My Second Lucid Dream Success -- A New Pact Is Sealed...july 15 2004...
My most successful lucid dream to date happened as I lay in bed asleep on a humid Tokyo morning, and this time I was able to confirm Robert Waggoner (Lucid Dream Exchange) hypothesis that lucid dreams give us a unprecedented chance to interact intelligently with our subconscious symbols and thought processes. (See the July 10 entry for more on this.) Anyway, in this dream I became lucid, and began spinning quickly -- a famous lucid dreaming technique. I decided to go to Iceland, and upon arriving in some park there (it didn't particularly look like Iceland, but what the hell -- who cares! I was happy to be in a lucid dream!) I knelt down and studied a small flower growing in the grass. I then noticed that a group of old people had gripped on to my back. I threw them off, but decided to test out Waggoner's theory that dream characters are there to give you information. I asked them what they represented. To my amazement, they all said things like: "We're here to tell you should take better care of your health." So perhaps my body is trying to tell me something -- it's time to get healthy. Later, flying over Tokyo, I intercepted what I believe are the two strongest personalities in my subconscious. I decided to work with them in future lucid dreams. They have so much to teach me, I am sure!
My First Lucid Dream Success -- And More Success Is Sure To Come...july 10 2004...
I had my first successful lucid dream this morning after more than a week of trying, and the indications are, it is only the beginning of a journey of mastering my inner world! My mind boggles at the possibilities which await me! Anyway, for the past week or so I have been thinking a lot about lucid dreams and how to induce them, and have done some exercises designed to induce lucid dreams. All without much success until now, and I was beginning to lose hope. But then this morning, lucidity came! Not complete lucidity -- I would call it only 20 per cent lucidity -- but is is a start, and I am sure there it heralds the beginning of more spectacular nocturnal adventuring!
So what happened is this: I was in some kind of dream when I became self-aware, aware that I was in a dream. But only hazily aware -- 20 per cent aware. I mean, I was thinking I was awake in the dream, I knew I was in a dream, but I wasn't in full conscious control of my decisions. For example, my first decision after attaining "lucidity" was to take a shower -- what the fuck? Of all the things I could do in a lucid dream -- flying, sex, world travel -- I decided to take a shower. Still, there was something painfully careful and realistic as I climbed the steps of my Tokyo house to get my towel, as if I was taking my first plunge into a new world and was frightened of fucking things up. But there is no way I could say I was completely lucid. Why would I want to take a fucking shower in my dream? According to an article I read tonight on A Fool's Guide to Lucid Dreaming, there are differing layers of lucidity, and I am probably on the lower levels:
"One way to look at rationality in dreams is to classify different levels of lucidity. At the highest level, the dreamer would not only be aware of dreaming, but also possess complete understanding of the implications of this knowledge, and would behave in accordance with that understanding on all levels from thought to action. The lowest, minimal level of lucidity would be realization of dreaming, but without understanding how dreaming is different from waking, and without acting on the lucidity at all, mistaking events, characters and consequences with those from waking life. Yet, degrees of rationality vary from moment to moment in dreams, so that one wishing to use a scale of levels of lucidity would have to rate each decision, action, or response of the dreamer independently. Averaging the lucidity levels in a dream might be a way of establishing a lucidity "score" for the dream. All of this is for future research to decide."
It is all summed up in this quote from The Lucid Dream Exchange: " larger terms, however, lucid dreaming is simply a better and more probing tool from which to understand and comprehend the true immensity of the dreaming process. Given the resources, lucid dreaming would show that dreaming involves even more than symbolic restatements of inner issues, wish fulfillments and emotional conflicts, etc. Given the resources, I feel lucid dreaming would show actual mental processes in the unconscious and aspects of the deeper identity upon which our puny awareness rides. Given the resources, I feel lucid dreaming would rework our understanding of the psyche and the collective aspects of the unconscious with which it communicates."
Hypnosis -- Key to the Unconscious...july 02 2004...
This weblog stream is being converted into a dedicated discussion board for matters relating to dreams and the unconscious. It has become my big interest at the moment, and I am daily conducting exciting experiments which really work. Self-hypnosis works! -- I've discovered that lately. Last night, for example, I tried to use hypnosis to induce a lucid dream. I have even planned this dream in advance -- I told myself that in the dream I would find some marijuana and ecstasy tablets in my back pockets, which I would then consume, to get high while I sleep. Well, guess what, even though I didn't achieve lucidity in my dreams last night, I did have a dream about smoking marijuana! So, hypnosis really works, and I am staggered by the possibilities. This is one particularly useful self-hypnosis script I have been working with lately.
Yesterday, I used this script to convince my unconscious that "I am naturally gifted at learning Bahasa Malaysia", the Malaysian language, since I am planning to go there in December. After I finished the hypnosis induction I found myself suddenly seized with a strange passion to study the Malaysian language as quickly as possible, and suddenly I was able to learn mountains of new words and grammar patterns from online dictionaries and lessons. After I went to sleep last night I would wake up with Malaysian words in my mind -- as if I had suddenly developed a photographic record. It's amazing! I am mean, I didn't even really want to learn Malaysian before I did the hypnotic induction -- it wasn't as if I was seriously passionate about it. However, hypnosis has changed that, and I am now convinced that I will be able to speak Malaysian by the time I go there in December. It is going to be great to see how my understanding of this language develops! And since the Indonesian language is almost the same, it means I will soon be able to translate my website into both Bahasa Malaysia and Bahasa Indonesia, and reach vast new markets! And there has got to be some money potential in that!
Dreams -- Flights of the Imagination...june 17 2004...
I was thinking last night about my recent interest in NLP and the different ways people think. I am pretty sure that I am a VISUAL type thinker, and usually think in pictures. I began to wonder, how could I go about improving my auditory skills? Then, last night, while sleeping, I had a dream in which someone criticised me for being too visual, and showed me a picture of the Chinese ideogram of the word "mouth". "Contemplate this Chinese character," the man said. "It will lead you to an auditory consciousness." So now I am indeed thinking of my mouth, and my voice, and how I change it into something more powerful, more expressive. For more details on NLP, click here.
Dreams -- Flights of the Imagination...march 22 2004...
I sometimes get the feeling that when I am asleep my spirit leaves my body, and wanders all over the world (and the universe), seeing great sights and occasionally meeting up with the souls of my friends. These experiences seem to come in waves. Last night for example (2004/03/22) I had quite a number of dreams that seemed to involve astral travel. In one of the dreams, I met up with Michael Jones, a buddy I knew from high school, and who I last saw in 1988, in the Australian town of Kiama (south of Sydney). With a name as common as the one he has, it is next to impossible to track him down on the Internet, even with all the recent advances in search engine accuracy. Nonetheless, in the dream I met Michael in a gym, and he asked me: "Did you like using the air mattresses, back when we were at school?" It was a strange thing to say, but not out of place in a dream, and I immediately found myself falling into an excited and passionate discussion -- so many things to say, to an old friend you have not seen in 15 years! He went on to say that he had moved to Sydney, and was living in the inner city, and he proudly displayed his new tattoo. Of course, this could all be dream nonsense, but if I ever do meet him again and find out what he has done in his life, and I see that he has a tattoo on his arm, and discover that he was living in the inner suburbs of Sydney in early 2004, then I will only have to conclude -- I am indeed psychic! And this website is the evidence!
I have this idea: that if we do leave our bodies in our sleep and meet up, before returning to our bodies to "wake up", then it is possible for us to exchange email addresses during our nocturnal rendevous's. I am now determined to ask someone for their email address the next dream I have. If I can remember their email address when I wake up, I can send them a message -- and that is proof that the dreamworld is more than just imagination! Watch this site for more updates on this experiment!
Later that night I had a dream about Akiko. It gave me the courage to send an email to her the next day. The dream achieved its objective -- we are now back on speaking terms. And the Akiko Revival has begun, or so I believe!
The Tom Cruise Effect...april 08 2004...
Now it is the cherry blossom season in Japan -- lots of flowers blooming out
of normally severely pruned and masacred trees, lots of severely pruned
people letting go with wild abandon in Tokyo's parks, getting drunk and
vomiting in the streets. I was at a park near my house the other night, and
actually it is one of the most famous parks in Japan for cherry blossoms
(although it is also packed with homeless people living in tents.) We were
having a good time, me and my crew, drinking beer and rice wine. Nearby our
group, another set of people had converted their mat into a wrestling ring,
and they were tossing each other onto the hard ground -- I could almost hear
the bones breaking! It was kind of offensive to watch, like sicko porn. It
was depravity for the sake of depravity. There would be some guy lying on
the ground wounded, and someone else pouring beer on to his head, while
someone else was vomiting and throwing his vomit all over the place, rubbing
into people's hair. As they would say in Japan, they were "Baka" --
"Idiots!" But I guess in Japan, there are many kinds of baka.
Earlier in the day, I was at another park, in the brilliant sunshine, with
members of this wierd religious cult -- Soka Gakkai. They're convinced that
I am going to be the one to introduce their religion to Australia (already,
Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock have become members in America , and the
religion is on the rise in Hollywood. It is like an Eastern version of
Scientology.) I was there at the park, and one of the Soka Gakkai recruits
said: "I have an idea. I will tell all the women in this park that you are Tom Cruise, and they will all come over here to talk to you, and then we
will get a chance to meet them." At the time, I thought it was a ridiculous
idea. I mean, as if they would think I was really Tom Cruise?
But my friend was right! Some women really thought I was Tom Cruise! They
wanted to take their photos with me! It was bizarre! They honestly fell for
Tokyo Modelling Agencies...april 12 2004...
I got my first ever piece of feedback regarding my site, and contrary to expectations, it wasn't negative! It was a message from a guy called Daniel, who wanted to know about modelling and acting agencies in Japan. I sent him this message, which I thought might be of interest to others wanting to work in the Japanese entertainment industry:
"I think it is pretty easy to find acting or modelling work in Japan. It doesn't depend on ability or experience, although that can help. A friend of mine from Australia is often going in big commercials and getting $3000 for one day's work. However, on the whole, it is not a high paying job. You often get only $100 for spending a full day on set, and they don't even feed you!
Anyway, here are two agencies you can contact in Tokyo:
Lazarus Modelling Agency -- (03) 5775-6125. (Talk to Tokiko).
A&R Modelling -- (090) 1859-6761. (Talk to Rocky)."
Ginseng High...april 15 2004...
One of the things I hope to document on this website are the various (and legal) psychadelic properties of common herbs and foods in Asia. I can still remember the surprise and bliss I felt when I first drinking Japanese tea on a daily basis, and out of nowhere came this marijuana-type high! I suddenly realised: you can get high drinking green tea! I suddenly realised, why traditional (and modern) Asian architecture and design is so colorful and trippy. It is because everyone in Asia is permanently high from green tea, and it is influenced everything -- even aesthetics and art! Of course, few people believe my claims about the psychoactive properties of green tea, but I know a high when I see one, so I don't care.
Today I bought and drank one of the strangest beverages I have ever seen before, which I found in a Korean store on Kan-nana-dori on the way to Kansai-rinkai-koen. Kan-nana-dori is one of the ugliest roads in the world, full of belching trucks and lined with depressing apartment blocks (euphemistically called "mansions" in Japan), car yards and empty concrete wastelands. When I saw the Korean shop I decided to take a look, because I like Korean food and want to eat it as much as possible, to get a taste for it. I was especially interested in seeing what Korean drinks I like, and that's when I found the ginseng drink. It was a small bottle with an actual ginseng root floating inside, kind of looking like an alien squid with tentacles dangling down at the bottom. Bizarre -- and I knew I had to have it!
To be honest, it didn't taste too bad -- kind of sweet and salty and earthy at the same time. For the first hour or two, there were no obvious effects. I was hoping that like green tea ginseng might have some pyschadelic effects, but it didn't seem to do anything. Then the high began, very slowly, very gradually. The first clue that something was changing in my consciousness came when I heard two young guys talking in Japanese and I could hear every syllable of what they said, even though my Japanese is pretty bad. But suddenly my mental power seemed to expand, and I could understand Japanese -- it was the coolest feeling in the world, a feeling of triumph! Later, walking the streets of the business district near Tokyo station, undeniable marijuana-like effects began to take place. It is hard to describe these effects to people who have never smoked marijuana or taken LSD, but for those who have, you know what I mean. Now it is a couple of hours since I drank this strange legal (not to mention healthy!) drink and I am thoroughly loving it -- Tokyo is such a cool place when you are off your face! I am listening to some music (Icelandic rock, Danish pop, etc) and it sounds so powerful and raw, I can hear every note and appreciate every tone and cadence. This is a real smart drug, and I can't wait until I go to Kasai-rinkai-koen again, and hunt down that Korean food shop with its strange ginseng root tonics!
I'm not the first to discover that ginseng gets you stoned. Read this woman's ginseng experience at Erowid Experience Vaults. She claims his ginseng high lasted a couple of days. Yippee -- it's not over yet!
Karaoke...april 18 2004...
I am starting to develop a taste for singing karaoke, after having been too shy to sing before, and the more I try it, the more I like it. I think it represents something of the Japanese culture -- the camaradarie of everybody singing some pop anthem in a drunken ecstasy, the cute miniaturisation of your karaoke booth, the way you can pick up a telephone and order another round of beers or a dried fish salad. So, I expect to spend many more hours singing karaoke in the future.
Last night I took these photos at our izakaya at Kanda.
Today I went on a tour of the Kanda/Akihabara/Otemachi region of Tokyo, which has a range of attractions including electronics neighbourhoods, acres of old bookshops, and a royal palace. One of the lesser but still interesting attractions is the Transportation Museum at Kanda.
Transportation -- particularly transportation by train -- seems to be an intrinsic part of Japanese culture, just as the car lies at the heart of modern culture in Australia and the USA. It forms a focus of life here in Japan, and every urban community is built with the train station at the very center. If you want to understand this undeniable aspect of modern Japanese culture, it is worth visiting the Transportation Museum, located at 25 Kanda-Sudacho, 1-chome, Chiyoda-ku (website: http://www.kouhaku.or.jp/). That the museum has a slightly tacky, run-down feel only complements the undeniable fact that Japan as a nation is slightly tacky and run-down -- a fading power.
Erika...april 26 2004...
This particular blogstream is entitled "Dreams -- Flights of the Imagaination" -- so it is fitting that this next entry is inspired by a dream. I seemed to have attained a level of pseudo-lucidity in my dreams recently -- often I know I am asleep in a dream when I am dreaming, and I use the experience as a chance to enquire about future events, that sort of thing. My new pet project at the moment, my latest experiment is to try to contact someone in the dreamworld, and then arrange to meet them in the real world. Perhaps, last night, I took my first step in that direction. Then again, perhaps it is just a figment of a bored and sexstarved imagination!
Urban Nightmares...april 30 2004...
The great irony is that Japanese people say they are so clean and so attuned to nature, but look around the place, what do you see -- this is one of the ugliest countries I have ever seen! Even third world countries look better, because in third world countries you can usually find vast areas of wild nature, untouched by man. In Japan they have covered all the nature with concrete. The only animals you see (in the Tokyo region at least) are urban scavengers like rats, crows and pigeons. And Japanese people have the nerve to say that they understand nature more than foreigners. It's like Americans saying that their country is the home of freedom. Well, if you are the home of freedom, why are you enslaving the Iraqi people, and bombing them into democracy? It doesn't add up.
Don't get me wrong, I love Japan, but only a fool would say that this is a beautiful place to live. I like Japan (Tokyo) for its sheer urbanity, its faded futurism, its BLACK RAIN/BLADERUNNER edginess. It is like a world where nature has been completely removed, and replaced with Disneyland. That's interesting, but it's not beautiful in the traditional sense. But where else in the world could you see a country as bizarre as this one?
Contemporary Japanese Theatre...may 01 2004...
Last week I watched a Japanese theatrical production (shibai) called "Chuu nikaina hitobito" or "Traversing People". It was kind of like a Japanese version of "Friends", and very entertaining and feeling-provoking, even if I only understood 20 per cent of what was said. From what I gathered, the story went like this: there's this group of Jappeople living in a share house, all about 30/31-years-old, with some kind of inexplicable attraction to mid 80s music (such as the Eurythymics) and 80s kitsch (an ET doll makes an appearance during the show). They are all slackers, losers, whose lives revolve around drinking and conversations. Essentially, everybody loves everybody else, but the other person doesn't love them back. At least, they love the other person, but not in THAT WAY. In Japan they call it "one-way love". So it is more than a love triangle, but a love star, a love pentagon. For example, there are two girls who both love the one man, but he is gay, and likes this other guy, who is not gay. That other guy, in turn, loves all the girls but because he is such an oaf and a slob, they don't love him. You get the picture. Anyway, the irony is, because they are all living together, and a part of each other's lives, they reach a sort of truce, and recognise that while they cannot pump the object of their desire, they can at least be together. So it finishes with a happy ending. And I thoroughly enjoyed it, and thought afterwards about what it would be like to live in that kind of situation -- a society of people who lusted after each other in a platonic way.
Sex...may 02 2004...
I have heard in certain African tribes, it is considered abnormal to have sex less than three times a day. In fact, some of them manage to have sex every couple of hours. A couple of hours of sex per day with multiple partners, that's my dream. A man can't live with just one wife -- polygamy is the answer. Mormon-style. Maybe I should head over to Africa or Utah (I've heard Greenland and the Eskimo countries are even more promiscous -- men will willingly share you their wife because they know she is hot and they want you to enjoy her too.)
Let's face it, what are the important things in life? Buying a new TV or SUV or dishwasher (but the downside is you have to work in an office every day, without fail, you can't just decide to not to come in if you don't feel like it, and you have to suck up to that creepy subclass of humanity called "management")... or, having sex (which is usually free)? The Africans have it made. The simple things in life. The simple things in life are the best. And we have the nerve to look down on them (the Africans, that is.) They should be looking down on us.
LOOKING BACK -- wollongong 1989
When I was 16 my Dad and the rest of us were
transfered to this mean industrial city called Wollongong (south of
Sydney), and I had to attend the local high school where there were
lots of Yugoslav kids (mostly Macedonians, but some Serbs and
Croats), whose fathers worked at the steelworks or in the mines.
Your typical working class hell. It was the biggest culture shock of
my life living there because up until then, I had only lived in
white neighbourhoods where everybody had an Anglo-Irish background.
I felt intimidated by and scared of the Yugoslav guys who seemed
fully adult with their fully grown moustaches and slicked back, dyed
hair and gold rings and cologne and all the rest -- all the macho
posturing. All their wierd names like "Dragon" and "Goran".
to hate living there so much. But I think now it was a good
introduction to the world. I had the whole world in my school. That
was a better education than the shit in the textbooks.
Fairies...may 17 2004...
I don't think I have told you this story before -- how the fairies welcomed me to Iceland! Maybe this sounds like a bizarre comment. But I will always remember that my very first impression of Japan, once I had entered Japanese airspace on my Singapore Airlines jet, was the view of the sun rising over the Pacific Ocean. Welcome to the Land of the Rising Sun! At the very same moment I saw the sunrise the pilot's voice came over the PA: "We have entered Japanese airspace... welcome to Japan!" I knew then, at that moment -- it was a gift from the Gods (the Gods of Japan.) It showed that Japan really wanted me to come and join it! You have to take your cues from Nature , I think!
A similar experience happened when I went to Iceland. I got on this flight from Copenhagen to Reykjavik.