Do you begin to relate to the reflection? Does your analytical mind arise (e.g., ‘I need to wash my hair’) or the emotional mind (e.g., ‘You look marvelous!’) or the social mind (e.g., ‘I wish that pimple would go away—I want to look good for the party’)?
Do you begin to relate to what you see? Does your analytical mind arise (e.g., ‘It looks like rain’) or the emotional mind (e.g., ‘I wish my neighbor would not park that crummy car in front of our house’) or the social mind (e.g., ‘There is Susan; I wonder if she could give me a ride’)?
When perception arises, the mind normally arises. Suddenly, the mind begins its process of interpreting, analyzing, responding, debating and relating. Soon, you find yourself not relating to ‘what exists’ perceptually— but to all the thoughts, meanings, interpretations, feelings which arise in response to the perceptions. You do not relate to the situation, as much as you relate to your mind’s view of the situation.
As I say in my books and workshops: Lucid dreaming does not mean ‘control’; instead, lucid dreaming means more aware relating. Knowing that you dream, you now relate to the perceived experience in a different, more aware manner. That guy there? A dream figure! This wall? Dream stuff! Even though it may look or feel or act as you expect (and often does), you ‘view’ it in a new way and relate to it with greater awareness.
Greater awareness may improve your relating, but it may also show you how expectation, belief, focus, social conditioning, and cultural conditioning (consciously and unconsciously) affect the lens of your perceiving and its analysis. Seeing this in lucid dreaming suggests that your entire perceived experience (waking or dreaming) exists as a giant, never-ending Rorschach test of constant interpretation through the inner mindset of your belief system. The self does not see, so much as ‘filters and interprets’.
The next time you find yourself talking to a friend about your life, think this: ‘I share only views, opinions, beliefs, feelings, ideas about the actual experience. I do not ‘know’ the actual experience, only my interpretation. These comments share only my Rorschach-like analysis.’ Then see what happens internally. How does this make you feel?
At this point you might wonder:
Lucid dreamers who have deep interactions with the ‘larger awareness’ begin to develop the capacity to recognize that the larger self exists within a broader context than this ego awareness. Given that, and the knowledge of how the ego’s mindset helps to create and shape perceived experience, the lucid dreamer can accept the ego self must ‘let go’ in order to experience ‘as is’ as it is.
Mirrors, reflections, bubbles, moon-on-water fantasy. Waking up to the nature of the mind seems the actual value of lucid dreaming’s greater awareness.
At the time, it seemed a simple question, which I posed to the young woman in the lucid dream. But this simple question led to profound lessons in lucidity, and taught me much about the nature of transformation in dreams, lucid dreams and waking.read more
In 1985 after ten years of lucid dreaming, I had a mini-epiphany after an unexpected conversation in a lucid dream. In the dream, I approached an elderly dream figure in a three-piece suit and lucidly asked him, “Excuse me, what do you represent?”read more
In dreams, the idea of ‘time’ becomes much more fluid. We may find ourselves sitting in our kindergarten classroom with our current co-workers, talking to a spaceman from the future. Here, various decades of experience occupy the same space, and the past, present, and future merrily co-mingle.read more
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