Nothing but a myth?

I’m doing a rather thorough school project on lucid dreaming and I’m in need of some information.

Have you or anyone you heard of had problems with telling reality apart from dreams as an effect of excessive practice of lucid dreaming?

This is surely the most widespread rumour concerning LDing and I want to know if there is any credability to this at all or if it’s just something we can file under BUSTED.

If anyone of you guys happens to have any additional information on the subject that you could link I would really appreciate it. :smile:

I assume it could be possible to mix up reality and lucid dreams if you suffer from schizophrenia, since people with that disorder already have a rather messed up view of reality.

But a mentally sane person?
Probably not, since lucid dreams do after all contain a lot of clues that you are dreaming, like being in an unfamiliar location, seeing things chance in bizarre ways (like for example a house turning from red into yellow in a few seconds and stuff like that) and just the general surrealistic, dreamlike feel.
You almost always find clear proof that you are in a dream in just a few seconds if you are looking for it.

I see Lucid Dreams as just normal dreams, except that you know you are dreaming.
It sure has some very cool possibilities that you can’t do in a normal dream, but that’s because you don’t think about doing them in a ND.
Saying you confuse reality with dreams by practising LDing is like saying you would confuse the two if you dream to much :tongue:
Except obviously if you have some thing like schizophrenia.

Look into this post:

I can’t call say i’ve had real trouble teling dreams apart from waking life. Although sometimes i’ve had extreme amounts of FA’s which after which I would finally wake up, and just lie there for 10 minutes, figuring out if I was finally awake or not.

I don’t think there’s any evidence to say that excessive lucid dreaming will cause such a problem. Heck, I didn’t even think it was possible to excessively lucid dream (unless it consumes your life and you purposefully sleep a lot just to LD :neutral: ). Dreams are just too different from reality for it to just ‘meld’ with reality.

Also, as a nursing student, I can make a guess that schizophrenics would not be able to lucid dream at all. Of course, it depends on the severity: for someone who is treated or have a mild case, they could probably lucid dream. But for someone who has severe schizophrenia, the disturbances they experience during the day would cause sleep disturbances while they sleep and in their dreams, so chances of lucidity there would be very unlikely. That’s my educated guess, so i’m happy for someone to ‘educatedly’ prove me wrong :tongue:

I would say, it depends, as you must use more precise term.

Lucid dreams changed my view of what reality is.
My dreams are real as far as your mind is concerned, so both waking and dreams are part of reality, dreaming you fly and flying is the same as far as your brain is concerned, and the experience you get.

A more correct question would be : does some people can’t make distinction between waking and dream life ? That, I would respond, in waking life, today you might know that what happened this night was a dream.
But 2 years later, it can happen that you think such dream really happened.

Humans create false memories and forget things. Our brain is not as reliable as what we want to know, and we distort always reality sane or not.
“Thinking fast and slow” by Daniel Kahneman, introduces some of this flaws.

It happens that I fogret sometimes whether the source of an information comes from reality or from a dream I made long time ago. An information is an information, and it happens you forget the source, as much as you would forget the author of a well know quote.

But I suspect the goal of your question is whether someone jumped from a building in waking life thinking he was in dreaming life.

Incorrect. Firstly, schizo has no interaction with LDing in that manner. Personally, i find it quite the opposite of what you just said. There are two people in my life that are very close to me that are a part of the schizo spectrum (infact, both of them are members of LD4All), and LDing actually seems far more common than the average other person. Not to mention far more controllable. Also, there are absolutely no signs of having struggles determining lucid dreams from reality. A schizo issue does not seem to persist in the dream world, nor does the dream world have any impact in real life.

This is of course, always subject to individual cases. But from personal exposure from a couple sources… The schizo spectrum is irrelevant to this question.

-It’s 4am, and i have yet to sleep, so i probably presented that poorly… I can probably do better when my brain isn’t scrambled.

One of my closest friends who LDs quite regularly sometimes feels like this, but only because he is quite prone to FA’s - like Shadow of a Day’s case. But since those come with a loss of lucidity, wouldn’t that have more to do with ND’s than LD’s?

I cannot refer you to any research on this topic. Actually, I’ve never heard of LDers having a problem discerning between waking life and dreams—though dreams can seem like waking life. You can quote me for your paper, though.

Most of my lucid dreams are even more bizarre than my non-lucid, “normal” dreams, so it would be quite difficult for me to confuse my waking life with my dream life. In fact, most lucid dreamers that I know intentionally make their dreams bizarre. Commonly, lucid dreams fly around, for instance. When I perform reality checks (a regular part of many LDer’s practice) I’m never in doubt about whether I can fly in real life. I would never try by leaping off a building—I don’t even do that in a dream because, after all, what if I’m not dreaming? I test whether I’m able to fly simply by jumping off the ground. In waking life, I fall immediately downward in accordance with gravity. In dreams, I might linger a little too long in the air or float down or I might zoom straight off.

Yes, dreams can feel quite real. I have convinced myself that I’m really awake/not dreaming when I was, in fact, dreaming because the sun on my skin, the hair on my arms, etc. all felt so, so real. But I’ve never been convinced that I’m actually dreaming when I’m in the physical state. I have questioned, but I’ve never had a reality check succeed. (My reality checks include: attempting to fly, pushing my right thumb through my left hand, asking myself if anything is unduly strange about my environment, etc.)

Of course I sometimes see very strange things while I’m awake. Yesterday, driving downtown, I saw groups of people on the street in their underwear. This was strange, but then I remembered that my city was having its first annual “Underwear Run.” The strangeness had an easy explanation. In a dream, the same might happen and I might rationalize it away, saying to myself, “Oh yeah, the Underwear Run is today,” while, in reality, there isn’t any such thing. But usually, dream strangeness is more marked. For instance, I once went lucid while staring at an abstract painting in my house which was animated and swirling around. As it slowly dawned on me that I was dreaming, I wondered whether I might be mistaken—maybe this was “one of those moving paintings.” But my memory won out and I saw that I was dreaming.

Lucidity in dreams, and while awake, is distinguished by a working memory, the direction of attention and the capacity to reason. So, while awake, if a person became confused and convinced that he was actually dreaming, it would probably only happen by the impairment of memory, attention or reason.

To be able to lucid dream effectively, you need to know how to tell the difference between the dream world and reality (at least that’s how I see it). So I’d say that’s just a Hollywood myth.

Hmmm… I would say that schizophrenia would be not being able to tell imagination from reality, so anyone that lucid dreams becomes “less” schizophrenic, since they can now distinguish the two. Lucid dreaming is becoming more aware, not less.

i always saw lucid dreaming as a type of increasing awareness. isn’t that really what it is? you are learning to tell when you are in a dream, and when you aren’t. so learning what is real, and what is not. that being said i don’t see how it makes any sense that having more interaction with lucid dreaming could possibly make it harder to tell the difference with life. that is very contradictory.

and i don’t know specifically about schizophrenia. i don’t really know anything about that schizotype, but i do know a lot about one of the types of schizo and i think it helps a lot. especially when it helps put the idea of “is what im seeing real?” in your head. instead of the default of “i’m seeing it, so it must be real!” which is kindof what schizo seems to me.

yes. that’s what it seems like to me.

i would have to say that the only way this mix up could really happen is if you’re too involved and too obsessive over lucid dreaming, which has nothing to do with being schizo at all, nor does it even have to do with baseline practices of lucid dreaming.

not really that different than the whole “violence in media makes a person violent”, which isn’t true. that’s the individuals choice and fault if that happens.

It could be possible to confuse dreams with waking life if you assume too quickly that you are awake.
This has happened to me several times, I think everything feels so convincingly real that I accept it for the physical world without giving it a second thought - and then I wake up shortly after that and feel like a fool. :tongue:

However, I have never been completely sure that waking life has been a dream, simply because I want clear proof that I am dreaming before I dare to accept it for a dream, and it is much easier for a dream to fake waking life than it is for waking life to fake a dream.