A Dream Induced Lucid Dream (DILD) is any dream in which you become spontaneously lucid. Your lucidity is prompted by the unreal nature of the dream. You'll consciously recognize that something is out of place (from talking animals, to oddly-colored scenery, to deceased people seemingly alive and well). The realization creates instant lucidity and your dreamworld suddenly becomes real...
DILD lucid dreams are more frequent than contrasting WILDs. In a laboratory study of 76 lucid dreamers, almost three-quarters were dream-initiated, and only one-quarter were wake-initiated. And those are probably skewed figures. Lucid dream researcher Dr Stephen LaBerge notes that WILDs in the lab appear much more common than those experiences at home.
So, in your quest to become a lucid dreamer, the most useful trick up your sleeve will be to understand how to induce DILDs with frequency.
There are many types of Dream Induced Lucid Dreams - and so, many ways to create the crucial moment of self-awareness within the dreamstate.
Proficient lucid dreamers often have spontaneous DILDs without deliberately incubating them. It becomes natural - automatic, even - to comprehend when you are dreaming. Sometimes a non-specific cue, such as entering an unfamiliar locale, will trigger your inner awareness: "Of course! I'm dreaming!"
However, beginners need to spend time entraining this mindset and habitually looking for dream signs and other "reality tests". In time, your dreams will present the opportunities for you naturally - and it is your task to act on them.
One example is looking at a piece of text in a dream. As the conscious brain lies dormant during sleep, your written language skills are severely depleted. It becomes very difficult to read text - and if you can, the words don't remain constant. So, the next time you dream of reading a newspaper headline, you may just wonder, "Am I dreaming?" Make sure your next action is to look away, then look back and read it again. As the words will almost certainly change, you have valid evidence that you are dreaming and your lucidity will surge and intensify.
Other popular ways to trigger a Dream Induced Lucid Dream are: reality checks, meditation and dream incubation, and Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreams (MILD).
Below are summaries of 8 popular DILD methods, in alphabetical order, with links to my full tutorials on this website. You don't need to learn every single technique here to experience a DILD - simply pick the ones that appeal to you the most and show them your commitment over the next few weeks.
Developed by British lucid dreamer and author, Daniel Love, the Cycle Adjustment Technique involves adjusting your daily wake-up time to naturally influence your body's chemistry and increase your consciousness during morning REM sleep.
Everyone has dream signs, it's just that lucid dreamers tend to recognize them more. A dream sign is any type of clue that exposes the dream as unreality. Increasing your awareness of dream signs creates spontaneous in-dream lucidity...
Meditation is an excellent primer for lucid dreaming, because it hones several different skills conducive to lucidity. Here are two easy breathing and guided meditation techniques to improve your visualization skills and self-awareness. Through visualization you can incubate your desired dream themes.
Dr LaBerge's famous MILD method combines several individual DILD skills described here: dream recall (journaling), reality checks, affirmations (self hypnosis) and visualization. He created it while studying at university to have lucid dreams on demand.
To perform a reality check while you're awake means to question your conscious experience, even though you know quite obviously you're awake. But to question it inside the dreamworld creates a whole different revelation.
It has myriad applications in the world of personal development - and self hypnosis can help lucid dreamers too. Through meditation and affirmations, self hypnosis produced some of my very first Dream Induced Lucid Dreams.
Subliminal stimuli affect you below your threshold for conscious perception. We decided to see if it was possible to induce lucid dreams subliminally by creating two animated videos giving rapid-fire lucid dream triggers. See for yourself...
This is another sleep cycle adjustment technique. It involves creating a period of alert wakefulness in the early mornings, before returning to bed. This promotes greater consciousness in your dreams and improves dream recall.
Do some people DILD naturally, without even knowing it? You bet.
Sometimes readers tell me they have been lucid dreaming their whole lives, only they didn't know it was called lucid dreaming, and they assumed that everyone dreams that way. This is a startling admission. Natural lucid dreamers? You'd think they'd be shouting from the rooftops! But when you grow up with the ability to have DILDs without effort, it becomes routine. You take it for granted.
Similarly, although you may have spent decades experiencing only non-lucid dreams, it is possible to entrain the mindset to have multiple DILDs a week. The more you practice, the more DILDs you'll have, and soon it will become second nature. Your dreaming mind will present you with multiple cues and moments of lucidity, and it will be your choice to embrace them. The Dream Induced Lucid Dream, like all the techniques described on this website, is a totally learnable skill.
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For centuries, Tibetan Buddhists have been working on waking up in their dreams, so that they can "wake up" at the moment of their death. They also believe that whatever cultural assumptions you have during life will become true upon death. Can lucid dreaming prepare us for the dying process? What might happen at the actual moment of death? Why are we scared of death and how might bodiless lucid experiences help to reduce our fear? In this interview, Dr Clare Johnson and Dr Keith Hearne dive into the lucid void, Tibetan Buddhism, and lucid dreaming as an emotional and spiritual preparation for death.
Does this face look familiar? It should. This is the result of image averaging - a technique in which multiple headshots are averaged out into a single face. In this case, our composite guy was generated by psychology student and photography enthusiast, Bill Lytton. Lytton averaged out 32 attractive male celebrity faces. To avoid personal bias, he referred to Maxim's Hot 100 and other opinion polls. He also averaged out a bunch of unattractive male faces for comparison.
It's a myth that you could exhaust yourself having a great big run in a lucid dream. After all, your real muscles are paralyzed during sleep. Your body isn't really running or burning up energy. So why would you feel depleted? So, in terms of physical energy depletion, there's really no logic to this argument. But what about dreams being mentally or emotionally tiring? The best way to test this is to survey lucid dreamers themselves. Go ahead, take our poll. My intuitive response is no - and that's based on my 17 years of personal experience. Lucid dreams aren't tiring for me at all.
Experts agree that everyone is capable of having lucid dreams. Dreaming itself is a normal function of the mind. We all dream every night, even if we don't remember. And we all achieve conscious awareness while awake every single day. So what does it mean to combine these states? Why, the amazing ability to have conscious - or lucid - dreams. Sounds simple, doesn't it? So why do I keep hearing from people who say they can't achieve their first lucid dream?