Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Discuss lucid dreaming techniques including dream recall, MILD, WILD, meditation and other ways of attaining lucidity in dreams.
fdarcy
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Joined: 16 Dec 2012 04:05

Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby fdarcy » 16 Dec 2012 04:12

(I sent the below to Rebecca, and she said to post here to get feedback from others too.)

I’m about 45 days into my purchase of Fast Track, and have not yet had a Lucid Dream.

- I read all of the material.

- I’ve had lots of regular dreams (40+) that I have recorded, and analyzed for themes.

- I’ve done the guided meditation MP3s multiple times.

- I’ve practiced doing the reality check (pushing fingers through palm).

- I even had one instance where I walked into a room in my house and a massive green praying mantis was on the wall. I immediately did a reality check (after running out of the room). Nope, I was awake, and there was really a massive green praying mantis on my wall!


My problem seems to be that when in a dream it never occurs to me that dreaming, or even sleeping, are possible. Is there some particular piece of the Lucid Dreaming Fast Track course that I should be concentrating on to help myself realize I could be dreaming while in a dream? Given the praying mantis example above, I do realize that I could be dreaming while I’m awake, but it doesn’t seem to occur to me while actually dreaming.

danmc
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Joined: 02 Dec 2012 03:27

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby danmc » 16 Dec 2012 18:45

Reality checks are an effective way to induce lucid dreams, even if they don't seem to be working at the moment, so keep doing them. The idea, as you know, is that doing them enough brings the habit into the dream state where you begin doing reality checks in the dream state. This is all very good. But reality checks have a broader reason for working, and once you see that, you can expand them in other ways.

Dreaming is all about attention (IMO). When you do a reality check you are consciously with that attention. You are gauging the experience in your knowing. For much of our waking day, our attention is all over the map, flitting from one shiny object to the next. Doing a reality check not only fixes the attention for a moment, it fixes it in full awareness, and therein lies the benefit.

I'll try to illustrate this with an example. When you are watching t.v., you don't notice the t.v. even though you are looking directly at it. Why? Because it is the story (the program you are watching) that has your attention. If you have ever had the experience of the power going out while you are watching something, you've experienced the jarring effect it has when you get brought back from the story to yourself with a bang!

It's the same when going about your daily business. The story of your life has all your attention and, like the t.v., you fail to notice not only the myriad of things that the story is couched in, you fail to notice the fact that it is couched in your attention before all else.

So, if this can be considered to be a technique, it is this: Whenever possible, be with your attention and not with what is appearing in your attention. As often as it occurs to you, gently withdraw your attention form the story and place it back on itself: be aware of being aware, if you will.

Think of attention as a reservoir. If you are emptying the attention-reservoir by letting it flit haphazardly though the story, it exhausts itself, and there is nothing left over for noticing anything else. Instead, try to stay in the reservoir whenever possible.This will translate into the dream state by your attention not being so caught up in the story, and like the power going out while watching a television program, Bang!, you are in a position to notice the dreaming.

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LCDAnthony
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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby LCDAnthony » 16 Dec 2012 20:30

Even though this isn't my post...
That was an awesome way to put attention. Now it just makes me think.
So when we're on the computer and we're just playing games or such we don't realize we're actually playing the computer we just know what's on it or how to use it. Am I saying this right?

Thanks for helping me too! hahaha!

danmc
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Joined: 02 Dec 2012 03:27

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby danmc » 17 Dec 2012 02:21

LCDAnthony wrote:don't realize we're actually playing the computer we just know what's on it or how to use it. Am I saying this right?


Pretty much. I'm saying that when you are playing a video game, the story of the game has trapped your full attention, but if you were to stop and bring your attention into your awareness instead (explicitly observe what is happening with your attention), you break the spell of the story. This frees up your attention for noticing beyond the game you are playing. In dreams, the same rule is operative. The dream story traps your attention, but if you free the attention up, you may notice that you are, in fact, dreaming.

You can see how doing this is similar to a reality check, but its a more generalized version. As such, it's really good for day to day life as well. If you find yourself worrying, but manage to pull back and look, you'll see that the worrying amounts to you sitting there thinking, and that's it! The worries only existed in the story the thoughts were telling. You see that your attention doesn't have to go to the thoughts and the worrying lightens up all on its own. Like a reality check, the point of doing this in your day to day life is so that it will be as natural to do it in the dream state as in waking.

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HAGART
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Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby HAGART » 17 Dec 2012 04:54

danmc wrote:you break the spell of the story.


That is exactly what it feels like when you become lucid from within a dream. You realize the story, or dilemma doesn't matter and there is no solution anyway and you can do what you want from there.

We lose ourselves in books and movies all the time and they put us in a day dreams which are really not much different than any other dream really. But when lucid there is a mental shift and you feel as awake as you do right now reading this... or ARE you awake? And don't just do a physical reality check but also ponder internally how you are feeling and thinking right now and ask where you were five minutes ago and how you got here. If it was a dream, five minutes ago may have been a completely different place! And then it would be obvious.

We see bizarre things all the time when awake, so they are not always going to be the thing to snap us out of a dream stooper alone. And our minds rationalize crazy situations in dreams all the time too. I've done physical reality checks in dreams before and they work the way I would expect in real life, so you also have to think about things and the broader picture when taking a moment to reflect and do a reality check not only when awake but even more importantly when in a dream.

I hope I added to danmc's eloquent way of putting it.
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

fdarcy
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Joined: 16 Dec 2012 04:05

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby fdarcy » 17 Dec 2012 19:55

danmc, LCDAnthony, HAGART,

Thanks for the insights! So it sounds like I'm on the right track as far as reality checks go, and I just need to keep practicing them to turn them into a habit while dreaming as well. And once that happens, start to couple the reality checks with a "consciousness/attention" check to take myself out of the "trance" of whatever I'm involved in at that moment.

danmc
Posts: 37
Joined: 02 Dec 2012 03:27

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby danmc » 18 Dec 2012 02:55

Yes, keep doing the reality checks. What I was suggesting is that we are, in a sense, in a trance most of our day because we are obsessed with the story of "me", and this keeps the attention bound up. Just stop, as often as it occurs to you, and release yourself from that story. This is something to do while awake. It's really simple, and interesting exercise in and of itself. You will find out some very interesting things about yourself.

And Hagart made a really good point. When you do the reality check, see them all the way through. It's easy after a while to sort of half-ass them, especially if we are discouraged. Try not to fall in the habit of simply pressing your palm, or whatever your doing for a check, and that's that. Take a moment to to notice what you have been doing, what you are doing, really see what's happening even if it seems silly and obvious. Good luck!

lumencryster
Posts: 72
Joined: 04 Sep 2012 17:26

Re: Techniques to realize I'm dreaming when dreaming

Postby lumencryster » 19 Dec 2012 07:20

danmc wrote:Pretty much. I'm saying that when you are playing a video game, the story of the game has trapped your full attention, but if you were to stop and bring your attention into your awareness instead (explicitly observe what is happening with your attention), you break the spell of the story. This frees up your attention for noticing beyond the game you are playing. In dreams, the same rule is operative. The dream story traps your attention, but if you free the attention up, you may notice that you are, in fact, dreaming.

the way i see this is that learning to bring you're attention to you're awareness, you exercise this ability which makes it easier and more natural in dreams.


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