AP_04.TXT FILE 4 of 15 - CompuServe Astral Projection Class by Don DeGracia, 1994 Astral P

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AP_04.TXT ------------------------------------------------------------------- FILE 4 of 15 - CompuServe Astral Projection Class by Don DeGracia, 1994 ------------------------------------------------------------------- Astral Projection Class on CompuServe by Don DeGracia: 72662,1335 Copyright 1994 None of this material may be reproduced without explicit permission from the author. HOW TO ASTRAL PROJECT - PART 1 1. USING DREAMS AS A SPRINGBOARD FOR ASTRAL PROJECTING Well, we've gone through the theory, now it's time to get to the practice. The $10,000 question is: how do you astral project? There are two main methods I will discuss: 1. becoming lucid in a dream, and 2. by putting yourself into a trance. We will discuss each of these methods in some detail because these are the methods I have used successfully time and time again. There is also a third method you will find which I will mention, though I do not use this method. This third method involves visualization excercises. We will discuss dream methods first, trance methods second, and then end this section with a discussion of visualization methods. Also, I will mention briefly tapes and other devices that people use to achieve OOBEs. Before getting to specific methods, I want to lay out one important thing that you should do: *-------> KEEP A JOURNAL! <--------* This is *very* important. You want to keep some kind of concrete record of all of your experiences with altered states of consciousness. Why? Because it is very easy to forget the details of these experiences. You may think you will remember something, but, just as is the case with our normal dreams, you will forget as time goes on. If you have a record of your experiences you can always refer back to it at any time. I'm not kidding either; it's very easy to forget the details of specific projections. Even now I will recount an old projection to someone, then go look the actual entry up in my journal and realize I have forgotten important parts of the projection or have confused two different projections. Another reason for keeping records of your experiences is that, as these records accumulate over time, you can go back periodically and read through them. What you may then discover are similarities and regularities in your experiences that you may not have found otherwise. For example, after I had been projecting for a few months I read over my journal and discovered a recurring pattern in my projections. What I discovered is that, often, I would attempt to fly in my projection but, once I would start to ascend, my way would be blocked by tree branches. Now, this didn't happen all the time, only once in a while. It occurred infrequently enough that I didn't realize that it was a pattern. It was only by looking at my accumulated records over a period of about 6 months that I realized this was occurring often enough that it might mean something. And mean something it did. I have since come to realize that these tree branches blocking me from flying away were a message from my subconscious mind. Every time this occurred in my projections - the trees preventing me from flying - it was a symbol of a serious defect in my personality. It took me some time to figure this symbolism out, but once I did I started working on this problem. And over time, as I've overcome this problem in my personality, I have not been plagued by the occurrence of trees blocking me from flying in my projections. So, not only is the above an example of why you should keep good records, but it's also an example of what I said earlier about how your personality appears to be *outside* of you during a projection and how projections are a form of self-therapy. Back to note keeping: In my case, for a long time I simply kept a notebook close to my bed. Everytime I had a projection the very first thing I would do when I returned here to the physical plane is write down as much as I could remember of my projection. The entries I've made have been as long as 10 pages (in the case where I remembered the projection well), or may have only been a quick outline of notes that I later (usually the same day) went back and filled in. Sometimes, I have gone one or two days before recording the experience, but I don't recommend this. I've also made notes on whatever scrap paper was available to me. Eventually, I've transfered all my notes to the computer. Now I keep my astral projection journal through my word processor. But still, I often write it down on paper before typing it into the computer. The bottom line is to do whatever is convenient for you, but definately keep records of your expereinces! Keeping a journal takes discipline. Astral projecting, just like any other skill, requires discipline, and keeping good notes is a part of the discipline you need to be succesful. Another thing I want to say at the begining of this section on methods is that astral projection is a SKILL. As such it is like any other skill that humans have; some people pick it up easily, others do not. I like to draw the analogy between learning to astral project and learning to play a musical instrument. Some people are born with the talent to play a musical instrument. A very few people are born musical geniuses. For most of us, however, the only way to learn a musical instrument is by *practice*. And for those of us who have to practice, our learning may come easily or it may only come with much work and dedication. Well, learning to astral project is the exact same thing. A very few people are born with the talent to astral project. For some, the learning process comes easily. For most of us, learning to astral project requires work and effort. THERE IS NOTHING MAGICAL ABOUT LEARNING TO ASTRAL PROJECT. Like anything else, you need to learn the right theory, the right techniques and PRACTICE them. And like anything else in life, you get out of it what you put into it. The more you practice, the more you attempt to learn, the better you will be. And, unlike other skills we learn here in the physical world, such as the example I gave for learning to play a musical instrument, the factors that underlie your ability to project are primarily *psychological*. Factors such as intelligence, personality, emotional make-up, social upbringing, and your belief system are all going to be determinants in how hard or how easy it is for you to project. So, for example, you don't really have to change your beliefs to learn to play an instrument or to learn to play baseball. However, when you learn to astral project, your beliefs are critical. If you hold certain beliefs it will be impossible for you to astral project (i.e. if you are a totally cynical materialist). Other beliefs could potentially lead you to harm when you learn to astral project (i.e. if you are a staunch Christian who believes in Hell - you just might find yourself in Hell during a projection and scare the **** out of yourself!). So, this is just another way to say what I said earlier; when you learn to astral project, you are embarking on a journey of *self-transformation* to some extent or another. Now, there is no easy way to determine if you are a person to whom astral projection comes easily or if you are the kind of person who has to work hard at achieving a projection. At the very end of these notes I will discuss how you can use astrology to determine your propensity towards having an OOBE. But these astrological methods of determing how likely you are to have a projection are only indicators. And furthermore, these astrological methods are limited by the accuracy of astrology, and in particular by the accuracy of the interpretation of your chart (reading charts isn't easy to start with, let alone using a chart to determine if you can astral project or not.) Even if your chart predicts that it would be easy for you to project, this is still no substitute for learning the right methods and for honest practice and work. So, until you can prove otherwise, it's best not to glamorize your potential skills at astral projection. It's best just to assume that, as an average person, you will have to put some work and effort into your attempts to astral project. So, this said, let's get into the "how to" of astral projection. I suppose it takes some of the mystique and excitement out of astral projecting when we realize that we very instinctively, and *unconsciously* astral project all the time. Except in this case we don't call the activity "astral projecting". What I am referring to, of course, is the very common process that we call "dreaming". As I said above, DREAMS AND ASTRAL PROJECTIONS ARE VERY CLOSELY RELATED. In a nutshell, dreams are UNCONSCIOUS (or you could say "instinctive") astral projections, and astral projections are CONSCIOUS dreams. Let us now explore this notion in detail. Every one of us dreams every night. We may not remember our dreams the following morning, but this does not mean that we did not dream. You can take it for granted that you dream at night, whether you remember it or not. When I discussed theory above, I said a couple of things about dreams. First I said that psychologists do not have a good explanation of what dreams are. It was also stated that occultists claim that the act of dreaming is a transfer of our consciousness from the physical plane to the astral plane. The bottom line is, NO ONE KNOWS FOR SURE WHAT DREAMS ARE. But the nice thing about this is that it doesn't matter if no one knows what dreams are, because we EXPERIENCE dreams for our- selves. So, we can explore and study our own dreams directly, and from these explorations come to our own conclusions about what our dreams are are not. Now, part of the problem is attitude. In our society in general dreams aren't given much credence. We generally associate dreams with fantasy and unreality. We definately do NOT take dreams as seriously as our physical waking life. Or, if we do take dreams seriously it's usually at the level of those dream interpretation books you see in the supermarket checkout lines which provide you with pat, simple-minded explanations of what your dreams mean. On more "intellectual" levels, we run into Freudian or Jungian-based ideas, nebulous ideas that do little to address the concrete fact that we all dream. These types of ideas, that focus on the symbolism or meaning of dreams, important though these views are in some respects, implicitly deny the concrete reality of the fact that our dreams are real experiences that happen to our consciousness. It's ironic when you think about it. Our society, with its physical sciences, has incredible knowledge and control over the physical forces of Nature (albeit a tenuous and perhaps deluded sense of control), yet, with our practical and literal mentalilty, we don't take the fact that we dream literally. Dreams, are "symbolic", "subjective", "psychological", which implies they are not real, not objective events. So, right from the start we pretty much have built into us by our very society a bad attitude about our dream experiences. Since society as a whole doesn't take dreams too seriously this creates a situation where we are, basically, completely ignorant of the nature of our dream experience. Thus, the first thing you, as a potential astral projector, need to do is to CHANGE YOUR IDEAS AND ATTITUDES ABOUT WHAT YOUR DREAMS ARE. Consider this: When you dream, *you* are *somewhere* doing *something*. Right? Wherever you are when you dream, you definately EXIST, right? Things are going on in your dreams: you are doing things, interacting with other people, being involved in situations, etc. So, to say dreams aren't real flys right in the face of your direct experience. For, when you dream, you are experiencing *something*. What you have to realize is that YOUR DREAMS ARE REAL EXPERIENCES OF YOUR CONSCIOUSNESS. Basically, we all live a dichotomous life. We live two lives. One life we live here in the physical plane. The second life we live in the world where our dreams occur. They are both REAL. They are very different from each other, but each life is totally and completely real IN ITS OWN TERMS. See, the problem with how we look at our dream life stems from the fact that we try to interpret it in terms of our physical life. Our physical life has certain characteristics, the most basic and important of which is our experience of SPACE and TIME. Both space and time have very definite properties in our normal waking life, and our entire mind and perception are conditioned by the properties of space and time as we know them here in the physical world. For example, we cannot see around a corner here in the physical world. Nor can we go backwards in time. Time is an overpowering factor in our waking experience. We were all born, we are all aging, and we shall all grow old and die; Time. These things are so fundamental, we take them completely for granted. Now, given how fundamental time and space are, and given the fact that we take time and space so for granted, what we do then is interpret our dreams in terms of our physical experience with space and time. And of course, as each and everyone of us knows FROM OUR DIRECT EXPERIENCE, our dreams make no sense whatsoever if we think of them in terms of our experiences here in the physical world. So, the normal "knee jerk" reaction is to conclude that dreams are NOT real, since, obviously, our physical experience IS real. Well, this attitude assumes too much and takes way too much for granted. Isn't it completely possible that there is a logic to our experience in the world of dreams, a logic of its own that could be DIFFERENT from our physical waking experience? Could it be that, in the world of dreams, space and time behave DIFFERENTLY than they do here in the physical world? Could it be, perhaps, that the place where dreams occur is indeed a world of its own, a completely natural world with its own laws of space and time? Such thinking takes us right back to the occult idea of the planes. The astral plane is the world in which dreams occur, and it is a world DIFFERENT from this physical world, which operates according to laws of Nature different from (but related to) the laws of Nature that operate here on the physical plane. I do not want to go off on this too deeply. What I am trying to do here is to expose attitudes that we all possess and take for granted. The bottom line of what I'm getting at is trying to help you, the reader, realize that it IS very possible to think of your dreams as objective experiences occurring somewhere. Whether you buy into occult ideas or not doesn't matter. What matters is that you start to take your dreams seriously, that you begin to appreciate that, when you dream, YOU ARE HAVING EXPERIENCES THAT ARE JUST AS REAL AS YOUR EXPERIENCES HERE IN THE PHYSICAL WORLD. This last statement you need to internalize, especially to be able to see the intimate connection between your dreams and your astral projections. So, whether you want to believe that your dreams are experiences just as real as your experience of reading these words or not, I'm going to have to assume you will at least pretend for the time being that this is the case so I can go on with the discussion. Having established that our dreams are real and objective experiences like our physical experiences, we need to look closely at the relationship between these dual lives that we all live. Let's now look at some facts about dreaming. There are two facts that we need to consider, and each of these is something we have directly experienced. Most importantly, we will see that the key here is memory. First fact: we do not, as a rule, remember our dreams as well as we remember our physical experiences. Second fact: When we are dreaming we generally do not remember the facts of our physical life, nor do we even realize we are dreaming and that we even live a physical life. Both of these are absolutely true. I have experienced this, and so have you, as has every other human on this planet. These are both very common facts about our existence. What we need to ask is: What do these facts *mean*? First off, these two facts are two of the main reasons we don't treat our dream life as being equal to our waking life. There is no *continuity* between our dream and waking lives. For the average person, the dream and waking lives are mostly separate from each other. Sure, one may dream of events which occurred when awake, and even rarer, one may remember dream events that are relevant to one's waking life (such as deja vu for example, or maybe a dream premonition). Generally speaking though, this discontinuity between our dream and waking life is the main thing that prevents our physical pesonality from IDENTIFYING with his or her dream personality. We can look at these two facts from another angle though, and that is in terms of the relationship between our waking and dream selves. What is the one thing that can relate our waking personality with our dream personality? That thing is MEMORY. Memory is all important in this astral projection buisness. As far as I have discovered to this point THE ONLY THING YOU CAN TAKE BACK AND FORTH BETWEEN THE PHYSICAL AND NONPHYSICAL WORLDS IS YOUR MEMORY. Look at those two facts I listed above. What do they have in common? Memory. We cannot remember our dream experiences when we are here in the physical world, nor do we remember our physical experiences when we are in the dream world. Learning to astral project will change all this for you. Here now is a very functional definition of what astral projection *really* is: ASTRAL PROJECTION IS A CONTINUITY OF MEMORY BETWEEN YOUR WAKING AND DREAM PERSONALITIES. This is a big time practical statement, folks! If you come to learn the truth of this statement by direct experience, then you *will* be a bona fide astral projector! Now, for the first time in these notes we are ready to define what an astral projection is. It is a dream, but AN ASTRAL PROJECTION IS A DREAM IN WHICH YOU ARE FULLY AWARE OF YOUR WAKING LIFE. See, the term "lucid dream" normally refers to a dream in which you are aware that you are dreaming. Well, this is fine and all, but realizing that you are dreaming doesn't mean you realize your self-identity to the same extent you do while you are awake. In a full-scale projection experience, your self-identity in the projection is identical to your self-identity when awake here in the physical world. This is what I am trying to teach you how to achieve here: how to take your waking identity into the world where dreams occur. You can call this an OOBE if you want, or an astral projection, or a lucid dream. I don't care what you call it, I only care that you understand what it is you are trying to do. And again WHAT YOU ARE TRYING TO DO IS TAKE YOUR WAKING MIND INTO THE DREAM WORLD. With this understanding you are now in a position to realize that THERE IS A SPECTRUM OF AWARENESS BETWEEN DREAMS AND ASTRAL PROJECTIONS. An astral projection is NOT a cut and dry thing. It is NOT a thing completely different from dreaming. Dreams bleed imperceptibly into astral projections. The criteria to determine if your experience is more a dream or more an astral projection is: to what extent have you brought your waking identity into the dream world? You can do this more or less. For me personally, I have conditioned myself to recognize when I am in the dream world. Once I recognize I am in the dream world, then I consider myself "lucid", and I record the experience in my astral projection journal. That is to say, I draw the line between my dreams and my astral projections when I consciously recognize I am in the dream world during a dream. Rarely, I may not even remember my name, but if I remember that I'm "in that place again", then that is my criteria to say I have had a projection (or OOBE or whatever you want to call it). When I project, I remember very cleary who I am in THIS physical world. I recognize that it is me, Don, but I realize to some extent or another that Don is no longer in the physical world. I realize that I am in some other world. To be absolutely honest with all of you, when I am in a projection I am completely amazed. That is the main thing I feel while projecting: amazement. I'm amazed that I am me, but I am not in the familiar world I know. I stand there (or float, or fly) and often, with intense curiosity just wonder where the hell I am at. It is my curiosity about where I am at that drives my behavior in my astral projections (most of the time at least). I will wander about and explore my environment. I will talk to the people I meet and ask them questions. If I see books I will try to read them (reading is actually very difficult for me in a projection). I will study where I am at as closely as I can. That is what I do in projections, and it is because it is me, Don, the guy writing these words right now, but I'm not in this world - I'm somewhere else. And it just amazes the hell out of me. Also, often in my projections, I remember what I've read in various books about astral projection and I'll try to do the things I've read about. This is one really important reason for reading as much as you can about projecting: it gives you ideas for things to do. In the next section I will offer some suggestions of what you can do once you are lucid in the dream world. To tie all this together at this point, what you are trying to accomplish is to take your waking personality into your dreams. What this means is you want to build bridges between your waking and dream personalities. Basically, anything that will help you strengthen the connection between your waking personality and your dream personality will help you become an astral projector. And, as this section of the notes is entitled "Using Dreams As A Springboard To Astral Projecting", let's now look at what you can do in this regard. Basically, all of your efforts will start with your physical personality. That is, YOU, the person reading these words, has to make the effort to break down the barrier that currently exists between you and the other you that lives in the dream world when the waking you sleeps. There is really only one being underlying these two lives, and that being is the greater "you" in which the waking and dream personalities dwell. THINGS YOU CAN DO: 1. Remember your dreams. This is really an important first step. You might want to keep a dream journal (as distinct from keeping an astral projection journal) just because of the simple fact that writting dreams down will help you remember them better. Another excersise to do is this: when you wake up in the morning, before you do anything at all, just lay there in bed, relax and try to remember as much as you can about your dreams from that night. Block out any other thoughts that come into your mind. Often when you wake up you immediately start thinking about what you are going to do that day. Well, don't do that. Block those thoughts out. Instead, just relax and concentrate on your dreams. Usually when we wake up we have at least a trace of rememberance of that night's dreams. If you just relax and focus on what little you do remember, you'll be surprised to discover that automatically you will begin to recall other parts of the dream. Both of these exercises will help strengthen the memory connection between your waking and dream personalities. This is very important, for when you start projecting, it is critical that you remember what you did during the projection once you return here to the physical plane. It's no good if you project, but forget all about your projection once your consciousness is back in the physical plane. If this happens, you've basically wasted your time. Take my word for it, it is very easy to forget your projections once you have returned back here to the physical world. It has happened to me a number of times. Above I said that once you return from a projection you will want to record what happened to you during the projection. Well, the all- important prelude to recording your projections is remembering them. If you don't remember your projections, you cannot write them down. Once you start projecting, not only do you want to get in the habit of recording your experiences, you also want to get into the habit of trying to remember your projection as completely as possible once you return to the physical plane. What will happen is that the end of your projection will be marked by you returning to your body. You will know you have returned to your body because you will feel your body lying in bed, or however your body happens to be situated. Once you feel yourself back in your body, the absolute first thing you want to do is exactly what I said to do when you wake up in the morning: relax and try to remember as much as you can about what occurred during the projection. This may take up to 5 minutes. Then, once you've remembered as much as you can, you will want to get right up and write down everything you remember. And again, just like with dreaming, if you take these first few moments to relax and try remembering your astral projection, you will be amazed at how easily you can remember what happened to you. The details of the projection will just pour into your mind. But you have to allow this to happen. If you just wake right up and make no attempt to remember, then chances are very good that you will forget many things that you could have otherwise remembered easily. Again, this is necessary disipline for being sucessful with astral projecting. I really want to stress how easy it is to forget your projections once you've returned here to the physical world. Over time, as I became better at projecting, and after having completely forgotten a few really good projections almost upon waking, I actually got into the habit of remembering my projection while I was still in it! There have been a number of times when I was projecting that I would just sit in the projection and make a mental note of everything that had happened to me up to that point in the projection with the explicit purpose of remembering it once I was back in the physical. I have even had projections where I literally wrote down what was happening to me during the projection! I'm serious about this; I would find paper and pencil in the dream world and write down what was happening to me right in the middle of my projection! Needless to say, making such effort to remember my projection while I am actually in it makes it easier to remember once I am back here in the physical world. So, this is something you may want to try once you find yourself lucid in the dream world: make very clear mental notes to yourself of what is happening to you with the explicit purpose of recording this information once you return here to the physical plane. 2. Self-conditioning excercises. There are other excercises you can do to strenghthen the memory connection between your dream and waking self. I will now discuss what I call "self-conditioning" excercises. These are very important and form the basic technique for becoming lucid in a dream. What I am about to say now are the common ideas you will find in technique books about astral projection (e.g., see Rogo, Ophiel, and Fox in the bibilography) for using dreams as a means to astral project. "Self-conditioning excercise" means you are to plant suggestions in your mind. The idea is that if you keep telling yourself these things long enough, then they will happen. There are two suggestions you want to convince yourself of: 1. You *will* become lucid in a dream. 2. You will find clues in the dream itself to trigger off your lucidity. Let's discuss each of these in turn. You must convince yourself that you will project. Only in rare cases will a person spontaneously project. For most of us, it requires a strong desire to want to achieve the projection experience for it to happen. In Rogo's book "Leaving the Body" he calls this the "Desire Method", and bases this method on ideas described in another astral projection book by a Frenchman named Yram. What this method entails is constantly desiring to astral project. You want to think about projecting as much as possible during your waking hours. You want to tell yourself such things as, "I *will* project", "I am going to learn how to project", etc. And what's more, you can't just say these things to yourself half-heartedly, you have to really work yourself up into believing these statements. You have to develop an almost stubborn persistence that, come hell or high water, you *will* project. There are two things you are doing here. First, you are admitting to yourself that astral projection is a real thing. This is very important because any scepticism you have will only prevent you from projecting. By telling yourself that astral projecting *is* possible and that you *will* do it, you are opening up the possibility in your mind. Like anything else, you have to believe a thing is possible to do it. The other thing you are doing here is mustering up the power of desire. As we all know, when we truly desire a thing, we obtain it much more readily than the things we don't care about. Desire is a very strong power in human affairs. Occultism teaches how to control desire to achieve your ends (this is also an important part of ritual magic). What you are doing by building up the desire to astral project is putting the power of desire behind your efforts. In a sense this is like a booster rocket on a space ship. Desire adds extra power to your attempts to project. Desiring to really achieve a projection can make the difference between being successful or being unsuccessful in your attempts to project. I know the truth of this from personal experience. In my own case, during the times I have projected the most frequently, I had an almost one track mind. All I would think about was projecting. During the day I would read as many books as I could find about projecting and just desire more than anything else in the world to project. As I would go off to sleep at night (or when I would take a nap during the day) I would think about nothing but desiring to leave my body as I fell off to sleep. I hate to say it, but you just won't be able to astral project if you have a half-ass attitude about it. Astral projecting is not achieved by the half-hearted or the casual. Along with practicing the right exercises and developing the right attitudes and understanding, you have to *really* want to achieve the experience. I can say with much certainty that the stronger your will to achieve a projection, the more likely you will actually project. Now, let's consider the second suggestion you want to plant in your mind: You will find clues in the dream itself to trigger off your lucidity. This is the heart and soul of using dreams as a means to astral project. Again, this idea is taught in many books that explain how to astral project. The essence of this idea is as follows. We all know that things occur in dreams that are absolutely impossible in our waking life. It could be anything: maybe in your dream you know some- one who you do not know in physical life. Maybe you are in a familiar environment in your dream, but things are out of place. For example, you may be in your house in your dream, but the furniture is different in the dream, or there is something obviously different about your house in your dream. Or it may be something even more spectacular. Maybe in your dream you are seeing animals fly - or even talk! Or you are seeing something occur in your dream that is simply impossible as far as physical life goes. Now, here's the trick: YOU WANT TO CONDITION YOURSELF SUCH THAT, WHEN YOU SEE ODD THINGS OCCURRING IN DREAMS, YOU WILL USE THESE ODD CIRCUMSTANCES AS A TRIGGER TO TELL YOU THAT YOU ARE IN THE DREAM WORLD. Again, you have to think of your normal dreams and the fact that in your normal dreams, these odd circumstances usually do not even phase you. You need to begin by *remembering* these odd occurrences from your dreams. I'm sure all of you can think of something odd you saw in a dream that didn't phase you at all. As you remember such weird dream events, think to yourself, "the next time I see something like that happening in a dream, I will become aware that I am dreaming". If you work on this over and over, eventually it will happen: you will be in a dream, see something weird that could never happen in your waking life, and all of a sudden realize that you are dreaming. When this actually happens, it is possible that you may actually *feel* something happen to you in the dream. For example, we all know the feeling you get when you have been sitting in a chair for a long time and then quickly get up. You experience a "headrush", where your skin becomes tingly, your vision may even disappear for an instant, and you hear a whoshing sound in your ears. On many occasions, when I have become lucid during a dream, I feel this exact sensation. I don't have the slightest idea why this happens, but it happens to me fairly regularly. Another thing that may happen the first few times you recognize that you are in a dream is that you might wake up! You will see something weird going on in your dream, this will trigger you to become lucid, and all of a sudden you are awake lying in your bed! If this happens, don't become discouraged. This is very likely to occur to most of you. It is not bad when this happens, it is good. It is a sure-fire sign that you had your waking mind in the dream world, even if it was only for an instant. I have discovered that it is like a balancing act keeping your waking mind in the dream world. In a sense, your waking mind is "heavier" than your dream mind. I don't know how else to say this so just bear with me. Your dream mind is much more nimble at being in the dream world, which only makes sense. When you take your waking mind into the dream world, it is like trying to balance a quarter on the head of a pin. The slightest disturbance can cause your waking consciousness to fade out of the dream world. It will take some practice to get used to having your waking mind in the dream world. I mentioned lockmolds above, and this is what the lockmold is all about; keeping the right balance that allows your waking mind to stay in the dream world for any amount of time. Finally, it is very possible that the first time you become lucid in a dream (i.e. bring your waking mind into the dream world) that you will be perfectly stable. In this case YOU'RE THERE!! You made it! You are astral projecting. What to do at this point will be the subject of the next main section of these notes. So, to wrap up this section on using dreams as a springboard for astral projecting, I will summarize the key points of this section and as well assign you specific exercises to do. In summary, these are the key points of this section: A. You have to change your ideas about what your dreams are. You have to learn to accept dreams as a real and valid part of your experience as a living being. B. You need to start a journal of your experiences. If you want to have one journal for recording both dreams and astral projections, that is fine. If you want a separate journal for each, that is fine too. What ever you decide, you have to start writing down your experiences in the dream world. C. You have to appreciate that dreams and astral projections form a continous spectrum of states of consciousness. A dream is when you are oblivious to your life here in the physical plane, an astral projection is a dream in which you are highly conscious of your life here in the physical plane. Your consciousness can be anywhere between these two extremes in actual practice. D. You need to strenthen your ability to remember what happens to you during dreams. This means you have to use your memory as a BRIDGE between your waking and dreaming experiences. E. The more desire you have to project, the more likely it is that you *will* project. F. You want to condition yourself to recognize when you are dreaming. This is most easily accomplished using the strange and weird events that occur in dreams as a trigger to becoming aware that you are in the dream world. Finally, to end this section, here is a list of exercises: 1. When you wake up in the morning, before you think of anything else, try to remember as much about your dreams as you can. 2. Write down everything you remember about your dreams. 3. Write down a list of all the weird things you've seen happen in your dreams. (Not necessarily based on what you do for exercises 1 and 2, but write down *any* weird dream occurrences you remember. Don't forget, any "weird" dream occurrence is something that cannot happen, or is different from the way things are, in your physical life). 4. Throughout the day, stop and be aware of yourself. Think of who you are, where you live, and where you are at (i.e. home, school, work, etc.). When you do this, tell yourself you are going to do the exact same thing when you are dreaming. Do this as often as you can throughout the day. 5. When you go to sleep at night, meditate on the following thought: "Tonight I will become aware that I am dreaming while I am dreaming. If I see anything weird happening in my dreams, then I will become aware that I am dreaming". If you do these exercises, as well as the other exercises mentioned throughout the text, you will greatly enhance your chances of having an OOBE. ------------------------------------------------------------------- END OF FILE 4

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