Meditation and Dream Reliving
An Exercise for Inducing Greater Awareness
and Responsiveness in Dreams
Developed by Dr. G. Scott Sparrow
Based on the previous research I’ve done in the field of lucid dream induction, I’ve put together a distillation of a technique that has proven effective in helping people induce dreams, or the experience of becoming aware that you are dreaming during a dream. Dream Reliving was first tested in my dissertation study with 170 subjects in 1983, and found significantly more effective than merely trying to have a lucid dream without employing this method.
Before going to bed, complete these simple steps.
Step One: Think back over your dreams and recall the most recent dream that was unpleasant to you. If you cannot remember a recent dream that fits this description, then go back into your past dreams as far as necessary to recall an unpleasant or unfulfilling dream in which lucidity could have improved your responses in the dream and helped bring about a more desirable outcome. Please write down this dream in the present tense, as though it were happening again right now.
Step Two: Get in a comfortable position and spend at least 15 minutes meditating. Once you’ve stilled your mind, and increased your capacity to witness the dream drama without distress, begin to relive the dream. As you do, affirm that this time you will remain fully aware that the dream re-enactment is a dream and that you are entirely free to respond to the events in any way you like. Without actually trying to manipulate the dream characters or outcome, let the dream imagery and events change in response to your new responses. You can be as bold and as creative as you’d like toward the otherwise unpleasant characters and situations. Once you have relived the original experience and experienced a new “lucid” version of it, open your eyes and write down this new version.
Step Three: Place the old and new versions of your dream beside your bed. If you wish, you can relive the same original dream over and over until you feel that it is “complete.” When you relive it for a second or third time, the outcome may be different based on experimenting with different responses to it. Each time you relive it, make note of whatever changes occur in the “new” dream.
Step Four: When you get ready to go to sleep, repeat over and over as you fall asleep, “I wish to more aware in my dreams tonight, and manifest a creative response to whatever I experience.”