Having my second LD: help please!

There are already a number of great responses here, I thought I’d add a few words about my experience. For the western approaching to LDing, I think LaBerge’s “Exploring The World of Lucid Dreaming” is the ideal starting place. It discusses all the day and night practices that promote lucidity in dreams.

I think there are two types of awareness that play into having lucid dreams: 1) dream awareness; and 2) state awareness.

Dream awareness is awareness of dreams: fully realizing that you do dream every night, being interested in your dreams, having the strong intention to remember your dreams, and becoming very familiar with your own person dreaming rhythm: when, during the course of the night do you tend to have the clearest, most vivid dreams. Also, becoming very familiar with the (typically) repeating patterns (“dream signs”) of experiences that happen in your dreams. And of course, developing increasingly vivid dream recall, and more and more becoming present and aware in the course of your dreaming.

State awareness is being aware of whether your mind (and thus your current experience ) is in the waking or dreaming state.

My motto for (lucid) dreaming is: “pay attention, reflect, recall” – we remember best those experiences to which we pay purposeful attention. Developing a habit of reflecting on these experiences to determine if they are dream-like helps achieve lucidity in dream more often (and helps to incubate the thought of determining your state in dream). Frequently recalling your experiences (both waking and dreaming) builds higher and higher experience-memory and aids greatly in recalling dreams (and waking) experiences.

As you noted, strong intent can be highly stimulating and can interfere with falling asleep. The most important thing about dreaming is being asleep! More sleep time means more dream time and more opportunities to be lucid in the dream state. So Andrew’s motto of “not too tight, not too loose” applies here. Lucid dreaming is all about learning to balance on the tightrope between the extremes of holding on to awareness too tightly (don’t fall asleep) and complete dullness (fall asleep unconsciously with no background intent/awareness to aid in lucidity).

Once one grasps and puts the western LD fundamentals into practice, I recommend adding in the dream yoga aspects: I find Andrew’s work here excellent, as is “The Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep” (TYoDaS). I think the practice section of TYoDaS is the most profound and concise statement of how to go about developing lucidity in dream. I can’t recommend it enough. I even keep a bookmark to the introduction to the practice section to continually remind myself about the goals in the practice:

I find the “pay attention/reflect/recall” approach leads to highly vivid and “present” (“I am here, now”) dreams in time. Consistency over time pays off. Recognizing the dream state (lucid dreams), for me at least, takes long periods of consistently strong intention, mostly during the day. Generally after about 2-3 weeks of very strong intent to be lucid in dreams, I will have a burst of lucid dreams, assuming my dream awareness (recall, vividness, presence) is high enough.

The most effective way to frame intent (again, for me), is to have very concrete, specific goals of things you want to do or notice in the dream state, for which you are highly motivated. For instance, beginning the practice of dream yoga (something specific, like alternating between pushing your hand through a “wall” and then feeling the “hardness” of the wall). “I want to be lucid in dreams” I found is too vague a goal for my dreaming mind to latch on to to get lucid frequently in dreams.

I find the LaBerge practice of “reflection/intention moments” highly effective: where during the waking day you just stop and try to really “feel” yourself as if you were in the dream state right now, and tell yourself, “if I were lucid and dreaming right now, I would … . Tonight, when I’m dreaming, I intend to notice the dream state and do this.”

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This is a fantastic post from an experienced and highly respected oneironaut.

One thing that has not been mentioned is journaling. As an older guy I tend to wake up during the night. I generally write down two or three dreams every night. The more diligent I am at that, the clearer my dreams become and the better my recall becomes. As an early stage lucid dreamer @quakeyjase I highly recommend that practice.

As for the Tenzin protocols (TYoDaS), this has become a natural part of my nocturnal protocols. When combined with Inner Heat style vase breathing, that is, attention to the central channel…conscious awareness in the dream begins to come naturally.

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Yes despite my scepticism I’m not ruling out anything and I don’t expect instant results really, but I have kept a dream journal continuously since 04/2019 and I think I have been close a few time. Since my last post I had a dream where I was telling someone (possibly my younger self) that (waking) reality is only a projection, and it feels real because it keeps projecting. True reality doesn’t keep projecting, it just is and we know it. This is encouraging because I asked my dreaming mind to give me a lucid dream, or an ordinary dream that tells me why not. I think my dreaming mind will come around, and when it does I will explore some of the stuff you have talked about. I’ll keep trying!

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Every lucid dream does not have to feature “flying through walls” type lucidity. If you are recognizing your self in a dream and taking away strong feelings like that upon awakening, in my opinion, there is a degree of lucidity involved. It sounds as if you are just a bit of strong intention setting away from flying through walls.

The question is…is that what you want? After flying through more than a few walls (figuratively speaking) I realized that every time I took control of the dream in that fashion I lost the dream itself. The dream became about me. I further realized that by losing the dream itself I was losing access to a possible treasure trove of very deep wisdom and understanding about who I am…and even who we are. Just something to think about.

“Lucidity” when used as “lucid dreaming”, is just a phrase that we have co-opted to describe a dream where we know we are dreaming. By learning to stabilize your dreams and to enter them with conscious awareness, that knowledge that you are dreaming begins to manifest at a more subconscious level.

When that happens we can pull the curtain of the dream aside and glimpse the true nature of “Reality”…at least that’s how it feels to me. That has become my goal in all of this.

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That’s great advice. My immediate goal is to repeat the experience of becoming aware that I am dreaming, in order to establish that I can. Beyond that I would like to experiment with flying etc. to establish I can have some control over dream imagery. But ultimately my goals are more to do with spiritual practice than anything else. It’s interesting to me that I seem to be getting some really interesting insights from the journey itself. Maybe that’s typical, I don’t know.

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That was exactly my path after I was thrust into this world from a kind of accidental lucid dream a few years ago. I experimented with all of the classic lucid dreaming protocols until settling on SSILD as I mentioned above.

You might even look into the judicious use of galantamine after a while to give your brain a little boost in this direction. There is a good thread going about that now as well.

I’m with on the the goal of spiritual practice. Once you establish the fact that this whole experience is illusory in nature…you will find yourself going beyond the dream.

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and this post might be of use.

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I truly love that post, Barry. It really looks at lucid dreaming/dream yoga protocols from a full perspective.

Things like Zhine (calm abiding) and Guru Yoga are often overlooked and, from my experience, can really help.

One thing that I find interesting about Tenzin Wangyal’s approach…and that I noticed again in this post… is that he likes to work with the daytime affirmation of “This is a dream” rather than asking it as a question and working with state checks. I adopted that approach when I first read his manuscript and I have to say that it seems to have created a more intrinsic lucidity…perhaps a bit more subtle…as one begins to see all conscious experiences, both day and night, as illusory.

I love to hear some other views on that.

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yes, for TWR as a dzogchen practicioner, „This is a dream“ (instead of „Is this a dream?“) is the statement that cuts directly to the nature of reality of both day and nighttime experiences from a rigpa vantage point.

From a conventional vantage point, this statement/view of reality which does not differentiate between daytime and nighttime experiences does not seem to make sense (from a conventional dillusional point of view).

Having switched back and forth between both statements during daytime practice, I find that it stretches the mind in a yogic way, i.e. loosening slowly mind reifications, analogously to slowly loosening a tight body by practicing yoga).
But, since this view of reality is so directly connected to dzogchen practice, it should be explained and introduced by a qualified teacher to an interested beginner. Otherwise it is said that there will be intellectual misconceptions to the view and improper practice.
From a conventional point of view, the statement „This is a dream.“ does seem pretty psychotic. :slight_smile:

We had some great discussions on the subject already and I love B.Alan Wallace‘s explanation by using the analogy of the Dona Sutra:

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Glad you added :grinning:

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It might not actually be all that crazy to see our waking images as a dream after all.

I just got into the last chapter of Carlo Rovelli’s “Helgoland” where he skillfully equates how quantum physics sees the world to Nagarjuna’s seminal perspective of emptiness due to dependent co-arising. In the beginning of this chapter he writes about how the brain process information from the eyes.

"It would seem natural to think that the receptors detect the light that reached the retinas of our eyes and transform it into signals that race to the interior of the brain, where groups of neurons elaborate the information in ever more complex ways, until they interpret it and identify the objects in question.
It turns out, however, that the brain does not work this way. It functions, in fact, the opposite way. Many, if not most, of the signals do not travel from the eyes to the brain; they go the other way, from the brain to the eyes.
What happens is that the brain expects to see something, on the basis of what it knows and has previously occurred. The brain elaborates an image of what it predicts the eyes should see.
"

He goes on to say…

“The implications for this relationship between what we see and the world are remarkable. When we look around ourselves, we are not truly ‘observing’: we are instead dreaming an image of the world based on what we know.”

That sounds a lot like what I was doing last night at around 3:00 AM…with my eyes closed. :slightly_smiling_face:

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I am in the same boat as you. Been trying for over a year now to achieve lucidity on demand. I think the tips that the pros on here gave you are very good.

I came very close to achieving lucidity the other day. I decided to change my strategy, and I think I am on to something, hope this technique helps you:

Focus on the dream where you FIRST achieved lucidity, and visualize it and relive it again and again before you go to sleep, while you are entering the hypnogogic state.

You may have Aphantasia, and not be able to do this imagination technique, about 1-2% of the population has this. But if not, trying to visualize the important scene, objects, people, etc, right before and after you achieved lucidity will really help incubate a memory that you have already laid the foundation of.

Why not build on a foundation that was already laid?

So if you achieved lucidity while walking on a beach in your dream, picture your feet imprinting the sand, then the waves, the sounds of the ocean, the smells. where the sun was in the sky, the animals, the people, ext. Try to let your imagination incorporate as many of the 5 senses (10 senses) as possible.

@_Barry gave me a great tip from Charlie Morley to actually draw pictures of the dream, and then even act it out physically in the waking state before you go to bed. I thought this idea was pure genius!

Check out the videos on here of Andrew with the Sleep doctor if you haven’t already, lots of gems on how to achieve the best sleeping conditions.

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This has been suggested by Steven LeBarge and others and I’m glad you reminded me of it. Along with visualizing it, perhaps try to remember and relive the feeling, which could help trigger another. I remember one dream getting lucid and saying to myself “I’m in!”

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Excellent points Barry, I definitely agree.

Andrew asked Charlie Morely in his first video interview (I think it was interview video #2), what is the most important take away you can tell lucid dreamers, and Charlie said:

You have to have a WHY that really motivates you and makes your juices flow, makes you deeply motivated to become lucid, not just the lucidity itself/.

Example:
I want to become lucid, BECAUSE:

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Example:
I want to become lucid, BECAUSE:
I want closure with my dad who died suddenly in a car crash, and I never got to say goodbye

or

I want to become lucid, because flying is my biggest passion on my bucket list, and I want to feel what it is like to be more than human.

The lists of whys are infinite, and very personal and relative to each person. Some want healing, others closure, others ego pleasures. Whatever it is, figure out your WHY and use the above techniques to incubate it and meditate on it.

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Saw this “trick” in a Reddit post and thought it might be fun to contemplate/try.

Very Effective Method to Induce Lucid Dreaming (Trick) (self.LucidDreaming)
submitted 3 days ago by xperio28Natural Lucid Dreamer2

Get a box or some kind of a chest with a lock. Give it to a friend or a family member and ask them to purchase a gift/present for you. Then ask them to put it inside the chest and lock it without telling you what’s inside it.

The twist is… you are not allowed to open it… ever!

Every time you go to sleep put the box next to or under your bed to tempt you. You should be strong enough to resist the urge to open it.Indeed, you will have constant thoughts about what could be inside it, that is the point. Your subconscious will be obsessed with it, giving you countless ideas of what could be inside it. When you find yourself thinking about actually opening it perform a reality check. You can only open the box IF you find out you are in a dream. Every night you will fall asleep wondering what’s inside the box, untill… You finaly dream about the box.

You perform a reality check and realise that in fact, you are dreaming! It worked! Your intentions to find out what’s hidden inside brought you here! Your reward? YOU can open it!! In the box you will find your deepest desires, something you always wanted or just something you “knew” was inside all along. Let that item set the stage for your lucid dream adventure.

The next morning: “That was one of my best lucid dreams so far! But I wonder… what’s really inside that box?”

Repeat

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WOW THANK YOU for sharing that!

that is such smart idea.

GILD = Gift Induced Lucid Dreaming

definitely looking forward to testing it out.

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So I got a package from Amazon yesterday evening and I had no idea what it was and decided I was going to do that activity with that box. I was really excited, but then I received that email message from Amazon to rate the delivery, which I always like to do for those fellas and gals, and I thought I could do it without actually seeing what was in the box, which is often the case. Unfortunately, as soon as I clicked on the rating link, the whole order came up and I found out what it was, two bottles of something or other, which was a bummer. No sugar tonight.

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hey @_Barry Don’t feel GILDty about it :wink:

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LOL

That was really funny
:smiley:

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