Since I was a child, I have had conscious dream experiences that take place in immense, spacious realms. Sometimes these spaces are truly voids and my own dream body does not exist. Other times, these spaces fill up with abstract geometric patterns, or multi-colored buzzing particles that resemble the “snow” from a television set.
It’s a terrifying place to be sometimes, simply because everything is stripped away and I am facing the unknown. However, this void simultaneously has held some of my most trusting moments in the dreamstate.
In the lucid void, we have an opportunity to die to our self-perceptions and be reborn in every moment.
Charting Imageless Lucid Dreaming
I call these uncanny spaces imageless lucid dreaming. In the dream studies literature, the works of Kenneth Moss and Linda Magallon in particular resonate strongly with my experiences. More recently, thanks to The Lucid Dream Exchange, I was able to read about many others who have also visited this lucid space that seem to resemble my “void,” most notably Robert Waggoner and Ed Kellogg. Waggoner talks about “the gray state” and Kellogg details his lucid journeys into a vast abstract world he calls “the Matrix.”
[pullquote]We are still in the dark about the state’s physiological signatures[/pullquote]
Also, psychologist Fariba Bogzaran has detailed a similar realm that she has named “Hyper-space lucidity,” characterized by lightning-fast travel and filled sometimes with dark light. For Bogzaran, the experience is non-dual in nature. The spectrum of possibility here no doubt has to do with the individual’s paradigm of reality, mental set, and cultural background.
To date, there have been no laboratory studies that look at this experience in particular, so we are still in the dark about the state’s physiological signatures. Is it REM? Hypnagogia? Imageless lucid dreaming is in a similar place to where lucid dreaming was thirty years ago: experienced first-hand by many, and scolded by other non-believers that it is merely a “micro-awakening” between dreams.
Until we have third-person validity, therefore, it’s important that we continue to document the first-hand experience of this unique altered state. I hope you join me in this exploration and share your findings.
Moving into the Void
I’d like to now share my lucid void practice that appears to invite powerfully emotional lucid dreams.
By engaging in a meditative state during the lucid void, the dream recrystallizes around you. If you hold an attitude of trust and acceptance, the new dream scene will spontaneously regenerate.
What emerges is different for everyone, but suffice to say that you will be brought precisely to the place you need to be.
It begins with realizing you are dreaming and remembering your intention. You can then enter the void at will by disturbing an ongoing dream scene by walking through a mirror or sinking through the ground, or whatever works for you.
I used to crawl into television sets, but I lost a few opportunities as I would wander around the dream looking for a TV. The best methods are those you can do anywhere, without a prop.
From there, you may experience a number of disorienting spaces.
I often experience various geometric shapes and bizarre bodily feelings of flying or drifting. Sometimes a vortex is created –such as in my painting above — and I (the ego core without a dream body) enter the swirling lights, travel through a twisty-turny tunnel, and am then spilled out into a dream scene with a normal dream body.
Many of these new dreams would be powerfully emotional dreams, with opportunities for working with issues core to my personal mythology.
Waiting and trusting in the unknown
Try waiting in the void with a meditative attitude.
Notice what is happening around you, and notice your thoughts as they come and go.
Try not to have any goal or expectation, but when one does crop up, note it and then return to your waiting posture. If you feel fear, remind yourself that you’re safe in this space and if you choose, you can wake up at any time.
Sooner or later, the dream will re-form around you.
Where will you end up?
You may be surprised.
This article is adapted from my new ebook Lucid Immersion Guidebook, which is now available on Amazon as a Kindle download.
Bogzaran, F. (2003). Lucid art and hyperspace reality. Dreaming, 13(1), pp. 29-42.
Kellogg III, E.W. (2005) Enter the Matrix: Exploring the Source Code of Dreams. Presentation at the 2005 Psiberdreaming Conference.
Magallon, L. (1991). Awake in the dark: Imageless lucid dreaming. Lucidity, 10(1&2), pp. 46-48.
Moss, K. (1991). Experimentation with the vortex phenomenon in lucid dreams. Lucidity, 10(1&2), pp. 49-51.
Waggoner, R. (2009). Lucid Dreaming: Gateway to the Inner Self. Needham: Moment Point Press.
CC First image: Tunnel by Mariana C.