It's Only a Dream, Right?

Informant: Male/19/Portuguese, Filipino ancestry
Location: Hilo, Hawaii

I've had many weird dreams before, but this dream is by far the weirdest I've ever had in my life. In my dream I'm in the middle of an ocean, drowning. There's is no land or boat in sight. I am completely surrounded by water. I'm thrashing about wildly and quickly sinking into the ocean. My head is beginning to submerge and I am starting to choke on the water.

Now this is the part that things begin to get weird. As soon as I begin to swallow water in my dream, I wake up (actually wake up, this is no longer a dream) and I'm choking on some kind of liquid. I roll off of my bed and begin puking out water. It seems that I was choking on water.

In an article about lucid dreams for WIRED magazine, Dr. Stephen Laberge, a founder of the Lucidity Institute at Stanford University states about lucid dreams :

"the brain is working full-tilt, yet it is disconnected from the outside world. If you dream of doing a long jump, your brain reacts the same way it would if you actually did it."

Is it possible that my brain thought I was actually drowning? My brain believed that I was drowning, so much in fact that it caused me to actually expel water? And if I can almost drown because of a dream, could a dream kill me?

Everyone has heard of the myth that if you dream you are falling and you actually hit the bottom, you will actually die. Is there any truth to that? So far there has been no official documented cases of people dying from their dreams. It seems that it is only a myth.

For the full article on Lucid Dreaming, Click Here.