Greetings + Hypnagogic Experience => ZAP!

Hi All,

I’m pretty new here, and just wanted to share and reach out as I vacillate from being, as Andrew often says, “Too Tight, or Too Loose”. When I first joined I was practicing diligently as I had that great burst of energy as I’m sure you’ve experienced or heard of, but now I’m in a lull. But you know, that’s ok. So I’m connecting in hopes that this will jump-start a little bit of that great energy again!

So I’ve recently had two low level lucid dreams, but that’s not what I wanted to talk about. What I want to mention was a hypnagogic experience I call ZAP! So dealing with the balance between lucid dream practice and insomnia, I often end up just laying there trying to not fight insomnia, and just experience relaxation and the hynagogic exerience. (Forgive me if I’m butchering the hynagogic spelling/terminology). I often can relax and get to the point where orange blobs are floating back and forth before my closed eyes. I have trouble walking that tightrope that allows myself to relax enough into the visions and dreams and remain aware.

This one evening I lay down, and was very relaxed and tired/at ease. I lay down and plan to relax and expect those orange blobs to appear as I felt very much so at ease. After a relatively short time it seemed, (and without much orange blobs which seemed odd to me in hindsight,) I experienced what seemed like an electric shock. It sounded like a small electrical device like a tv or microwave exploded electrically, and I experienced this as a flash of white light. This was so sudden and forceful that I sat bolt upright startled and questioning if something in my home had indeed electrically malfunctioned.

So I’m just sharing and reflecting on the experience. It points out to me that the hypnagogic experience is not just visual, but auditory in experience as well. It makes me think of the visualization of the Tibetan letter A at your throat, but also the practice involves imagining the sound/mantra “Ah” associated with it as well. This brings up the question: If visualizations lead to in a sense actually “seeing” the visualized object in your mind, should you experience this auditory “Ah” in the same way? At first thinking of and imagining the mantra, and tone. And then maybe gently the experience builds upon itself and then eventually manifest itself as the emerging hypnagogic experience?

Happy to hear your thoughts and any similar experiences and journeys in your own practice.




Insomnia is one of the toughest aspects for me to handle in terms of sleep too.

I’ve found that, when initially trying to fall asleep at night, it’s best not to attempt lucid dreaming. Saying I will remember my dreams once or twice is ideal. Then if a DILD occurs, that’s great. As for waking up in the middle of the night, which would be from an alarm or naturally this would be when I’d try WILDs or other techniques. I find the most comfortable position, lie still, and even with insomnia, my mind transitions from coherent thoughts to a jumbled mess. Staying calm through this phase can quickly lead to dreams.

Over time, I’ve also found that simply lying still is a good way to combat insomnia. It aids in getting some sleep either way.

Regarding auditory hallucinations, I’ve experienced them only a few times. They’re quite startling, and like you, they’ve jolted me awake. Mine have always involved someone yelling my name. It’s odd, but it seems to be part of the process.

I’ve never managed to stay calm during these episodes. However, I wanted to say they’re common in the state you’re reaching. The good news is you’re close to the dream state when this happens, so don’t be discouraged.

The main points I wanted to cover were that auditory hallucinations are normal in this state, and you’re very near the dream state when they occur.

Sometimes, I wonder if it’s assistance from the other side, helping us establish that tightrope zone.

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Hello Keith,

check out Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche“s new edition of „The Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep“. There he explains the details of focusing on the A.

In my understanding, it is indeed important that the Tibetan symbol is understood as representing the sound of „A“ but you don“t need to mentally sound the „A“.
The function of the visualization of the A is to give your mind an anchor while it relaxes and fades into dream. At one point you will have to let go even of the visualization otherwise you will not fall asleep. The point is to remain in the throat chakra while not engaging in other thoughts while falling asleep.


Not exactly the same thing but your experience reminded me of the SSILD technique, which basically calls for cycling through sight (eyes closed) sound, feeling to help induce sleep and lucidity. i’ve had some success with it. Check out the link if you’re interested.

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Hi Keith
Im not so familiar with all the dream yoga or lucid dreaming terminology as have been fortunate to naturally sleep/dream/LD, but something have used a lot is neat lavender oil and applied it directly on my skin (test on wrist 1st incase allergic) usually behind my ears but often just under the nose.

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I don’t usually have insomnia, but I find it useful to just use the falling asleep time to practice meditation. I use the throat chakra as the place to keep bringing my mind back to. Like any meditation, various thoughts, pictures, “orange blobs” or whatever may arise, but just keep bringing the mind back to the throat chakra. On a few rare occasions I’ve felt an electric-like jolt go through my body and see a flash of light and my legs may jerk. Just go back to the meditation. Getting too anxious about not falling asleep can be counter productive. Just keep meditating and tell yourself that sleep will come whenever it comes.

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