A few months ago I heard about lucid dreaming and began trying to experience some myself. For those of you who don't know, lucid dreaming is being aware of the fact that you're asleep and dreaming while still in the dream. Because dreams are just projections of your imagination, if you are aware that you're dreaming, you should in theory have the ability to control the dream. Just last night I experienced a lucid dream for the very first time. It was by far one of the coolest things I've recently experienced.
I woke up for school, heard that it was a snow day then went back to bed. Asleep, I dreamt that I was in school, sitting at a desk taking a test. Somehow I remembered that it was a snow day and made the connection that I was dreaming. Excited, I burst out of my chair and screamed "I'M DREAMING!!!" Everything became blurry and started to spin. Not wanting to waste the experience I somehow managed to calm myself and stabilize the dream. The rest of the dream is spotty, but I do remember being attacked by some people in my school. I looked at my hand and imagined a gun, but when I went to shoot it I thought to myself "Do I need bullets too?" Sure enough, the gun was empty. I then said to myself "I have a gun with bullets" and tried again. This time the gun recoiled and started dropping my aggressors. I also remember later in the dream attempting to acquire an RPG to take down some really weird looking airplanes, but I couldn't get that. Also, at one point I remember getting a little freaked out because I didn't know how to wake up, and I felt trapped, but the feeling didn't last long.
Has anyone else experienced anything like this? This has rekindled my interest and I definitely want to keep trying for more.
Never had "control" of dream but I often either remember my dreams very clearly or (less often) figure out I'm dreaming and immediately wake up. I usually remember those dreams too.
EDIT: Sounds really cool though!
I've had several.
I've never had a sleep study to prove it (where's the time?), but my doctors all believe i'm slightly narcoleptic. So my stages of sleep are a little bit different from the average person. Typically when a dream begins to get lucid for me I end up waking up shortly after, so the experience is short-lived. But really cool nonetheless.
Once a few months ago in my Linear Algebra lecture I was taking notes (extremely tired at that time - part of narcolepsy is excessive daytime sleepiness). At one moment I was looking at my professor and writing notes and the next I was in some sort of waking dream. The classroom disappeared and I was in a field of sorts. My math notebook was in my hand and all of my notes were on it and instead of finishing the current sentence I was on i instinctively started writing about what I was seeing instead of math notes. About a minute later I sharply snapped back into reality and was really shocked at what just happened. It kind of felt like I was thrown back into reality. It was sharp and unexpected and it took me a few minutes to shake it off.
Sure enough I actually wrote on my notebook what I had wrote on it in my dream (or hallucination..?). I still have that page of notes to remind me that that actually happened. That event marks the current peak of my alleged disorder, and was way cooler than any drug I've ever taken.
Apparently people who play video games and have sleep disorders tend to get them more frequently. I used to be both and I had a lot of lucid dreams (probably more than once per month) and as a child I thought it was normal; but I'm dealing with my insomnia reasonably well these days, and incidentally haven't had a lucid dream in a while.
I have managed to start one, twice... though usually it is in the process of waking up that I begin it, thus making it end quickly. Now, I did once have a dream that was of me trying not to fall asleep, despite being heavily urged to do so by my own subconsciousness. Managed to stay awake, and was glad that I was able to... until I looked at the completely blank clock of mine. I then woke, disappointed.
Short of developing sleep disorders, are there are any other ways of inducing lucid dreams?
I think the most well known way is to find a task that you can do at any time of day. Looking at your hands is a common example. When you are awake, get in the habit of looking at your hands and asking yourself whether they look normal and if you are awake. The idea is that once you get in this habit, you might to it unconsiously in a dream. You will probably be able to realize that you are dreaming.
Its tough to keep yourself asleep when you notice you are asleep, at least, it takes practice.
Another method is to try to be aware of the fact that you are falling asleep. I've never got this one to work for lucid dreaming though. Actually, Ive never been able to do it at all.
I think the most well known way is to find a task that you can do at any time of day. Looking at your hands is a common example. When you are awake, get in the habit of looking at your hands and asking yourself whether they look normal and if you are awake.
On this subject, I find that looking at a digital clock works best. Digital clocks just look unreadable in dreams. Another common one is flipping light switches to see if it does anything.
In my dreams it feels like real life... None of these things actually work, but sometimes I just notice small changes that happened recently to my life and if they're not inside my dream than I instantly realize I'm dreaming. I don't have any sort of problem staying asleep when I'm lucid dreaming, but I do have a problem trying to wake up.
I had a lucid dream only once because whenever I realize I'm dreaming, I wake up. And I had experienced sleep paralysis twice, which is even cooler. It lasted only about ten seconds but inability to move and presence of someone in the room scared the sh** out of me.
I had experienced sleep paralysis twice, which is even cooler
Another aspect of narcolepsy is recurring sleep paralysis. I've experienced it 27 times in the past year (yeah, I keep count). Mine lasted anywhere from 30 seconds to 15 minutes, usually accompanied by visual and auditory hallucinations. Often when I woke up in that state I would be able to see my closet door, which would sometimes, and abruptly, dissolve into static, like television static. I'd hear the noise too. And sometimes I would see a humanoid figure lurking on the side or a terrifying face in the static. While they were cool experiences, they're never enjoyable for me. The first time it occurred it lasted about 15 minutes while I was trying to scream at the top of my lungs and break free. Those were some of the most utterly terrifying moments of my life. That's actually why I went to go see a doctor in the first place.
It occurs less now - hasn't happened in about 6 months. I find that it happens more when I'm consumed in video games constantly, which hasn't been the case since last August, so yeah. Sometimes I feel like my heads all messed up.
A lot of those dreams do sound very game oriented.
It's been years since I had a lucid dream, but my favourite, and one that I repeated multiple times was the flight dream, but I stopped trying for that after I started remembering the end of the dream where I find that I've now lost control and generally fall violently.