Credit: Sharon McCutcheon on Unplash

My First Lucid Dream

For those of you who read my previous post, I talked a lot about lucid dreaming and video games, and how they’re similar. Click here, if you want to check it out!

The whole post is about how I spent the whole summer of 2020 learning how to lucid dream. But there was problem. Days, weeks, almost a whole month went by — nothing. No matter how hard I practiced I wasn’t getting anywhere. But, that wasn’t until near midsummer when I had my first lucid dream.

But, here’s the thing: I completely forgot to include what that dream was about! I think its best to start talking about what that dream was. Don’t expect anything crazy or insane about the dream, nothing too excited happened in it.

(Quick note: This wasn’t my first lucid dream, but this was my first VIVID lucid dream that lasted longer than 5 seconds. The first one I had was about seven years ago, and it wasn’t anything too entertaining).

It was about a month into practicing lucid dreaming, and I would do the same routine at night. Lie in my bed, close my eyes, and tell myself that I will lucid dream. This is known as the MILD Technique, and although I wasn’t really good at it, I hoped it would work.

The goal of the technique is pretty simple. Lie in bed, be absolutely still (do not move a SINGLE muscle), and tell yourself that you will lucid dream. Repeat this mantra in your head over and over again. Eventually, you’ll begin to feel yourself fall asleep, slip away, and enter into a lucid dream.

I didn’t really expect anything to work. I’ve been doing this technique constantly, and almost every night with no success. In fact, with every passing night that went by without having a lucid dream, I started skipping days. I just slowly began to give up hope that this technique would actually accomplish anything.

But, little did I know, it would work.

The dream started as a normal dream, except that I was at my college. I was walking alongside my professor and other students in my class to our building. It was only five of us total (myself, the professor, and three other students).

We sat down, and I told them about lucid dreaming. I told that them one of the most important tools in lucid dreaming is a ‘reality check.’

“In order for to become lucid in a dream, you need to perform a ‘reality check,’” I said to them. “Basically, a reality check is a technique that tells you if you’re in a lucid dream or not.” Ironically, I said this to them while completely oblivious that I was in a dream.

“Let me give you an example, if you’re inside a dream than you won’t have any memory of what happened before, so lets test that! Let’s see if I’m inside one right now.” I tried to remember anything that happened before I walked into the building, but nothing. I couldn’t remember anything.

“Oh,” I thought to myself. “Well, I guess I’m inside of a dream.” Wait, I’m DREAMING? At this point, I became so aware that I was inside of a dream that I had complete control over my own body. I was completely conscious. I was no longer a spectator in my dream, but I was the only controlling it.

“I can’t believe this, I’m dreaming!” I exclaimed to myself. But, I still wanted to perform another reality check, so I decided to do one of the most basic techniques. Take your finger from your right hand and try to push it through the palm of your left hand. If you’re dreaming, it’ll go through.

Low and behold, my finger went through. I really couldn’t believe that, but just as that happened, I woke up.

About 10 seconds… that’s how long I lasted inside a lucid dream. I should be excited, but I was pissed.

Photo by Kevin Pérez on Unsplash

“Oh hell no!” I said. “I did not just spend the last month practicing lucid dreaming just to have a ten second dream!”

Out of pure anger and spite, I immediately closed my eyes, and decided that I was going to fall asleep and go back into that dream. In about less than ten seconds I was asleep.

I “woke” up back in the dream (but I wasn’t lucid), and I was outside of the building where my classroom was at (the same classroom where I had a lucid dream). This time, there was no one around me, it was just myself.

“Where was everyone at? Why isn’t anyone at the building? Class is about to start soon, they should be nearby.” Again, I was so oblivious to what was happening. I had no memory of anything that happened before the dream.

Just as that happened, the phone in my pocket started buzzing. I pulled it out of my pocket, and one of my classmates wanted to Facetime me. I answered it.

“Hello?” I said.

“Hey, sorry I’m gonna be late to class. I’m currently falling out of the sky,” she said.

I paused. I could only think of one word.

“What?”

I stared at the ground, and tried to comprehend what she said. Something felt off, but I didn’t know what it was. Then, it was as if reality came to a stop. Time stopped moving.

“What do you mean you’re falling out of the sky? That’s impossible,” I said.

I slowly started to process what was happening before I realized it. I was dreaming!

The environment suddenly shifted, and I found myself outside of my house on the front lawn. I looked around. Everything was a blue haze. My vision was a bit foggy, but I could see somewhat fine.

Where things genuinely felt trippy is when I could feel my chest rise up and down. I could hear myself breath!! My vision was somewhat split between the dream world and reality.

The blue haze was very heavy, almost as if it was early morning. The sun wasn’t about to rise yet, but nighttime was clearly over.

Credit: Claudio Testa on Unsplash

It kinda looked like this, but replace the trees with a typical suburban, neighborhood. It wasn’t as clear as this photo because my vision was more blurry.

“If this is a dream, then technology should not work,” I said.

I was still holding onto my phone, and we were still on Facetime. But, just as I started concentrating on her face, she turned into a picture. I didn’t react to the change, I kinda expected it, but I loosened my grip on the phone and watched it fall to the ground.

I left the front lawn and started walking down the road. “So, this is what it’s like to be inside of a dream.”

I started thinking about things that I could do. “Could I fly?” I said. I looked down at my feet, and I was securely in place on the concrete road. Maybe if I was lucky, I could jump up and start flying!

One hop… and nothing. I just fell back down to the ground. Eh, I shrugged my shoulders, looked back up, and continued walking down the road. Maybe another time.

As I started thinking of other things I could do, I realized something: my visions is still pretty blurry! Well, I should fix that.

I knew that I ultimately had control over my dream, and I should hypothetically make it more clear. So, I knew what to do. I needed to demand clear vision.

I stopped walking, stood in place, and gave a stern shout, “Dream, become more vivid!”

Just then, things became a bit brighter, and more vivid! The blue haze wasn’t gone yet, but my vision started to clear up. Okay, lets do it again! “Dream, become more vivid!” Again, my vision became more clear! The blue haze was going away. If I tried hard enough, maybe I could fully invest myself into this dream and make it become as identical as real life.

One. more. time! “Dream, become more vivid!”

Boom, I woke up. Well, I think I knew what went wrong. I pushed the dream too far, and it forced me into waking up.

I cannot tell you how satisfying it was to finally become lucid in a dream. Its important to understand that this came after almost a month of hard and never-ending practice.

Photo by Marcos Paulo Prado on Unsplash

Having my first, vivid, lucid dream was tough. It was hard, and there were many moments that I wanted to give up. But, I’d recommend everyone to try it! Even if you aren’t interested in pursuing it as a hobby, being in a lucid dream is a very unique experience. I can tell you that this blog post does not do this justice.

If you really want to know what a lucid dream is like, go out and try it! Jump in and practice it! Look up YouTube tutorials, and buy books on it.

The whole thing is a journey from the moment you start to the moment you have you first lucid dream. But, that isn’t the end, only merely the beginning.

If you want a beginning point, I’d recommend “Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming,” by Stephen LaBerge and Howard Rheingold. Its such a fascinating read and it can really give you a good starting point for lucid dreaming.

So, what are you waiting? Go out and learn how to lucid dream!

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Stories on video games, and diving into philosophy behind them. Check out new posts every Saturday!

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Charles Zinn

Charles Zinn

Stories on video games, and diving into philosophy behind them. Check out new posts every Saturday!

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