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    Thread: can we map out the dream world

    1. #1
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      can we map out the dream world

      so i saw great group of guys on reddit talking about creating a map of the dream world yes maybe it is infinite maybe a new chunk of the world is created every day when we imagine it in dreams so we can conduct experiments to know that

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      I have done something similar. I have a sort of video game like visualization that I can walk around in the dreamscape. The only thing is that I created it before I went there in my dreams. So I sort of created my dreamworld rather than recreated it.
      The only rules to your dreamscape are the ones you create.

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      Why not?? It sounds like it could be fun!!

      I've seen a map someone made of the dream-realm H.P. Lovecraft described in his dream cycle books:


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      This kind of thing is referred to as a Wonderland - some people have reported being able to revisit and continue where they left off in developing their dream world. Mapping my dreams out is how I get the level design ideas for my video games. Lots of interesting potential for this kind of thing, and I bet it helps pretty nicely in developing all of the skills involved in LDing, such as dream control, recall, etc.

      If you happen to sit down and sketch out some ideas, please do share

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      I think I prefer to be the explorer with no maps lost in my own mind with wonder surprise and delight at all the new places and sights that I see. I'd hate to have my dream world become mundane and unchanging enough that a map could have any purpose or use to be honest.

      So far at least I've not gotten lost as I keep waking up and finding myself right back where I started from.

    6. #6
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      Oh this is such a cool idea. There have been many dreams I've noticed that have a repeat setting - it's almost eerie! What's weird about this is that certain aspects will change (it's a work setting, it's my high school, etc.), but the shapes of the area/buildings, and overall locale is the same. It's so weird.

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      Quote Originally Posted by ahmedoy View Post
      so i saw great group of guys on reddit talking about creating a map of the dream world yes maybe it is infinite maybe a new chunk of the world is created every day when we imagine it in dreams so we can conduct experiments to know that
      I'm definitely interested in experimenting with this. Dream cartography is currently one of my main LD goals. One of the things I noticed in my dreams is that recurring locations seem to connect to other dream locations in a seemingly predictable way and I wanted to test how reliable these connections actually are. Some of that could be done through analyzing old records and perhaps the use of spreadsheets (yay, my favorite!) I was also interested in what happens if I exit a recurring location in a direction that I've never gone before in a dream. I got to test out the latter question once, so far, in a brief lucid dream a while back:

      I was at my old elementary school and realized I was dreaming after an RC. I managed to recall my goal of exploring different connections between dream locations and I knew that I'd only taken three of the five possible exits from this location in dreams (the dream version of the school mapped pretty accurately onto the waking life version). I intentionally chose a new direction to see where it would lead. Almost immediately, I found myself in a completely white space with nothing to be seen in any direction. I walked until I saw a bench, approached it and studied its details. Soon a bus stop formed, streets, and an entire city I'd never seen before. A car pulled up and a couple random DCs wanted me to get inside. At first I was suspicious of them, but then I decided it couldn't hurt any since it was a dream. Unfortunately I lost lucidity as I got pulled fully into the plot.


      Quote Originally Posted by MoonageDaydream View Post
      Oh this is such a cool idea. There have been many dreams I've noticed that have a repeat setting - it's almost eerie! What's weird about this is that certain aspects will change (it's a work setting, it's my high school, etc.), but the shapes of the area/buildings, and overall locale is the same. It's so weird.
      Yes, I've noticed the same thing, where the same location has different "versions". What's even stranger is when the same version recurrs. It seems particularly noticible with common waking life locations.

      I'm wondering if this might have something to do with our mental conceptions of places over time. For instance, my house looked much bigger to me when I was a little kid and there was more of a "looking up at things" perspective - my dreams at that age reflected this and even as an adult I'll sometimes find myself in that same exact version of my house. Or with my old college; there's one dream version that corresponds to when I first started attending that school and hadn't fully explored the campus. In the dream, the campus was far larger, had distorted features, and there were sections of it that don't exist in waking life. For instance, if I went a certain direction I'd end up in a field at the top of a hill. This field doesn't exist in waking life, nor does the hill, but I've revisited it many times in non-lucid dreams when I happen to be in that particular version of the college. In contrast, later dream versions map almost exactly onto the waking life campus, as I eventually got to know the campus thoroughly.

      This raises some interesting possibilities, I think. For instance, I know exactly how to get to that college campus in waking life, which makes it easily accesible from many common dream locations that mirror waking life. On the other hand, that element of "uncertainty" around the edges of campus that haven't been explored allows for the creation of new features. Based on my records, I guess a normal dream will just fill in the "unknowns" with something random (like that field), but in an LD, one could deliberately create a new, consciously constructed location and attach it to a convenient, recurring dream location. I wonder if that consciously created location would automatically show up again in future dreams, lucid or not? And if there's an advantage to attaching it to an existing location in this way versus using another method to get back there such as teleporting?
      "When you see the shadows falling,
      When you hear that cold wind calling,
      Hold on tight to your dream."
      -ELO

    8. #8
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      Quote Originally Posted by nautilus View Post
      On the other hand, that element of "uncertainty" around the edges of campus that haven't been explored allows for the creation of new features. Based on my records, I guess a normal dream will just fill in the "unknowns" with something random (like that field), but in an LD, one could deliberately create a new, consciously constructed location and attach it to a convenient, recurring dream location. I wonder if that consciously created location would automatically show up again in future dreams, lucid or not? And if there's an advantage to attaching it to an existing location in this way versus using another method to get back there such as teleporting?
      I'm not sure about that. With some locations, I've never been there before in waking life, and yet, the dream location repeats, with the same features. I wouldn't be surprised if the locations of the college you had not explored are not like the college necessarily, but... may be consistent with your dream world. As in, you will have the same map, with the same "random" feature, over and over.
      nautilus likes this.

    9. #9
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      Quote Originally Posted by MoonageDaydream View Post
      I'm not sure about that. With some locations, I've never been there before in waking life, and yet, the dream location repeats, with the same features. I wouldn't be surprised if the locations of the college you had not explored are not like the college necessarily, but... may be consistent with your dream world. As in, you will have the same map, with the same "random" feature, over and over.
      I think you're right about the map being consistent within the dreamworld. What I meant by uncertainty around the edges, in this case, is that my dream seemed to reproduce the parts of the campus I'd already explored early on in waking life (granted, with some distortions), but then when I was dreaming and wandered past the bounds of my WL explored area, there's an element of uncertainty about what's there, so my dream filled it in based on... who knows what, but it's no longer based on my experience IWL. I didn't get too far into the "recurs in dreams but never been there in waking life" locations, but I definitely have a bunch of those as well. Some of those locations are pretty mystical in nature, while others seem more "realistic" in the sense that they could more believably fit in adjacent to the waking life inspired locations. The field attached to one version of the WL college campus is an example of the latter; it isn't there IWL but it consistently appears in that particular version of the dream campus. Interestingly, it's nowhere to be found in subsequent versions of the dream campus that first began appearing years later. Instead, the buildings that exist IWL appear in its place.

      Which brings up more questions about how to, for instance, get to a place that only exists in the parallel version of a dream location. How are different versions of the same location related to one other, psychologically, symbolically, cartographically, etc? What might trigger one version in a non lucid versus another, or is the exact version not pinned down until the dream plot takes me into a certain area? I'm actually leaning towards one version of a dream map being pretty consistent start to finish for a dream with smooth, walking from place to place style transitions. In part that's because I can actually recognize distinct feelings that accompany a specific version, a primary orientation to the overall map, a local point of focus, sometimes a time of day, and even themes to the type of dream plot that occurs. Side note, I wonder if there are any correlations between a person's waking life events and the creation of a new, distinct version of a recurring dream location. Like a branch point.

      I'm particularly interested in instances where waking life inspired locations connect to those dreamworld only type locations because, and I could be wrong, but it seems like WL inspired places most often connect to other WL inspired places, so the exceptions stand out. It sort of makes sense that this would be the case, because I've automatically mapped out a lot of those places IWL so it's no surprise that's reflected in dreams. I'm also really curious about how I get to the more magical seeming locations in non LDs, because mostly I remember getting there from another strange place or there's a blurry, vague transition with little continuity. Occasionally I'll go from one of those strange places back to my house, for instance, but it's usually through "magical" means such as a portal. And that's in non LDs, in lucids I've tended to rely on either flying or creating a door portal to get to new places, with the exception of that one lucid I described where I experimented. I feel like it would be a different experience to, say, walk out your door and make the back yard pool of your neighbor two houses down lead directly to Atlantis during an LD, and then that becomes a new permanent feature of the map, lucid or not.


      Haha, I guess I have a lot of questions around this topic, that's not even half of them I'd love to hear more about people's experiences with their own dream maps and recurring locations, too. I have more questions than personal experience at this point. And I wonder how we could design one or more experiments or studies around dream cartography? For one thing, I'm assuming we'd want to make a distinction between research derived from non lucid dreams where the dream map is already "pre generated" so to speak versus lucids where you potentially have more of a direct, conscious impact on the landscape. In fact, you could technically just teleport to anywhere you choose in the blink of an eye in an LD, regardless of the dream map structure or whether you've been to the place before or not, provided you have the dream control to do it. But then that probably wouldn't tell you much about the dream map as it relates to your starting point.
      MoonageDaydream likes this.
      "When you see the shadows falling,
      When you hear that cold wind calling,
      Hold on tight to your dream."
      -ELO

    10. #10
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      I've done this. Here's my map.
      dreamcartography2001-1.jpg

    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by Queen Zukin View Post
      I've done this. Here's my map.
      dreamcartography2001-1.jpg
      Cool. I like how you do it by biome. That makes sense.
      Queen Zukin likes this.

    12. #12
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      Quote Originally Posted by MoonageDaydream View Post
      Cool. I like how you do it by biome. That makes sense.
      You kind of just have to do what feels right. This is from about 10 years ago, so unfortunately it wouldn't be comparable to my map today. A lot of times you don't have any other way to arrange these pieces until you learn more information, which may or may not ever happen...lol

    13. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by Queen Zukin View Post
      You kind of just have to do what feels right. This is from about 10 years ago, so unfortunately it wouldn't be comparable to my map today. A lot of times you don't have any other way to arrange these pieces until you learn more information, which may or may not ever happen...lol
      Awesome map! May I ask what The Divide is? I was considering creating a digital vector map for mine, that way the positioning could be adjusted periodically without losing track of the connections between locations.
      "When you see the shadows falling,
      When you hear that cold wind calling,
      Hold on tight to your dream."
      -ELO

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