Insubstantially, as if a mere apparition, I rise up from my slumber. Above my breathing body, gazing downward, I am aware of my incorporeal existence but unaware of what awaits me. I decide to allow this dream to unfold without my own intervention and to simply observe events as they occur.
I remain prone and am borne upward into an alabaster chamber filled with white-robed attendants. Because I am not taking conscious control of the dream, I am filled with curiosity and eager anticipation. And even though I am in a roomful of men whose attention is focused upon me, I feel palpable sensations of utter calm and fearlessness. I wonder what is going to happen next.
Attended to with meticulous care, at times, I simply float above the congregation and at other times I am being carried along through brilliant architectural passageways, everywhere bright and suffused with beams of golden light.
I am being prepared for some mysterious ritual, the nature of which I am unaware. Still lying prone, moving and being moved from chamber to chamber, I am anointed, dressed in golden robes, and surrounded by a saffron glow.
Moving throughout the lambent maze of passageways and tunnels, I have time to reflect upon my situation. Slowly it becomes clear – I am involved in an after-death experience. This ritual is not one of entombment but of moving upward and outward from what must have been a burial chamber. The thought that I have died is curiously devoid of emotion; it is simply a way of describing this particular state of consciousness. Quickly now, the brilliance of the surrounding light increases exponentially and I am bathed in the full warmth and luminance of the sun. I float freely in this in transparent space, content in the knowledge that I have arrived at the end and the beginning of infinite journeys…
Clear that my dream life and my waking life are the same path, I decide to awaken and contemplate my dream from a wakeful point of view. The notion of being lucid and aware of my dreaming while making a conscious decision not to control its direction is novel and exhilarating. It allows me to proceed through a dreamworld with an interest in simply observing what happens. I find I am thrilled the experience holds no hint of fear. Indeed, having no interest in controlling the lucid-dream experience gives me a heightened sense of anticipation for what lies ahead…
First Image: Tullio DeSantis, “What Happens When We Die,” ink drawing, 2007.
Second Image: Sacred Texts of Egypt
Third Image: Dalai Lama quote used at Budge Translation site for
Tibetan Book of the Dead
YouTube Video: Stephen Laberge – Lucid Dreaming p3