What Is Lucid Dreaming? Meaning Of Lucid Dreams Explained


🌙 Written by Stefan Zugor, international lucid dreaming expert and teacher. Learn how to lucid dream in 7 days or less.

Have you ever wondered WHAT is a lucid dream? Maybe you’ve had a dream that you think might be lucid, but you’re not sure about the MEANING of a lucid dream?

Imagine a world, inside your mind, where you can do ANYTHING.


You can do all sorts of things like:

  • Flying
  • Teleporting
  • Exploring weird lands and alien worlds
  • Talking to parts of your mind
  • Interacting with your fantasies and random people
  • Playing out your ultimate adventures
  • And literally anything else you could possibly imagine

What Is Lucid Dreaming?

Lucid dreaming is when your brain knows that you’re in a dream, so it’s possible to control the dream. In order to have a lucid dream, you need to know about how they work and why they happen. You don’t need any special equipment to have a lucid dream.

They can happen by themselves, or you can try to induce them by specifically doing things before bedtime that lead to lucid dreams more often.

How does it work?

Normally, when you dream, you’re not really aware of what’s going on, you can’t actively think about things and make your own decisions. It’s almost like you’re just watching yourself do the actions, but you’re not in control. When you have a lucid dream however, You become aware of yourself, and the fact that you’re dreaming.

You can make decisions, explore and control the dream-world, and pretty much do anything you can imagine. You could fly around the world, meet a celebrity, practice your job interview, or ride around on a giant butterfly; there is no limit.

The reason people are able to have a lucid dreaming experience is that they can ‘wake up their mind’ and experience things while they’re sleeping. Normally when you go to sleep, your brain sort of shuts off, and you’re not aware of what’s going on. With training and practice you can unlock the part of your mind responsible for being ‘aware’ of yourself.

Is Lucid Dreaming Real?

Yes, Lucid Dreaming is very real and it’s been proven time and time again in countless studies, but for some reason it remains a subject of debate among the Western world.

It’s actually been used for thousands of years by Tibetan monks and other cultures as well, but more and more people around the world have started learning it over the years, and recent advances in technology mean that websites like howtolucid.com can pop up and teach a whole new audience about it!

The first scientific evidence of lucid dreaming was published by doctor Keith Hearne, who managed to track the eye movements of people who were in a lucid dream and deliberately moving the eyes (or looking from side to side, up or down) in a SPECIFIC pattern that they’d agreed on beforehand.

Tracking eye movements in sleep

This experiment/proof was known as ‘right to left ocular signals’ and basically meant tracking the eye movements of people while they’re asleep. Since then, handfuls of lucidity research institutes have sprung up, and lots of new dream technology has been created. There’s never been a better time to learn!

On that note, there’s actually a TON of useful technology and devices and all sorts of things you can use these days to help you lucid dream such as:

There’s all sorts of things you can use. We also created several ebooks and courses on lucid dreaming that can help you get into the right mindset, and learn the right skills. 

Can ANYONE learn to lucid dream?

Something lots of people worry about is whether they’re too old to learn to control their dreams. Age really doesn’t matter. By definition, everyone is thought to have at least one lucid dream in their lives, even by total accident. The fact is however, that lucid dreams are a HABIT that MOST people don’t practice.

For that reason, everyone COULD lucid dream, but not everyone WILL because it’s simply a habit that most of us don’t practice. If you actually want to do it, and want to learn it and create the habit in yourself, then it’s not only possible, it’s easy and fun! Just like any new habit, it can take a few weeks to form, but it gets easier over time.

At first, you’re sort of reprogramming your mind to do something it likely hasn’t done before. That’s fine, but just be aware that for beginners, it might take a bit of trial and error, practice and patience. Then, the more you do it, the easier it becomes because you’re training your mind to be able to do it!

What Does Lucid Dreaming Feel Like?

Lucid dreaming feels pretty good. It doesn’t hurt, and it doesn’t make you feel tired in the morning, despite what some people seem to believe. If you REALLY have a lucid dreaming experience, you’ll wake up feeling peaceful, motivated and refreshed. It doesn’t really alter how well you sleep.

What it DOES do though, is help your MIND feel better.

You’ll wake up with the beautiful memories of what you’ve just done, and it feels so very real. In fact, to your brain, it’s EXACTLY the same as if you’d really done whatever you dreamed about.

The brain can’t tell the difference between imagined experiences and dreams, and REAL experiences. That’s why it’s so important to watch what you think, because your thoughts run your life. But that’s a topic for another article or maybe even another website.

What are the DANGERS of lucid dreaming?

I’m sure you’re probably wondering:

  • Is lucid dreaming safe?
  • Are there any dangers of lucid dreams?
  • Can it hurt your mind or make you feel worse?

Don’t worry. Lucid dreaming is perfectly safe, normal and natural. In fact, it’s good for you. It won’t hurt and it certainly isn’t dangerous. All you’re doing is encouraging your conscious mind to remain awake while your body falls asleep. 

This just lets you get inside the dreaming process that happens every night to all of us ANYWAY. All you’re doing is being more aware of it. And the side effect of that of course, is that your conscious mind gets to experience the dream as if it were a real world.

And subjectively, that’s a HUGE deal. To our conscious minds, that feels like we’ve just become gods, and we’re exploring a brand new alien world or universe, where we’re in charge. But in reality all we’re doing really is just being more aware of the dreams we would have had anyway.

The real shocker, is that these dreams with all of their vivid detail and intricate storylines would have happened anyway and most of us would have just forgotten them! It’s crazy to think of all the millions of hours of lost of forgotten dreams that humanity has gone through!

We wrote another article about the potential dangers of lucid dreaming however, which you should check out if you’re worried. 

How long does it take to learn to control your dreams?

It takes anywhere between 1 and 30 nights, sometimes a little more.

Don’t worry though, we’ll explain some things you can do to make it happen much faster than that. Just check the bottom of this post but don’t rush. Read the tips and questions first, they’re important!

It really depends on the individual, and how their mind works, but by practicing the right things (the 30 day bootcamp is a GREAT place to start) you’ll easily build the habit and become one of the many lucid dreamers of the world.

While it might take a bit of patience at the start, when you actually have that FIRST lucid dream, the experience alone will be enough to addict you to it for LIFE. It’s really that incredible. It’s like you’re walking around inside your own mind, and you can control the entire universe with a click of your fingers.

Reasons To Learn How To Lucid Dream

Lucid Dreaming as mentioned above is the ability to become self aware in your dreams. That’s the basics of it, but it can be used for many, many things. (We have a list of things you could do in a lucid dream, as well as a list of the benefits). There are many reasons you should want to learn this skill:

Here are the main reasons. 

1: Lucid dreaming is the ultimate escapism

It can be used as a way to escape from the things in your waking life that you might not like.

It provides a way of being in your own world and not having to worry about things like paying your bills or your boring job, (for a while at least). It can be used to relax after work or to help you get a better nights sleep.

A beautiful beach

It’s so very easy to just enter a lucid dream, and go wherever you want. You can soar above the clouds, become your favorite animal, or talk to your most adored celebrity or lost family member. The possibilities are endless and it’s a perfect secret escape.

2: It means you’re not wasting your sleep

One of the great reasons lots of people tend to love lucid dreaming is that it’s a way of taking BACK your time. Everyone sleeps every night, but you don’t have to just lay there doing nothing. You can DREAM and do incredible things, and that’s what attracts lots of people to lucidity.

Every night people go to sleep, and every night everyone dreams. You read that right, everyone dreams every night. That being known, the question ‘Why waste your dreams’ arises. If everyone is dreaming every night, and Lucid Dreaming is real and proven then what good reason could ANYONE have for not wanting to learn it?!

Some more reasons to learn to lucid dream

There are many reasons and we’ve covered the main benefits of lucid dreams in another post, but here are the main things that people get from lucidity and controlling their dreams:

  • Improved quality of sleep so you’ll feel more refreshed in the morning
  • Reconnecting with lost loved ones, so you can tell them that one special message or even just touch them again!
  • Learning (and improving at) real life skills
  • Doing incredible, impossible things like flying and teleporting
  • Exploring your mind for inspiration
  • Overcoming fears and phobias so you don’t need to be held back any more by silly fears in your mind
  • Healing emotional damage like PTSD
  • Talking to celebrities and famous people throughout history so you can get inspiration and motivation!
  • Having sex with anyone you want including recreating your ultimate fantasies
  • Playing out your fantasies and aspirations

And many more.

You’ll find that as you learn more and more, you just sort of discover your own path and what you want to do with it. You can start off doing the common things but then eventually you might want to do your own thing that is personal to YOU.

Always had a dream about running a cookie shop? You can simulate it in a lucid dream and see how it would go! Practice talking in front of huge crowds of people, or become an atom taking part in a chemical reaction. The possibilities are limitless, you have only to take the first step. [/sociallocker]

How Do You Induce A Lucid Dream?

To actually have a lucid dream, you’ll need to start writing your dreams down and meditating every morning. Once you’ve been doing that for a few weeks, you can start to do what’s known as ‘reality checks’. This is where you test your reality and discover whether or not you’re dreaming.

A good example of a reality check would be to take your finger and try and PUSH it through the palm of your other hand. In waking life of course, the finger will never go through, right? It always feels that same resistance and tension. But in the dream, the finger WILL go through.

And the moment it does, you can conclude that you’re dreaming!

At that moment, you’re what we call ‘lucid’. You can control the dream, decide what to do and direct the adventure to be whatever you like! It’s a beautiful situation, and there’s nothing really quite like it in waking life.

What Is The Meaning Of A Lucid Dream?

A lucid dream is a dream in which you can control what’s happening. In a lucid dream, you might be able to fly or stop the action from happening altogether. If you’re having this type of dream, it means that your brain is aware that you’re dreaming and can overcome certain obstacles.

This is a very healthy thing to do because it helps prevent nightmares and sleep problems.

In terms of what it MEANS, it really can mean anything. Probably it just indicates that you’re becoming more ‘self aware’ and in control of your mind.

What Do My Dreams Mean?

A dream is your brain’s way of sorting through information and creating patterns. Dreams might help you work out a problem or process what happened during the day. Some people believe that our dreams are a way for our unconscious to work through things we can’t while we’re awake. Dreams also give us symbols for things in our life.

For example, if you dream about a dog it could mean that you need to allow some negative thoughts from the past to go away.

Unblock Your Pineal Gland To Lucid Dream

Your pineal gland is in the middle of your brain. It’s like the control tower of your brain. When it’s blocked, it can’t release melatonin. Melatonin is important for sleep and dreaming. If your pineal gland isn’t releasing melatonin, you can’t fall asleep or have lucid dreams.

The pineal gland is a tiny gland that regulates the release of melatonin, a hormone that helps you sleep.

When the pineal gland is blocked, it can’t do its job and your whole body feels different. When the pineal gland is unblocked, it can do its job and you feel refreshed.

There are many ways to unblock the pineal gland including exercise on an empty stomach, meditation, and listening to certain types of music. Things like binaural beats of a package I created called ‘Shifting Vibrations’ will help.

Can You Get Stuck In A Lucid Dream?

Sometimes when you are in a dream, you can’t seem to get out of it. But if you want to leave the dream before it ends, you can tell yourself “I’m dreaming” or pinch yourself in order to wake up. Lucid dreams are different because you know that it’s a dream and can control what happens in the dream.

So, in that sense you can’t get ‘stuck’ inside a lucid dream, bbut it can sometimes FEEL like you’re stuck.

Is Lucid Dreaming Scary?

Lucid dreaming is when you’re asleep and you know that you’re dreaming, and can therefore control what happens in your dream. Sometimes this might be scary, but not always! For example, you might have a lucid dream where you have a monster chasing after you.

You could then decide to fly away instead of running away from the monster, or to punch it in the face.

Learn How To Lucid Dream

There are lots of things to learn about lucid dreaming.

It’s fairly straightforward but it can be tricky to actually get it to WORK. Most people understand roughly how it’s supposed to happen and what they need to do, but they can’t get the techniques to work.

For that reason, we’ve created a detailed 30 day bootcamp course to show you exactly what to practice on each day for 30 days. Most people go through this and have their first lucid dream within about two weeks, and then go on to have many more.

I know you’re probably feeling a bit overwhelmed.

Maybe you just came to this page after searching for the definition of lucid dreaming.

Maybe you came here after hearing a song (Lucid Dreams) or watching a film (Inception). Whatever the reason, the time is right for you to learn this skill. Don’t be scared. It’s an easy thing to learn, so let me guide you and help you learn to control your dreams!

See you on the other side.