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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Night They Came for Me: Out of Body, Out of Mind?

Out of body experiences are often romaticised in New Age literature. Yet the truth is that there are numerous kinds of OBEs, and some of them are more harmful than good. In today’s post I recount a few of my own OBE’s including a rather interesting experience where I was pulled out of my body and operated on by a team of “psychic surgeons”.
As I reported in my book Sage of Synchronicity, when I first began to get into meditation and explore other ways of knowing in the 1990s, I began to have a lot of out-of-body experiences. It seemed that every time I went sleep, or had an afternoon nap, I would go flying off. For me, the OBEs began with a whooshing type sound, and I would feel my energy moving out of my body in fast and furious fashion. These were primarily kinesthetic experiences, characterised by the physical sensation of movement. I didn’t see myself floating above my body, as in some near-death experiences.
There were often visual aspects to my OBEs, though. Since the physical eyes are not used during these times, the mind will often construct an image of what is “seen”. I eventually realised that I could not take what I “saw” during OBEs on face value.
Often there was no visual component at all, just the sense of flying through blackness. I suspect that my consciousness had dislocated from the body, and was moving through a “nearby” astral plane.
There were times, though, when I saw quite clearly where I was, though it was not always somewhere I recognised. One time I left my body and found myself flying over power lines above a road, dipping up and down with the rise and fall of the lines. It was like riding a roller coaster ride. Later I read Robert Monroe’s Journeys out of the Body, and noted that during his self-directed OBEs he was sometimes attracted to electricity. I’m not quite sure why this is, but I do know that electrical fields greatly affect consciousness fields., and often not in a positive ways (hint, never sit a laptop computer on your lap – one of the worst things you can do to your energy field). More about that in later post.
Another time, when I was having a drama (read “conflict”) with a friend of mine, I found myself flying out of my body, and descending into his bedroom, where I grabbed him by the neck, and started strangling him.

This is a classic example of a psychic attack, and in this case I was the perpetrator, albeit an unconscious one. This is why some people report waking up terrified, convinced someone is strangling, beating, or raping them. As they say, shit happens, and this stuff happens all the time (however, as people become more conscious of their unresolved emotional energy, these psychic projections lessen). Until a far greater percentage of human beings become more spiritually mature, we will continue to live in a rather volatile psychic environment.
Perhaps the most remarkable out of body experience happened to me not long after I went to live in Taiwan in 1999. At this time I was going through a kind of re-birthing and healing period in my life, as I was shifting a lot of stuff through my energy field. Much of this “movement” was not done by me consciously, but by spiritual intervention.
One night when I went to bed, I suddenly found myself being sucked out of my body by a great beam of energy. Because I have done a lot of deep consciousness work, I was perfectly conscious of what was going on. There was a low level “buzzing sound” all about me, and I could feel myself moving vertically upward into the energy field, which I saw as a conical beam of light. Instinctively I allowed myself to feel the “vibration” of the field, in order to get a sense if a benevolent or ‘dark’ intention lay behind what was happening. The field felt quite benign, so I relaxed fully, and allowed myself to be transported along the beam of light. The next thing I knew was that I had the sense of being in a dimly lit room of some kind, and there were four or five “entities” standing over me, as I lay on some kind of bed or bench. In my mind’s eye they were represented as Asian males (although this is a symbol I often get for “alien”, so this may not have been a literal mental representation of them). I knew they were doing something to my body, and it was slightly discomforting as they moved some kind of energy beam through me.
“What are you doing?” I asked them, which seemed like a perfectly decent question at the time.
“We are reversing the polarity of the atoms in your body”, a male voice told me matter-of-factly.
I had already made the decision to trust the process, so I allowed myself to relax completely, and I then fell into unconsciousness. That was the last recollection I had of the event.
As usual, I had complete recollection of the experience when I awoke, so the next day I went to the internet to find out if there was such a thing as reversing the polarity of atoms, and whether it was used in healing practices. I found one reference to it, and then put the idea aside. I had already had numerous encounters with spiritual and etheric entities, so I had no particular need to explore the experience further. I knew instinctively that I was being assisted in dealing with certain healing issues of mine.
However, if you do a Google search today, a decade later, you will find numerous references to similar practices. Take that of Keith Smith, for example.

Keith has had tremendous success with his system of correcting "switched" polarity in people with a wide range of physical, emotional or behavioral problems. By assisting people to re-establish the correct north-south magnetic polarity, he enables them to effectively heal themselves of many problems that medical science has yet to find solutions for.

Another time I was whisked out of my body by what I perceived to be a “grey” alien. He shot me skyward at a rate which was frightening, and I instinctively pulled away from him, and back into my body. The whole thing just felt wrong.
Out of body experiences do happen. Some of them are facilitated by helpful spiritual entities, other times they are initiated by entities which have mischievous intention. Much of the time OBEs occur because we have an unconscious need to escape from our bodies and our lives. These kinds of OBEs are not spiritually nourishing experiences, and are evidence that you are not assuming enough responsibility for your emotional energy. Thus, when I read some New Age accounts of OBEs, I have a great deal of concern. Often OBEs are represented as a sign of spiritual advancement, or a desirable spiritual experience. In most cases they are far from spiritually progressive. Most often, they are an indication that you are not meeting the emotional requirements needed to remain fully present in your body. Your mind and body are here now to work in tangent, as an holistic whole. Philosophies which deny and reject the body, or place the “spiritual’ above the physical, may unconsciously sabotage people’s spiritual development.
Rather than craving spiritual adventures out of the body, make your prime goal to be fully present in the body. Do not reject the vehicle that God has given you for your journey. Every day, when you wake up, spend five minutes to feel yourself fully in the body. This will do more to enhance your spiritual evolution than a 1000 OBEs.
Had any interesting or transformative OBEs? Any insights about them? Feel free to share  here.


  1. Just one that I can remember. It happened about 2 or 3 months ago.

    I was sleeping and felt myself out of my body and somewhere near my head. I could see my body sleeping. Someone was with me, but I couldn't see anyone. They were talking to me. There was a very loud buzzing and the "person" was telling me that this is what it felt like to be connected to the "whole." I felt very happy and relaxed but was worried about my body. I asked if they were sure that my body was okay, because I have had episodes of sleep apnea. But I noticed that my chest was rising and falling with my breath. I remember waking up and telling myself that I would never feel "alone" again. This euphoria lasted for several days, but eventually the feeling of connectedness went away.

  2. Interesting post Nancy. It has given me an idea for today' post. Thanks!

  3. Hi Marcus, It seems there's a fine line between OBEs and lucid dreaming. I guess my few experiences have been the latter, since I don't have any recollection of lifting out of my body and flying off. Instead, I'm wide awake, but aware that I'm dreaming, and I'm fully in control of my faculties.

    However, the experience is so exotic and so thrilling that I zip right back into bed. Like Nancy, I feel very uplifted for a couple of days.

    The one longer experience was somewhat bizarre and dramatic and involved a well known person. I found myself in the desert with a group of people sitting in a circle. It was a group that was working with Carlos Castaneda in the dream state.

    For some reason, I questioned something Castaneda said. It seemed to me there was no room for independent thinking. He took it as a criticism and immediately confronted me and rudely kicked me out of the group. I still recall his scornfully comment as he banished me: "You are still in eleventh dimension kindergarten."

    With that, I woke up in my bed and was very confused about why I was at home and not in the desert any more. It took a few moments before I realized that I had been dreaming.

    A few weeks later, I was at the American Booksellers Association (now called Book Expo)where publishers display books that will be published in coming months. I stopped in my tracks when I spotted a new Castaneda book. It was called: Being in Dreaming.

    Much latter, after his death, I learned that the way he acted toward me was typical behavior on his part.

    None of what happened was real in the normal sense. It was clearly an alternate reality.- Rob

  4. That's a fascinating story, Rob (BTW - sometimes I don't know if I'm Talking to you or Trish!). My sense (and I could be wrong) is that you were tapping into an energy field around Castaneda and his group. This has happened to me a few times. You may have been interacting with either the individual (Castaneda's) mind, along with the group. This same thing happened to me with mystic Stuart Wilde on several occasions. Some of these connections were quite positive, others suggested manipulation and control tendencies. My sense is that Stuart has drifted in and out of darker stages in recent years. I've never met him personally, though. Like Castaneda, he is into psycho-tropic drugs. My take on drugs (and I've never bothered to try any except for the odd cup of coffee or glass of wine) is that while some can be beneficial, they can trap one at the beginning stages of trans-rational development - the psychic reams. Once the ego attaches itself to the drug experience, the visions become and end in themselves, and there is a huge potential for all sorts of distortions to come into play. Most notably, drugs do not help you become present in the body (crucial for spiritual development) - and in fact may have the opposite effect. Also, while they may help you "see" your spiritual issues, they have a limited ability to heal them.

    In other words, with drugs it can be a case of one step forward, two steps backwards. I think that this is what has happened to Stuart Wilde in recent years. His approach to spiritual development has reached its limit. And say this not as final 'pronouncement" on Stuart Wilde. He may be perfectly aware of this himself, or may acknowledge it in time.

  5. I remember Stuart Wilde from the 1980s, haven't heard his name in a long while. Castaneda is always linked with drugs, because of his first book, but he disavowed them and said he didn't need them. Of course, he was a very controversial figure, both as an anthropologist and as a mystic.

    Terrence McKenna's writings, on the other hand, are drenched in drug use, particularly psilocybin mushrooms. He even wrote about ET encounters related to the drug, and he saw the mushrooms themselves as cosmic entities.

  6. Stuart Wilde's work has changed quite a lot. He takes groups of seekers to South America on Ayawauska tours (I know that's not the right spelling). My sense is that he is now overselling the psychic, and doesn't appreciate its limitations as an evolutionary tool. It can be useful - as in Integrated Intelligence - but there is a need to move beyond it into deeper presence.

    I have never read Castaneda. With McKenna and UFOs, he was probably tapping into the transdimensonal realms. Stuart Wilde does the same. The problem is, once you start fighting the demons there (as with Stuart Wilde), it never stops. There are just too many nasty entities out there. The key is to recognise that, and check your shadow, but not get lost in the fight against the darkness. You can never win that fight - it's like trying to put out a fire with gasoline. Stuart Wilde believes that humanity will be wiped out very soon, and he's seen it in his visions. This is somewhat of a downer, and has upset a few of his followers!

  7. The Stuart Wilde I remember, I believe, was leading trips to Glastonbury and writing about Camelot.