My most recent lucid dream happened a few weeks ago, when I found myself on an unfamiliar balcony: aware I was dreaming, I carefully examined the setting of the dream, attempting to impress it on my memory, even running my hands over the adobe-colored stucco walls, touching the smooth brass railings – and then slipped back into full immersion, forgetting I was dreaming until the morning, when I scribbled the dream in my journal.
Exactly one week later, visiting a different city to see a production of Hamilton, had a wonderful moment in a hotel where I’d never stayed before when I recognized the balcony outside my room – right down to the feel of the texture of the adobe-colored stucco walls, the thick, round brass railings, and the view . . .
As mentioned in another thread, I’ve recorded over a thousand dreams in dedicated journals the past three decades. As a result, just about every configuration possible has appeared in my dream journals, including dreams within dreams (waking up from a dream only to find one is still dreaming), dreams where I am more than one character at a time (one where I was six people at the same moment, some in different rooms interacting with different people – very trippy experience that challenged my perception of individual consciousness), dreams where I am a different gender, and, of course, countless instances of being awake within a dream.
I don’t seek out those lucid dreaming experiences, and don’t do anything particular with them different from any other dream when they occur. But beyond anecdotal evidence, there is a growing body of research devoted to lucid dreaming. Frankly, I have had a less than favorable opinion of those who focused on being conscious while dreaming, assuming the idea is to control and direct the dream (the wonder of dreaming for me is bypassing waking ego; I shy away from the muscular ego – M.E. – in charge of my dreams, consider it doesn’t do that great a job managing my waking life).
I’m pleased to learn my understanding is mistaken, at least when it comes to serious dream research. My current dream practice works well for me, so I’ll likely continue to just enjoy lucid moments within dream when they occur, rather than attempt to induce and prolong lucid dreams – but I am beginning to understand the value of that approach, thanks to those like Andrew who have shared their experience.