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Tag: Dreams

Lucid Dreaming: take control over your dreams

I am sure many people may have experienced a lucid dream, as I did when I was a kid, or heard of the term at some point in their life, but I would like to introduce it anyhow to those who did not have the chance to know about it.

According to Wikipedia, a lucid dream is a dream in which the person is aware that they are dreaming while the dream is in progress, also known as a conscious dream. When the dreamer is lucid, they can actively participate in the imaginary experiences in the dream environment, and in an advanced stage, they can often control and manipulate them.

A lucid dream can begin in one of two ways. A dream-initiated lucid dream (DILD) starts as a normal dream, and the dreamer eventually concludes that they are dreaming, while a wake-initiated lucid dream (WILD) occurs when the dreamer goes from a normal waking state directly into a dream state with no apparent lapse in consciousness. Lucid dreamers regularly perform a reality check, which is a common method to determine whether or not they are dreaming. It involves performing an action with results that will be different if the tester is dreaming. By practicing these tests during waking life, one may eventually decide to perform such a test while dreaming, which may fail and let the dreamer realize that they are dreaming. Common reality checks include pinching any part of your body to check if you feel no pain, pinching your nose to check if you are able to breathe without using your mouth, flipping a light switch, and Looking at one’s digital watch (remembering the time), looking away, and then looking back.

The term lucid dreaming was coined by Dutch author and psychiatrist Frederik van Eeden in his 1913 article “A Study of Dreams”. Even though it has only come to the attention of the general public in the last few decades, lucid dreaming is not a modern discovery. A letter written by St. Augustine of Hippo in 415 AD refers to lucid dreaming. In the eighth century, Tibetan Buddhists and Bonpo were practicing a form of Dream Yoga held to maintain full waking consciousness while in the dream state. Marquis d’Hervey de Saint-Denys was probably the first person to argue that it is possible for anyone to learn to dream consciously. In 1867, he published his book Les Reves et les Moyens de Les Diriger; Observations Pratiques (Dreams and How to Guide them; Practical Observations), in which he documented more than twenty years of his own research into dreams.

Lucid dreaming has been researched scientifically, and its existence is well established. The first book on lucid dreams to recognize their scientific potential was Celia Green’s 1968 study Lucid Dreams. She predicted that they would turn out to be associated with rapid eye movement sleep (REM sleep). During the 1980s, further scientific evidence to confirm the existence of lucid dreaming was produced as lucid dreamers were able to demonstrate to researchers that they were consciously aware of being in a dream state using eye movement signals. Neuroscientist J. Allan Hobson has hypothesized what might be occurring in the brain while lucid. Research on techniques and effects of lucid dreaming continues at a number of universities and other centers, including LaBerge’s Lucidity Institute.

Over time, several techniques have been developed to achieve a lucid dreaming state intentionally. Perhaps the most important one is to remember the dreams as soon as you wake up, and write them down in a dream journal. Getting into the habit of doing reality checks is also very important. Lucid dreaming does not happen overnight, but with constant practice you can start having lucid dreams.

If you want to know more about Lucid Dreaming, The Babble Out is the best choice for your consideration. A detailed guide on how to Lucid Dream can be found on that page as well. Watch the video below about Lucid Dreaming on ABC News:

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