Lucid Dreams


Looking closely at the dreaming process

Dreaming is something we all do, some of us get deep into figuring out what our dreams mean, while some of us just forget and never think of them ever again. It must feel like having an epiphany and then with a flash, it’s gone. Our dreams are our escape from reality, where we think of places we want to go, what we wish we had, and where we wish of becoming someone else. The realms of our dreams go beyond such thoughts.

We forget our dreams within ten minutes of waking up, and some dreams are so revelatory that we feel like going back and don’t really want to wake up from them. It’s been proven that our creativity multiplies in our dreams. So, why not go back and control them? Why not keep a track of what we’re subconsciously thinking of so much, in our sleep? Wouldn’t that really be helpful in attaining some peace of mind? Or do it just for the fun of it?

Lucid Dreams are those where the person is aware that he or she is dreaming. Now, two situations arise- One where the dreamer is in control of the dream, realizes it’s a dream and retains control of the dream, and two, where the person wakes up (termed as waking state), and falls back into the dreaming state. Now, in the latter state, when you wake up, you may sometimes try to go back and fail in doing so. It doesn’t always work like that.

Firstly, you’ll need to keep a dream journal, and write, or draw about what you’d like to dream about. Usually, it takes half an hour for one to fall asleep, so during that time, focus on what you’d like to dream about. The key thing here is to not watch any movies or TV shows before sleeping; otherwise you’ll end up dreaming about something similar.

Then when you do wake up, make sure to write down whatever you can remember about the dream in the journal (or just record it), or you will forget it. You could also set alarms in the morning at one hour intervals, so that when you do wake up in between, you can quickly remember the dream and go back in, knowing it’s a dream and knowingly controlling it. If random thoughts pop up when you are trying to fall asleep, repeat the imagining part, and try again. Don’t worry if you think it’s taking a long time. The longer it takes, the more likely it will “sink in”, and the more likely you will have a lucid dream. When you finally do realize that you’re dreaming, don’t get too excited or you might accidentally wake up. Same thing goes for the next day- read one of your previous dreams and think about them before you sleep and soon you’ll be back where you wanted to be.

In some dreams where the dreamer is lucid and is aware that he could exercise control, he chooses simply to observe. Since negative emotions are more common than positive ones in dreams (especially anxiety), with lucid dreams, we can understand and realize the cause of such emotions. Even when it comes to nightmares, we can fight back and rid ourselves of such thoughts by going back and controlling them.

Imagine having a night where you move from one dream to another, conquering each one and then writing all of it down, to look back on some day with joy. Who wouldn’t want that? This isn’t Christopher Nolan level, but it’s still something worth looking into.

Akhil Thakur

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