An out of the body experience, sometimes also called astral projection, is an occurrence whereby a person’s consciousness is experienced fully outside of his or her body. Sometimes people experience it as the momentary awareness of floating above one’s body, and others, such as shamans, psychonauts, and yogis, speak of traveling to faraway places – in both the spirit realm and in the physical world. These may sound like encounters that only a mystic would have, but this is not true. You can learn how to do this. It just takes dedication and concentration.
Engage Deep Belly Breathing
All effective astral projection techniques require a relaxed body and a silent mind; therefore, the first step in any technique is deep, belly breathing, also known as diaphragmatic breathing. Whenever you engage your diaphragm with a deep belly breath, you also engage your parasympathetic nervous system. This system signals your body and mind to slow down and relax.
Progressive Relaxation Technique
As you start to feel yourself relaxing, going deeper and deeper, you can bring your awareness to each body part, starting with the feet and moving up the body, step by step, focusing your attention on relaxing your entire body. By the time you reach your head, you should be feeling very heavy.
Silencing the Mind
If you have a meditation practice, which is advised if you really want to get good at this, then you probably are already familiar with silencing the mind. Don’t try to fight any thoughts that arise, just try to watch them. See if you can make them pop! like bubbles. Continue with these first three techniques until you get really good at reaching a place of total relaxation of mind and body.
The key phrase for triggering astral projection is exit technique. There are many approaches for exiting the body, so you can try them out and see which one is most effective for your personality type. Don’t be discouraged if it does not work the first time. Just continue to practice with an open mind and a focused intention.
The Rope Technique
The Rope Technique was developed by Robert Bruce, one of the world’s most famous practitioners and teachers of astral projection and out of the body techniques. In this technique you create dynamic tension on a single point on your astral body, in an effort to try and force its separation from your physical body.
Attach a length of string, ribbon, or rope to the ceiling right above you. Make sure it is arm’s length from your lying position. You should be able to reach up and touch it. You are not really going to hang from it with your full body weight, but rather you are going to use it to create proprioceptive awareness, a sense of awareness of your body in space/time in relation to the position of the rope. You will reach up and pretend to grab and hold the rope, pulling yourself up and up, until the sensation is imprinted in your mind. By the end of the exercise, you should be able to feel yourself doing it without actually doing it.
When you start to feel dizzy from doing this, you know you are getting somewhere! You really want to tap into this vertigo. It is the first sign of astral separation from your physical body.
No matter what you feel, continue focusing on climbing the rope. Eventually you should feel a sense of full-bodied vibration. You might even feel paralyzed. Don’t worry, just keep repeating the action. Eventually, you will be able to pull your astral body out of your physical body. Your concentration may break the first few times this happens. When it does, you will feel like you are snapped right back into your body. Just start again until you get better at it.
The Monroe Technique
This method was developed by Robert Monroe, also famous for the Monroe Audio Series entitled Hemi Sync. As with any other method, he suggests first starting with relaxation of the mind and body.
Step Two: The Hypnagogic State
In this state you are trying to consciously enter and stay in the state just prior to sleep. It is a sort of midpoint between waking and sleep. With your body relaxed and your mind cleared, you pick an object on which to concentrate your attention. Hold it there until other images begin to emerge. Just watch these images passively. Do not follow them. This is called Condition A.
Step Three: Deepening Condition A
In this stage you want to clear your mind of imagery. See if you can lock your awareness into the blackness. Just focus on the depth of this blackness. If you start to see color or light patterns, do not be alarmed. Once the light/color patterns stop and there is only darkness, you are in Condition B. Condition B should feel like a deep void, where you experience no sensation whatsoever. This state is Condition C, and even deeper state.
Step Four: Playing in the Vibratory State
Once you can maintain condition C, you are ready for the Vibratory State. In working with this state it is essential that you not be disturbed. Tell yourself you will remember all that happens. The next steps according to Monroe go as follows:
- As you breathe, concentrate on the void in front of you.
- Select a point a foot away from your forehead, then change your point of mental reference to six feet.
- Turn the point 90 degrees upward by drawing an imaginary line parallel to your body axis up and above your head.
- Focus there and reach out for the vibrations at that point and bring them back into your body.
Step Five: Controlling the Vibrations
Here you are going to try to pull the vibrations into your body and move them around with awareness. Start by pulling them into your head and pushing them down to your toes. Get good at it.
Step Six: Partial Separation
Play with separating only one body part at a time. Feel it disconnect from your physical body.
Step Seven: Full Separation
Similar to the idea of the rope technique, try lifting your vibrational body out of the physical body. Start with something easy like hovering. Once you can do that, you are ready to take off.
So, there you have it. Tried and true methods of leaving your body. Time to go out there and explore!