The other day I was scouring my local Barnes and Noble for a Voodoo ritual book (per usual?). Strangely, it isn’t as popular a religion as one might think. But just as I was about to cry out to Obatala for forsaking my current WIP, I came across a magical little tome called Dream Yoga: Illuminating Your Life Through Lucid Dreaming and the Tibetan Yogas of Sleep, by Andrew Holecek.
I took a deep breath in and reached down to pick it up.
Preface break: this year, I’ve been actually, really (seriously this time!) getting into yoga.
So imagine my glee at a book that seemed to combine two things I love: yoga and sleep.
The back cover promised just that. Through lucid (conscious) dreaming, Holecek claims that a mental yogi can reach enlightenment more quickly than if he or she were, say, to meditate in an ancient Japanese temple:
I began reading as soon as I got home. Thankfully, my humiliating lack of Buddhism knowledge wasn’t a problem — Holecek describes the basics of the belief and the different types of meditations involved. He also explains what lucid dreaming is and the techniques an oneironaut (yes, there’s a word for a dream adventurer and it sounds gloriously like “astronaut”) can use in order to achieve lucidity. It involves nostril pressing and mentally turning yourself into a lotus flower, but hey, beggars can’t be choosers, even in the dream world.
Once the oneironaut (using this word every chance I get) gets a hang of lucid dreaming, he or she can move on to performing dream yoga. Thankfully, this doesn’t require yanking your poor dream-self into handstand scorpion. Instead, the first step is to fly. Yes, fly.
Did I mention that I love this book?
I won’t get into the other steps in the process to becoming a dream Buddha, because obviously you should just go pick up a copy. The biggest takeaway, for me at least, was that I got so much more out of Dream Yoga than I’d imagined when I’d pranced over to the cash register. It was a strange experience — like the book itself was a meditative journey. I found myself in this deep, simple state of peace, one that bloomed outward from within. Like a lotus.
And that’s probably a sign I’ve been hanging out with Buddha a little too much. This oneironaut is heading back to the writing grind!
But seriously, go get Dream Yoga, by Andrew Holecek. You won’t regret it!