RTZ interference

Today I had an OBE during my lunch break. For the sake of illustration I will briefly explain how it came about. I decided to lay down for a little bit at the office during my lunch break hour and after a little while I fell half-asleep and had a false awakening (I guess I was anxious about oversleeping), and when I realized that it had happened, almost waking up for real, I mentally told myself: “next time I wake up, I’m going to walk through the closed door” in preparation for the next false awakening, sure it that it could come.

And so I “woke up” again, and with the realization that I was not awake, but lucid, I snapped back to my paralyzed body. A side note here: I know my body was paralyzed because I’ve had this experience before, but I also know that if I had tested whether it was or not, I would have instantly become “trapped” trying to move my body and would have ruined the experience. A humble tip to those who still struggle with this (like we all do from time to time), is to notice how that state feels besides the fact that your body is paralyzed and learn to recognize it without testing whether you can move. As soon as you start ignoring the fact that your physical body is paralyzed, you might start to unconsciously focus on your non-physical body instead and this state will become nothing else than another milestone you may or may not notice in your way out of your body.

In any case, as soon as I passed the “paralysis” phase, I was able to move out of my body. I rolled to the floor, tentatively dragged myself out of the couch, fearing I would twitch my physical body and wake up, but in the end I simply stood up, always in total darkness. For some reason I get this a lot, and the only thing I can do about it is get away from my physical body to gain “sight”. If I try to “open my eyes”, I open my physical ones instead…

As this OBE was not planned in the best conditions, I was laying on my side the whole time, and the weight of my own body on that side was actually noticeable out of body from time to time. There was also a lot of light in the room and I sometimes got interference from my eyes (also some sounds from time to time).

In my experience, this kind of interference helps me attain the right state in order to OBE. If I’m in total darkness and silence, laying perfectly still in my bed, I might get perfectly clear experiences, but those are rare, as I frequently fall in a deep sleep instead. On the other hand, once the experience has started, the interference is obviously detrimental as sensory data gets mixed in.

I once read it’s good practice to have clear goals before trying to go out of body. It is true that in this particular experience, once I got out and away from my body, I found myself in the street constantly distracted by what was going on around me. I visited a couple of nearby locations just because something or someone picked my interest. I felt myself losing focus and conjuring dreamscapes a couple of times and had to refocus. All in all the only “productive” thing I did while OBEing was making a mental note to go to the Astral Pulse forums and ask about this while wandering the streets.

Part of the problem was again the interference. Specially sound from the physical “spawned” mental images that kept intruding my non-physical environment (through the process of making me think about what they were, and thus subsequently making them “real”). This had the effect of me being unable to get out of the RTZ without risking transitioning into a dream.

While writing this and re-reading passages, I noticed how different it all sounds in comparison with the real experience. This is specially true in regards to the first bit about paralysis, which I intend to give as an example case for anyone who might be trying to get their first OBE. It might be possible that my experiences start in a somewhat chaotic way, they sure do feel that way, but trying to explain an experience as detached to the physical and even mental world of our everyday life as this one is much harder than it seems. I guess language is not really suited for this. Or I haven’t found the way to explain myself. In any case, I’m sure the only people to whom I can get my point across is those who have similar experiences, rather than the people for whom I’m speaking.

What I’m trying to say is that all this feels and “is” incredibly simple, but trying to explain it to someone that has not experienced it or may have experienced it in a different way is the real challenge. And in the same way, trying to understand what all this babble really means is really difficult. At least it was for me when I started reading about OBEs, projections and all that.

I’ve recently started practicing martial arts again. One of the side-effects of learning to make my body and my mind work together is that I find it much easier to control my thoughts and actions while out of body. I guess any kind of sport or exercise that requires mind-body coordination would be equally beneficial.

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It’s been a while

Some time back I moved. I changed home. Luckily I brought with me my trusty couch, one in which I’ve had many pleasant naps. One in which I’ve had a fair amount of OBEs.

It was the middle of afternoon, and the sky glowed with that reassuring yellow that tells you on a Sunday that time has indeed stopped, and it is yours to do what you please. So I slept, deeply.

Shortly after loosing consciousness I found myself unexpectedly regaining it, lying down but with no body, and I immediately knew I was out. I put my “feet” on the ground and examined my surroundings.

I must say, despite having moved in less than a month before, my brain had captured the RTZ pretty well. Or maybe the RTZ is actually perceived in real-time by your astral “senses” (I still believe it is but a construct of one’s mind), but I don’t really care. I was really glad I still had the ability to get out so easily without even trying.

I looked around, and found nothing weird (didn’t try to look at my body this time, didn’t even remember), so I decided to go for the window, hoping to be transported somewhere “within”. Unfortunately I fell, landing on a plaza. Rapidly and unexpectedly, I lost all lucidity and I became an angel, and engaged in an epic fight with another incredibly powerful being. What the fuck?

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The RTZ that won’t go

It’s not easy to rely on external stimuli to get your consciousness awake in the middle of city noon. It’s not reliable to go OBE with your eyes fully open and plenty of people talking behind the walls. But hey, for me all that is one of the few 100% sure ways to get a ‘mind awake, body asleep’ state. Although it’s pretty difficult to maintain.

I intentionally sleep in. It’s way past the time I’m supposed to have gotten up, but I still hope for some sleep paralysis. And here it comes.

The feeling that precedes it is familiar. I start to lose the sense of vision. My eyes are open an can still see, but my brain stops processing the shapes and colours into something recognisable. As a result everything seems to get blurry.

At first I doubt. The feeling of helplessness that comes with SP is certainly not a comfortable one, but it’s been a while since I last went out and this is the only way I know to do it for sure. Before I can decide what to do, I hear a voice: “don’t you wanna see my pointy ears?”

Feeling too vulnerable to ascertain that this dweller is a product of my mind, I settle with a quick thought: “you are my friend”. The voice disappears and I relax. I can feel I’m able to move my arms. I put them in front of my eyes and don’t see them, so I get up in a perfect, inertia-less fashion.

I see myself in the mirror. I’m nude… and in perfect physical shape, fit as I’ve never been. Oh well, that’s what Morpheus called a ‘residual self-image’. I wonder what’s wrong with my physical body.

This time I don’t want RTZ. RTZ is all I have achieved so far in a fully conscious and voluntary OBE. This time I want the real thing, just like the ones that happen involuntarily in the middle of the night.

I can still see the light coming from outside the window, blurry. My point of view is fixed because my physical eyes are open and seeing, but I can feel my way around the room. I need to get out before I snap back to my body.

For some reason I can’t get through the wall, so I go for the door. The moment I get to the corridor I am finally able to ‘see’, and ‘move’ my ‘head’, but I’m still at home. This is still RTZ. I can still hear the same noises I heard before going out, and the image my real eyes are perceiving is still superimposed in top of everything. I head for the front door.

The moment I get to the stairs, the noises disappear, and my brain finally discards that burned out image of a window. Or perhaps I closed my eyes. I don’t care.

As to celebrate my newly gained freedom I go down the stairs with impossible acrobatics, but I forgot something. I set out without an objective! I was so anxious for an OBE that I forgot what OBEs are about. The stairs get infinitely and ridiculously long, everything starts to get dreamy… And I lose it. I snap back to my body with a violent shake.

I need to do this at night… somehow.

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Still exploring the RTZ

After a rather rich and complex dreaming early in the evening, I found myself struggling against sleep paralysis within my dreams. I noticed it shortly afterwards and stopped fighting it, instead trying to embracing it.

As the times before this,  I was able to move my non-physical body short after that. I tried to sit on the bed, but as if I could not control my muscles properly I did not bend my body enough and ended up laying on my left side, watching my feet strobe ghostly in the dark. Surprised I noticed that even though I knew I was not using my real eyes, my surroundings were dark and almost colourless. I could see well though.

I regained control of my body and stood on my feet. Turned around to see my body (as I hadn’t been able to do so yet), and found that I had to turn what it felt like more than 360 degrees to attain the 180 needed to be facing directly backwards. My body is not what I saw. Instead there was a smeary trail of after-images of myself going all the way from the bed to where I was. I consider the objective of seeing my body as accomplished.

I continued to examine my surroundings, a highly distorted RTZ. Sitting on a chair, next to a table that is not on my room at all I saw a skeleton, kind of cartoonish, extending its hand. I was calm and acknowledged its presence as normal. Not because I was losing lucidity, but because I understood it was after all my own mind creating it, so there was no need to question anything I saw.

I grabbed the skeleton’s hand, and it grabbed mine with reassuring strength. I looked at its missing eyeballs and although we did not, I felt as if we both nodded in complicity.

I turned around once more and looked for the door. I was surprised at finding that where the door should have been, there was nothing, not even the wall, not even an empty space. It was as if the wall had shortened and swallowed the door. Then I realised I was looking at the wrong wall, and assumed all that turning around just after standing up had confused my sense of orientation.

I looked at the skeleton once more, and it gave me something sticky, like sticky sweets. At this point I was losing my concentration. I found the door, and proceeded to walk through it, but my sense of vision did not follow my body. An intense sexual urge started growing in me, and as I tried to control it, I woke up.

I have to say that on my first lucid dream, back when I was a child, I encountered a skeleton to whom I asked if I was indeed dreaming. He acknowledged it and offered a cigarette. I refused it politely and woke up with a big smile on my face. I have remembered that skeleton every now and then during the years, but not in a long time, and today not but after analysing this last projection for a long half and hour.

Also, I’m sure there is no connection to that childhood experience because this time, upon waking up I instantly recognized the pattern on a shirt of mine hanging on a chair as having influenced my subconscious. It is not uncommon for me to have my real eyes open or half-open during a projection. How scary is that?

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OK, my brain is having fun without me. Last night I had at least two lucid dreams, but I remember almost nothing about them.

One of them was in a restaurant. The moment I entered and noticed the lights were out, I became lucid. I started to add lighting and people, and then I got distracted and it went back to being a normal dream. The problem is I barely remember the lucid part, although I do remember being distinctively lucid.

The other was in my home town, where I was flying around watching a multicoloured sky and being dragged around by “wind”.

Now I love Sundays, they’re a perfect chance to sleep in and experiment. All I have to do is learn to remember this stuff.

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This night I had three dreams I could remember. They were pretty crazy ones but nothing unusual. In one of them, though, I think there was something I should have noticed earlier.

Just before going to sleep, I did some meditation just for the sake of it. Minutes after starting, I began to feel my body vibrating, and soon after, I felt my arms had moved into an unnatural position. My elbows were both above my shoulders, both arms hanging down the sides of my head. There was nothing else to it though. The sensation faded rapidly. I went to sleep.

In this dream, a group of friends and I ran a club. We were either preparing to open or closing, I can’t remember. At one point, I was outside, talking with a friend in a park nearby. We were talking about some drugs she needed to get rid of when three guys appeared. One of them seemed to know us and wanted to start a fight for some reason I can’t remember.

Just as we got on our feet, one of them confronted me and looked straight into my eyes while swinging to the sides. He moved weirdly, and his elbows were bended just above his shoulders, arms hanging to the sides of his head. He just stood there, waiting.

I punched him in the face and woke up just as my fist hit the night table.

Not until late in the afternoon I realised that could’ve been my subconscious signalling me, giving me the chance to become lucid. And I punched it in the face.

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It seems the harder you try, the least results you get.

The same as yesterday, I have overslept way beyond what I should, but this time I’ve had 10 hours of sound sleep and I don’t even remember what I dreamt about. I have to stop trying at night and start taking short naps.

As I was lying in bed this morning trying to remember tonight’s dreams, something else has come to my mind. It was when I was 8 or 9. Many times I would wake up and find that as I moved, my vision wouldn’t follow. If I got up and walked, I would still see the ceiling above my bed. Some other time my vision would follow, but it was blurry and unresponsive, and worst of all, my body would not respond as I intended. Where these OBEs?

I don’t know how much of these memories have been influenced by yesterday’s events, but I do remember one very similar to yesterday’s OBE. I woke up during an evening nap and found I could drop to the floor and walk clumsily. I couldn’t see at all, but I could feel where the objects were around me in the room. Something was wrong, however, as sometimes I knew I was standing in the same spot as some piece of furniture. When that happened I felt very confused and snapped back to the couch.

I quickly suspected it was some strange dream. In one last attempt for science, I tried to move a plant pot to check it out later when I would woke up. Either my guessing of its location was wrong, or my “hand” was passing through it. Confusion again snapped me back and I finally woke up.

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