An Introduction to the World of Lucid Dreaming
Ever asked yourself if you are dreaming whilst in a dream or had the realisation that you are able to control what happens next in your dream? If so, it is likely that you were experiencing a lucid dream. In this article we will provide an introduction to the world of lucid dreaming.
What is lucid dreaming?
The simplest way to explain lucid dreaming is when a person becomes aware that they are dreaming. Whilst some people believe it is when you control your dreams, this is not necessarily true, as you can still have a lucid dream without having any control over it. You may also be controlling a dream without realising it is a dream.
Lucid dreaming is something anyone can do. It is not difficult or dangerous. In fact, being able to dream lucidly is actually a sign of a healthy mind and conscious state.
The benefits of lucid dreaming
Whilst some people discount dreams as ‘just being a dream’ and believe they have no other purpose, we must ask ourselves why we spend a third of our lives doing something that has absolutely no substance. Could it be that our dreams are actually more significant to our lives than we realize ? Lucid dreaming enables us to become aware in our dreams and gain control over our own private universes. This has many benefits, including giving us a glimpse into possible alternative realities.
One of the main benefits of lucid dreaming is that it can be used to practice real life events and techniques. If there is something that you did not think you could do, why not try it out in your dream first? Or if there is a problem you feel you cannot resolve, why not act it out in your dream in order to find a solution? Lucid dreaming allows you to experiment with different behaviours and see how others respond to them.
Lucid dreaming also enables people to gain insights into issues that are affecting them. These may be issues that they are unable to put their finger on when they are awake. Gaining an insight to these issues is the first step to finding a resolution.
Understanding the difference between WILD and DILD
It is believed that there are two main routes into lucid dreaming; these are known as WILD and DILD. WILD stands for wake induced lucid dream. This is where we move directly from being awake into a dream state without any loss of awareness. Most people do not have any recollection of experiencing this form of lucid dreaming, though it often happens when people are taken ill.
DILD stands for dream induced lucid dream and is the more common of the two. Many people recollect experiencing dream induced lucid dreaming as it is when you question whether you are dreaming whilst in a dream. For example, you may notice that something is not quite right with your dream, like a room you know well looking different. Although some people ask themselves if they are dreaming, not all of them go onto make the connection, with many assuming that they are not.
Lucid dreaming techniques
There are many successful techniques that can be used to influence WILD and DILD including reality checks, all day awareness, immersion, memory exercises, mantras, meditation, hypnosis, deep relaxation and falling asleep exercises and lucid dream aids. Some techniques like reality checks and mantras are designed to intensify dream induced lucid dreaming, whereas others like meditation and deep relaxation are designed to encourage you to experience a wake induced lucid dream.
Lucid dreaming is something that anyone can do. Though it may be easier for some than others, like every other skill people can learn how to lucid dream. If you are interested in learning how to dream lucidly, it is highly recommended that you read up on some of the techniques mentioned in this article and have a go at practicing them during your waking hours.