Are dream character's conscious?

What have you learned from your dream characters? What do they say, what do they represent, what motivates them, why do they exist?
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HAGART
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Are dream character's conscious?

Postby HAGART » 04 Dec 2013 00:44

I had some good talks with a few DC's recently, and am still trying to get in their heads and see what makes them tick. I used the term 'dream guide' to help find one. I'm still not sure what a dream guide is, or if the seemingly self-awareness that some dream characters have are just an illusion. Here's an interesting experience I had:

I became lucid in my own bed after a dream. I guess you could call it a DEILD, or like having a false awakening, but being lucid. I got up and went downstairs, and I wanted to meet a dream character that knew it was a dream and would seem self aware. Not those zombie-types... you know the ones I mean.

My family was sitting at a table and I asked them if there was a "Dream Guide" around for me to talk to. My mother handed me a picture in a frame and it was a picture of myself. She said your brother has one just like this. I was getting annoyed and said, no, that's not it. I walked around the house, looking around for someone to show up, and when I returned back to the table, my family was gone, but there was a stranger now sitting in a chair. He had long hair and seemed European. He reminds me of the bad guy from Ghostbusters II. For some reason he seemed familiar and I said, "You remind me of my first "dream guide". (I actually used air-quotes when I spoke, showing how skeptical I am). I'm confused about you." He replied, "But of course you are." I asked, "What do you think about? Do you have choices and make decisions?" He said, "Yes". I asked, "Give me an example... if you can". (I was skeptical he could and was starting to doubt him). He said, "I once made the squeakiest nylon." I had to ask, "The squeakiest nylon?!" He started to ramble on, and I didn't make sense of it, but I did hear what sounded like, 'You must force a choice'.... and then he said, 'You cannot force choices'....

Then I knew he was just contradicting himself, and he must have picked up on my feelings and knowing he was going to lose the argument he attacked me. He was on top of me and we wrestled, the visuals were going hay-wire as he morphed and disappeared, but I could still feel his weight on me. I tried to push him off, but he was too heavy despite not being able to see him anymore. I saw two nails and I was worried he was going to jab them in my eyes. I wasn't scared, but I could feel pain, so I knew I had to do something before he used those nails. (Just me thinking about it would have made it come true). I decided to alter my perception of what is up and what is down, and I was now 'on top', and pushing him 'down' into the ceiling. (I flipped gravity and felt good knowing my lucid powers were stronger than his!) We continued fighting for a while, and I eventually woke up.


Perhaps I was just fighting myself and wrestling with my own thoughts! Still, it would be nice to have a reoccurring dream guide type character that could help me out in the lucid dream world. But I question them too much and they don't like that! But I won't stop just yet. 8-)
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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taniaaust1
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby taniaaust1 » 04 Dec 2013 02:29

Great thinking to flip up and down :) .

Do you ever when you get yourself in these situations just go "I got to just stop thinking about that" ...and use a stop of the thought to actually prevent something like getting nails in the eyes. (that sounded aweful).
The only thing to fear is the fear itself

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HAGART
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby HAGART » 04 Dec 2013 06:15

My thoughts certainly alter dreams. And it can become like Murphy's Law, where if I think something bad will happen, it ends up of happening.

In retrospect, there are better ways to deal with a hostile dream character like that. I could have tried to reason with him, or think 'happy thoughts'. In the end, nobody won the fight. It was only broken by my awakening. So fighting was completely pointless. (But HE started it!)

And why did he fight me to begin with? I must have had thoughts that he would. A few days earlier I got attacked by some other dream characters that just lunge at me and start choking me. I don't know why.....
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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Goldkoron
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby Goldkoron » 04 Dec 2013 07:07

HAGART wrote:My thoughts certainly alter dreams. And it can become like Murphy's Law, where if I think something bad will happen, it ends up of happening.

In retrospect, there are better ways to deal with a hostile dream character like that. I could have tried to reason with him, or think 'happy thoughts'. In the end, nobody won the fight. It was only broken by my awakening. So fighting was completely pointless. (But HE started it!)

And why did he fight me to begin with? I must have had thoughts that he would. A few days earlier I got attacked by some other dream characters that just lunge at me and start choking me. I don't know why.....


I am glad that I rarely have dream characters in my lucid dreams, hearing tons of stories of dream characters suddenly attacking people.
Do a reality check

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Summerlander
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby Summerlander » 04 Dec 2013 19:09

There seems to be an ostensible connection between your desire to find a "dream guide" and finding your apparitional family in your lucid dream. The mother figure connotes conceiving and guidance. In this lucid dream scenario, the mother can be a source of valuable conceptions, and, its motherly presence is possibly indicative of the most prolific guide image your subconscious could produce at the time. However, you, the waking ego in the dream world, expected more. It may be that the mother figure was too familiar for your liking, perhaps you would have preferred a more unfamiliar apparition, like a total stranger. (Perhaps a tinge of mystery in the "dream guide" conception was amiss and would have been appreciated.)

Not entirely happy with what was presented before you at first glance, an assumption was made: the dream guide was yet to reveal itself. The mother figure, in my opinion, did reveal the real primogenitor, as it were, when she handed you the framed picture while adding that your sibling is alike. In short, she was saying (in answer to your question): "You're around, you're the guide."

Call it conjecture but it seems to me that lucid dreamers commonly search for answers in lucid dreams with certain expectations that add to the element of excitement and fantasy. Sometimes lucid dreams do provide some real, honest answers but they are not always satisfactory solutions by the waking ego's standards - not to mention that, at times, the 'revelations' are uncomfortable, and, even if truthful, are sometimes deemed to be unacceptable.

Are dream characters conscious? Well, what does it mean to be conscious when consciousness is poorly defined even by scientists? Picture this. You were awake when you drove to work today, but, were you conscious of the journey or on autopilot? What is that? Who took over when you were out? Before we can even begin to address the question of DC sentience, we need to philosophise about our own and what that means. Even if we never get the truth, at least we will always find value in our interactions with them, particularly whilst lucid dreaming.

Now, let's deal with Hagart's Vigo...(I couldn't resist the dub) :mrgreen:

Vigo and Hagart wrestle in lucid dreamland. Vigo appears to express a turmoil of contradictions, in part stemming from the everlasting debate between two distinct parts of Hagart's mind: the logical and the abstract. This source is obviously older, in fact since time (Hagart) began, and lies primordially at the roots of the mind. The other contributing reason for Vigo's conflicting expression and reckless behaviour is the more recent process of integrating new concepts vis-a-vis jettisoning old ones.

The lucid dreamer often has a challenge. I'm not exempt. Hagart's not exempt. Stephen LaBerge is not exempt. No lucid dreamer is! He or she may ask for answers or solutions but these tend to come encrypted in the lucid dream world. We often face the task of sussing out riddles generated by our unconscious minds. After all, the oneironaut has entered an alien world, one unlike the waking world in many respects, and its 'inhabitants' may speak the visitor's native language, but their 'vernacular' can be profoundly different. In a sense, we deal with another dimension and the rules are different.

"Squeakiest nylon" sounds like something the Mad Hatter would say, teasing the dreamer with words that may in fact hide something of value, or in the least lead to unconstrained ways of thinking which may inspire creativity and even churn out the very solutions we seek. It might be about unlocking something deep with your mind, and, in the process, grow as Alice did. You may want to start by asking yourself what "nylon" means to you (what comes to your head) and perhaps summon Vigo next time you visit that world and ask him where he's coming from with that. Never mind the fight you had with him, let bygones be bygones. He may not be much of a guide (if there is even such a thing), you may even beat him at simple maths, but befriend him and see what he has to share. I would.

Vigo expresses notions centreing upon free will - the strong illusion of making choices, and yet, having none as every choice requires causation. Perhaps there is a parallel clue here, an indirect link, or a suspicion deeply embedded in your mind: DCs (some of them) seem sentient, but perhaps this, too, is an illusion. I believe they can be useful regardless of whether or not they are conscious. Vigo may not seem to make much sense at first (perhaps ask him to be more explicit), and he would undoubtedly lose a logical debate against Hagart, but Vigo has the potential to inspire Hagart with his logically indigent abstractionism.
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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HAGART
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby HAGART » 05 Dec 2013 05:28

Summerlander wrote:"Squeakiest nylon" sounds like something the Mad Hatter would say, teasing the dreamer with words that may in fact hide something of value, or in the least lead to unconstrained ways of thinking which may inspire creativity and even churn out the very solutions we seek. It might be about unlocking something deep with your mind, and, in the process, grow as Alice did. You may want to start by asking yourself what "nylon" means to you (what comes to your head)


I realize I will never win a mental battle with a DC. Even "I", in a lucid dream, am not thinking 100% rationally, and they don't care to be reasonable anyway. The illogical statement, "I once made the squeakiest nylon", reminds me of some the the abstract thoughts I get during hypnagogia/hypnopompia. I sometimes wake up from those and wonder why I was thinking such a strange thought. I think dream characters tap into that same phenomenon, and speak as if they are experiencing those same abstract thoughts and ideas. (That's where it comes from, the subconscious). But "I" am separate and hear it in the dream and try to rationalize it.

What does it mean to me? I envision a man-made thread that is incredibly smooth, perfect, and not pitted at the microscopic level. I felt it was a scientific breakthrough he helped design. It's yellow and a single strand that is part of a rope. Perhaps smoother than anything else known to man. (I still don't know what that even means, but that's what I envision whenever I re-read it and think about it).

Summerlander wrote:when she handed you the framed picture while adding that your sibling is alike. In short, she was saying (in answer to your question): "You're around, you're the guide."


I interpreted the picture of myself to mean that I, myself, am the ultimate dream guide in a lucid dream too, but I didn't say it. I like to let others interpret it without my influence. That's probably why I was so hard on "Vigo" :lol: . I felt like, "Who's this guy think he is? He's a nobody. I'm the true god here in this dream!" (Sounds very arrogant and even now I feel some shame in it, which may be why he fought me). And when my mother said my brother has one just like it, I thought she was saying they are better than me, already achieving what I was seeking, which annoyed me. (I'm a middle child which can lead to a slight inferiority complex). :roll:
And not all my lucid dreams are like this. I was acting particularly smug in this one. Which has enlightened me just now, because this whole time I was thinking HE was the smug one. No! He was feeding off my emotions. That's my theory anyway.

Summerlander wrote:Are dream characters conscious? Well, what does it mean to be conscious when consciousness is poorly defined even by scientists?


I was thinking at the time, that at the most basic level of any consciousness is some sort of a decision making capability. You have choice A and choice B and you make a decision. Plain and simple. Even ants could do that. Maybe I should ask something else next time. In fact, I already have in the past and should share some other lucid dream anecdotes. This isn't the first time I have questioned this.
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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HAGART
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby HAGART » 05 Dec 2013 05:54

I also wonder sometimes if my subconscious is conscious, or self aware to some extent. Perhaps not of the outside world, knowing capital cities, and celebrities and all that trivial stuff. Perhaps it is aware, but only of the internal workings of our minds. That's their whole world to them. And in dreams, we give it a form. And that form can be more in control of our dreams than "I" am. (Which is why I think a dream guide could be a helpful tool in a lucid dream).

I'll jump to the point in the dream where I start to converse with my 'dream characters'. But to give an idea of what type of dream it was, I ended a lucid dream and it faded, and I remained still and waited to see what would happen next and then I realized I was in bed, but still asleep, so I got up and walked away. A lot like an OBE. I find these OBE-type lucid dreams are far more vivid and 'concrete' or 'stable'.

So my plan was to talk to some dream characters and I must say I had a hard time getting out of the 'house' I was in, but managed to cut a hole in the wall with my finger. Then I was outside. Freedom! I was in an urban setting and I saw a public bus, so I hailed it and it actually stopped. I heard a voice from the bus say, 'Hey, this is not my stop!'. I walked over with extreme confidence and didn't care if I ruined someones 'busy schedule'; I was going to explain my purpose once I got on. Before I could enter, two doors opened in the front and mid section of the bus and many Chinese people flooded out. I said hello to them all as I got on and hoped there were some people left. Once on board I looked around and it was still full of people for me to talk to and all Chinese for some reason. (If you know my background I grew up in Hong Kong and 'felt at home there' even though I am 'Gwai Lo' <-- Google it up).

So I am on a city bus full of people and I announce to them all, "Do you guys know this is a dream?" They all answer, "Yes", but not in unison but the way a crowd of people would answer with each being slightly off timing of the other. Then I heard a laugh coming from the front of the bus and I looked over and saw the back of someone's head, the bus driver I assumed, and he had a giant poofy head of hair. It was brown hair, but it reminded me of a clown. I then joked with the rest of the passengers, "Then why am I not the one driving this thing!" (It's an inside joke between me and myself. I often wonder who the true pilot of my body and my dreams is.... "me" or my subconscious? Am I, the ego-sense of self, just here for the ride all the time?)

I forget what else I said, but I remember having a hard time wording it, and yet, every passenger intuitively knew what I was talking about.

I had a lapse in placement and the next thing I knew I was walking down a narrow street like 'Stanley Market' from Hong Kong and it was dark like night and everything was gritty and wet like most dilapidated Asian markets in HK where it rains a lot and they are outdoor markets. (I love that though and still felt at home). I was now talking to a voice coming from nowhere and I acted like I was holding a cell phone to my left ear, and I spoke with my subconscious over the 'phone'. I asked, "Are you my subconscious?" (I didn't expect a straight up answer), but a female voice said, "Yes." So I got deep and asked a question I had day dreamed about in the day. I asked, "From your point of view are you conscious and am I subconscious?" She laughed! She said, "You are barely conscious." I said, "So you think you're smarter than me?!" (I was just joking around and poking fun. I always think my DC's are smarter than me.) I asked, "Where are you now?" (Remembering I use to be on that bus). I then said, "I'm in Chinatown". (I thought it would be hard to explain Stanley Market and Hong Kong to her as if she were a perfect stranger so I just simplified it for some reason). She said, "I am nowhere." I said, "Do you want me to bring you here?" (Like creating a physical incarnation of her). She said, "Why don't you come here to the dead zone?" I was a little spooked by her word choice. I had to ask, "Did you say, 'Dead Zone'?" She said, "It's not as scary as traditions in Chinatown!"

I decided to try it.

I didn't know how, but the only thing I could think of was laying down and closing my eyes in the dream. I ended up seeing strange imagery very similar to what I am use to when I remain still with eyes closed after a lucid dream in hopes of another, which is the same way this one started. Finally, I decided to stop and I got up in a strange place I can only describe as a 'Grandmother's house with flower-motif furniture and teacups everywhere'. I willed a person to raise from the floor with my hand like sprouting a live person or dream character and it worked. She was a 4 foot tall, Asian woman, but with a few 'alien' features as well and more of a humanoid like in Star Trek. I asked, "Are you the same from before?"

She said, "No."


It ended very soon after.
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.

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Summerlander
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby Summerlander » 05 Dec 2013 11:46

Woah! I like that one. Lucid dreams like this is the reason why I enjoyed Robert Waggoner's book. I know you didn't do that here but I have thought about communicating with my subconscious using a phone in the lucid dream world. I find it deeply interesting, especially the words "dead zone."

Scientists have phone that if people stop thinking too hard about solving a problem and just let the "unconscious" side take over, those eureka moments will come unexpectedly! We have to remember that the higher cortical areas do a lot of thinking but are slow to act (slow response). However, closer to the primordial layer, there is not much thinking (dead zone) but the response is fast and intuitional. While the neocortex is more constrained by thinking patterns, the lower one contains a subconscious see of information where anything goes, and this zone often makes associations between concepts that the logical side wouldn't normally do.

Now get this: lucid dreaming provides the perfect opportunity to make sure that those unusual associations, mishmash of thoughts, and new ideas don't go unnoticed. We can probe unexplored areas of our minds and what's more, communication between waking self and subconscious mind can be established. After all, the corpus collosum connects both brain hemispheres.

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"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

Vonozar
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby Vonozar » 05 Dec 2013 22:23

Using a phone to communicate with one's subconscious? That's a great idea! I'm going to have to try that. :) That sounds like a really cool dream Hagart, thanks for sharing it. I wish we could loan DCs to other oneironauts for a bit. I would loan you mine since they are pretty much always aware of what's going on and communicate logically. You could 'probe' them all you want! :lol: I wish I could get just a few more of those lesser-aware characters actually. It's not all that fun sometimes. They aren't impressed by anything. They say "Big deal, it's a dream. I can do that too. Anyone can." (Buzz kills :? ) And I have only gotten to try and convince a DC that they were dreaming once. Everyone else already knew. It can get kinda boring actually. :/

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HAGART
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Re: Are dream character's conscious?

Postby HAGART » 05 Dec 2013 23:05

Summerlander wrote:We have to remember that the higher cortical areas do a lot of thinking but are slow to act (slow response). However, closer to the primordial layer, there is not much thinking (dead zone) but the response is fast and intuitional.


That would explain why dream characters answer questions and "I", the slower area of thinking, react to them and don't know where it came from. It's thinking faster than "I" in a dream, so they appear to have a separate consciousness.

I've used phones before in lucid dreams and they are a great way to talk. No need for a DC figure and feels like I am talking straight to my subconscious and cut out 'the middle man'. They also tend to talk without any personality and just state things matter-of-fact.

Vonozar wrote:I wish I could get just a few more of those lesser-aware characters actually. It's not all that fun sometimes. They aren't impressed by anything


I never thought of that, but I suppose you're right. It would get boring if they always knew it was a dream and your lucid powers and 'magic tricks' never impressed them. That's some of my favorite things to do when I become lucid around others in a dream. I like to show off my 'powers'. But I've had some dreams where they DC's are aware it's a dream, and they are not impressed.
If we all lucid dreamed this world would be a better place.


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