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The Art Of Lucid Dreaming And Its Therapeuadic Qualities

1214 words - 5 pages

Most people dream, typically four or five times per night. Memory of dreams differs according to the individual, with some people having excellent dream recall, many people remembering only partially, and some people being unable to recall any dreams at all. Have you ever had a dream where you mentally woke up inside the dream, and knew you were still dreaming? Many people have had this experience, yet few realize that this unique state of consciousness may hold the key as a valuable tool for a number of essential uses.The Dutch psychiatrist Fredrik Van Eeden first used the term "Lucid Dreaming" in 1913 in order to describe when a person is in the dream world, and consciously knows that they are dreaming. This altered state of consciousness allows a person to be free of mortal restrictions, and to experience sensations with extreme vividness. Thee major difference is that the dreamer is aware that he or she is dreaming, and is able to consider choices, make decisions and effectively control the course of the dream.Occasionally, these dreams can feel more genuine than real life itself. "This time I stop to notice the vividness of being awake in a dream. I stopped to feel the grass and rip up a few shreds and it feels real. I notice I'm barefoot as I walk through an icy cool puddle of water" (Trancewave). The imagery in lucid dreaming appears much more real than creative visualization or normal imagination, allowing us to experience highly realistic "simulations" of reality, without any of the associated risks. Before going into details on how lucid dreams can help a person both mentally and physically, it must be established that this type of dreaming does exist. During the Rapid Eye Movement Stage (REM) of sleep, one experiences the most vivid dreams. It is here that they do a Reality Check, some sort of confirmation that they are truly in a dream, and go into the lucid state. Only a select 58% of the world's population has experienced a lucid dream in their lifetime, and only 21% report that they have more than one lucid dream per month. Some scientists try to disprove that lucid dreaming even exists; they try to claim that it is impossible. They believe that ff one were to realize that they are currently in a dream they would awaken immediately. "If people doubt lucid dreams they do so because they have never experienced one" (MacKean). Lucid dreaming is an effective tool for children who have chronic nightmares. If the child were to learn how to do Reality Checks and understand that they are currently dreaming, they can empower themselves in order to conquer their fears of nightmares. It is mentally possible to alter one's dreams (people are not able to have complete control of their dream, but they are able to influence or ease it in a different direction), so with practice a child with nightmares can simply change the scenery of their dream or confront their fears. But, this technique is best to be used while children are still...

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