For those who have never experienced a lucid dream the idea may not hold much fascination. The term itself may not even make much sense! For those who have experience a lucid dream--especially one where the degree of lucidity was extremely high--the experience is simply out of this world--literally. Many people spend months, even years learning to acquire this skill. So what is a 'lucid dream'? And why is it desirable to have one?
Quite simply put, it is a dream wherein one remains asleep and dreaming yet is consciously aware that one is dreaming. It is hard for me to explain the magic and unbelievable experience this type of dream is. One really and truly becomes a magician during sleep time--a real magician, not an illusionist. Lucid dreaming is like being a God/dess--you create what you want, when you want, it, how you want it. Don't like a blue sky? Make it plaid. Don't enjoy living on earth? Go to another planet--heck, create another planet--and don't just do it at the whim of your unconscious; do it when you want, and be fully aware that you're doing it!
Oftentimes we are aware we are dreaming on some level. For example, when we have nightmares we wake ourselves up to stop the dream. Or sometimes we just happen to notice that things aren't exactly the same as they usually are in our waking lives.
In a lucid dream, however, one is completely aware that one is dreaming. The dreamer knows that she is asleep in her bed, remains asleep in her bed, yet stays in the dream world with full consciousness that she is there. When a person has a high degree of lucidity, that person not only recognizes that she is dreaming, she also understands the rules of the dream world--or rather, the lack thereof!
The lack of rules in dream life is what makes lucid dreaming so desirable. In dream life we can do things which are impossible to do in waking life. We can travel to other planets, fly to the stars, change the color of the sky--all by simply desiring to do so. And what's most exciting is we're aware we're doing it. A lucid dream is, quite simply, one of the most empowering experiences a person can have.
An example of the power one has in a lucid dream can be found in one of my own experiences with lucidity. I was dreaming that a plane had crashed in front of me. There was fire all around the crash site. I began running toward the wreckage to look for survivors and slowly became aware I was dreaming. Once I came to this awareness I decided that since I was dreaming I stopped running and willed the fire to go out. Then I realized that if I could do that, why should there by a plane crash at all? I then lifted the plane up, in Yoda-like fashion, and put it back into the sky.
When you learn to have lucid dreams, dream time becomes a playground--a place to explore, to learn, to grow. Perhaps more importantly, lucid dreaming provides an environment where one can achieve things one may find difficult to do in waking life. For example, lucid dreaming can be used to overcome phobias--if you are in control of the dream, you are in control of the object of the phobia, meaning it can't hurt you. You can even use lucid dreams to talk to symbols that appear and learn from them what they are trying to tell you!
Some people use lucid dreams to enhance their creativity or help them accomplish goals. In this capacity, lucid dreams can act much like creative visualizations. You see yourself accomplishing the goal and feeling what it feels like to accomplish the goal. On a subconscious level, you have accomplished the goal, and as quantum physics is teaching us, we attract what we subconsciously believe we can have.
Next week, we'll look at some techniques for helping us wake up in our dreams.
As always, sleep well and dream out loud!
*~Aisling Ireland~* is an ordained Spiritual Counselor providing dream interpretation and Tarot readings. To make an appointment check out her website at:
If you are new to lucid dreaming here are a couple of books to try. They are both by the same author.
The paperback is comprehensive, the hardback more of a summary of the info in the paperback, with a relaxation cd.