Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Should I Share My OBEs With Friends?

Should I Share My OBEs With Friends?

by Bob Peterson

I recently saw a very good question on one of the astral projection Facebook groups:
"Should I share my astral projections / out-of-body experiences with friends or family?"
Let me tell you what happened to me.

Telling My Family

In my first book, I wrote about how I got into OBEs when my brother, Joe, bought Robert Monroe's first book, Journeys Out of the Body for my dad in 1979. My dad didn't talk about the book, but I borrowed it from him and read it. To say it profoundly impacted my life is certainly an understatement! It shook my entire world view to the core and my life was never the same again. I was only 18; just out of high school and into college.

I felt like I had literally just set foot in an undiscovered new non-physical world, so naturally, I wanted to share my new profound discovery.

I knew I couldn't share my OBEs with my mom. She was Catholic, and went to church every Sunday. I figured she'd think I was playing with fire, putting my soul at risk, or dancing with the Devil. And at that point, I had had some pretty scary things happen, so my stories would only scare her more, and she didn't need that.

At one point, I tried to tell my dad. He had read Monroe's book, and books on Edgar Cayce, so he leaned toward the metaphysical. Unfortunately, he really didn't seem interested. He kind of brushed me off. I was the youngest of five kids, and his life was busy, so he really didn't seem to want to talk about it.

I knew Joe would be more receptive to the concept; he had studied (but not practiced) Esoterica and occultism all his life (and hey, he still does: visit esotericarchives.com if this interests you.), so I told him and his wife about my first few OBEs.

At first, they seemed to believe me. They acted excited and wanted to try it themselves. They tried a lot of techniques, but didn't get the results I had. To their credit, they even leveled up and built a full-sized working flotation tank in the spare bedroom of their apartment. In the end I think they may have induced one or two OBEs, but it was a struggle. Eventually they gave up, and at that point, I didn't have enough experience or know-how to help them.

After sharing a few of my OBEs with them, they started giving me "the look." They never actually said anything negative, of course. It was all non-verbal communication. Maybe it meant they didn't believe me, they doubted my sanity, or worse, they thought I was hallucinating or losing touch with reality. It's more likely just that they thought I was just making it all up to get attention. Either way, it was a negative reaction, so I vowed to shut up and keep my experiences to myself. I never shared another OBE with them.

My other brothers were out of state and I thought my sister wouldn't be receptive to it at all. I knew I could only tell one person: myself. I wrote my OBEs down in a spiritual journal. When that was full, I filled another, then another, and another. And I vowed not to talk about it unless I knew for sure the person was receptive to it.
Even when my first book was published many years later, I was still afraid of "the look" and how my family would react. I never told them about the book, but eventually they found out anyway. Surprisingly, my mom was very supportive. She didn't talk about my OBEs, but she said she was proud of me for writing a book, and hugged me.

It's still hard for me to talk about my OBEs with my family.

Telling My Friends

As the months passed, I became more and more desperate to talk to someone--anyone--about my OBEs, which were piling up rapidly.

One day I was walking through the University of Minnesota campus toward my Physics 1001 class with my best buddy in college; a blunt, smart, and crude man named John Fitzsimmons. He had a brilliant mind, but he disrespected all women and referred to them all (including his sister and mother) as c*nts. In a moment of fool-hearted bravery, I mustered all my courage and told him about my OBEs as we walked.

At first, John listened patiently, then he stopped abruptly. He spun me around, put his hands on my shoulders and looked deep into my eyes. He didn't say a word. He just looked into my eyes. I asked, "What are you doing?" He said, "Trying to figure out if you're serious." Then he looked at me as if I'd lost my mind. Then we continued walking in an uncomfortable silence.

Finally I said, "You know me, Fitz. You're my best friend. I'd never lie to you. Do you believe me?" He stopped and stared into my eyes again. Then, after an uncomfortable pause, he said, "You know I don't believe in all that crap. But I believe that you believe it happened."

That was basically when our friendship ended. I wasn't hurt that John didn't believe me. I wasn't even looking for his support. I just needed to tell someone. But at that point I had to face the stark fact that John are I were just too different: He was a staunch materialist, and like it or not, I was becoming more and more spiritual. By force, it seemed. He was a stubborn student of physics, and I had seen firsthand proof of a non-physical world with my own non-physical eyes.

At that point a light bulb came on. I realized I didn't have to put up with his misogynistic rants and negativity. I asked myself, What do we have in common? Not much. Thus ended our friendship. John and I didn't have a fight or a falling-out; it's just that I got busy, he got busy, and we never went out of our way to hang out together anymore.

It was about that time I joined a student-organization called MSPR: the Minnesota Society for Parapsychological Research. There I met good friends who were more receptive to my OBEs. When one door closes, another one opens, right?


Many years ago I got an email from a woman who told me her story. She said she made the mistake of talking to her family about her out-of-body experiences. To make a long story short, her family did an "intervention" and had her committed to an insane asylum where she was forcibly held and over-medicated. She remained in captivity for more than five years until they finally decided she was not a danger to herself or anyone else. She deeply regretted having told anyone about her experiences and gave me a stern warning to keep my mouth shut and never share any stories with anyone. It would have saved her five years of her life.

Robert Monroe's doctors found him quite sane, so I wasn't too worried about my mental health. It wasn't for another few years that I obtained Gabbard and Twemlow's book With the Eyes of the Mind which analyzed in detail just how "sane" OBEs are [I had to write to the publisher to buy a copy. And in case you're wondering: No, OBEs have nothing to do with insanity. But that topic is beyond the scope of this article.] Still, her warning was a stark reminder not to go blabbing about them to just anyone.

Of course, that didn't stop me from publishing a damn book about it and telling the whole world, right? But by then, times had changed and people were a little more receptive to the idea. And by then, I didn't give a crap what people thought of me. Talk about facing fears! But I digress...

Religious Conservatives

Obviously, if you were raised by religious conservatives, you should probably keep your experiences to yourself and not share. You can almost guarantee they're going to judge you and try to tell you it's a sin, or the work of Satan, despite the fact that there's absolutely no evidence to back up that statement. It doesn't matter if they're Christian, Muslim, Jewish, or any other religion. A closed mind is a closed mind, so don't waste your time.

Of course, I make one exception to the rule, and that is for Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses and any other religious zealots who come to my door to peddle their religion. That's when I let the crazy out! I tell those...ahem...bastards... everything!
"Let me ask you something: Would you rather watch a ball game on television or live at a stadium? Would you rather hear your favorite artist on the radio or at a live concert? Okay...So would you rather read about Jesus Christ in the Bible or meet him in person? Have faith in him, or shake his hand and give him a hug?"

"When it comes to building your house, whose advice would you trust more: a guy at Home Depot who's done it themselves, or a guy who wrote a book about it two thousand years ago? Okay...Now what about a religious experience?..."
You get the idea. Have fun with those guys! Don't hold back. You may just open their minds. Just be sure you know the Bible better than they do. (I almost always do, and I often send them home with Bible homework!)


So if you feel like sharing your out-of-body stories, my advice is: be cautious and know your audience. Make sure they'll be receptive. Most people are still not ready for the truth.

It's frustrating not being able to tell anyone about your OBEs. It can be lonely as hell. As someone recently pointed out, it's not a good conversation starter for a first date!

Sometimes it reminds me of the old Black Sabbath song, "Lonely Is the Word" from the Ronnie James Dio era:
"I've been higher than stardust
I've been seen upon the sun
I used to count in millions then
But now I only count in one
Come on, join the traveler
If you got nowhere to go
Hang your head and take my hand
It's the only road I know
Yeah, lonely is the word"

Bob Peterson
27 August 2019

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Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Review: Fast Astral Projection for Beginners

Review: Fast Astral Projection for Beginners

by Didi Clarke

Today I'm reviewing the book Fast Astral Projection for Beginners: Your Guidebook of Astral Traveling Techniques by Didi Clarke.

In my opinion, this is a run-of-the-mill self-published astral projection book with nothing to distinguish itself and nothing significant to add to the genre. I have the same gripes about this book as I have many others like it:
  • It's way too short, at just 58 pages, although the last 10 are just promotion of her other books.
  • She doesn't seem to speak from personal experience and gives no narratives or examples of her experiences in astral projection.
  • Her techniques are basically a parroting of other techniques, and not explained as well as the original versions.
  • There are no unique new ideas or techniques.
Clarke gives four astral projection techniques:
  • The rope technique, but a poorly implemented visualization-oriented version, unlike Robert Bruce's original technique that uses only "tactile imagination." Clarke actually asserts that the "rope" you use to escape your body is the "silver cord" so many talk about. Well...as far as I know, that's pure fabrication. I don't recall anyone else in the genre who asserts this. As far as I'm concerned, the rope itself is pure imagination: a device to trick your mind out of it normal physical paradigm and into the OBE paradigm.
  • The Monroe Method, but again, not explained as well as Monroe did. This is not Monroe's "Lines of Force" technique that I've talked about in the past, but another.
  • The Point-Shift Method, which is just trying to shift your point of view to a slightly relocated point of view.
  • The Self-Visualization Method, which is a poor take on an old staple of Occult astral projection techniques: creating and using a "simulacrum" or imaginary double to focus your consciousness. Clarke writes this about the technique:
    "I've found that this method works best when you're standing up, as opposed to sitting or lying down." (pg. 26)
Seriously? Standing up? If your body has enough muscle tension to keep you standing, you're not really out-of-body, right? And if you're standing, your body will hold too much tension to allow you to let go. If you induce an OBE from a standing position, your body would probably collapse in a heap. Mine would, anyway. Yes, there have been cases in which people have left their body and it keeps right on walking and such. Mary Deioma's book, Loved comes to mind. It's even happened to me, but purely by accident. Still, it certainly seems like an odd thing to recommend. I would recommend total relaxation instead.

Clarke also dedicates a chapter to remote viewing, and one to lucid dreaming, but neither is given proper attention, and neither is an OBE.

She also gives her own variant of Wake Back To Bed (WBTB) which she calls the REM Disruption, but unlike the conventional 6 hours of sleep, she recommends setting an alarm for 4 hours of sleep. Maybe she got this from Albert Taylor's book, Soul Traveler?

Curiously, she offers instructions on how to return to your body when you're done. Well, that right there sounds like the voice of inexperience to me: OBEs end automatically, and usually way too early. The trick is staying out as long as you can before you get automatically sucked back in. In other words, getting back in your body is not something you should ever need to worry about.

Clarke does give some sound advice with regard to practice. For example, she warns against practicing halfheartedly (pg. 40). This is very true. But advice like this is scant.

She seems to be yet another author trying to make a living from writing lots of tiny books on a lot of topics. I can't fault her (or anyone) for wanting to make money from writing, but it demonstrates that astral projection is not the primary focus in her life. You'd do better to get a book that displays passion for Astral Projection / OBEs from someone who has made it their life's work, like William Buhlman, Robert Bruce, or Graham Nicholls.

On the plus side, the book is well written and organized. I didn't find any glaring grammar or spelling problems.

I'm sorry, but I just can't recommend this book. It's better than some, but it's way too short, and doesn't go into enough depth on any topic. And as far as I can tell, the author doesn't write from experience. It's just a restating of what other people have written on the subject, but better.

I'll give it 2 stars out of 5.

Bob Peterson
13 Aug 2019

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Hacking the Out of Body Experience

Hacking the Out of Body Experience

by Bob Peterson

I just wanted to let everyone know that my new book, Hacking the Out of Body Experience: Leveraging Science to Induce OBEs, is now available to purchase on amazon, both in print and for Kindle. I tried very hard to make this the best OBE "How-To" book ever written.

The paperback version is available in the United States by Clicking on this link but it's also available in the U.K., Canada and elsewhere.

The Kindle version is available by Clicking on this link.

Instead of reviewing my own book, which seems kind of lame and self-serving, I'll let the book stand on its own. I will, however, provide a table of contents so you can see the variety of techniques in the book. It should be no surprise that several of the books chapters have appeared in my blog already, because I've shared a lot of the information here first.

Table of Contents
Introduction 11

Part 1 - Out-of-body Basics 17
1. So Many Questions 19
2. Becoming an Ideal Candidate for OBEs 31
3. The Science of OBEs, the PFC, and the TPJ 41
4. Robert Monroe’s Lines of Force Technique 53
5. The Vibrations 59
6. OBEs, Sleep Cycles, and Brain Waves 101 63
7. Sleep Paralysis and OBEs 69
8. Overcoming Fear 79
9. The Guardian of the Threshold 87
10. The Four OBE States 93
11. The Three Strategies to OBE Induction 101

Part 2 - The Direct OBE Induction Strategy 103
12. Harnessing the Hypnagogic (Pre-Sleep) State 105
13. Harnessing the Hypnopompic (Post-Sleep) State 111
14. The Five Approaches to the Direct OBE Induction 115
15. Preparing For Liftoff: Mental Preparation 123
16. Preparing For Liftoff: Physical Preparation 131
17. How to Focus Your Mind for an OBE 149
18. The Cloud or I Am Elsewhere Technique 153
19. The Target Technique 155
20. Simulacrum, Cube and Black Box Techniques 159
21. The Spinning Disc Technique 161
22. The Floating Beach Ball / Sphere Technique 163
23. The Pineal Doorway Technique 165
24. Rocking and Swaying Techniques 167
25. The Yoyo Technique 169
26. The Falling In A Well and Cone Techniques 171
27. The Feet Zoom Technique 173
28. The Swinging Arms Technique 175
29. Ab Crunch, Tai Chi and Exercise Techniques 177
30. The Almost Move Technique 179
31. The Flash or Running Technique 181
32. Rolling, Spinning, and Tornado Technique 183
33. The Rope Technique 185
34. The Washing Hands Technique 187
35. The Feel for Buzzing Technique 189
36. Heavy / Light Technique 191
37. Brain Crush and Straining the Brain Techniques 193
38. The High Pitch Whine Technique 195
39. The Song Replay Technique 197
40. Imaginary Shouting for OBE 199
41. Mantras for OBE 201
42. The Heartbeat Technique 203
43. The Candle Flame Technique 205
44. The Orange Peel Technique 207
45. The Swinging Hypnagogic Image Technique 209
46. Problem Solving for the Direct Strategy 213

Part 3 - The Indirect OBE Induction Strategy 221
47. Introduction to the Indirect OBE Strategy 223
48. Chi Circulation, Energy Bouncing, and Chakras 227
49. Hypnosis and the Christos Technique for OBEs 237
50. The Desire Factor and the Thirst Technique 239
51. OBE Affirmations and Prayers 243
52. Self-Labeling and Self-Talk 247
53. OBEs and Music 251
54. OBE Narratives and Walk-Throughs 255
55. Sneaking Past the Gatekeeper 257
56. The Sleep Directive Technique 261
57. The Wake Back To Bed (WBTB) Technique 263
58. WBTB and Technique Cycling 267

Part 4 - Turning Lucid Dreams into OBEs 271
59. Lucid Dreaming 273
60. Keeping Dream and OBE Journals 275
61. Appointments, Trigger Mechanisms and Anchors 283
62. Turning Lucid Dreams into OBEs 289

Part 5 - Brain hacks and Assisting Technologies 291
63. Introduction to Brain Hacking 293
64. Breath Work and Proper Breathing 297
65. Sound Technologies and Binaural Beats 301
66. Sound and Light Machines 303
67. Vitamins, Supplements and Probiotics 305
68. Aromatherapy and Scented Oils for OBEs 315
69. The Pineal Gland, Contaminants, and Boron 317
70. OBEs, Celibacy, Masturbation and the Sex Drive 321
71. Dietary Considerations 325
72. OBEs and the Default Mode Network 331
73. Odds and Ends and Superstitions 335
74. Putting It All Together 339
75. When All Else Fails: A Formula for OBE Success 345
76. The Future of OBE research 349
77. Conclusions 351

Bob Peterson
01 August 2019