How To Have A Lucid Dream
If you've ever been in the middle of a dream and then suddenly "woke up" within your dream and realized you were still actually sleeping on the physical plane, you've had a Lucid Dream. And that would be most of you, by the way -- nearly everyone has experienced this at least once. And, whether you have or have not, you can begin to do so if you put a little effort into it. Why would you want to? Well, for starters, lucid dreaming tends to be pretty exciting. But the real reason you should consider it, is that a truly lucid dream can totally enlighten you, and assist you in making important life decisions.
What exactly IS a Lucid Dream?
Let's say you're sleeping and having a lovely little dream in which your favorite movie star is down on his knee proposing to you. Suddenly, in a moment of true awareness, you realize you're dreaming, and George Clooney is asking for your hand in marriage. Everything else in the dream stays "unaware" and you now realize you're able to control the dream, and everyone else in it.
Hey! I've been there! But... I always seem to *really* wake up 5 seconds later.
Yep, that's what happens to the average person. This is because they get so excited that they wind up returning to their waking life, on the physical plane. Anyone can learn to control and prolong a lucid dream -- but those who have already experienced this are particularly primed to do so. So if you're reading this, chances are this is a synchronicity for you, and you should start making more of an effort to Lucid Dream at will.
How do I intentionally wake myself up in my dream?
Well, to start, you need to have the idea in your subconscious. Let your inner self know that you want to experience a lucid dream. Remind yourself throughout the day that you intend to have a lucid dream that night. There are also many "tricks" used to wake oneself up in a dream. For me, I use the hands method: I look at my hands while I'm really awake, and ask myself if I'm dreaming. Do this enough times that it starts to become a habit, and eventually you will start doing it while you're dreaming, too. Only.. when you're dreaming, you'll realize that you *aren't* awake, and then you'll become lucid.
Another popular method is the hopping method -- instead of checking your hands, you would hop round a few times a day and ask yourself if you're awake. The reason for this, is that you tend to start flying in a Lucid Dream the second your feet leave the ground, and that would make you lucid. Personally, I felt checking my hands in public was less conspicuous than hopping about, but I'm sure both work just as well.
Ok, how do I STAY lucid once I'm aware of it?
This is the tricky part -- but it needn't be. The secret is viewing the experience as pragmatic rather than a party. That said, it's highly unlikely you'll be able to do that until you've done everything you want to do in a lucid dream. In other words, until the novelty wears off, you're probably not going to be able to sustain more than a few minutes of lucidity. And you may not want to view it pragmatically -- you may only be at a point in your consciousness where having fun with your lucidity is all you're meant to experience. When you're ready to start connecting with other forms of consciousness and source energy, you'll have more of a purpose when entering these dreams, and you'll be able to to control your emotions long enough to get the information intended for you.
Sounds awesome -- I'm going to do this every chance I get!
Be careful with Lucid Dreaming; it can be highly addictive and people can intentionally sleep their lives away just hoping for 5 seconds of lucidity. That is not the point of lucid dreaming, and it will not help your waking consciousness. By all means, enjoy it and have fun with it. But if you find yourself rushing home to take a nap, or staying in on a beautiful Saturday just so you can lucid dream, something is not right.
Keep a dream journal next to your bed and USE it. You will not understand how important this is until you start processing dream recall -- it's far more powerful when written down than it is reciting from memory.