Lucid Dreaming Basics

Welcome on this series of tutorials for lucid dreaming. This page looks to explain what lucid dreams are, and the basics of lucid dreaming.

If you came from the Capture app, then congratulations for taking your first step into the world of lucid dreaming!

What are lucid dreams

As the name suggest, lucid dreams are dreams in which you are… lucid (duh!). This means you know that you are in a dream, and this has some interesting consequences:

1. Control

Since you know that you are in a dream, you can control everything in it. From the place, to the characters, to the color of the sun - you can control every little detail in the dream. You want to explore the moon? Meet someone from the past? Confront your biggest fears? You are free to do whatever you want, with no consequence. Pretty awesome on its own, isn’t it? But it’s not all.

2. Vividness

A consequence of being lucid in dreams is that everything feels a lot more real. You will experience the dream like an alternate reality, with all your senses and perceptions. You can see, hear, touch, taste anything like in reality — and yes, it does include pleasure. 😏

Whilst a regular dream can sometimes feels peculiar and distant, a lucid dream is a lot closer to reality. This happens because your conscious brain wakes up. There are different levels of consciousness in dreams, which we refer to as the vividness of lucid dreams.

Now you should understand the interest a lot of people have about lucid dreaming. Although your first lucid dreams will probably be short and only slightly vivid, with some practice you can increase the frequency of lucid dreams, their duration and their vividness.

How to have lucid dreams

So how do we get lucid dreams? Well, there are a lot of different techniques out there. Some imply meditating to directly enter a lucid dream while falling asleep; others rely on realizing the dream and turning lucid during the dream. The other pages of this series present three techniques popular in the lucid dreaming community. These techniques are linked to different features in the Capture app, like alarms or background music.

We will not go into detail on this page since it is explained later on, but let’s answer some questions you may have.

Is lucid dreaming dangerous?

Why would it be? If you’re worrying about getting stuck in a dream, or mistaking reality and lucid dreams, then no, this won’t happen — come on, we are not in Black Mirror. Remember, the basis of lucid dreaming is knowing that you are in a dream, so why would you mistake it with reality?

Is it healthy?

Well lucid dreams are not much different from regular dreams on this point. They are even healthier: by realizing that you are in a dream, you will experience less anxiety, fear and other negative emotions. Being “awake” in a dream doesn’t affect the quality of your sleep. Everything here is natural, so why would it harm us?

Is lucid dreaming scientifically proven?

Yes. Since the 20th century, a lot of experiments have been conducted, analyzing the brain of a dreaming patient, and these have shown clear signs of lucid dreaming.

The beginning

Great, so are you ready to have lucid dreams? Let’s start the preparations. You have to make the idea of lucid dreaming grow in your mind; make lucid dreams omnipresent in you brain.

The first step on the path to lucid dreams is to write your dreams in a journal. That way, you will practice on remembering details of your dreams, grow an interest and make your dreams more important in your mind. You can grab a pen and a paper, or you can download Capture, the dream journal app we made on iOS.

In parallel, you can perform reality checks, which we describe on the next page. But that’s all for the beginning. Don’t try the two other techniques, which are more advanced and will probably not work at the beginning. Focus on writing your dreams and performing reality checks, for at least a week.

We hope this introduction on lucid dreaming provided you with some answers, and made you keen to know more about lucid dreams. We wish you sweet dreams, lucid or not! 😉

~Capture team