Author Topic: Leitmotif Conditioning  (Read 1654 times)

Offline Estelore

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Leitmotif Conditioning
« on: September 20, 2012, 10:00:54 PM »
What this method is not:
This is not a method to use actual music playback devices during your sleep, as external LD stimuli.
This is not, at the time of this writing, a confirmed method, but it has been useful as a memory aid in waking academia.

What this method is:
This is a method to use your own ability to mentally recall and reproduce the tune or lyrics of a song as part of your Reality Checking process, intending to cause any or all of the following:
- Induction of lucidity upon encountering dream signs and events which relate to the lyrics
- Induction of lucidity upon hearing, in-dream (and NOT from any external stimulus!) a specific musical tune or riff which you have conditioned yourself to remember during RCs
- Heightened focus and recall of specific memories which you may or may not condition to be 'assigned' to a given tune or set of lyrics
- Increased instances of remembering to RC

The Method

1. Select a song which fits all of the following criteria:
- It is pleasing to your ear, and not annoying; you enjoy hearing it more than once consecutively.
- It has lyrics which are complex, unrepetitive, and easy to remember. Repetition is not bad, but it limits the ways dream signs and events can manifest according to the lyrics.
- It has a tune containing at least one riff or motif which is easy to remember, easy to hum, and which can be readily looped back on itself and repeated indefinitely.
- It is accessible to you in a portable form, such as an MP3 player.
- It is at least somewhat mild or soothing in such a way that listening to it does not cause you to feel anxious or upset at all. Specifically, it must not be startling. Any increase in tempo or volume ought to be gradual instead of sudden.
- It is at least somewhat energetic in such a way that listening to it compels you to be mentally attentive and wakeful. Specifically, it must not be sleepy or boring to you. If it is slow, then the tune needs to be complex enough to maintain your attention.

Good examples we have used personally as memory aids:
-Penny Lane by the Beatles
-The Final Countdown by Europe
-Hotel California by The Eagles
-The Pokemon anime theme song from season 1
- All Along the Watchtower by Bob Dylan (any cover also works; we use as our leitmotif the Bear McCreary instrumental cover titled "Kara Remembers," from the Battlestar Galactica soundtrack)

2. Listen to the song using an actual external device, while you are awake. Familiarize yourself with the song until you can easily hum it. Memorize the lyrics in their entirety.

3. Focus on the parts of the song you want to use most directly by picking out lyric phrases and motifs in the tune which you can loop easily and which you would like to appear as dream symbols and events in an LD.

4. Practice reproducing the song JUST IN YOUR HEAD. Play it back several times without actually hearing it with your ears. This should be a 100% mental activity, with no external device(s) being used. Do this at least three times daily until you are certain you have total recall of the 'focal' parts of your selected song - the earworm lyrics and the looping riff or motif.

5. Connect the motif to your Reality Checking practice. Every time you remember to RC, play back the looping section of tune once or twice. It is okay to hum it, but make sure you also produce it totally-mentally, without actual sound, at least once during your RC.

6. Listen to the song again when you are on your way to work or classes, using your external player. Listen to it once before bed, and then play it back in your head without the device, also before going to bed, and while RCing.

7. ? ? ? ? Once the earworm lyrics and the tune of your chosen looping motif are firmly integrated into your daily mental activities, events in your dreams should start to reflect parts of the lyrics. You may or may not hear the tune itself in your dreams. If the tune occurs, or if an event or sign occurs that relates to the lyrics, ideally it will prompt you to RC, or else it will directly prompt an LD.

8. PROFIT. If you find that this method is working consistently for you, then you can begin adding layers of complexity to your conditioning, such as connecting other thoughts, events, signs, and memories to your selected song, by focusing on thoughts of those things while you are awake, during RCs and 'mental recitations' of the motif and lyrics.



Due to the Pavlovian conditioning nature of this method, and due to the fact that we who are using it are on a biphasic sleep schedule (for health reasons which predate any interest we've had in LDs), we link here to two relevant threads which may or may not improve upon the methods we describe here.
Pavlovian Conditioning technique
Biphasic Sleep technique


Leitmotif: a musical motif, riff, or tune which introduces or highlights a particular event, element, or individual in a drama

Earworm: a tune, rhyme, or phrase which is easily memorized, easily loops back on itself, and is difficult to banish from the mind once it is learnt

Pavlovian Conditioning: the act of pairing a conditioned stimulus or event with an unconditioned event which generates a previously-unconditioned response, until the conditioned stimulus generates the same response without the introduction of another event (eg. If you want an dog to bark on command, and he barks when doors are knocked, then you say the command, knock the door, and reward him when he barks. Later, you remove the door knocking and only say the command; he barks on command without the stimulus of the knocked door.)



Explaining our system, our beliefs, and our tastes in music and reading materials, we offer these links.
Our preferred pronouns are you / yourselves / they / themselves.

Offline Sunshine

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Re: Leitmotif Conditioning
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2012, 10:57:15 PM »
(content removed by user request)
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 07:04:01 PM by pj »

Offline Serenity

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Re: Leitmotif Conditioning
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2012, 11:06:11 PM »
I've experienced something similar to this. I used to use a lucid app that played a distinct sound effect when the RC timer went off (set at random intervals). I used to let this app run all day long when I was at work. So I got to hear it a lot.

Twice, I heard it randomly, in my dreams. I recall one dream, specifically, where I was certain I was awake, but that's my RC sound, so I decided to be a good little dreamer and checked - imagine my surprise!

I've been feeling kind of slack lately... unable to really commit to getting lucid... But I am going to play around with this method. Thanks for posting, Este! ;-D
What would you do if you were dreaming right now?