FRACTAL ENLIGHTENMENT: “Spontaneity — Why It’s Better Than Having A Plan”

“We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

~Joseph Campbell

 

Be born, go to school, get a job, get married, have kids, have grandkids, get old, die. That’s the plan right? Well, so we think. Unfortunately so many get stuck in this cookie cutter idea of what life is supposed to look like, only to live in constant frustration and disappointment that their life looks nothing like the standardized version.

Life may drift them more and more off course, and they keep trying to control the helm by bringing it back to the life they think they should have, like the characters on TV.

Unfortunately much of their life is spent in the struggle trying to get back “on course”, or what they believe is “on course.” So much time is wasted in this struggle to no avail.

Only when a person just gives up, surrenders to the tides of their life are they able to see that their idea of how things were SUPPOSED to go was causing them a constant frustration because they were never actually enjoying anything about the present moment, or the way things WERE going.

Who says things have to go exactly like that? If things aren’t going exactly like the social norm does that means that things have gone “wrong”?

The fun and adventure lies in the spontaneity, in the suspense, in the uncertainty. Of course it’s fun to have goals and aspirations, things that we envision ourselves doing and ways that we can offer our gifts and talents to the world, but in order to become more open to possibilities and opportunities that are awaiting us, ones that we never expected were possible, the most important thing we need to do is stop planning our futures so rigidly. quote-life

We must allow ourselves to relinquish the need to have absolute control over every single situation, small or big. We must let something else take over, something that knows way more than we do….

“When I finally learned to let go of having to totally control everything around me and let my life unfold, I was stunned by the results. How could I have ever thought I could outsmart the Universe?”  

~Geri Larkin

 

The problem with trying to control how every situation will go is that we cannot always see the bigger picture in every situation. We have no idea why we didn’t get the job we applied for, or why our partner decided to leave us, or why the car wouldn’t start on our way to work.

All the ego knows is that this situation was “bad”, we experienced some sense of sadness or pain, and because it does not desire to feel uncertain, or pain, sadness or vulnerability ever again, it must plan. It must control how everything in the future will go, so as to never feel out of control or open to chance ever again.

However, so much of our life is dependent upon things that we cannot control completely. The weather, traffic, how other people behave, whether or not we get the big promotion, who we meet and how we meet them, are all things that we cannot control 100% of the time.

But the question is, why would we want to? Having total control over every single situation is not only an exhausting endeavor for us but is also a stifling experience for the people in our lives. The result of this fear of losing control is that we limit the universe in being able to direct us to paths that we may not have ever thought of on our own.

As soon as an opportunity or possibility is presented to us that doesn’t fit into our box, or rather our plan of what our life is supposed to look like, we turn away from it and label it “bad idea”… bad idea because it’s not what we think life is supposed to look like.

But if we look at our life from a broader view, from the big picture perspective, and openly accept the fact that we didn’t get the job, or we were dumped by our partner, or our car breaking down made us late for an appointment, we may in fact realize a better job opening was coming along, a new healthier relationship was just around the corner, or our car breaking down prevented us from being involved in a huge accident on the highway.

So just because a situation is not what we WANTED to happen, or what we planned on happening does not necessarily mean that it was bad.

We can look at life in two different ways, one is that things don’t go as planned and that’s a bad thing, or we can look at it as if we live in a universe that always conspires for our greater good, so when something goes “wrong” or unplanned, we trust that it was for our greater good, always, even if we never see exactly why. The first option leaves us in constant resistance, and angry, bitter and stressed out constantly… and the second one leaves us grateful, accepting, and excited everyday about what that day may bring.

“At times the world may seem an unfriendly and sinister place, but believe that there is much more good in it than bad. All you have to do is look hard enough. And what might seem to be a series of unfortunate events may in fact be the first steps of a journey”  

~Lemony Snicket

 

If we envision anything for our future selves it should be that we are the best version of ourselves possible. We are healthy, and happy and doing something that we love to do and surrounded by people that love us. If we make the main focus health and happiness we leave ourselves open to all the many paths and roads and trails that one might take to achieve these goals, instead of getting too attached to exactly how we think life should happen.

Think of the universe like the navigational system in the car, we know the end destination (us being the best version of ourselves), but the HOW we get there is always up in the air.

We may take a million left turns, take the scenic route or we may take the shortest route possible, only to find a happier more fulfilling destination mid-way through. The one thing that we can depend on though is that the universe never lets us get completely off course.

There is never too many “wrong turns” that the intelligence of the universe cannot re-route us back to being on track to our final destination. In fact, there is no “wrong” turns at all, there are only routes that allowed us to enjoy the view a little longer and take things a little slower, or routes that got us to our destination very quickly. Either way, we realize the fun was in the unexpectedness of the adventure.

 

~via FractalEnlightenment.com

ZOEY MILLER: “What Is Lucid Dreaming And How To Control Your Dreams”

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What Does It Mean To Dream Lucidly?

The concept of dreaming lucidly involves using the untapped areas of the brain that are ordinarily not engaged in normal, conscious life to manipulate dreams for the benefit of the individual. These unused areas of the brain are often most active during dreaming, and this unique state of mind can be implemented to enjoy new experiences, practice new skills and develop more effective tools for daily living. Dreaming lucidly gives you the opportunity to test new ways of perceiving experiences within a different framework of reality.

History of Dreaming Lucidly

Humans have always been fascinating with the act of dreaming, with what dreams mean and how they can utilize the power of dreams to influence everyday life. In Ancient Greece, Aristotle pondered the awareness of being in a dream when one is dreaming. A 17th century physician, Sir Thomas Browne, described an ability to dream while being aware of it in one of this texts. It wasn’t until 1867 that the French Marquis d’Hervey de Saint Denys wrote a treatise on the control of dreams. The term “lucid dreaming” was coined by a Dutch psychiatrist Frederik Willem von Eeden. But it was in the 1960s that the study of dreaming lucidly began to be popularized. In the 1980s, Stephan LaBerge at Stanford University began studies on this type of aware dreaming, and his research was confirmed by other scientists. Psychotherapists have also investigated dreaming lucidly as a method of treating individuals with chronic nightmares. They found the technique did, in fact, help to reduce the frequency and severity of nightmare events in these patients. Science is only beginning to probe how dreaming lucidly can be used to help individuals increase their creativity, improve their ability to heal from disease and develop greater confidence in their abilities and their understanding.

What Does Dreaming Lucidly Feel Like?

In typical dreams, individuals may experience a different world where many of the laws of physics don’t apply. They may fall and never become hurt. Physical structures form and disappear in a moment. Many people interact with others on an entirely different level in dreams and feel emotions much more strongly than in waking life. When you become accustomed to dreaming lucidly, you accept these differences in perception more easily. You know you are in a dream state, and therefore can observe what is going on in a more detailed manner. In the lucid state, you become highly aware, but not awake. Novices at the technique may have difficulty staying in this alert-but-not-awake state, and there are techniques you can learn to ensure that you return to the dream when you have become too fully awake. Many people say the feeling of dreaming lucidly is much like playing a role-playing game or video game. It is a feeling something akin to being in an alternate reality, in which distances have no meaning and time is compressed in a strange way. Each person may bring individual aspects to their dreaming, such as running, being chased, speaking without words or working out a particular problem. When you are dreaming lucidly, you are able to change features of the dream to increase some aspects or decrease others, as you desire.

Why Would People Want To Dream Lucidly?

An individual that engages in dreaming lucidly can enjoy new experiences outside of the limits of normal reality. These experiences can be used in real life in a number of ways:

1. Creative imagining

Individuals involved in creative work can try out concepts in an imaginative way, in an environment where the normal rules of social restriction and physical limitation do not apply. This freedom can provide limitless potential for creative expression.

2. Problem solving

The dream environment provides an open situation where various solutions to a real life problem can be applied and tested for consequences.

3. Rehearsal

Similarly, the dream environment can be the perfect place to practice activities for real life that may cause anxiety and stress. This rehearsal can be used for public speaking events, artistic performances, athletic endeavors or interpersonal confrontations. The ability to practice in a lucid and controlled situation can provide increased confidence for the actual event.

4. Healing

Dreaming in a lucid state allows individuals to use the experience as positive imagery to activate the body’s own ability to fight disease. Dreaming lucidly can also help individuals deal with psychological issues, allowing them to practice experiences in a safe environment so they can then transfer their increased confidence into waking life.

5. Spiritual development

Dreaming in a lucid state can help to provide unique insight into spiritual concepts. It provides a different viewpoint that encourages the individual to question the meaning of reality and how people function within the context of the normal world.

6. Adventure and fantasy

Many individuals engage in dreaming lucidly to engage in new adventures and fantasies that they would not ordinarily experience in their normal lives. The dream world can be a safe place to experiment with new activities, personal identities and emotional states that might be problematical in normal life.

7. Nightmare treatment

Dreaming lucidly can also be a method of treating nightmares that allow the individual to control dream situations, rather than being the victim of terrifying experiences and emotions. The dreamer is able to re-design the dream to defuse the frightening aspects and transform them into more benign, acceptable images.

Developing the Ability to Be Aware While Dreaming

Some people have a natural ability to dream lucidly, although they may not recognize that this is what they are doing. Once their ability is recognized, they are able to focus their intentions within the dreams to influence desired actions relatively easily. Other individuals may have never experiences lucidity in their dreaming, and the nature of their dream symbolism is not well understood or may be a cause of fearfulness or anxiety. These individuals can learn to gradually take control of their dream lives, so they can create a more beneficial state during their sleeping state. A number of classes and workshops are available to learn how to dream lucidly at will. These classes can be of significant help if you are having difficulty becoming or staying lucid in your dreams when you desire to do so.

Preliminary Steps

If you feel you have never dreamed lucidly but would like to know how, you can begin by preparing your mind for this unique state of consciousness:

1.Work on recalling your dreams

Dream recall will help to get you accustomed to the symbolism and themes of your dream state. You will then be better able to intervene in the dream when you know the basic structure of it.

2. Keep a notebook and pen by your bed

As soon as you awaken from a dream, describe what you remember of it in as precise detail as you can.

3. Actively hold the intention of remembering your dreams

As you fall asleep, repeat “I will remember my dreams” over and over to set the intention in your mind. You will then be better able to recall the dream.

4. Do “reality checks” several times each day

A “reality check” is a way to check if you are in a waking state or a dream state. Reading a sentence in a paper, looking away and then, reading it again can be a good way to check your reality. If the words have changed, you are probably dreaming. Looking at a watch and seeing time changes can also tell you if you are awake or dreaming. These exercises will be useful when you become adept at dreaming lucidly.

5. Practice mindfulness in your daily life

Most people do through their days without paying attention to most of what occurs, focusing instead on what they have to do next or where they have to go next. Try to be more mindful of everything in your life, increasing your awareness of things, people and events in your everyday life. This exercise will help you to also be aware of these things in your lucid dream state.

Common Methods of Inducing the Lucid State

Once you have become comfortable with focusing on your dream world, you can then begin the experience of becoming more lucid in your dream. At first, you may find that you can only practice lucidity in your dreams on a sporadic basis. As you become more experienced, you will be able to have more of these dreams, and you will become more comfortable interacting in your dream. You can learn a number of methods to dream lucidly whenever you desire it:

1. Imagine your surroundings are a dream

Take a moment during the day to imagine what it would be like if everyday life were a dream. Notice the sounds, smells, lights, colors and activity that occur around you. Now, imagine if unusual reactions happened. For example, what if you suddenly floated off the ground? What if people starting talking in an unknown language? These events could easily occur in a standard dream.

2. Choose something you’d like to do while dreaming lucidly

Maybe you’d like to experience the feeling of flying. Perhaps, you’d like the feeling of giving an important speech that crowds of people applaud. Maybe a romantic encounter with a celebrity sounds enticing. Set this activity in your mind for your upcoming dream.

3. Practice your dream signs and symbols

Once you have learned to recognize the recurring symbols in your dreams, look for them in waking life as you go about your day. This awareness of your dream signs will then be transferred to your dream state, and you will become more aware of when a dream is occurring, by the presence of these special signs.

4. Set your alarm to awaken from dreams

If you set the alarm to wake you during the night, you will be more able to catch yourself in a dream. You can then use this interruption to stay lucid as you fall back into sleep. You can also use your snooze alarm to fall back into a dream for better lucidity and recall.

5. MILD technique

MILD is a method that uses the power of memory to suggest to yourself to remember the dream while you are in the wakened state. You suggest strongly to yourself that you will remember the dream, and you visualize yourself becoming lucid within the dream. You then repeat the intention several times before sleep, so it is the last thing on your mind.

6. Using meditation to transition into dreaming

The mental technique of meditation allows individuals to trigger certain types of brain waves that can be helpful in recognizing dream states and allowing the individual to influence events within the dreams. Tibetan Buddhism has long used the practice of “dream yoga” to understand the true nature of reality and man’s place within it. The mental exercise has often led to leaps in spiritual understanding and into a state of profound reverence. Meditation can also put the practitioner into a state of heightened awareness that allows them to transition more easily into the lucid state.

Getting Creative in Your Lucid Dreaming

Once you are able to fall into a lucid state during your dreams at will, you can then begin to develop the ability to manipulate the details of the experience. You can become a more active player within the dream, rather than being a passive presence. You can utilize your intention to initiate experiences you would not normally encounter in the waking state. You can also participate in activities that transcend normal physical limits in your dreams. Maintaining the lucid state, without fully becoming awake, can be challenging. However, practicing the special techniques used in dreaming lucidly can help individuals to stay focused within the dream state.

What technology is available to assist lucid dreaming?

A number of devices have been developed to help individuals get into a lucid state easily and reliably. This technology can be of assistance to those who have difficulty moving into the lucid state. The devices usually produce sound or light cues that trigger the individual to remember their intention to be lucid while dreaming. Certain herbs and supplements are also available that are said to assist individuals in achieving the lucid state while dreaming. However, there is little scientific evidence available on the effectiveness of these compounds, and in some cases, they can inhibit achieving the proper lucid state.

Can Dreaming Lucidly Be Dangerous?

Generally, dreaming lucidly is a safe and enjoyable experience that allows individuals to experience difference states of reality that help them function in the waking world. However, occasionally, individuals with an underlying mental health condition may have a severe reaction to an experience. In these cases, the individual should discuss the use of dreaming lucidly with a psychological professional to determine if the techniques can be continued safely.

Many people understand the idea of dreaming lucidly instinctively because they have often experienced the feeling of being aware that a dream was occurring. They may have been experiencing lucid dreaming since childhood. Other people will find the concept a bit mysterious, but one that offers potential for greater personal and spiritual growth, as well as a way to bring greater effectiveness to everyday life.

If you have enjoyed the information here, please leave a comment with your thoughts and share it with your friends.

 

 

 

 

About the author: I am the woman next door, dealing with the problems and joys of everyday life. I know that the more I give, the more I’ll be given. So, the goal of my blog is to help more and more people cope with their everyday quandaries, and in doing so, I hope to become a better person myself.

~via In5D.com

ANDREA SCHULMAN: “6 Excellent Reasons To ALWAYS Embrace Change”

Transformation

Lost your job? Going through a breakup? Moving to a new place where you don’t know anyone?

Change can be pretty traumatic if you let it get to you! However, there are a lot of reasons to embrace change. Good or bad, pretty or ugly, change has the ability to enhance your life for the better when you choose to get on board with it.

Embrace change because…

1. Change is inevitable.

The only constant in life is change. You can embrace change, or you can fight it, but change WILL happen. Might as well go with the flow!

2. Change creates more excitement and adventure in your life.

Honestly, if life never changed you would be so bored! While stability is comfortable, too much stability feels stagnant. Change can give your life positive momentum.

3. Change will reveal to you who’s really important in your life.

You’ll never be quite so inclined to know who’s really there for you when you move, get married, have a baby or lose a friend. Big changes have a way of revealing to you the people in your life who are your biggest positive influences (and not-so-positive influences!).

4. Change is an opportunity to become someone new, or try on a new identity.

When you suddenly find yourself single, in a new job or on another new path, suddenly you have the opportunity to try on a new role. Sometimes a new role comes with a new look, a new skill set and/or a new routine. It can be a lot of fun to become a new person.

5. Change adds chapters to your life story.

The more change you experience in life, the more chapters you have to look back on. The more stories you have to tell your grandkids, and the more lessons you can share with the people you care about. A full life is one chock full of changing times, places, people and experiences.

6. Change is the universe’s way of preparing you for something you’ve been wanting.

Sometimes, the quickest route to your dreams is taken by smashing through a brick wall. The universe has a way of shaking things up when we are ready to transition to the next level. Embracing the change ensures you receive the positive benefits on the other side of it.

If life is changing quickly for you right now, strap on your seatbelt, hold on to your hat, and do your best to embrace the transition you are experiencing. There will be good things that result from this change, and the more you can go with the flow, the quicker you’ll reap the benefit of this shift.

XO, Andrea

 

 

 

About the author:
Andrea Schulman is a former high school psychology teacher and the creator of Raise Your Vibration Today, which provides free and easy Law of Attraction techniques. She will be available for group educational seminars and webinars starting in the summer of 2015.

~via In5D.com