Wednesday, May 27, 2015

False Awakenings

I believe this morning I was a little frustrated with this new onset of repetitive false awakenings, but now thinking of it I am very amused. I have recently come across a lot of false awakening topics across the internet and sure I have experienced some pretty weird false awakenings, but this was the first time it was a string of them in one morning.

A False Awakening is simply when we think we have woken up in reality but find out it's another dream. A dream inside of a dream if you will. 'Insert Inception Reference'...same concept. It's thought that false awakenings are common in lucid dreamers or if you have a very big day ahead of you. Oddly enough for me both factors were the case in last night's episodes.

In the past month on more than one occasion I found myself falling asleep in waking life and waking up in my bed on the other side. This was done when I had almost remained consciously aware while falling asleep but not 100% and it took me a couple of minutes after "waking up" in my dream to realize I was dreaming and became lucid.

Last night it began by one lucid dream and false awakening. When I woke up for real and fell back asleep, I was constantly waking up and getting a little bit further just to wake up in the dream again, over and over and over. I find it so amusing because I remember coming across people online who have claimed to be in ten dreams deep before. I just assumed "Well, that just doesn't happen to me." WRONG, haha, I'm no different from anyone else, eh?

One thing I do notice though, when I have lucid dreams in these situations where false awakening usually occur, I usually have a difficult time staying aware and being able to have control. Sometimes I just honestly think my subconscious feels it needs to exert itself over me.

In my experience, it seems to me that false awakenings occur after we perform reality checks on a regular basis. Once we have gotten a pretty good hold on what triggers us to become lucid, it's like our subconscious is throwing a curve ball at us by handing us these false awakenings. Why? Probably because one of our minds main purposes is to "ground" us in to this reality otherwise we just exist in everything all at once (but that's just my opinion).


Sleep Cycle:
-Bed @ 10:00 pm
-Woke @ 4:15 am, could not recall my dream well and stayed awake for a good hour before falling asleep.
-Woke on and off until 10 am, with repetitive lucid dreams and false awakenings

Method: DILD (Dream Initiated Lucid Dream)

Location: Antique hotel

Characters: Spouse, unknown characters

Intent: "Show me what I need to know"

-Inability to hold onto awareness/kept awakening
-False Awakening
-Inability to leave story line

"I kept waking in a very old hotel or apartment building. It was fairly dark as it was early morning
and I was just getting out of bed, my spouse next to me. It would only take me a minute or two to realize I was dreaming. After the first time I realized this,
 I continued to do things like run around outside
or climb through an antique mirror in the hallway to travel to another dimension. 
The first time  was so very difficult to keep awareness, 
I was confronted with the test of sexual urges that I walked away from,
 but when I walked away I woke up next to my spouse. After being intimate I woke up for real.
 I fell back asleep a couple of minutes later and the same thing kept reoccurring. 
As soon as I would get a little bit far with my explorations 
I would wake up again in the dream all over again.
The craziest thing was, at some points I was both conscious
in the waking world and the dream. I could vaguely feel out what
 the boys were doing while getting ready while still holding onto the dream." 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

What does it mean to be awake?

My college blogging project on lucid dreaming is coming to a close. However, I fully intend for the blog to live on. I owe it to this project to have pulled me out out of a very long dry dream spell. There are reasons that I chose to forget about these wonderful past experiences and focus on waking life, mainly lack of time and stress of daily obligations, but I felt that it was time to start dreaming again.

Classmates of mine were curious to how I am effected in waking life by these experiences. Overall the side effects of dreaming are more positive than negative, though it's not that black and white.

Having these intense non-physical experiences do take up a lot of my physical time and mind during waking life. I take time to write down snippets of dreams in the middle of the night so I can hold onto the memory. Upon awakening, or whenever I get the chance, I write detailed versions down in my dream journal. This might now seem like a tremendous amount of time but it is in my situation when I'm headed out the door at 4:30 in the morning.

My nightly experiences are usually on my mind through out the day, but I am often very engaged with work that this does not distract me and take away attention when attention is crucial. I have been known to dwell on dream characters just like many others do, and people who have fallen fond of characters in fictional books or movies to have it come to an end know the heartbreak that comes with it. So yes, sometimes these dreams can put me in a very reminiscent state, because it's more than just a book.

There is also the typical feeling lucid dreamers have of questioning reality. What is reality? When I start intending to remember my dreams again the veil of waking and dream life become a lot thinner and life seems a lot more subjective. This feeling can sometimes be a curse. We train our self to question reality every day in order to have lucid dreams so it makes sense that dreamers sometimes have a hard time distinguishing in between both worlds.  

I believe there can be a balance in between these two lives. It's not always easy to separate or label our experiences real or not real but as long as we remind ourselves to live in the moment and enjoy life as it comes I think we'll be okay. (I know, a lot easier said than done). I have come across other dream travelers who don't want anything to do with waking life. That's really a shame. I enjoy my time in waking life and wouldn't change it for the world. It's all connected somehow, that much I believe. We can learn things and grow in ways unimaginable from both worlds. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Day 23 & Experiment on Galantamine

I have briefly noted in previous posts that I have taken Galantamine in the middle of the night and have given links to galantamine resources. My intention was to experiment with this supplement for a few days and record the outcomes. Now I will stop to give you the details why I would so such a thing.

Galantamine is used as a minor treatment to Alzheimer or memory impairments. It is obtained from the flowers of such plants as spider lily or snowdrop. People have used galantamine to increase their odds of lucid dreaming. Many lucid dreams suggest taking a recommended amount of 4 - 8 mg after about five hours of deep sleep and using a lucid induction method to increase your lucid chances. I believe the reason for this is that Galantamine has a short shelf life and yours odds will increase by taking closer to your REM cycle. It's also recommend that you space days out between uses to not build up resistance.

Though this supplement is approved by the FDA, caution is advised. It has been reported taking the supplement on a daily basis for an extended period of time will effect brain chemistry and might give some gastro-intestinal problems. For some light sleepers it can interfere with a restful nights sleep.

I have never taken Galantamine prior to this three non consecutive day experiment so have never had the opportunity to build up a resistance

Day 1 of my Galantamine experiment: 

Date: May 13, 2015

Dosage: 4 mg

Time Taken: 2 am (5 hours after sleeping)

Beginning Feelings: Surge of brain activity. Difficulty falling into a deep sleep.

Result: Enhanced dream recall. Lucid Dream at 7 am.

   Induction Technique: WILD


Day 2

Date: May 16, 2015

Dosage: 4 mg

Time Taken: 1-2 am (3 hours of sleep)

Beginning Feelings: None

Result: Enhanced dream recall but "overloaded" with memory. I believe I was completely exhausted. However, I did wake up feeling very refreshed and clear minded like I actually had a good night's sleep for once.  


Day 3

Date: May 17, 2015

Dosage: 8 mg

Time Taken: 4 am (five hours of sleep)

Beginning Feelings: None

Result: Night full of dream recall. Lucid Dream around 7-8 am. 
    Induction Technique: Wake Induced Lucid Dream (WILD)

"It was if I fell asleep in waking life and woke up in a mirrored dream realm.
I was in my bed in my apartment but of course everything looked slightly different. 
Immediately I jumped out of bed, opened front door, ready to snoop around in my 
bitchy neighbor's apartments. Suddenly I jolted back into my body and woke up."


Day 4 

Date: Present Day-May 20, 2015 Day 23 of Lucid Project

Dosage: 8 mg 

Time Taken: 4 am (6 hours of sleep)

Beginning Feelings: Increased brain activity. I tossed and turned on the brink of awake and dreams for awhile. 

Result: Enhanced ream recall and multiple lucid experiences early morning. Even though I had tossed and turned quite some time I woke up feeling completely rested and awake. 

    Induction Technique: Dream Induced Lucid Dream (DILD)

    Location: A cobble stone village called "Nope"

    Intent: Visit Germany

Monday, May 18, 2015

Awareness Techniques

Today marks 21 days since I have started this project. I have recorded 20/21 days of dreams with a handful of lucid experiences. This is quite a progress for me considering the five months prior I recorded only 18 nights of dreams. It proves to me that the power of intent: a combination of intending to dream, intending to become lucid, and intending to remember my dreams, is probably the most important technique of them all.

One of the most common failures I am constantly hearing about from those beginning to practice lucid dreaming is "I can't open my eyes" or "I have no vision, everything is black". This is such a regular occurrence that is linked to your awareness abilities. Beginners will encounter obstacles that enable them from having anything but a very short lucid experience that usually fades into a blurry memory upon waking up.

So say you follow all of the initial techniques to having a lucid dream...
-Imagine yourself having plenty of dreams.
-See yourself waking up and recording your experience.
-Record your dreams every day. Even if you do not remember any, still write that you had no success!
- Practice Reality Checks and Affirmations.

...and success! Not only has your dream recall shot up but you start to become lucid! Now how do you overcome the common problems of losing vision and not being able to hold onto the experience for more than a moments time?

1. Intent: 

Prior to going to sleep, have a clearly defined intent or action of what you will do when lucidity hits. Imagine yourself following through with this task. Especially early on in your practice, it's important to make these simple and easy to remember. Intending to fly, travel to a specific place, etc. etc. In my personal experience, acting mischievously with your new found freedom will not aid you to progress but end up holding you back from having a meaningful or profound experience. 

2. Anchor:

You must keep your awareness from slipping away from the experience by drawing your attention to detail in your lucid dream. Pick objects up. Feel things...taste them! When I fall victim of losing vision I proclaim loudly "clarity now" or rub my hands together.

3. Keep It Short: 

I understand that for many beginners the length of their experience will be chosen for them. You will at first have a hard time keeping the experience rolling after becoming lucid. It's also important to remember the shorter your experience the more likely you remember it in detail. You might have to show some restraint in order for the memory to not fade. Wake up and write the experience down immediately. 

Keep in mind that I am not expert, but I am not a beginner either. These our techniques that I have been using years prior that our handed down from many other night travelers. I continue to apply these to my own experiences and have had positive results. 

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Recurring Dream Locations

The reoccurring places and scenarios in my dreams have been on my mind often since starting this project. It seems that more often than not, my dreams involve fictional places I know I have been before while dreaming or having an OBE. After a night's sleep where dream recall was successful, I am left to ponder an explanation.

Whether or not any of us will uncover the truths of our dreams is unknown and my guess is that it will not be in this lifetime. Still, my curiosity has taken me to researching other people's experiences across the web. I now realize that I am not alone with this experience. The very odd thing is that many people seem to have the same locations as each other they visit in their dreams. Cobblestone villages, a mall, A market like city w/ connected segments, "Summerland"...

So here are some of my theories I have been questioning: 

1. Are our brains or subconscious creating these complete fictional places as a reflections of ourselves? I almost feel like it can depend on the dream. Sometimes these locations feel like pre-rendered constructs and not completely subjective to us. 

2. Remote Viewing? Are we tied to someone else in a mental frequency and seeing through their eyes? 

3. Past lives? For some the biggest validation of reincarnation is dreaming of themselves as another person in an unknown place. This answer seems too simple for me. I feel the answer is not so simple.

4. Another interesting theory I came across: What if dreams are like channels that we join, channels that we share with other dreamers or souls? 

5. I have come to believe that time is irrelevant as it is a man-made construct. What makes sense to me is that we co-exist in a number amount of universes or possibilities of time and space and that through our subconscious we can get glimpses of these other lives.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Day 15: Flying to Outer-space and reccurring scenarios

I would like to think this project has thus far been successful as I slowly regain the ability to dream recall. I want to say on average I have been remembering two dreams a night.

Day 15 marks the third lucid experience I can vividly recall. It also marks Day 1 of the Galantamine experiment and four recalls in one night.

Sleep Cycle:
-Bed @ 9:30 pm
-Woke @ 1:50 am, recalled and recorded a dream, and took 4 mg of Galantamine before falling back asleep.
-Woke @ 7:05 am and recorded another dream. I was astonished at how well of a sleep I had and how awake and clear minded I felt. I decided to go back to sleep with confidence I could obtain lucidity and leave my body like just as I had in last experience.

Method: WILD (Wake Induced Lucid Dream)

Location: Sandwich shop, Tunnel, Outer-space

Characters: Shop owner, Astronauts

Intent: Fly to outer-space

-Inability to hold onto awareness
-Misuse of power (Details are personal)

I was in a reoccurring dream location: a small cobblestone village. I have visited a sandwich shop in this town various times. Each time I have difficulty placing an order. Last time I only had a debit card and they only accepted cash. This time I could hardly read the menu because the words were disappearing. The shop owner was becoming irritated, unrightfully so. I told her she was acting like a bitch and I would take my business elsewhere. She immediately apologized.

"At that point I became lucid. Just like last time I woke myself in attempt to leave my body before fully awakening to be extremely aware. I don't recall much of this part. I then found myself flying through a tunnel of green and neon yellow colors swirling around.
This is the second experience I've had of flying through some sort of vortex of time and space. My intention was to arrive at a planet in outer-space. I called for someone to guide me through this tunnel. A hand (no body) reached out to me. I grabbed a hold of it until we reached the end of the tunnel. I was wearing a space suit and landed on a planet that looked similar to the moon, but I was not alone. A whole crew of astronauts were gathered around. I don't know where they were from. I interacted with them for a short time before waking up and ending the experience."

Monday, May 11, 2015

Lucid Sage

I wanted to dedicate this post to a fantastic blog I came across recently regarding lucid dreaming. There are some wonderful sites across the internet relating to this subject. However, I was about to give up on finding a blog that not only had useful content but was also up to date. Almost every blog I came across hadn't been updated in over two years, until I finally found Lucid Sage.

 Lucid Sage is more than just a blog documenting the writer's personal journey into the depths of their subconscious. The writer puts forth a good amount of effort to inform people of techniques, keep up on scientific research on sleep studies, and new lucid dreaming devices and supplements entering the market.

One of the most interesting aspects of the blog is the podcast. I admit that the blog posts read more like articles and are a couple of years old, but the podcast is still being updated regularly. There are 20 episodes total that range 30 minutes to an hour in length. They cover many lucid dreaming topics, including techniques, the writer's personal experiences, and many interviews. The most recent podcast is an interview with the creators of Anamnesis, a fictional mini web series I gave mention to a couple of posts ago.

I believe I will take something away from this blog as I dive deeper into the subject matter. There is also a sense of unity that this blog has fulfilled by making me feel connected to what's happening in the lucid dreaming community.
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