The potential of lucid dreaming seems truly extraordinary. Besides the innate joy and freedom of lucid dreams, experienced lucid dreamers use this hybrid state of consciousness to seek creative solutions, resolve emotional conflicts, direct healing to the body and explore personal and spiritual growth.
Here are six reasons to lucid dream:
For joy and inner freedom.
When you become consciously aware in a dream, you often feel a sense of ‘lucid euphoria’. Realizing your true state more clearly, you naturally let go of many fears, concerns and limitations. You understand your ability to influence the dream environment.
To explore the dream state and access creativity.
When you are aware of dreaming, you can explore the dream state and realize that it has principles and rules. Learning this makes it easier to manipulate the dream (though to be more accurate, you really manipulate your own mind – or beliefs, expectations, intent, etc.).
Some people have used lucid dreams to access inner creativity. For example, a man who writes software code tells how he would use lucid dream to figure out difficult problems – and in the morning, he would see that the work was 99% correct ( source: Stephen LaBerge & Howard Rheingold’sExploring the World of Lucid Dreaming). A musician uses lucid dreaming to practice difficult musical pieces – and suddenly, it becomes much easier to perform that music when awake. An artist uses lucid dreaming to discover new paintings to paint, and when he paints them, he finds it very easy to do so, since he has already seen it in the lucid dream.
If you know how, you can use lucid dreaming to access creativity directly for art, literature, music, software and inventions.
To heal your emotions.
Currently, some therapists use lucid dreaming to help people end recurring nightmares from PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder. Normally, if the person becomes consciously aware one time, then that ends the recurring nightmare. However, personal examples suggest that lucid dreaming can be used to resolve many emotional or psychological issues.
I have taught some lucid dreamers to use lucid dreaming to overcome phobias. For example, I helped a lucid dreamer overcome her (waking) fear of flying through lucid dreaming. In the virtual reality of lucid dreams, I encouraged her to go to dream airports and get on dream airplanes, and see how she felt. If she felt comfortable in the lucid dream, then she should let the lucid dream airplane take off and fly. Even though ‘just’ a lucid dream, she became more and more comfortable with airports, airplanes and flying.
After five lucid dreams like this, she bought a ticket on a real airplane to fly to a dream conference – and had no trouble or fear on the waking flight. She told me that she bought a window seat, since she wished to see if flying in a real airplane was like flying in the lucid dream airplanes!
To help heal your physical body.
In my book, Lucid Dreaming: Gateway to the Inner Self, I have a chapter on using lucid dreaming to help heal your physical body. I provide about ten examples of lucid dreamers who have used the lucid dream state to successfully heal physical ailments (many of these came from the work of Ed Kellogg, Ph.D.). I also provide three examples of lucid dreamers who had no change in physical health (and point out how they approached lucid dream healing incorrectly).
Currently, there has not been any scientific research on using lucid dreams for physical healing. However, the work of Stephen LaBerge on the body’s response to lucid dream activity, such as changing respiration, moving eyes, alternating muscle movements, etc., show a strong parallel response in the physical body to these lucid events. It seems extremely plausible, therefore, that a lucid dreamer could intend physical changes (i.e., healing) while lucidly aware.
Since my book has come out, many readers have written to the LDE and told of their success with using lucid dreams to improve their physical situation or heal physical problems.
To investigate the nature of the mind.
In lucid dreams, we ultimately learn that we do not manipulate the dream, so much as we manipulate our mind, or our beliefs, expectations, focus, intent and ‘will’. By working with the mind, we can go very deep into the nature of things, and even experience ‘concepts’ while in a lucid dream.
To perform spiritual practices.
When you are consciously aware in a lucid dream, you can do many things, including spiritual practices. In my forthcoming book (Lucid Dreaming – Plain and Simple with co-author Caroline McCready), there is a chapter on meditating within a lucid dream. People who meditate within a lucid dream often have profound experiences very quickly, when they approach it properly. Along with this often come important realizations about the nature of mind and experience. Again, lucid dreaming can serve as a long and deep path to spiritual growth and greater awakening.