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No. 98: Mar-Apr 1995

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How To Test For Lucid Dreaming

In a lucid dream, everything seems so real, and you can usually exert some control over the content and direction of the dream. If you wish, you can fly! Or, you can trigger specific types of lucid dreams by providing external stimuli, such as a specific piece of recorded music. Some lucid dreams do get out of control, however, and become nightmarish. But pleasant, controllable lucid dreams are the general rule. If you can't seem to get into lucid dreaming, apply to the Lucidity Institute, where you can purchase a Nova-Dreamer machine for $275. Thus armed, you can enter that Never-Never Land anytime you want.

But how does one know he or she is dreaming lucidly? There is a simple test that is not only strange but probably anomalous. During your dream find a shop or traffic sign, even a dollar bill or newspaper. Then, find a word of four or more letters. Look away, and then look back. If the word has changed when you look back, you are in a lucid dream. For reasons unknown, the brain centers controlling lucid dreaming cannot consistently process words of more than three letters!

(Foremski, Tom; "Designer Dreams," New Scientist, p. 50, December 24/31, 1994.)

From Science Frontiers #98, MAR-APR 1995. 1995-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987