As we know from earlier chapters, the Nothing which is the door to Everything is a portal in and out of every experience we have, no matter how finely you break experience down into its variably-sized bits. For example, you might experience transitioning through the Nothing on the way in and/or out of a so-called dream or other unworlding experience. On the other hand, right now with physical eyes wide open you might simultaneously open your mind's eye and see the Nothing staring you in the face while you read this. It's quite a sight, a mind-bender, since they're both there and both real. A certain amount of Noticing sessions will prepare you for this experience. I'd call this an open-eyes version of Frank Kepple's slat effect, the sort of thing I vaguely recall Castaneda writing about.
Making the transition in or out of the Nothing is what triggers lucidity. Lucidity is a knowing of who and where you are. And now you're thinking, Yeah, but, isn't lucidity just when you know you're dreaming?
Well no, not according to the dictionary, and not according to what you must realize if you think for a second that the word "dream" is just a gloss, a word that refers to a real thing but does not actually refer to what that thing really is. I promised to do away with glosses like "dream" early in this tome, because they lead to all kinds of false assumptions, and let me tell you, doing away with the word "dream" is more challenging by far than doing away with the word "OBE" for example. That's because everybody knows we really dream, it's a totally universal experience, albeit ill-defined and variously interpreted. But unworlding is still only believed in by maybe a third to two-thirds of the population. So it's a little easier to rename. So far I don't have any idea what to substitute for the word "dream".
Lucidity has nothing to do with dreaming. It is the act of waking up and remembering who you are. That is a transition state, the act of going from one state of awareness to another. Which is why beginners, upon becoming lucid in a dream--i.e. realizing who they are--tend to simultaneously wake up in bed with their eyes closed. Not realizing that they are in the Nothing, and that's why it's dark! The "eyes closed" thing is just an interpretation of the Nothing that the 2-3-4 mind is fond of; the Nothing is the reality behind the experience, and the closed eyes thing is just a gloss for the same experience. You need to know this so that next time you wake up from a so-called dream, you will know what is accessible to you at that moment: infinity!
Granted, it is at this point that we so often desperately need to jump out of bed and pee. So let me tell you a story, and it might help a little. All my life I have had less bladder control than the people around me. All night I am up and down from the bed, peeing maybe six times every night. I even went to a urologist once to see what was wrong with me, and after he tortured me enough to make me swear off urology, he informed me that there was nothing wrong with me that was detectable to modern science. So I said, "Maybe it's psychological," and he replied, "Well I can't help you with that," which I mentally translated to, "My golf game awaits, get off my table and pay me."
This problem never seemed to get any better until I started my unworlding practice. But I had an idea, and oddly enough it worked. I tried not peeing so often while awake. And guess what? After a few days of teaching my mind that my body was able to experience a steadily expanding bladder without hourly trips to the bathroom, it wore off on my sleeping attitude and I stopped waking up to pee every hour or two. Several times I even slept through the night without waking up at all. Which totally screwed up my practice, because we need awakenings in the night; they are the lifeblood of the unworlding practice.
So I hope that helped. Train your bladder to be less sensitive, the easy way: by doing it while you're awake.
As Michael Raduga reminds us, when we wake up from a dream, we are already "in the phase," that is, unworlded. Contrary to popular belief, it's easy to learn to stop moving and opening your eyes when you wake up. You should focus on remaining still vs. not moving since the contrary conscious mind misinterprets negative commands as "do whatever you were told not to do". This simple practice of getting into the habit of remaining motionless during the transition to the blackness of the closed-eyes thing, i.e. the Nothing, did in fact lead to my first two classic OBE exits. Then I forgot how to do it due to various distractions (my practice is only a year old, remember) and there have been no more classic OBE exits. But I don't care, because who needs to see the inside of my astral bedroom? I'm after a more transcendent experience, personally. I certainly enjoyed floating around my bedroom, but the subsequent experiences were a lot more exciting, even though some OBE purists might have called some of them lucid dreams. At this early stage of a practice, it is very misguided and anti-productive to care whether it is a "lucid dream" or an "OBE". You must have some gratitude for what you are given. That's how you develop a proper attitude of 6ness so that it will keep happening.
But people think it's hard to learn how to stop moving and stop opening the eyes upon awakening. The answer is the same as all my answers: more practice of a simpler, more basic kind. Stop obsessing about trying to "have an OBE" or about trying to "have a lucid dream" and stop counting the days, weeks, and months between experiences as a "dry spell". The term "dry spell" needs to be rejected entirely and replaced with honest interest in the path itself. Get more involved in learning the steps between awake and asleep, put more passion into it, and the need to keep score will stop messing you up. Learning to unworld is easy if you keep it simple, but we make it complicated because some part of us doesn't actually want to do the work. Some part of the mind (the part I call the Voice of Idiossification) keeps telling us that the work of actually doing the practice--vs. reading or writing or thinking about it--is the mental equivalent of digging ditches. Kinda easy in a way, but excruciatingly boring. Well if you're not interested, then don't do it. If you are interested, then do the work of making sure you experience many awakenings during the day and some at night too, when your idiossifier would rather be deeply unconscious. Of course it isn't boring at all; the voice of idiosiffication is a liar and a trickster. It is the conscious mind trying to keep you from chopping off its thousand useless appendages, a collection of which it is quite proud.
Some of my tiny experiences of expanded awareness during daytime awakening sessions were plain and simple experiences of watching myself go to sleep and wake up in discrete, countable stages. I mean this literally. Here are some "little sleep" excerpts from my dream journal, so you won't think I'm exaggerating:
2016-02-20 2:30 pm
[LS1] "I thought ____ meant..." [Something about owning other subsidiary patent rights associated with Monroe's Hemi-Sync; woke up resolving to make a quick check on Google Patents for Monroe's heirs. In reality, I wasn't aware that I was interested in hemi-sync.]
[LS2] Repeat of prior LS but without the symbology, I am instructed, shown by doing, to take the journey down and out away from body awareness through shades on a continuum keeping a constant thread of awareness from step one to the next. I experienced (and saw as rectangles of successively darker grays) going deeper and deeper (i.e. further from body awareness) through five successive discrete steps, not slow but in about two seconds, boomboomboomboomboom. I actually experienced this, arrived at the fifth step where I had no contact with the body, and awoke directly from there to the notion that this was the same message as that intended to be conveyed by the last LS.
[Note: my first classic OBE exit came a week later.]
2016-03-09 9:30 am
[Meditation, better late than never.]
[Tired of repeating mantra so much, tried only using mantra when thoughts popped up. This made the meditation much more interesting since it's not about the mantra which I've had so many decades it's like just more noise.]
[not asleep] Lost awareness of body. Visual field is like a black computer screen without the computer. Conscious awareness is a small X on the screen (literally). The X is at far upper right corner of screen but trying to wander off screen. I keep pulling it back. When it starts to wander off screen I start to lose consciousness. Finally I click the X mentally and wake up, i.e. become conscious of the body in the chair. [I was not asleep--head was not slumped down--all above is literal. Progress toward maintaining consciousness at the edge of sleep. This was not a planned visualization or a hypnagogic image, it was deeper than that.]
[NOTE: my second classic OBE exit came the next day.]
Once you've learned to wake up without moving or opening your eyes, the next thing you should do is to assume you are in the Nothing, the door to everything, ready to go anywhere you want. Reinterpret that black, buzzy place as the Nothing, the door to everything, and forget the odd notion that you are lying in bed with your eyes closed with a dry mouth having to pee. Change your mind. At this point, wondering what to do next is the death of the experience. By now you should have already repeated your plan of action over and over to yourself and written it in your journal every night before you go to bed. This is how you get something lined up in intent. Once a planned action is first in intent, it manifests automatically as soon as the conditions are right. With no plan of action, something seemingly random or automatic will manifest because it will just happen to be the first item on the Intent Agenda. Therefore I am changing Michael Raduga's excellent terminology "plan of action" to "intent-o-genda". Because it is the existence of a plan to take action that automatically gives birth to that action--engenders it--via intent--once the conscious mind has gotten turned down an appropriate degree, but not all the way off.
Often when I wake up, especially if a dream plotline had been interrupted by anything including lucidity, I will be in the throes of energy sensations such as vibrations, the sound current, and most pronouncedly, the ability to generate big, full-color images instantaneously by just wishing it. This state--the Projection Room--is fun to hang out and play in, or it can be the doorway to the Nothing which is the doorway to everything. Monroe called it Focus 12, with the Nothing or the 3D darkness or the Void being Focus 21, and lucid dreaming where thoughts instantly manifest being Focus 22.
One time I got out of bed and retained this strong imaging state for about 20 minutes while walking around the room, hanging out at my desk, opening my eyes for a second and then closing them to find the ability to generate images still there, undisturbed. The images were life-size, full color, and three-dimensional. I even turned a light on. I was not writing much down because language kills this sort of thing, so the only image I remember is a big 3-dimensional spiral of colors swirling around my whole body in broad swaths of red, white and blue. I don't think anyone considers getting out of bed when this stuff hits them, but I did and found out it had no effect on the state I was in.
Another time I got out of bed in a similar condition, but immediately got hooked on negative images. I could have stopped it by opening my eyes and keeping them open, but who wants to waste an opportunity. It takes positive and negative to make the world go around. I considered being afraid, but this didn't sound like much fun either, so I just watched unemotionally and kept changing the channel so that the images would not be upsetting to my tender sensibilities. I mean these were horrible, gross and grotesque images, such as flesh being stripped from human faces, monsters with rotten flesh falling off them, bugs crawling out of people's eyes and ears, etc. Full size and full color. Occasionally I was given a break from it by viewing a procession of human automatons walking down a road in one direction, completely expressionless, in a fog. None of this had to make any sense; I just enjoyed being able to experience expanded states of awareness by keeping my eyes closed and not talking to myself. In terms of what I've written in this book of a philosophical nature, I'd guess this was an experience of my "repository wherein dwell our least useful aspects," the reflections of our least desirable parts. Maybe we could call this "Focus minus 23".
Ideally, however, when you wake up with images cranking out of you unbidden, it is the time to do some full-blown unworlding. In the last two nights I've awakened from dream states with vibrations, sound currents, and images, but not having a clear plan of action due to the fact that my attitudes are in flux right now, I didn't actually know what to do next. It occurred to me later that there is nothing wrong, idealogically or otherwise, with using one of the many "OBE exit" techniques that I've read about and even used. In the past I've slipped out or fallen out of bed and floated instead of hitting the ground; in the past I've rolled "out of my body" and floated around the room; why not? I should not let the ideal of unworlding or "just phasing out directly without any exit strategies" stand in the way of having an experience when the door is standing wide open.
And here is where I got that message. Recall that I call my higher self "Whirly" and let me inform you discreetly that I've been able to generate the image of a spiral ever since I did a vision quest in about 1982 that resulted in my being able to do so. Also keep in mind that my intent-o-genda for months has been to experience a meeting with my entire soul retinue. And finally, keep in mind that what spurred the writing of this present book was my rejection of spending all my time trying to say impressive things on an internet forum where people were using their real names and trying to out-spiritual each other by saying impressive things and name-dropping who they know in this field. New age networking in the guise of a forum that is supposed to be there to help beginners learn unworlding. So in a way, unworlding is a bit of rebellion on my part against the new age book writers who never manage to get across that this skill is easy to obtain, if only you will just put in the requisite time and focus on any worthwhile technique long enough to get 'er done. My excitement was caused by finding the bare bones of that worthwhile technique: the generic version. Anyhow, this is how I realized I should not be closed to using techniques that involve "leaving the body" even though I hope to stop using such limiting terminology in general.
Last night I was almost lucid and dreaming that I was looking through a vivid, full-color brochure printed on bright, slick, white paper showing group photos of people in internet social circles who were planning to get together and meet each others' physical bodies. When I got to the group photo of my social circle, the leader of the group was labelled with the name "Roll Roll" and after his name I read the words, "I don't whirl." That's when I woke up vibrating and able to generate full-color images at will, but unable to remember my intent-o-genda because I had to pee so bad.
With this in mind, I have devised a simple classic OBE exit technique that I plan to use next time I wake up in an expanded state of awareness but seemingly parked in my body. This seems like a good way of climbing the beanstalk at those times when the state of awareness is practically begging for a classic out-of-body scenario. That doesn't mean I plan to float around in my bedroom. That is something I have no intention of doing, ever again, hopefully. Twice was disappointing enough and I've done it three times. I don't need to gaze upon my body drooling on its pillow. I do not seek validation of the reality of expanded realities because I had one ESP dream which was so excruciatingly accurate that I have not needed any other validation than that.
The following method of climbing the beanstalk is based partly on a more complex set of instructions taught by Bob Peterson, the OBE writer and book reviewer, on his youtube video. It also partially includes the method of Michael Raduga in which he stays with a technique for mere seconds before cycling to the next technique if the first one doesn't work for him.
We're looking for the Nothing which is the 3D Void and is the doorway to everything. Let's say you wake up in the Projection Room. You're able to generate distinct, full-color images easily. So here's what you do. Grab an image and move it back and forth and up and down. This ensures you have control of it in two dimensions. Next you make it get smaller and larger while imagining it is moving farther away and then closer to you. This ensures you have control of it in three dimensions. At this point, you rotate it slowly to left or right or back-and-forth, then try to merge with the rotation by grabbing it with your attention and intending to cling to it fiercely. If you feel yourself rotating, imagine the first item on your intent-o-genda, hopefully something you don't do in your bedroom, and you should be there instantly, hopefully still lucid.
If you don't merge with the rotating object immediately, then elongate the tunnel into three dimensions and since you're already clinging to it, just pull it toward you so that you enter it and it moves over and past you. This is better than trying to move into it since you just experienced not being able to roll, so assume you're not quite mobile and move the image instead. While the tunnel moves past you, imagine performing the first item on your intent-o-genda. This should spark off the transition to an awakening within the Nothing or beyond it in your intended destination within expanded awareness.
If you wake up and are not in vibrations with the ability to instantly generate full-color, high-definition images, keep your eyes closed and just listen for the sound current that creates the world. It's always there; some people blasphemously call it tinnitus. When you listen to it in an unworlded or nearly unworlded state, it gets louder. Stop talking to yourself, stop doubting and worrying about what to do next, and you'll probably notice various sensations which you can call vibrations. You will probably notice, the same as when you are Noticing, that the blackness of what you imagine to be your closed eyelids is not blackness at all. Once you can generate images at will, then proceed with climbing the beanstalk as described above.
Either that or get out of bed and pee, write in your dream journal, and try again next time you wake up. Who's in a hurry, anyway?