The Evolution of Dreams

Hello everyone.  Here is an article I wrote about Astral Projection for the relatively new Internet magazine Darkness Within.  The e-magazine is horror film and book relate, but my horror related novels deal with the protagonist  touching  upon, or discovering the God within himself. So the CEO of Darkness Within Ezine asked if I wanted to write a monthly column.  I said sure, anything for the cause. So my first article is about the evolution of dreams. Next month’s article is entitled,  Meditation and Neuroplasticity.  Please forgive the formatting,  I’m in the Catskills mountains and using my cell phone.  I hope. you enjoy…also, it’s about five pages of single of single space.  Cheers Frank

    All of us have Darkness Within, some more than others. For those of us who seek to purge the stain of humanity’s evolutionary stagnation, and free the mind from its prison of human flesh, read on. But beware, for once the ride has begun, you won’t get off, and only you will hear your screams.
The out of body experience or astral projection is the sensation that your consciousness is separated from your physical body. This alternate body can comprise an exact duplicate of the physical body, or it may entail a ‘floating eye’ perspective, much like a person may have when they are normally dreaming or having a lucid dream. However, there is an immense difference between these three dream states. Many people have difficulty differentiating between nocturnal dreams, the kind we all have, and the precursor to astral projection, lucid dreaming. In lucid dreaming, which is rare, the individual can control the visions and change their dream environment, while having full use of their cognitive functions. However, the imagery is comprised of subconscious wishes and terrifying apparitions. There is no real world interaction. The fully conscious individual cannot breach the tightly woven fabric of the physical universe and cannot enter higher realms of existence. The third dream state, much rarer and challenging, if not impossible for some to achieve, is the Out of Body Experience or Astral Projection. Here, the individual separates his/her consciousness from their physical body, slicing through the fabric of matter, to experience the physical universe directly or travel the astral planes, where gods and demons reign.
                I believe that these three states of the sleeping mind are not independent of one another but lay on a continuum of personal growth and achievement. That is to say, as he/she evolves their consciousness, by a variety of means, their dreaming states will also advance, ending with the ability to separate his/her astral body from their physical body at will. There is nothing like the feeling of your mind, consciousness, astral body, soul, or whatever your particular culture chooses to call it, as it rises out of your sleeping form, fully awake and aware, with all of his/her memories intact. But now, free from the constraints of the world of matter, you are set to explore the universe, to travel to higher planes of existence, and perhaps, meet your Higher Self, the Divine spark, your Holy Guardian Angel, the Christ within you. (I use the term, Christ, not in a Christian sense, but as a commonly understandable meaning for a fully evolved soul in the material world, i.e., Christ Consciousness). Alister Crowley was quoted as saying, “It should never be forgotten for a single moment that the central and essential work of the Magician is the attainment of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel.”
All of us have had dreams that provoke profound states of anxiety. We sometimes wake to say, “Thank God it was just a dream.” Better yet are dreams of pure hedonistic pleasures, the kind when upon waking, you lay still hoping to return to your forbidden desires. Science has long questioned the reason why humans, and for that matter, animals, dream. One theory purports that dreams are practice for daily living, a trait that would have come in handy to primitive humans cowering in a dark cave at night, dreaming of hunting or trapping. Others believe that dreams stem from subconscious desires, where they can be safely enjoyed without harm coming to the physical form. Or that that fears and threats experienced throughout the course of the day, bubble up from suppressed regions of the ego to play itself out, thus relieving the physical body of the harmful effects of stress. All these theories are valid, yet to my knowledge, none has proposed that dreams, and their progressive stages, are stepping stones to the next phase of Humanity’s evolution, which is the ability to separate his/her consciousness from the physical body at will.
Herein is the key. We all experience the alternate reality of the sleeping mind, whether
you are a saint or a sinner. However, I believe it takes a more spiritual seeker, or mystical explorer, to have a lucid or second dream stage. (The two italicized designations are used loosely). With lucid dreaming, the individual may wake in his/her dreamscape or may rise out of his/her physical body as in astral projection. However, the difference is in the content of the experience; what a person sees, hears, or engages in. In the normal or first dream stage, the subconscious mind shapes the experience, preventing lucidity from occurring or causing its premature termination. Wicked things and slashing monster may attack, tsunamis could drown you, or death may occur, shocking you awake. Yet with practice, (practice of a particular kind), the individual in the lucidscape can learn to control the events, and with a flick of the hand, demons turn coward, tsunamis part their waters, and death is no longer feared.
         With stage one dreams, no proof is needed for we all experience them. This is different with lucid dreaming. Many have claimed to be able to control their nocturnal fantasies, yet, for one who has experienced the ability, their claims are clearly a fabrication of the false self to lift the ego and create a sense of ascendancy. However, the experience of lucid dreaming has been documented in studies and has been achieved in laboratory settings. For example, when the subject successfully awakens in the dreamscape, that individual has total control of their environment and actions in the dream world and can control the physical eye movements of their sleeping body. Having been instructed by the researcher to move his/her eyes in a particular sequence, the subject, once becoming lucid, move their eyes in the predetermined pattern, perhaps three times to the left and three times to the right. That movement will elicit corresponding eye movement in the sleeping subject as indicated by electrodes attached to the subject’s eyelids, thus confirming that the sleeping subject is lucid within the dreamscape.
           Additionally, some subjects experience the lucidscape as a ‘lifting away’ from their body and observing their lucidscape as if they were standing in the real world. No waking within a normal dream occurs. The subject’s experience entails sitting up in bed, standing and gazing at their sleeping body. This could be an indication that the subject is not having a lucid dream, but experiencing the separation of their astral body from their physical body.
               The difference between lucid dreaming and astral projection is in understanding the origin of what is experienced and the progress of daily practice. However, this understanding and practice do not take place in the lucidscape, but rather entails sitting on a pillow for extended periods of meditation. I believe that meditation is the key to eliminating the individual of suppressed desires and fears, thus clearing the clutter of images in the dreamscape, allowing lucidity to develop and achieved. Meditation brings the subconscious mind to the forefront of consciousness for personal examination, exposing repressed attitudes and conditioning. With this knowledge gained, he/she is no longer a slave to primitive desires or irrational fears. Without these distractions, the dreaming mind now has the ability to become aware of itself.
The practitioner of lucid dreaming, free of unfettered images, can then enter the astralscape, that dimension, which I believe, is the precursor to the physical world, giving form and substance to all matter. Called Yesod, it is the foundation of all magickal work. This tradition of thought comes from the Jewish Kabbalah, as adapted by Western occultists. The theory is that if you change a variable in the astral world, through either ritual or projecting your consciousness, then you change that variable in the physical world. Additionally, with awareness of the astralscape, the practitioner, having confronted his/her subconscious affects, may walk among the world of matter. Herein is another mystery where the tales of shapeshifting and doppelgangers originate, but that is for another time.
Therefore, lucid dreaming and astral projection are part of a continuum of awareness and training, and the experience will be dependent upon the progress and extent an individual purges their subconscious mind through meditation. Without this purging, the neophyte will travel in a world where suppressed wishes and past experiences impinge upon his/her experience, preventing the practitioner from becoming lucid, limiting it, as he/she becomes lost amongst his/her fear and desires. The seasoned dream traveler, having uncovered the subconscious, laying it bare through years of meditation, progresses unhindered by false and deleterious visions and sees the physical world as is, and if preferred, may rise himself/herself to higher plains of existence.
             Writer of horror and dark fantasy with a spiritual connotation; Astral projection, occult sciences, Enochian magick . . . And sitting in half lotus for decades.
Frank Julius Palumbo was born in the Bronx in December of 1964. He has worked as a carpenter, a freelance illustrator, and is now currently involved in Law enforcement. His studies include Psychology and Neuropsychology, and he has been practicing Zen Buddhism and the Kabbalah for over thirty years.

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The Enochian Wars: Armageddon Unleashed. Published by Eternal Press
Enochian-Wars-Armageddon-Unleashed at Amazon.com
Planet Nibiru, known to the ancient Sumerians and spoken about in their writings on stone tablets thousands of years ago, has returned from its long orbit around the sun. This time, the inhabitants, huge winged gargoyles, plan to reap that which they sowed on their last passing, leaving Mankind fighting for both body and soul. Completely devastating the Earth with global Electromagnetic Pulse Nuclear bombs, Earth is suddenly left defenseless. Thousands of rectangular ships plummet in and around New York City and begin their erratic movement towards one goal; coalescing and forming a great wall around the metropolis and creating a central tower. As New York City is brought to its knees, Jack Savage, a veteran NYPD officer and longtime dabbler in the Occult, practicing a little known form a magick called Enochian, is transformed into a being with talents similar to that of Earth’s new masters. That is, the ability to separate your soul-body from your physical body at will. Savage, along with his cynical partner Gilmore Boyle and Ol’ Willie-be-Good, a homeless crack addicted Vietnam veteran, begin the hopeless quest of defeating the Harvesters of Humanity.

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About Frank Julius Palumbo

Frank Julius Palumbo is a native New Yorker where he has worked in law enforcement for the past fifteen years. He has a deep interest in both religion and science, with a particular focus on the Kabala, Buddhism, and quantum physics. He is a student of Zazen meditation and has been practicing it daily for the past thirty years. He enjoys painting and sculpting, and his work has been featured on magazine covers. Frank spends his time with his family in the Catskills Mountains, hiking, fishing, and camping.
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