My Dream Yoga Practice – Looking at your Hands Posture

Henna Wedding Hands August 2003

I have been working with dream yoga for many years. This is an ancient practice in which one seeks to activate lucid dream states for the purposes of exploring ourselves as more than what we are told we are in this perceptually limited consensus reality. 

I want to post some of my experiences with my dream yoga practice because I find this work exciting, gratifying, and healing. Lucid dreaming is a popular subject today, happily, and there are many good sites that offer valid information so I won’t repeat what can be found elsewhere. (Like this one) My purpose here is to describe my personal dream yoga practice in which I have been somewhat successful in attaining lucid dream states. I offer what I have learned as a guide for others on a similar path.

The first goal of the dream yoga practice is to wake up in a dream – to become aware that you are dreaming without waking up. I became interested in doing this years ago, like many others, from reading the Carlos Castaneda books. One of the teachings Don Juan conveyed, as I remember it, included an initial exercise in which you train yourself to look at your hands in a dream in order to trigger lucidity.

Years ago I set my intention to accomplish this  “yoga posture” and finally I was able to do it. It is important to understand that the dream yoga practice  is not a linear process. It is not quite like practicing Hatha Yoga, in which the physical body is a necessary instrument that is rooted within the laws of gravity and dwells within a reality that necessitates a linear perception of time.

In the dream yoga we are practicing the development of what my teacher called the astral body. This is an aspect of ourselves that is able to navigate the dream realm. Time in this realm does not work at all like time appears to work in the physical world. Neither does gravity but I will get into that in a later post. So my dream yoga practice has moved in cycles of time that included great progress for a moment and then produced nothing for long periods. Practice and breakthroughs came in spurts of exciting access to lucidity and then nothing but garbage in/garbage out dreams spanning days, months, and even years.

Anyway, one day it happened that I was able to remember in a dream to lift my hands and look at them, only then to promptly wake up! Eventually, I was able to get some mastery of this dream yoga posture and one day I succeeded in remaining  asleep after looking at my hands. I was so delighted that I didn’t wake up that I then promptly woke up at the realization I hadn’t woke up!

So it went like that until one day I was able to both wake up in the dream and stay asleep. I had gotten somewhere in my dream yoga practice and then I was able to take it to another level in which I was like a kid in a candy store. Once I realized I could stay consciousness in my dreams, I set off to explore new worlds as often as the opportunity allowed. Next, flying!

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