Thursday, October 27, 2016

A list of herbs that can activate lucid dreaming


How many of us remember our dreams? How many of us can control them?

People who have lucid dreams know they are dreaming, and they have the ability to control their dreams. They are able to navigate their dreamscape with an awakened mind, asking characters they come across pretty insightful questions about their spirit path. They can run, jump, and fly at will, gaining profound inner wisdom from the experience.

If one wants to dream more at night and maybe even experience the allusive lucid dream, there are several herbs one can take before bed that will help. These herbs have been used for centuries as both medicines and dream enhancers.

Caution: Although these herbs are completely legal, one should practice caution when taking them. On top of producing better dreams, these herbs also have medicinal properties. Take this into consideration when using them and perform proper research.


Wild Asparagus Root – Asparagus Racemosus

Asparagus root is called “Shatawari” in Ayurvedic medicine and Tian Men Dong in Chinese. This directly translates to “heavenly spirit herb.” Shamans, monk, Chinese Taoist, and yogis have cherished this herb for millennia because of it’s heart-opening properties.

It also known as “The Flying Herb” because it is believed that it helps one “fly through the universe at night, achieving magnificent dreams.” This was important because wisdom schools of ancient China place much value on lucid dream work.

According to Chinese folk medicine, asparagus root has a direct and positive effect on heart energy and dissolving our physical incarnation dualities. “This allows our consciousness to blossom into infinite space while we sleep.”

Effects: Improves quality of sleep, induces relaxation and stress relief, serves as a good anti-depressant and stimulates “flying dreams.”

Use: Brewing a tea of either the fresh or dried root is the best way to use wild asparagus. However, fresh asparagus root will be much more potent and efficient.

Valerian Root – Valeriana Officinalis

Commonly used in folk medicine as a calming aid, muscle relaxant, and to promote deep sleep for centuries, valerian root also tends to induce lucid dreaming. That is because it causes a heightened state of slumber.

Valerian also appears to help people remember their dreams. According to Robert Monroe, a famed specialist in Out of Body Experiences, “Most of us dream, and those who don’t simply do not remember them.”

Valerian root may be the thing one needs to remember their dreams and even navigate them successfully.

Keep in Mind: Valerian root will intensify any nocturnal adventure be it a good dream or a nightmare. Keep that into account when using it to enhance a dream state.

Warning: There is not enough information on the effect of valerian root on pregnant women to determine whether it is safe or not. If one is expecting, it is best to avoid it.

Use: More often than not, valerian is brewed in a tea. However, one must use hot water, not boiling water. Boiling water will destroy the delicate oils in the root. It is also possible to get a tincture from dried or fresh valerian root. These can generally be found in health food or online herb stores.

Mugwort – Artemisia Vulgaris

Mugwort has a rich medicinal and metaphysical history throughout the Americas, Europe, and Asia.

Mugwort is referenced in Celtic and Norse mythology as a magical plant that can ward off evil. It was hung in doorways and burnt as incense to remove stagnant air and prevent illness.

Mugwort is known as “Molush” by the Chumash Indians of California, and its Paiute name translates literally to “Dream Plant”. It’s often smoked in indigenous ceremonies, and interestingly, is also hailed by various tribes for its power to ward off evil, bad spirits, and disease. 

Mugwort can be found almost anywhere. Take a look around the next time you go for a walk and you are sure to find some.

Use: Mugwort can be brewed as tea or smoked in a pipe. It smokes well with organic tobacco and other smoking herbs such as mullein or bits of white sage. The leaves of the plant are what contain the active chemical compounds used enhance dreams.

With careful preparation and planning, one can quickly learn to navigate their dreams with the use of natural herbs. Use your resting time to learn all that you can from the dream realms.

Mexican Dream Herb – Calea Zacatechichi 

Calea is perhaps the best known of all Dream herbs. The Chontal Indians of Mexico used this shrub traditionally for lucid dreaming.  Calea can be consumed in tea (the flavor is pungent and bitter) or by smoking the dried leaves. 

Effects: Apart from the intensification of visual imagery during sleep, you may find yourself feeling a sense of well-being, light-headedness and clarity the day after.

Use: Taking at least five grams of this herb is required to be really effective for most people. Drink the herb before bed, keep an intent in mind before falling asleep.

Sun Opener Herb – Heimia Salicifolia 

This plant was called Sinicuichi (or Sun Opener) by the Aztecs and is still used by Mexican shamans as a trance divination catalyst. This herb is regarded as sacred in that it enables vivid recollection of past distant events. Some users have reported the remembrance of pre-birth events!

Effects: Apart from the intensification of prophetic visual imagery during sleep, Sun Opener causes a yellowing of the vision and altered acoustic perception.

Use: Traditionally, fresh leaves are collected and allowed to wilt. The leaves are then put into a cup or jar, cool water is added, and the mixture is placed in the sun to brew and ferment for at least 24 hours. It is said that during the fermentation process, the knowledge of the sun is embedded into the potion, creating the “elixir of the sun” (hence the name).

Intellect Tree – Celastrus Paniculatus 

Celastrus paniculatus is a shrub used in Ayurvedic medicine in India. Celastrus seeds and oil have long been regarded in India as beneficial to the intellect and memory which makes it a wonderful supplement in dream recollection. Apart from its effectiveness as a dream enhancer, Celastrus is a great mental stimulant, or nootropic, that increases your mental “sharpness.”

Effects: Apart from the intensification of visual imagery during sleep, Celastrus is an effective brain tonic.

Use: Take 5-10 seeds one hour before bedtime for 3 to 5 days until vivid dreaming occurs.

Xhosa Dream Root – Silene Capensis 

Silene is regarded by the Xhosa people of Africa as a sacred plant. Its roots are traditionally used by shamans to promote lucid dream states in healers and other shamans during initiation ceremonies. It is noted as a “teaching plant” that is considered highly sacred.

Effects: Intensification of visual imagery during sleep.

Use: Mix this herb in small amounts in water and consume prior to sleeping. Silene also makes an interesting tasting tea but it can be bitter, so the extracted “shot” form is recommended.

Blue Lotus – Nymphaea Caerulea

Although it is nicknamed the Blue Egyptian Lotus, the Nymphaea Caerulea herb is actually a Water Lilly that shares no connection to the actual lotus flower. Nymphaea was used as a sacrament in ancient Egypt as a mild sedative. Today, the herb is used by herbalists to treat insomnia, but it has also been reported to induce lucid dreaming.

Effects: Improves quality of sleep and may intensify visual imagery.

Use: This herb is typically consumed in teas, elixir extracts, or by smoking it. If you have trouble dreaming or if you find yourself frequently waking up during dreams, blue lotus is a great supplement to use alongside one of the other substances mentioned in this article.

African Dream Bean – Entada Rheedii 

Traditionally used in African medicine to induce vivid dreams and enable communication with the spirit world, Entada facilitates entry into the dream world, and promotes increased REM awareness. This makes it easier for the sleeper to realize that they are dreaming and thus gives them an edge in achieving lucidity. Entada contains several active compounds, essential oils and alkaloids.

Effects: Improves sleeping states by increasing depth, length and awareness.

Use: The inner meat of the seed is consumed directly, or the meat is chopped, dried, mixed with other herbs and smoked just before sleep to induce the desired dreams.

RECOMMENDATIONS ABOUT TAKING LEGAL PSYCHEDELICS

Always do a very well research before consuming any substance. 

Keep in mind that the type, quality, age, storage and care of these herbs are all factors that will influence your experience with them.

Not only that, but the set, substance, setting and right dosage, along with creating a strong enough intention are all essential elements that must be carefully considered before exploring the depths of your mind. 

Some herbs for external use 

Datura is a powerful, fragrant flower that has a history of uses around the world. Place a flower or two in your pillowcase for lucid and very vivid dreams.

Mugwort has been known to enhance vivid, lucid and prophetic dreams.

Anise‘s licorice-like fragrance can keep nightmares away.

Sage leaves can be used to bring more peacefulness and healing to your dreams.

Burdock is effective at keeping negativity, anger and sadness from your dream state.

Mullein can help you to ward off nightmares and have pleasant dreams.

Jasmine flowers are known to enhance erotic and romantic dreams, especially useful for women processing issues related to sex.

Lemongrass can boost your boring dreams by adding color and exotic elements.

Rose Petals will add a loving sense and warmth to dreams. Also especially helpful to women.

Clary Sage‘s super fragrant scent can provide you with some vivid and strange dreams. Ideal for the nocturnal adventurer!



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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Lucid dreamers are more self-reflective


A new study has discovered that the area of the brain that enables self-reflection is larger in lucid dreamers — those people who can control their dreams.

According to researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin and the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, this means lucid dreamers might also be more self-reflecting when awake.

Lucid dreamers are aware of dreaming while dreaming, the researchers explain. Sometimes, they can even play an active role in their dreams. Most of them, however, have this experience only a few times a year.

For their study, the neuroscientists compared the brain structures of frequent lucid dreamers and people who never or only rarely have lucid dreams. They discovered that the anterior prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain that controls conscious cognitive processes and plays an important role in the capability of self-reflection, is larger in lucid dreamers.

The differences in volumes in the anterior prefrontal cortex between lucid dreamers and non-lucid dreamers suggest that lucid dreaming and metacognition are closely connected, the researchers noted.

This theory is supported by brain images taken when the participants were solving metacognitive tests while awake. Those images show that the brain activity in the prefrontal cortex was higher in lucid dreamers.

“Our results indicate that self-reflection in everyday life is more pronounced in persons who can easily control their dreams,” said Elisa Filevich, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher in the Center for Lifespan Psychology at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development.

In a follow-up study, the researchers said they intend to train volunteers in lucid dreaming to examine whether this improves the capability of self-reflection.

The study was published in The Journal of Neuroscience.


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Monday, October 17, 2016

Omnism, the new spiritual belief


You've probably heard of a lot of other "isms" when it comes to beliefs. There's agnosticism (not sure if there is a God), theism (belief in one or more Gods), monotheism (one God), polytheism (many gods), deism (belief that there is a God, but he's not personally involved), and even atheism (belief in no God). Get ready to add a new ism to your vocabulary: omnism.

It's actually not new; the term was coined back in 1839 by Philip J. Bailey in his poem "Festus." But in the new millennium, the time seems to be ripe for the concept to catch on.

WHAT IS OMNISM?

Omni means 'all'; in turn, omnism is the belief in all.

All of what, exactly? It's the belief that all religions have a point. That (according to the Oxford English Dictionary) everything has a "single, transcendent purpose or cause uniting all things or people."

Omnism is the recognition and respect of all religions; those who hold this belief are called omnists.

Omnism is not a cult.

Like all other isms, monism is a position; not a religion in itself. There are no specific teachings, no rituals and no particular sets of beliefs that omnists follow. It’s more of a way of thinking and a way of approaching religious teachings. 

The Omnist holds an open mind when it comes to spirituality and religion. 

They're open to that wisdom, to the truths found within the different systems. Many omnists say that all religions contain truths, but that no one religion offers all that is truth.

Some omnist may lean towards one religion but are open to the ideas of other religions. They may go to a Christian church but also follow the teachings of Buddha, ancestor worship or Paganism.

Some omnists believe that all religions follow the same god they simply have different titles, rule books and approaches to their religious path.

The funny thing is, a lot of people who consider themselves spiritual but not religious, who feel they are spiritually eclectic and progressive, are often omnists who never even heard the word.

Omnists also are scientific in nature. They tend to love research and science.

If you're omnist and didn't know it raise your hand!


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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Three Treasures and Sexual Energy Cultivation


Taoists say: "Sex is the reason we are born and it is the reason we die." What they mean by this is that it was sexual energy that gave us life and it is the misuse of sexual energy that causes premature aging, illness, and eventually death.

To understand how to achieve immortality we must look closely at three energies that the Taoist call the Three Treasures. The Three Treasures are our essential life energies that create everything physical, mental, and spiritual.

The first treasure is "Ching" or "Jing". Ching is our sexual and physical energy and is related to P'o or Earth Spirit energy. It's physical manifestation is the sperm, the egg, as well as the whole body. Ching's primordial energy is to motivate us to procreate and be sexual. It is expressed in the blood and sexual fluids of both sexes. The emotional expression for Ching is sensuality and giving.

The second treasure is "Qi" or "Chi". This is our breath and vital energy. We could not live even a moment without Qi. Qi animates the physical body and activates the mental function. It also animates and attracts us to be sexual. The physical expression of Qi is through the orifices of the mouth and penis for men, and mouth and nipples for women. The emotional expression of Qi is passion and kindness.

The third treasure is "Shen", the mind and spirit energy. Shen relates to the Heavenly Spirit or Hun. It has to do with our spiritual existence and creates the consciousness of sexuality. Shen is expressed through the eyes, and this is where the saying "the eyes are the windows of the soul" comes from. Both compassion and wisdom are the emotional expressions of Shen.

A Taoist could not achieve immortality without fortifying these three treasures. Each treasure builds upon the next. Ching is needed to create Qi. Qi is needed to build Shen. In that order. But there is a limit to the amount of Qi (life energy) we have. We are born with a certain amount and when that Qi is used up the body can no longer exist and we die.

Fortunately, Ching (sexual energy) can be cultivated and made stronger. The Taoists found if they could increase their Ching they could restore and revitalize their Qi. When a person's Qi was strong enough it activated Shen (spirit) and illumination of the mind/spirit was attained. For this reason, the conserving and gathering of Ching was of utmost importance to a Taoist seeking longevity and spiritual enlightenment.

So how does a person increase their Ching?

Before we can begin to look at ways to increase sexual energy, we must first look at the ways we loose sexual energy. A woman loses Ching every time she has her period. A man loses his Ching every time he ejaculates. To conserve Ching, a man must decrease (not eliminate) the amount of times he ejaculates and a woman's needs to decrease (not eliminate) her menstrual flow. Some texts on Taoist sexology state that a woman needs to limit her orgasms to conserve her Ching. This perspective comes from a male centered philosophy that has mistakenly treated a woman’s restoration the same way as a man’s. Nothing could be further from the truth. Females Taoists know that orgasms do not deplete a woman's Ching. Rather, by using certain techniques, she can make full use of it's energy to benefit her health and well-being.

Conservation of sexual energy is only one part of the equation. For full physical restoration and revitalization a person needs to do more than just conserve his/her Ching. One must also practice methods to build and cultivate it. The techniques for doing are different for men and women.

Sexually speaking, Taoist view men and women as equal partners. To restore youthfulness and vitality, each must capture in the other what is lacking in themselves. Men tend to be more yang in nature; their sexual energy tends to be more active and external. A woman is more yin in her nature and therefore her sexual energy leans towards receptivity and internal experience. One need only glance at male and female genitalia to find legitimacy in this theory. To restore his sexual vitality a man must seek out yin experiences. For a woman to restore her youthfulness and vitality she must seek out yang energy. It is by looking beyond our inherent natures we find methods and techniques that bring greater longevity and health.

[thejourneyofalotus]


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