• Lucid Dreaming - Dream Views




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    1. #1
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      Chapter 2: History

      CH 2 – History



      [Introduction] -Now that you have a basic understanding of the fundamentals of lucid dreaming, let’s look at how it has played a part in history.

      [Augustine letter] - Probably one of the most well known anecdotal accounts of lucid dreaming came in 415 A.D., when St. Augustine wrote to Evodius, his brother, about some strange dreams that Gennadius, another brother, had had over the course of two consecutive nights. In the first of these dreams, a young guide came to Gennadius and showed him a city in which exceedingly beautiful music unlike anything he had ever heard (“The Hymn of the Blessed and Holy” as it was referred to by the guide) was being played. He woke, and though no doubt perplexed, shrugged it off as an interesting dream and nothing more.
      On the second night, however, things got undeniably more unusual. This same youthful guide came to Gennadius and asked if he remembered him, and if so, where they had met. Gennadius quickly and confidently replied with a detailed narration of the past night’s encounter. Here is an excerpt from the letter showing what then transpired:

      “On this the youth inquired whether it was in sleep or when awake that he had seen what he had just narrated. Gennadius answered: "In sleep." The youth then said: "You remember it well; it is true that you saw these things in sleep, but I would have you know that even now you are seeing in sleep." Hearing this, Gennadius was persuaded of its truth, and in his reply declared that he believed it. Then his teacher went on to say: "Where is your body now?" He answered: "In my bed." "Do you know," said the youth, "that the eyes in this body of yours are now bound and closed, and at rest, and that with these eyes you are seeing nothing?" He answered: "I know it." "What, then," said the youth, "are the eyes with which you see me?" He, unable to discover what to answer to this, was silent. While he hesitated, the youth unfolded to him what he was endeavoring to teach him by these questions, and immediately said: "As while you are asleep and lying on your bed these eyes of your body are now unemployed and doing nothing, and yet you have eyes with which you behold me, and enjoy this vision, so, after your death, while your bodily eyes shall be wholly inactive, there shall be in you a life by which you shall still live, and a faculty of perception by which you shall still perceive. Beware, therefore, after this of harboring doubts as to whether the life of man shall continue after death."”

      Bear in mind that this was after a period of Gennadius doubting his faith in the afterlife. It goes almost without saying then that both Gennadius and St. Augustine saw this as a sign from god, helping to reassure him that life does indeed go on after our physical death. Actually, lucid dreaming being seen as a spiritual occurrence or practice is not uncommon in its history. In fact many cultures in many times and places have seen it this way.

      [Dream yoga and Tibetan monks] – For example, the “Bardo Thodol” (Tibetan Book of the Dead in English) was written in the 8th century A.D. by Padma Sambhava, a Buddhist monk. In it, Sambhava speaks of what is known as “Dream Yoga”. In Dream Yoga, you attempt to attain full consciousness in the dream state with the intent of exploration, communication with dream characters believed by the Tibetan Buddhist Dream Yoga practitioners to be sentient beings, and spiritual development. The actual techniques used to do this are very similar to what non-yogic lucid dreamers use today, and include becoming aware of what it feels like to be conscious, and improving dream recollection.

      [Castaneda] – Don Juan - a Yaqui shaman written about by Carlos Castaneda in a series of immensely popular books published from the late 60’s up through the 90’s - also saw lucid dreaming as a very spiritual practice. It was Don Juan’s belief that there are seven “Gates of Dreaming” that one must pass through before attaining “total awareness”. There are four Gates listed in the book “The Art of Dreaming”. These gates are as follows:

      1. “Arrived at when one perceives one's hands in a dream. Solved when one is able to shift the focus from the hands to another dream object and return it to the hands, all repeated a few times. Crossed when one is able to induce a state of darkness and a feeling of increased weight while falling asleep.”
      2. “Arrived at when one's dream objects start changing into something else. Solved when one is able to isolate a Scout and follow it to the realm of Inorganic Beings. Crossed when one is able to fall asleep without losing consciousness.It is also referred to the activity of dreaming together with other practitioners.”
      3. “Arrived at when one dreams of looking at oneself. Solved when the dreaming and physical bodies become one. Crossed when one is able to control the Dreaming Emissary.”
      4. “Arrived at when one is able to perceive the energetic essence of every dream item. Solved when one falls asleep in a dream, in the same position in which one has gone to sleep. Crossed when one wakes up in this reality, located only not in the physical but in the energy body.”
      (Cite Wikipedia)

      He also believed that changing the way you behave in dreams changes the way you behave in waking life, even to the extent of changing one’s death. It is worth noting that the existence of Don Juan has been disputed by many for quite some time.

      [LaBerge and ETWOLD]

      [Islam]

      [Biblical Accounts of prophetic dreams and Egyptian oracles] / Maybe

      [Frederick van Eeden's A Study of Dreams]

      [History of Sleep Paralysis]

      [http://dreamstudies.org/articles/his...enlightenment]

      [Lucid Dreaming in movies, music, and other media]

    2. #2
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      I think this chapter could stand to be lengthened quite a bit. There is still a lot to be said about the history of dreaming and lucid dreaming. Robert Moss recently wrote an entire book on this subject alone. I may buy it and use it as an additional reference here.

      The rest of the stuff in brackets is great stuff to include. Just needs to be finished.
      Last edited by Naiya; 12-31-2009 at 04:15 AM.

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