Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

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Pilgrim
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Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Pilgrim » 07 Jul 2016 01:11

A few days ago, I finished reading Robert Waggoner's Lucid Dreaming--Gateway to the Inner Self. Some thoughts and excerpts follow. (Unfortunately, my quotations from an ebook do not have fixed page numbers. The pagination alters based on orientation and formatting.)

In short, the book might be very useful for beginners for becoming aware of, and thus prompting, lucid dreams. If you do not have an interest in modern Psychology, the many references to Carl Jung will be a turn off.

I am unclear, from reading the mutual dreaming experiments between the author and Ed Kellogg, about the extent of scientific evidence.

The recurring theme of the book is a pantheistic-like world view, which the author corroborates based on his dreams. Here are a few quotes regarding his view.

"But when I opened up...what appeared was the larger and more complex, creative, wise, knowledgeable, and encompassing Self." P242

“I now seemed a part of a larger whole, always connected and aware. Not that I personally am divine, but that everything, underneath it all, is divine.” 282

“The experience of light has left me with deep feelings about the interconnectedness of all awareness and what underlies phenomenal reality.” 314

The author sites many examples of precognition, mutually shared dreams, and possible communication with the dead, as powers that corroborate his view that All is One and interconnected.

This Self, Oneness, which Waggoner sees as the wise orchestrator behind the dream, is what he encourages the reader to engage. The reward, he suggests, is special knowledge and power for life. Waggoner teaches repeatedly to shout out to the awareness while dreaming.

“He or she must stop focusing on the dream objects and dream figures and direct questions or intentions to a nonapparent awareness behind the dream.” 319

“Whenever we ask the dream to show us something, we use intent. When we shout, “Hey! I want to hear my feeling-tone!” we express our intent. When we shout, “Hey! I want to see more women in here when I return!” we use intent. The word intent comes from the Latin word intendere, meaning “to stretch toward.”

The last quote is an example of how Waggoner finds deep significance in words. To follow are more examples of how he views words.

“Calling dreams an illusion suggests the ancient Sanscrit term maya. However, as psychiatrist and philosopher Gordon Globus points out, maya actually suggests much more.”
“He writes: “One meaning of maya is translated as ‘illusion' but it also has its basis in the verbal root ma, which means ‘to make.” 389

“Lucid derives from the Latin, lucere meaning “to shine.” For many lucid dreamers seeking to project healing energy for the first time, it comes as quite a shock to find themselves, without any conscious intent, projecting light from their hands.”402

I disagree with his approach to language. When I say "lucid dreaming," for example, I definitely have no care or intent associated with "to shine" as he describes.

Waggoner does include two or three quotes from the Bible (even though his views of religion are instead derived from his dream experiences). The biblical view of prophetic events is that they will surely come to pass.

“I don't believe future events are predestined; they may, however, exist in a range of higher probability.” 727

“Using our beliefs, expectations, focus, intent, and will, we may assist in the reality-cocreating efforts of our larger Self as we interact with changing ideas, emotions, and information and spark the apparent world into its constant, ever-changing projected mental space to which we then react in a perpetual, ever changing Now." 803

Various spiritual powers are described in the Bible. Conclusion that a worldview is correct based on perceiving some degree of power/knowledge is what I challenge. Waggoner provides no basis for rigorous inspection, as per the advice of the apostle John in 1 Jn. 4:1: "Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God...." 1 Sam 28 describes how Saul summoned the spirit of the dead prophet Samuel by a medium. No dream even required!

Now, I did try to speak to awareness behind one of my dreams, to see what experience would arise. (I did not give thought in the dream to reconcile to my own worldview, as to whether I was talking to myself as being insane or talking to God.)

In this dream, I became lucid inside a building with quite a few people and busyness. So, I exited a door to the outside and went down some steps. I saw a full moon. Somehow, my expectation was that I could shout and that a response would be written across the moon. I tried to say "show me," but I was unable to speak for the first time ever. My speech sounded like one with unintelligible speech, as when you observe someone talking in sleep. I tried several times to speak but could not. Then, everything became dark in blackness, not like a dream that is graying out. I was fearful enough to call out to Jesus, and my words were clear again. Points of light began to appear and formed the shape of a man's head (close distance, resembling a shiny glass tracing). The voice I perceived as of Jesus, who said, "I am here." I woke and had peace.

I concluded that the basis for my difficulty in using Waggoner's approach to demand information regards the lack of reverence, in so far as it is not how I feel that I should relate to God. Or, if meaningful information had come in the sense of talking to myself, then I would be making myself to be like God.

Whether my dream had any spiritual significance or was only brain activity is not my point. It is possible to have an entirely different worldview from what Waggoner promotes as important, yet still have a successful paradigm for lucid dreams.

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Dane
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Dane » 07 Jul 2016 09:54

Hey pelgrim,
Although i haven't finished it yet ( at chapter 15 ), i find it a very interesting book.
Especially the level at which the author's unconsciousness responded baffled me.
I do must admit, i did skip chapter 13, which i intent to do at another moment.
I would recommend this book to any who cares about dreaming an sich.

Pilgrim wrote:Whether my dream had any spiritual significance or was only brain activity is not my point. It is possible to have an entirely different worldview from what Waggoner promotes as important, yet still have a successful paradigm for lucid dreams.


I'm sincerly confused about what you mean by this, could you clarify this for me ? :oops:
I returned from the abyss, as a married man. :D

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Pilgrim
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Pilgrim » 07 Jul 2016 10:19

To clarify, Dane, I am of the Christian perspective. I am open to the possibility of my dreams having actual spiritual lessons. Whether or not my dream experience had any spiritual signifance on this occasian is unimportant to my main idea. My point is that it is entirely unnecessary to embrace Waggoner's religious explanations for lucid dreaming. If I make no sense still, just tell me :ugeek:

konchusnz
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby konchusnz » 07 Jul 2016 11:18

I bought this book in 2009 with little knowledge at all of lucid dreaming and have since read another couple of similar books but always seem to go back to this book to inspire me again to get back into lucid dreaming. Having read it 3 or 4 times now I think the way Robert is able to (usually) leave his religious views and beliefs out of his lucid dreaming life is great. He briefly mentions having a lucid dream when he was younger and attempting to find 'God' with out any luck and then decided not to try it again. As for whether there is any spiritual significance behind some dreams I believe that is completely up to you and how you choose to perceive them, I recently had a lucid dream in which I saw my childhood dog and I asked him what he represented and he said "the mail" to which I went and checked the mailbox and found an envelope saying 'go back to Indonesia' which is where I had just been on holiday so I believe that was simply my conscious brain projecting my desires in a lucid dream but others with more serious responses I do think have spiritual significance and important messages that are supposed to be investigated by us in order to help our waking lives.
But like Dane said I think this is a great book and any lucid dreamer should read it.

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Summerlander
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Summerlander » 07 Jul 2016 12:05

I read the book four years ago. I believe Robert Waggoner is being honest about his experiences but perhaps misinterpreting them in places.

The awareness behind the dream is clearly the subconscious mind, so he's not entirely wrong there. Split-brain patients' right-brain hemispheres (the more holistic, imaginative side) have exhibited a higher degree of awareness than a toddler. Stephen LaBerge hit the nail on the head when he said that lucid dreaming aids self-integration.

When Waggoner talks about the oneness of all things I believe he's referring to the undivided awareness, or pure consciousness (before the self fiction), that we all share. We are all the same in the sense that we are sentient. I think the book lends credit to the existential position advocated by Jean-Paul Sartre, who said: 'Existence precedes essence.'

It is definitely a good book even if the New Age language puts me off in certain places. I also wouldn't say that the ultimate nature of reality is divine. I'd just say it's a canvas for ostensibly unlimited potential. Nothing more.

I had a particular lucid dream around the time when I was reading Waggoner's book where I attempted to communicate with the 'awareness behind the dream'---however, through a shape-shifting character who threw me in a river. It led me to an underwater tunnel which invited me to move towards a peaceful light. The lucid dream had a 'spiritual' feel to it. I'd definitely encourage people to experiment with it. I drew a picture about it:

Shapeshifter and the Water Tunnel:
Image

I think it expresses my existential attitude before a perceived meaningless world.
"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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Dane
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Dane » 07 Jul 2016 14:24

But is dreaming not a biological function ?
Which functions regardless of your religious explanations, or am i still missing the point ?
I returned from the abyss, as a married man. :D

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Summerlander
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Summerlander » 07 Jul 2016 15:00

I agree with you, Dane. Regardless of religious interpretation---which is notoriously based on none other than the musings of ancient superstitious folk and their scriptures, not fact---there is a natural mechanism behind the dream phenomenon.

There are actually some passages in the Bible which seem to describe sleep states where vibrations are perceived right before subjects hear the voice of God or are visited by angels. If dreams are, in part, the source of divine revelation, then I would question the purported authenticity of religion as a whole. Scripture is merely the interpretation of perfectly natural experiences whereby beliefs and fantasies are phenomenally expressed.

Michael Raduga conducted some experiments where participants were required to lucid dream (enter the phase state) and seek out angels; I took part in the experiment and encountered a hooded being I had lucid dreamed about years prior to it, but this time he had wings. The result was that people, in general, really did experience beings of a seemingly divine nature. I'll post the relevant links here and some pictures of hooded and veiled figures that I saw in lucid dreams even though I'm an atheist ...

Veiled Women:
Image

Hooded Figure:
Image

As you can see, the strange figures were encountered in a dark void environment.

Links:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2078293/Visions-angels-Bible-lucid-dreams-claims-new-sleep-study-15-studied-angels.html

www.obe4u/application_of_lucid_dreaming_and_obe/the-phase-and-god/

Here's my 'Hooded Angel' experience:

'28/11/2011:

'I went to bed around midnight feeling achy and exhausted from having the flu. Once I eventually managed to fall asleep, a dream where I was working in a huge hotel/boutique developed. Me and Amin, a work colleague of mine in waking life, seemed to be the only people running the business and this parallels the fact that, lately, the two of us have been the main agents running our bookmaker shop. I would also like to add that, after having introduced the phase-inducing techniques to Amin, he was able to have an OBE and fly to India, his homeland, where he met a wise guru.

'I think it’s worth mentioning our recent discussion about the phase state (lucid dreaming/astral projection/OBE/whatever other names it goes by) as this could have unconsciously contributed to my upcoming lucidity---especially when I have not been performing reality checks in the waking state, lately, and only have my strong desire to enter the phase state to account for that. In the dream state, it seemed pretty acceptable that working in a hotel/boutique was my real job as I mindlessly sorted through the clothes and felt like I knew what I was doing. An aristocrat walks in and shows interest in renting one of our luxurious rooms. Amin excitedly gives him a tour of the place and I accompany them.

'We walk up a staircase and I notice that the third floor is labelled with a plaque that reads “Tricast Floor” and its best room is called “The Trifecta”. To anyone who has ever placed a bet at the bookies, or played Race Night, such names will be familiar. While Amin conversed with our client and we moved to the “Fourfold” floor, I started to wonder why the floor and room names did not sit well. Amin’s voice was beginning to irk me as I felt that it distracted me from realising something important.

'I scanned the vivid environment and delighted in absorbing the intricate beauty of geometric shapes on walls and colourful patterned carpets. Because of these geometric designs, the corridors we went through were somewhat subliminal and got me thinking. I wondered why I hadn’t noticed such features about the hotel before. My ignorance about the nature of my surroundings was on the verge of dissipating.

'In the next corridor, bunches of roses protruded from walls and hung from the ceiling. Curiously, no doors were in sight and made the exquisite decoration seem oddly undisturbed. I thought to myself that what I was observing, which I took to be real, could inspire an intriguing ambient setup for the next time I had a lucid dream. That’s when it dawned on me to ask myself if I was dreaming. Bam! Lucidity! I glided swiftly through the corridor and could hear Amin’s voice fading. Instead of turning left into another corridor, I chuckled to myself and swerved right into a section of the wall which gave way by opening inwards like it had been a camouflaged door to a secret passageway all along.

'Mindfully in the phase state now, I excitedly rubbed my palms together and took to exploring the passageway riddled with more geometric designs. In this state of full consciousness, I possessed my waking life memory and was now aware that what had ensued before had been a sham. I did not work in a hotel/boutique, the floors and rooms were ridiculously named after types of bets and other entertainment provided by the gambling industry, and I couldn’t even remember how I had got there in the first place.

'Now, lucidity enabled me to know that I was physically lying in bed despite my senses telling me I was somewhere else. I pushed another section of the wall in the passageway when I heard Amin’s voice and the sound of footsteps approaching. I found another passageway that displayed another convoluted design and glided towards a doorway leading to a leisure area with a swimming pool. No matter how fast I went and how much distance I gained from the approaching men, Amin’s voice and footsteps grew louder and he was now calling me. I didn’t want to become involved in another dream plot so I dived in the pool and swam to the bottom. As I did so, I heard Amin remark to his company, "He jumped in!" I went through the floor and entered a dark void.

'I was glad to be rid of the ambient setup that contained Amin because I had other plans on my mind. This was the perfect lucid dreaming opportunity to carry out an experiment assigned to me by Michael Raduga. It involves trying to summon or finding an angel and then eating in the lucid dream world. This experiment is inspired by the possibility that visions and encounters with divine beings described in ancient texts may be the product of altered states of consciousness. Prior to going to bed, I had imagined that if I was successful in inducing the phase state, a genderless angel with long and wavy hair, like the ones seen in Renaissance art, would be waiting for me. But what I got was clearly not what I expected when I summoned my imagined celestial friend. I called out, “Angel…angel of mine, come to me!” and an emergent spec of light in the distance gradually revealed more detail as it grew and lent the illusion of a translucent object approaching.

'As it got closer, it got dimmer, more ghostly and finally stopped short of coming any closer than a perceived distance of five yards. As I rubbed my hands (to maintain the vivid illusion) and gazed at what was before me, the realisation that I had encountered that form three years ago---in the same state of consciousness---suddenly hit me. My angel was a hooded figure with wings (the only thing that was different from three years ago) sprouting from its back. I asked the hooded angel who he was but there was no reply. The silence was eerie and his authoritative stance, with folded arms and an inflated chest, conveyed a certain degree of impatience. Not wasting any time, I requested to be fed and decided not to specify any type of food.

'The angel’s body language was still uncompromising but he proceeded to pull out diminutive bunches of bananas from under his robe and hurl them my way. The bananas displayed a tenuous colouring and were somehow partially lit in the dark spatiality where the encounter took place. I caught every single bunch with ease and enjoyed eating the bananas without having to peel their skin. They were deliciously sweet and fresh and met my expectations of what good bananas should taste like.

'I thanked the hooded angel, who incessantly threw his immaculate fruit at me, and returned to wakefulness with a sense of exultation and a head that buzzed with electrical activity. I felt exhilarated, refreshed, and my muscles no longer ached. My impression was that the lucid dream had revitalised me and I thank my apocryphal angel for his blessing. Even breakfast tasted better!'


The phase state = a hybrid brain state compounding waking consciousness and dreaming---characterised by around 40 Hz of brainwave activity (Gamma). Experiences in this state are often referred to as 'lucid dreaming', 'astral projection', 'out-of-body experiences', 'spirit travel', 'sleep paralysis hallucinations' etc.
"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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Pilgrim
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Pilgrim » 07 Jul 2016 21:27

Dane wrote:But is dreaming not a biological function ?
Which functions regardless of your religious explanations, or am i still missing the point ?

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Pilgrim
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Pilgrim » 07 Jul 2016 21:46

For certain perspectives, dreaming is only biological. Waggoner sets forth a path for spiritual success, whereby the reader can gain supernatural powers--powers to predict the future (and perhaps win a lottery); powers to know absolute truth; powers to communicate to mutual dreamers; etc. I just feel that his emphasis and approach is predominatly a spiritual view. I think most people will like his perspective because it is nice to have super powers.

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Pilgrim
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Re: Opinions on Waggoner's Gateway to Inner Self

Postby Pilgrim » 07 Jul 2016 22:57

Nice art, Summerlander! Have you ever made money with this skill?


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