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The Experience of Lucid Dreaming

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Skyflower
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Lori~ann


« on: July 10, 2008, 09:57:18 am »

The Experience of Lucid Dreaming


If you haven’t yet had a lucid dream, you may find it difficult to imagine what it is like.
Although you have to experience it to really know what it is like (“’Those who taste, know”), it
is possible to get an idea of the experience
by comparing lucid dreaming to a presumably more
familiar state of consciousness: the one you are in right now! The following experiential
exercise will guide you through a tour of your everyday waking state of con-ciousness. Spend
about one minute on each of the steps.


EXERCISE: YOUR PRESENT STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS
1. Look
Become aware of what you see: notice the richly varied and vivid impressions—shapes, colors,
movement, dimensionality,
the entire visible world.
2. Listen
Become aware of what you hear: register the various sounds taken in by your ears—a diverse
range of intensities,
pitches, and tonal qualities, perhaps including the commonplace miracle of
speech or the wonder of music.
3. Feel
Become aware of what you touch: texture (smooth, rough, dry, sticky, or wet), weight (heavy,
light, solid, or empty), pleasure, pain, heat and cold, and the rest. Also note how your body
feels right now and compare that to the many other ways it feels at other times, tired or
energetic, stiff or limber, painful or pleasant, and so on.
4. Taste
Become aware of what it is like to taste: taste a number of different foods and substances, or
remember and vividly
imagine their tastes.
5. Smell
Become aware of what you smell: the odor of warm bodies, earth, incense, smoke, perfume,
coffee, onions, alcohol, and the sea. Remember and imagine as many of them as you can.
6. Breathing
Attend to your breathing. A moment ago you probably were not consciously aware of your
breathing even though you have inhaled and exhaled fifty times while doing this exercise. Hold
your breath for a few seconds. Let it out. Now take a deep breath. Notice that being conscious
of your breathing allows you to alter it deliberately.
7. Emotions
Become aware of your feelings. Remember the difference between anger and joy, serenity and
excitement, and as many other emotions as you care to feel. How real do emotions feel?
8. Thoughts
Become aware of your thoughts. What have you been thinking while doing this exercise? What
are you thinking
right now? How real do thoughts seem?
9. “I”
Become aware of the fact that your world always includes
you. As William James noted, it is /
see, / hear, / feel, I think that is the basic fact of experience. 5 You are not what you see, hear,
think, or feel; you have these experiences. Perhaps most essentially, you are who is aware. You
are always at the center of your multidimensional
universe of experience, but you are not
always consciously aware of yourself. Briefly repeat the exercise with the following difference:
At the same time you attend
to each of the various aspects of your experience, be aware that it
is you who is noticing these things (“I see the light...”).
10. Awareness of awareness
Finally, become aware of your awareness. Normally, awareness focuses on objects outside
ourselves, but it can itself be an object of awareness. In the light of ordinary
experience, we
seem to be distinct and limited centers of awareness, each alone in our inner worlds. In the light
of eternity, mystics tell us, we are ultimately all one—the unlimited awareness that is the source
of being. Here, experience cannot be adequately expressed by language.


Stephen LaBerge, Ph. D.and Howard Rheingold
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Skyflower
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Lori~ann


« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2008, 10:03:04 am »

Final Preparations: Learning to Relax Deeply


Before you are ready to practice techniques for inducing lucid dreams, you need to be able to
put yourself into a state of attentive relaxation, with alert mind and deeply relaxed body. The
two exercises described below will show you how. They are important for helping you to clear
your mind of the day’s worries so that you can focus on lucid dream induction. Lucid dreaming
requires concentration,
which is nearly impossible to achieve with a distracted mind and tense
body. Before going on to the next chapter, master these essential techniques.
EXERCISE: PROGRESSIVE RELAXATION
1. Lie down on a firm surface
If you can’t lie down, sit in a comfortable chair. Close your eyes.
2. Attend to your breathing
Pay attention to your breathing and allow it to deepen. Take a few complete breaths by moving
your diaphragm down slightly while inhaling, pushing the abdomen out and drawing air into the
lungs from the bottom up. Allow yourself to sigh deeply on the exhale, letting tension escape
as you do so.
3. Progressively tense and relax each muscle group
Tense and then relax all the muscle groups in your body, one at a time. Begin with your
dominant arm. Bend your hand backward at the wrist, as if you are trying to place the back of
the hand on your forearm. Hold it tight for five to ten seconds. Pay attention to the tension.
Release the tension and relax. Note the difference. Tense and relax again. Pause for twenty to
thirty seconds as you take a deep abdominal breath, then exhale slowly. Repeat
the procedure
for the other hand. Then repeat the tension-relaxation-tension-relaxation sequence for your
forearms, upper arms, forehead, jaws, neck, shoulders, abdomen, back, buttocks, legs, and feet.
Pause between each major muscle group, take a deep breath, and release more tension in a sigh.
4. Let go of all tension
After you have worked through all muscle groups, let them go limp. Wherever you feel tension,
perform an additional tense-and-relax sequence. Cultivate the image of tension flowing out of
your body like an invisible fluid. Every time you tense and relax, remind yourself that the
relaxation is greater than the tension that preceded it.
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Lori Anne
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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2019, 07:53:34 pm »

Next exercise
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The Great Spirit, in placing men on the Earth,
desired them to take good care of the ground and do each
other no harm...
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