I don’t doubt that lucid dreaming exists, and it seems reasonable to think that it offers access to parts of one’s mind or experience that are usually occulted.
I don’t challenge the value as an exploration of one’s inner self. I train my memory solely because I am interested. I’ve gotten through a professional career without much help from tecnique and while I wish I had had that then, there is no pressing need now. I too am interested in exploring my mind and seeing what I can do with it.
But when I ask what benefits this yields apart from the value of the exercise itself, I am told you can solve all sorts of problems, remold your character and solve great mysteries… It’s too much. It’s a Snake Oil sale. When I ask what “practical” results this technique facilitates. What concrete, demonstrable results are there, I get anecdotes about other people. These are bright red flags for bullshit.
Now, to be clear, just because something is being misrepresented, it doesn’t mean it’s all bullshit. But it does mean you have to look hard and skeptically to find the kernel.
The claim that one can simply remodel one’s personality, as if you were under the hood with a wrench and could just move things around at will. I dismiss as unfounded and absurd. This is a very big claim. It’s an extraordinary claim and it requires extraordinary evidence. Personality and habits are very hard to change. And for good reason. The brain protects itself and its habits. They are valuable. They represent your knowledge of the world. In memory work we find ourselves fighting this very barrier. The brain needs to forget, it resists taking on new baggage for no obvious reason. I need to memorize the squares up to 100? Really? I’m busy Get lost!
I can ask any question of my Lucid Dream. That would be interesting for sure. But what kind of answer would one get and would it be any wiser than the one I get when I’m awake? Can I ask my dream for the proof to Goldbach’s Conjecture? A famous unsolved problem. I doubt he knows any more on the subject than I do.
If I ask him about myself, why would he be any more honest, any less deceived than I am now.
There has been no end of these self-help/psycho/mystical that make you get better at everything.
Nobody knows what “better” person is. If people report finding themselves more fullfilled, or more aware after mastering this, there’s no way of assessing this or how long it lasts.
Is there any reliable evidence that Lucid Dreaming can improve any practical skill or help one acquire it faster? Not breathless anecdotes about other people reported by enthusiastic adherents.
LD has been around in the West for a long time. It was a fad about 25 years ago. Yet, I have not come across a single individual who told me that Lucid Dreaming changed his life. By now the results should be out. We should have had a generation of people who had benefited from this technique and wanted to bring others on board. Instead, it went away quietly until the next fad.
Dreaming techniques have been used in many cultures. The are important for religious significance, prophecies and perhaps meditation etc… Do any of these cultures prescribe LD as a way of improving your archery? Your business acumen? Do any of the ancients prescribe dream methods for memorization. Back in the day memory palaces were not a hobby. Before the printing press they were vital.
I too am interested in LD. I think it’s fascinating. I’m very skeptical of all the BS. Perhaps Morley knows what he’s talking about but I’m convinced a lot of people don’t.