Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Dream Interviews, and a Resurrection

Consciousness Exploration Journal

I was riding in an elevator that was headed to a loft apartment. I stepped off the elevator and entered a large kitchen. Some sort of casual dinner party was at the cusp of beginning. As I walked into the scene, I inexplicably became fully lucid. I approached a  tall man in his 50’s to strike up a conversation. I kept trying to get his attention, but each time that I tried to address him face-to-face his head would turn so that I could only see the back of his head. He also appeared to be very busy, so I eventually gave up and moved on to another person. 

I noticed a small group of people engaged in what appeared to be an interesting conversation. I eventually worked my way into the group and found an opportunity to ask one of the men what he thought about the process of dreaming. He seemed to become very confused by the question, as if he had only ever considered the topic in passing. He tried very hard to formulate a coherent response, but seemed to become more and more disoriented as a result. I eventually got the impression that he didn’t think too much about dreaming and didn’t find it to be all that special. 

I moved on to a woman in the same group. I asked her what she thought about the process of dreaming. Her response turned into an mild argument with the previous man. Apparently she found dreams to be quite relevant while he did not. They countered back and forth like a couple going through the motions of a disagreement that has been played out many times before. I lost her attention and so decided to move on.

As I scanned the room, I noticed that an elevator was arriving. Inside was a family of 5. The mother was lying on the floor and was unresponsive. Her three young girls were circled around her. The father was slumped into the corner with his chin to his chest apparently mourning the loss of his wife. The scene was reminiscent of a narrative painting from the Italian Renaissance. As I watched the scene, one of the little girls said, “poor mommy.” I lightheartedly thought to myself (or perhaps it was out loud), “not to worry. This is my dream. I will bring her back to life.” I walked over to the woman and raised my hand over her body to signify my intention. The woman slowly came around and while somewhat still disoriented said, “I must have fallen asleep.” In almost comical fashion, the husband and children were instantly back to normal. They shuffled off to join the party, leaving the mother alone in the elevator. The woman casually thanked me. I explained that she could return the favor by letting me ask her a few questions. She become very flirtatious at this, as if she had misunderstood my request. I redirected her to my question, “what do you think about the process of dreaming?” As she started to answer, I suddenly found myself soaring over a larger body of water and toward a bridge. I felt very much like a bird gliding through the air. The new scene and the various sensations were very crisp and vivid. The woman’s voice boomed across the sky. The words were clear and strong, yet I couldn’t comprehend what she was saying. I had a hunch that the dream was about to end. I decided to wake myself up before slipping back into unawareness and forgetting the vividness of the experience. 

I regret not having asked a more meaningful question.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Sleep Paralysis, Fear, and the Voice.

Consciousness Exploration Journal

I woke from a dream and found myself in full sleep paralysis. I was getting slight sensory input from the actual room in which I was sleeping and also from the sleep/dream state. I tried to maintain my composure and relax into the sleep paralysis. I felt a shift and had the very real sensation of being turned onto my side with my feet floating well above where the bed would be. My head seemed to be anchored to the location of my actual head on the pillow. A forceful wind began rushing passed me. My tilted and sideways body began flapping like a flag in a storm. Many of the other typical sensations were present: voices, chatter, buzzing, etc. One of the voices sounded very similar to that of Bob Monroe (as he sounds on the various hemi-sync audio files). I focused on what he was saying, but could only pull out bits and pieces. I eventually could make out something along the lines of, “I will let go and see what happens, even if I might die... even if I might die”. I was a bit surprised and curious about this statement, but at the same time found it very fitting. I tried to remember what task or test I had planned to carry out, but was too distracted by the breadth and intensity of the various sensations.  The sensations of my body in the waking world were still present, but only slightly so. I could hear the nails of my dog’s paws taping across the floor as she approached the side of the bed to be let outside. The sound was distant and muffled though, like a fading memory. A seemingly random question entered my mind: “what lessons should I be learning from this life?” The sensations grew to a violent intensity. My awareness of the waking world quickly faded. I figuratively gritted my teeth and braced for impact. Suddenly, and as clear as if somebody was standing a foot from my ear, I heard a voice say, “aaaahhhhhhhhhhh” as if the voice was doing a comical imitation of somebody riding on a roller coaster. There was such a strong feeling that the sound was directed specifically at me by an outside observer that I began working to stop the experience. Slowly, I was able to wiggle a toe and then a finger and eventually wake up. 

I had a similar experience several weeks ago. I woke up in sleep paralysis and was experiencing the usual sensations. I mustered up some courage and just tried to relax into it. On this occasion, I heard the same voice as in the above experience. However, this particular time it made a silly and almost comical growl (similar to the way that I might growl as I am playing with my kids). It also gave me a bit of a scare and caused me to stop the experience. It is interesting that the voice in both of these experiences sounds like my own. 

Though I have experienced sleep paralysis well over 100 times, the intensity and extent of the various sensations still takes me by surprise. There is no doubt that sleep paralysis can serve as a gateway to the stereotypical out-of-body experience (at least for me). In most every case, when I encourage the sleep paralysis state further, there is, at some point, the clear sensation of detaching from my sleeping body or connecting to a new reality while still maintaining full awareness. The sensation is as real and as crisp as the sensation of sitting in this chair and typing on a keyboard. The experiences that occur after these separations vary. Some have lead to profound and life-changing experiences. In others, I just float up into a thick darkness and am unable to use my mental intent to effect or alter the experience. 

The voice has sent me running away with my tail between my legs twice. I'll see what I can do next time.

Tom Campbell’s discussion of fear in the video below has helped me a great deal in relation to sleep paralysis (you can skip the intro and start the video at 50 seconds). Courage truly is the only effective antidote for fear. It seems that the more I dig and explore who I am, the more fear and ego I dig up. I have let go of the notion that perfection is the goal. The goal, as I see it, is to maintain a steady state of evolution toward love.