Have you ever tried yoga nidra to get lucid in your dreams? Yoga nidra is an excellent practice for wake-induced lucid dreaming, or WILD. In yoga nidra, the body sleeps (rests in deep relaxation) while the mind remains effortlessly lucid; effortlessly aware.
An ancient tantric practice of conscious deep sleep, yoga nidra is a profound form of meditation. This alert, deeply relaxed state helps us to balance lucidly between the worlds of wake and sleep. It’s easier than sitting meditation: our body falls asleep every night, so we are deeply familiar with this process.
Lucid dreamers find that with the right affirmations and guidance, yoga nidra can become a wonderful way of remaining consciously aware while falling asleep, so that they immediately enter a wake-induced lucid dream (WILD).
Yoga nidra also helps us with lucid dream stabilisation. We practise steady lucid awareness in this deeply relaxed state.
A yoga nidra session is a fantastic way of surfing hypnagogic imagery and learning to confidently navigate liminal spaces such as the lucid void and sleep paralysis. It’s a beautiful tool for exploring consciousness.
I’m teaching live yoga nidra groups again via Zoom starting January 14, 2021. Some people prefer to be guided by a voice, but you can also practise yoga nidra on your own. Here are some tips, adapted from one of the practices in The Art of Transforming Nightmares:
How to do Yoga Nidra for Lucid Dreaming and WILD
- Lie down comfortably on your back. If you’re someone who falls asleep quickly, lie on a yoga mat rather than in bed. Close your eyes.
- Relax with some regular, deep breaths. Feel your body grow heavy. If you like, you can do a body scan, bringing your attention to each of the different parts of your body and consciously relaxing them. With every exhalation, you release any tension and allow your thoughts to slow.
- Notice your mind beginning to drift slightly. You may become aware of light forms advancing and receding, or geometric shapes. Strange, vivid imagery may appear. Stay aware; observe any imagery as if it’s a surrealist movie, without getting attached to it. You may experience sensations of floating or falling, or hear random noises or voices. These images and sensations are all a natural part of the hypnagogic state: relax and observe with detachment. Notice as your body awareness shifts: at some point, when you become deeply relaxed, you will be unable to feel it unless you try to.
- The moment when you can’t feel where your body begins and ends signals a golden threshold: you are floating on the very cusp of sleep, so be alert and don’t allow yourself to be sucked in by beguiling dreamlike imagery. Stay present to this threshold state; stay lucidly aware. This is wonderful practice for stabilising lucid dreams so they last longer.
- Stay present in this floating, bodiless state for as long as you like. While here, you may wish to focus on a past dream you had, and mentally re-enter it. Vividly experience the imagery and sensations of your past dream, and stay lucid as the imagery spontaneously moves and changes. This is one way of moving consciously into the dream state—effectively remaining conscious throughout the process of falling asleep—and having a wake-induced lucid dream (WILD). You could also imagine your lucidity as a powerful tiger (or any other animal of your choice). Leap onto the back of your tiger and let it carry you into an amazing dream adventure. Or simply let a new dream form around you, and you will be lucidly present within this new dream.
See here for the next “Yoga Nidra for Lucid Dreaming” live online workshops and the “Transformative Lucidity” online workshops in Jan 2021. The transformative lucidity course is a prerequisite for the Deep Lucid Dreaming online course that starts in March. Spaces are limited for maximum benefit to participants. I’m also about to release a video and audio course on “Yoga Nidra for Lucid Dreaming, Healing & Blissful Sleep” and will link to that when it’s available.