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#1: The WILD FAQ Author: Spider PostPosted: Sun 11 Oct, 2009
Special thanks to Qu, Sandra and Wolvendeer for their time to provide help and proofread.


Every person on this forum has heard about Wake Induced Lucid Dream, but no one knows everything about it. The questions started way back in 1999 and, now, a decade later are almost the same. Of all techniques this one seems to be the most mysterious one. Now is the time to unveil the mystery.

What is WILD
WILD stands for Wake Induced Lucid Dream.
It is the most unusual technique of them all, because it's done by not falling asleep, at least not consciously. In short, you let your body fall asleep and retain the awareness of waking life as your mind switches to your dream body senses.

The brief history of WILD
Almost two thousand years ago the Buddhists used dream yoga to achieve lucid dreams, and the main technique they used was WILD. Peter D. Ouspensky, a russian philosopher, wrote about WILD in the beginning of 20th century, but the term "WILD" was not coined until Stephen Laberge.

A few things before we start

? LD or OBE
For many people OBEs and lucid dreams are practically indistinguishable.
It is possible to draw a line between these two experiences, but the important point to realize is that that line is not clear, and the two have too much in common. Different sources provide different definitions. The only way to know what you have experienced is to trust yourself.


Because we are all used to shortcuts, for those unfamiliar with all those 2-4 letter non-comprehensive words here's a quick list of those used here. For any additional info just put your cursor over acronym and the definition should be visible.
  • WILD- Wake Induced Lucid Dream
  • SP - Sleep paralysis
  • HI - Hypnagogic Imagery
  • HS - Hypnagogic Sounds (Sound hallucinations)
  • HH - Hypnagogic Hallucinations
  • RL - Real Life

Let's start!

Chapter 1
This chapter deals with physical symptoms of WILD and some of the distractions

Chapter 2
This chapter deals with something common to any FAQ; the Questions and Answers

Last edited by Spider on Sun 11 Oct, 2009; edited 1 time in total

#2: Chapter 1 Author: Spider PostPosted: Sun 11 Oct, 2009
Chapter 1 : Physical

Hypnagogic state
Sleep consists of different stages. When falling asleep, you go through a transition stage from waking to sleeping. This is called the hypnagogic stage. In that one the HI, HH, and HS occurs. I will now explain in little more detail what to expect from it. Note that you may or may not experience all of those phenomena.

Hypnagogic Imagery, Sounds, and Hallucinations

The imagery is the visuals that you see "on" your eyelids. Do not mistake them for your imagination/visualization. It can be a range of things, lines, dots, shadows, they vary in color and shape. If you get too involved with them you will fall asleep pretty fast. The trick is to passively observe them. In the beginning you can even comment on them to yourself, that way your consciousness won't fall asleep easily.

There is a distinct difference between imagery and imagination.
When people say don't get too involved in HI, they mean that you should try not to associate shapes and visualize a clear picture when you see HI. Note that you can do this and WILD with visualization but it tends to consume all of your consciousness and you fall asleep too fast. It is much easier to stay aware with HI than it is with visualization. For some people HI is the way to a WILD and for others visualization works better. So, how to tell the difference? HI you see with your real eyes, and visualizations you see with your minds eye. If you try shifting your attention from your real eyes to your mind's eyes, you will notice the difference. What you see with your real eyes in the beginning is still not real HI; it's called "phosphenes", and it's caused by your brains activity in visual part. Watching phosphenes gets you really fast to real HI and HH. Although there was a lot debating about what is HI or what isn't, I still haven't found the real and backed up explanation for it, but this seems true enough.

Hypnagogic Sounds settle in when you are very close to sleep. They may be unfamiliar sounds, well known sounds, or voices of relatives. The experience can be astonishingly real. Most people "freak out" at this point and wake themselves up. You must stay calm trough this phase, even if you hear bombs falling, because the sounds are not real.

Last, but not the least, the hypnagogic hallucinations. Those are very similar to imagery but the difference is that they are often a whole, vivid, scene that includes sounds , sometimes even feelings, and unlike imagery they tend to exist for few seconds even when you open your eyes. They are your best friend when it comes to WILD. Why? Because after some time watching them they become a dream you can "step into".

Sleep Paralysis
Your body enters sleep paralysis so you don't do in RL what you do in a dream. SP settles in after the hypnagogia, when you are asleep. If there was no SP, and you had a dream that you were in your room, and you got out of bed and jumped through a window to fly, you would do two things:
  1. You would fly ( in a dream).
  2. You would NOT fly, and possibly die, because you had no SP in RL.

The other, more likely, possibility is you would simply wake up because your body is moving. As a result, you would sleep poorly because every dream you have would wake you up.

So, SP is not unnatural or something to fear, think of it as a big help, and it happens every night regardless of you being aware of it or not. When it happens just go with the flow.

Some, but not all, people who practice WILD experience vibrations going through their body. The vibrations should not be mistaken for that little numbness feeling, as they are quite different and you can't miss them. They have a very electric quality to them, something like being shocked by electricity, but they should not be painful. Some people experience a cold wind blowing through their body instead of vibrations. People who reported wind, experienced an OBE rather than LD. Vibrations/Wind is a good sign you are getting there. When/if you experience them, wait until they become stronger then try to roll over and you should be in a dream. If you wait too long you could just remain awake in that state. Note when rolling over you could do it in two ways, imagining it, or trying physically to move, use the way that works for you.

Here are some other ways to move towards a dream.
  • Imagine yourself sinking head first.
  • If you experience strong HH use that to enter dream.
  • Imagine going trough a wall if you are lying against one.
  • Float to the ceiling.
  • Imagine spinning your body (like rolling over) as fast as you can and let momentum of that movement help you roll over into dream.
  • Use imagination, whatever gives you strong feeling of moving your body or strong HH can work.

The distractions are the worst enemy of any person practicing WILD, but not a strong one though.

The Itch
Possibly the most common distraction for any beginner.
The good news? It's all in your head, yes the itch is imagined thing, but too common for you to give it some thought. The key to overcoming this problem is

a) Realizing
b) Shifting your attention away from it

a) Realizing
When you experience it, try to move it just a little, up or down. You will succeed.
From there, move it some more, when you moved it a little, you can move it some more, right? Well, if you can move it, it doesn't really exist, and as soon as you realize it's not real it will go away, if not, just want it disappear and it will.

b) Shifting your attention
The key to this technique is, well, you guessed it, shifting your attention to something else. Use HI, any feeling, thoughts, anything that is far away from your real body. Your dream body can't itch, unless you want it to.

This, too, is a common problem as swallowing will ruin your attempt at WILD.
It's recommended to swallow at beginning, and as you progress towards sleep you won't salivate as much. Like any other distraction, it's only a problem if you focus on it. Again, you must shift your attention elsewhere. It helps if you gently press the tip of your tongue against the inner portion of your lower teeth. If you wonder how can it help, try lifting your tongue so you touch upper portion of your mouth as deep as you can; it makes you produce more saliva than normal. Well, lowering your tongue does the opposite.

External distractions
This kind of distractions can't be helped, or can they?
If there is not too much distraction from the outside world you can do something about it. As you practice WILD you will, sooner or later, learn how to fall asleep faster and slower, you will be more aware of the process. So, use that to your advantage, start falling asleep fast, then when you are deep enough so you hear more buzzing in your ears than outside world, just continue as you would if there where no distractions.

Last edited by Spider on Sun 11 Oct, 2009; edited 1 time in total

#3: Chapter 2 Author: Spider PostPosted: Sun 11 Oct, 2009
Chapter 2 : Q and A

Is WILD hard ?
For some it is, for some it isn't. I can only say that you can't do it without effort and patience. It's as hard as you make it.

Is there a best position for WILD ?
Yes, and no, one that is thought to be the best is to lay on your back. But you can use your normal sleep position, as you are used to it, and it's kind of a signal you are ready to sleep. For people who fall asleep easily any position can work, for others it's better to use their position they always sleep in. Just try not to cross your legs and arms too much.

How long does it take before you learn WILD?
It, again, depends on a person, some learn it on first night, and for some can take months, even years. If you feel you can't do it just give a try to some other technique, and try again later.

When should I attempt WILD ?
You should do it after two or more REM cycles, and not in the night when you first go to sleep as REM isn't close and it's much harder if not impossible for some people to do it. It's best to wake up after five or six hours of sleep, wake up your mind so it's not asleep, but not too much, and try WILD.

I try to WILD but I start to feel really uncomfortable, roll over, and fall asleep
Well, conveniently, it's called the "roll over signal". It's sort of test your body preforms in order to know if your mind is still awake, so it can go to sleep. You just have to bear with it. Sometimes it's there, sometimes it isn't.

I start seeing HI, but when I realize what's happening it just disappears
Then you have to observe it passively, you can try to shape it, stabilize it, whatever works for you, there are quite a few tutorials on WILD with different approaches, so find what suits you best.

I don't experience HI at all
Well, not all experience HI, and those who do, do not always experience it. I guess the way for you to go is to find some dream entrance technique that doesn't involve HI, like sinking trough the bed or similar.

After some time my eyes start twitching
You are experiencing REM onset; it doesn't mean you are in REM already, but rather that you may soon enter the REM stage. Do not focus on that, or it will just make you more awake. It's a good indicator that you are close to WILD.

Sometimes when I try WILD I see my room with my eyes closed
That is not uncommon, it could be an impression from light, or it could be HI. Whatever the case you won't see it for too long. And if your eyes are closed it definitely isn't enjoy the new experience.

What should I use as a focus for WILD?
You can use virtually anything. You can listen to music or count your breaths. The feeling of falling and HI could work as focus as well. There are more possibilities; you just have to see what works best for you. Try to find something which is easy to focus on as it needs to keep you aware without making you more awake. It's best to try all approaches and then decide what is best for you. If, in the process of trying out the approaches, you succeed with one, you should stick with it.

I get to <insert phase here> but I can't go any further
Mostly the problem is that you are too conscious. When you get stuck in some stage of WILD, you must not concentrate on it, just let it "go". A lot of people make a mistake by concentrating on symptoms of WILD rather than on the technique.
If you get stuck in some of following stages:

    Vibrations - Wait for them to become stronger then exit your body.(rolling over etc)
    Strong HI - Try "zooming" into scene you see.
    Feeling of falling - Try to sink through your bed or float off of it.

If nothing works, go to sleep and try tomorrow. Remember to let go. When trying WILD, don't focus on the symptoms rather than on the process of falling asleep.
You should not react to anything that is happening to you. Just observe.

When I practice WILD my leg/arm/something suddenly twitches and wakes me up a little
It's called "hypnic jerk" or "hypnagogic jerk" and it's involuntary myoclonic twitch that happens when you are in state of hypnagogia. Considering WILD, it is probably the case that you are going in and out of SP or that your muscles are not relaxed enough. Try using some relaxation technique before attempting WILD and don't focus on your body. Another explanation is that your mind interprets wrong the feeling of relaxation of muscles, and that results in feeling of rapidly falling, so you twitch by instinct to regain your balance.

When I try WILD I feel rather dizzy
It's same as the feeling of falling. It's a sign that you are getting closer to sleep.

If I move a little will it ruin my attempt?
Most probably yes. When attempting WILD you should pretend you are dead, no conscious movements at all. Only move if you really have to, because no one can guarentee that you will be able to continue where you left off.

When I get really close to WILD I hear a loud noise like somebody is ripping paper right next to my ear
It's an transition stage between waking and sleeping. Just wait few more seconds
and you should be sleeping, remember to stay calm as it's really easy to wake up.
When that few seconds passed get up and do an RC !

How long should I stay awake during WBTB when I attempt WILD?
You should stay awake so long that you clear your mind a little, but don't wake up your body to much. In general it means trip to the bathroom. If you usually have hard time falling asleep, don't even get out of bed.

If I sleep on my back I can't fall asleep, and if is sleep on my side I fall asleep too fast and vice-versa
Then you should find the middle, like sleeping on your front, trying different leg and arm positions, just be sure not to cut the blood off from your arms and legs, as it will result in an unpleasant feeling.

I can't seem to focus on anything, and when I finally do I can't fall asleep
Try to do WILD with WBTB if you where doing it at bed time. Just let go. When exhaling say to your self "Let go", that will help you to get to more relaxed state.

When I get vibrations, how long until I enter the dream ?
It' shouldn't take long, considering you didn't loose focus or focused on wrong thing. After the vibrations start, you will probably, like most people do, see a bright spot which will come closer as you watch it, when it's close enough for you to look in in you will see a dream-scene inside. When it "zoomes" in you will be in a dream.

I woke up and I was in SP
It is not uncommon for people who are practicing WILD to wake up in SP. It means that you woke up before your body did. It is the same as the SP you can experience when trying WILD. You can either use it for another WILD or try to get out of it. To get out of it, try moving. If this doesn't work, try to pay attention to your breathing and start breathing in an unnatural manner. This should give your body a signal that you are awake.

Whenever I try WILD I just give up after some time
Well, don't ! If it was because roll over signal, try to overcome it, it won't last forever. If you where to tired, try it when you are feeling better. In whatever way you think you failed, you didn't. You learned a little about that process and that knowledge will be useful for other attempts. Remember: patience and effort is the way to successful WILD.

I would like to WBTB but my parents/brother/etc is sleeping in room with me so I can't use alarm clock
This isn't tightly associated with WILD but it's common problem as WILD is best to practice with WBTB. The solution: you must learn autosuggestion. The alternatives are an alarm clock with headphones, or if you are light sleeper set your alarm on mobile phone and set to vibration, but far best method is the autosuggestion and it's not that hard.

I can't keep my eyes closed
Either you are too awake or you put too much awareness to them.
Try closing them tightly and move them in wide circles 3-4 times in one direction then in the other. After that slowly relax them and they should stay closed easier.
And as same as for everything , don't focus on them.

When I WILD my heart and/or breathing goes crazy
That is common for people starting with WILD as you aren't used to all of the sensations and you get really excited. It will go away with practice. Note that it can't hurt you and you can't die either. It may feel exactly like that, but that's just part of the experience.

Written by Spider

If you think there is a question that should be mentioned here but it isn't, feel free to PM me and I will consider including it in FAQ

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