An out of body experience is known as an OBE or OOBE. It involves the sensation of floating outside the physical body and traveling through an alternate dimension.
These are often reported as near death experiences. They are also referred to as Astral projections.
While scientists are skeptical about the phenomenon, a survey conducted by OBE expert William Buhlman collected detailed accounts from more than 16,000 people around the world, all of whom had claimed to have had such an experience.
The OBE Survey
In the survey all the respondents were asked to describe their experience(s) in detail. The number of recurring features was quite astonishing.
85% heard buzzing, humming or roaring sounds
82% felt floating, sinking or spinning sensations
72% experienced sleep paralysis
56% felt vibrations or high energy sensations
24% saw, heard or spoke to a deceased loved one
22% saw or felt the presence of an unknown non-physical being
These striking similarities across such a broad range of respondents suggests that the OBE phenomena is very very real.
Nonetheless, scientists remain convinced that an OBE is just a trick of the brain.
The Classic OBE
Based on accounts from Robert Monroe (founder of The Monroe Institute) and William Buhlman, OBEs can occur spontaneously or with deliberate intent.
Generally these experiences begin with the body in a relaxed state, usually before or after sleeping.
Or they can occur during a meditation as the mind must be calm in order to induce a hypnagogic state.
It is theorised that once the mind is completely empty the energy centres of the body (known as chakras) open up so that the spiritual body can expand.
This release of chakra energy is thought to cause the vibrational phenomena, which many people report as a violent shaking accompanied by loud pulsing or buzzing noises.
At the same time, the body may become paralysed. It should be noted that his happens every night during sleep in order to stop people from acting out their dreams. It is a perfectly natural state to be in.
However, the only difference during an OBE is that the person experiencing it becomes aware of it.
The next step is to lift out of the body, either by floating upwards, sinking down through the bed, rolling over, or instantly appearing in a new location using only the power of thought.
Many people have also reported being pulled or lifted out of their bodies by helpful non-physical entities.
The Astral Plane
Once free from the physical body, experienced Astral projection travellers claim to be able to roam free through non-physical planes – of which there are thought to be many.
On their journey travellers may encounter deceased friends and family, as well as non-human entities in an array of different forms.
During an OBE all five senses can become heightened.
For example, short-sighted people have reported experiencing corrected vision and an ability to read the thoughts and emotions of other entities without actually speaking. This is also known as extra sensory perception or ESP.
Notably many people have also reported that they are able to observe our physical world in its normal state from a distant location together with the ability to move instantly through time and space.
When someone mentions “Alternate dimensions,” people tend to think of parallel universes – alternate realities that exist parallel to our own, but where things work or happen differently.
However, many believe that Alternate dimensions are simply different facets of what we perceive to be reality.
Most theories touch on how there might be many different realms of reality, even the existence of different worlds, universes and dimensions.
Throughout the years physicists and researchers, have been trying to prove the existence of these Alternate Dimensions.
What the concept of Astral projection suggests is that we are all naturally connected to these other worlds or universes. The concept has not been disproven.
Astral projection might be separate from our 3D sense of reality but, as been suggested time and time again, when we experience things like déjà vu or OBEs we may be getting a glimpse into one of those other worlds.
The psychologist Susan Blackmore believes that an OBE occurs when a person loses contact with sensory input from the body, while remaining in a conscious state. The illusion of a body is maintained, but perception is no longer derived from the senses.
By this theory, the astral plane is an imagined world based on memories. The realism of the experience is explained by the brain’s ability to create fully convincing realms, similar to dreaming.
While many OBE explorers reject this idea, stating that the astral plane appears far more real than any dream, the OBE phenomena remains a widely disputed subject.
It is clear that the whole OBE area needs more rigorous investigation.
Astral projection is known to have been practiced by ancient human civilisations which is why followers today believe that the practice should be treated with reverenence and respect.
Many people believe that Astral projection can be experienced while meditating although it can also come in many different forms.
They also believe that the ability to Astral project is a gift which everyone possesses and we are all born being able to do this.
So why are there those who can Astral project at will and those who have less success with the technique?
For any seasoned Astral projection traveller the answer to that question is simple – practice.
We hope this article gives you food for thought. Thanks for visiting, come back soon.
Author: Michael W