(Note – I think I’ve written about lucid dreaming in the past, but I can’t find the post. This is a topic that I have discussed with a few friends recently and wanted to take a deeper dive into how you can increase the possibilities of having a lucid dream. My apologies upfront for any repetition.)
A lucid dream is a dream in which you become aware that you are dreaming. This gives you the ability to control what is happening during your dream. “Why would this be important to a witch” you ask? Well, for one, dreams are an avenue for our subconscious mind to relay information to conscious mind. The ability to exert control over the dream can help a witch more effectively tune in to what your subconscious mind is trying to tell you. Secondly, while dreaming, our brain is experiencing similar activity to when we are practicing magick. This means that we can practice magick and divination, commune with deity or guides, and travel the astral realm in a space without the distractions that are present while awake. And finally, who lucid dreaming is fun.
What follows are some easy steps to help you begin to lucid dream.
- Keep a dream journal
We all have several dreams each night, but remembering a dream in full detail is near impossible. I think we’ve all had the experience of waking up from a dream and almost immediately having difficulty remembering it. By keeping a dream journal near our beds, we can write down the information we remember before it fades away. A dream journal will also help us seem recurring themes in our dreams that we can later use to help us recognize when we are experiencing a dream.
- Reality checks
Simply put, a reality check is periodically confirming that you are not dreaming throughout the day. Reality checks are simple to do. The primary reality check I use is looking at my hands throughout the day, especially in situations that I often dream about. For some reason, our hands look a little fucked up in our dreams. So let’s say that I look at my dream journal and I notice that I keep having dreams about work. While I’m at work, I will periodically look at my hands to see if they look normal. After some time, when I dream about work, I will probably look at my hands in my dream and notice that they seem a bit off. This will make me realize that I am dreaming. Other reality checks include plugging your nose and trying to breathe or consciously trying to make something impossible happen (like turn off a light with your mind).
- Affirmations and meditation
Although these practices can be used independently, I present them together since that’s how I use them. Feel free to do what feels most comfortable for you. Prior going to sleep, especially on nights that I want to induce a lucid dream, I will sit at my altar and meditate. Through meditation, we can reach the delta brain wave state, which is the same state we experience while dreaming. Once I have gotten to this state, which for me is categorized by deep breathing, relaxation, and what I can only describe as the physical “click” of connectedness, I begin using affirmations. I’ll tell myself “Tonight, you will recognize you are dreaming and will at once, be in total control.” This helps me put myself in the right frame of mind for dream work.
Lucid dreaming can also be supported by magick. Some witches charge crystals for lucid dreaming. I have a piece of scolecite that I keep in my nightstand until I need it for lucid dreaming. Labradorite and agate work well for lucid dreaming as well.
Other witches use herbs to put them in the right frame of mind for lucid dreaming. I sometimes use mugwort tea if my goal is to astral project during a lucid dream.
You can also create and charge a sigil for help with lucid dreaming. A witch I know has a sigil she created for this purpose and will draw it on her hand when she wants to lucid dream.
There are several apps out there that can help you lucid dream. The one I am most familiar with is called Awoken. The Awoken app pretty much takes care of several of the steps I listed above. First, it has a built in dream journal and will remind you to record your dreams. It also will prompt you to do reality checks throughout the day. My favorite feature is the totem sound. The totem sound is a sound that you program to go off any time the reality check reminder is activated. Then, while you are asleep, the application will periodically play the sound at a lower volume. The idea is that if you hear the sound in your dream, you will be conditioned to perform a reality check and voila, lucid dream!
I’ve had several amazing experiences while lucid dreaming. I’ve performed rituals at my personal astral temple, I’ve met spirit guides, spoken to my patron deities, and spoken to the dream versions of people I’ve been in conflict that has helped to heal our relationship in the “real” world. It takes practice, but this is a great practice to add to your witchy toolbox.
 I’m not a doctor, so I am not recommending you use mugwort. It can cause miscarriage if you are pregnant and some people may be allergic to the herb. Please consult your doctor before using any herb for any reason. In other words, do your research don’t just trust some guy on the internet.