This information is taken directly from the book Journeys Out of the Body by Robert A. Mon

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<-------------------------------------------------------------------> <___Astral Projection__Part I_>< Brought to you by:_________________> <___Preliminary Exercises_____><_______Arkham Asylum________________> <___By: The Joker_____________><_______(302)-629-5537_______________> <___& The Occult Crue_________><______65 Megz_24oo Baud_____________> <-------------------------------------------------------------------> This information is taken directly from the book Journeys Out of the Body by Robert A. Monroe. Throughout this writing, I have made many references to one evident fact: the only possible way for an individual to appreciate the reality of this Second Body and existence within it is to experience it himself. Obviously, if this were an easy task, it would now be commonplace. I suspect that only an innate curiosity will enable people to overcome the obstacles in the path of this achievement. Although there are many cases of existence experienced apart from the physical body, they have for the most part - at least in the Western world - been of a spontaneous, one time nature, occurring during moments of stress or physical disability. We are speaking of something entirely different, which can be objectively investigated. The experimenter will want to proceed in a manner that will produce consistent results, perhaps not every time, but often enough to validate the evidence to his own satisfaction. I believe that anyone can experience existence in a Second Body if the desire is great enough. Whether or not anyone should is beyond the scope of my judgment. Evidence has led me to believe that most, if not all, human beings leave their physical bodies in varying degrees during sleep. Subsequent reading has proved that this idea is thousands of years old in man's history. If it is a valid premise, then the condition itself is not unnatural. On the other hand, conscious, willful practice of separation from the physical is contrary to the pattern, it would seem, in view of the limited data available. Harmful physical effects from such activity are undetermined. I have not detected (nor have any physicians) any physiological changes, good or bad, that can be attributed directly to the out-of-the-body experience. There have been many psychological changes that I recognize, and probably many more that I have not been aware of. However, even my friends in the psychiatric profession have not claimed that these have been detrimental. My gradual revision of basic concepts and believes is apparent in a number of ways throughout this writing. If these psychological and personality changes are truly harmful, there is not much that can be done about it now. A note of caution is in order here for those who are interested in experimenting, for once opened, the doorway to this experience cannot be closed. More exactly, it is a copy of "you can't live with it and you can't live without it." The activity and resultant awareness are quite incompatible with the science, religion, and mores of the society in which we live. History is strewn with martyrs whose only crime was non-conformity. If your interest and research become commonly known, you run the risk of being labeled a freak, phony, or worse, and of being ostracized. In spite of this, something extremely vital would be missing if you did not continue to explore and investigate. In the unaccountable "low" periods when you cannot produce this activity no matter how carefully you try, you realize this deeply. You have a strong sense of being left out of things, of the shutting out of a source of great meaning to living. Here, then, is the best written description I can give of the technique of developing the non-physical experience. THE FEAR BARRIER There is one great obstacle to the investigation of the Second Body and the environment in which it operates. Perhaps it is the only major barrier. It seems to be present in all people, without exception. It may be hidden by layers of inhibition and conditioning, but when these are stripped away, the obstacle remains. This is the barrier of blind, unreasoning fear. Given only small impetus, it turns to panic, and then to terror. If you consciously pass the fear barrier, you will have passed a milestone in your investigation. I am reasonably sure that this barrier is passed unconsciously by many of us each night. When that part of us beyond our consciousness takes over, it is not inhibited by fear, although it seems to be influenced by the thought and action of the conscious mind. It seems to be accustomed to operating beyond the fear barrier, and understands better the rules of existence in this other world. When the conscious mind shuts down for the night, this Super Mind (soul?) takes over. The investigative process relative to the Second Body and its environment appears to be a melding or blending of the conscious with this Super Mind. If this is accomplished, the fear barrier is overcome. The fear barrier is many-faceted. The most fearless of us think it does not exist, until, much to our own surprise, we encounter it within ourselves. First and foremost, there is the death fear. Because separation from the physical body is much like what is expected at death, early reactions to the experience are automatic. You think, "Get back in the physical, quickly! You are dying! Life is there, in the physical; get back in!" These reactions appear in spite of any intellectual or emotional training. Only after repeating the process eighteen to twenty times did I finally gather enough courage (and curiosity) to stay out more than a few seconds and observe objectively. The death fear was either sublimated or assuaged by familiarity. Others who have tried the technique have stopped after the first or second experience, unable to suppress this first aspect of the barrier. The second aspect of the fear barrier is also linked with the death fear: will I be able to return to the physical or to get back "in." With no guidelines or specific instructions, this remained a prime fear of mine for several years, until I found a simple answer that made it work every time. Mine was a matter of rationalization. I had been "out" several hundred times, and the evidence showed that I was able to return safely one way or another. Therefore, the probability was that I would return safely the next time also. The third basic fear was fear of the unknown. The rules and dangers of our physical environment can be determined to a reasonable degree. We have spent our lifetime building up reflexes to cope with them. Now, suddenly, here is another, completely different set of rules, another world of entirely different possibilities, populated by beings who seem to know all of them. You have no rule book, no road map, no book of etiquette, no applicable courses in physics and chemistry, no incontrovertible authority you can turn to for advice and answers. Many a missionary has been killed in a remote land under just such conditions! I must confess that this third fear still crops up, and with justification. The unknown is still to a great degree unknown. Such penetration as I have made has brought forth pitifully few unalterable and consistent rules. I can say only that, to date, I have survived these expeditions. There is so much that I do not comprehend or understand, and more that is beyond my ability to do so. Another fear is the consequent effects on the physical body as well as on the conscious mind of participation and experimentation in this form of activity. This too is very real, as our history, at least to my knowledge, does not seem to contain accurate reporting of this area. We have studies on paranoia, schizophrenia, phobias, epilepsy, alcoholism, sleeping sickness, acne, virus diseases, etc., but no assembled body of objective data on the pathology of the Second Body. I do not know how to circumvent the fear barrier, except by cautious initial steps that create familiarity bit by bit as you proceed. I hope this writing in its entirety will provide the psychological "step" over the barrier. It may help to recognize conditions and patterns that are familiar in that at least one person has had similar experiences and survived. The following are the necessary procedural developments. 1. RELAXATION The ability to relax is the first prerequisite, perhaps even the first step itself. It is deliberately generated, and is both physical and metal. Included with the condition of relaxation must be the relief from any sense of time urgency. You cannot be in a hurry. No pending appointments or anticipated calls for your services or attention must clutter up your thoughts. Impatience of any sort can effectively stifle your prospects for success. There are many techniques available for obtaining this kind of relaxation, and a number of good books cover the subject. Simply select the method that works best for you. There are three general methods that seem to work, two of which are applicable in these exercises. Auto- or self-hypnosis. Most self-study books offer this method in different versions. Again, it is a matter of which is most effective for you individually. The most efficient and speediest way is to learn self-hypnosis through the training of an experienced hypnotist. He can set up posthypnotic suggestion that will bring immediate results. However, select a tutor with care. Responsible practitioners are rare, and neophytes numerous. Forms of meditation can be converted to effective relaxation. Borderland sleep state. This is perhaps the easiest and most natural method and usually ensures relaxation of both body and mind simultaneously. The difficulty here lies in the maintenance of that delicate "edge" between sleep and complete wakefulness. All too often, you simply fall asleep and that ends the experiment for the moment. By practice, conscious awareness can be taken up to this borderland state, into it, and through it, to your destination. There is no way to achieve it that I know of that than practice. The technique is as follows: lie down, preferably when you are tired and sleepy. As you become relaxed and start to drift off to sleep, hold your mental attention on something, anything, with your eyes closed. Once you can hold the borderland state indefinitely without falling asleep, you have passed the first stage. It is, however, a normal pattern to fall asleep many times in the process of this consciousness deepening. You will not be able to help yourself, but do not let this discourage you. It is not an overnight process. You will know you are successful when you become bored and expect something more to happen! If attempts to remain at the borderland state make you nervous, this too is a normal reaction. The conscious mind seems to resent sharing the authority it has during wakefulness. If this occurs, break the relaxation, get up and walk around, exercise, and lie down again. If this does not relieve the nervousness, go to sleep and try another time. You are just not in the mood. When your "fixative," the picture thought you have been holding, slips away and you find yourself thinking of something else, you are close to completion of condition A. Once you have achieved Condition A - the ability to hold calmly in the borderland state indefinitely with your mind on an exclusive thought - you are ready for the next step. Condition B is similar, but with the concentration eliminated. Do not think of anything, but remain poised between wakefulness and sleep. Simply look through your closed eyes at the blackness ahead of you. Do nothing more. After a number of these exercises, you may hallucinate "mind pictures," or light patterns. These seem to have no great significance, and may merely be forms of neural discharge. I can remember, for example, attempting to achieve this state after watching a football game on TV for several hours. All I saw were mind pictures of football players tackling, running, passing, etc. It took at least a half hour for the pattern to fade away. These mind pictures are apparently related to your visual concentration in the preceding eight or ten hours. The more intense the concentration, the longer it seems to take to eliminate the impressions. You have accomplished Condition B when you are able to lie indefinitely after the impressions have faded away, with no nervousness, and seeing nothing but blackness. Condition C is a systematic deepening of consciousness while in the B state. This is approached by carefully letting go of your rigid hold on the borderland sleep edge and drifting deeper little by little during each exercise. You will learn to establish degrees of this deepening of consciousness by "going down" to a given level and returning at will. You will recognize these degrees by the shutting down of various sensory mechanism inputs. The sense of touch apparently goes first. You seem to have no feeling in any part of your body. Smell and taste soon follow. The auditory signals are next, and the last to fade out is vision. (Sometimes the last two are reversed; I suspect that the reason for vision being last is that exercises calls for the use of the visual network, even in blackness.) Condition D is the achievement of C when one is fully rested and refreshed, rather than tired and sleepy, at the beginning of the exercise. This is quite important, and not nearly as easy to achieve as it is to write about. To enter the relaxation state full of energy and wakefulness is great insurance for maintaining conscious control. The best approach to take in the early attempts at the Condition D exercise is to start it immediately after you wake up from a nap or a night's sleep. Start the exercise before you move around in bed physically, while your body is still relaxed from sleep and your mind is fully alert. Don't take too many liquids before sleeping, and you won't have the immediate need to empty your bladder upon awakening. Induction by drugs. None of the relaxation-producing drugs that are readily available seem to help. Barbiturates

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