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    1. #1
      Bending Unit tiddlywink101's Avatar
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      Exclamation Dangers Of Lucid Dreaming?

      I have recently been thinking that perhaps Lucid Dreaming is not that good for our us and have put it on hold until somebody can shed some light upon my concerns.
      Firstly when I was awaking at 5am each to record my dreams I noticed a lack of concentration that day at school, leaving me thinking that it was because I had interrupted some vital process of the sleeping mind (I am only 15 so my brain is still developing)
      Secondly we have to train ourselves to LD thus breaking natural barriers in our mind that could be there to safeguard against dream lucidity, so surely it's not natural and may have harmful effects.
      Sorry if i'm talking rubbish here but if anyone understands me please share your thoughts. Also if your just starting out don't let this put you off trying to learn, as Lucid Dreaming is a very rewarding experience and PROBABLY not dangerous.
      Thanks
      Ninjas killed my family, need money for kung-fu lessons

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      Your second point is an interesting one. I once read an opinion on this and I remember agreeing with the authors point. From an evolutionary perspective, the fact that it's difficult to remember dreams and difficult to get lucid makes sense. Let's say you're a caveman. You have lucid dreams and you get used to the notion of frolicking around with a nice friendly T-Rex. During your wakeful hours, you might be inclined to do the same. What happens - he bites your head off and you don't get to spread your DNA. I would like to think we're sufficiently advanced from an evolutionary sense, to avoid this pitfall - certainly if you live in an industrialized country.

      The only practical danger I can think of is being over enthusiatic about jumping off buildings. Start from the ground - that's my guidance.

      As for the sleep conern, go to bed earlier. This will more than make up for any sleep interuptions - that should be an easy workaround.
      Adopted Namwan, 2/6/08 Chris31, 3/14/08

    3. #3
      Daydreamer Q-Melk's Avatar
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      As far as I see it, there is no reason to be afraid of lucid dreaming as long as you are able to distingush between dream and reality, and is of sound mental health otherwise. There has been a lot of scentific research on lucid dreaming, and there has never been shown any harmful effects of it for normal people as far as I can see (see Wikipedia on this).

      Lucid dreaming also has a rich tradition, spanning for thousands of years in certain other cultures (I can't think of a concrete example right now, but I've heard of older cultures, including tribal cultures, where dreaming, also lucid dreaming, has played an important role).

      DrTechnical mentioned an example of cavemen frolicking around with T-Rexs. First, this is not a problem as long as you can distingush between dreams and reality, and I don't think prehistorical people were worse off than us in this respect. Second, humans and dinosaurs have never lived at the same time. :p (I know, this was an unneccescarily point. But I just had to nitpick a little...)
      Last edited by Q-Melk; 05-23-2007 at 10:29 PM. Reason: Removed some text, think I misunderstood tiddlywink101 a little.

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      Assuming that we become lucid occasionaly, without any practice whatsoever, we must assume that there arren't any barriers. I've become lucid during my young years plenty of times.

      Also, think of the process. You are becomming lucid, which is, knowing that you're dreaming. When I dream, I'm always in control, though I may not be lucid.
      The only difference between normal dreaming and lucid dreaming, is that we gain more control. The actual awareness is always there, it's just more apparent for some than others.

      ---------
      Lost count of how many lucid dreams I've had
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    5. #5
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      I hope my point was sufficiently clear. Evolution has impacted human development in the sense that "dangerous" characteristics get weeded out. So a characteristic like great dream recall or great ability to become lucid in ones dreams in principle - may have been eliminated from the gene pool as it impacted survival in a dangerous environment.

      Comin full circle - most of us are not involved in many day to day situations where confusion between dream and wakeful states might lead to our demise. Hence LDing doesn't seem very dangerous in todays society.
      Adopted Namwan, 2/6/08 Chris31, 3/14/08

    6. #6
      Member Serith's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by tiddlywink101 View Post
      Firstly when I was awaking at 5am each to record my dreams I noticed a lack of concentration that day at school, leaving me thinking that it was because I had interrupted some vital process of the sleeping mind (I am only 15 so my brain is still developing)
      It only makes sense that if you're missing out on sleep, your mind won't work as well. It's unlikely to be the interruption of sleep that's the problem, since most people wake up in the middle of the night occasionally, so I suspect the problem is that you're not getting enough sleep. This isn't a danger from lucidity itself, just your dream journal habits, and will likely go away if you go to sleep earlier or write in your dream journal later.

      Quote Originally Posted by tiddlywink101 View Post
      Secondly we have to train ourselves to LD thus breaking natural barriers in our mind that could be there to safeguard against dream lucidity, so surely it's not natural and may have harmful effects.
      I have two points against this. First, many people occasionally lucid dream without any effort or training, I did occasionally, and some people LD all the time without ever even having heard of lucid dreaming. If lucid dreaming was innately harmful, wouldn't these people have these mental barriers too?

      Second, just because we have to train ourselves to do it, doesn't mean it's harmful. There are all sorts of things we have to train ourselves to do that we aren't naturally able to do that actually help the mind, like learning to play an instrument, read, use mental math, and many others. Who's to say that lucid dreaming isn't one of these? I don't see any reason at all to think the difficulty involved in lucid dreaming has to do with some sort of mental barrier, instead of simply being the normal difficulty involved in learning a difficult skill.

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      Well I believe that what DrTechnical is saying is true however i think that their are not really any dangers to lucid dreaming without actually causing the danger yourself, for example your having a lucid dream and you wish something evil into existence and you find it really scary and it starts re-occuring as nightmares, but that can be overcome if you start having nightmares, another is the effect it can have on your sleep patterns however really it is not lucid dreaming that is affecting your sleep patterns, it is you waking up early in the morning to try and induce a lucid dream. I personally cannot see any dangers that can accidently happen from lucid dreaming, all the bad things that come off lucid dreaming can only really be your fault or your descision but to be honest i can't find any problems with lucid dreaming, its a safe thing, your in total control of your environment. Any dangers within the lucid dream would be your responsibility unless soemthing came out of the blue, but still you could wish it out of existence. Don't be worried about lucid dreaming, just get into it and you'll see that it is a safe thing to do. Hope some of that helped.


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      There is nothing wrong, unnatuaral, or dangerous about Lucid Dreaming!
      If you actualy believe this, then Lucid Dreaming is probably not for you.
      But most likely, this belief would keep you from Lucid Dreaming in the first place. You should probably check out the information, on all of the good things that can come from Lucid Dreaming. And then decide if it's something
      you want to get into.

    9. #9
      Member SEBSTER's Avatar
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      Alright man, check it homes..
      If LDs were un-natural then it wouldn't be such a regular occurence. Lucid Dreaming was been around as long as the first records of science and literature! now the only reason we have to take months or even years of our own time and individually have to learn how to Lucid Dream is beacuse society has forgotten about dreams ya know? see it would be completely absurd if we all individually had to learn to write when society teaches us all together in a classroom. I guess all i could tell you is that if "Evolutionarily" Lucid Dreaming was a danger then generation after generation it would slowly be erased from our natural abilities.
      "..it's bad anough that you sell your waking life for minimum wage but no they get your dreams for free."

    10. #10
      I am become fish pear Abra's Avatar
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      Lucid dreaming, as the others have said, is a natural phenomenon. Nothing to be worried about.

      If you're worried about your sleep pattern, I suggest a consistent schedule of at least eight hours a night. If you have trouble getting back to bed after waking in the wee hours of the morn, try making your room darker, staying up at a shorter interval to write in your journal, and minimalizing movement.

      Quote Originally Posted by DrTechnical View Post
      Let's say you're a caveman. You have lucid dreams and you get used to the notion of frolicking around with a nice friendly T-Rex. During your wakeful hours, you might be inclined to do the same. What happens - he bites your head off and you don't get to spread your DNA.
      Erm, excuse me. Cavemen=Holocene epoch, T-Rex=Cretatious. Only a few hundred million years apart. It really bugs me. xD
      Abraxas

      Quote Originally Posted by OldSparta
      I murdered someone, there was bloody everywhere. On the walls, on my hands. The air smelled metallic, like iron. My mouth... tasted metallic, like iron. The floor was metallic, probably iron

    11. #11
      dsr
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      DrTechnical, your solid grasp of natural selection and your screen name on this forum suggest that you are well-versed in the principles of science. As stated by others, please don't confuse the Mesozoic and Cenozoic Eras. Paleolithic man didn't enter the picture until at least 60 million years after the extinction of Tyrannosaurus rex.

      Quote Originally Posted by DrTechnical
      From an evolutionary perspective, the fact that it's difficult to remember dreams and difficult to get lucid makes sense.
      It's not a fact that dreams are difficult to remember. When I was a little boy, I remembered around five dreams per night without any difficulty. Also, many people claim to lucid dream naturally. I myself had occasional LDs, generally induced by nightmares, when I was much younger. Also, Tibetan monks have been practicing "dream yoga" (a form of lucid dreaming induced by critical state testing) throughout the last millenium. That being said, dreams do seem to be stored in a fairly protected part of the mind.

      I don't believe anyone has ever presented any evidence of lucid dreaming being physically or mentally harmful. However, I do see the possibility for lucid dreaming to increase one's risk of schizophrenia if he or she had incredibly vivid LDs almost every night. This is an interesting thread, and I wonder if scientific evidence will come out that suggests lucid dreaming to be potentially dangerous.

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      Boy you guys are sticklers for precise examples, I'll have to research dangerous animals that co-existed with cavemen next time around.
      BTW, dreams most certainly are difficult to remember. Everyone of us (given a nice 8 hours of sleep) spends about 2 hours + in REM. Can any one of us claim to remember 2 hours of dream experience per night? If you claim yes, I'll bet you're confused by the disjoint nature of dream storylines, where an instantaneous jump from day to night makes you feel like 12 hours transpired. I feel I have decent dream recall. I typically recall about two pages of written notes and 2-3 dreams per evening. But that most certainly is NOT 2 - 2.5 hours of effective experience.
      Adopted Namwan, 2/6/08 Chris31, 3/14/08

    13. #13
      !DIREKTOR! Adam's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by tiddlywink101 View Post
      Secondly we have to train ourselves to LD thus breaking natural barriers in our mind that could be there to safeguard against dream lucidity, so surely it's not natural and may have harmful effects.
      Not true (in my opinion) since I naturally LD. I didn't know about all this training to LD and RC's and DC's etc etc until I found this site about 5 months ago.

      I have been able to LD for as long as I can remember and I have turned out just fine lol.

      I understand your concearns though, and like many others believe this is due to a lack of your understanding on the subject. I would suggest reading up a little more on it, reading journals and experiences and I'm sure all you will ever read are positive things said about lucid dreaming

    14. #14
      Look away wendylove's Avatar
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      Lucid dreaming also has a rich tradition, spanning for thousands of years in certain other cultures (I can't think of a concrete example right now, but I've heard of older cultures, including tribal cultures, where dreaming, also lucid dreaming, has played an important role).
      Their is no recorded histories of other people lucid dreaming, only buddhist have explored this in the past. Their are some vague refrences in the bible apart from that nothing.
      If LDs were un-natural then it wouldn't be such a regular occurence. Lucid Dreaming was been around as long as the first records of science and literature!
      Well were is you're source.
      I guess all i could tell you is that if "Evolutionarily" Lucid Dreaming was a danger then generation after generation it would slowly be erased from our natural abilities.
      Recessive trait do survive look at all the cancers and genetic diseases that heavily damage a person.
      I feel I have decent dream recall. I typically recall about two pages of written notes and 2-3 dreams per evening. But that most certainly is NOT 2 - 2.5 hours of effective experience.
      We actually dream all night, however thats abit different. Memory is shifted and stored so you only have you're short term memory active or working memory. I remeber studies that wake people up during Non-REM and the person remebered the dream in it, I think Non-REM dreams are mean't to be less vivid.

      The problem with lucid dreaming is proberly because this level of consciousness found in humans are higher then other animals. It would take time for humans to evolve into having more lucid dreams like how it took time for animals to evolve to have REM sleep. Evolution is not perfect. As far as lucid dreaming I think the Bottlenose whale has us beat. It has one hemisphere always conscious.

      I heard our brains are getting smaller.
      Last edited by wendylove; 05-24-2007 at 02:35 PM.

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      WendyLove raises an interesting scenario. One I claim to have no expertise in - so if someone here genuinely does please share.
      The claim is that waking a dreamer out of NREM can lead to a scenario where that person remembers a dream. I certainly believe that for the REM scenario - but NMREM?
      To believe that theory - you need to disprove counter arguements. Here's a counter agrument:
      Let's say a person has a REM period and a number of superficial awakenings during that time. The memories of that dream are "imprinted" in the mind. Commonly, a person experiencing a superficial awakening might turn over, grunt or even have a brief conversation with their partner - but won't remember that event.
      Now let's say time moves to a NREM cycle and you forceably awake the sleeper. Might the dream memories that person reports be a capture of a dream memory from the previous REM cycle?
      That would be my intuitive explaination. I'm not sure how you prove or disprove it?
      Adopted Namwan, 2/6/08 Chris31, 3/14/08

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      Quote Originally Posted by Marvo View Post
      Assuming that we become lucid occasionaly, without any practice whatsoever, we must assume that there arren't any barriers. I've become lucid during my young years plenty of times.

      Also, think of the process. You are becomming lucid, which is, knowing that you're dreaming. When I dream, I'm always in control, though I may not be lucid.
      The only difference between normal dreaming and lucid dreaming, is that we gain more control. The actual awareness is always there, it's just more apparent for some than others.
      Erm, do you mean that your SUBCONCIOUS has control when you aren't lucid? Because, i NEVER have control when i'm not lucid, it is just like watching a tv show.

      Quote Originally Posted by Abra View Post
      Lucid dreaming, as the others have said, is a natural phenomenon. Nothing to be worried about.

      If you're worried about your sleep pattern, I suggest a consistent schedule of at least eight hours a night. If you have trouble getting back to bed after waking in the wee hours of the morn, try making your room darker, staying up at a shorter interval to write in your journal, and minimalizing movement.


      Erm, excuse me. Cavemen=Holocene epoch, T-Rex=Cretatious. Only a few hundred million years apart. It really bugs me. xD
      XD The cretacious was 65Million years ago!

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      I'm always in control, when I dream. Conscious control. However, I'm rarely aware, that I'm dreaming.

      I guess I could use this, to get more lucid-dreams, but I haven't really found a way.

      ---------
      Lost count of how many lucid dreams I've had
      ---------

    18. #18
      Look away wendylove's Avatar
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      However, the sharp division between REM (‘dreaming’) sleep and non-REM (‘non-dreaming’) sleep began to fray when it was discovered that reports of complex mentation could, in fact, be elicited in as many as 50% of awakenings from non-REM sleep. This became apparent when Foulkes awakened subjects from non-REM sleep and asked them, ‘What was passing through your mind?’ rather than, ‘Have you been dreaming?’ (Foulkes, 1962). The resultant non-REM dream reports were more ‘thought-like’ (less vivid) than the REM dream reports but this distinction held only for the statistical average. The fact remained that at least 5-10% of non-REM dream reports were ‘indistinguishable by any criterion from those obtained from post-REM awakenings’ (Hobson, 1988, p143). These findings ‘do not support a dichotomic distinction between REM and NREM mentation, rather they suggest the hypothesis of the existence of continuous dream processing characterised by a variability within and between sleep stages’ (Cavallero et al, 1992, p563).
      http://www.psychoanalysis.org.uk/solms4.htm
      If you didn't read all that it says we dream all night. Also the problem is solved by waking the person up during the first sleep stage after a normal day.
      Last edited by wendylove; 05-24-2007 at 05:29 PM.

    19. #19
      Bending Unit tiddlywink101's Avatar
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      But are we not interupting any vital sleep processes? For example I have heard that people can become very irritable during the day if forcefully woken up during REM sleep.
      Thanks for taking interest in my thread
      Ninjas killed my family, need money for kung-fu lessons

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      I've noticed that since I started LDing I find it harder and harder to distinguish from dreams and reality. I have strong feelings of unreality when I'm awake, like I'm kind of disconnected from the world. This is why I've stopped I guess, it's quite scary...

      Are you having a holy moment?

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      Tiddlywink, no. Unless we're practicing lucid-dreaming to much, that we only get below 5 hours of sleep, we'll be fine.

      There's no difference between dreaming and lucid-dreaming, except that we know we're dreaming. We must be aware when dreaming, otherwise, we wouldn't be able to remember our dreams. That's atleast what I think.

      Meidi, reality-checks, reality-checks, reality-checks. That's why we made them. To define if we're dreaming or not.

      ---------
      Lost count of how many lucid dreams I've had
      ---------

    22. #22
      dsr
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      Marvo, reality checks are meant to let you know if you are dreaming when you are dreaming. They are not meant to let you know if you are dreaming when you are awake. When you are awake, you should never have any question about it. The only reason to perform reality checks when you are awake is to form a habit that you will follow when dreaming. Meidi has indicated that he or she was developing a serious medical problem from lucid dreaming, and he or she definitely made the right decision to stop. So to address the question of the OP, schizophrenia seems to be the one realistic danger of lucid dreaming.

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      Umm.. ROTFLMAO! You CAN'T tell when you are dreaming *facepalms* that is the POINT of RC's. DUH!:p

    24. #24
      dsr
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      Seismosaur, Meidi can't tell when (s)he is awake. Read my last post. If you have to resort to RCs to make sure that you are awake (when in fact you are), that is, if you have trouble distinguishing between fantasy and reality, lucid dreaming is certainly not for you and you should probably consider seeking medical help. This misconception that RCs are for times when you want to make sure you are awake is very dangerous.

      Meidi, it's a good thing that you stopped lucid dreaming. Do you still get these symptoms often?

    25. #25
      Member Lonewolf's Avatar
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      Yea for the first point, that obviouslt just means you are not getting enough sleep. You don't need to wake yourself up all throughout the night to record every little dream in order to have a lucid dream. You just need to recall at least one.

      For the second point I think that it may be beneficial thinking about lucid dreaming and doing reality checks throughout the day. I teaches you to be mindful and live in the present. Every self-help I've ever read always mentioned the importance of mindfulness. When you are in the present you fully take in each moment. Even better when those things lead you to become aware in a dream and then you can further use the dream for self improvement like overcoming fears and raising your self esteem.

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