IASD Documents Index




PAPER ABSTRACTS Presented at the ASD Conference in Santa Cruz July 6-10, 1999


A Lucid Mutual Dream Protocol

E. W. Kellogg III (presenter), Linda Lane Magallón, and Robert G. Waggoner ©1999

(The authors hereby give the Association for the Study of Dreams the right to post this material on their website. Individuals accessing this material have permission to copy it for their own personal use).

The authors have developed a data-gathering protocol that allows rigorous investigation into the possibility and phenomenology of intentional, consensual, "lucid mutual dreaming", in studies using proficient lucid dreamers. In this case, ‘proficient’, indicates those who can successfully incubate lucid dreams (in which they know that they dream while they dream), and who can also remember and carry out pre-assigned tasks while dreaming. For the purposes of this protocol, a "lucid mutual dream" in a minimal sense denotes an event in which two or more lucid dreamers (who know that they dream while they dream) intentionally choose to meet each other in dreamscapes (perceived dream environments) that may share some similarities. A 'full-fledged' lucid mutual dream event would also include many other details, indicative of a consensual meeting analogous to one occurring in the physical world. This paper will present a brief overview of some of the more salient features of this Lucid Mutual Dream Protocol (LMDP).

Although accounts of mutual dreaming exist (1, 2), they remain open to question because of the many uncontrolled variables inherent to anecdotal reports of this kind. Validated cases of mutual dreaming would have significant implications not only to the nature of the dreaming and of human consciousness, but to that of our understanding of ‘reality’ as well. This protocol (3) specifically aims at eliminating or minimizing sources of possible data contamination in the ways in which participants record and share their experiences, and of maximizing the potential evidential value of generated dream reports, by designating a series of tasks subject to statistical analysis for lucid dreamers to perform when having possible mutual dreams.

Participants and Responsibilities

The Fair Witness (FW): A third party monitor who primarily acts as a clearing house for dream reports, validating their time of arrival and the sequence of events. The Fair Witness does not participate in the study as a Dreamer Participant and need not have any lucid dreaming skills.

Dreamer Participants (DPs): A pool of proficient lucid dreamers who have agreed to follow the LMDP for the duration of the study, in respect to dream reporting, communication procedures in the waking world, and contact and verification procedures during possible mutual dreams.


Communications and Dream Sharing: Study periods may vary in length, but a typical study would last for 4 weeks, with lucid mutual dream target dates designated for the end of the first and third weeks. Except in an emergency (like a computer breakdown) participants will communicate only through e-mail, especially on and around target dates. Dreamer Participants will send dream reports initially to the Fair Witness only. After all reports for a given target date have arrived, the FW then compiles the dreams into a primary dream data file for the night in question, and then sends this material out simultaneously to all of the DPs involved, without making any comment on possible correspondences. All other e-mail communications will go to all participating parties, including the FW. This will allow the archiving of a complete record of all communications between participants over each study period by the FW.

Dream Recording: Dreamer Participants agree to keep a reasonably detailed dream diary of all of their dreams during a mutual lucid dream study, and a more detailed version for the nights of specific target dates when they agree to incubate lucidity. Dreams will include dates, and times (estimated if necessary) using the following form of notation to avoid confusion: Initials of dreamer (e.g.: EWK) 7/1/1998-7/2/1998 3:30 AM PDT. Degree of Lucidity: _____ Word: Dog, Gesture/Action: Spinning. When reporting dreams, especially on target nights, DPs will also include a reasonably detailed appendix describing possible sources of ‘day residue’ (impressions from waking life activities and events), that they feel might have influenced their dreams.

Lucid Mutual Dream Tasks:

Procedures that Dreamer Participants agree to follow when lucid in potential mutual dreams when possible:

  1. They will take careful note of the dream environment, and of the appearance of possible fellow dream participants, and of themselves, paying particular attention to structural details.
  2. They will make a dramatic gesture or action, randomly selected (before retiring) from a list of ten, when they encounter another potential mutual dreamer. The gesture list describes a set of easy to do, easy to recognize from a distance, and easy to differentiate from each other in both form and movement gestures/actions. On the following morning, in the case of a possible lucid mutual dream, DPs will select the top 3 gestures/actions, rated from 1 to 3, from most to least likely, that they judge best corresponds to gestures/actions made in the dreamed event.
  3. Exchange code words with other potential mutual dreamers while dreaming. Before retiring each dreamer would
  4. randomly choose a word from a 100 word list, in which each word distinctly differs from the others in both pronunciation and meaning. On the following morning, in the case of a possible lucid mutual dream, DPs will select the top 5 words, rated from 1 to 5, from most to least likely, that they judge best corresponds to the dreamed event. They will make this choice primarily based on the sounds, or meanings of, communications made by possible co-dreamers, or secondarily upon a dream action or event that suggests a particular word. Later on, independent judges may also perform these tasks.



This brief overview describes only a few of the more important features of the actual LMDP. Results in a number of pilot studies, have proved the practical workability of the LMDP, even under conditions where the adversarial workings of Murphy’s law became strongly evident. Preliminary reports so far seem to show strong evidence of telepathic overlay between DPs, similar in some ways to that seen in the studies of Ullman et al (4). Other results support a more consensual model, indicative of direct dreamer to dreamer interactions under certain conditions. However, at this point the small amount of data available from preliminary studies using the LMDP can only indicate possibilities that future research may eventually confirm or deny.

Note: In refining this protocol we sent an earlier draft out to a number of experienced dreamworkers. Their critical comments and suggestions helped us in substantially strengthening the protocol in a number of ways. We would like to take this opportunity to thank them all for their efforts in our behalf.


1. Kellogg III, E. W. (1997) "A Mutual Lucid Dream Event", Dream Time, 14(2), 32-34, .

2. Magallón, L. L, (1997) Mutual Dreaming: When Two or More people Share the Same Dream, New York, Simon and Schuster, Inc.

3. Kellogg III, E. W., Magallón, L. L., and Waggoner, "A Lucid Mutual Dream Protocol", Copies available on request from the authors, © 1998.

4.Ullman, M., Krippner, S. with Vaughan, A., (1973) Dream Telepathy: Experiments in Nocturnal ESP, Macmillian Publishing Co. , Inc., New York.


If you would like to participate in a lucid mutual dream study, or would like to begin one yourself and would like us to send you a copy of the complete Lucid Mutual Dream Protocol please contact:

E. W. Kellogg III, Ph.D.

E-Mail: alef1@email.msn.com

Please also see: Lucid Dream Healing Experiences: Firsthand Accounts
and A Mutual Lucid Dream Event

E. W. Kellogg III, Ph.D. ©1998