How do you know you’re awake right now? How can you be sure? Sure, you think you’re awake. You feel fully conscious and aware. You can see your surroundings. You can move and think and all of your sensory receptors feel active and operational. There are multiple states of being where one can experience all of the thoughts described above and one of them is the state of sleep.
Now you may notice that your eyes are open and you are not in your bed. But that doesn’t mean you aren’t experiencing reading this in a dream. When you dream, do you just dream about how you’re tucked away under your covers with your eyes closed, clutching your stuffed animals? You dream about sometimes realistic and sometimes unrealistic happenings. If you were really awake and reading a newspaper, would you be reading about whether or not you were dreaming? That sounds pretty unrealistic. Why would a newspaper publish something like that?
Now, that you’ve reached the third paragraph of this surreal, unrealistic newspaper column you are probably questioning how you take for granted that all of your conscious feelings strictly imply that you are awake and not asleep. Good. You are developing skepticism. You are questioning what you’ve always been told. You are investigating your consciousness; you are taking a journey inside of your brain. You’re enjoying this, right? If you’re still stubbornly denying that you may in fact be experiencing rapid eye movement sleep at the moment and are still certain that you’re awake, loosen up a bit. Relax. Take a deep breath.
Now I must acknowledge that at this point, some of the readers have realized that they are in fact asleep. These readers believe that they are reading this nonsensical column in a fictitious, yet plausible setting they are experiencing in a dream. To these readers I say, not so fast! Just as I’ve taught you to question whether or not you are awake, I want you to do the converse as well. Are you SURE you’re really asleep? If you are indeed asleep, how can you be reading this impractical piece of published journalism?
OK, so now some of the confirmed dreamers are becoming aware. Those readers who were fast asleep just moments ago are now understanding that all of the feelings they are aware of are a part of a dream. A dream in which they are reading a quixotic piece of writing in a newspaper. Now that these readers are aware in their dreams, they are experiencing a lucid dream. They are dreaming. But their sleeping mind knows they are dreaming. They are conscious that their experiences are a product of REM sleep. To those readers who wish to stop reading, just wake up! You are in a lucid dream. This article is a dream, you can stop reading it if you choose. You can choose to wake up. Go ahead, do it. WAKE UP. Decide to wake up and you won’t have to read another word of this malarkey ever again. Make the choice. Wake yourself up and end this lucid dream.
You are still reading this nonsense now. What does this mean? It means you weren’t one of the lucid dreamers! Sure, you are indeed a dreamer, but you don’t know that you are dreaming. I know you are, but you don’t. You can’t stop yourself. You can’t wake up. You can’t put this away from your thoughts. You can’t make this nightmare of a column disappear. If you could you would, but you can’t. Because you are asleep.
I know, at the beginning of the column I admitted that some readers were awake and some were asleep and dreaming. But now I know that all of the readers are asleep and dreaming. The awake readers were sure this would be of no use to them and have moved on to something productive. The lucid dreamers escaped this nightmare. But you’re stuck here. You are dreaming and you have no control over it. You’ll wake up eventually and have a vague memory of this surreal crap. But for now, you’re fast asleep and there’s nothing you can do about it. When you wake up in the morning, don’t forget to grab a copy of The Daily Cardinal.