Thursday, June 12, 2014

Book review: Adventures Beyond the Body

Book review: Adventures Beyond the Body

by William Buhlman


Book review by Bob Peterson

I love OBE books. I've amassed a large collection of them, and it's always growing. Whenever a new OBE book comes out, I'm anxious to read it. Naturally, after I read it, I review it. The problem with that approach is that only the new books ever get reviewed; the classics don't get the attention they deserve. Some of these new books are refreshing, but they need to be really good to surpass the OBE classics. So I've made a point of occasionally re-reading and reviewing some of the classics, so that they don't get left behind. I started with Muldoon and Carrington's first book, The Projection of the Astral Body and later did Monroe's first book, Journeys Out of the Body. This time I'm reviewing another classic, Adventures Beyond the Body, by William Buhlman.

I love this book for so many reasons. One of the big reasons is that Bill Buhlman and I are a lot alike. We both started inducing OBEs in the 1970s. We both wrote our books about the same time. I submitted my book for publication in 1995 and it hit the shelves in 1997. I'm not sure when Bill submitted, but the copyright date is 1996.

Our books are similar too. We say a lot of the same things. I remember telling my wife a long time ago that if this book had been available a few years earlier, I might not have written mine. In other words: Many of the things Buhlman says in this book are so important that I felt compelled to write my own first book--risking public ridicule--just to make the information public (I tend to be a private person, at least as far as my spirituality is concerned).

This book, like mine, starts with OBE journal entries describing the excitement of discovery and what he learned along the way. Then it progresses to more solid information: the mechanics of the OBE.

Some of the OBEs from his journal are very intense. Only Jurgen Ziewe's books surpass some of these narratives.
"The energy is so intense it feels like the outer parts of me are being burned away. My entire outer self--my thoughts, fears and concepts--is being incinerated by the light. At first, I try to shield myself. I surround myself with thoughts only to realize that they too are being burned away by the intensity of the light..." p. 55.

"For the first time, I recognize that we have separated ourselves from our own source. How foolish we are. We focus on decaying molecular forms when true reality is always here, patiently waiting for us to open our eyes and see..." p. 56.

Buhlman's experiences are similar to mine, and his world view is similar as well. Chapter 7, "Mastering the Experience", has a table of OBE problems, their causes, and how to solve them. This is great information and exactly matches my experience. For example, on pages 223-224, Bill discusses non-physical guides:
"When we request guidance, we are often directed to the experience that is the more favorable to our spiritual development. Nonphysical guides are seldom visible. Instead, we may experience a strong impression or feeling of their presence...
...Unlimited assistance is always available, but it is up to us to make the request. Guides normally will not interfere without a specific request."
Another good example: I've always maintained that OBEs are different from lucid dreams: Take sex, for example. Sex in a lucid dream is very much like physical sex. In an OBE, it's different: difficult to describe, but unlike Earthly sex. Here's an excerpt from Buhlman's journals:
"We kiss and a surge of energy floods into my mind. Our bodies and our minds come together in an intense explosion of pure energy and joy. Our thoughts merge and touch one another in a thousand subtle ways. I feel immersed in her mind as she and I become as one." p. 42.
When I first met Bill many years ago, I was surprised to find out that we had similar views about everything: life, spirituality, even politics. These are sometimes reflected in some great quotes in this book. Some of my favorites:
"A sense of purpose and order becomes clear: I'm witnessing the evolution of consciousness, the evolution of myself through eons of time." p. 51.
Another:
"I have come to realize that the answers to the mysteries of our existence are not hidden; they are patiently waiting for us to extend our vision beyond the dense limits of matter." p. 212.
Here's another one of my favorite quotes:
"It's important for us to recognize that we orchestrate our lives, both physical and nonphysical, by the power of our thoughts. When our lives feel out of control, it's because we have surrendered our internal control to others or have refused to accept our personal responsibility...Some of the toughest lessons we are here to learn are directly related to thought control and personal responsibility. Our ability to focus and direct our thoughts is a central element of our personal evolution. The benefits we receive are beyond our expectations--our life is our reward." p. 225.
More importantly, Buhlman echoes my belief that OBEs are more than just a distraction from our mission here on Earth: it's an important--even integral-- step in our spiritual evolution. We feel the same about organized religion, too:
"Tragically, many modern religions and churches have become a poor reflection of the original spiritual experiences and teachings upon which they were built. The concept of personal spiritual experience has become an unexplored and mysterious phenomenon unknown to many religious leaders and their churches. As a result, millions of people settle for man-made beliefs and interpretations of their scriptures." p. 253.

Later, he even delves into the world of quantum physics. He cites the work of several famous scientists and physicists, and explains where he believes OBE fits in to the equation. Very well done.

One of the most important things I got out of this book when I read it the first time is how to increase your level of awareness: by demanding, "Clarity Now!" I think that simple concept changed a lot of people's lives.

Buhlman doesn't say much about psychic protection, but he does talk about resolving your fears and how detrimental they are. His take-charge attitude shines through on every page: you don't just ask for clarity; you demand it. If you adopt his kick-ass-and-take-names attitude, I firmly believe that negative entities will not dare to mess with you.

The OBE techniques in this book are also excellent. Not only does he teach the basics, he also has several rock solid exercises that aren't covered in other OBE books. For example, one of his methods is to repeat something like, "Now I'm out of body" as you fall asleep. Often this is repeated 40 to 60 times.

This is one book where I can honestly say I agreed with everything he said. He was spot on, as my friends in the U.K. say.

If I was pressed to find a down-side or a criticism, I'd have to say this: I wish there were more OBE journal entries. The book left me hungry for more. I would have doubled or tripled the journal entries in the book.

The writing is clear, concise and professional. This is a "must read" for anyone who wants to study or practice out-of-body experiences. Thumbs way up.

Bob Peterson
12 June 2014

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