Both direct WILDs and dream returns can spontaneous or intended. With the direct method on is entering sleep with unbroken consciousness and then usually retaining it throughout the the sleep process. The dream process in a direct WILD is almost identical to the normal stages of sleep.
Normal sleep goes like this:
1. One loses consciousness;
2. hypnagogic images start as the brain has slowed to a theta wave state;
3. non rem dreams start as the theta state becomes deeper and stabilizes;
4. the brain keeps slowing until thought, emotions and dream images are stopped as the brain enters a delta wave state;
5. Rem muscle atonia starts or SP (though in my experience SP are a type of dream) putting the body into it's deepest state of sleep;
6. REM dreams start as the brain switches back on to a theta wave state.
One can wake up in any of these stages of sleep, so it does not follow "that one goes into SP every time one sleeps" as is normally falsely claimed. Nor is it true that the body enters SP so that one does not thrash about while dreaming. People act out their dreams during the NREM dream stage and often violently and it's out of the non REM dream state that sleep talking and sleep walking occur, so the common theories of what SP is and why it occurs are both false. REM muscle atonia normally happens after the brain has been completely rested in delta sleep and it's likely function is to put the body into a complete state of rest.
Hypnopomic images that can enter the real world usually happen when one wakes up in a delta state and the brain has not sped up enough before one wakes up and they can be what seems to be waking one up too, but that's an illusion.
The direct method differs from normal sleep in only a couple ways: One does not lose consciousness and one does not enter delta sleep so the process is like this:
1. One is wide awake, but relaxing the body as for normal sleep;
2. hypnagogic images start to appear;
3. NREM dreams start;
4. REM muscle atonia starts, which is normally experience as just a quick dream image;
5. REM dreams start, which are normally much more vivid and trick one into thinking they're real for a moment.
Note: you could enter delta sleep if you wanted to and that is really the goal of Buddhist and Hindu dream yogas- to mediate as close as possible to 24-7 (very glad I'm an ex-buddhist ) experienced mediators can enter delta brain wave states while wide awake and with their eyes open and unblinking. I can do it, but not without blinking, so I know what delta brain waves feel like when one wakes up in them.
With dream return one usually enters directly into NREM dreams and so does not do through Rem muscle atonia at all and normally does not see HI before one returns to the dream. So the short answer is that doing WILDs one never has to have an SP experience and the same is true of OBE. SP is not 'the holy grail of lucid dreaming and OBE' as Nicholas Newport claims.
Experiments have shown that people who have had their sleep interrupted and then go back to sleep often experience SP ,so the WBTB experience might kick these off for you, if you're using that method.
And there is only one thing we say to death "not today"
- Syrio Forel
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