Electric Dreams

An Excerpt From The Lucid Dream Exchange
Lucy Gillis, Editor

LDE Quarterly Lucid Dreaming Challenge, September 2005

"Harry Potter and the Lucid Dream Exchange Challenge"
Trying out Spells from the Hogwarts Universe

Ed Kellogg

(Electric Dreams)  (Article Index)  (Search for Topic)  (View Article Options)

Kellogg, E.W. III Ph.D. (2005 December). LDE Quarterly Lucid Dreaming Challenge, September 2005: "Harry Potter and the Lucid Dream Exchange Challenge". Trying out Spells from the Hogwarts Universe. (An Excerpt From The Lucid Dream Exchange, Lucy Gillis, Editor.) Electric Dreams 12(12).

While the magic of Harry Potter is back on the movie screens and fresh in our minds, why not try some Hogwarts magic in your lucid dreams? Ed Kellogg presents some fun tasks to try in your next lucid dream.

LDE Quarterly Lucid Dreaming Challenge
September, 2005

by Ed Kellogg

((c)2005 E. W. Kellogg III, Ph.D.)

(This feature provides an unusual lucid dreaming task for LDE readers with each new issue. Participants agree to accept personal responsibility for any risks should they choose to undertake these tasks, which may possibly bring about mental, emotional, and even physical changes. We invite those of you who attempt these tasks to send your dream reports to LDE.)

"Harry Potter and the Lucid Dream Exchange Challenge"
Trying out Spells from the Hogwarts Universe

This issue's task honors the book series of J. K. Rowling, because it promotes a positive point of view about "magic" and about "psi," and has had an incredible world wide impact among the people who really matter - the children and young adults who will make up future generations.

J. K. Rowling's series of books (and the derivative movies) promote the following "heretical ideas" in children at the most impressionable ages, setting up a magical view of the world at deep levels:
  1. Muggles (read "skeptics" and "debunkers") do not believe in magic either because they can not do it, or because they hate and fear it.
  2. Wizards and witches (read "psychics" and "lucid dreamers" <g>) can do magic, but try not to do it or talk about it in front of muggles, to spare their feelings and to avoid societal upset.
  3. Even muggle parents can have wizards and witches as children, although of course, as muggles, they will not understand magic, and will explain away any evidence of magic when it occurs, out of ignorance and prejudice.
  4. In general, wizards and witches feel sorry for muggles, and find their disbelief in magic amusing. They do not take the viewpoints of muggles seriously.
  5. Muggles and wizards do not live in some other world, or in some fairytale, they live in today's contemporary society.
I find it hard to imagine a better set of underlying defensive beliefs for a developing child with psychic abilities. Granted, this set of beliefs may not last, but they can give many children an extra year or two of magical childhood before societal pressures mold them into at least a semblance of muggles. But underneath it all, even in the most repressed, in the depths of the unconscious, "Harry Potter" will live on. And that, to paraphrase Robert Frost, may make all the difference.

The Challenge

When you next gain full lucidity in a dream, try doing one of the following HP ("Harry Potter") spells:
  1. Wingardium Leviosah! (pronounced: win-GAR-dee-um lev-ee-OH-sah) In the books this spell levitates the object you point at while saying it.
  2. Lumos! (pronounced: LOO-mos) This spell causes a light to appear.
  3. Scourgify! (pronounced: SKUR-ji-fy) This cleaning spell makes messes disappear. And finally -
  4. Expecto Patronum! (pronounced: ex-PEK-toh pah-TRO-num) This advanced spell causes a guardian animal spirit to appear.
Clearly intone each syllable of the spell you've chosen, using the pronunciation provided above. (I suggest that you practice chanting the spell during the day before going to sleep.) Stay centered in the dream and focus your intent on tapping into and channeling your creative power. Repeat as necessary, deepening your intent and trying variations in your wand gestures as necessary.

Now if by some mischance you find yourself in a lucid dream without a wand handy, in my experience you can use your hand instead with good results. For this task, to minimize uncontrolled variables, I suggest that you use the hand gesture known as "sword fingers" in qigong. I spontaneously found myself using this gesture for focusing intent or for directing energy in many lucid dreams. Once I discovered the qigong connection, I often used this gesture intentionally. It has proven reliable for directing lucid dream healing and psychokinetic effects. (With regard to HP spells, for example I've tried "Wingardium Leviosah" for levitation in lucid dreams, using this hand gesture in place of wand waving, and it worked quite well.)

To make the sword fingers gesture, point with your dominant hand by extending the index and middle fingers. Curl the ring and pinky fingers against the palm, and place the thumb on top of them. Aside from pointing, you can use your hand to simulate wand movements (""Swish and flick, remember, swish and flick. And saying the magic words properly is very important too -" -- Professor Flitwick in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone) To get the feel of using this hand gesture, listen to classical music and do some imaginary conducting. <g>

After your dream, record your experiences, and describe in detail what you did (especially if it differs from what I've described above), and the context - the environment and situation - in which you tried a spell out. If the spell results in phenomena of some sort, describe what happened in your dream journal in as much detail as possible - color, shape, movement, texture, etc. Use illustrations if appropriate. Also, if you aimed the spell at a particular target (for example, a feather for levitation, or an infected cut for healing), describe the target's condition before, and after the spell. If you get a chance to try a spell more than once, note down both similarities and differences. And of course, should you succeed at trying out any HP spells (regardless of whether or not the spells "work!"), I'd very much appreciate it if you would send your
dream(s) to me (alef1@msn.com), or better yet, to the Lucid Dream Exchange!

(Interested in trying out more spells from the Hogwarts Universe? Visit The Harry Potter Lexicon online and go to their "The Encyclopedia of Spells" section at:

Why should "Harry Potter" spells work in lucid dreams?

I believe that "magical words" derive their power from at least two different sources.

First, the personal level, where magical words have effects through their subjective associations for the user. Effective Associations: 1. On the Thinking/Focus Level - clear meaning, with no contradictory or mundane associations (why many magical spells use words from dead or foreign languages.) 2. On the Emotional/Intent Level - positive affect associations, for example words intrinsically embedded in an emotionally positive context, for example mantras/godnames, found in religious texts, or taught in spiritual or magical traditions respected by the user. And alternatively, for those who love the books, spells taken from Tolkiens's Lord of the Rings or from the J. K. Rowling's 'Harry Potter' books might work as well or better than those taken from religious tracts or grimoires, as these words have a powerful emotional appeal. Finally, "secret", or little known, "magical words" can have an added power for the individual who uses them.

Second, the impersonal, archetypal, level. Some words may have an intrinsic power, that does not come from the user as such, but that the user only taps into. Magical words or phrases that resonate/effect the release of archetypal energies, or of energies stored in the collective unconscious. Two possible examples. First, mantras/godnames known and chanted with purposeful intent by generations of monks, nuns, yogis, and other mystics. Second, the Harry Potter spells - known and uncritically believed in by millions of children.

This quarter's LDE challenge seems a kind of dream experiment, to look at the effects of Harry Potter spells when tried by different lucid dreamers from different backgrounds. Will the spells used in dreams generate effects with the kind of commonalties one might expect in a consensual reality, or will spells generate strictly subjective and different effects dependent on the idiosyncrasies of the individual who uses them? Does it matter if the person has read the Harry Potter books or if they haven't? Help us find out!

An example:

Early in July of 2005, I unintentionally stepped on a cat and it bit me. Despite the usual treatment, after a day the bite began to look infected, so when I came across the "Scourgify!" spell (used for cleaning up messes) when rereading The Order of the Phoenix (in preparation for the next book in the series coming out a week later), I decided to incubate a lucid dream that night, to see what effect the spell might have when directed at the wound. The relevant excerpt of my lucid dream account follows:

EWK 7/14/05 "In a corridor, I become fully lucid and remember my task. I take off my left sock, and point my right hand, using my index and middle fingers, at the bite and emphatically say "SCOURGIFY!" A yellow-mustard colored mist comes out of my extended fingers, spraying the bite and surrounding area with a clear yellowish liquid. It thoroughly covers my ankle and foot, but does not stop spraying. . . . Finally, I say "CANCEL!" out loud while looking at my fingers and the spraying stops. I see a drop or two of yellow liquid on my fingertips. (the dream continues) . . ."

Next morning the wound looked much better - two thirds of the redness surrounding the bite area had disappeared. "Scourgify" not only had an effect in my dream, but perhaps in waking physical reality as well.

The Lucid Dream Exchange is a quarterly newsletter featuring lucid dreams and lucid dream related articles and interviews. To subscribe to The Lucid Dream Exchange send a blank email to: TheLucidDreamExchange-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

You can also check us out at www.dreaminglucid.com