DISCLAIMER: The information presented on this page is for educational purposes only. Please consult your primary care physician or doctor before making any changes to your health and / or nutritional lifestyle. The information presented here is not for individuals who are unable have a normal 8 hour sleep cycle including but not limited to those who experience insomnia and other sleep disorders. Proceed at your own risk. I wasn't a big lucid dreamer, but then one night... I met an angel in a dream. Changed my life forever. I read everything I could about lucid dreaming and astral projecting and practiced a lot. The most important thing I learned was when's the best time to practice. Here's what's worked out for me the best. =D Last updated Feb 16, 2021.
Table of Contents
What is Lucid Dreaming / Astral Projection? How it works Astral Projection Signs Segmented Sleep Method More Tips My Favorite Books Overall
WHAT IS LUCID DREAMING / ASTRAL PROJECTION?
Lucid dreaming is when you are dreaming and you realize that you are dreaming. Then you can do whatever you want in your dream like levitating, flying around, copying yourself, going to outer space, the possibilities are endless! It's usually a super fun and exhilarating experience.
Astral projection is when you're awake and you consciously feel your dream/astral/energy body separating from your physical body. It's a very bizarre experience. Your astral body is apparently always "tethered" to your physical body through the "silver cord" which some people say is actually a worm hole emanating from your pineal gland. You can't loose your astral body. If anything ever happens, you simply snap back through the silver cord, pop back into your body and wake up instantaneously. You can apparently travel through time and space and visit all sorts of people and places in an astral projection.
So what is the difference in awareness between a lucid dream and an astral projection? According to Luis Minero in his book "Demystifying the Out-Of-Body Experience," we experience a lucid dream when we have about 20% to 40% awareness and we experience an astral projection when we have about 60% to 80% awareness, and between 40% to 60% we experience a mixture of the two. And yes, you can increase you're awareness in a lucid dream and turn it into an astral projection. Luis Minero's book helped explain a lot of things for me and I encourage you to take a look at it. He explains many parts of the experience and also provides a lot of useful tips too. However, after practicing for a while, I've settled for the two methods I describe in the sections below.
I've had so many awesome experiences lucid dreaming and astral projecting. I've dreamt about several of my past lives and have had all sorts of wild adventures like riding a polar bear and going to outer space. I've astral projected and flown to different places. One time I even felt like I dreamt 40 years worth of a past life in one night! Just all sorts of awesome and memorable experiences. Be sure to check out all my wild stories on my journal!
HOW IT WORKS
The very first thing your body tries to do when you go to sleep is knock out to stage 4 deep sleep. So this is why trying to lucid dream when you first go to bed is the worst time to practice.
But as the night progresses, your deep sleep keeps getting shorter and shorter while your R.E.M. sleep keeps getting longer and longer. It's almost as if during the first half of your sleep, your body is resting and during the second half, your mind is resting (through dreaming).
So the best time to practice is anytime after the first 4 to 5 hours of sleep once your body is fully rested. This is the time when your body is the most relaxed and your mind is teetering between R.E.M. sleep and waking up.
Practicing at the right time is the bulk of the work!
ASTRAL PROJECTION SIGNS
So this is what happens. You're laying down, relaxing and all of sudden:
image from the International Academy of Consciousness
-you feel a sort of numbness or buzzing in your skin
-you hear all sorts of strange sounds, like going through all sorts of random radio stations really fast
-your body is frozen and you can only move your eyes ("sleep paralysis")
-you feel or hear other beings, animals or energies in your room ("hypnagogic allucinations")
-your body feels all liquidy like water and then you feel like parts of your body are starting to float
-your mind is spacing in and out of sleep
It's all super bizarre! These have got to be the weirdest things I've ever experienced. And that's normal, it's just that we usually don't feel any of this stuff because our mind goes to sleep first before our body does. Overall, remember, the number one rule is to stay calm and let your experience play it's course. You'll be lucid dreaming before you know it!
The bottom line is, you want to be as comfortable as possible, as still for as long as possible without letting your mind fall asleep. The dream body numbness it's not the kind of numbness you get when you're putting pressure on a certain part of your body that's preventing your blood from circulating!! You don't want to do that. Also, if a part of you is ever uncomfortable, like an itch in your nose, do what you have to do to get comfortable, but then try to keep still.
The sounds are super strange too! You may hear like you're going through all sorts of radio stations really fast or you might hear chattering you can't really make out.
I once even had sleep paralysis and felt a tiger creeping into my room and was breathing right on my face. Totally freaked me out but I finally remembered to stay calm, waited for the experience to pass and the lucid dream started shortly afterwards.
Here's another great page that describes the astral projection experience and addresses some myths.
SEGMENTED SLEEP METHOD
This is the method I use the most nowadays. Essentially, you find a way to wake up some time after your first 4 hours of sleep and go back to sleep. You can do this by setting an alarm or drinking lots of water before going to bed. You can also set several alarms so that you wake up and go back to sleep several times during one sleep cycle (my favorite). Here's one example:
-Go to sleep.
-Set an alarm to wake you up 5 or 6 hours into your sleep.
-Go back to sleep facing up.
-Relax, release all the tensions in you body.
-Stay completely still and try to keep your mind awake.
If I go back to sleep sideways, I almost always fall asleep. Setting an alarm to wake me up several times (multi-segmented sleep) and going back to sleep sideways works great for increasing my lucid dreaming and dream recall. However, if I want to try and have an astral projection, I always go back to sleep facing up. I try to keep by mind awake by focusing on what I feel in my body, my breathing or cycling soothing phrases in my mind like:
"Let your body and your brain go to sleep like they do every night. It's okay. But your mind doesn't have to go to sleep. Your mind exists outside your body. Your mind can stay right here and observe how your body falls asleep naturally...
...So let go of all the tensions in your face, in your neck and your entire body.
...Let your body change position if it wants to. Yes go ahead, scratch your head and that itch on your nose. Just let your body do whatever it usually does as it falls asleep. But your mind doesn't have to go to sleep..."
It's okay to take care of your itching and scratching :) and finding the position you're most comfortable with, but the goal is to eventually lay super still. It usually takes me about 45 minutes of being completely still before I start experiencing an astral projection. What's happening is that you're tricking your body into thinking that you actually fell asleep by remaining super still, so you naturally start having the transition into sleep experience! ^_^*
In the beginning it's common to end up falling asleep facing up, but the more you practice, the better you get at keeping your mind awake. It's also common that you end up falling asleep but wake up right before you astral project. That's happened to me several times. Don't be discouraged! Just keep setting your alarm every morning you want to practice and you will eventually have an astral projection this way. Simply waking up 5 or 6 hours into your sleep is the biggest factor for increasing your lucid dreaming ability over time!
-When you wake up the first time, do something that increases your awareness like breathing some fresh air or doing some kind of exercise. This way you'll be more lucid when you go back to your dream / astral projection. :)
-Whenever you wake up, try to stay still and recall as much of your dreams as you can. Then write everything down in a dream journal. Then review your recent dreams before going back to sleep. This makes it easier for your mind to be lucid because it is already expecting to enter into dream / astral projection state. :)
-Having a dim, dark, cool room. Consider getting blackout curtains so that you can sleep in longer. :)
MY FAVORITE BOOKS
These are my favorite books on lucid dreaming and astral projecting:
Bob Monroe's books are some of the trippiest, most fulfilling books I've ever read!!! ^_^; It's best when you read them in order.
Luis Minero: Demystifying the Out-Of-Body Experience
I hope you found the information on this page exciting and useful! Feel free to send me any questions you may have. I welcome your comments and awesome dream experiences below! Happy travels and Godspeed!! ^_^