This post was inspired by conversations that I have had with a few forum members through PM's...one member in particular. I made this post because I believe that many of the people on this forum would be interested in and could benefit from honing this bizarre regularity.
I want to talk about lucid dreams in particular. If you do not know what a 'lucid dream' is, it is a dream in which you are aware that you are dreaming. Once you have come to this realization, the dreamscape is subject to your will. You can manipulate the scenario, changing it completely if you wish. When you become aware of the fact that what you experience is not real, you can truly appreciate your sensory awareness of what is false. If this is interesting to you, you will be glad to hear that this is a skill that can be learned. I am willing to coach you to the best of my ability.
Your mind is very much a separate entity from you. There are the portions of your mind that you think and percieve with, and then there is the rest. Most people forget their dreams every morning when they wake up. A lot of people think they "don't dream" because it is so infrequently that they would remember one. I will return to this shortly.
Your subconscious mind, whose sole purpose is really to "help you," whether by providing you with a physical reflex when it believes you are in danger or by allowing you to spontaneously remember something that may be of immediate use. You could know that you aren't in any real danger if your friend says he will punch very near your face, and even if his arm is measured out beforehand, it would still be difficult not to blink, because your unconscious mind, which is stupid by some standards, does its best to help, and it doesn't speak English.
After this point, I will be referring to the mind as an entity separate from your self.
There is a language that you and your mind both speak. It is emotion. Desire, pain, these are concepts that your mind understands very well. If you merely say the words aloud, "Wake me up before 9:00 tomorrow," your mind, which wants the best for you, will probably not wake you up. There was little emotion in your speech; your mind speaks emotion.
But, if you knew that you would be killed if you did not wake up before 9:00, I can guarantee that the emotional impact of this would be so strong that you would be woken up before that time. Obviously, you probably wouldn't be able to get to sleep, but it's only an example. You may forget your keys many times in many places. But those events are not followed by immediate, strong emotional impact. How many times will you forget not to touch fire? A phobia of dogs that developed after being attacked by a dog has a direct source. A part of you that you are not in control of is doing its best to protect you, and it uses emotions as guidelines.
That having been said, I will get back to those who believe they do not dream. If every night, before they went to bed, they meditated on their deep desire to have dreams. How unfair it is that others dream, and not they, how wonderful it would be to have dreams of their own, their mind would take notice of this, and it would serve them accordingly. If their desire was true and strong, I would imagine that even someone who had never remembered a dream in his life would remember one within a week. Your mind notes desire.
So, when you wake up everyday and make an effort to remember dreams, that is, desire to remember them, your mind makes note of this. So, if you do this every morning, your mind gains a little slot for remembering dreams; it begins to believe that dreams are important.
Acquiring that groove is the most crucial step to learning to dream lucidly. It is difficult for some and consumes much of their time. If you want to form this groove, I suggest starting a dream journal. Every morning, when you wake up, grab the pen and notebook conveniently placed on your nightstand and write down the dream you have just had. If you can't remember the dream, write down how you feel. If you remember the dream a little bit, but you can't remember the details, just write down the way it made you feel. Most of us have our first thirty seconds of awakening erased from our memory, so even though these tasks may seem impossible for you, as someone who rarely remembers dreams, I suggest that you put the notebook right by your bed tonight. If you reach for the notebook immediately after awakening, you may be surprised at what you are able to recall. This is the most important step, and I cannot emphasize it enough.
A dream is pleasant in the same way anything else that gives us pleasure is, namely, it allows favorable chemicals to be released within us. If you were to have a dream that you were falling, or about to fall off of a cliff, you would awaken with a start, and your fingertips would tingle. Somewhat similarly, when we dream that we eat an apple, we can taste the apple. We can even enjoy it. But why settle for an apple? Do you have a favorite meal?
Learning to have lucid dreams is like learning any other skill. Just as there are 'tricks' to help a child learn to tie his shoelaces, so are there with lucid dreaming, no magic involved.
I will follow up this post with further steps and instruction in the near future. If you keep a dream journal for a week or so, you should begin to notice changes in your dreams and the way they make you feel. Your mind will begin to recognize them as something which should be important to your consciousness.
The world is what is limiting. Dreams are what is free.
Thanks for taking the time to read this,
Edit: If you are willing to begin a dream journal, please say so...