“Merrily merrily merrily merrily, life is but a dream.”
So goes the nursery rhyme we all absentmindedly sang in elementary school, when our young minds were still in the theta wave state, deeply impressionable and thus receptive to even the most complex concepts. This song was a gift in disguise. We just didn’t realize how lucky we were to be singing it.
On one hand, songs are very efficient information delivery systems, due to their direct influence on the subconscious mind. On the other hand, this direct injection of knowledge into the subconscious renders it “forgotten” as soon as it’s learned. For this reason, despite the many reminders that “Life is but a dream” we’ve continued receiving as adults, the truth of this statement remains largely under-investigated.
Only a handful of humans on Earth (or as I like to call it, Urf — because I think this place is just too hilarious to be real) has made the decision to become DreamWalkers. A DreamWalker is someone who bridges the DreamTime to the Waking World using their consciousness. In other words, they’re able to “walk between worlds,” constantly maintaining awareness of both realms at once. And though I say “both” out of rhetorical necessity, they are actually one and the same, as you will soon remember.
If this already sounds crazy to you, brace yourself, because it gets crazier:
Becoming a DreamWalker is incredibly simple.
In fact, the reason you tell yourself that “Life is but a dream” is only a metaphor to protect your ego from the sheer insanity of finding out it’s not a metaphor at all. You wish it was. (Why do you wish that? What are you so afraid of?)
You can test it for yourself using the guide below. This process may take a few months or years, so consistency is key. But before you begin, a fair warning:
Once you open this door, there’s no closing it.
Understand that “Life is but a dream” is not simply a poetic metaphor, but a literal fact.
To integrate this knowledge into your conscious mind, first, you must quit calling your current mode of awareness “real life.” This is Waking Life. And it’s just as real as Dream Life.
Waking, Dreaming, Waking, Dreaming….
Got that? Good. Let’s continue.
Familiarize yourself with methods of inducing lucidity (or awareness) in the Dreaming. I’ll break this part down into sub-steps:
- Write your dreams down every morning as soon as you wake up. This is the easiest and most crucial step to becoming lucid in dreams. If you don’t remember the dream upon waking, you must still write something in your dream journal immediately, in order to reinforce the muscle memory. Your dream memory retention will increase dramatically from this step alone.
- Set an alarm on your phone to go off at random intervals throughout your Waking time. This will be your ReMinder.
- Whenever you hear your ReMinder sound, do a Reality Check. Count your fingers — do you have 10? Open the nearest book — are the words legible? Look at yourself in the mirror — is that your face?
- Once you’ve done your Reality Check, say something like “I’m dreaming right now and I can control it.” Hold that thought until you actually believe you’re lucid in a dream. Doing this regularly will train your brain to start “Reality Checking” in the Dreaming as well.
- Once you start seeing 11 fingers, or jumbled words in books, or someone else’s face in the mirror, etc…. you’ll know you’re Dreaming.
- Proceed to control your dream however you’d like. You can have astral sex, fly on a dragon’s back, do parkour on mountaintops…
It’s your dream, so make it a good one.
Note: Quality sleep is crucial to this step. So if you have trouble sleeping, I suggest you get in touch with my very good friends Lavender, Valerian, Kava Kava, and Blue Lotus. They are excellent guides through this process, each with a different personality and unique effect on your dreams. Avoid marijuana, as it can inhibit deep REM sleep. Also, I highly recommend using a lucidity training app on your phone, like Awoken.
If you’re lucky enough to have lucid dreamer friends, plan co-dreaming experiences:
In the Waking, decide where you’d like to meet, but don’t tell each other what you intend to do when you get there. (For example, you might plan to dance around waving a banana in the air. Keep this to yourself.) Dream accordingly. When you’re back in the Waking, write down the Dream in as much detail as you can recall, with special attention given to what you witnessed your friends doing in your dream meeting spot. Then compare notes.
You will most likely discover (with great horror, for some of you) that you and your friends had the same exact dream. Congratulations, you have “woken up” to the fact that the Dream Plane is, indeed, a collective realm. This means you can literally walk right into someone else’s dream — hence the term Dream-Walker.
Yes, I know what you’re thinking: ~LiKe iN tHe MoViE iNcEpTiOn~
Do you think Inception invented DreamWalking? This practice I’m sharing with you is as ancient as ancient gets. (And if you thought Inception was esoteric, just wait till you see the Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.)
If you don’t have lucid dreamer friends, that’s cool. You can visit just about any lucid dreaming forum & read countless threads wherein groups of advanced lucid dreamers go on dream missions together. That is, if you still need evidence that the Dreaming is a real place… and not just a figment of your individual ego.
Anywho. Moving along!
Now that you’ve established becoming awake while dreaming, you need to do the inverse: dreaming while awake.
Continue doing your Reality Checks while in the Waking, but with a twist. Even after counting 10 fingers, or seeing your own face in the mirror, or whatever you’d usually do to “confirm” that you’re “awake,” tell yourself you’re dreaming. Imagine very strongly that you’re as free and unlimited as you are in the Dreaming. You might even go as far as to pretend that you actually counted 11 fingers or that your reflection isn’t yours.
The goal here is to slowly warp your perception until the Waking feels as strange and ethereal as the Dreaming does.
Eventually, this will begin to happen without your conscious effort. You will feel phantasmic, like you’re floating through your days. You’ll notice a glow emanating from objects, or perhaps a weird lag in the motion of things. Maybe when you run, you feel like you’re running through syrup. Maybe when someone looks at you, their eyes look bigger than usual. Maybe when you talk, your voice sounds like it’s underwater.
This is all totally normal.
You’re doing fine.
Do not be afraid.
After enough time, your conscious awareness will begin to transition seamlessly between Waking and Dreaming, so that Reality Checks may no longer become necessary to trigger lucidity. You may begin to experience “24-hour lucidity” with no loss of memory between Waking and Dreaming. In fact, you may have more and more difficulty discerning which mode of perception you’re in at any given moment. If you’re serious about becoming a DreamWalker, this is the ideal state to be in. You’re on the right track.
I suppose I’m ethically obligated to tell you that this part of your DreamWalker training has potential hazards, and you should ~be careful while driving or operating heavy machinery~ or whatever.
But as you learned from your lucid dreaming practice, whether you have a good dream or a nightmare depends entirely on how well you control your thoughts.
Remember, it’s all your dream. Make it a good one.
Now that you’ve built the bridge between worlds, it’s time to walk across it.
Enter the Dreaming, and hide a very specific object in a very specific place.
Make sure both the object and the hiding spot are genuinely unusual, and that they don’t “match” in a conventional sense. This is to ensure that you can’t “explain away” what you’re about to experience.
For example, you might choose to hide a brightly colored heart-shaped sea shell under a tree in the woods. Or you might hide a bronze coin inside of a muffin at your local bakery.
After you’ve hidden the object, set the strong intention to find the object in the Waking.
Enter the Waking, and go find the object.
You will find it in the Waking where you hid it in the Dream.
See it, feel it, touch it, taste it.
It’s real. It’s real. It’s real.
Welcome to the point of no return.
There’s no more denying it anymore: Reality was always yours to determine.
And now you must ask yourself
why you have chosen not to know this
why you have so long pretended to see a divide, a veil, severing your consciousness from itself
why you have encouraged others to do the same
why you’ve trapped them in nightmares of your own design
why you’ve limited them with cold logic and gross materialism,
when they — when you — could have been free all along.
Forgive yourself for every nightmare you’ve ever created.
Go forth and dream a merry dream.