Lucid dreams, a side effect of meditation.

Frequent meditation over a long period of time has many positive benefits. Reductions in stress, anxiety and depression to name a few. Meditation is the formal practice of mindfulness, mindfulness is the act of paying attention to what’s happening while it’s happening, in a sense to ” take a step back” and view what’s happening objectively.

The opposite of mindfulness is mindlessness and especially in this day and age, we are becoming really good at being mindless, walking around on autopilot, thinking we are awake but really sleep walking through life.

Lucid dreaming, for anyone not familiar with the phrase, is the ability to, or the sudden realisation that, while in the midst of a dream you know you are dreaming, when this realisation occurs it’s an amazing feeling, what you took to be real is realised just to be a projection of your own mind, you are in a sense ” enlightened” in the dream state, knowing for certain that everything and everyone you encounter is a part of your own mind, at which point you can start altering the dream at your desire, this too takes practice though.

What we practice often, good or bad we become really good at. It is said that all young children are natural lucid dreamers, that it is our default state of dreaming but we eventually lose the ability as we get older and as the world conditions us to see it a certain way.

As we age and are taught how to see the world, we take the ideas and concepts taught to us as reality, as something that is really real, we then start seeing life through our conditioning, we take everything that is presented to us as real, forgetting it’s all just ideas and concepts.

As we start to sleep walk through life, taking the world to be solid and real, we start getting good at what we practice. How we view and interact with daily life spills over into the dream state, in the midst of a dream we take it to be real and not question anything because that’s what we practice in daily life.

So how does meditation and mindfulness help us have more lucid dreams? Meditation and mindfulness is the act of being in reality, of experiencing reality how it is not how we think it is. When we truly start paying attention more and more to what’s happening in the present moment, when we start making a habit of becoming lucid to life, that habit starts creeping into our dream state and we become lucid in our dreams.

Like anything in life it takes time though and we aren’t going to lucid dream every night, the frequency of lucid dreams will go up though when we start practicing these daytime practices of meditation and mindfulness. The spiritual path is about waking up, it’s about waking up to life, to seeing reality as it is not how we think it is, when we start waking up to life we start waking up in our dreams too and when that happens it opens up a whole new world to us.

There are many more daytime practices that can assist in having more lucid dreams but I’ll leave it at that for now. Just realise though that a daily meditation and mindfulness practice will only help not hurt the process. I have much more to write on the subject but until then, thanks for reading and have a great day.

Simon Coleman.

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