episode #124 lucid dreams

A lucid dream is a type of dream in which the dreamer becomes aware that they are dreaming while dreaming. During a lucid dream, the dreamer may gain some amount of control over the dream characters, narrative, or environment; however, this is not actually necessary for a dream to be described as lucid. (Wikipedia) In this state, a person can take control of their dream’s narrative to some degree, essentially guiding and directing the course of their dream. Because this type of sleep is associated with awareness and the reflection of this awareness, it is often associated with what is known as metacognition. Metacognition involves the awareness and understanding of your own thought processes.

The first written record of a lucid dream was described by the Greek philosopher Aristotle. In his work On Dreams, he described reaching a state of awareness of his dreaming state. For example, the philosopher Aristotle wrote: “often when one is asleep, there is something in consciousness which declares that what then presents itself is but a dream”. Meanwhile, the physician Galen of Pergamon used lucid dreams as a form of therapy. In addition, a letter written by Saint Augustine of Hippo in 415 AD tells the story of a dreamer, Doctor Gennadius, and refers to lucid dreaming. Cultivating the dreamers ability to be aware that they are dreaming is central to both the ancient Indian Hindu practice of Yoga nidra and the Tibetan Buddhist practice of dream Yoga. The cultivation of such awareness was a common practice among early Buddhists.

Research suggests that the spontaneous experience of lucid dreaming tends to be fairly infrequent, but many people report having them at least once. Experiencing lucid dreams on a frequent basis, however, appears to be fairly uncommon: Approximately half of all people will have at least one lucid dream during their lifetime. Around 23% of people have one lucid dream per month. Only 11% of people report having two or more lucid dreams over the course of a month. The results of one study suggested that lucid dreaming tends to be more common in women and may decrease in frequency as people age.

To conclude, there are many factors that can play a role in whether or not you experience lucid dreaming. While lucid dreaming may have some mental health benefits, some evidence suggests that it may also have some downsides, such as, a higher risk for sleep problems, disassociation, and a negative impact on your mental health because invoking dreams that are both vivid and emotional like a nightmare.

Spoken word

Edgar Allan Poe: Dream-Land read by Jerome McGann


Franz Ferdinand: Lucid Dreams

David Bowie: Sound And Vision

R. Stevie Moore: I’m Only Sleeping

Donald Byrd: Parisian Thoroughfare

Röyksopp: Vision One

BADBADNOTGOOD & Ghostface Killah: Mind Playing Tricks

Boards of Canada: Chromakey Dreamcoat

Louis Armstrong: A Kiss To Build A Dream On

New York Jazz Lounge: Star Dust

Jan P. Muchow: Woke Up In A Dream

A community radio midnight show Through the Bohemian Looking Glass is aired Sunday, Tuesday and Friday night at midnight (GMT), that means you stay late on Saturday, Monday and Thursday. A new episode is aired every Sunday midnight (the night between Saturday and Sunday) on Wirral Wave radio or AirTime. Later on SoundCloud for some time.