Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Lucid Dreaming

I'm trying to have lucid dreams. I can't really say why they fascinate me so much. I used to have them when I was a kid. Mostly they involved climbing to the top of a building and jumping off and flying to the ground.

Recently I read a how-to article on Google about lucid dreams. It had some interesting suggestions. One was to try to have a lucid dream during day. I do succumb to naps more than I like to admit, but I don't recall having dreams at all during those. Another thing the article said was that lucid dreams were most likely to occur during REM sleep. I think that means the hour or so after you fall asleep and the hour or so before you wake.

Well, this morning I awoke at around 6am and turned off my alarm clock. I fell back to sleep and had a complicated dream involving a hotel filled with people from my past and present--and maybe future, because I didn't recognize all of them. From a window I could see far down into a courtyard, where people from my past were gathering for a party to which I hadn't been invited. I was bitter about this, but not surprised, since I have alienated more or less everyone from my past.

Then a guy showed up wearing a sort of ski hat. I recognized him as the handsome young neighbor of my parents who had moved on years ago. I realized all at once that I was having a lucid dream. I remembered that the article had mentioned certain things you can do in a dream to determine that it is a dream. I believe one of them was to check a clock, another was to look in a mirror. Neither things came to mind during the dream, but I thought I remembered the article suggesting that you ask someone to remove his or her hat. That seems unlikely to me now. But in the dream it seemed logical. The guy seemed very reluctant to remove his hat, but I pressed him. Eventually he took it off and then scampered away.

The next thing I knew I was walking along a street with a man whom I supposedly knew. He was in his 50s or 60s and looked familiar but I can't say who he was. I told him, "This is a dream, you know. You're not really here." He looked perturbed and denied it. I insisted, telling him that he may be conscious right now, but that he didn't really exist. This seemed to frighten him. I decided to prove it to him by climbing to the top of a large metal sculpture and jumping off. He and other faceless people on the periphery seemed impressed. I did it several times. There were tall apartment building around the sculpture and I wanted to go into one, go up to the top, and jump off. Something stopped me, though. Fear, laziness--I'm not sure. But I kept scrambling to the top of that sculpture and jumping off.

Some other less noteworthy things happened in the dream but I won't post them here.

In other news:
It's the day before Thanksgiving. I hope that I get a lot of work done and that no one responds to my emails so that I don't have to do anything in response to their response. What a work ethic I have.

I'm way behind on my NaNoWriMo word count: 33,597, with only 10 days left. Let's see if I can do some, I can't. Okay, let me get out my calculator. Okay, I have 16,403 words left to write. Spread evenly over 10 days, that's...1,641 per day. Okay, so I'm not way behind. It's just that it's so slow. The only thing--well, the only two things that keep me going are 1) I want to feel that I've accomplished something, and 2) I remind myself that no one will read it.

I hope that I will feel less like a sinking ship today.

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