Lucidity Letter - March 1982 - Vol. 1, No. 2

Lucidity Letter

1.      A Word Of Thanks  - 5 

2.      Is Dream Lucidity Work Another Reich’s Orgone Box - 6

              R.  D. Ogilvie

3.      Early Results With Hearne’s Dream Machine - 7

              Steven Venus

4.      Balance and Lucid Dreaming Ability: A Suggested Relationship - 7

              Jayne Gackenbach

5.      Switching On a Light While Lucid - 8

              Charles Tart

6.      Lucid Dreams, Out—of—Body Experiences and Near—death Experiences - 8

              Kenneth Ring, S. J. Blackmore and “Perspective”

7.      Imagery Skills and Lucid Dreaming Ability - 9

              S.   J. Blackmore

8.      More Sex Differences in Lucid Dreaming Frequency - 9

              S.   J. Blackmore

9.      Dreamspeaker Programme - 10

              Peter Fellows

10.     General Information Vol. 1, No. 2 - 10




I would like to take a moment to thank all of you for your encouragement in this newsletter endeavor. In fact, I probably received more reinforcement for starting this newsletter than during my entire academic career. Let me share some of the comments that I have received so you can all get a sense for the excitement that this are is engendering:



“Thank you very much for having me on the mailing list for your newsletter. It is extremely interesting and helpful. Thank you for sending it to me, and I look for­ward to the next issue.”

                                   1/6/82 — Julian Jaynes, Department of Psychology, Princeton University


“I received your newsletter-wonderful idea! I’m grateful that you’re doing this.”

                                                                                    12/6/82— Judy Malamud, New York City


“Thanks for keeping me up to date with your activities. A newsletter sounds great!’

                                                                 2/14/82 — Scott Sparrow, A.R.E., Virginia Beach, VA


“Let me congratulate you on starting your newsletter of lucid dreams. You will be the catalyst to really help this important field of investigation grow.”

                                                                     12/10/82 — Charles Tart, Department of Psychology,

                                                                                                         University of California, Davis


“I think that your newsletter is an excellent idea and I agree that the communications between professionals in the field should be improved.”

                                            1/4/82 — Peter Fellows, Centre for Inner Learning, Toronto, Canada


“I would like to commend you for the idea of your Lucidity Letter very sincerely and encourage you to carry on with it as frequently as seems appropriate. Your work in the area and the contacts you have made with us place you in a fine position to do so: I would hereby dub thee ‘Editor’.”

                                                                         1/12/82 — Bob Ogilvie, Medical Research Council,

                                                                                                                           Cambridge, England


“Thanks very much for sending me your Lucidity Letter. I think it fills a big gap and am delighted that you are able to provide time and attention to the project. It could well develop into a pivotal exchange point for professionals. Congratulations!”

                                                      12/10/81 — Patricia Garfield, Creative Dreaming International,

                                                                                                                  San Francisco, California


“There are more things going on in lucid dream research than I had realized. Your news­letter fills an important need and I support it wholeheartedly.”

                                                                                     12/8/81 — Tom Adler, Berkeley, California


“I like your first newsletter. My only suggestion for an improvement would be to cite sources for your information, also affiliations for the people.”

                               12/7/81 — Stanley Krippner, Humanistic Psy. Inst., San Francisco, California


“I think your idea about the newsletter is an excellent one. I send you my very best wishes for its success.”

                               12/29/81 — K. Ramakrishna Rao, Institute for parapsychology, Durham, NC


“I was quite pleased to receive the information about the Lucidity Newsletter. I think it’s a greatidea, and hope it gets off the ground. I’d be interested in seeing a dream lucidity association formed too.”

                  12/11/81 — Edward Hoffman, Broward psychological Services, Pembroke Pines, FL


“Absolutely essential, solved problem of lack of communication among researchers in the area.”

                                                                           3/2/82 — Stephen LaBerge, Stanford University


Again let me encourage you to send along names and addresses of other professionals or paraprofessionals, with research and/or clinical interests in lucid dreaming. Addition­ally, let me remind you that this newsletter is an ideal format for the sharing of ideas, observations and early research results.



Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol.1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 5.

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Is Dream Lucidity Work Another Reich’s Orgone Box?


“My reaction to the content of the first Lucidity Letter is mixed: pleasure is stimulated by the breadth of interesting ideas referred to: pain is stirred by the uncritical rush to literally “cash in” on the popular interest in lucidity by a number of professionals who must know that their ideas have not been subjected to sufficient careful scientific scru­tiny. Magic dream boxes, new therapies, and books all based upon as yet scant scientific evidence and overloaded with rich personal experience — these trends worry me.


Your small and select group of subscribers, nearly all psychologists, should not need to be reminded of the very short scientific history of lucid dream investigations, dating roughly from the mid 1970’s, and of the struggle to achieve scientific respectability for this important area of dream research which is still taking place. Nor should they have difficulty remembering the parapsychological wasteland from which we have been trying to extract lucid dreams. Now, when a few studies have shown that lucid dreaming can be fruit­fully researched we may be in danger of tossing it back into the uncritical quagmire from which we’ve begun to wrestle it. Public pressures are difficult to resist — remember that other psychological panacea, Reich’s orgone box……?      


“It’s my sincere hope that 1982 will see an increasing number of carefully conducted sur­veys and laboratory studies of lucid dreaming published in established psychological jour­nals. Best wishes to all engaged in that endeavour.


                                                      R.D. Oglvie, M.A.

                                                      Visiting Scientist

                                                      Medical Research Council

                                                      Applied Psychology Unit

                                                      Psychophysiology Section

                                                      Cambridge, England

Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 5

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Early Results With Hearne’s Dream Machine


“You may be interested to know that Newcastle University Department of Psychology has re­cently purchased one of Keith Hearne’s dream machine’s (it is not available to the general public yet). So far I have used it for approximately three weeks on myself and two other subjects, but have found it extremely disappointing so far. It has induced no reported lucid dreams. The main trouble seems to be that the electric shock to the wrist, adminis­tered when REM step is detected by a breathing rate monitor, usually wakes the sleeper. Only on two occasions has the electric shock been incorporated into a dream. This may be due to the fact that we have been relying on reports given the next morning. Our next step will be to wake subjects through the night after each series of electric shocks to see if they have been forgetting dreams incorporating electric shocks or indeed lucid dreams themselves.”

                                                      Steven Venus

                                                      Department of Psychology

                                                      Newcastle University




Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 7.


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Balance and Lucid Dreaming Ability: A Suggested Relationship


Two lines of evidence support a relationship between balance and lucidity. Balance emerged from the factor structure of the content of lucid dreams but not from the content of ordi­nary dreams and REM burst have been found to reliably precede lucidity, such bursts result­ing from internal stimulation of the vestibular nuclei. Since it is unclear whether the proposed relationship between balance and dream lucidity exists on a gross motor or on a vestibular level both were recently measured by myself.


Students who reported no history of severe ear problems, bodily injury, or motion sickness and who did not report visual problems not correctable by glasses and who differed in the frequency with which they reported experiencing dream lucidity participated in the dynamic and static gross motor balance phase of this study. Subjects were asked to walk on a balance beam (dynamic balance) and to balance on a stabilometer platform (static balance). Some were recontacted and their vestibular sensitivity was assessed using the Hallpike procedure of caloric stimulation. Responsive eye movements constituted the dependent variable.


Sex X dreamer analyses of covariance with dream recall as the covariant were then calcu­lated. It can be seen below that three sex x dreamer interactions reached significance; nystagmus beats/second and length and stabilometer errors. A similar pattern for nonlucid and frequent lucid dreamers emerged for the two vestibular measures. Female frequents were found to exhibit more beats per second and longer nystagmus than female nevers whereas the opposite was the case for males. That is, male nevers exhibited higher scores on these measures than’ male frequent lucid dreamers. A slightly different pattern was found with stebilometer errors, female frequent lucid dreamers had fewer balance errors than any of the other sex x dreamer groups. Group differences in spontaneous nystagmus does not account for these interactions as no main effects or interactions were found for these measures.


         Means for Sex by Dreamer Interactions





































*Body weight was an additional covariant for this analysis.


Additional statistical analysis to further determine the meaning of these results are continuing.

                                                                                         Jayne Gackenbach, Ph.D.

                                                                                          Department of Psychology

                                                                                                University of Northern Iowa

                                                                                                Cedar Falls, IA

Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 7.


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Switching On a Light While Lucid


I have a content item with respect to Keith Hearne’s observation that none of us lucid dreamers could switch on a light. He mentioned that to me last spring when I was in Eng-~ land, and I thought about it off and on for some time. A few months later I had an ordinary dream (non—lucid) in which I needed to switch on the lights in a room, so I flipped on the wall switch and a large number of fluorescent fixtures came on in the ceiling over­head, drastically increasing the illumination. The room was already fairly brightly lit, so the feeling on experiencing the light in an ordinary dream, and the possibility of switching on that light is quite high. I don’t know whether this will generalize to lucid dreams, but if it can happen in an ordinary dream, I don’t see why it can’t happen in a lucid dream.”


                                            Charles Tart, Ph. D.

                                                Department of Psychology

University of Calif., Davis

                                         Davis, California


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 8.

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Lucid Dreams, Out—of—Body Experiences and Near—Death Experiences


Over the last several months several items have come to my attention regarding the rela­tionship between lucid dreams, out—of—body experiences (OBE) and near—death experience. One of the major reasons that I got involved in lucid dreaming research was their apparent similarity to OBE’s and the role of OBE’s in near—death experiences. My recent interest in this relationships was sparked by a letter I received in response to materials on dream lucidity I had sent the International Association for Near—Death Studies, Inc., Kenneth Ring, the director, wrote:


I know a little about lucid dreams (having read about them for several years and having had a few myself) and I’ve met and talked to Steve LeBerge. I still don’t know what an OBE is, but I’m not convinced it is a lucid dream (though I’m not closed to the possibility either). From what I’ve read (I’m referring to some stuff —— and it may not yet be pub­lished- by Glen Gabbard, Stu Twemlow and Fowler Jones), I thought the EEG patterns asso­ciated with OBEs and lucid dreams are quite different. Am I wrong? I also know that near—death survivors usually not only deny but deny emphatically that what they experience while out—of—body is anything like a dream, even a lucid dream, I daresay. But who knows-the question is still an intriguing one and perhaps your research and that others will shed some clarifying light into a murky corner of our consciousness. Concerning the impor­tance of lucidity at the moment of death, who could disagree? In my own case, though, I find it very hard to be fully lucid even in the moments of my everyday life.”

                                                     Kenneth Ring, Ph.D.

                                                     Department of Psychology

                                                     University of Connecticut

                                                     Storrs, Connecticut


A few months later these two items came to my attention. First a letter from S. J. Black-more restating an often found relationship between lucidty and OBE’s.


“I have done several surveys on OBEs but usually included questions on lucid dreams as well. Generally the same people tend to have both experiences and also, when I have asked about them, flying dreams. However, this may he an artifact of more frequent dream recall. The table shows some of these results.





% lucid dreams

X2 with OBEs

X2 with flying dreams

1. Surrey University



6.7 (p < .01)


2. Bristol University



3.7 n.s.

6.6 (p < .01)

3. Amersterdam University



8.9 (p < .05)

11.8 (p < .001)


                                                      Dr. S. J. Blackmore                                                                                                                        

                                                                                                                        Department of Anatomy

                                                                                                The Medical School

                                                                                                            University of Bristol



Second, an item from Perspective, a monthly research service published by the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.), Virginia Beach, Virginia. Dr. Richard Kohr, director of the A.R.E. Workbook Questionnaire Research Project, identified three groups of respondents, who differed in whether or not they had had a near—death experience. The experiencing group indicated they had come close to death; had a deep, moving personal experience, and had one or more of the pix types of experiences described in the research of Raymond Moody and Kenneth Ring. A second group indicated that they had come close to death and may or may not have had a moving personal experience. The third group was referred to as the Non—Experiencing group, composed of persons who had never come close to death. In terms of dream states the Experiencing group reported a greater frequency of dreaming in color, greater frequency of unusual dream states such as LUDICITY and vibra­tions and a greater range of types of sense modalities in dreams.


                                                     Association for Research

                                                       and Enlightenment

                                                     Virginia Beach, Virginia


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 8.

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Imagery Skills and Lucid Dreaming Ability


“I am also very interested in the relationship between imagery skills and OBEs and lucid dreams. In one study I used Sheehan’s shortened version of the Bett’s vividness of imagery scale and found no significant differences between those who had and had not had lucid dreams. A second study using Cordon’s control of imagery questionnaire also gave no differences. So if imagery skills are important for lucid dreaming these tests are not adequate for investigating this.”

                                                        Dr. S. J. Blackmore

                                                        Department of Anatomy

                                                        The Medical School

                                                        University of Bristol


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 9.

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More Sex Differences in Lucid Dreaming Frequency


“I noted the discussion of sex differences in the Letter. In my study with Amsterdam students I found no age differences but those who claimed to have lucid dreams were more often male (X2 = 4.19, 1 df p < .05).”

                                                        Dr. S. J. Blackmore

                                                        Department of Anatomy

                                                        The Medical School

                                                        University of Bristol


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 9.

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Dreamspeaker Programme


“At the moment I am working on another project that I call the Dreamspeaker Programme. It involves conditioning consciousness so that the dreamer might not only bring waking consciousness into the dreamstate, but also bring dreaming consciousness into the waking state.


“This project is still in its early stages, but already the preliminary findings suggest several interesting potential ramifications. The ASC known as out of body experiences suggests that it is possible to ‘see’ and ‘hear’ without using the physical organs. We seem to have found that it may be possible to alter consciousness so that while the eyes and ears are blocked from perception, the subject can ‘see’ and ‘hear.’ More, this seems to be a learned skill that is more readily facilitated by initially training the subject in lucid dreaming.


Another area being explored involves access to other than conscious information while in the dreamstate or in an ASC. There is reason to believe that an incredible’ source of in­formation is available to the dreamer. To date our work suggests information as varied as personal health data and stock market fluctuations. The bent of the information received seems to depend on the interests of the dreamer (to a large extent, but not exclusively.)”

                                                 Peter Fellows

                                                                                     The Centre for Inner Learning

                                                                                                             Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 10.

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1. Workshops and Therapy — Here are more names of individuals offering workshops

and therapy utilizing lucid dreaming abilities.


“.I also run a small group training in relaxation. Imagery and so on and trying to develop control of OBEs and lucid dreams.’

                                                   Dr. S. J. Blackmore

                                                   Dept. of Anatomy

                                                   The Medical School

                                                   University of Bristol

                                                   Bristol, England, BS8 lTD


“I offer dream tutorials and seminars with a focus on lucid dreaming.”

Patricia Garfield, Ph.D.

Creative Dreaming Int’l

415 Spruce Street San Francisco, CA 94118


Additional names and addresses include:


1)         Ed Garner, 432 Townsend Drive, Aptos, CA 95003

2)         Dr. Fred K. Tenherr, West Main Street, New Salem, MA 01355

3)         Edith Gilmore, 3 Walker Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

4)         Simone Alter & Dana Cushing, Center for Creative Dream Exploration, Box 134, Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA 02238


2. Books — Three more recently published books with sections on lucid dreaming have

   come to my attention. They include:


Campbell, Jean. Dreams Beyond Dreaming, Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Co.,


Thurston, M. A. Visions and Prophecies for a New Age, Virginia Beach, VA:

    A.R.E Press, 1981

Blackmore, S. 3. Beyond the Body:        An Investigation of Out—of—the—Body

    Experiences, England, Heinemann, 1982 (in press)


3. Press —  As I mentioned in the last newsletter, lucid dreaming is becoming a bit of a “media event.” Bob Ogilvie nicely pointed out some of the problems with premature publicity but like it or not the attention is upon us. The March issue of OMNI maga­zine has recently come out with a major article on this work and another such article will appear in the April issue of Smithsonian magazine. Additionally, the ABC’s television news program entitled “20/20” will air a segment on the lucid dreaming work of Stephen LeBerge and Patricia Garfield sometime in March. Radio talk shows requests are also occurring with some frequency.


Finally, several professionals interested in dreaming have begun newsletters aimed primarily for the general population. Regarding this network of dream newsletters, Sally Shute of Hackensack, NJ writes:


 “A national dream newsletter, ‘Dream Network Bulletin,’ the result of a cooperative effort among Bill Stimson, Henry Reed, and Sally Shute, will feature three different newsletters related to dreams. Bill Stimson’s, ‘The Dream Community,’ will explore dreams and related areas (Bill Stimson, 333 W. 21st Str., Apt. 2FW, N.Y., NY 10011). Henry Reed’s, ‘Oneiro Critica: Dream  Interpreters’ Newsletter,’ focuses his first issue on family work with dreams (Henry Reed, 503 Lake Dr., Virginia Beach, VA 23451). Sally Shute’s, ‘Lucidity and Beyond,’ focuses on lucid dreaming, creative dreaming, ‘dream machines,’ the future of dreams, and the development of lucid dreamers’ study groups and projects. Study group leaders and writers are needed (Sally A. Shute, Lucidity & Beyond, P.O. Box 746, Maywood, NJ 07607). Articles are also needed for the

 other two newsletters.”


4. Translation Needed — In a recent review of Index Medicus by one of my student a reference for lucid dreaming work going on in Czechoslovakia in 1966 was found. From what we have been able to gather from the article, it may involve electrophysiological recording techniques. Needless to say if this work on dream lucidity was going on in 1966 behind the iron curtain one wonders where they are today. If you’d like to contribute to the cost of translation, please send along contributions to me. Those who contribute will, of course, receive a copy of the translation. I had a turn of the century German article (clinical evaluation) on flying - lucid dreams translated about a year ago and it ran about $200. For those of you seeking funding (or your work, if a case can be made that lucid dreaming research on a fairly sophis­ticated level has been going on in communist countries since the mid—sixties, perhaps funding agencies (i.e., government?) might take more of an interest in the phenomenon.


Lucidity Letter Back Issues, Vol. 1, No. 2, March, 1982, page 10.


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