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    Thread: Memory: the Forgotten Fundamental

    1. #1
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      Memory: the Forgotten Fundamental

      I’ve noticed that as the waves of techniques, tips, and testimonials regarding lucid dreaming pass relentlessly across these forums, one fundamental of LD’ing seems to be consistently untouched by the flow: Memory. The other two fundamentals -- self-awareness and expectation/intention -- are talked about often, but somehow memory gets, well, forgotten. So I thought I would start a thread about memory, in the hopes that some productive discussion emerges about it. That discussion could be scientific, philosophic, psychological, or even mystical, I don’t care -- just as long as we’re making some effort to have memory gain its place on the pantheon of what matters in LD’ing. Here, to start things off, are a few of my thoughts, which may or may not include a few things to discuss:

      First, you might assume that memory mentioned regularly, in the form of dream recall or prospective memory in MILD -- and it is -- but those are only functions of memory, and not memory itself. In the simplest of terms, memory in the context of lucid dreaming, and this thread, is the same as memory in the context of waking life: the storehouse of a lifetime of information, sensations, experiences, relationships, emotions, images, and everything else that combines to form, ultimately, an individual. Memory defines who we are; without it and its context we cease to exist. Our physical forms might still be here, but without memory we are little more than waking-life dream characters. And of course, without access to memory in dreams we are no more than dream characters, period.

      Given all that, the role memory plays in LD’ing becomes obvious. Yes, for lucidity it is important to be self-aware in a dream, but that self-awareness has minimal meaning or spiritual volume until a dreamer is also able to tap her memory. In other words, a person who is self-aware in a dream but who cannot access memory can do little more than realize that she is dreaming – this is very nice, sure, but it only represents the tip of the iceberg of LD’ing. In order for a dreamer to be fully lucid, to have her entire being in a dream, memory must be accessible. But those are just words; let’s get a bit more practical:

      Again, the memory I speak of here should not be confused with dream recall. Dream recall is certainly important, but that importance lies in adding to memory rather than accessing it. In the case of memory as a LD’ing fundamental I'm talking about accessing your waking-life memory processes when lucid; remembering, during the dream, that you have a waking-life existence, that you consciously stepped away from that existence a few minutes ago, and that you still have a sleeping body right where you left it. This might seem a little silly at first glance, but it is critical toward drawing your waking-life awareness into your dream. This is the case for two major reasons (and plenty more, most likely):

      First, the core of non-lucid dreaming consciousness, the basis of your dream-character “you,” is that the DC “you” cannot remember that the dream started a few minutes ago (most non-lucids have a built-in assurance – thanks mainly to absent memory -- that the current dream scene is both real and has always been there), and that you are sure that your DC body is the real thing. It is not that your mind is addled or your so-called “dream logic” is flawed, as it is popular to believe; no, your cognition is working fine in dreams. What is missing, or rather what is inaccessible during NLD's, is your storehouse of experience and knowledge from which you could gather that there really are, say, no swimming pools on the moon.

      Remembering those things I said above, like that your sleeping body is right where you left it, should help re-attach your consciousness to your core memory and allow your self-awareness to assert itself with proper waking-life awareness. This action will redefine the “reality” of the dream, the rules of the dream, and perhaps even the dream itself. So, you cannot have true -- and certainly not strong -- waking-life self-awareness in your dream if you do not remember that the dream-character body you are currently occupying is not your physical body.

      Second, once you’ve passed this initial hurdle, you likely will have switched your brain’s memory-access circuits back to the “on” position, from the “off” position to which they are naturally set during sleep. This will allow you to remember your current dream goals, prolonging techniques, the waking-world histories of the dream-characters populating your dream (giving you opportunity to wonder/explain what they’re doing there), and a host of other things. Basically, you will be truly awake in the dream when memory is accessed, and waking-life self-awareness (aka: lucidity) will have opportunity to prosper.

      Again, it is certainly possible, and quite common, to have low-level lucid dreams without memory access switched on, but you will never get much further than that initial feeling of “knowing” this is a dream. For instance, you will still be surprised by events around you because your dreaming mind is still in control, you will have difficulty doing things like flying because you still believe your dream-character body is real, and you might for the same reason have a tendency to believe that the other dream-characters around you are the real things, and not just avatars of people you know (or don’t, as it were)... now for the dream-sharers and astral-projectors out there, there’s no reason not to believe that those avatars represent actual people trying to contact you, but you must remember that they are just representations and not the real thing; there is a difference.

      It is also possible, with memory absent, to have a non-lucid dream during which you think you are lucid. I used to get these "False Lucids" all the time, as my dreaming mind obliged my expectations and gave me all the things it assumed I wanted to fulfill my current lucid fantasy. So I did all the cool stuff without a grain of waking-life awareness or actual control, all because I failed to remember my true nature and condition -- and the fact that the dream world I was in was created just moments earlier.

      Here is one quick hopefully helpful hint to ease that effort: it is a good thing to always include some mention of memory during your reality checks and when you set your intention before sleep. For instance, when practicing reality checks during waking life (and everyone should be doing that!), don’t just confirm that the clock didn’t change, or that your hand still has five fingers, but, when you're done checking your state, take another moment to remember exactly what you were doing say, fifteen minutes earlier. And when you set your intention at bedtime, add a simple “I will remember” to your stated plans.

      tl;dr: the memory I speak of here is, I suppose, nothing more -- and nothing less -- than the memory you access during waking life. It is the experiential, foundational background that defines your individual self. That memory must be present during a LD seems to me to be a no-brainer -- while I’m awake. When I’m asleep, and memory access is turned off, the story is much different, and it can take real effort, and strong self-awareness, to access waking-life memory.

    2. #2
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      Great post, Sageous!
      Have been thinking about it before, that it might be good to really get myself to fully understand and realize, that there's a body lying asleep somewhere.
      I had experiences where this opened up waking memory and at the same time somehow increased vividness and realism of the dream.
      Hopefully I'll remember!

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      Read mostly Tl;dr version at this point. Going to read it again and again. I too hope to remember to remember. Will may be more important here. *giggles*. '
      Always wondered why/how is the transition from lying in bed to being in a dream almost Always blank. Just another memory facet that is unknown. Equally of importance is remembering who I am and what I stand for as I go through waking life. I think I will start here, thanks Sageous. Much love.

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      This makes sense, and it does seem to be a strong factor in how “high-leveled” I feel a LD I just had was. For me, the memory access doesn't usually seem so much either off or on as somewhere in the middle. I might recognize that the cat I see was one I had earlier in life and not now but fail to notice that I'm in my childhood house. Or I'll recognize the rooms are laid out differently but forget what my goals for the dream were supposed to be.

      I've been practicing restoring memory access at the beginning of my LDs by RRCing and trying to remember WL details. So far, I've had some in which I found I couldn't remember where I'm sleeping (kind of funny since I only ever sleep in one location!) but remembered enough to be able to guess correctly, and others where I was not only able to remember where I was in WL but also what time it was, what day of the week it was, and even the fact that I was experimenting with autosuggestion just before falling asleep.

      I haven't seen a lot of difference yet with things like duration and control (which I've always been relatively weak in for some reason) but I've only had a handful of LDs' worth of practice so far, which doesn't say much. I'm also interested in hearing others' thoughts/experiences and am eagerly awaiting my own results once I've actually given the idea a chance.
      Last edited by Travis E.; 01-30-2015 at 01:36 AM.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Travis E. View Post
      I've been practicing restoring memory access at the beginning of my LDs by RRCing and trying to remember WL details. So far, I've had some in which I found I couldn't remember where I'm sleeping (kind of funny since I only ever sleep in one location!) but remembered enough to be able to guess correctly, and others where I was not only able to remember where I was in WL but also what time it was, what day of the week it was, and even the fact that I was experimenting with autosuggestion just before falling asleep.

      I haven't seen a lot of difference yet with things like duration and control (which I've always been relatively weak in for some reason) but I've only had a handful of LDs' worth of practice so far, which doesn't say much. I'm also interested in hearing others' thoughts/experiences and am eagerly awaiting my own results once I've actually given the idea a chance.
      Travis,

      Are you using autosuggestion as a technique for memory restoration during LDs? If so I'll be interested to follow your progress as I started something similar for dream recall. My exact technique is:

      1) I've compiled a list of affirmations for dream recall touching on importance/value of my dreams, efficacy of my dream recall and clarity and vividness of my dreams.

      2) I start my bedtime routine with 5 or so minutes of mindfulness of breath.

      3) I pick one affirmation from each category and write and then vocalize each one 10 times.

      4) Other stuff like reviewing previous night's DJ entries, dream signs and doing a RC.

      5) Pop in the earbuds, turn on the ipad nano with all the dream recall related affirmations, turn off the lights and slip off into sleep.

      So the written/spoken affirmations are first person, and the audio affirmations are second person and reinforcing of the prior. The audio track is about 4.5 minutes and contains each affirmation repeated 10 times. I have 7 copies in a playlist. As I understand, our brains switch to Theta as we approach sleep and remain in that state for 10 or so minutes after going under. So this gives me some time to fall off and have at least 10 minutes playing while I'm actually sleeping.

      Anyway the other night was the first night I used this method and instead of my average 2.5 dreams recalled a night I had 7. Now that might be a one-off (last night only 3) and I'll know soon enough, but since I started working on dream recall 3 weeks back my previous high water mark was 5 and I had 4 once, but it's usually 2 or 3 and sometimes only 1. Also the clarity and detail seemed above normal the night with 7.

      So... I'm thinking for me if this proves to be effective and after I have improved my dream recall I'll switch to lucidity affirmations. I was assuming it could be applied to dream control further on down the road, but I hadn't given any real thought to this aspect of memory Sageous has pointed out.
      Last edited by JustASimpleGuy; 01-30-2015 at 02:25 AM.
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      Learned alot from this post Sageous. I was always wondering why I would become lucid, but yet not remember that I was truly dreaming. I never really realized, "Hey this is all just a dream, its all in my mind so I can do whatever I want". I'm going to work on this.

      "If we doubted our fears instead of doubting our dreams, imagine how much in life we'd accomplish." ~Joel Brown
      "Your background and circumstances may have influenced who you are, but you are responsible for who you become." ~Darren Hardy


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      Goals:
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      -Continue to have a dream plan for most of my lucid dreams

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      As I mentioned in the other threads, I know that I am dreaming in most every dream in some capacity, I just don't count it as a lucid unless I act on the fact.

      I think that it is interesting that there are no guides for this. I always wanted a persistent dream character and persistent places, yet in a lot of lucid dreams I couldn't even remember who I was barely. I may stop and look around, knowing that this is a dream. I have even laid down and tried to remember goals, but sometimes it is just really hard to remember goals. I have tried to look it up on computers etc. One of the things that dutchraptor said was to try and remember that everything is fake and that everything is in your mind. Using this thought, it seems like the extent of what you can do in a dream is down to what you remember. For a dream goal I simply have to be able to pull it up at any time of the day. It is quite hard for me to find dream goals that I care about enough to do this, so this why lucid dares and TOTMs are not really chosen for

      Is there any more to go along with this? Meditation... I will remember... What was I doing 15 minutes ago... Try to remember your day in a dream... Interesting.

      I am gonna see what I can work with this. Might be able to kick my dream goals butts and get into the next level of lucid dreaming.
      I will be on hiatus again, if you have any questions, then read these threads and PM me after.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sensei View Post

      Is there any more to go along with this? Meditation... I will remember... What was I doing 15 minutes ago... Try to remember your day in a dream... Interesting.

      .
      What was a powerful training routine for me, was to have only this one primary goal, and keep going this until it is not too hard.

      Dream Goal: Stop and try to remember where you are sleeping. Then what were you doing at bedtime. Then what phase of your life you are in, such as retired, in summer school, recently involved in a new relationship.

      It is not as shiny as flying to another planet, but as goals that lead to better LDing this is what I suggest.


      I hope that is the kind of stuff you are wanting to talk about in this thread, Sageous. It seems to fit. Thanks for taking the time to bring this topic back up, before it gets buried in dust. It is important.
      Peace Be With You. Oh, and sure, The Force too, why not.



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      Quote Originally Posted by JustASimpleGuy View Post
      Are you using autosuggestion as a technique for memory restoration during LDs? If so I'll be interested to follow your progress as I started something similar for dream recall.
      Not for memory, no, but that's an interesting idea. I recently started experimenting with it to try to enhance my DILD rate, but for the last week or two I've decided to try my hand at dream incubation with it. It's a bit too early to say if anything's happening for sure, but it seems like I'm occasionally getting dreams that are inching closer to my goal.

      My method isn't too elaborate right now; I just repeat a mantra to myself (along with a little visualization) saying I'm doing whatever my goal is for a while whenever I'm going to sleep (with my dream recall in full swing, I'm waking up quite a few times a night, which leaves several opportunities to do that) and sometimes on one or two occasions during the day.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      Here is one quick hopefully helpful hint to ease that effort: it is a good thing to always include some mention of memory during your reality checks and when you set your intention before sleep. For instance, when practicing reality checks during waking life (and everyone should be doing that!), don’t just confirm that the clock didn’t change, or that your hand still has five fingers, but, when you're done checking your state, take another moment to remember exactly what you were doing say, fifteen minutes earlier. And when you set your intention at bedtime, add a simple “I will remember” to your stated plans.
      The theory being out of habit that will manifest during a reality check in a dream and have the potential to connect with waking memory? Perhaps by leading to a dead-end in backward dream time and trigger an insight/realization of waking life, thereby providing a frame of reference to contrast the two realities and increasing lucidity in respect to memory?
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      This is a great thread, I have in fact been thinking about memory and access to memory and that I've probably been neglecting it. It's wonderful that you've brought it up.

      In Memm's recent great note in my 2015 "year of the breath" resolucid & "blog" thread, he introduces the notion of getting it into your head that your job at night is to rest and to lucid dream: to *remember* that in dreams, our goal is to remember to recognize the dream state.

      In fact, access to memory may be the final obstacle in my way to much more frequent, and much more aware/awesome LDs. My LD foundation is teetering over, not in balance, on the side of the leg of "memory" I strongly suspect.

      At the end of the OP you gave a few suggestions for concrete steps to improve it. I'd be interested in reading more about approaches to do so.
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      Breaking Down the Wall
      There is a wall that divides the physical world from the dream
      world. This division is the fundamental feature that keeps us all from
      entering the lucid dream state readily and easily. The division is
      mysterious, daunting and historically has only been crossed by a few
      lucky or talented people. The information herein opens up this
      experience to practically anyone who is willing and able to try, and
      the experience allows us to ask, “What is it that creates this wall in
      the first place?” One popular answer is that this wall is created by a
      loss of consciousness; when we go to sleep we simply lose
      consciousness and the ego ceases to exist. I have serious doubts
      about this theory. In my view it is not consciousness that fails us, it is
      our memory. No memory results in a loss of identity but not lack of
      consciousness. Based on personal experience, I do not agree with
      either dream theory presented in the beginning of this book. I believe
      we are continually dreaming throughout the night. I believe our
      consciousness is always continuous during every instant of our
      existence. I believe it is our memory that breaks down during sleep
      leaving us with almost complete amnesia. It is no coincidence that
      the best lucid dream triggers are powerful memory boosters. Today’s
      dream theories are based on the premise that when people are
      awakened from deep sleep, they don’t remember their dreams.

      Researchers extrapolate this to mean that they don’t dream
      during deep sleep, as if the ability to remember and the ability to
      experience were the same thing. The Tibetans believe it is possible
      to hold on to consciousness during deep sleep and to actually
      remember it when you wake up. If we are to become the best that we
      can become with our lucid dream development, we must learn how to
      break down this wall. I have developed an exercise that is designed
      to do just that.
      Most people rarely remember their dreams. Night after night
      we enter a dream world filled with adventure and mystery, yet
      morning after morning we have absolutely no recollection of it. Most
      lucid dream enthusiasts keep a dream journal to try to break down
      this wall. Trying to remember your dreams does help and I do keep
      an active and up to date dream journal. There is another exercise
      however, that is at least ten times as beneficial. The wall that divides
      the dream from the physical is two sided and just as it is difficult to
      remember your dreams in the physical; it is equally difficult to
      remember the physical in your dreams.
      At the beginning of every lucid dream I practice a few minutes
      of “physical recall”. I have found that, when using the supplement
      approach to lucid dreaming, factual kinds of information are easy to
      recall, much easier than when no supplements are used. This is
      probably because both acetylcholine and norepinephrine boost
      memory and the best lucid dream triggers either boost acetylcholine
      or norepinephrine levels within the brain. Information like my name,
      address, family members’ names and birthdays, even my credit card
      number are easily shouted out. The challenge comes when dealing
      with experiential memories. Trying to remember anything that I did
      The Power of Supplements
      172
      that day is much more difficult. Ask yourself what you had for
      breakfast and you may find yourself standing there in the dream with
      your mouth hanging open saying “uhhhhhhhh”. This ability can be
      drastically improved with practice, and as it improves you will find
      yourself having more and more high level lucid dreams, even on
      nights when no supplements are used. The approach I use is to think
      about a specific event that I want to remember as I am getting ready
      to enter a lucid dream. I purposely don’t try to remember or rehearse
      all of the details; I just try to place the event firmly in my mind. Then
      when I get to the point that I am seeding my visualization, I do so by
      giving myself short visual snapshots of different parts of the memory.
      After I enter the lucid state I keep seeding the dream with the same
      kind of visual snapshots. This transforms the dream into a
      reenactment of the memory. It is an amazing experience. If left
      unattended the dream will naturally go off on some tangent but if you
      keep dropping the seeds it can snap the dream back to acting out the
      memory. This undeniably leads to the best recall of any event
      because you actually relive it instead of just remember it. Doing this
      exercise on a regular basis actively breaks down the wall that
      separates the two states. You will find that you are remembering
      dreams in great detail even on the nights that you don’t use
      supplements and you will find that you can start to recall more and
      more of the details from your physical life while in the dream. When
      you really start to remember your physical life while in dream, you
      naturally start to have lucid dreams much more often. It becomes
      easy to recognize the dream state. This exercise also has a
      significant impact on dream recall. Understand that vivid sensory
      experience and vivid recall are not synonymous. Performing this
      Breaking Down the Wall
      173
      exercise while you are also actively trying to remember your dreams
      when you awake, acts to break down the wall from both sides and
      once the wall starts to fall, lucidity goes way up.

      Thomas Yuschak
      Advanced lucid dreaming: The power of supplements

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      If you want scientific this is a great place to go, they are very long discussions between a lot of scientists and monks:

      Dialogues with the Dalai Lama - Mind and Life Institute

      It was a while ago that I watched some of these but I think "2009 Mind and Life XVIII — Attention, Memory, and the Mind" was the one that touched on meditation, mindfulness and how it relates to memory quite a bit.

      To sum it up; one of the things meditation does is build the Sati* faculty of the mind and it is inherently linked to memory. You can't remember something if you aren't aware of it in the first place, you also can't remember it if you don't find it significant somehow (which I talked a lot about in my MILD Mnemonics thread, basically lack of focus) and you also can't recall it if your mind is "blocked" (which can be from a lot of things), just to name a few issues.

      A friend of mine once mentioned that he knows someone who sits in single pointed meditation while studying for exams and that is how he manages to memorise the large amount of content.

      I suppose some people might not want to hear this (or sick of hearing it) but meditation is your "wonder drug" that builds all the basic skills needed for LDing. Mindfulness of the breath is a genius method of cultivation, you learn how to calm down, how to concentrate, how to return after distraction, builds your memory and task-switching and you can do it anywhere, at any time and in any state as long as you're still breathing.

      Of course you can also substitute the breath for other things at your leisure, for example if you're doing sports if you don't keep your mind on the ball it might hit you in the face to remind you, but if you're doing seated meditation then every time you feel "oh, right, I was focusing on my breath, breath in... breath out... breath in... ooo butterfly, oh wait I was focusing on my breath..."** you've built your memory a little bit, so 5 minutes of meditation is 5 minutes of memory building, 20 minutes is 20 minutes of memory building, an hour is an hour of memory building (a bit simplified but basically).



      * I don't know Pali but from my understanding this word describes everything you're talking about related to memory and LDing.

      Sati (Buddhism) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      **
      Sleep, sleep, sleep, dream, dream, dream, oh wait I was going to LD, LD, LD, LD.
      Last edited by Memm; 01-30-2015 at 02:34 PM.
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      ^^ Wow, Nfri, how did that golden nugget slip by my attention when I read through Yuschak? Well, I bet I know: "Yeah, yeah, blah memory blah blah blah, cmon, let's get to the drugs!" Heh, I bet I need to re-read all the things I read a year ago before I had my "enlightenment."

      p.s. not once in a lucid have I contemplated "my body is asleep in bed, and this amazing dreaming experience is all the creation of my mind." I remember (TOTM, competition) goals reasonably well, though. Having such a reflective moment at the start of an LD is moving to the top of my list. It will, as Nfri's Yuschak excerpt and as Sageous has been telling us since forever, take my LDs up to the next level, I'm positive.
      Last edited by FryingMan; 01-30-2015 at 02:22 PM.
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      Hey Nfri, I don't go with your idea that we dream all through the night. There are clearly very different levels of activity that can be measured in the sleeping brain, and the slow wave Delta activity really does seem to be that the brain is working at a much slower pace than when in REM.
      No one quite understands why we dream, but the chemical cycles strongly suggest heightened consciousness during dreams.

      I don't quite get the point about memory either. Our life experience memories don't disappear when we sleep. They are still there, and it is the block on recall of those memories that stops or hinders lucid dreaming.
      We should redefine consciousness to include dreaming as an inner consciousness, and waking life as external consciousness perhaps?

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      It's a bit wanton to put it here, even while it deals with memory access and normal/lucid dreams at points, it's more so that I wanted to give this to you anyway, Sageous, see what you think of it. My favourite philosopher Thomas Metzinger on consciousness and dreams:

      http://www.philosophie.uni-mainz.de/...nen/Dreams.pdf

      That's a loong tractus and in a rather sophisticated language - no need to read at all, or it all of course, but maybe when you're in the mood to, you might find it interesting - not only you of course, but I thought of you first for some reason, and Zoth.



      Got it from a link from here - more easily digestible and directly about LDing: Getting Lucid about Consciousness

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      great thread. My best LD so far had me state my vitals at the beginning of it. Even speaking it out loud (name, occupation, age etc..) had a profound effect on the experience. I wonder why I have only done it twice yet... also, saying "I am dreaming right now" always has some effect. Sometimes it will make DCs alert and look at me, or I get better clarity... sometimes also worse I ended at least one LD with this sentence. The complete realization that I have a dreaming body somewhere led me to wake up.
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      Great posts all, guys, thanks! It's best when the conversation goes on without me, I think, but I wanted to throw in a couple of quick thoughts:

      Quote Originally Posted by JustASimpleGuy View Post
      The theory being out of habit that will manifest during a reality check in a dream and have the potential to connect with waking memory? Perhaps by leading to a dead-end in backward dream time and trigger an insight/realization of waking life, thereby providing a frame of reference to contrast the two realities and increasing lucidity in respect to memory?
      In a word: yup.

      I think your question was rhetorical, but I figured I should answer to confirm that you got it mostly right -- I tend to shy away from the word "habit," because habits imply rote behavior that can just as likely lead to false lucids (i.e., dreams about doing that RC, and "remembering," thanks to your ever-agile dreaming mind, places other than your bed). Instead of "habit," think in terms of that bit of remembering where you just were after a RC helping you develop a general mindset that includes an interest in remembering... so, should you do a RC after you realize you are lucid, you will want to remember where your sleeping body is.

      On writing the above, I realize that I might just be talking semantics here, and "habit" and "general mindset" are pretty much the same thing. I don't believe they are, but I won't argue that they are not.

      Quote Originally Posted by FryingMan View Post
      ... not once in a lucid have I contemplated "my body is asleep in bed, and this amazing dreaming experience is all the creation of my mind." I remember (TOTM, competition) goals reasonably well, though. Having such a reflective moment at the start of an LD is moving to the top of my list. It will, as Nfri's Yuschak excerpt and as Sageous has been telling us since forever, take my LDs up to the next level, I'm positive.
      Well, better late than never, right?

      Since it's been brought up a few times already, let me reiterate that trying to remember where your sleeping body is, and that it is both asleep and not the "body" you are currently occupying, is about the best way I know to restore your connection with memory. Funny thing about remembering more abstract things like dream goals: though that is always a good thing to do, dream goals are items (call them "day-residue-plus," because you have likely included your goals when generating expectations during the day or setting intention at bedtime) that may already be built into your dream schemata (a very good thing, BTW), and are idling in your unconscious until you lucidly get to them... in other words, you can access your goals without modifying your weak or absent connection to memory. Better to remember something real, like the fact that just a few minutes ago you were falling asleep in bed, and that your body is still there, snoozing away.

      Another thought I just had along these lines, remembering your sleeping body is also better than the "remember to remember" exercise, in terms of reconnecting with memory. Though remembering to remember is a great thing to do for building your self-awareness, and a good practice in waking-life as well, it too might be a bit too abstract or potentially esoteric to guarantee a reconnect with your memory.

      Quote Originally Posted by Goldenspark View Post
      Hey Nfri, I don't go with your idea that we dream all through the night. There are clearly very different levels of activity that can be measured in the sleeping brain, and the slow wave Delta activity really does seem to be that the brain is working at a much slower pace than when in REM.
      No one quite understands why we dream, but the chemical cycles strongly suggest heightened consciousness during dreams.
      I hope Nfri doesn't mind if I butt in here -- and still answers you on his own -- but I believe that consciousness can function just fine during delta (or at any other time of the night). I believe this not just because I've managed a few full nights of self-awareness, so for me it is proven, but because consciousness is always active at some level; yes, during delta sleep we do lack the levels of consciousness enjoyed in REM, but consciousness is still present and can be elevated -- especially if you are able to hold onto self-awareness and remember during delta!

      I don't quite get the point about memory either. Our life experience memories don't disappear when we sleep. They are still there, and it is the block on recall of those memories that stops or hinders lucid dreaming.
      We should redefine consciousness to include dreaming as an inner consciousness, and waking life as external consciousness perhaps?
      No, our life-experience memories do not disappear; we simply lose access to them during dreams. That was sort of my point, that memory is as complete and functional as ever during sleep, but our capacity to access it at that time is diminished, completely extinguished, or, yes, blocked. So you and I are in agreement here (I'll let Nfri speak for himself).

      I also see no need to redefine consciousness as you describe. I think consciousness itself is pretty much the same in waking-life as it is in dreams; it is your waking-life self-awareness that you are elevating to become lucid, and not consciousness. And in my mind you can be just as unconscious during waking-life as in dreams.


      I will check out those links, Steph; thanks for sharing!


      Thanks again, guys, and I hope you keep up the conversation!
      Last edited by Sageous; 01-30-2015 at 04:38 PM.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post
      I think your question was rhetorical, but I figured I should answer to confirm that you got it mostly right -- I tend to shy away from the word "habit," because habits imply rote behavior that can just as likely lead to false lucids (i.e., dreams about doing that RC, and "remembering," thanks to your ever-agile dreaming mind, places other than your bed). Instead of "habit," think in terms of that bit of remembering where you just were after a RC helping you develop a general mindset that includes an interest in remembering... so, should you do a RC after you realize you are lucid, you will want to remember where your sleeping body is.

      On writing the above, I realize that I might just be talking semantics here, and "habit" and "general mindset" are pretty much the same thing. I don't believe they are, but I won't argue that they are not.
      It was rhetorical, but I did want your take on it and it's much appreciated! As for the semantics, I do believe it's important. I'm experimenting with autosuggestion for dream quality and recall, and depending on the results I will decide whether or not to incorporate it and to what extent into the next steps in my journey (lucidity, control and this quality of memory you're addressing). So I think the wording of the affirmations are of particular importance in order to plant the proper shade of suggestion into the subconscious and that wording, in part, will be dictated by my waking mindset. So yeah, it seems very relevant to me.

      This really is a great thread and I appreciate everyone's input!

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      Quote Originally Posted by Sageous View Post



      I hope Nfri doesn't mind if I butt in here -- and still answers you on his own -- but I believe that consciousness can function just fine during delta (or at any other time of the night). I believe this not just because I've managed a few full nights of self-awareness, so for me it is proven, but because consciousness is always active at some level; yes, during delta sleep we do lack the levels of consciousness enjoyed in REM, but consciousness is still present and can be elevated -- especially if you are able to hold onto self-awareness and remember during delta!



      No, our life-experience memories do not disappear; we simply lose access to them during dreams. That was sort of my point, that memory is as complete and functional as ever during sleep, but our capacity to access it at that time is diminished, completely extinguished, or, yes, blocked. So you and I are in agreement here (I'll let Nfri speak for himself).

      I also see no need to redefine consciousness as you describe. I think consciousness itself is pretty much the same in waking-life as it is in dreams; it is your waking-life self-awareness that you are elevating to become lucid, and not consciousness. And in my mind you can be just as unconscious during waking-life as in dreams.



      Yes I don't doubt that consciousness is there all night, but not dreaming. I just meant that for a normal nights sleep, as each sleep cycle progresses the level of consciousness waxes and wanes as the hormone levels shift.
      Saying that you can have higher levels of consciousness the whole night is a bit like saying you can stay awake all night. Proving that we don't dream all night is almost impossible I guess, but the theoty that we mostly dream during REM, when the brain appears to be almost as active as when awake just seems to make sense.

      I think that shows why lucid dreaming can be such a delicate balance, because the waking consciousness stupour keeps your awareness at bay while you dream. Just at the end of the sleep cycle as the hormones shift to a brief conscious wakening, you cross over from dream to waking and have a brief moment of clarity. Any conscious waking during the dream is quite likely to cause full wakefullness, as most of us know from waking just after an LD begins.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Goldenspark View Post
      Yes I don't doubt that consciousness is there all night, but not dreaming. I just meant that for a normal nights sleep, as each sleep cycle progresses the level of consciousness waxes and wanes as the hormone levels shift.
      Saying that you can have higher levels of consciousness the whole night is a bit like saying you can stay awake all night. Proving that we don't dream all night is almost impossible I guess, but the theoty that we mostly dream during REM, when the brain appears to be almost as active as when awake just seems to make sense.

      I think that shows why lucid dreaming can be such a delicate balance, because the waking consciousness stupour keeps your awareness at bay while you dream. Just at the end of the sleep cycle as the hormones shift to a brief conscious wakening, you cross over from dream to waking and have a brief moment of clarity. Any conscious waking during the dream is quite likely to cause full wakefullness, as most of us know from waking just after an LD begins.
      I doubt we dream all night, but you can certainly stay conscious all night with enough training, even during delta sleep, it's been studied before.

      But then again:



      We just don't have the technology to do proper studies of consciousness yet. Unless you count the brain studying itself.
      Last edited by Memm; 01-30-2015 at 07:57 PM.

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      That's all good, guys (myself included), but keep in mind that this is a thread about memory, and not about consciousness or NREM dreaming; I'm hoping the conversation doesn't start straying off topic this early, no matter how interesting the digression might be!

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      I have run into an interesting and hard (for me) to understand situation in a few lucids. That is that when I preform one of these memory things, I do not get access to anything beyond a certain point in my life, leading me to false conclusions.

      Basically, I would try to remember where my body was located (easy enough? not always) and draw a total blank. To deal with this I would scan my memory for the most chronlogically advanced memory available to me. On a few occassions the entire later portion of my life was not scanable. I mean my house and my wife of 8 years and all things related like a job I have had that long, did not seem to exist. I would find the newest memory and draw the conclusion that it was winter of 2004 and I was in graduate school.

      I just thought I would throw this out there. I have plenty of training, but occassionally this happens, and at the time it seems real.
      Peace Be With You. Oh, and sure, The Force too, why not.



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      Wow, I really enjoyed the OP. It's these kind of threads that keep me coming.

      (^This is all I was going to post but I got carried away...)

      This is obviously the part that I have been neglecting in my lucid dream practice. My lucid dreams have heightened awareness and they are always about attentive exploration of the surrounding world. But they usually lack any satisfying memory of my life outside the dream. That is why, I will often begin thinking the dream is actually an alternate plane that I have accessed and start to act as if I am in a real world.

      The excitement, is that although I don't consider myself a complete beginner at lucid dreaming, I now realize that I might never have experienced a true "lucid dream" (as opposed to the broadly accepted definition: "having the knowledge that you are dreaming.")

      The truth is that, knowledge is very different to things such as intelligence. Intelligence is the ability to use knowledge and new events. I can know words in Spanish for example, but not be able to use them. In the same sense, having the knowledge that you are dreaming doesn't mean you have what it takes to truly understand the implications of it, and how to apply the knowledge.

      For example, as people have been stating, it is common for us to remember some things like "This person is a person I know in real life, they're my friend.", "I have this dream goal to climb Mont Everest" or "I have an exam tomorrow" but these are merely small recollections, not a true access to memory, to who you are and in what context you are.

      Going back to the language example, imagine you forgot all English words and in dreams, you could only remember "Eat", "The", "Family", surely, that could not be any good. We need access to all of it, or most of it anyways.

      Anywho, I now finally understand the importance of "memory" in lucid dreaming, and I will be adding it in my practice of self-awareness and intention.

      That is interesting Sivason, that you would sometimes have cut-off points. I wish I could compare with my own experience but I just now realize how inexperienced I am, and that just makes it all so much more exciting for me.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Occipitalred View Post
      Anywho, I now finally understand the importance of "memory" in lucid dreaming, and I will be adding it in my practice of self-awareness and intention.
      You know, I have an inkling therein lies the key. Gamma oscillation plays an important role in some functions of memory. Gamma synchronicity is tied to insight and very experienced meditators can effortlessly rest in that state, so anything to boost awareness is of critical importance.

      I think a combination of being familiar with that state of mind combined with strong and persistent intentions is a good toolset for unlocking that level of memory in an LD.
      Last edited by JustASimpleGuy; 01-31-2015 at 02:51 AM.

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