I love it when you talk about the Wind in the Willows, Victor.Yes, as we fall asleep or come awake, we pass through the hypnogogic state or the hypnogogic trance.
The hypnogogic trance is one trance of many.
A trance is characterised by the turning off of some cognitive faculties and the turning on of some creative faculties.
The type of trance is determined by which cognitive faculties we turn off of which creative faculties we turn on.
We can learn which type trance to enter and leave, but it takes practice.
I leant how to safely enter a leave a particular trance by attending a class by a Sports' Psychologist.
The purpose of the trance we were taught was to increase our athletic performance, and various trances can be designed for various purposes.
At the moment I am no longer interested in increasing my athletic performance, rather I am interested in turning off some of my cognitive faculties in order to think in images. In other words, I am interested in imagistic poetry.
When some don't like what I say, or are disturbed by what I say, I am regularly accused of being on pot. But I don't take pot or any other mind altering drugs. I simply enter an imagistic trance.
Of course in my narcissistic way I hope to elicit replies in kind. In other words I hope to receive replies couched in images. But of course I tend to get replies in cognitive logic and cognitive analysis and cognitive evaluation.
And alas for my poor ego, the evaluations tend to be negative and shade into personal attacks.
This is natural as we all fear the unknown and for most of us trance is unknown territory.
Sometimes when I am out in the Bush I will start to fall into an involuntary trance and the first thing I feel is fear. This is natural for as I fall into an involuntary trance, my cognitive faculties start to fall asleep. And as some of my cognitive faculties start to disappear, I am more vulnerable. But as I fall through this rather sharp moment of fear, I leave the fear behind and the beauty of the Bush rushes in upon me.
In particular the cognitive faculty of knowing what is coming next disappears, and everything comes as a surprise. And the surprise is one moment of beauty after another.
If I try to stay in one moment of beauty without surrendering to the next, the beauty trance tends to disappear and I am left somewhat wistful trying to remember the beauty in the same way we try to remember a dream.
This is beautifully expressed by Kenneth Grahame in, "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn", which you can read by clicking on - http://www.online-literature.com/grahame/windwillows/7/
And note that each of us hears the Piper at dawn and dusk as we wake or fall asleep and pass through the hypnogogic trance.
We are piped awake and we are piped asleep and all we can remember is the wind in the willows.