The lucid dreams are taken when the person is dreaming is aware of this and can; therefore, operate at will the content of the dream. As if it were a movie, we would be the directors of our dream.
Characteristics of lucid dreams
The main characteristic of lucid dreams is our active role in them, and the only limit is our imagination. During a lucid dream, we can experience anything we are capable of coming up with: from flying to jumping in time to visiting any place in this world (or other worlds). Sounds fantastic, right? There are various degrees of control, as well as practice. And if we want to reach the highest levels, intentionality is essential, be convinced of it, and trust in the power of our mind, but it is not enough. That is why these types of dreams can occur spontaneously, but it does not happen very often. Normally, we are stimulated to experience a lucid dream.
How is a normal dream different from a lucid dream?
It is important to be clear about the differences between normal dreams and lucid dreams to clear up possible doubts about the latter. In essence, a lucid dream is distinguished from a normal dream in that:
—We only realize that we are asleep in a lucid dream. We are aware that we are dreaming and, therefore, that what we see is not real, but the product of our imagination.
—While during normal dreams, we are spectators of dream content, during lucid dreams, we are actors, and we can modify the setting.
—The ability to dream when we sleep is innate to the human being. However, having lucid dreams is more of a skill. And like all skills, it requires some training if we want to perfect it.
—Most dreams occur during the REM phase of sleep, but lucid dreams with a special reason. This kind of dream necessarily has to occur when we are in this phase because it involves the most brain activity.
Learning to dream lucidly: Methods and guidelines
Anyone can try to be the architect of their dreams, both those who have already dreamed lucidly and want to repeat and those who have never done. But the results may vary, not all attempts will bear the desired results because not all minds are equally suggestible, nor do all people have the same characteristics at the cognitive level. For example, having a sleep-related disorder decreases the chances of lucid dreaming. Many people have trouble falling asleep, do not rest properly, or sleep at the wrong time.
At this point and with everything mentioned above clear, we can learn to be lucid dreamers. The simplest procedure to follow to have a lucid dream consists of three steps:
1. Remember a dream. Researchers have shown that we dream every night, even if we don’t remember later. We must start working on the memory of our dreams to have a lucid dream. We write it down on paper or record it in audio; we will be preparing our minds so that it can later use that dream content as the basis of a lucid dream.
2. Perform reality tests. Being in a lucid dream means being aware that you are asleep. But how do we check our level of consciousness, we can do it through reality tests. Simple tests that it is advisable to make a habit until we can master the art of lucid dreaming. Some examples are:
– Gravity. Can you fly? Ask yourself if you can challenge Newton’s Law of Universal Gravitation.
– Time. Can you jump in time? Ask yourself if you are following a logical time sequence.
– Hands. Try to go through one of your hands with the other, can you do it?
– Reading. You are reading a text, if you look away for a few seconds and then return to the text, has anything changed?
– Mirror. Find your reflection; do you see something that does not match your image?
3. Project your lucid dream. We have already made sure that nothing we see is real because we are dreaming, what now? The last step has to do with managing lucid dreaming. It is easier if we have previously planned the dream that we would like to have, either writing it down or practicing exclusively with our imagination. Remember that the dreams that we have been accumulating in our memory can serve as a stage! And if we want to prolong lucid dreaming, we must remain in that state as long as possible.