How did experiments with lucid dreaming pan out?

by listic1 min read12th Nov 201611 comments


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I remember there was a group of enthusiasts here on Less Wrong who were interested in experimenting with lucid dreaming, including research on its impact on the quality of life. How did those experiments pan out?

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Failed for me. I never had a lucid dream but the technique of writing down your dreams right after you wake up caused me to wake up in the middle of the night more than I normally did so I stopped trying to have lucid dreams.

To clarify, do you think you woke up more or was it just more disruptive when you did because you'd reach for the dream journal?

It's my understanding we wake up multiple times through the night, but have no recollection of it because we go right back to sleep.

Good question. I'm not sure.

Had short LD today.

Found a way to have LD every time I want - but do not want them often - using galantamine megadosing of 16 mg (dangerous).

Created map of all known technics to have LDs (in Russian, not translated).

But still don't get any useful or positive result from LDs

try meditating. Widely reported as super effective and I can confirm.

Hello there. I am a lurker. To make an account for the sole purpose of momentarily commenting on one post is, highly abnormal for me. But I thought it might be beneficial for your inquiry. Some of us do lucid dream quite regularly. I am not aware of the statistics regarding such things and I wouldn't say I have the most pristine memory capabilities as compared to any other individual, but I do believe that I may be on one extreme of the spectrum.

I lucid dream practically every night and have done so for as long as I have been able to adequately self reflect on dreams. I suspect this is sometime around pre adolescence. I am able to recall in what I can only describe as a photographic manner, most all of my dreams to some degree, for at least the last couple of years. This is most likely I believe due to an aptitude to retain said information upon waking better than others. I say years, as while I don't recall every slice of every dream, accounting for every week and month etc. I do remember more so than not and this result has been consistent. Almost like recounting one's favorite movie scenes. I can recall floor plans, number of occupants, gender of company, distinguish real persons from projections (copies of real people vs npc's), and regularly experience a recurring degree of disembodiment and in a shifting first person to third person perspective.

My dreams usually encompass multiple and distinct parts and I find it very easy to pick up a dream where I leave off after momentarily waking. Also, I have found that the degree of realism doesn't seem to make a noticeable difference. Whether I'm at work or teleporting between solar systems, once aware, I am able to distinguish myself as an entity from my surroundings. Imagine the now meme ridden inception film. This is how it appears but to a slightly lesser extent. I know I am not experiencing real physics or time. I know that people in this space are not real persons though they may feel real under momentary scrutiny. This is a hard experience to conceptualize.

Worked very well for me. I do not wake up to write my dreams, if I wake up at all. When I wake up I try to sleep again to continue the dream, so I can find out what's the dream about actually. I consider lucid dreams like quests, I have to find out something unconsciously which I was failing to find consciously.

What matters the most during a lucid dream? It is how much one remembers conscious life while going unconscious.

I welcome questions.

Did you do anything special to have lucid dreams?

[-][anonymous]4y 0

huh, what happened to my post, just testing here....

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well, curious not a lot of replies, though I suppose with the nature of the site, most here wouldn't spend much time on something that is largely unprovable. Dreams being only as good as what you believe the dreamer is actually telling you about the dream.

Personally my dreams have always been an integral part of my life. I can remember my dreams from as early as I can remember anything. 3-4 yrs old. I cannot imagine living a life without dreaming and it seems so odd to me that almost everyone does.

When I have not had dreams for a time, I tend to freak out. I start wondering what I'm doing wrong in my life and how to correct the problem of missing out on my dreams. I use them to find answers, I use them to determine where I might need to go and what I should be looking for, and just so much. For me it's simply common sense to use your dreams, and I cannot imagine my life otherwise.

From the "rational" perspective I do wonder about those that discard their dreaming. For me it is a simple tool, one that I have used since I was a baby. Yet I know so many people that when I talk to them about dreams, their reply is, "I don't dream, haven't since I don't know how long". What I wonder is, when did they throw away their dreaming and why?

In talking to folks, most seem to remember dreams never made sense and seemed to be random and frivolous things, such as , "an man in old clothing staring at me", but it makes no sense, no context to them is apparent. Many of my dreams are just that as well, I wake up more with a "huh? what was that about" than an answer or any particular insight. I don't worry about it, I just move on, sometimes I'll see the same dream again and again, and it might start to make sense, or it might just be a fun dream, like watching a TV show and I go back to it again and again.

None the less, I have made some major life decisions based on my dreaming and I do not regret those decisions. I believe those decisions were good ones and I reflect back with a "whew" thank goodness I followed my dream. At the same time I have ignored some dreams, they simple seemed to be impractical and so I dismissed them as such.

One thing for sure, there is nothing practical, rational, measurable about dreaming, at least in my view. I could tell you my dreams but would you believe them, and what would you think of them? For one they don't apply to you, they apply to me, I am the one that understands them, and can put them into context. I suspect someone could give me guidance to some degree, but in the end, the interpretation is on me. I'm not a baby any more, I'm a retired old dude, and yes I will look forward to and hope I can I have good dream tonight.

Ah, but one point of dreams is gathering a question? It's not as simple as saying "I want to remember my dreams/have a lucid dream". My most successful dreaming has always been based on "a question". Should I continue to live here? Should I look for a new job? How might I best communicate with a person? If I can properly frame a question, I can also usually find the answer in a dream. I have met and known others that similarly apply their dreams to their lives, but I can count those folks on one hand.

This is not as easy as it sounds. I've tried this with "lotto" numbers and always come up blank. Damn, maybe tonight will be the night ;o).

One thing I do feel good about is, I am on track with my dreams. This is at least true within the context of how I have used my dreams in my life. Perhaps my life is going down a frivolous folly of time waisting fantasy, but that's okay, because I'm somewhat successful, retired, and having the time of my life. So you'd hard pressed to get me to change my mind on what I've practiced and applied with some degree of success.

I haven't had lucid dreams in a while. My first lucid dream was after I watched Waking Life for the first time, I went asleep wanting to have a lucid dream, and I did. A man in some old clothing stared at me in the dream, and I was like transported somehow into what seemed like my bed, but I knew I was dreaming and did some things like float around. Usually that's what I want to do when I realize I'm dreaming, try to float or go to specific places, but it's not that controllable, it's hard even to keep that consciousness and it's never longer than a couple of minutes or less. I do have some pretty weird dreams which I remember some bits afterwards, they seem to happen in some different forms of places I know, or sometimes places I've never seen before.