A Beginner’s Guide to the Out-of-Body Experience, Including First-Hand Accounts and Comprehensive Theory and Methods
by Darryl E Berry Jr
7 – BASIC THEORY OF PRACTICE
An altered state is a state of consciousness different from our full-waking, standard, physical world awareness. An altered state usually entails a slowing down of the brain wave frequencies; with conscious awareness held intact. A word I coined for the practice and process of consciously entering altered states is state acquisition. State acquisition usually includes the application of relaxation, mediation, visualization, and/or concentration techniques. At the deepest end of the altered state spectrum is the home of the out-of-body experience, the delta brain wave state. The biggest difference between normal sleep and an altered state is that with altered states conscious awareness remains intact.
One popular phrase for the altered state is “mind awake, body asleep.” A deep altered state combined with deep physical relaxation is the prime state for producing the out-of-body experience. Thus, first over the next three chapters I’ll discuss altered states in detail, as well as relevant fundamental practices and exercises, and then we’ll get into how to apply state acquisition to generate the out-of-body experience.
Progress at state acquisition (and thus out-of-body skill) usually requires relaxed determination. Dogged focus can work, as demonstrated with my use of intense concentration to initiate experiences, but the forced progression through the states can also be counterproductive to physical and psychological relaxation. I have found that a relaxed determination provides a more gradual and gentle entry into altered states, while allowing for a more relaxed general disposition. My most seamless and controlled entries into the out-of-body experience have been through progressively reaching a deep altered state and then initiating or intending movement into an out-of-body experience.
The consciousness spectrum that we experience has been divided into five basic strata, according to the frequency of brain waves we experience. Four are standard, and one is more eccentric:
Our normal waking state has been called beta, a slightly slower brain wave frequency is the lightly relaxed alpha, slower still is the deeply relaxed or deeply meditative theta, and deep sleep, very deep meditation, or the out-of-body experience is the very slow brain wave frequency of delta. I’ve also come across mention of a brain wave frequency state even faster than beta, called gamma. Some time ago I heard someone interviewed on gamma, a man who if I recall had some sort of brain anomaly that allowed his brain waves to operate at an accelerated frequency. His brain waves would just cycle faster for a time; I don’t remember him having any special ability or perception with the experience. I’ve also found a research study where it was discovered that objectless meditation, meditation that doesn’t have an object of focus but instead works on developing the essence of a state such as a state of non-directed universal compassion, causes gamma brain waves. Since our focus is on the out-of-body experience we’ll be dealing with practices to help facilitate the conscious entry into deep theta and ultimately delta.
Perceptions in altered states include perception of things not visible to the physical eye. When a person is wide awake and perceiving energy, auras, nonphysical entities, cloaked or dimensionally shifted extraterrestrial craft, and other-dimensional worlds, or performing psychic feats such as telekinesis, then even while in the beta state they are overlapping into the other brain wave states. There is an intertwining of beta waking-state physical world data with altered-state data and abilities. Such skill is utilized in remove viewing, where practitioners use their inner vision or clairvoyance (theta) to see distant scenes and draw or write down their perceptions and experiences as they are doing so (beta). At more advanced skill levels, it’s possible to overlap the waking state (beta) and the deep sleep state (delta) and be actively in the physical body state and the out-of-body state simultaneously, as demonstrated with my Source experience where I simultaneously nonphysically floated before The Source and physically wiped tears from my eyes.
The ability to enter and overlap waking and altered states is also behind the ability to consciously perceive, interact with, and recall interactions with physical extraterrestrials. Most visiting ETs operate at our brain wave levels of alpha and theta. Being in their presence shifts us into these states. This is partly why ET contact and UFO sightings can often be dreamy or surreal. This explains “missing time” – being unable to consciously access altered states most people are unable to consciously remember experiences had in altered states. Recall my experience with forgetting Okanos’ name when I came out of the altered state, until I developed enough flexibility of consciousness to remember the information in my beta waking state. As we become more and more active in altered states our base state of consciousness will also shift to the alpha or theta range.
Practicing altered states also spills over into the idea of bringing more of the unconscious mind into conscious awareness and use. These deeper states are a way to access what we call the unconscious, the reservoir of memories, perceptions, and abilities that are shelved into the depths of our psyches. This includes the idea of using “more” of the brain. We can learn to consciously maneuver altered states and accept more of our potential, consciously accessing more of our experiences, and utilizing more of our capabilities. To delve into metaphysical development is to reclassify more and more of this ignored reservoir as conscious, relevant, and useful.
Through the out-of-body experience and altered states, rather than relying solely upon physical world sources for information, we can learn more directly. “If the public only knows what they’re told, then it’s pretty hard for them to come to any conclusions other than what the powers that be want them to.” The out-of-body experience and altered states are a way to access information free of external filtering. I know there is life after death, and I know there is extraterrestrial life, for I have observed and experienced it directly. My karate teacher learned his entire karate system through “dreams.” He was taught by a nonphysical entity. Several famous scientists and inventors, such as David Adair, and Stephen Hawking (according to David Adair), have learned formulas and ideas through “dreams.” I imagine there is no fact or information outside of our ability to acquire through altered states.
PROGRESSION MARKER LIST
During altered states several phenomena are experienced. Here is a general order of progression marked by the altered state phenomena usually experienced (with physical eyes closed) in each state. You’ll find the listed progression of phenomena very comprehensive. The markers are arranged on a progressive scale of twelve denominations, each brain wave state broken down into three subsections of light, full, and deep. Note that some phenomenon is in the transition between brain wave states, so for example phenomenon listed as deep theta may also be experienced in light delta and vice versa.
Beta is physical wakefulness and is the reverse of the other states as far as the designation of “depth” goes. If you’re in “deep” beta you are wide awake and intently focused on physical reality. Full beta is to be generally wide awake and functioning in the here and now of the four-dimensional physical world (height, width, depth, time), for instance being active in the physical world after a full night’s sleep. In “light” beta one may be less focused but still primarily focused in the physical, for instance towards the end of a long day.
Alpha is a state of light relaxation. It’s a good state for thinking and contemplation. In light alpha monotone colored shapes of light (for me usually a pale yellow) can be seen. This can be in the form of a field of dots, amorphous shapes or globules, or as full alpha approaches various static or animated patterns. A common animated pattern for me is a pale-yellowish dot with pale-yellowish circles continuously radiating outward away from it.
In full alpha you may also experience a quieter mind or an increased fluidity of thoughts and thinking. You may also experience automatic mind chatter. In deep alpha you may experience faint vibrations in the body – localized or full-body.
Theta is a state of meditation and reverie. In light theta you may experience multi-colored lights, shapes, forms, scenery, faces, or any type of multi-color visual imagery; usually in brief flashes and limited to part of the visual field. Any type of multi-colored visual phenomena, however brief or partial, signals theta for the duration of the multi-colored visual imagery. You may enter alpha, see a flash of theta, and then go back into alpha.
In full theta you may experience various pronounced energetic sensations: tingling, prickling, and various other sensations. It can feel like prickly energy, static electricity, or as if insects are crawling across the skin, spider webs are strewn upon the skin, or as if water is flowing through or under the skin. Such sensations are due both to the increased flow of energy in altered states and the increased ability to perceive energy due to the altered state. Chakra energy centers, such as the third eye (the area between the eye brows) may tingle as well. Some energetic phenomenon can bring a sense of stark physical discomfort and perceived need to physically move – and it is fine to do so and then continue with your practice. With continued practice any discomfort will diminish or can more easily be ignored should you choose to ignore it. You will also experience more pronounced visual imagery, either in more detail or longer than a flash. It will cover more of your visual field or be full screen.
In deep theta you may experience very strong vibrations – localized or full-body, but strong; like rapid shaking, or as if holding an electric razor, or being jolted with an electric current. This may be accompanied by various noises or sounds like rumbling, bangs, clicks, wind roaring, crackling, or engine/turbine like sounds. Sounds may even cause tactile responses, for instance the bang of a gun-like sound may cause vibrations or shaking in unison with the sound. In deep theta you experience full screen multi-colored visual imagery, like watching a full screen movie. Focus must be maintained so that you are not lost in reverie which will result in falling into a normal unconscious dream state. You can also experience seeing or perceiving as if through the physical eyelids, into local or distant surroundings. You may also hear voices, environmental sounds, or various human/animal sounds; conversation and noises not related to the physical environment. In deep theta you may also experience rapid eye movement or REM sleep – it feels like your eyes are rapidly moving behind your eyelids. Deep theta is the edge of the out-of-body state; a sufficient state to relax and move or intend into an OBE.
Delta is the state of deep physical sleep, and home to the out-of-body experience. In light delta you may experience very pronounced tactile sensations – experiences of being poked, grabbed, pushed, prodded, or pulled. These won’t be physical in nature, but nonphysical in origin, though they can seem quite physical. Making sure doors are locked, pets are secured, and so forth, can help eliminate mistaking such occurrences to be physical. In full delta you may experience numbness and heaviness of the physical body. You may also experience extremely strong and pronounced energetic sensations. This can vary widely, including sensations of roaming points or balls of energy. You may be vibrating so strongly that you wonder how you’re being held together. In full delta you may also experience partial spontaneous nonphysical movement, for instance a nonphysical arm or leg floating off the bed.
In deep delta you are in an OBE. In deep delta you may experience fully immersive imagery as if in a virtual reality movie. Focus must be maintained so that you don’t fall into the immersive reverie which also amounts to being caught in a dream. You may try to move in the reverie but notice that your limbs are not working properly. This is because your physical body is asleep and your nonphysical limbs are still aligned with your physical body and can’t move freely, and the movement in the reverie is just that, like a daydream.
A well-known deep delta experience is total paralysis; the absolute inability to move. This is a common occurrence when going into or waking up from sleep. The paralysis state is often accompanied by a related dream such as being held down or covered in some way. You may experience a feeling that something heavy is on your chest, or that your breathing is impeded – the nonphysical body doesn’t need to breathe air. In deep delta you may also experience deep darkness/blackness or void, lucid dreaming (awareness amid a normal nocturnal dream), or various full-body nonphysical movements such as sinking, rising, spinning, or floating.
In deep delta you may suddenly become aware in the out-of-body experience state, removed near or far from your physical body, in physical-like or otherworldly dimensions. You may also clearly sense or perceive nonphysical or trans-dimensional entities in the vicinity, including nonphysical dwellers, other travelers, deceased relatives, extraterrestrials, interdimensionals, spirit guides, nonphysical shapes and objects, and nonphysical animals.
FLEXIBILITY OF CONSCIOUSNESS
Fundamental to achieving the out-of-body state is the ability to remain consciously aware during states that you have normally been unconscious in. Whereas before you would lose awareness and enter unconscious sleep you train to remain conscious during alpha, theta, and delta. As you practice regularly, you’ll find that you consistently progress more consciously through deeper altered states. For instance, at first you may experience almost nothing, or a few things from alpha, before losing awareness. As you continue to practice regularly, you’ll notice more and more things of deeper alpha, and then light theta. Then you’ll consistently hit full theta, and so on. Simply keep practicing patiently and consistently as I’ll outline in the Developmental Basics, Practical Considerations, and Practicing OBE chapters and you will progress.
As you practice, be aware of the depth of state at which you lose awareness. That point is your current awareness threshold, the depth to which you can keep your conscious awareness intact. The general goal is to consistently practice so that you move this threshold of awareness back further and further, until you can be aware at least through the deep theta state. From there you can initiate an OBE. Eventually, with continued practice, the awareness threshold pushes back far enough and sure that we remain fully conscious 24 hours a day. Your body may sleep, but your mind remains aware. Days and nights blend into a surreal, dreamlike, continuous reality. I reached this level during a period of frequent and regular practice during my early teens.
When I reached this point, I wasn’t ready for it, and discontinued practicing for a time so that a divide between waking and sleeping could reestablish itself. Recall my desert world experience in which I spent so much “time” in this otherworldly reality that when I got back to this reality, this reality seemed to be the dream. It reminds me of Bruce Moen, who began to frequently engage nonphysical realities to the point that he could no longer tell the difference between physical and nonphysical realities. He almost physically drove his beta world physical car (and body!) off a cliff, thinking it was a dream. He could no longer tell if he was lucid dreaming or in the physical world. Thus as you advance, if you develop to this point, be sure to be very conscious of which dimension you are in. Test your state by jumping up and down, not by jumping off a cliff. I think with patient progress and open-mindedness to unfamiliar perspectives this waking world / sleeping world divide can be permanently abandoned by anyone.
See-sawing through the states throughout the day is very effective in developing flexibility of consciousness. The more dispersed are your movements through the states the easier it will be to move through the states. What I mean is, if your only dips into delta are during the night’s sleep you may find it harder to remain aware during delta than if you dipped into delta a few times during the daytime as well. If throughout the day and night you regularly intersperse altered state practices with periods of wakefulness you can more easily move through the states in a conscious way and at will.
Flexibility of consciousness requires some degree of withdrawal from heavy investment in the four-dimensional physical world of beta. Each state acquisition practice and OBE session is effectively some degree of conscious withdrawal from the physical beta frequency of reality into other dimensions and frequencies of reality. I remember at times not wanting to sleep, being so anxious to not miss something in the physical world. As you can imagine during such periods of time, I didn’t experience much other-dimensional activity. My attention was too focused into the physical world. But at other times I was so anxious to go flying that I couldn’t wait to sleep. I was home and ready for sleep early, mentally free of physical concerns or distractions, anxious to focus on engaging the nonphysical. As you can imagine my success rate at accessing other-dimensional awareness was quite high during such times.
A beta-dominant reality focus is a tight, addictive focus that precludes awareness of other realities. The ideal is to balance the states, for example using our body’s rhythms as cues. When wide awake engage the physical world. When drowsy or sleepy engage the nonphysical world. If you find yourself fighting sleep to stay active physically, you’re over-pushing beta focus and unbalancing yourself. If you find yourself fighting wakefulness to stay asleep or to practice more, you’re over pushing altered state focus and unbalancing yourself. A balanced, receptive approach is easy and natural. Ideally each brain wave state is to become as conscious and as natural as every other.
We have discussed the ability to overlap different altered states. Thomas Campbell calls this “parallel processing.” Tom and several other participants of experiments with Robert Monroe experienced being able to fully engage the out-of-body experience while being able to simultaneously engage the physical – in their case physically dictating their out-of-body experiences into a microphone suspended over their physical mouths. Bruce Moen would be able to sit at a counter and drink coffee while also exploring nonphysical worlds. Robert Bruce experienced confronting himself during the OBE state, his nonphysical self entering the room while his physical self was still sitting in trance. I experienced being with The Source, bathing in its high frequency radiation, while simultaneously wiping tears from my physical eyes. Robert Monroe (in the nonphysical realms after his death) is reported by Bruce Moen as able to duplicate himself and interact with several out-of-body explorers simultaneously. So, with continued practice the flexibility and fluidity of consciousness continually expands.