Last night was the first night of my determined attempt to reconfigure my sleep cycle. For the past year or more my head has not hit my pillow until about 3 or 4 in the morning; apart from the fact that this is not at all healthy, it also plays havoc with my lucid dream practice, as I can barely recognise reality when I’m awake, let alone my ethereal wanderings when I’m dreaming. My brain seemed to recognise that I’d gone to bed at a more congenial time, and subsequently put on quite a fantastical show for me. Although I did not become lucid, dream after dream came like the wild waves on a beach, and I had immense pleasure as I surfed each and every one.
Unfortunately, I forgot all but one of those dreams soon after waking this morning. Something else happened during the night, after I was rudely awoken by some drunken neanderthals outside: some bizarre hypnagogic hallucinations aided my passage back to sleep.
I’m a passenger in a fighter jet racing at incredible speed towards the stratosphere. I look out through the domed glass canopy of the plane and watch with excited eyes as the Earth falls away and the majesty of the vast sparkling void grows across my field of view. Within seconds my weight is like that of a feather.
“Let’s go outside,” the pilot says.
“Cool,” I reply, as the aircraft’s canopy swings opens.
I’m not wearing any kind of special suit, nor am I in possession of a mask with air supply, but I have no problems breathing as I leave the jet and enjoy the sight of the beautiful Earth far below.
“Don’t let go of the plane,” the pilot warns, “or you’ll float away.”
After enjoying a brief moment as an astronaut, I pull myself back inside the plane, and we begin our descent back to Earth. We are flying over a mountain range when the pilot calmly says:
“Oh, dear. It looks as though we’re going to crash, you better put your seatbelt on.”
I quickly fumble to click my seat belt into place… A car seat belt, because I’m now sat on white leather seats in the back of a luxury car, yet still flying over the mountains. I put my head between my knees and clasp my hands over the back of my head, and wait for the inevitable… Which doesn’t happen, as I wake up to the sound of the dick-heads outside.
Death is not something to fear in the dream world—if it doesn’t snap you back to reality, it usually transports you to another dream—so I was somewhat annoyed to be awoken from my adventures.
The hypnagogic lullaby:
I was awake while I experienced the following. You could argue that I was actually asleep and it was all part of another dream, but I only saw it while my eyes were closed. I found it quite fascinating to open and close my eyes: while my eyes were open, I could see that I was laying in my bed in my dark bedroom; yet while my eyes were closed, I experienced this wonderful sight:
I’m either a foot tall, or the grass and flowers surrounding me are enormous. I watch as the lush grass gently sways this way and that, while pretty flowers bow and dance. There is no sound, just a beautiful sight to behold, and quite remarkable in the fact that it all looks like a brightly coloured cartoon. I’m tempted to grab my phone and use my recording app to dictate exactly what I am seeing as I am seeing it, but I don’t for fear of bringing an abrupt end to the show. Sleep followed a few minutes later.
Thankfully at least last nights dance with hypnogogia didn’t evaporate like most of my dreams did.