• Lucid Dreaming - Dream Views




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    The Fourth Factor

    What can I say? Some dreams just call out to be shared. I've always found it interesting to read about other people's dream lives, and now I'm giving them the same chance.

    1. Best Chess Lesson Ever

      by , 05-25-2022 at 03:47 AM (The Fourth Factor)
      Iíve gone to a school building to hold a chess club meeting there. Itís dark, like an early winter morning before school hours, and itís drizzling out. The layout of the building is reminiscent of the second high school I attended. I realize Iíve left my equipment in the car, but I still have plenty of time to get it and set up before students start arriving.

      Iím still setting up when Coach A arrives. (He taught math there, as well as coaching track and cross country.) Heís apparently going to be here for the lesson today. The students start arriving as well, but I still havenít got my board up. Looking around the room, I notice that I also seem to have brought my bouzouki along, in its hard case, as well as a Jolly Roger on a short staff (which, in retrospect, was maybe the first sign that things were about to get a little weird).

      I hang my board in the front of the room, but some students say they could see it better in the back, so I move it there instead and begin the lesson. I start with ladder checkmates, asking whether anyone is already familiar with them. Some are. I continue, but Coach A comes in with an explanation of his own which seems to be a bit of a digression. Iím not really happy about his presence, but he does work here, so I just have to work with the situation.

      In what follows, I give a version of the lesson which is recognizable, though a bit twisted in places, explaining how the rooks work together to trap the opponentís king on one side of the board Ė I recall comparing the rooks to clumps of dough around the king when the checkmate has been accomplished. Iím aware that this seems to be taking an unusually long time, and most of the students who would really benefit from it arenít here today, and at this rate I donít know if Iíll have time for the rook and king checkmate, too.

      I then proceed to explain the checkmate again, in a different way, by launching into a long, elaborate story about a man who is walking along the street one day, minding his own business, when he finds himself closed in by an impassable wall. He tries to escape, but he is already trapped, and the walls keep getting closer and closer without there being anything he can do about it. The visual aspect of the dream is now the storyís events rather than the classroom. I canít remember many of the details now but you can probably get a good idea of what it was like by watching a video on ladder checkmates and then reading Kafkaís The Trial.

      -24.5.22
      Categories
      non-lucid
    2. A Place with a Mind of its Own

      by , 07-14-2020 at 08:23 PM (The Fourth Factor)
      (Note: The longer my dreams are, the harder it is for me to remember details, particularly conversations, and this was a long one. Thereís several hoursí worth of material here that I can only remember happened at all because I can remember remembering it in a later part of the dream, and this does raise questions of whether they ever actually played out. But, for what itís worth, it doesnít feel to me as if thatís what happened, and I do have many cases of knowing dream memory is working in that way to compare it to.)

      The earliest part I can remember is of a disaster taking place, a flood sweeping through a public building of some kind. Everybody is trying to get out. Iím one of the last out, but I wait, holding the door open so that the waters donít forcibly close it and trap the one person whoís still there. It took him a while to believe this was actually happening (understandable, considering how weird it is), so he didnít get out as quickly as everyone else.

      After this series of events is the biggest memory gap, which seems to mainly consist of meeting up with a large group of people and preparing for some kind of expedition together. I become lucid not long before weíre going to set off, although itís not so much me realizing that itís a dream as it is the unconscious knowledge that itís a dream, which Iíve been acting on this whole time, becoming conscious. And this sort of makes it feel as if Iíve been lucid the whole time, if that makes sense.

      Iím looking out the window of a house onto the rolling fields beyond as it happens. I still have some preparation to do here, though, so Iím still here packing as everybody else is leaving. Iím taking my hiking backpack, the black one with yellow trim. It occurs to me to wonder whether I need to do this in a dream, since I can just make things appear if I need them. But I have the impression, based on earlier conversations, that I might not be able to do that in some of the places weíre going, and so Iíll want to make sure I have essentials with me, at least. The last thing I grab is my brown aviator-style jacket, which I fold and pack into the backpack before buckling it and heading downstairs and outside.

      I can just see somebody disappearing past the other side of the house, down a broad stone staircase. Thatís where everybodyís gone. I try flying part of the way, but perhaps because of the hiking backpackóeven though it doesnít feel heavyóitís hard to get more than a couple feet off the ground. But flying seems to be slower than running anyway, so I just run around the side and down the stairs.

      Iím now in an area with several platforms rising a distance above the ground. Next to one on the far side is a cliff wall with a small tunnel partway up, a little above head height. A young women is nearby Ė it seems she had to stop to do something before going onward. I jump onto one of the platforms, where I see some piled-up clothing. I recognize it as a kind of uniform for us to wear. It looks a bit like a karate gi: loose pants and a shirt that ties around the front, white, though a little discolored with age and threadbare in places. On some of the edges, flowers are embroidered in pale colors. I put it on over my clothing.

      Jumping onto the last platform and up to the tunnelótaking off the backpack and pushing it in firstóis practically effortless, much easier than it would be in waking life, which makes it kind of fun. The tunnel is not tall enough to walk in, and it narrows considerably not far ahead, so I push the backpack in ahead of me. It barely fits, and I can see it slide down once it gets past the narrow point, where the tunnel slopes downward. I barely fit, too Ė I actually have to turn my head to the side to squeeze through. But soon, itís large enough to where I can crawl again, and then walk upright.

      The tunnel is made of squares of some smooth material, solid black in the center but with a stripe of red-orange around the edges that glows, lighting the way. As I walk, it slopes further downward and eventually drops me into a corridor with a grimy, institutional feel to it. All dimly and artificially lit, as if Iím somewhere underground.

      It has a distinctly unpleasant vibe Ė although part of the reason may be because of what I know about this place. It is actually a sentient environment, and not a very nice one, and now that Iím inside of it, itís going to be tracking my every move and shaping itself according to my actions and reactions. Itís not the destination Ė just somewhere we have to pass through on the way. Thereíll be a test at the end that has to be passed before we can get out Ė but this place doesnít like people leaving it and will be actively throwing obstacles in our way.

      My backpack isnít here Ė the place probably hid it somewhere, and so Iíll have to be on the lookout for it. I turn towards the right, reading the plates on the doors as I go by, deciding which room to enter first. The place looks to be some sort of school judging by what they say.

      As I walk, faint, unpleasant feeling-tones arise, like the ghosts of memories with an archaic, dark quality to them, although they definitely don't involve my personal past Ė not in this lifetime, anyway. Or maybe theyíre anticipations of what Iíll find here, behind the doors. Or maybe both. I also see a set of stairs leading downwards, but I donít want to leave this floor just yet.

      After reaching the end of the corridor, I head back, still making up my mind. Itís not terribly important where I go first, but I am aware that, as the first deliberate choice I make here, it will give the place some insight into me, will establish the course of how things will go. I decide on a room about midway between the end of the corridor and where I started from labelled ďFaculty Lounge.Ē

      As I open the door, Iím surprised by what I see. Itís a little room, somewhat like the bedroom of a hostel, with two bunk beds, a table off to one side and some assorted furniture Ė overall, quite nice apart from the lack of windows. But the really surprising thing is that itís already occupied by two people from the group I started with.

      Sam is thereóSam, maker of ukuleles, fixer of anything with strings and frets, host of concerts and an accomplished musician in his own right. His dog is there with him. The other person isnít waking-life familiar, although he does somewhat resemble one of my coworkers, with dark hair, pale skin and some kind of facial hair, I think. A dog has come in with me as well, a large, black one. I donít pay much attention to it besides noting that itís mine and hoping that the room isnít going to be too crowded now.

      Sam greets me Ė but he uses a different name, a manís name. They must be seeing this place and this situation differently than I do, I realize. It had been mentioned at the earlier gatherings that it would appear differently to everybody Ė but I had assumed that we would also be going through it alone, individually, and so it hadnít occurred to me that Iíd find myself in this kind of situation. But I can roll with it.

      We talk for a little while. At one point, one of them advises me to be careful not to give this place ďthe impression that Iím somebody it can f*** with.Ē Sam mentions that heís working on a puzzleóit seems to be set up on the table thereóand I say Iíll leave him to it. I mention, though, that Iím good with puzzles, and he invites me to come help put it together. This must be part of their test, I realize Ė and it strikes me that maybe it isnít a coincidence I ended up here to help them with it, although from everything Iíve heard, it would be uncharacteristically benevolent for the place to intentionally direct me to them.

      The puzzle seems to mainly feature cute baby animals, and it is close to being finished. I help assemble the remaining pieces as Sam tells me some anecdotes heís heard about a 20th century Viennese composer. He canít remember which one theyíre about. I notice, though, that the bottom edge of the puzzle isnít complete. Sam is stirring some sort of gooey blue liquid, and I realize that that will also be part of it: the tests, though different, all have one thing in common: incorporating two bowls of these brightly colored mixtures into them somehow.

      14.7.20
    3. Demons or Double Bass?

      by , 01-15-2020 at 12:33 AM (The Fourth Factor)
      I am on a computer, looking through files. Iím trying to find papers from an earlier part of the dream where Iíd stayed after a math class drawing, and the teacher had brought over a stack of graded assignments heíd apparently been working on while I sat there. Iíd just glanced at them and seen thatíd Iíd done really well on them before taking off, but now I want a closer look, and this was apparently where they were.

      I scroll through small pictures, some of which began to move. One has expanded to fill the whole screen. It shows a house on fire, people running out. It scrolls past a small stage on which two double basses stand, one the traditional sort, another more metallic Ė electric by the look of it, but still a roughly double bass size and shape. It sits in a sort of flower-shaped metal pad. It catches my attention, and Iím struck by the level of detail.

      I am now Ė not sure in what order Ė both present in the dream and lucid. Iím in a park-like area, a clearing with groves of trees and some woods not far off. Another stage is nearby, this one a roofed circular platform on which sits another of those big electric basses. I consider giving it a try Ė that could be fun. But it occurs to me that Iíve never produced frightening scenarios in lucid dreams before, and I should try it at least once.

      Surrounded by demons is the first thing that occurs to me for some reason. Thatíll do. I will them into being. As I focus on the intention, everything around me grows dark, swirling and immaterial. Iím floating, moving vaguely backwards. But nothing else seems to be happening. Oh, well. Maybe Iíll give that bass a try after all.

      I let go of the intention. The original scene immediately returns, and I walk back towards the area I started out in. But not far from it, by a ridge in front of a forested area, I spot a strange figure. Its head looks like a skull, bovine in shape, with horns that curl around to the front and knot around each other, and itís wearing a black and white herringbone tweed blazer with a thin purple scarf and a long grey-black skirt. It looks like I managed something, at least, although I canít say itís especially scary.

      As I approach, it waves its hand, causing a small sphere of darkness to shoot towards me. This startles me a bit, but it doesnít seem to have any effect. I keep walking towards it, ignoring its attacks. As I pass the pavilion, I notice the instrument sitting there looks different now. There are also now a number of cats up under the roof, lying in big cat piles that seem to extend upward into tunnels. They seem to just be waking up. The grey and orange tabbies stay where they are, but a few black cats stretch and jump down onto the stage.

      As I turn back towards the figure, I see that it is now a cat as well Ė a small black one. I pick it up. It doesnít look happy with being held, but it makes no attempt to escape.

      At that point, I wake up.

      9.1.20
    4. Insistent Melody; The Centipug

      by , 03-13-2018 at 10:19 PM (The Fourth Factor)
      I'm lying in the middle of a dark room, trying to sleep. But itís not very comfortable there since I donít have a pillow or blankets or anything else except the (possibly carpeted) floor. As I lie there, a piece of music comes into my mindóďNight on Bald Mountain.Ē Itís not as if Iím thinking of it: rather itís as if itís pushing all the other thoughts out of my head until itís the only thing there, even though it's clearly in my head and not actually playing.

      It plays for a few bars, and then, just as the horn blasts the first note of the melody, I hear a loud crash from outside. A jolt of alarmóbut it lasts only for a moment. The noise I heard sounds just like the falling branch did a couple weeks ago, when the winds came through, and it seems likely to me that thatís what happened now. But I reflect that that was odd, about it matching the melodyóalmost as if, on some level, I knew the crash was going to happen in advance.

      Iím not sure what series of events came in between this and the next dream I can remember clearly, but my memory picks up shortly after attaining lucidity somehow. I step through a door out into a hallwayótile floors, completely bare, and several wooden doors, including one with a window in it at the end of the hall. Through the window, I can see some sort of colorful projection on the wall, like a screen. I head towards it and open the door.

      The room turns out to be a mid-sized lecture hall, with the seats and desks in a semicircular amphitheater arrangement. A few students are scattered throughout, and although there doesnít seem to be a teacher here, a PowerPoint presentation is going. It seems to be a presentation on poetry.

      An idea occurs to me: Iíll write down what I see and then try to record as much of it as I can in my dream journal once Iím awake. Granted, most of it looks like the sort of word salad you might except the subconscious mind on autopilot to kick out, but it could still be interesting. I forage around for something to write on but turn up with nothing but a pencil and some kind of treated animal skin, which is pretty far from ideal, but I figure I can try writing on the leathery side. I slip into a seat in the back row and start taking notes.

      I have a good half ďpageĒ or so written by the time I wake upówith no warning, as usual. But I find I canít remember any of itónot even the one line that actually seemed striking to me as I was recording it. The only thing I can remember from the whole presentation was the centipug (to give an appropriate name to it)óthe clipart-ish picture of a pug with many sets of legs that was at the bottom of one of the slides. Funny how that works.

      13.3.18