Lucid dreaming

Lucid dreaming

Lucid dreaming is a term coined in the last century by the writer and psychiatrist Frederick Van Eden (Holland) to denote an altered state of consciousness, which is characterized by the ability of a sleeping person to become aware of himself in a dream and to more or less model the content of a dream.

Lucid dreaming is often mentioned in fairy tales of different peoples of the world. The most ancient manuscript, called "Yoga of states of sleep" and containing information about the lucid dreaming itself, and about exercises that contribute to entering the said state of consciousness, was found in Tibet, and dates back to the 8th century AD.

Scientists are not interested in lucid dreaming. This is not true. The first scientific substantiation of lucid dreaming was produced by psychophysiologist Stephen LaBerge in the 70s of the last century. To prove that lucid dreams exist, LaBerge developed a system for transmitting information from the dreamer to the outside world through certain eye movements (it turned out that the eyeballs of a sleeping person repeat certain eye movements made in a dream). In 1987, the scientist founded the Lucidity Institute (Institute of Lucid Dreams), which studies the mentioned state of consciousness. In addition, the phenomenon of lucid dreaming has been studied and confirmed by scientists from many countries (for example, Japan), and also in some cases is used in psychotherapy in order to obtain additional tools of introspection (according to Freud, who argued that a dream is nothing more than a certain code or a code that carries information about a person's hidden desires).

Many people do not even dream of ordinary dreams, let alone lucid dreams. Misconception. All people have dreams, but not every person is able to remember what he saw in a dream. However, through training, you can learn to memorize images from dreams, and this is the first step to awareness in a dream.

Lucid dreaming is practiced only by a few groups of esotericists. Since ancient times, the Senoi tribes have lived in the interior regions of the north and center of Malaysia, using lucid dreaming in order to gain mental stability and obtain positive feelings. Also part of many yogic practices (for example, in laya yoga - "yoga of dissolution", which appeared in the 5th-3rd centuries BC) is yoga nidra ("the path of dreams"), which provides for the mastery of practices that allow one to be aware of oneself in sleep, control dreams and subsequently go into dreamless sleep - the space of the Clear Light. Similar practices take place in practical Taoism, where in the section "intermediate mastery" they study various methods of cultivation in sleep (correct awareness of dreams, according to Taoists, can help a person escape from the world of illusion, which, according to their philosophy, is also a dream).

To get into a lucid dream, you must first fall asleep. Researchers believe that the transition to a lucid dream can occur both from ordinary sleep (when a person only realizes after a while that he is sleeping), and directly from the state of wakefulness (in this case, the person does not lose awareness of what is happening).

The impact of another person, various devices and drugs can help almost any individual to see a lucid dream, even without special training. Yes, lucid dreaming can be entered through the use of hypnosis or self-hypnosis. Sometimes technical means can also help. For example, the devices "DreamLight" (from the English dream - "sleep" and light - "perception") and "NovaDreamer" (English Nova - "new", Dreamer - "dreamer", "cut off from life") developed by the Institute of Lucid Dreaming ), which can induce lucid dreaming even in people without special training. However, it should be remembered that you still have to learn how to manage such a dream. The use of certain drugs, for example, vitamins or drugs that improve memory and harmonize the activity of the brain, is fraught with the fact that after a while a person will not be able to enter a lucid dream without the use of the aforementioned substances. Moreover, in this case, there is no physical addiction, but a purely psychological aspect - a person loses faith in his own strength.

Dreaming can only be controlled after a long study. Not necessary. There are many people who have an innate ability to be aware of themselves in a dream and to model a dream of their own accord (but even then, a person will have to undergo training in order to benefit from their ability to control dreams).

Lucid dreaming has no practical value in real life. Completely erroneous opinion. Experiencing situations in lucid dreams that are impossible in ordinary life, modeling the development of events, a person has the opportunity to observe his own reactions to certain events, thereby obtaining an excellent opportunity for knowing himself. And, for example, having gained confidence in a dream (by controlling flights, changing events and the world around him), a person is quite capable of transferring faith in his own strength to everyday life, getting rid of certain fears, phobias, etc. In addition, in lucid dreams, you can study according to an accelerated program (in one lucid dream you can get the skills of versification or master several kata, which would take a lot of time to study in real life), but this requires a fairly high level of training, and in some cases - an experienced mentor.

A person who begins to master the space of lucid dreams in real life is haunted by troubles and misfortunes. This state of affairs can take place if a person is energetically and emotionally unbalanced. In this case, the so-called "tonal filter" is triggered (in Toltec magic, "tonal" is everything that a person, samsara, being can imagine), the action of which is expressed in real events that for a long time discourage a person from working with lucid dreams.

Even experienced practitioners find it difficult to stay in a state of awareness for a long time - they either wake up or go to ordinary, uncontrolled sleep. Yes it is. At first, the reason for leaving a lucid dream almost immediately after its onset is strong uncontrollable emotions generated by the realization that staying in this altered state of consciousness is really possible. And since the refined matter of dreams is very susceptible to the emotions and thoughts of a person, sudden mood swings are quite capable of disrupting the harmony between the sleeping and the sleeping space. Therefore, the first thing to be achieved is maximum control of emotions and feelings. In the future, in order to prolong the stay in a lucid dream, a person should accumulate the maximum amount of energy (vitality). To do this, he needs to minimize stress factors influencing from the outside (for example, move from a metropolis to the countryside), engage in certain practices that help concentrate and improve the quality of energy, give up bad habits (smoking, drinking alcohol), follow a diet (excluding from the diet of meat and fish), etc.

But even if the above restrictions are observed, problems can still arise, since at first not every dreamer is able to synchronize with a dream (very plastic and by no means fixed in time and space). There are techniques to improve the "consonance" of a dream and a sleeping person. For example, you can periodically examine your hands and surrounding objects, move in space, and in especially difficult cases, fall on your back, spin around your axis, etc.

If a person passes from a lucid dream to an ordinary dream, this indicates a lack of attentiveness. Therefore, in real life, he should engage in exercises that help improve concentration, and in a dream, he should carefully examine the furnishings in all details or touch them (since tactile sensations are very significant both in the waking state and in lucid dreaming).

There are many methods to help a person understand that he is asleep and, therefore, move to lucid dreaming. Yes, such methods exist. You can, for example, try to take off, pierce a wall, window glass, or your own palm with your finger (in this case, at first you may experience a feeling of some elasticity of the object, but in a dream the attempt will most likely be successful). You can also pinch yourself (you will not feel pain in a dream), clamp your mouth and nose (this maneuver does not interfere with the dreamer's breathing), consider your hands or the reflection in the mirror (the images of dreams are not constant - after a couple of seconds the hands and face can begin " flow "or change shape), read the same inscription twice (its meaning and outlines in a dream are unstable). You can also flip the switch (in a dream, this may either have no consequences, or generate an interesting effect: the presence of darkness when the light is on), try to remember previous events (if you cannot remember how you got to this place, you are sleeping), etc. ...

A certain position of the body, concentration on breathing and heartbeat, etc. can help to enter a lucid dream. Entering unconscious dreams is facilitated by two types of techniques: direct, i.e. affecting the state of the body, concentration of the mind, etc., as well as indirect, consisting in various ways of programming oneself. According to practitioners, not all of the methods mentioned are equally significant. For example, in some cases, body position (best of all - lying on your right side with arms crossed or on your back with your knees bent) can actually increase the chances of entering a lucid dream, but it is not a decisive factor. But the method of shifting attention to the activity of the physical body (concentration on the heartbeat, breathing), combined with maximum relaxation and visualization of certain images (for example, a shining flower (rose or lotus) located in the throat chakra (vishudha)) is very effective. It also increases the likelihood of entering a lucid dream and the "method of minimal attention", which is used immediately after waking up: a person plunges into sleep again, at first passively observing flickering pictures, and only after the visions gain clarity - increases the level of awareness.

There are several levels of mastering lucid dreaming, and the longer a person works in the field of comprehending guided dreams, the deeper he goes. The classification of lucid dreams is a rather complicated matter, but they can still be conditionally divided into several levels:

1. A dream that a person is trying to master lucid dreams. He sees himself comprehending the space of a dream, but complete identification does not occur;

2. The first thoughts appear that a person is dreaming, attempts to verify the reliability of these conclusions (for example, take off). But this state lasts for a few seconds, and is replaced by an ordinary dream;

3. The thought of a lucid dream persists throughout the entire dream, but a person almost immediately goes into sleep of the first level, that is, sees himself trying to perform planned tasks, but does not identify with this image;

4. A person realizes that he is sleeping, performs tasks that he planned, however, upon waking up, he begins to doubt the correctness of his behavior in the process of a lucid dream (most often his actions differ from reactions to the same events in real life);

5. In a lucid dream, a person behaves in the same way as in a state of wakefulness, is clearly aware of what is happening, controls his emotions, etc.

It should be noted that the achieved level of lucid dreams is by no means stable - a person can both develop and degrade, i.e. go from 5 to 4, from 4 to 3, and sometimes simply slide into a normal dream (for example, in the case of a strong passion for an object, an emotional reaction to a situation that has arisen, etc.).

Some illnesses can become an obstacle to mastering the practice of lucid dreaming. It really is. For example, people suffering from diseases of the cardiovascular system should be very careful with the practice of lucid dreaming, since strong emotional experiences experienced in dreams of this kind can negatively affect the health of dreamers. You should not master lucid dreams and people who are impressionable or suffering from mental disorders, since there is a danger of replacing reality with various situations simulated in a dream. It should be borne in mind that mentally healthy people can have negative consequences of lucid dreams, therefore experts advise, firstly, not to devote too much time to sleep (both normal and lucid). Secondly, try to be calm about any information received from lucid dreams (both positive and negative). And, thirdly, one should not mystify the area of ​​lucid dreams, constantly wait for any dangers or troubles, since in the space formed by our own consciousness and subconsciousness, exactly those events will take place in which a person sincerely believes. And the degree of their influence on the dreamer will also depend on how much he can assume this or that development of events, as well as how much he believes that something in the dream space can harm him. In addition, some physiological characteristics of the body are helpful for mastering the space of lucid dreams. For example, it has been observed that people with good blood clotting are quicker to master the ability to be aware of and control dreams than those with slightly lower blood clotting.

In lucid dreams, you can communicate with real people. At a certain level of mastering the practice of lucid dreaming, the exchange of information between real dreamers, who are sometimes at a great distance from each other, is indeed possible. However, at the initial stages, almost all creatures (people, animals, plants) that a person sees in a dream, as well as the places in which certain events occur, are the results of the brain activity of the dreamer himself, projections of his memory. Objects of this kind, called "sprites" (English sprite - "ghost", "elf"), in the opinion of experienced dreamers ("dream hackers"), differ from real people, animals, etc. (with which a person can meet in the space of lucid dreaming). Hackers claim that after long-term observation and training, a person practicing lucid dreaming begins to notice that a sensation of warmth (and not physical, but energetic) emanates from real objects, while the projections of the mind radiate cold, entities that do not belong to the world embodied (the so-called "inorganics") - a stronger cold, and deceased people - and heat and cold at the same time.

After lucid dreaming, a person wakes up tired and overwhelmed, because his brain does not rest.No, the level of lucidity of dreams does not affect any processes occurring in the human body. According to the researchers, lucid dreaming can occur during the "REM sleep stage" (rapid-wave or paradoxical sleep, during which the eyes move rapidly under the closed eyelids), which changes "slow sleep" every 60-90 minutes and lasts from 5 to 15 minutes, generally taking up about 20-25% of all sleep. The human body at this moment does not make any movements, since the muscle tone in the stage of REM sleep (both lucid and normal sleep) is very low (i.e. the body is resting at this time). Also, the level of awareness does not affect the brain activity in this phase of sleep - in any case, there is an exchange of information between consciousness and subconsciousness.

Lucid dreaming and the exit of the astral body are practically the same thing. No, these are completely different practices. In the process of dreams, a person does not separate from his physical body. Everything that he feels and experiences is formed exclusively in the area of ​​his consciousness.

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