Night Terrors, The Dark Side, and Evil
 
If you have night terrors, take heart! 
 
It simply means you are progressing along the spiritual path.

Since I was a little kid, I have always been a big chicken.  If I watched a scary movie, I'd have nightmares.  I dreamed of Freddy Kruger and I dreamed of the clown from “It”.

Most kids feel safe when they hide in their covers, but I never did.  When I was 5, I rolled too far and fell out of my bed.  When I hit the carpeted floor, I woke up.  I was facing the dreaded underneath the bed that all kids seem to fear.  I was completely wide awake and I clearly saw a man sitting Indian style, wearing a loincloth under my bed.  As if the man was not scary enough, his head went into my mattress.  All I saw of this man was his body up to the neck.  It almost looked like his head was my bed…

I was so scared, and the only thing I could do was to get back in bed and get away from him.  But even the bed didn’t feel safe anymore.

20 years after that, I told this story to friends who were into Buddhism, Zen, and the like.  They thought this was awesome, an omen of what was to come. “His head was the bed!” they kept saying and looking at each other astonished, as if they all knew some wonderful secret.

When I was in my preteens and teen years, I became deeply spiritually charismatic and I began to study occult and mystical books.  That’s when the night terrors began.  I would have very vivid dreams and be totally frozen in bed.  Some of these dreams seemed to repeat.  Often I would go over to Mom and Dad’s room and lay on the floor next to their bed when I was scared.  I recall one night vividly – I had a nightmare, I got up, turned on the hall light, and went over and fell asleep on their floor.   I woke up the next morning before anyone else – in my own bed.  The hall light was not on and I had purposefully left it on.  I questioned everyone and no one else had awoken in the night.  *This incidence baffled me for years.*

At the same time, I would feel strange sensations while falling asleep at night.  I would feel physical things – like something was touching me.  I would often get waves of adrenalin – out of nowhere - that scared me.  I would feel things in my legs a lot, tingles and vibrations.  All of this stuff just scared me worse and I would spend hours praying and trying to ignore it.  At the time, I was scared that it was demons or poltergeists and telling anyone about it just made it worse instead of better.

When I was 20 I joined a group that studied a book called “A Course in Miracles” and meditated together.  I tried to learn meditation, but I just fell asleep and snored.  I was so embarrassed that I only went a few times to their meditation and then stopped.  I tried it at home, but I would stop breathing and come out of it like I was drugged.  It scared the life out of me.  I asked tons of people about this but most of them just acted like I was crazy or being too dramatic so I stopped meditating, scared out of it by this weird phenomenon.

When I first practiced lucid dreaming, I would hold an amethyst crystal in my hand all night long.  I trained myself to hold it and not let go.  Over many months, I stopped dropping it or losing it in the bed and I would awake the next morning still holding it.  I would use this crystal if I had a night terror.  I would remember that I had the crystal in my hand.  One time in the dream, I looked at my hand because I could feel the crystal there – but in the dream my hand was empty.  I felt the crystal and in doing so I woke up.  So I would “use” the crystal as my doorway out of any scary dreams.  A few times I used the feel of the bed on my back in the same way.  I did feel safer doing this, but the practice slipped away from me after about a year.

I really began to lucid dream in my 20s.  I had tons of flying dreams, but that is as far as it went.   If I had emotional battles with people in my life that day, that night I would have some type of night terror.  Especially if the fight happened before I went to bed.  I knew this and I would beg friends and family not to get mad at me before bed or start a fight then.  If they did, I would be in such terror from dreams that I couldn’t sleep much at all.

When I was in my early 30s, I finally put my foot down and said enough is enough.  I would still have an occasional night terror, but I pretty much refused to do anything spiritual, occult, or even think about anything that would promote this dark side of me to come out.  I just didn’t “go there” anymore and it stopped for a while.

In my later 30s, my friend bought me some Reiki (distance energy healing) and I laid down on the couch everyday to receive this Reiki.  This went on for 5 days, 1 hour per day.  I could literally feel in my body, where this Reiki master was working.  Afterwards, he would send an email and tell me what he did and what problems he found.  His story always matched what I felt.  One of the last days he worked on me, I felt my third eye turn on a teeny tiny bit and I saw it rotate like a yin yang going in a circle. 

This experience encouraged me to meditate and I began to mediate whole heartedly.   And I had many supernatural experiences, some within the first 2 months.  It all happened very quickly. 

Some of the stuff scared the crap out of me.  I would tell someone, and they would scare me even more by telling me to take it very seriously and pray before I meditated or to shield myself with shielding exercises.  I began to use protection talismans, catholic rosaries, and anything else I could think of.  None of that stuff worked or seemed to work for long.

And I was afraid, deathly afraid.  I had run from this dark side all of my life.  But I was not going to now.  I realized I was having a kundalini awakening (Psychic Opening), and I wanted it to happen, I wanted to work at it, let it happen, surrender to it.  So I began to pray beforehand “Please keep me safe and if I see ghosts, or demons, or whatever happens, I accept it and I ask you that you protect me and help me not to be scared.”   I began to accept that I may see scary stuff, and in a way I welcomed it in and tried to tell myself that it was ok.

I had some very lucid dreams with ghosts in them.  They seemed very real.  I would wake up in the dream and think I was really awake, but I was not.  I would have multiple wake ups within the dreams. 

At this point I first began to consciously move during the frozen part of the dream.  Let me explain this frozen state.  The experts claim that when you have night terrors your body is in the frozen state and you cannot move.  They claim you are awake and asleep at the same time, yet frozen.  You may try to move or scream and cannot do either.  You will try to wake yourself up but you cannot do that either because the melatonin (or whatever sleep drug it is in your brain), holds you in sleep and wont let you wake.  In a sense, night terrors are a lucid dream because you know you are dreaming and you try to wake up.

At this same time, I began to enter this same exact night terror realm in meditation.  OH BOY!  And I thought I was scared before.  I would enter this state and see things.  One of the first thing I saw was an air elemental being.  I saw it in my minds eye, with my eyes shut, like a dream but I was fully awake.  I saw it as if I had my eyes open and I saw it directly in front of me and going into my lungs.  I then saw the whole room filled with them.

That was when I realized this same state – night terrors- is related to meditation.  The experts say that when you meditate, you go down lower than the dreaming state, yet you are still awake.  There is a state called Yoga Nidra where you are far deeper than sleep, yet fully awake and you can hear everything that goes in room you are in.  I’ve been in this state sometimes all night – thinking that I had not slept at all.  It is so easy to be fooled in dream land or in meditation land.

I was reading a site called  "The Wanderling" and he talks about the enlightenment of Buddha.  When Buddha was getting close to being enlightened (so the story goes) he was tempted by Mara, who is like a demon.  This Mara tried to scare him into quitting.  Some experts say these demons are from your own mind, not “real” at all.  Whatever it is, real or not, it woke me up.  I know enough now and with the help of The Wanderling site I finally put it all together.

I was having very real experiences since I was a small child.  The man sitting Indian style under my bed was a warning of this.  Don’t trust the dream state… was the basic message.

When I finally had a real experience and I could completely compare it to the dream experiences, it was so easy to tell them apart!  Yet for years I was so lost that I did not know, so I stopped whatever practice I was doing solely out of fear of the unknown, or fear that I was opening myself up to evil.  Ha, ha!  Mara had WON and I let her.

When I had a real experience, I was completely lucid and awake.  I could feel my body in the bed.  I could also see my dream state – sometimes I was actually dreaming at the same time or having a psychic vision – like seeing the air elemental.  And I was completely aware of both states, of doing these 2 things at once and I could move.  I had been so scared of this night terror stuff for so long that I learned to move my body inside it!  The experts say you can’t move, but somehow I learned to. 

And when the meditation I was doing gave fruit the first time, I was in 3 places at one time.  I was asleep having something like a lucid dream, I was fully awake and could feel my body in the bed, and I was feeling a new body – an astral body above my own body.  I entered that body and I could still feel my own body while I was in that body.

This night terror place, state of mind, whatever you call it is the doorway.  It is scary!  I won’t say that it isn’t.  But once I realized it was the doorway, I ventured in willingly, still scared, but willingly.   And when the bad dreams come or the scary stuff and it “seems” like I'm lucid I really know that I am not.  I've been fooled enough now to know better. 

For years, I had been dreaming that I was having a lucid dream when in fact, I was not.  It really felt real.  I would even dream that I woke up from this scary dream – like the *time* (story was above) I had a nightmare, woke up, got out of bed, turned the hall light on, walked down the hall, and went to my parents room to sleep on the floor. Yet I woke up in my own bed the next morning.  The waking from the nightmare, the trip down the hallway, and falling asleep on my parents floor – all this was a dream!  I had not turned on the hall light, because I never got out of my own bed!  Yet I can vividly recall it, still to this very day, as if it were real and actually happened.

It is so easy to believe that these dreams where you dream you are awake are real.  And it is equally as easy to believe the dreams that you are lucid dreaming are real.  Even the parts where you try to wake yourself up – are still just part of the dream; you are not really trying to wake up you are dreaming that you are trying to wake up.

I meditated last night and it was fruitful.  I began to have this flutter feeling above my stomach which means that I will have an experience soon.  The last time this happened, all my chakras turned on and I had a mini-enlightenment called a kensho.  The kensho was immense and wonderful;  the best thing that ever happened to me from spiritual practice.  It completely and utterly changed my life.  That was the day I really knew without a doubt, that this stuff was real.  I stopped believing or having faith, because I knew.

Anyway, I was meditating last night and I felt the flutter begin.  Then I fell asleep.  I went into a lucid dream where I began to leave my body.  I began to leave my body and return to it multiple times.  I was scared to death. I forced myself awake and looked around the room (only I was still asleep and dreaming that I was awake).  My husband came to bed then and I grabbed his hand and began to tell him about this horrible experience.  Only, it wasn’t him.  It looked like him.  He began to do strange things to me that my real husband would not do, and I knew… I was still dreaming. 

I forced myself awake (for real this time) finally and I listened to the room a bit.  My husband was getting ready for bed.  That was probably why I dreamed he was coming to bed – I always come out of meditation or dreams when he comes to bed.  I got out of bed, and turned to look at the bed to make sure I was awake.  (I did not see my sleeping body in the bed.)

This night terror, lucid dream state mirrors my spiritual practice, but it appears to turn my spiritual practice scary, evil, and trashy.  It is Mara, trying to turn me away, because I am close...  The experts claim the further up the spiritual path you get the more you open yourself up to the scary side trying to stop you.  I always kind of hated them for saying this and tried to pretend it was not true.  I really was and still am a big chicken and I don’t want to be scared or have ghosts, demons, etc., visiting me.  Even if it is simply "crap from my own mind",  I'd still rather not go there.

This is the yin yang, the balance.  It has to be this way.  All the scary stuff, all the bad stuff, all the trashy stuff from my whole life – has a reason.  With every praise comes a slap, and I can see now that this is true.  The experts also say that the most advanced spiritual people have had the worst lives.  This stuff doesn’t happen to goody-two-shoes types who have had an easy life.  This is the balance.  With the bad, comes the good.  With the good, comes the bad. 

Most of the things I was scared of in the past, as I came to understand later, these things were advanced spiritual occurrences.  For instance, the feelings I had as a small child that someone was touching me as I fell asleep; this was Kundalini and my Psychic side turning on.  But I was so scared by it that I stopped it from happening!  I forced it back down out of pure fear.

The bad, the scary, the evil… is merely a road sign along the spiritual path.  It says, you have arrived somewhere.  It never says turn back, stop, or U-turn.  It may seem like it does, but don’t be fooled.  Hold onto your heart, your good intent, and forge ahead into the unknown.  Be scared if you have to be, but don’t let it stop you.

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