I have a long standing interest in dreams and lucid dreaming, so I thought I'd share this here.
I've noticed a distinct feature of dreams, in that there seem to be three main viewing positions, although there are degrees, gradients and blends and probably a bunch more I don't remember being.
Avatar - focusing on a projected image of oneself within the drama, removed from the action, seems like 3rd person without awareness of the 1st.
Disembodied awareness (da) - the witness, passive participation in events, 1st person
Embodied awareness (ea) - lucid perception, active/willed participation, 1st person
I did have a freakin crazy dream during the last couple of weeks from an utterly indescribable perspective, possibly like a blend of perspectives all at once but it was so confused. More on that later if I get another chance to see it.
When I was a little kid between maybe 4-6 years old, a dream I remember having left a memory that has lasted in practically all of it's glory to the present day. I often think about it but strangely enough I have no memory of ever returning, I suppose there has always been a longing in me to get back. It begins a monochrome dream, with hints and shades of browns, and shadows all around. I am at the far end of a wrought iron bridge, and I am admiring the intricate detail of it's design which I would later compare with the intricacy of spider webs and fractal diagrams. A greyish black mist lays upon the bridge, curling around the iron and blocking vision of the way ahead.
I must have decided to cross it, as the next thing I remember is a magnificent panorama unfolding before my eyes, more like looking at a painting rather than being within a play. The sky is flawless, brilliant blue, no clouds. The end of bridge where I was at is covered in shadow, they bleed into the sky but fade and give way to the blue like ink in water as it connects to the top of a cliffside with a broad road carved snakelike down it's face. Small buildings are also sunk into the cliff along the road, bathed in sunlight. I zoom back into 1st person as I begin to walk down the way. I wander through some of the buildings. They are of middle eastern design. Sandstone walls, plaster and delicately patterned tiles and cut screens that filter the now setting sun's rays to coalesce and bathe all in gold . I remember travelling through a bath house, and living quarters. Comfortable lounges and cushions scattered around. The whole place seems deserted.
Continuing down the cliff to the bottom leads to a port and a great sea. The port is enveloped in shadows and the colour drains the closer I draw near. There is a tremendously huge ship docked, impossibly big. It is ominous. Often I have returned to the ship in dreams afterwards in various situations but not the city. One thing I am probably not emphasising enough is the remarkable beauty and detail of the place, and the wonder and delight it inspired. I could probably even draw the place if I worked at improving my art skills, I can still see it that well.
The next I shall describe took place much more recently (Feb 2013), it's the first lucid dream I had as an adult. I think at a kid it might have come much more naturally but sleep paralysis was a common occurrence plagued with monsters and I lost the skills as I grew up. Must have been three years ago now someone recommended Gaiman's, 'the Sandman' to me so I took an extended weekend and read the whole damn thing in one glorious sitting, breaking only to sleep and eat. I'd also taken to drawing a big 'C' on my left hand to encourage me to look at my hands often to function as a lucidity trigger. Despite this however, what happened the night I finished the series was a surprise.
My old highschool hall is a recurring theme in dreams. On the ground floor it is entered via large swinging doors below a spectator's balcony which is accessed on the second floor, a stage and curtains occupy the back wall and several tall windows on the left wall, one of which is stained glass. A grand piano sits in the top right corner in front of the stage. Hardwood floor, pale cream plastered walls. It's blurred but I remember the familiar 'assembly in the hall' dream. I looked at my own hands quite spontaneously and suddenly a weird sensation like being pulled through a vortex happens and I'm there! Lucid at last! I'm so overcome with joy I don't shut up about it talking at all the blurry people gathered in the hall with me, but all I seem to get is melting, indistinct faces and reactions.
I realise I can go anywhere, do anything, see anybody. Next I remember gliding rapturously through a sparkling and lush landscape, everything soaked in a fresh, divine light, colours are incredibly sharp and more... colourful! Then I think... I want to return to the city. At this, I seem to be walking along a path and the shadows rise up around me, but the way is blocked. Mew, the psychic ancestor pokemon, is between me and the way. It communicates to me that I am not allowed to return there yet, I feel a great wall rise up and I know it is best to leave it alone for now.
I feel like I am being asked where else I would like to go next. I decide that I wish to see Morpheus. Something changes and I find myself directly in his presence. There is no 'place', or 'scene', I see his face which looks like a blend of his face in the comic and my father's face, pale and drawn, eyes like stars. His cloak is the dream itself, the folds constantly shifting, overlapping, it twists around his face like a whirlpool of image and colour. Nothing is said, it's all I can do to gaze. After a time of this I get curious about what there is behind the cloak. I peel it back like page in a book, revealing.... utter blackness, void. As soon as I glance at it, the dream ends and I wake up.
The sight wasn't altogether new to me - I remember one time dreaming on the edge of lucidity before this particular dream occured, the dreamscape sort of shifted aside revealing that void behind it, and from the void leapt a black panther into the scene. It looked directly at me with piercing yellow eyes for several moments and looked curiously offset and hyper-real against the dream events, then gave a roar and either jumped or melted away, I can't quite remember.
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