams, stabilize the environment and become deeply aware, we have access to a deeper range of experiences. The dream world itself is naturally very fluid and unstable, and just as easily as we are able to wake ourselves up from a dream, we can equally phase out much further. Robert Monroe, Frank Kepple and William Buhlman are amongst the great dream and out of body explorers that describe such journeys.
Lucid Dreaming is referenced by many cultures throughout history
Such techniques are referenced across almost every culture and tradition from Kabbalah to Shamanism, from Tibetan Dream Yoga to Astral Projection and the Occult. If you have a genuine desire and interest, I recommend studying a wide range of material on the subject, and gaining a strong perspective on the various teachings. I have personally focussed my interests in both Tibetan Dream Yoga and Castaneda’s shamanic teachings.
I have arrived at the conclusion that each tradition is pointing at the same experiences and realities, just from a different cultural perspective. They are different models with which to experience the same reality. Where Castaneda talks of the ‘second attention’, Tibetan Dream Yoga speaks of Bardos. Frank Kepple and Robert Monroe talk instead of ‘focus levels’.
Steps & practices to induce lucid dreaming
In each tradition, there are a set of steps and practises to develop. Castaneda’s teachings talk of isolating and following a “scout”. A scout is an energy form present in the dream world.
In Castaneda’s reality, once a dreamer is able to focus on their hands and maintain stability and awareness, the next step is noticing anything or anyone that is particularly suspicious or out of place within the dream environment. The presence may be very subtle and this is the reason that such dream practice, awareness and stability is required. Once the presence is located, the dreamer should follow it to other realities, of course under strict instruction.
The tradition also extends to a range of ancillary practices such as recapitulation and the use of “power plants”; strong hallucinogenics.
Tibetan Dream Yoga on the other hand speaks of experiences with Dakinis – higher beings. It focuses on visualizations of letters and symbols, and chakra work during the dream.
The dream reality is a powerful development tool, which allows us the experience of untold realities. Whichever tradition you dive in to, make sure you pick one that resounds with you, for it will yield the most pleasant journey for you.
These advanced practises allow us to develop intuition, awareness, knowledge, and ultimately awaken to the deeper nature of reality.
Have you ever experimented with Lucid Dreaming? Share your experience or ask Adam a question.
Did you enjoy this post? Share it with a friend on Twitter, FB or Google +.
P.S. Learn how to turn your dreams into reality by following your intuition: Click Here!
Adam Palmer teaches lucid dreaming as a path to awakening at Astral Zen. I’ve been consciously practising lucid dreaming and exploring the out of body state for over 10 years now. Now I want to help others share the experience. Connect to him on Twitter at @TheAstralZen
Photo credit: Wikipedia. “Nun’s Dream” by Karl Briullov
“To realize ones destiny is a person’s only obligation.” –Paulo Coelho
You’ve done everything the experts say.
You’ve read books, taken personality tests, and filled in the worksheets.
And yet you still feel lost.
They say “follow your passion” and you would do it… if you knew what they were.
Today I want to share with you how I discovered my dream. I want you to learn from my experience so you can begin discovering your dream today.
Three years ago, I was lost too.
I had no idea what to do with my life.
I tried it all.
But in the end I still didn’t know what to do.
It’s scary, right? Especially when you feel like you’ve done everything – and you still aren’t seeing results.
Looking in All The Wrong Places
I was spending so much time trying to figure out my passion that I wasn’t actually paying attention to my own life. My nose was stuck in a book, I was lost in my thoughts, I was struggling.
The problem is that we can learn a million strategies to discover our passion but if we don’t actually take the time to apply it then it take us no where.
Using Daily Experiences to Discover A Dream
Hi there. My name is Izzy.
I’m about to turn 30 in a few months. I used to be a teacher in America.
In my 4th year teaching it looked like I had it made – I was getting my masters degree, moving up the ladder and would soon be running my own school… One problem: I hated everything I was doing.
So I started to do some intense soul searching.
I read books, talked to loved ones, took personality tests and even paid for expert advice. Initially, nothing seemed to help.
But there was one simple problem: I wasn’t paying attention to my day to day life. I was so depressed that I was blind to the world in front of me.
Eventually, I realized the only way to figure this thing out – is to actually start paying attention to each day.
And guest what! It worked.
I discovered my dream: to become a ninja…
Sounds, crazy right?
Some dude is talking about a being a ninja. Let me explain:
This isn’t just any dream – it’s a childhood dream. So, according to my 8 year old brain a ninja does the following 3 things:
1. Lives in a far away land.
2. Trains extensively in martial arts.
3. Challenges the traditional rules of work and life.
So over the course of 3 years I have turned my dream into a reality.
I quit my job, I moved to Japan, and train extensively in martial arts. I work just enough to cover my expenses.
I share this as evidence that what I am about to share with you works.
Each of the 8 strategies I share below has contributed to the discovery of my dream.
I hope with all of my heart they can do the same for you.
8 Ways To Use Daily Experiences to Identify Your Dreams
1. Listen to Your Conversations
When I talked with people I started to notice how it impacted my mood. When I discussed travel and martial arts I would get excited. I started to pay closer attention to this.
Topics that excite you or bother you can be key indicators for your dreams.
2. What Makes You Jealous
In particular when I was struggling in my day to day life I would get jealous of other people. But it was interesting to see who I was jealous of. I noticed I was most jealous of people who “had the freedom to travel”. Hinting to me that this was very important.
Jealousy is a very powerful emotion because it tells you that someone has something that you want but do not have.
3. Carry a Thought Journal
I started to carry a journal everywhere. Basically any ideas, or insights would be written down. On Sunday I would review what I wrote. This always triggered deeper reflections. These reflections started to open doors to explore what I truly wanted out of my life.
4. Keep an Emotional Time Log
I started to write down my emotions at each hour of the day. I used my journal for this. This was powerful because I started to notice patterns. Things that excited me and made he happy hinted at my dreams and passions.
This is a truly amazing activity. It can help you identify things that are leading to your positive emotions and negative emotions.
5. Hang out with positive people.
After using an emotional log to track my emotions I started to realize that my friends and peers had a huge impact on me. So I made an active effort to be around people that “excited” me. The more I was around these people the more my sense of possibility increased. This was critical because the pursuit of a dream requires a huge sense of possibility.
Optimistic people will encourage your dreams and expand your sense of possibility.
6. Keep a Daily Log of All Activities (with rankings)
After I had done the emotional log for a while I decided to switch gears. I started tracking my daily activities. This included everything from meetings, martial arts, teaching math, science, picking up groceries, and hanging out with friends.
After each activity I gave it a score from 1 to 10 (10 being “I loved it!”). I did this for one week. I then looked it over at the end of the week and used it to help me better understand which activities I enjoyed the most.
7. Develop a daily gratitude list and look it over once a week.
Every night before I went to sleep I wrote down 5 things I appreciated. Then I looked at my list once per week. The crazy thing is that I kept on being appreciative of the same things – this was powerful because it helped me discover those things I truly enjoyed. Once again, this hints at your dreams and passions.
8. Write down every “I just wish I could…” statement in your head.
When I was battling through the depression I would often say statements in my head that started with “I wish I just could…”. Eventually, I realized it could be powerful to write these down. Here are the two biggest statements I made –
“I wish I could just live in a foreign country and not do this stupid job.”
“I wish I could just train in martial arts full time.”
I wrote these down – and started to ask the question: how can I do this?
Eventually I discovered exactly how to do it.
Some Final Thoughts
Each and every day is an opportunity to move closer towards your dreams. But this can only happen if you become an active participant in your world. I share each of these 8 strategies in hopes that you can start applying them to your life immediately.
Discovering your dream is not something that just magically happens. It takes time but by listening to yourself and the world around you – you can make it happen .
I hope today you begin the discovery of your dream. What steps do you find most useful to discover your dream?
If you enjoyed this post please share it with a friend on Twitter, FB or G+. Thank you!
P.S. To tap into your intuition to discover your dream – click here!
Who is Izmael Arkin?
Izzy is a crazy dude. He quit his job as a teacher to pursue his childhood dream: to become a ninja. He now lives in Japan where he trains in martial arts extensively. Check out Izzy’s Ninja Tool Kit – books and tools to help you follow your dreams. You can read more about Izzy’s journey at The 30 Year Old Ninja,
Do you ever wake up with that odd feeling you’ve had a dream, but can’t remember it?
Are there times when only a snippet of a dream surfaces?
Ever find yourself frustrated over being unable to recall a haunting dream?
Many people have trouble remembering their dreams – even I do sometimes. When this happens I know have to go back to the basics of dream recall again. I’ve kept a dream journal since I was a teenager and found many of the insights gleaned from my dreams invaluable over the years. So, when I don’t remember my dreams I feel as if something important is missing from my day.
Some are precognitive dreams, some vivid encounters with departed loved ones, others recollections of out of body experiences, but the majority solve problems and answer questions about issues I’m grappling with in my life.
Why remember your dreams?
While I love all the different types of dreams I have the most rewarding dreams are the problem solvers simply because they are the most practical in everyday life. Problem solving dreams not only give you answers and guidance, but can also validate an answer or direction you’re not 100 percent sure about taking.
Today was one of those days that my dream evaporated into thin air. I know exactly why this happened too – I moved and opened my eyes too soon. Tonight I plan to go back to basics to ensure that I recall a dream.
Here are the basics on how you can be sure to remember your dreams too:
1. Make sure you have a pad and pen on your bedside table.
2. Set the alarm for a half hour earlier to have time to mull over your dream.
3. Create the intention to have a dream and recall it. Spend a few minutes before drifting off telling yourself that you want to have a dream, that you will have dream and that you will readily and easily remember it.
4. When you wake up DO NOT OPEN YOUR EYES right away. After turning off the alarm clock – DO NOT MOVE. Just lay still to allow the dream to stay on the surface of your mind.
5. Do not allow pets to distract you when you awake, or better yet keep them out of the bedroom so they don’t wake you up.
6. After grabbing some of the pertinent details – WRITE THEM DOWN before they sink back down to the depths of the subconscious.
7. Do meditate directly after getting out of bed. If you’re not a meditator don’t turn on the radio or TV or talk right after waking either. After writing down the pertinent details – silence allows further dream fragments to bubble up to the surface of awareness.
One more thing I have found disruptive to recalling my dreams is getting up at night if I’ve had too many liquids prior to bedtime. While many times I’ll awaken and be in the midst of a dream – the movement of having to get out of bed right away yanks them immediately from my mind, so that for the most part they are lost forever.
Do you recall your dreams? Do you have a problem your trying to solve right now? Try this see how many more dreams you recall. Good luck my fellow dreamers.
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Photo Credit – Flickr – A Midsummer’s Nice Dream.
I knew I was going to lose my father four months before it happened.
I didn’t want to accept it, even though this dream had a very different quality to it than any of my other dreams. Besides, I thought, he was such a healthy 82-year-old. Still climbing ladders to cut down tree limbs and doing all the yard work a younger man in his 40s or 50s would hire someone else to do. How could this be? I tried rationalizing to minimize its meaning, but I knew in my gut that it was warning me of this life-changing event.
All the wonderful moments of my life with my father played out in front of my eyes.
This dream was very different. I was aware that I was dreaming. And, I was seeing it as if I were at a movie theater watching scenes of our life together appear up on the big screen.
I saw myself sitting on my Dad’s lap at 5 years old, then in the water at Jones beach and he was showing me how to dive under with my eyes open; then teaching me to ride a bicycle on the sidewalk outside our apartment building in New York; ice skating with my father in our back yard on the rink he’d built us after moving out of the city; working with my father to put up our above-ground pool….
The movie continued on like this all the way to the present with his helping me move into my current home. During the entire dream I felt the strength of the bond I had with my father, along with this incredible love for him that I can only describe as “celestial.”
I was being prepared for this terrible event. (more…)