Thanks you all, and Tom, on this one occasion I think I might speak for the group enough to say we're all glad to see your spending more time here.
It sounds then like it is partly a matter of the relative quality of the consciousness in the two states. .
I didn't explain my experience very well... I will be sitting in a chair, meditating or even dozing ... puzzling over something ... utterly non-verbal, I should add ... oh, it might be something like 'the general structure of the feel of a dendrite from the inside and trying to size it up as a potential descriptor, (background implications of 'inhabitable' different geometric structures waiting to be noticed and compared) of experience-able consciousness milieu. I am awake in physical, eyes closed... 'enter the tunnel' (terrible expression .. it is more like an elevator without walls that doesn't go anywhere, but the felt substance of the surround changes), then I am on the other side. The idea then goes through various modulations and I get (what is for me, for others it might be a big Doh!") a great insight and think, "Ooo ... better get back and write this down or I'll forget it!" But more often than not the structure simply evaporates as I slip back through to this side. Sometimes it doesn't, I get to bring it back, write it down, puzzle over it, and integrate it. Other times, not. So the question becomes: what is different on the different occasions? The relatively exotic (unfamiliar) content? Structure/substance is maybe one dynamic, but only a part. I don't so far detect anything even approaching the dramatic difference in brutishness between the two presentations of consciousness, either in feel or in content quality, suggested by the WoWist / SIMMist contrast. It's rather almost like the two information processing systems are not mutually interchangable: like say .pdf vs. .txt files. The point is that sometimes the information DOES get through: sometimes the two information systems ARE, to some degree, couple-able. I'm trying to identify why that changes ... points to look for ... what data to watch for, that, when sorted and filed, will help construct a model that will predict when (through the 'why') this coupling will be more or less effective.
Randy: The 'veil' may or may not be intentional. It seems like it is more like the difference might seem to a fish that transforms into a bird between water and air: the fish/bird knows that something is different, when crossing the boundary, but just what, there is no existing name or model (so, essentially, it is 'unthinkable') ... meanwhile thoughts thunk and skills exercised are only very partially translatable to the other side: For instance, there is direction, velocity, acceleration on both sides, but in the air the flapping tail doesn't work, while in the water, remembering the feel of wings gets interpreted through the guiding fins and 'thoughts thunk' with wings in one realm just all apart in to meaningless in the other. Something like that. Yes, I have studied dreaming in the past. Back in my teens I was fascinated by the idea of being awake 24 hours a day, asked for this, and got something very close: I was busy (so that I could remember it upon physical waking) most of the night. After only a few days, I realized it was way too much .... I could never integrate it all ..."get any sleep" or rest, so to speak, and said "Turn it off already! Turn it off!"
Sains, yes it sounds like you understand the difference I am pointing out.
In terms of 'mis-cast' dream characters, and similar mismatches, I came up with the following strategy back in my days of studying Jung: It happens that when we are dreaming we are thinking in images rather than words, and as all the various 'chunks of consciousness' of which we are composed engage in dialog (some dreaming is largely, apparently, a matter of settling of accounts of the day). The communicative coin of the realm here is the common fund of images (visual, audial, kinesthetic, etc), not words. (Where words DO surface, they are often used in pun-like fashion). So: If one chunk wants to represent a certain property, oh, say, a kind of Charity that our friend "Madge" characterizes best, it will show 'Madge', but devoid of all the other properties we know Madge to have, adding in others that are consistent with the message that it is trying to convey. Images used in this way will be not at all consistent with what we know them to be here ... it is approximately like (there) using images of numerals as pixels to raw a picture .... a series of modified "4's" stacked on top of each other might look like the Eiffel tower, having nothing to do with 4-ness. So, with all that yackety out of the way, the technique is precisely this:
Unit of meaning = X - X + A, where X is the set of properties associated with the image, and A are properties added in after. So, continuing with the example, I would say "Well, that's Madge-ness without any of the properties of Madgeness, except these (A) few here (Madge-flavored charity). I know that sounds like a complicated and bass-ackwards way to handle the data, but it actually makes for a pretty clean crisp filter when used on dream content where sub-components of consciousness are dialoging. (Not all dream content, obviously is of that nature. Some is 'lessons', some is doing and being, etc.