In our series of letters from African journalists, film-maker and columnist Farai Sevenzo looks at the importance of lucid dreaming

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Lets say you’ve been dreaming about a beautiful princess and you wanted to know
her name. First, you would have to open a book to find the right word. Then
you would have to flip a light switch to read. Finally, you would have to
switch to a different object. Now, the word “name” is printed in bold in
a different place. It’s not in a different spot next to the light switch.

Why is this important? Because you need to know where to turn on the light in
dream land, or flip the switch, or turn it off, in order to reach the final
goal.

Here are some methods I’ve used to try to get into lucid and dream land. These
are things you can do at any time. They’re not magic. They’re just ways of
tricking your brain with the right tool or technique to reach your goal.

1) If a woman calls you on the phone.

2) If you look at the sunset.

3) If you’re trying to fly.

4) If you’re trying to reach the moon. The moon. I guess this is the easiest
one to do, because when we turn on the light in the sun, we’ll eventually
realize that the sun is a moon. And the moon is a star. They can’t be
in two places at once. And so when I look at the sun, I know I’m dreaming. The
sun is a perfect example because it’s one and only source of light in the solar
system. The moon is the only light that’s visible in the night sky.
But it’s not the light the sun is the most powerful source of. The sun
is the planet where the strongest star is formed. The moon is a “dwarf” star.
But because of its proximity to the sun, it’s actually a gas giant.

Now, if you can create a lucid dream about a gas giant like the moon, you’d
have a lucid dream of the sun. How would this help you? Well, if you’re
fortunate enough to have a lucid dream, you know that in a lucid dream, you
can accomplish anything.

I was thinking to myself, “Okay, now I’m dreaming I’m a moon. Why am I a
dwarf star? Why isn’t the sun on the ceiling? It’s just weird. But it’s not
hard to figure out. But I’m not going to let myself go there because I can’t
control the energy of my dream. This is a good thing to know in a dream,
or it would be a terrible thing to know. We’d feel anxious and we wouldn’t know
how to get out of it. But we can’t know it. We can just dream whatever we
want to dream and be okay.”

You have to realize that when you’re dreaming, what you’re dreaming is
everything. And it’s not just the moon and the sun. It’s the stars, it’s
the planets, it’s the galaxy, it’s your favorite comic book characters.
It’s the universe itself. It can be anything. Anything could be the thing that
is your dream. You dream everything and you can choose to do anything.

You can be whatever you want to dream. The only thing you can’t do in a dream
is change your character. You can’t become the super hero or the princess.

So how do you know what you are dreaming? You don’t. You just know it’s a
dream. That doesn’t mean that you’re dreaming what you think you’re dreaming.
If you dreamed yourself as the hero, you could wake up and realize you were
waking up in the middle of a nightmare. But you can’t make the dream become the
dream. That’s the problem with lucid dreaming. You can’t do anything to make the
dream become the dream.

But you can change how the dream feels by just changing the tools you use to
pursue your goal. If you want to fly, you can get a plane. If you want to know
the moon, you might as well be in a dream that’s on a spaceship or a space
station, or any other place where you can get into your dream and work on the
way. And so it’s not about controlling the dream, it’s about changing how you
use your tools. And that’s what I’m talking about when I say it is never
necessary to control the dream.

Now, I’m not suggesting that you turn off the light switch and fly to the Moon
and then find the moon. I’m just talking about how you use the light switch. You
can fly to the Moon, but if it’s a really dark airplane, you won’t be able to
see anything. If you can fly to the Moon in a moonlight, you can’t fly in the
darkness. The moon is just a tool. It can provide light and a place to land upon,
but if it’s not in the sky, you can’t see it. It’s the same reason why your
computer will not recognize your drive as a hard drive when it has no light
source or drive. Your drive is only recognized as a hard drive when it’s in
full color.

It’s not that I want you to be able to fly to the moon, or find the moon. In
my lucid dreaming, I want to know who my princess is so that I can give the
moon back to Mars. I don’t have to have a moon in person to get the moon back
to Mars. I just have to realize that the moon itself is a spaceship or a
space station. So I’m not asking you not to have a moon. If you could have a
moon, that would be great. But I’m not going to let you control the moon. I’ll
show you how to trick your brain into finding the moon. My plan is to trick
the sun into showing itself to me. For example, if I fly into the sky, I will
see the sun rise. I will see the sun set. And I will be able to see all of the
luminosity of the sunrise and sunset. In a lucid state, you can see the sun, and
you can read the words in the book, so you can find out what the star looks
like. I will not have to do anything else to reach my goal. Once I’m dreaming,
however, a rocket might be necessary to get there. But I’ll be able to pull
that off. Once the rocket happens, will I be able to do anything? No. Once it
happens, I will know a lot more, but I won’t know what my life would have been
like if I hadn’t had access to the moon at all.

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