What is a Wake Induced Lucid Dream (WILD)? A WILD can happen when you go to sleep and try to remain conscious while you let your body fall asleep. Of course letting your “body fall asleep” isn’t actually what’s going on. It’s just letting the parts of your brain that control dreaming and motor function to become relaxed enough to induce sleep paralysis, and activate Rapid Eye Movement (REM).
Before finally accomplishing it, in June 2008, I tried it 11 nights in a row, and failed each time. By “failed,” I mean I stayed awake longer than I wished I did, until I eventually fell asleep.
Is lucid dreaming dangerous?
Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak. 1 Corinthians 8:9
I didn’t learn how to lucid dream. I didn’t read a book. I didn’t take a course. I’ve naturally been able to lucid dream my entire life, without any effort. My brain seems to be wired for it. If tomorrow I decided to never attempt to have a lucid dream, ever again, I’d still have at least two a month; usually it’s about one a week.
If I’m sleep deprived, I lucid dream less. If I’m going to the gym, getting enough sleep, running, and eating healthy, I lucid dream more.
So for me lucid dreaming is just normal dreaming. Is normal dreaming dangerous? I wouldn’t think so.
The reason I know about lucid dreaming is because of popular culture, and I’ve met a few people, even all the way back in elementary school2, that can do it too. Then at the turn of the century, Google became a thing, and I found out even more thanks to the power of the internet.
Is it dangerous for you?
It depends. Are you a drug addict? Are you suffering from depression or anxiety? Are you taking medication? Are you into paranormal stuff? Do you have a history of mental illness? Does your family have a history of mental illness? Those are all factors. If you want medical advice you should consult your doctor, not me, and not the internet.
Alcohol can be dangerous. A car can be dangerous. Even water is dangerous under the right circumstances. So, it might be dangerous for you.
Is it addictive?
I don’t know. I don’t have an addictive personality. Some people do. I can imagine that when the Oculus Rift and virtual reality finally work very well together, that people will become addicted to those types of video games.
Some people have a gene that can make them susceptible to alcohol addiction.3 If you’re the type of person that lets certain things get in the way of work, family, friends, finances, and productivity, those things usually aren’t a good idea for you.
If you’re lonely and depressed, I’d probably say that lucid dreaming isn’t a good idea. You literally feel like a god when you’re in a lucid dream, because you can do anything. Lucid dreaming is like the Matrix, and you’re Neo4. So if you feel like a worm in real life, you might give lucid dreams more attention than is healthy, and it could screw with your life.
Will you ever think you’re dreaming…in real life?
I guess it depends on the person. I’ve never had that problem. That doesn’t even seem like a problem a healthy, unmedicated person should have. When you’re dreaming, you can breath underwater. Now I don’t recommend you try that (because this is the internet and you might be an idiot, I kind of have to say that).
What you can do is take two fingers and use them to block your nostrils. If you can still breathe, you’re dreaming. Simple as that. Common sense.
I personally never need that test because (1) dreams feel different than real life. (2) If you’re still dreaming but think you’re awake, then whatever. Go brush your teeth, make breakfast, and abide by the law. You’ll wake up when it’s time for you to wake up. You’re not missing anything. Time passes more quickly in dreams than in real life.5 So you might feel you had a 3 hour dream, when in reality it was only 15 minutes.
Just know that lucid dreaming is sort of uncharted territory. It’s been a part of my life since I was a small child, and I’m interested in understanding it, especially because I think it’s genetic, and I want to be able to teach my kids how to control it, so they don’t get scared. Nobody really taught me, and the little I was taught made things more scary than they needed to be. You’ll understand what I mean by the end of this article.
If you’re anxious and scare easily, turn back now. This is not for you.
This should be one of those posts where secular people say, “Man, I agree with this dude, I just wish he wasn’t so religious,” and religious people say, “Good points, but why does it have to be so secular?” Welcome to my communication style.
I actually have a life long history with sleep paralysis. Ever since I was a small child, I would go to bed, and just about as often as I lucid dream, I would experience what I now know to be sleep paralysis. Back then, I didn’t know what it was – or I should say I thought I knew what it was – and it frightened me. Since during my waking hours, I didn’t experience anything like it, I assumed it was supernatural.6
I’m religious, and as a Nigerian I was raised to be a bit more superstitious than is healthy or rational, due to our cultural traditions. My parents, had warned me as a small child that if I ever experience a situation where I can’t move, and I feel like something is sitting on my chest, or I see what looks like a demon, that I should cast it out in Jesus’ name.7 This phenomenon is so common, that most human beings will experience it at least a few times in their lives, and it’s been depicted in paintings and sculpture around the world.
The thing about sleep paralysis is that when your brain has reached the state that it’s ready to paralyze you, it actually begins inducing hallucinations in preparation to enter a dream. This transition state between wakefulness and sleeping is called Hypnagogia.
When you enter sleep paralysis, you are unable to move or speak. You can still breathe of course, because that’s involuntary. The reason your brain does this is to keep you from acting out your dreams in real life. So if you’re running in a dream, you won’t run in real life. If you’re fighting in a dream, you won’t throw punches in bed. If you’re yelling in a dream, you won’t yell in real life.
Sleep paralysis doesn’t always work, depending on what phase in the sleep cycle you’re in. Often times sleep paralysis will begin to wear off before you wake up, or if you’re exiting the REM cycle, so in those scenarios it’s nothing to worry about.
On the other hand, things like stress, disease, and trauma can also affect how efficient your brain is at paralyzing your body, which can make you unintentionally act out your dreams. This is a type of sleep disorder, called REM Behavior Disorder (RBD).
Even animals experience sleep paralysis, and just like humans, sometimes it doesn’t work as well as it’s supposed to.
Inducing Sleep Paralysis
For the average person, your conscious mind is never awake when your brain transitions into this phase so you have no idea what it feels like or what is going on in your mind during that time.
The way to induce sleep paralysis is to trick your body8 into falling asleep by getting into your sleep position and focusing on mental images (your mind’s eye, not the black animations you see behind your eyelids) while trying to remain conscious and also paying attention to your body. Your body will occasionally feel itchy, but if you scratch, it tells the subconscious part of your brain that your conscious mind isn’t asleep, so don’t induce paralysis yet.
After a period of time, either you will fall asleep, or your body will enter sleep paralysis while you remain conscious. Once sleep paralysis begins, it’s the strangest feeling and you have to remain calm, otherwise your body will wake up and you’ll have to start the entire process again.
First, a tickling sensation shoots through your spine. Its like the sensation in your stomach when on an amusement park ride that has a sudden drop, except that feeling is located in your spine. I call it the “spinal rocket.” It’s a tickling sensation that shoots up your spine “like a rocket.”
Next, starting from your feet9 it feels like your body starts to shake, then your hands, then all over. It’s almost as if you’re being gently electrocuted, but it doesn’t hurt. You’re not actually moving at all, it’s all an illusion.
Has your foot ever fallen asleep? Its like when you’re in a position where your foot falls asleep and you get the vibration feeling that comes right before the pins and needles, except its your entire body this time. It’s very hard to keep your eyes closed during this period.
Slowly the entire sensation subsides and you can’t feel your body anymore. Then something weird happens.
It’s happened two different ways to me. The first time when I almost did this, it felt like I fell out of my body through the bottom of my bed; then I woke up the next morning. The WILD didn’t happen; it was a failure to launch. The second time – the time I wrote about below – it felt like I did a backflip out of my body, into my own brain, but this time I remained conscious for the entire experience.
Flying Pigs, and How Lucid Dreaming Works
Your conscious mind falls asleep separately from the rest of your brain. Your conscious mind holds your personality, your morals, your reservations, your memories, and your logic. That’s why when you’re dreaming, you often don’t notice something is amiss. You might be flying an airplane, when in real life you have no idea how to fly an airplane. You’ll often see something quite incredible, like a flying singing pig, and it’s only upon waking that you realize that it was entirely out of the ordinary.
I remember as a child, I’d always dream about driving cars. I had no idea how to drive a car, and no experience outside of video games at Peter Piper Pizza, so the cars in my dreams often behaved like the cars in the video games. They’d drive super fast and I wouldn’t be able to control them. Oh, and the brakes never worked when you really, really wanted them to.
This inability to detect the absurd is because your conscious rational mind actually falls asleep when you dream, allowing the rest of your subconscious mind free reign. One of the most common ways I realize I’m dreaming, is when my conscious mind wakes up in the middle of a dream. In other words, it wakes up before it’s supposed to. It’s then that I realize something is out of the ordinary, and it alerts me that I’m in a dream. This usually will happen 5-30 minutes before I wake up in the morning.
And to be honest, I did dream about a flying-singing pig when I was in the fifth grade.10 It was flying over a yacht…my yacht. The pig was singing Christian music, I can’t remember exactly if it was Phillips Craig and Dean, or some other band, but in the fifth grade I liked going to bed with Christian radio on (K-LOVE). I woke up in the middle of the pig-flying dream only to find out that the pig was singing the exact song that was playing on the radio.
When I was a child, I went through a 3-4 year phase where I would sleepwalk on occasion, and my parents were familiar with what it looked like because of me. In fact, as a kid I’d regularly sleep over at a friend’s house, and his parents have experience with sleepwalking because of me.
I remember one time they tried to wake me up as I was sleepwalking/sleep-crying.11 I came to as my friend’s dad and his wife were trying to reason with me, in their own unique Nigerian way. God bless ’em.
As for sleep walking around my parents, I never even knew it happened until they’d tell me the next day.
Today, it’s much easier for a parent to document their child’s sleepwalking patterns, due to the advent of the phone camera. You can expect breakthroughs in sleepwalking behavioral research to happen over the next couple decades because of this.
Apparently the way they’d handle it is to tell me to go back to my room and get in bed, which I obeyed. It’s funny, because that’s actually what you’re supposed to do to a sleepwalking person. The subconscious mind is perfectly able to understand and obey commands, as well as navigate obstacles. Trying to wake up a sleepwalker isn’t necessarily dangerous, depending on the person’s age and strength.
I don’t recommend trying to wake up a sleepwalking Dwayne Johnson under any circumstances. He might give you “The People’s Elbow.” Just let him be.
The reason why, is that being awoken in a sleepwalking state is very scary for the sleepwalker, who has no idea what’s going on. In that state, you barely even know your own name.
I still remember being woken up by my father once, when I was sleepwalking at the age of 8 or 9 years old. Apparently, I had gotten out of bed and locked the door to my room in my sleep. I know for a fact that I didn’t do it while awake, nor did I ever lock my door before going to bed. When my dad came to check on me during the night, he found my door locked. In typical Nigerian fashion he was upset and demanded the door be opened, pounding on it, and yelling at me.
I still remember it like it was yesterday, because it was one of the most frightening things I’ve ever experienced.
I found myself trying to become conscious, floating in an Alice in Wonderland-esque 3D maze, with spinning black, white, and red colors. I’ve only had this type of dream a few times in my entire life – maybe three or four total – and it’s a dream where the entire universe “stutters” and sometimes moves in reverse. S-s-s-s-s-s-s-s-so i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-it’s kind-kind-kin-ki-ki-kind of like this.
I had no idea where I was but I knew I wanted out of there!
And to be clear, it’s not quite a dream12. It’s only ever happened when I’m waking up from a dream, or about to fall asleep into a dream. To describe it visually, it’s like if you’ve ever played an online video game and it begins to lag, where the screen stutters, and hangs. To describe it auditorily, it’s actually exactly like when a CD skips and repeats.
So there I am trapped in Wonderland, meanwhile my father is yelling at me on the other side of the door. Slowly, I start to hear his yelling inside this weird place, but it is completely incoherent, and only makes me more afraid. “Aaa-aaa-aa-a-ah o-o-o-o-ooop-open Da-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-Da-Da-Da-Da-Dav…” all of this going on with what sounds like synthesizers blaring in the background.
Then I wake up a second time, but this time I’m not in Wonderland. I’m standing in my bedroom, in the dark. At this point I still hear the yelling but I have no idea what is going on, so I can’t exactly comply with these demands. I just remember being really scared and kind of pacing around trying to figure out where I was, and why I was being yelled at. Slowly, I became more conscious, and understood that I was in my room, and I could see the hallway light on under my door.
Still, I had no idea how I got to be standing, and no idea why I was being yelled at. Then I heard it and finally understood it too.
“David, open this door right now!”
So I walked over to my door in the dark, and played with the lock for a little bit, because in my semi-conscious state I couldn’t quite figure out how the door lock worked. Once the door was open, my dad asked why I locked it.
I think the look I gave him gave everything away, because he started to calm down. I couldn’t even speak English properly. I remember mumbling complete nonsense like “I-I-I want to…I don’t…I didn’t do anything…” and after trying and failing to speak coherently for what seemed like a long time, though it was probably about 30 seconds, I was finally able to say, “I don’t know…I don’t know. I didn’t lock it. I mean, I don’t remember locking it.” He put me back in bed as I was obviously sleep walking. I’m pretty sure he prayed for me the next day.
After about the age of 10, I never slept walked ever again. Though, I have experienced that “lag” a couple times since then when transitioning in and out of sleep, but only for a few seconds. The childhood incident I’m recalling was a few minutes long, and very frightening.
June 29, 2008
After 11 nights of trial and error, I finally accomplished my goal. I’m not superstitious, but I’m still a Christian, so I prayed before even attempting this. I pray before I sleep every night, I pray for my food. You better believe I’m going to pray before doing a WILD.
As I lay in bed, I felt the same feeling I felt my entire life, a tickling sensation shooting up my spine like a rocket. My entire body began to vibrate, bringing on sleep paralysis. Suddenly it felt like I was being pulled out of my body and deep into my brain. Specifically, it felt as if I performed a back flip out of my body, and into my own head, somewhere behind my eyeballs. During that “backflip” I perceived myself as passing through a grayish black and white tunnel, almost like a wormhole.
All this time I was seeing images in black and white (mixed with the black behind my eyelids) that were slowly coming to life. I knew I had to stay conscious, but not wake myself up entirely, so I tried to stay as calm as possible. The next thing I knew I was in a dream.
Specifically, I found myself in my parent’s old house, in my parents bed, as if I was waking up into a dream. At this point I of course knew I was dreaming, because I had stayed conscious throughout the entire transition, but I was super excited, thinking to myself, “I can’t believe I actually did it! It really works!”
Though I was in the dream, I noticed that it was blurry, like the dream was “buffering” and I was stuck at 320p for a little while, on my way to 4K resolution13. Slowly the scene and the images became clearer and clearer, and I began to interact with my environment. So I thought to myself, “Ok I’m awake in a dream now so I can do whatever I want”, so the first thing I did was walk through a wall straight into another dream.14 I had so much I wanted to do though, and was remembering them one by one.
The next thing I did was fly.15 It took a couple tries, but next thing you know I’m flying! Instead of flying to a certain point in the dream, I’d always wondered if you could fly into outer space straight off the earth in your dream. So I tried, and failed. I could only go so high, as if my dream world had a ceiling and it wasn’t something I could teleport through (maybe it was still buffering).
Anyways, I said to myself “Ok that didn’t work, so lemme try talking to Jesus,” which was one of the other things on my lucid dream “bucket list.” So I started shouting, “Jesus! Jesus!” trying to find him but that didn’t work either.
So I spent a lot of time teleporting through doorways, walking though walls, flying, looking in mirrors, and looking at my hands. Those all have interesting implications in dreams because your hands look weird, your reflection is crazy, etc.
Anyways, the dream world eventually created a story that placed me and my dad at ASU fighting a bunch of convicts that had escaped prison. News reporters had gathered near Tempe Town Lake, documenting the footage of me flying through the air with my dad, like Dragon Ball Z characters. Energy blasts and all. It was CRAAAAZY.
Eventually, I was having so much fun with the story I was in, that my consciousness actually got sucked into the dream. Which is to say, my conscious mind fell asleep, and I was no longer lucid.
What my WILD taught me
First, it taught me that I’d actually been having WILDs my entire life and didn’t know that’s what they were. I believed they were something sinister, so I’d jar myself awake or scream out the name of Jesus as a protective reflex, before they could fully take effect.
That “spinal rocket” I mentioned earlier – I’d experienced that hundreds of times since I was at least 4 years old. I still experience it semi-regularly, but now that I know what it is, I just let it happen and occasionally I’m able to experience another WILD.
Since June 29, 2008, I’ve probably experienced couple dozen (unintentional) WILDs. I’ve only successfully performed an intentional WILD about two more times since then, because it’s actually difficult and time consuming to do. Often times it doesn’t work and you just end up staying awake in bed, when you could be sleeping. Then you feel tired the rest of the day, because you wasted 2-3 hours trying to have a WILD the night before.
Often, the easiest time to do a WILD, and when I’ve had the most unintentional WILDS, is when I wake up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. When I come back to bed, I usually fall asleep pretty quickly and experience hypnagogic hallucinations as I drift back to sleep. Once I feel the spinal rocket, I just let it happen, but because it’s unintentional, and I’m really just trying to go back to sleep, there’s a 90% chance I’ll fall asleep before I make it all the way into the dream phase.
It was actually a difficult process to get myself to believe that what I thought my entire life was demons, was actually just my natural brain doing it’s thing. I’d actually convinced myself that my “spinal rocket” was actually a gift of discernment from the Holy Spirit, because I’d always feel the rocket right before sleep paralysis came on. I considered it to basically be a “demon detecter”. So any time I felt it, I’d start praying and “binding”. 16
Then I remember one time in college, where I had a dream that I was in my prayer spot, kneeling next to my bed, praying and worshipping God. Then the spinal rocket happened (I occasionally feel it even inside a dream), and the entire dream turned yellow. It made no sense to me. How could my “demon detector” go off during a prayer and worship session when I’m enjoying the presence of God?
Some doctrinal shifts, starting in 2008, are what actually got me to be skeptical about what I was taught. I remember having a conversation with a friend in 2008, before this incident, because I’d re-read a story about Jesus casting out a demon from a child. The child was experiencing epileptic symptoms: rolling on the ground, foaming at the mouth. Jesus cast out the demon from him. I basically argued to my friend, that this must mean that epilepsy is actually demonic. Then he revealed to me that his father, who was the pastor of a church, had epileptic seizures that he took medicine for (the medicine worked). One one hand, I felt very ashamed that I’d basically accused my friend’s father of being demon possessed, and on the other hand, I was embarrassed at the conclusions my wacky superstitious upbringing was causing me to make.
I basically had a “Nigerian moment.”
I apologized, and I was able to realize from this man’s character and his love for Jesus, that he obviously wasn’t demon possessed, and the doctrinal idea that born-again Christians being indwelled by the Holy Spirit could be possessed by demons or harassed by them is absolute rubbish. His seizures which were taken care of by medical science, were genetic in nature, not spiritual.
The bad thing about mixing superstition with dreams, is that it creates negative reinforcement in an environment that will literally take that negativity and “run with it,” that environment being your brain as it enters the hypnagogic state. So if you expect to see a monster when you enter sleep paralysis, because your brain is in this state, you often will see a monster. Creating a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy.
Fight or Flight
That’s actually how dreams are. Your brain will use anything that scares you against you in a dream, and anything you believe will happen, actually happens.
For example, as a child, I used to have nightmares where I was being chased by things. Whether it was a monster, or bats, or dogs, or a person. As I got older, and especially after I hit puberty, I stopped running from them. I decided I was going to fight anything that wanted to chase me. Once that decision was made, I never had a chasing dream ever again…to this very day. Since entering college, I can’t say that I really have nightmares anymore. I seem to have outgrown those too.
Why I can lucid dream so easily while others can’t
Based upon the accumulated data of my experience, and my study of the brain in my spare time, I’ve determined that normal human beings have their conscious mind completely knocked-out asleep while the rest of your brain is doing all of it’s funny business like paralyzing you, or unparalyzing you, or transitioning in and out of REM, or while you’re in the middle of a dream. For whatever reason, my conscious mind is able to wake up while a lot of this background stuff is going on, and to an uneducated and uninitiated human being, you’re going to think it’s supernatural or paranormal.
The most obvious way of knowing it’s not demons is this: have you ever seen a demon (or an alien) when you’re wide awake during the day, or even when you’re wide awake at night before you get in bed and attempt to fall asleep? No? Well then, there’s your answer. When Jesus cast out demons, he did it in broad daylight. He didn’t wait to be alone with you in a room while you’re half asleep and nobody else could see.
Everything I experienced was just my brain running maintenance programs that you’re not supposed to be awake for.
They say knowledge is power.
I remember times as a child, when I’d get the feeling of sleep paralysis come over me while I was still barely awake, and I’d scream out “Jesus!” and then be worried about falling asleep again. Like “Really, again? I didn’t even sin this entire day!17 Why is this happening to me?”
It was only as I left behind superstitious false doctrines, beginning in 2008, that I slowly began to accept that what was happening to me had to be natural, not supernatural, because there’s no reason a born again Christian filled with the Holy Spirit, who’s father is a pastor, who reads his bible every day, who has never once dabbled into anything remotely witchcraft related, who’s family would regularly conducted “deliverance,” and repeatedly repented for the sins of our ancestors, who fasted and prayed regularly, who tithed his lunch money (seriously I tithed my lunch money), should ever have this much unwanted experience being paralyzed and “seeing demons” right as you fall asleep or wake up.
Growing older, I’ve noticed how similar I am to my parents in uncanny ways. For example, my mother and I like the same type of music. I notice things that I do that my parents would also do. I notice that I’m emotional because my father is emotional, and I can take things personally that I probably shouldn’t take personally. I notice that I have no time for bullshit, because my mother has no time for bullshit. You’re not going to be able to call me on the phone and sell me on a timeshare, or penny stocks, or a free cruise to Alaska, or your latest Pyramid scheme. It’s just not going to happen.
The fact that my parents had enough experience with these types of sleep phenomena, to warn me about it as a child, clued me into the idea that it was probably genetic. Further research on my part showed that things like sleepwalking do run in families. Fortunately, I did outgrow sleepwalking before puberty.
So now that I have this knowledge, I can help any children that inherit my sleeping superpowers/problems, so that they don’t have to be freaked out by it.
To the Superstitious
Those of you who ignored the Red Pill Alert and read this anyway
This section is heavy on the Hebrew. Babylonians just won’t understand the burden of being a rational, free-thinking African Christian, but I carry it.
Do I believe God can speak to people in dreams? Yes.
And he said, “Hear my words: If there is a prophet among you, I the LORD make myself known to him in a vision; I speak with him in a dream. Numbers 12:6
I’ve had many dreams that have “come to pass.” I don’t talk about them though. I don’t subscribe to manipulating people with that whole “God told me” nonsense.
Superstitious people, especially Africans, tend to think everything is demons or the paranormal.
Having trouble getting pregnant? Demons and ancestral curses…obviously.
Husband left you? Demons.
See, you’re not actually responsible for any of your actions. You don’t have sin nature. Every time you sin it was because the Devil tempted you. You’re a sinner because you sin. It couldn’t possibly be the case that you sin because you’re a sinner. Bacteria and viruses and genetics don’t exist.19
“You quickly realize, that that’s not what the bible teaches. And yet that is the form that the charismatic movement that is now clothed in African attire, that’s what it has taken on. It’s basically saying the same language that has already been there for centuries in Africa, but now giving it a thin veneer of bible verses. You can well understand that if men and women are rushing in throngs to the witch doctor’s den, they will rush in throngs to these so-called churches, because ultimately, it is the same ‘power play’ they are looking for.” Conrad Mbewe
Do I believe the devil or demons can speak to born again Christians in dreams? No. By what authority?
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
So demons have the ability to activate your body’s natural sleep paralysis? How? Do demons have some sort of remote control for you and they press a button? Who gave them the remote?20
I can quote a dozen bible verses that say, “And the LORD appeared to him in a dream,” or “An angel appeared to him in a dream.”
Quote me one, just one, that says, “And Satan appeared to him in a dream.” I’ll wait.
If the Devil or demons want to speak to Christians, they have to do it the exact same way everyone else does. While you’re awake, face to face. If the Devil wants to collect intelligence, he has to do it the same way the CIA does. He’s not omniscient. Needless to say, the Devil probably doesn’t even know who you are unless you’re famous.
One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” Acts 19:15
One of my next few blog posts will probably – out of necessity – be about why Africans in particular, including the wealthy, politicians, the educated… even people holding Ph.D.s are superstitious.
Of course, any non-religious person would deem a religious person superstitious by default, but religious people account for about 90% of the world’s population. Let’s just say that Africans are on a whole other level.
To the Neurologists, Researchers, and Academics
If you’d like to study my weird brain or do a brain scan on me while I enter a WILD, contact me, but I’m expensive.
This is the type of post where you’ll get “Whoa, whoa, be careful there!” messages from well-meaning, but superstitious people. Or at the very least, silent judgement. Especially if you’re a Nigerian.
For example, My parents walked out of the movie Inception, because they thought it was demonic, even though there’s not a single ghoul, monster, or demon in the entire movie.
What you believe about the supernatural determines how you interpret dream and sleep phenomenon. So if you think talking about dreams is delving into sorcery or witchcraft, you and I probably have huge theological differences, and this post isn’t for you. Turn back now.↩
I remember one kid in 7th grade who once blurted out, “Have you ever been in a dream where you know you’re dreaming and you can do whatever you want?” Everybody looked at him like he was crazy, including me. He was a weird kid anyways, and I didn’t want to be associated with him. But on the inside, I was like, “Bro, you have no idea.”↩
Pandey, S. Journal of Neuroscience, May 26, 2004. News release, University of Illinois at Chicago.↩
I once had a very high fidelity dream where I became lucid. I literally walked around just staring at things and touching the grass, because I couldn’t believe that my brain could generate a world as real as the real world. I even felt a cool breeze on my face.↩
This might not seem like the most intuitive way to put it at first, but think of it like this: When you travel close to the speed of light, time slows down for you. A few hour trip for you could mean decades pass on Earth. It’s because on Earth time is moving “more quickly” compared to your time. So people on Earth can experience more than you. Obviously special relativity doesn’t apply to dreams, and there is no actual time dilation, but you can experience what feels like hours in dreams, when only minutes have passed in the real world.↩
The fact that I didn’t experience it during my waking hours should have been my first clue that it wasn’t supernatural.↩
If you ever feel you need to cast something out in Jesus’ name, then cast it out in Jesus’ name. Seriously.↩
Again, it’s not really your body (as far as we know), it’s just the part of your brain that controls sleep paralysis and REM.↩
Sometimes it seems to start everywhere at once.↩
Yes, I had about a year sleep-crying phase from the ages of 6-7. I think it was because of repressed emotions, because I missed my dad, who was still in Nigeria at the time, before he joined us in the USA.↩
I’ve read that sleepwalking happens during NREM, which is actually the deepest phase of your sleep cycle, and it’s very difficult to wake someone up in this phase.↩
It’s phenomena like this that make me think the brain is no more than a biological computer.↩
I had researched prior to this WILD, that you could do this in dreams. Closed doors work the same way. You could open a door in your house, close it behind you, and when you open it again, it could lead you into an entirely new place, or new dream.↩
I remember once reading one of those superstitious Nigerian-authored Christian books that said flying in a dream is demonic. Which is entirely nonsense, because the only reason I even discovered I could fly in dreams was because I was a basketball player and it would happen by accident any time I was having a basketball dream.↩
It’s Charismatic/Pentecostal lingo. Look it up.↩
As a child, I would actually try to go whole days without sinning. And I was taught that if a Christian sins, it opens the door to Satan. False doctrines…↩
No, I’m not kidding. They really believe this. Much of the value of African women is still placed in their ability to bear children, so entire pagan ideologies have sprung up around the bearing of children. It’s all nonsense, but good luck trying to reason with a superstitious person.↩
If you can’t tell by now, this entire paragraph is sarcasm.↩
This is why doctrine matters. The African flavor of Arminianism will lead you to believe you can lose your salvation, and every single time you sin (dozens of times a day) you open up a hole, and Satan is always looking for a “hole” to enter.↩