Page 1 of 1

On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 19 Jan 2016 19:49
by shutterbugjen
(crud. I just wrote this entire post then with a single keystroke managed to destroy it all. Then of course I performed a reality check but it turns out everything is on the up-and-up so here we go, 2nd attempt...)

I am having difficulty recalling my dream intentions once I become lucid. I am a beginner at this anyway, however in my last two lucid dreams once I attained lucidity, I either didn't care about what my previous "intention" was, or I simply forgot it. For example, yesterday during the day I found myself staring at a body of water. This activity generally puts me in a mild trance as I watch the light dance across the surface of the water, and while in this somewhat meditative state I thought "I'd like to experience BEING water in my next lucid dream." Something else I tried from a suggestion in Stephen LaBerge's book "Exploring Lucid Dreaming" was rather than saying, "I will have a lucid dream tonight," to instead make a statement of expectation that a lucid dream will come soon, so "I can't wait for the next time I become lucid" so that I would not feel I am setting myself up for failure or disappointment when lucidity does NOT come.

But I digress. Between the meditative dream incubation of wanting to experience being water and a slight change in my verbiage, I successfully became lucid last night in a situation that should have put me directly in my intended path. I became lucid sitting on a sandy ocean floor, surrounded by nothing but water. No other sea life, rocks, reefs, nothing. Just me and the water. I was seated in a cross-legged position, holding my breath. I realized it was a dream so to check, I decided to try to inhale with my mouth closed and holding my nose-- and I did. But at this point I had completely forgotten my stated intention of wanting to experience being the water, and instead I decided to transform myself into a mermaid. (Let me tell you, the strength of a mermaid tail is something to be reckoned with...) I swam around for a few minutes and sang one of the songs from "The Little Mermaid." No other dream figures entered the scene, it remained just me in the water. I did not feel as strongly lucid in this dream as I have in others, and in fact I very nearly forgot it in the morning (which begs another question, have I become lucid on other occasions and not remembered? That would seriously stink.) I kept lucidity for a few minutes and then it faded away.

So, does anyone have any suggestions for better recall of my dream intentions? It's fun to explore what just happens to show up, but I'd love to be able to check off boxes on my list of "things to do in lucid dreams." (Maybe I need to conjure up a lucid dream in which I stop being such a boring stick-in-the-mud who likes making checklists. Haha...)

Thanks, and sweet dreams!

Re: On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 19 Jan 2016 20:17
by Summerlander
A mermaid! What an interesting dream. Stick to the lists as they help you to formulate action plans. Have you tried imagining your planned lucid dreams before they happen from a first person perspective. What I mean is, instead of looking at water and desiring to become it in a lucid dream, think about what being water would feel like. :shock:

Water is most likely not conscious, so there is no what it is like to be water. (Not like a bat or a monkey, anyway.) So your best bet is to imagine how water could possibly feel if it were conscious. Would it be aware of it's own properties? (Would you see water; feel wet; hear the sound of liquid ripples or waves?) Don't beat yourself up if sometimes things don't go according to plan--bizarre thinking can happen in lucid dreams and lucidity is something that needs maintenance. :-)

Alan Worsely once experienced a similar lack of control while conducting an experiment. Here is a link which is somewhat pertinent:

[ Post made via Android ] Image

Re: On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 19 Jan 2016 23:34
by shutterbugjen
Thanks Summer! It's easy to forget that even our lucid mind in the dream won't be the same as our waking mind. I just remembered another interesting aspect of this particular dream-- I can recall it from two perspectives: one, as the participant experiencing the lucid dream and two, as an observer watching myself in the lucid dream. That has never happened before for me. I usually experience my dreams (lucid and non) directly. This was a simultaneous experience while dreaming that I recall quite well. Very unusual phenomenon!

[ Post made via iPhone ] Image

Re: On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 20 Jan 2016 06:17
by Prince Demitri
Hey Jen!

As for advice to help you out, Summer was spot on with his suggestions. :D

As for getting to swim around as a mermaid, how cool is that!? I'm pretty sure I've had a dream where I've done something similar, but in my dream I was a selkie exploring a shipwreck, looking for treasure while trying to figure out what the name of the ship was.

As for being something amorphous and flowing like water, I've been fog before. Summer hit the nail on the head when he said to imagine what it feels like to be a conscious version of a substance like that. Imagine that you have the qualities of the substance, and then when you lucidly dream and try it, you can adopt those qualities (effectively becoming the water/fog/fire/lightning/etc).

Being able to visualize and include other senses in your visualizations is a very handy skill to develop. As with all skills, it's easier for some and more difficult for others. But for all, practice will develop and strengthen the skill.

One of the unexpected qualities I experienced when I dreamt of being fog was the odd sensation of moving thru a grove of trees and having them brush past various parts of me, and within me. I wonder if you will feel things like fish swimming thru you when you're water...? That would be interesting!

Cheers! 8-)

Re: On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 20 Jan 2016 14:55
by RealityCheck
I am not the most experienced lucid dreamer, and this happens to me often when I am not fully-fully lucid, especially DILDs. Most of the times, as soon as I realize I'm dreaming, I would perform a reality check and immediately jump out the window without another thought, then the dream would continue on its own without me really controlling much.

One thing that helped me remember things from waking life was to first slow down and examine your surroundings. The first few times I began lucid dreaming, my goal was to feel the textures in the dream. One night, I finally remembered and ran my hand across the walls, and yes, it was incredible.

Sometimes it just depends if you're at your fullest lucid state. It helps to imagine in waking life what you would like to do if you were to be dreaming at the moment, i.e. wanting to create flames around your arms, you would look at your arms and imagine scenarios on how to do it. I didn't have much trouble with recalling lucid dream intentions which I think was due to my strong determination and wish to fulfill it. :)

Hope this helped a little ><

Re: On Dream Incubation & Recalling Intention

Posted: 20 Jan 2016 15:30
by shutterbugjen
Thank you, RC! My next plan for lucidity is to do just what you said- to explore the dream environment I find myself in. I need to work on stabilizing my dreams as they just don't last very long. The dream I mentioned in my OP was definitely a much lesser degree of lucidity than others I have had. I'm still waiting to have one where that "POP" of everything coming into sharper focus occurs.