DILDs – Dream Initiated Lucid Dreams – are some of the most natural lucid dreams. A person experiencing a DILD goes to sleep “properly” and has what one would call a “normal” dream, during which, he/she suddenly becomes lucid for whatever reason.
Lucidity is usually achieved as a result of a sudden realization that something is “not right” within the dream, or through the recognition of a pattern.
While DILDs can be entirely spontaneous, there are a number of techniques one can employ to increase the odds of having a such a lucid dream.
Why would you want to have a lucid dream to begin with?
LDs open up a whole new dimension to life. Being in control of a dream is not just a very unique and pleasant experience, it is also one that places the dreamer in a position of power, from which he/she can solve various real-life problems, achieve better stress relief or go on a magical adventure.
Obviously, the more predisposed one is to lucid dreaming, the easier it will be for him/her to become lucid.
What exactly does this mean?
People who usually have long, vivid and/or weird dreams, or those who find it easier to remember their dreams, will find it much easier to achieve DILD too.
Fortunately, that does not mean that those who do not fall into the above category will find dream-initiated lucid dreaming impossible.
In fact anyone can do it. How?
How to Achieve a Dream-Induced Lucid Dream?
There are quite a few ways to bring about a DILD, or rather, to help it pop up on its own.
- Dream sign-identification
- Reality checks
- WBTB (Wake Back to Bed)
- Sleep-cycle adjustment (CAT)
The identification of a specific dream sign/pattern is often how spontaneous lucidity is achieved. The dreamer notices a pattern that he/she remembers from other dreams, and suddenly, he/she realizes that he/she is indeed dreaming again.
Keeping a dream journal (in which the dreamer jots down details about his/her dreams as soon as he/she wakes up) can be extremely helpful in this regard. Properly remembering a dream is always a challenge, and this approach can help immensely in that respect too.
Reality checks are among the simplest and the most exciting practices one can adopt for DILD.
The practice is based on the performing of reality checks throughout the day, which can be intricate (like reading text off a piece of paper or checking a clock, while asking “am I dreaming?”), or really simple, like trying to put one hand through the palm of the other.
When these reality checks become second nature, one will in essence be compelled to perform them within his/her dreams too.
When done in a dream, the results of the checks will be different of course, and this realization will likely spark lucidity.
Meditation is considered a viable avenue for DILD-odds enhancement.
It has been scientifically proven that those who meditate, find it much easier to trigger DILDs. In fact, masters of this technique are apparently able to trigger DILDs at will.
The WBTB (Wake Back to Bed) technique may seem a tad forced and artificial for something as natural as DILD, but it is just another way to enhance the odds in this regard.
WBTB consists of waking up two hours early, getting out of bed and being active for 20-30 minutes, after which the WBTB-er goes back to sleep, to experience a dramatically increased number of DILDs.
The method takes advantage of the peculiarities of REM sleep and of its affinity for dreaming in general.
The CAT Method
A method which takes a similar approach is CAT (Cycle Adjustment). The essence of the method resides in the pushing of one’s awakening consciousness into the middle of REM sleep.
This way, the period a maximum consciousness can be superposed with a period a maximum dream-affinity, creating the perfect premises for a DILD.
Awakening earlier than normal for a given period of time, followed by another period, during which the earlier awakening is done only sparsely, is the way the above described feat is achieved.
Self-hypnosis is essentially a self-suggestive method, through which the would-be oneironaut programs his/her brain to recognize dreams for what they are.
Contrary to what popular culture may have you believe in this regard, the method is indeed safe, and relatively simple.
One way to do it is to imagine oneself descending a flight of stairs while in a state of deep relaxation. With every step, one goes deeper and deeper into hypnosis. Repeating “I experience a lucid dream” and “I’m taking control of my dreams” during the exercise is also in order.
This takes us to yet another DILD technique, called MILD (Mnemonic Induced Lucid Dreaming).
MILD is very similar to the WBTB method and requires waking up earlier than usual, recalling your last dream and imagining yourself in that same dream, fully alert and lucid until you fall back asleep.
This method has been shown to lead to increased lucid dream occurrence and vividness.
In addition to all the above, there are various other – less “mainstream” – ideas, methods, supplements and gadgets, used to induce lucid dreaming.
The SILD (Subliminally Induced Lucid Dreaming) technique for instance, takes MILD a step further, as it attempts to program one’s mind through subliminal messages delivered in various videos.
There is a surprisingly diverse range of lucid dream masks available out there too. I cannot really state anything regarding the efficiency of such devices, though some do indeed swear that they exert a noticeable effect on DILD-frequency.
Others swear by binaural beats, which are in essence sound waves played through headphones that help the listener fall asleep.
The bottom line
By practicing the above described technique(s) that you find most effective and rewarding, you won’t just temporarily increase your chances of triggering a DILD.
You will in fact become more and more skilled at bringing about the experience, and with time, you may grow to be able to trigger a DILD almost every night. You can indeed become a DILD-master.