Direct Techniques

The main conclusion that an experienced practitioner will come to is that direct techniques are actually easy, and not much more difficult than any other ones. The problems only lies in understanding certain subtleties. As soon as they become clear, results are easy to obtain.

Despite it being constantly emphasized that the free-floating state of mind is of decisive importance, nearly all novices stubbornly look through all the various techniques in search of a silver bullet. However, an advanced practitioner will hardly ever use techniques. He will immediately go for the free-floating state of mind with practically no effort or strain. That’s why the same phrase always comes from the mouths of experienced practitioners: "That’s right, I don’t do anything at all. I simply lie down and wait for lucid dreaming." And it just comes 50-70% of the time. This comes in sharp contrast to some novices who simply waste much time and energy banging their heads against the wall trying to leave their bodies, and as a result only 1-2% of their attempts result in success, which is at best purely incidental.

Let’s take up an example of direct lucid dreaming entrance by the advanced practitioner. lucid dreamingr determines the interesting things he will do in lucid dreaming, lies down at bedtime in an uncomfortable position for sleeping, and simply tries to fall asleep while holding on to the thought that it’d be swell to enter lucid dreaming. That’s all! Three to ten minutes later, and he’s already caught a lapse of consciousness into lucid dreaming. Meanwhile, if he felt that he would fall asleep quickly, he’d use cycles of techniques to keep his conscious mind focused. If, on the other hand, his mind were excessively active, then he would monotonously perform some technique while lying in as comfortable a position as possible for sleep. But in most cases, the quintessence of direct techniques consists in attempting to fall asleep in an uncomfortable position, all the while having the thought of lucid dreaming in the back of one’s mind. Or at least that’s how it’s supposed to be, and that’s just how it often works – for the simple reason that those are the best conditions for having the right kind of prerequisite lapses in consciousness, on the rebound from which lucid dreaming arises. If ten or fifteen minutes go by without result, then lucid dreamingr simply goes to bed or stops with the attempt, as a direct lucid dreaming entrance attempt should be done with enjoyment. If lucid dreamingr is not enjoying himself, then that’s a sign that he’s making mistakes.

Meanwhile, the most important improvement a lucid dreamr can make is in his attitude towards the end goal of an attempt. There’s a reason why he holds on to the thought, "it’d be swell to enter lucid dreaming". That should be in the back of his mind, but not at the center of his attention. The practitioner should be indifferent as to whether or not anything happens. He should let go of control, desire, and the feeling that it’s important – and then everything will work. If he lies down to perform a direct technique with intense desire to enter lucid dreaming right then and there and no matter what, then nothing will happen. There won’t be any lucid dreaming without a cool, indifferent attitude. If there is anxiety or expectation, nothing will happen. An advanced practitioner would not even attempt direct techniques if he felt excessive anxiety or desire regarding lucid dreaming entrance. He only makes attempts when he’s cool and collected, as well as more or less indifferent to the result. Deep down, of course, he’s not indifferent. His desire is deeply held – it is not of the superficial type that physiologically interferes with obtaining results. As soon as the practitioner understands the significance of this principal, the effectiveness of his lucid dreaming entrance attempts will suddenly improve.

The only exception might be using the direct method to enter lucid dreaming in conjunction with the deferred method. In this case, the techniques can take on substantially more importance, and deeply-held intention less importance. This depends on how long one has been awake after sleeping. Such attempts are more similar to the indirect method in terms of effectiveness.

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