So exciting to have read your book!! (bought it at the last IASD conference.) I am also thrilled you are an explorer and love that you are questioning the reality of our curious dream space!
I am a bit frustrated!! I tried for 3 months looking at my hands before sleep and had several dreams of doing things with my hands. No lucidity. For the past 2 months I’m trying “Tonight I will have a lucid dream.” No lucidity. I mostly wake up with non-lucid dreams and continue the mantra. I created crib notes to carry around with me of what to say/ not say/focus/develop questions etc. I am bound and determined to try this….what am I missing? I meditate every day, I view my waking life as a dream, I lead dream groups, record my dreams for 40 years. I will keep at it, but what else do I need to do? I am patient and very persistent…
As a side note, I am adding to my waking life things you mention in your book for lucid dreaming, so I love saying “thought-forms disappear!” “clarity now!” ask open end questions, focus, etc. Makes life seem like 24 hour day…alot of fun and magic!!
Many thanks – I have your promo post card about Lucid Dreaming (book)that I picked up off the table at IASD, now at my Little Free Dream Library in front of my house!
Thanks for your question — and your pursuit of lucid dreams!
My technique of looking at your hands before sleep, while quietly repeating in your mind, “Tonight in my dreams, I will see my hands and realize I am dreaming. Tonight in my dreams, I will see my hands and realize I am dreaming….” — ideally, this should psychologically ‘condition’ you — and when you see your hands, you naturally respond, “Oh, this is a dream!” 😉 However, it sounds like you had dreams of doing things with your hands, but you failed to think, ‘Wait this is a dream!’
So the good thing is that you got half way there — you saw your hands! But the unfortunate thing, the second piece (realizing, “Oh, my hands — this is a dream!”) did not get connected to the first part. 😉 So, a person could do this: Try to connect the two parts more firmly!
You might do this by looking at the palm of your hands for 20 seconds (about ten times during the day) and thinking or imagining, “Oh my hands, this is a dream!” You really have to pair the sight of your hands with the immediate thought, “Oh, this is a dream!”
Now there may be another issue…. which I hesitate to bring up. You write that you have kept a dream journal for 40 years, lead dream groups, etc. It may be that you have an inner belief opposed to lucid dreaming (I say this because lots of ‘long time’ dream workers told me that lucid dreaming was basically evil because you controlled the dream — and in my books, I spend a lot of time showing how it does not mean ‘control’ of dreams — but instead means ‘more aware relating’ to the dream, since you more consciously relate to the contents of the dream).
Can I ask — did you, when you first heard about lucid dreaming 20 or 30 years ago, think ‘Oh, how horrible to control your dream!’ (or something somewhat similar)?
For some people, they have to ‘resolve’ their philosophical issue with lucid dreaming — before they will ‘allow’ themselves a lucid dream!
For some people, their ego/waking self wants to have a lucid dream, but they feel on deeper levels that it is somehow wrong, or not natural. This situation leads to an impasse’.