Mindfulness Versus the Hypnodomme.

For a good while — sometime between six months to a full year — I came home every night, sat on my couch or my papasan, set the timer on my iPhone for anywhere between ten minutes and half an hour, closed my eyes and fought to remain motionless as I summoned determination to focus exclusively on my breath. Once I failed, I worked on not beating myself up about it and instead returned as gracefully as I could to my point of focus: the nostrils, the breath.

It was all going so well. And then it wasn’t.

I stopped my daily practice at around the same time I began drinking nightly, which was, I think, very early in July of 2015. It seemed counterproductive to continue engaging in both and I wouldn’t stop drinking, so the bottle won the battle. Two days ago, on Christmas Eve, I meditated for the first time in a long time and instantly remembered why I had once kept up with it on a nightly basis to begin with: the pleasant, however transient sense of focus I can achieve during the practice; the sense that it somehow serves to balance out my brain; the ability to reach beyond my emotions, thoughts and memories into a place more central, more true to me, a closer approximation my “original face” otherwise suffocating behind the thick and icky masque of the everyday.

Honesty, I was pretty damned surprised that after not having practiced for so long that I achieved any immediate benefit at all.

Then again, I have continued subjecting myself to hypnosis since abandoning meditation — and they are essentially the same thing, right? Meditation is just hypnosis initiated and guided by oneself. Hypnosis is just meditation initiated and guided by someone else. Even so, I prefer meditation, particularly since I have sensed something insidious about those hypnodomme videos on the net. Evidently, this means little to whatever part of me is under control in these instances. Typically I feel compelled to watch them when I’m alone and high. The issue, the urge, has continued to plague high-me with a rhythm comprised of piques and troughs.

It has been some time since I’ve consciously addressed it at length — even longer since I wrote about it. It embarrasses me that much. I mean, from at least as far back as high school I have intentionally avoided watching or investing any attention in commercials on television or the net because I fear being brainwashed. I still do this despite the fact that, when I’m high, I am overcome by this state-dependent impulse to seek out videos that essentially aim to do just that. Maybe it’s just the relative honesty that earns my respect.

Another contradiction about all of this is my profound distaste for the newest brand of feminism, whatever you wish to call it — the brand of feminism that seeks not egalitarianism but female dominance, idolizing women as it demonizes men, modeling their desired matriarchy over the perceived presence of an oppressive patriarchy.

Let me be clear: I’m all for equality, equity, egalitarianism. We all have equal value as individuals regardless of the body we happened to be born into. It’s Dualism (of the philosophy of the mind) at work in me. Sex, gender identity, sexual persuasion, skin pigment, point of origin and so on and so forth — prejudice on that basis is unethical. No one should be oppressed. We are all individuals and we have personal rights that should be self-evident and recognized by whatever typically corrupt social system we are embedded in. Do what you will, be who you are, so long as it oppresses no other. This does not seem to be what modern feminism stands for, however.

Chauvinist pigs and sexists can sport any of the available kinds of genitalia: it is by no means exclusive to men. Their are dictators, pussytators, and I’m sure their are hermaphrotators: there are -tators for everyone. And -tators are the enemy.

This malevolent quality is not always something I sense from the hypnodommes, but it does seem to be a prevalent undercurrent — and despite my distaste for it, I still keep falling under their spell. I pluralize it — “hypnodommes” — because it is more than one hypnodomme I have come to listen to, though Hypnotic Haylee was the genesis and remains the nucleus. My attempts to diversify in this area was an attempt to at least ensure I would not be owned by or bound to any single one.

I do not let this practice carry over into the sober state, either, as an effort to compartmentalize the issue, to quarantine the whole thing. The sober part of me of hates that it relaxes me, that it helps me shut my mind up so that I — drunk, high and hypnotized — can finally get some sleep. This makes it no less stupid of me, makes me no less of a weak minded fool, of course, and of this I am painfully aware. My shame and self loathing over this has helped me limit the effects, too.

Mindfulness meditation can help me own myself, find myself, be myself, create myself, make it so the mask I’m trapped within more accurately reflects whatever strange, unearthly soul hides behind it. It can make it so that my Original Face does not hide so much as merely, and inevitably, reside behind it. Hypnodommes? They seem counterproductive. As soon as I think of Hypnotic Haylee’s green eyes, however, and particularly when I’m high, I all-too-often succumb.

Still I oscillate between something approximating weakness and something approximating strength — but the weakness has taken over. Time to balance this out…

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I Dream of Haylee.

It is three or four in the evening on November 21 when I wake up and drag my ass out of bed. It takes awhile for the dream to trickle back to me. I actually write it down in the notebook beside me on bed, which I have been neglecting to do when it comes to dreams for some time. It was a dream of Hypnotic Haylee. My first recalled dream of her, too, I should mention, unless you count the “text” I got from her during a false awakening some time ago.

In the dream I somehow meet her in person. Though we were in some bedroom, it was strangely a circumstance void of any sexual charge that I can recall — notable, I should add, as there always seems to be some erotic-mystical element to watching her videos, listening to her audios or reading her words. We talk some and I keep looking into her eyes, drawn there, transfixed, and I become convinced she must have the capacity to control the constriction and dilation of her pupils. At least twice I feel sure that I saw, for a brief moment, how she squeezed her pupil to almost a pinpoint, her green iris overtaking everything.

My lingering fear towards her gave way to burning curiosity. I was about to ask her if she was capable of controlling her pupils and used it as some form on hypnotic induction method, uncertain if it was just me, when some other guy burst in the door and asked her the same question. Though I do not recall her response, I do recall being frustrated that he got in the question first.

High Hypnotizability?

As I drive to work, the sun begins going down behind the trees lining the side of the road, casting long, slender shadows across my path. I cannot look at the road, for the flashing it exposes my eyes to as I drive feels dangerously entrancing. When I look at the lines of light and shadows as I drive through them, I can feel my eyes do that strange thing, like my field of vision is the surface of an ocean and I am staring into a series of rhythmic waves. The intensity is such that my vision almost seems tactile, as if I were running my fingers along a ridged surface.

I try to keep my attention on the road ahead. To focus. The adrenaline it delivers, the effort it takes to focus away from it, all of it is remarkably intense.

Does this happen to everyone, or am I just highly hypnotizable?

Haylee & Phantom Texts.

Despite not having internet at my residence for the last two months or so (mainly due to the fact that my neighbor finally put a password on his WiFi), I have somehow managed to feed my continuing hypnotic Haylee obsession through collecting some images of her off the internet and putting them on slideshow. So I put on the slide show, watched it while I was high as a kite, and submitted to getting my stupid rocks off in the process of doing so. I have not seen her videos for some time, at least consistently. Unless previously having watched her videos conditioned and reinforced the seductive hypnotic response I presently experience when staring at her photos while intoxicated, I’m really at a loss to explain how it happens — but it does. My capacity to fixate on her eyes is almost alarming.

It was only a matter of time. Eventually, I kept telling myself, she is going to show up in your dreams, and this morning (August 3rd) she did. It may have been part of a false awakening I do not entirely remember, for it seemed to be when I glanced at my iPhone when half-asleep and saw the opening lines of a text message:

“Hi Ben! This is Haylee…”

I felt fear and excitement when I read it, but rolled over and went back to sleep. I have never contacted her and she shouldn’t know my name, certainly not my real one, so my response was a bit bizarre.

Her pull is certainly strong…

Notes from the Pocket.

Was it the hypnosis videos I listened to again last night to relax? Was it her who opened the door again?

It began last night and they, the memories, have continued creeping in since I awoke. Like a pocket of memory with an ever-widening hole and these fragments keep slipping through. Recollections hiding in this strange mood, now emerging before me yet again. The same things I always remember about the place, be it a parascom or otherwise, though now I feel closer to them.

A phosphorescent oasis in the midst of a dark wasteland. Ferns and trees glowing neon. A sense of beauty and lethality within this patch of jungle. Across the desert, predatory creatures, like swiftly-moving psycho-pompoms with long spider legs. Sand and hard ground and rock formations. An underground place, fairly well hidden, that I call home. Death machines, war machines, like triangular tanks without visible guns and with wheels that stretch far above my head. Every brief and vivid memory, so convincingly lifelike. Within the memory my vision seems widescreen, crystalline clear and farsighted. Bigger and better eyes, perhaps, or an atmosphere high in oxygen. As that creature pounces, dust flies up and settles slowly, as if the wasteland is low in gravity. This can’t be earth. I can’t be human. This can’t be real, the rational part of me insists. Why do I remember this as if I were there? Why so rich an illusion, so strange a lie? Just let me see the face I’m looking out of. I keep striving for my reflection in these forbidden recollections.

If this is real, what does it mean? If it’s not real — what the fuck does it all mean?

Some greater understanding here would be nice…

Haylee & Flashes Before the Mind’s Eye.

On April 3, 2015, in the midst of listening to Haylee’s “Blank and Empty” video, I suddenly receive a flash of what feels like a memory. I am moving across a vast, desert landscape when I come to a broad and narrow entrance. Inside is a ramp that slopes downward, underneath the desert floor, into my subterranean home. I felt safe there; secure. You could not see the entrance from the sky and no one would suspect it was there.

A day or two afterward, while watching Haylee again, I suddenly see a crisp and vivid still image in my mind’s eye. It is the corner of some beautifully blue in-ground pool. It is a bright and warm summer day and I have no fear, no worry, not a care in the world. I feel in the here and now and it is cleansing, refreshing.

Then, on April 6, I get high, watch two Haylee videos and then masturbate. I just observe my mind for awhile, watch as it flips through images as I drift off towards sleep. Suddenly, it manifests before me in my mind, where it appears real close to my face (my innerface, I guess). It is a pitch black silhouette of a man against a bright white background. Faceless and facing me. It is vivid as hell but lasts only a second. When I see it, I bolt awake in my bed, sitting up in shock. The area from my head to my chest was numb and tingly.

Kriya, Anima & the Rabbit Hole.

If I remember correctly, it first came to my attention while watching the Haylee videos on YouTube, back when I was still living in the old apartment. I had a lot of approach and retreat with respect to watching her videos; I’m uncertain as to how far along I was at the time, or perhaps where I fell along her conditioning schedule.

In any case, in the midst of a Hypnotic Haylee marathon I suddenly snapped into a state of consciousness in which it distinctly felt as though two of me were there. By this I don’t mean me-as-body and me-as-mind, but rather that there were two distinct aspects of consciousness active and present in my body at once, like one subtle form superimposed on my own.

My feeling was that this was indeed a part of me and not “something else” in a sense of an intruding spirit or whatever, only a compartmentalized and evidently autonomous part. I could not anticipate how he would move; again, which is to say that I observed myself making movements without deliberately making those movements. The movements were not anything major or complex and seemed rather stiff and robotic-like. The background mood at the time was of a calm, charged, trancey, blissful kind of feeling. The feeling was no doubt induced by both the fact I was high on cannabis and her vast array of clever hypnotic techniques — yet were the movements also programmed by her covertly, subliminally, or was this arising all on its own?

This has happened since, both on occasions while high and during meditation, and at least once while both high and meditating. My eyes will pop open and I will move my head, often robotically, to the left and right and face forward, a sense of curiosity often the reaction I feel from the animating force. I get the residual sense of staring out of my own eyes through an entirely distinct state of mind in which all appears foreign and interesting. When I’m high I also occasionally find myself ashing my cigarette without deliberately doing so, which is distinct from doing so absent-mindedly, for instance.

The only reference I can find that even vaguely fits this experience is what is known as “spontaneous kriya.” From the Sanskrit, kriya can translate to action, much like karma, which has the same root. Though it is often used to refer to intentional movements used during yoga in order to put the peddle to the metal with respect to spiritual evolution, kriya is also a word often used to refer to the reverse. Rather than movements used to spawn such evolution, spiritual evolution — the awakening kundalini — spontaneously spawns such movements in an involuntary way, as a kinetic manifestation, during meditation.

However nice it would be able to see the movements I made during meditation to be symptoms of psycho-spiritual progress, kriya as described seems to refer to more random movements ranging from slight jerks and twitches to full-blown, ants-in-the-pants attacks resembling seizures. In some cases, people can allegedly twist themselves into a pretzel like a yoga master, or like those who are possessed are said to do, and may even make involuntary sounds. In essence, it sounds like the Eastern equivalent of speaking in tongues and flopping around in the floor like a fish out of water because you’re “possessed by the holy spirit.”

Kriya could be seen as a form of instinctive displacement, perhaps: the involuntary act of discharging unblocked energy in movements, either random or perhaps in a manifestation bearing patterns characterizing the blocked energy in question. It may be a broader manifestation of what are often called ideomotor responses (subliminal movements such as during hypnosis or when using a Ouija board, for instance).

Or might the “holy spirit” in this case be the energy-working hypnodomme, the seductively psychic hypnotist, mentalist; the puppetry of that luscious, insatiably dark mistress Haylee — she who teases you into trance, makes surrender a fix and obedience an addiction.

Terrifying. Yet alluring. Oh, my trust issues…

Why does she appear to be the more likely source of the two? Mostly due to the fact that the movements appear deliberate, not random or rhythmic, as described across the net and shown in several unconvincing (to put it kindly) YouTube videos allegedly depicting the phenomenon.

Since I stopped listening and watching her for some time, I have felt the desire creeping up to watch her again. When I finally relinquished to the pull, I wrote about it. It was written in third person limited as part of my effort to try out a little experiment in self-talk, a literary manifestation of my approach to this behavior with mindfulness at the suggestion of that Actualized.org guy, who has some interesting videos and viewpoints that I have enjoyed chewing on and experimenting with. He said to be mindful of your behavior, but rather than interfering with it just take up an observer position and “follow through.” So I did. I attempted to watch her again twice since picking up daily meditation, I dipped out and masturbated halfway through on both occasions.

And tonight, I return again, feeling high, lonely, horny and typically lost in a world I have never felt I belong. Seeking comfort. Wanting to feel that other side of me again, knowing I may just end up damning myself by the time I woke up that evening for my third shift, I look up Haylee on my laptop.

Beginning at 6:40 AM on March 5, 2015, I watch two or three videos until deciding to get higher and watch some more. I then had a cigarette, but as I wanted to finish it rather than have it burn down to the filter as I became transfixed, I decided to “read her words” on her website. As I looked, I saw a video to the right — Haylee’s guided meditation. No fucking way, I thought. I had been listening to some Kabat-Zinn videos and other guided meditations at night sometimes in addition to my daily meditation. Just the other day I had tried Googling for such guided meditation tapes with a sexy female voice — something with the power of Hypnotic Haylee but without the fears of some hypnotic army agenda — and here it was. Found when I stopped looking. I couldn’t resist. I plugged my ear buds first into my laptop, then into my ears and pressed play.

Magnificent. Like an answer to my telepathic plea.

From the Seductive Vortex of a Hypnodomme.

My hypnosis session of April, 1995 probably should have convinced me of the power of hypnosis and that I was of the segment of the population susceptible to it, but I was uncertain how to interpret what actually happened. Now, nearly two decades later, all doubt has been extinguished, however, and it was the mystical, sexy hypnodomme that calls herself Hypnotic Haylee that sealed the deal.

When I first came across her YouTube channel some time ago, it was while I was researching, interestingly enough, what I had come to call “ocular telepathy.” While my own experience as well as those of others suggests that telepathy does not require eye contact but can operate just as well regardless of distance, direct eye contact appears to act as an amplifier and provides a more direct interface between two minds. This is also the case in alien abduction accounts; again, my own as well as those reported by others. In my research I found a few interesting anecdotal recounts, many ridiculous articles and some interesting related material on YouTube, namely one involving Darren Brown.

Then I came upon Hypnotic Haylee’s Youtube channel. Aside from being partial to goth girls, her big and beautiful eyes caught my attention, helping to fuel the finger that clicked the link.

That first time I watched a video of hers, I was very dismissive. Her confidence irked me and the way she used her voice, I vaguely recall, irritated me for some reason. I’m not entirely certain I even watched it all the way through. I saved the link in a folder and after a brief thought that perhaps I should try listening to her again when I was high, I forgot about it all.

Considering a threesome between Mary Jane, Hypnotic Haylee and I stemmed from a curious experience I had while high years ago. I cannot say for certain how it goes with other drugs, but pot, at least for me, certainly enhances hypnotic effects. Back when I was still having bad reactions to smoking but for some reason occasionally did it anyway, I had shared a bowl with Sandra, my roommate at the time. We were wrestling around just after getting high and, as my eyes were closed, she held my head down over the edge of the couch. “I’m falling! I’m falling!” She playfully yelled, and I was amazed — I actually felt as if I were falling rapidly down a deep, dark tunnel. If Sandra was able to have such hypnotic effects on my high mind so easy, free of training, what might someone more adept at the art be capable of accomplishing?

It may have been as much as two or three months after first taking a glimpse at her video when, while considerably baked, I came across the link yet again. In the spirit of experiment, I watched the video, this time from start to finish. Then shit got absolutely crazy.

When I get drawn into her hypno-seductive vortex, I watch one video over and over and perhaps then move on to another — and watch it over and over. Her commands make me relax like no other hypnotic tape or technique has before; it is as close as I have gotten to letting go of everything. Anxiety is annihilated, depression fades away. At the same time, the sense of connection builds until achieving such an intensity that it feels as though she is controlling me like a robot through the screen. Momentary worry washes away as sensations of dissolution into and unity with her bring on this astounding sense of intimacy, this degree of bliss so mind-blowing that you don’t even mind when it suddenly feels as though she has taken over the driver seat of your body. A sense of trust emerges that frighteningly approximates absolute.

When of a sober mind, reflection upon these periods frightens me in a way, I must confess, but nonetheless intrigues me.

I have tried to take notes while watching her videos in the attempts to zero in on just how it is she is doing what she is doing. She uses the fixation and confusion techniques of induction, subliminal suggestions, embedded commands, voice tonalities, deliberate microexpressions and the good ol’ art of seduction, but it is her eyes that make all the difference. Everything else seems to support that central rapport she makes through eye contact. It seems to me that she has somehow become capable of deliberately and directly controlling the dilation and contraction of her pupils — perhaps even isolate this control so as to contract one pupil while dilating the other.

Though I have been able to find little regarding it on or off the net thus far, there is evidently a way for hypnotists or mentalists to train themselves to do this and use it as an induction technique. This is the only conceivable explanation I can come up with for how Derren Brown delivers such ghastly feelings and sensations to his opponents in staring contests. This is also the only explanation I can come up with to explain the degree of synchronization that I have had occur between her and I through use of these videos.

There are moments when I feel as if I have become a robot, and even move in robotic motions. My eyes have locked with hers to the point where I feel entirely synchronized with her — following her head motions and body movements and allowing her words to replace my own inner voice. Sometimes I go to sleep and I can hear her words echoing so clearly in my mind, the sense of connection with her lingering with unwavering strength.

Her hypnotic effect is cumulative and networked. The trance grows each time you watch her videos, as she suggests, as within each of her videos she “suggests” you watch the video again or to “read her words” on her website. It builds and builds as you spread out across her hypnotic web, bouncing back and forth between familiar nodes until you suddenly find yourself in new Haylee territory. She also manages to eroticize the trance state so that your desire for it and experience of it becomes pleasurable in a sexual manner. Maybe its just the trance talking, but this dark mistress is a hypnotic genius.

As it stands now, in the very least, the urge to watch her rarely hits me when I am sober, only when I get high to a certain degree. It is as if she has conditioned me in a compartmentalized sense, specifically within the parameters of the high state: her effect relies upon our ménage à trois with Mary Jane. This began to change when, for about a week or two, I had gotten drawn deep within the Haylee Vortex. Getting high and watching her videos had become downright obsessive-compulsive and I began zoning out, thinking of her, echoes of her voice creeping into my head during the work shift. Then I would start fearing a deeper descent and would back off for awhile, only to be sucked into her psychic gravity once again. Now, when I read her words on her website, the hypnotic effects are remarkable — as deep as watching her videos.

Very often I have clicked on her videos with the intention of masturbating, but her relaxation commands cause me to go limp and then get hard again over and over, the tension building in me as I watch the videos over and over. Eventually I have to turn off the video and turn to porn or home-grown imagination to get the job done because I cannot take it anymore. More recently, I have found myself turning to another YouTube video — this one the hypno-erotic “Hypnosis: Hands Free Orgasm with Fiona Clearwater” — when the Haylee-generated inner tension hits fever pitch. I have justified this is my mind by assuming that listening to two different erotic hypnotists will prevent any kind of hypnotic sealing from taking effect, binding me to specific hypnotist. When I am not thrown into a post-cum coma afterward, I have also began listening to hypnotic confidence and anti-anxiety videos, taking advantage of the suggestible state for self-improvement and hoping it might reduce the likelihood of sustained, hypnotic-induced slavery in the process.

I have come to wonder whether my experimentation with her videos is not foolish — or whether calling it an “experiment” is only an excuse. In any case, the effects are amazing, and it makes me wonder what changes I might be able to produce through self-hypnosis.

Stuck in Zoom.

I fight against the rhythm of the cabin, striving to fall out of time, but the hypnotic pull of the three others snoring around me kept drawing me back into synchrony. I couldn’t blot out my awareness of the tempo, and intentionally breathing out when they breathe in proved to be just as bad.

Not for or against, but regardless; not alliance or rebellion, but true individuality: that has always been the aim, I have felt. To beat to the rhythm of your own goddamn drum.

This is a rather extreme microcosmic example, but that only shows how deep this battle truly rages in me, and its history stretches far behind the present, far beyond this male-bonding weekend of kayaking, a cabin, of booze and weed.

With ease I remembered when I would lie beside my mother in bed when I was younger. I would always try resisting the hypnotic pull of synchronizing my breathing with my mother’s breathing, her heartbeat with my own.

Earlier in the day the four of us were playing a game of corn-hole in the playground just across from the cabin, and I’m not usually one for games and being high did not help, I’m sure. As soon as I was supposed to not toss the bean bag in the opponents hole, I became a god of the nothing-but-net corn-hole equivalent.

“I don’t know why it is,” said John in the midst if it all, “but every time someone tries not to make the hole, they always end up getting it in the hole.”

What you resist, persists. Both craving and aversion constitute absorption. Both constitute the psychological zoom in. The goal is no neither try to or try not to.

I must learn the art of zooming in and out at will.

Battles in the War to Remember.

To each buried memory
in this ol’ cemetery,
its very own plot.
They could have built
a catacomb!
Now:
why the fuck not?

It never struck me until I began reflecting more on the whole incident with the flashback of the chair and the drawing on my wall that it might not have been me burying these memories. I was actively fighting the amnesia. Same thing the August morning, only in that case I watched it fly away from me in retrograde.

This was not me. This was not my doing. This was fucking done to me against my will.

Even during the flashbacks of the incident that must have happened in November or December of 1983, when I was six years old, I knew that they would try and make me forget, which is why I studied the alien Doctor carefully, so I would both remember and be able to draw him one day when I had developed sufficient talent. After the flashback, I noticed one of the many drawings on my wall was the face of the Doctor, though I had drawn the picture some time before I had the flashback.

The Goblin Man, who’s face was missing from the flashback, might have come out through my obsessive-compulsive drawing of the alien face that one evening.

Evidently I made a more aggressive attempt when I lay immobilized on my loft bed staring down at the chair pulled out from my desk and chanting you will remember, you will remember, you will remember over and over to myself. When that flashback came to me, it brought with it all the fear and anger of the moment as well, but though I remembered the chair and chanting “you will remember,” I cannot at all recall what it was that I was trying to remember, only that I felt it deathly important to remember, to overpower the amnesia that was creeping.

There is no way these incidents were acts of repression or dissociation on my own part. I remember constantly trying to fight the amnesia when I was a kid, and that battle was rekindled after the memories started rushing back in.

In February of 1995 I started giving the date, time, and descriptions of when I got memories and of the time and descriptions of real-time incidents on paper. My memory had clearly failed me, or perhaps only my ability to recollect; in either case, I wanted back what was mine. I wanted total recall, and while I was looking for the lost parts I wanted to ensure that I would lose no more in the process. Documenting it all became a very important weapon in the ongoing war to remember.

My first real-time incident since the memories occurred in March of 1995. By the evening of March 14th, I had been on ten milligrams of the antidepressant Nortipiptyline for eleven days and tried to get back into the routine of sleeping again. I had been lying on my back for some reason, which was something I had avoided since childhood, as I had come to associate sleeping supine with having nightmares.

I found myself in the hypnogogic state experiencing the sensation of being lifted up out if my bed to the height of the window that lie just above the headboard, then going horizontally out the window, only to snap out of it and sense my body fully in bed. Then it would start all over again. I knew at the time that this was an illusion and even found that I could control it somewhat. Eventually I grew bored with it and drifted off to sleep.

Some time later, I awoke with my mind acute, apparently in response to sensing a presence in the room, though conveniently I was simultaneously in a state of almost total body paralysis. It moved onto my bed and crawled atop my body, straddling me. I could feel its legs at my sides. It then seemed to put something over my face that made it difficult to breathe and made me feel as if I was trapped in my head, with little to no sense of my body. As I fought to open my eyes I found that I seemed to be in some dark, spacious masque with a porthole before me. Striving to see through the porthole, I got vague images of what I thought was the base of a gigantic tree, and along with that got the general sense that the area was a marsh or swamp.

Suddenly the masque was gone and I was aware of my entire body on the bed again, the creature still atop me. It was pushing its hands on my chest now, apparently in the attempts to suffocate me, and when that seemed to be judged as insufficient the creature then moved its knees on top of my chest to apply more excruciating pressure. Curiously, I have no recollection of how the encounter ended.

Upon awakening the following morning, I found the log I only vaguely remembered making after the experience in the notebook beside my bed — and then some.

At 1:31 AM, I wrote: “I keep having nightmares about being lifted up out of my bed and going through the window, of someone standing over me with an air tank on my face. My eyelids are nailed closed. I also had a dream sensation of being somewhat in this position around 4:00, feeling a presence in the room and falling on the floor.” I then signed out of the log at 1:18.

You cannot log out earlier than you logged in, nor can you have a first experience that takes place some three hours after the second experience. To say that I was in a particularly confused state that evening would be to make a mole hill out of a mountain to be sure, and that wasn’t the half of it.

Not only did I only vaguely recall making the log and only recall the second experience I documented, but I had absolutely no recollection at all of drawing the symbol I found in the notebook nearby the log, nor what it was supposed to mean. It was comprised of a circle with two crescents on the top and bottom in the manner that made it look like a crude drawing of an eye.

I later found this is a classic example of an experience of sleep paralysis, when one awakens before the “REM atonia” induced during dreamtime that ensures we do not act out our dreams shuts off. As a consequence, the unconscious compensates for the distortion or lack of sense data with hallucinatory phenomena that manifests in accordance with available cues from mental set and environmental setting. These cues are predictable, which is likely why the manifestations during sleep paralysis are cross-cultural, referred to variously as “old hag attacks,” being “hag-ridden,” or encountering the incubus or succubus.

It makes sense to me, and it takes only a little serious consideration. We awaken but feel detached from our paralyzed bodies, lingering between first- and second-person consciousness. This act of observing oneself results in the sense, at the other end of this dualistic state, of being observed, hence the sense of fear and the sense of an observing presence.

This guides the hallucinatory phenomena that fills the sensory vacuum, which conjures up just such a mysterious, malicious presence in your room which serves to confirm this sense of a dreadful presence. If you’re a male, you may also be erect in this state, making it likely that the hallucinatory narrative then moves to this vile entity straddling you. It may also lead one to perceive it as female, though in my case the creature gave off a sexless vibe.

Our minds being awake and our bodies being immobilized and locked on autopilot with respect to body functions also makes us utterly incapable of consciously exerting control on our breathing, which despite our efforts remains locked in shallow breathing mode. Our brains interpret this resistance as being suffocated. Mix this with the aforementioned menacing presence, and the next logical step in the hallucinatory storyline has its required cues: it is the mysterious presence in your room that is now proceeding to suffocate you.

The time issue bothered me, though given the interpretation of this experience of REM-atonia-induced hallucinatory phenomena, it’s not difficult to imagine this would also serve as an explanation.

This was the first time I had taken medication, and in my opinion it had only made things worse, for now I was unsure as to whether this was really happening, a product of my utter madness, or bad reactions to an antidepressant.

Now I was calling into question my own memories expressed in a written log I didn’t remember writing regarding an experience I apparently only partially consciously recalled.