Electric Dreams

The Lucid Bird's Words
The Six Basic Steps to Lucid Dreaming  
Step 4 : Becoming Familiar with your Dreams

Marc Vandekeere

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  Vandekeere, Marc (2000 July). The Lucid Bird's Words: The Six Basic Steps to Lucid Dreaming -- Step 4: Becoming familiar with your Dreams. Column. Electric Dreams 7(7). Retrieved July 14, 2000 from Electric Dreams on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams


Step Four) Becoming familiar with your Dreams

The Six Basic Steps by Marc Vandekeere

The following is an excerpt from my manual, The Ultimate Lucid Dreaming Manual Basics and Beyond. I hope it can be used to maximize your lucid dreaming progress. If you find this information helpful you may want to check out my lucid dreaming website for further info, tips, resources and more. The URL of my site is http://how.to/luciddream and if you have any questions, feedback or comments, feel free to send me an email. I'm always happy to hear from other dreamers and love to help out. if and when I can, thelucidbird@mediaone.net . Stay lucid.

So now we've come to the payoff. In order to make this material more user-friendly, the information has been divided into four categories, and there will also be an summarized outline at the end of the manual. By getting an overview at a glance, it may be easier for you to thoroughly learn, absorb and internalize all the information. Hopefully, it will help tighten all the concepts into one working whole.

The Process
Section One - The Six Basic Steps
Section Two - Other methods
Section Three - General tips
Section Four - Tools and Tactics

All these sections have one objective - teaching you how to become lucid in your dreams. After you've learned the process, methods, tips, tools, and tactics, we'll cover the more advanced techniques that you will need to know once you become lucid.

The Process

There are many techniques and methods that you can use for inducing lucid dreams, but there are basically two different ways of becoming lucid. You can either have dream-induced or wake-induced lucid dreams. Stephen LaBerge coined the term D.I.L.D. (Dream Induced Lucid Dream) for dreams in which you become lucid while within a dream. By training your awareness, you will somehow realize that you are dreaming while you are dreaming. This is by far the most common way of having a lucid dream, but it is also possible to directly enter a lucid dream from a waking state. These Wake Induced Lucid Dreams, or W.I.L.D.s, are far more rare, but as LaBerge so aptly labeled them, they are quite an experience. While covering the basics we will be dealing primarily with dream induced lucid dreams. When we move beyond the basics, we will be dealing with the more advanced techniques that will include inducing W.I.L.D.s. There are many methods to induce lucid dreams, but there is an underlying process behind most if not all of them. I've broken this underlying process down into six basic steps that will serve as our beginning regime. Once you absorb these steps and start following them, it is only a matter of time before you have your first lucid dream. In case you are wondering how long it will take for you to have you first one, just follow through with the steps and have faith that you will have one.

According to statistics, the time it takes for someone to have their first lucid dream averages from three weeks to two months, but yours may be tonight so don't be discouraged if you try for a while and don't succeed. There seems to be an obsession in our society for instant results. If you are one of these people, realize that this is one of your first obstacles to overcome. Only one thing is certain - If you never stop trying, you are guaranteed to succeed.

The Six Basic Steps

1) Doing the Mental Prep-Work - see Electric Dreams 7(4) April 2000
2) Increasing dream recall -FOCUS THIS MONTH
3) Keeping a dream journal
4) Becoming familiar with your Dreams
5) Adding Awareness to your Waking Consciousness
6) Linking your Awareness to your Dreams

Step Four) Becoming familiar with your Dreams

As your dream journal grows and your dream recall increases, naturally you will become more familiar with your dreams. Certain people, certain places, and certain activities may be more likely to appear in your dreams. For example, you may have a majority of dreams in which you are at your office or at school or at the beach. Certain dream themes might also be more common than others might. You may dream of being a hero or you may dream of being chased. These recurrent patterns in your dreams are your dreamsigns, and they will be the first stepping stones on your path to lucid dreaming.

By learning your distinctive dreamsigns, you will be able to further increase your recall. Making a list of your dreamsigns is a great idea. If you are having trouble recalling any dreams, you can run down your list of dream signs and question yourself to see if any of them will spark a memory. Sometimes, by jarring just one dream fragment loose you can recover the whole dream so knowing and using your dreamsigns may give you just the edge you need to overcome a morning bout of dream amnesia.

By working with your dreamsigns, you will develop an intimate relationship with your dreams. They will become more accessible and easier to understand. It is helpful to ask yourself why you are dreaming what you dream. What do these dreamsigns mean to you? The more you understand not only your dreamsigns but what they mean, the more you will benefit from them in both your dream life and your waking life.

If at first you are having trouble identifying your dreamsigns, realize that your dreamsigns don't have to be extraordinarily unique. As a matter of fact, they may be the most ordinary things. For example, you may have dreams about your previous day or you may dream of cleaning your house. Whatever it is that you dream about, you need to be noting the patterns and commonalties. You can start with whatever patterns you notice no matter how insignificant they seem. Using these as a springboard, you will soon begin to notice more patterns developing. The process of looking for patterns may in fact create the patterns themselves so if you are having trouble finding your dreamsigns, just keep looking and they will emerge.

The quest to discover and understand your dreamsigns is a lifelong journey because your dream signs are continually evolving just like you. Some themes may last for only a week and then disappear, only to resurface a month later. Other dream signs and patterns will last much longer. As times change and as you change, your dreamsigns being a reflection of you and your thoughts will change as well. Keeping up with your dreamsigns will keep you in touch with yourself.

With the help of your journal, you can easily spot the recurrent dreamsigns and you can get an overview of how they are changing. As you are making entries to your journal, you should make note of any dreamsigns that you spot. You can underline them or put a star next to them. Any notation will do as long as it is consistent and noticeable. The idea is to have them accessible at a glance so when you pick up your journal in the future you will easily see the change in the pattern of patterns, your ever-changing dreamsigns.

Identifying your dreamsigns also plays a crucial part in the lucid dreaming process. Your dreamsigns are in effect "signs that you are dreaming". As you will soon learn in the sixth step, you can train yourself to notice your dreamsigns while you are dreaming and this will be your springboard into lucidity, but before we hop into that topic we will discuss ways of strengthening your awareness.

Next Month on Electric Dreams:
Step Five) Adding Awareness to your Waking Consciousness