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True Spiritual Body: by Robert Crookall

Third Group of Experiences

True Spiritual Body: An Instrument of Perception at Transcendent or Spiritual Level, with Awareness of God

When consciousness operates through the True Spiritual “Body” men have direct awareness of God. Such experiences were cited and discussed by the present writer in The Interpretation of Cosmic and Mystical Experiences, James Clarke, 1969:

Dr. Winslow Hall felt “a conscious connection with all things – union with the All”, Dr. Raynor Johnson’s correspondent was “one with the Eternal, merged in the I AM”, William James’s informant felt “face to face with God”, J. H. Leuba’s “in the presence of God”, Dr. R. H. Ward realised, “God is here – He is in everything”, John Addington Symonds that “the Kingdom of God is within” and so on. These are “mystical” or true “Spiritual” experiences.

We suggest a helpful analogy. When total light is passed through a prism it appears as various colours, (a) violet, the shortest “waves”, (b) blue, (c) yellow and (d) red, the longest “waves”.

When total consciousness passes through man’s total body, it appears as various levels of consciousness (a) as Spiritual or mystical consciousness, with awareness of God, when passing through the true Spiritual “Body” which has an infinite number of “vibrations”, (b) as psychic or Soul consciousness, with awareness of other, including discarnate, Souls, when passing through the Soul Body, and (c) “normal” consciousness, with reason, scientific investigation, etc., when passing through the physical body.

In addition to this acting as instruments of consciousness on their appropriate levels, the denser and therefore less reactive bodies necessarily unveil or enshroud the higher and therefore more reactive bodies – the physical body enveils both the Soul Body and the Spiritual Body while the Soul Body enveils the Spiritual Body. Hence, during our physical embodiment we mortals, at best, obtain only partial and fleeting glimpses of the “higher” spheres – via the Soul Body, of Paradise, with its discarnate Souls, and via the Spiritual “Body” of Heaven, and of God (I Cor. xiii, 12).

A complication can occur in connexion with the electromagnetic portion of the physical body – the “vehicle of vitality”, via which the body received cosmic vital forces: with some persons, and under certain conditions (e.g., when drugged by soporifics, alcohol or anaesthetics) a significant portion of this bodily feature separates from the physical body to which it belongs, enshrouding the Soul Body and giving a “sub-normal” level of consciousness (with hallucinations and fantasies): the “sphere” contacted is the Hades of the Romans.


In The Study and Practice of Astral Projection we gave 160 cases, in Still More Astral Projections 222 cases, in Astral Projection and Survival 162 cases and in A Case Book of Astral Projection 178 cases.

Case No. 723: A doctor of medicine A medical man wrote from a highly-respected hospital: “I read with much interest your article on astral projection in the July issue of Fate magazine, 1970:

“A young man named George who was a member of my Church when I was a Presbyterian Minister (before I studied medicine) was a very good hypnotic subject [ = had a somewhat loose vehicle of vitality] . . . Once I hypnotised him with the specific object of exploring astral projection. I told him that he could leave his body and visit back home in the U.S.A. (We were in Alaska.) This he was able to do, and to see the town where his parents lived. [See other examples of this “travelling clairvoyance” below.] His parents had moved home since he had left them and he had never visited the house they now lived in.

“He went to the house and to the front door, but just went right through it. Room by room he described the contents and could even read a letter lying open on a dresser: but he could not pick it up and turn it over. Later letters confirmed the accuracy of his visit.” The doctor concluded:

“Your work is very interesting and you may have found a key to some of the puzzling things we do not know.”

Case No. 724: Mrs. M. Claxton Mrs. Claxton wrote as follows to Canon J. D. Pearce-Higgins:

“I am wondering if you can give me any possible explanation of the following. For my own part I don’t know whether I should not tell anyone of such things. I suppose they must happen for some purpose.

“I very rarely dream dreams but when I do, I know the difference between a ‘dream’ and another kind of experience. I stress this in case you think it was a dream.

“The other night I was going to sleep quite relaxed. The next thing I remember is that I was standing (although I was not conscious of having a body at any time) in space and I looked around and found that it was night. There was a lovely atmosphere and I was enjoying it . . . The next thing was that the night had disappeared and it was light. Then I felt the most glorious uplifting feeling, the true bliss described so many times in books you read written by mystics . . . but it became too much and I felt that if it lasted much longer I could not bear it. Then suddenly everything fell clean away from me and I was so free I could not believe it. I was freed from some binding something [the vehicle of vitality, which hitherto had enshrouded the Soul Body] which had previously held me down. This was followed by a great thump in my chest [ = repercussion] and I was lying in bed awake.

“I can only think that I died for a time. I feel almost sure of it. We all at some time or another come across people who are afraid to die and I just wondered if it might be of help at any time for anyone to be able to say how wonderful it is and something to look forward to and nothing to be afraid of at all. What do you think? Have you ever heard of anything happening to other people like it?”

Case No. 725: Dr. D. M. A. Leggett’s first case:

Dr. Leggett, Vice Chancellor of the University of Surrey, published this case, representing an experience told him by a friend: “I was wounded and in hospital. Though I had lost consciousness, I remember looking down on the body of someone who was severely wounded and whose wound had opened. I remember thinking that if the bleeding continued unchecked, the person concerned would rapidly bleed to death. Then – but not till then – I realised that the person at whose body I [released ‘double’] was looking was myself [physical body]. I then willed the ‘me’ who was in bed to press the bell and summon the nurse. This I did and nurse arrived in the nick of time.” [The released “double” carried little consciousness since the soldier was nearly dead and much of the released vehicle of vitality enshrouded the Soul Body.]

Case No. 726: Dr. Leggett’s second case:

A dentist told Dr. Leggett: “A patient, on coming round after being given ‘gas’, said that he had had the experience of looking down at ‘himself’ from a point near the ceiling while I extracted his tooth.

“Seeing my reaction of disbelief, the patient said, And to prove it, I tell you that on the top of that cupboard there are two pennies’. As the cupboard was tall and I was busy, I did nothing at the time and forgot all about my patient and what he had said.

“Some months later, when I remembered the incident, I climbed up to see what, if anything, was on top of the cupboard: there were, in fact, two pennies.” [This knowledge, by the patient, was “doubtless” obtained by observing from his released “double”: but it might, theoretically, be due to pure clairvoyance: however, the fact that he claimed to “look down” (as in innumerable projections) leaves little doubt that it was a projection.]

Case No. 727: Mrs. M. C. Wilke:

Mrs. Wilke wrote: “It has been my pleasure to read your article on Astral Projection and it was quite enlightening. Too often people who have had this experience attribute it to a dream caused by anaesthesia and are afraid to relate it to anyone for fear of scorn, ridicule or being made to feel they are insane. Now after reading your article I feel free to relate my experiences.

“While going through surgery I saw the doctors and nurses hovering over my body yet I was floating out of the window. I remember saying, ‘Well, they can’t hurt me now’ and I laughed as I looked down at them and saw my body lying there.”

Case No. 728: Mary L. H. Evans’s case:

Mary L, H. Evans told of a woman who “died” in hospital and found herself walking in sunshine towards a gate leading to a most lovely landscape, which filled her with eager joy. At the ‘gate’ she saw her first husband awaiting her; but as she drew near to join him, she saw and felt (rather than heard) him say to her, “No. Not yet. Go back.” She realised that it was for the sake of the sub-normal daughter, and she obeyed him, striving to hold on to her physical life again – her fear still was to have to leave the daughter unable to fend for herself in the world. It was a relief to her to be able to tell the story to me, who fully believed it. Her other acquaintances would not have done so.

“I have personally experienced the choice of leaving or returning to my work in the world during a crisis of illness, and think it is probably fairly common.”

Case No. 729: William Blake (1757-1827)

Wyatt Rawson drew attention to several of Blake’s psychic experiences.

(1) When his brother died, Blake saw his released spirit “ascend heavenwards” and he provided illustrations to Blair’s Grave depicting “the released second body lying horizontally a foot or two above the corpse”. Mr. Rawson observed, “This, as we learn from Dr. Crookall’s books, is the normal way in which the ‘double’ is released”.

(2) On at least one occasion Blake saw beneath him his own body and those of his wife and sister.

(3) In a letter to Hayley, on the death of his son, Blake wrote, “I know that our deceased friends are more really with us than when they were apparent to our mortal part . . . / lost a brother, and with his spirit I converse daily in the spirit”

Case No. 730: Richard Jefferies: Jefferies made two references to being out of the body18.


“Travelling in an instant across the distant sea, I saw, as if with actual vision, the palms and coconut trees of the extreme South ... as clear as the plain beneath.

“I looked at the hills ... In a moment all that was behind me. The house, etc., seemed to disappear and leave me alone. Involuntarily I drew a long breath, then I breathed slowly. My inner consciousness [Soul] went up through the illumined sky and I was lost in a moment of exaltation.”

Case No. 73: Freda G. H. Laycock This lady went to bed. She observed, “My body became numb and rigid [because the vehicle of vitality had, to a large extent, left it – incidentally disconnecting the Soul Body from it]. I became aware that I had left my body . . .

“I was deeply conscious and appeared to be wandering in a long distance of darkness [because the released vehicle of vitality enshrouded the Soul Body] . . . Then light [that of Paradise] was seen at the end of a long tunnel [ = shedding the enshrouding vehicle of vitality=the second ‘death’] and ineffable music and a living presence. I felt my whole being was about to be merged into this bliss when I returned to my body and was conscious of a thud in my chest [repercussion as the vehicle of vitality re-engaged with the body].” She asked, “Is this what all mortals must endure while crossing the border?” .

Case No. 732: Catherine M. Washburn Westall Mrs. Westall wrote from New York:

“One night in October, 1970, I was suddenly awakened by the sound of a small explosion in my room. I felt no presence and no fear. Our doors to the corridor were locked. All was quiet. I thought of the empty glass tumbler on my chest of drawers and wondered why it should explode. It was open end up when I put it there. I didn’t light the light to see – too sleepy, so I went back to sleep.

“In the morning, before my husband or anyone else had come in, I looked out, and there was the glass, shattered to slivers at the side of my bed, in the middle of the floor, some six to eight feet from the chest of drawers. If it had merely fallen, it would surely have broken when it hit the bare floor. It simply could not have rolled to eight feet and then broken with such violence into all those pieces. No slivers were near the chest. It must have been shot through the air to the middle of the floor where it broke on contact.

“I have had no repetition and no light on what it meant. There have been no deaths or disasters in my personal environs near that date. I never had a poltergeist before. If your readers can throw any light on this subject, I shall be happy to hear from them.

“When I recounted this experience to a friend, she was at once struck by its similarity to one narrated by S. Ralph Harlow15. In the course of a conversation, Harlow spoke of his sister, who had recently died. When he spoke her name, the heavy glass inkwell was sundered, with the sound of a report of a pistol, although none was there of course.

“Are there many cases which involve an explosion? If so, what explodes? – and why? More baffling still – how?”

The physical effect of shattering glass, in both cases, was doubtless due to electro-magnetic forces [from the vehicle of vitality] exteriorized from the body. The phenomenon is, of course, of the “poltergeist” type.

Case No. 733: Harwood Thompson’s friend This man was anaesthetised for an operation. He said, “All of a sudden, I found myself standing outside my body in the operating theatre. I could see my body on the table, and there seemed to be some sort of a ‘flap’ going on.

“Then the matron rushed out and returned with a glass ampule. She broke the top of it and jammed the ampule against my arm. The next thing I knew was when I woke up in bed. I told the matron what I had seen. She said, ‘That’s impossible – you were completely under the anaesthetic 1*.”

Case No. 734: Mr. Thompson Thompson’s daughter was away from home nursing wounded soldiers. He was anxious about her and wondered if he could “travel” and find out. “It conjured up a picture of my daughter and concentrated my mind on her. After a time I fell asleep and the next thing I knew it was morning. By the next day’s post I had a letter from my daughter – ‘Is Daddy all right? I had such a strange experience last night:

I fell asleep and all of a sudden I heard Daddy call me. I woke up and there was Daddy standing at the foot of the bed. Then he vanished.’ ” This was a case in which Mr. Thompson directed his attention and his Soul Body, released in sleep, travelled to that place.

Case No. 735: Mr. Thompson’s second experiment:

“Two years later, when our daughter was in the Air Force, I tried the experiment again. I had a vague idea of what the mansion where she was stationed looked like, so conjured up a picture in my mind and mentally tried to explore the grounds and then to find her.

“When I repeated the experiment several nights in succession, we had a letter from my daughter asking, Is Daddy trying his experiments again? Every night lately all of a sudden there is a cold wind [? ectoplasm from Mr. Thompson’s vehicle of vitality] blowing round my bed.’ ”

Case No: Dr. Joost A. M. Meerloo:

Dr. Meerloo, when a boy of six years, fell on his head and became unconscious of the physical world. He “awoke” to find a big man probing his skin with needles. He said, “Years later, when studying medicine, I realised that the doctor had been giving me a routine neurological ‘going-over’. But at the time ... I felt the goodwill and friendliness behind his formal manner [ = although physically unconscious, the boy had a telepathic experience – compare, e.g., Lord Geddes’ doctor-friend19, who “saw” his doctor “think”; Mrs. Jeffrey20 observed, “You hear what people are saying to each other and what they are thinking at the same time – it is amusing, for they do not say what they think! ” Mrs. Garrett, in New York, left her body and visited Newfoundland, conducting experiments with a doctor. She stated, “The doctor walked to his bookcase in his room. Before he reached it I knew that he was thinking of a certain book: this was telepathy. He took it down and opened it ... I was able to receive, from his mind, the telepathic impression of what he read.” Percy Cole21, anaesthetised, “saw the doctor’s thoughts – he was afraid I might slip through his fingers”.] His new sensitivity has continued throughout his life.

Dr. Meerloo stated, “To only a few friends did I dare mention my awareness of the intrusion of other people’s feelings into mine”. He has a “compulsion to identify with someone who was ill and this especially when that other person emanates an intimation of danger . . . Usually it triggers off the need to do something.” [Compare Zoe Richmond22, who, in England, described another doctor’s urges to help. “There is ... a curious sense of the necessity to obey an impression . . . the impression seems to convey an intention of loosening the distress of impending trouble ... It is difficult to see where the source of this intention lay, unless the doctor’s general relationship to people and willingness to serve them caused a special sensitivity to such warnings.” Dr. Gertrude Schmedler23 similarly said, in U.S.A., that “Openness to the world and to oneself” influences the occurrence of psychic experiences: in telepathy the agent tends to be characterised by openness, the recipient by warmth and need for human contact. In point of fact, Dr. Meerloo stated, “I am open”.]

The origin of Dr. Meerloo’s E.S.P. in a fall on the head calls to mind the supposed origin of the (“physical”) mediumship of the Italian, Eusapia Paladino24 – she had a peculiar depression of her parietal bone caused by an accident when a child. This area gave off a kind of “breeze” (? ectoplasm). Mollie Fancher, an American, when a girl, had two serious accidents: she exhibited, among other psychical phenomena, the special type of “astral” projection which is called travelling clairvoyance, i.e., seeing at a distance and reporting back through the (partially vacated) physical body25.

Case No. 737: Harold Owen

Owen’s experience26 occurred when he was eight years old. He said, “I became petrified [ = cataleptic, because his vehicle of vitality was, to a considerable extent, projected from his body], standing on the stairs with one foot off the ground.

“An unseen thing was there [his extruded vehicle of vitality had enabled him and the ‘thing* to be aware of each other], something menacing, utterly unphysical and ... so terribly dangerous that I felt with clear and absolute knowledge that here was something . . . realised with a clarity and a vision brought to me by a new sense [the extruded vehicle of vitality providing a ‘bridge* between the two] I had not before possessed. It was as if I had plunged out of this world into the Hades world that surrounds it] and I literally saw from the projected ‘double’] my own body poised with one :oot on the landing . . .”

Case No. 738: Attila von Szalay:

Raymond Bayless27 satisfied himself of the genuineness of the phenomena – paranormal photographs, raps, lights and voices, and astral projections – of Mr. von Szalay, who is evidently strongly mediumistic. Since childhood, he has projected hundreds of times (which is not surprising).

Ninety-eight per cent of the projections were on earth, but sometimes he enters the Hades realm – a gloomy, twilight realm, i.e., when his “double” is composite. On one occasion, when gliding along, he suddenly “blacked out”, momentarily losing consciousness, i.e., the enveiling vehicle of vitality was shed from his originally composite “double” and he now had a “helper” and saw “an exquisite landscape” – that of Paradise. But this was only a glimpse and not a full entrance into Paradise conditions. It was as though he was outside in darkness [Hades] looking into the scene [Paradise]. The people who inhabited this beautiful realm were “radiant with light” – they, or rather their unenshrouded Soul Bodies, “seemed to be made of light”. The trees and grass also were radiant with light.

The above are, of course, typical descriptions of the dim Hades realm and the bright Paradise spheres. There is no reasonable doubt that the deponent has “been there” – contacting two objective, non-phvsical environments via two objective, non-physical bodies, i.e., first a “double” that was composite and later one that was simple, consisting of the Soul Body only. Mrs. von Szalay’s first-hand descriptions are given under No. 772.

Case No. 739: Miss S. Ridgway:

Miss Ridgway had two projections. In the first, 15 years ago, she was exhausted (which condition, in an effort to recuperate by obtaining cosmic vitality, releases part of the vehicle of vitality) and slept. She said, “I became conscious but was absolutely paralysed – my body refused to obey my mental commands. I [‘double’] seemed to be up near the ceiling. I wasn’t able to see myself on the bed – or anything. I just “felt” I was there (not imagined).” (The released Soul Body was evidently very considerably enshrouded by the released vehicle of vitality.)

Her second projection occurred six months ago. “I became conscious, in the middle of the night, that I [‘double’] was standing by the wall in my bedroom. Immediately I thought, ‘Oh, marvellous! I’ve got outside my body! I’ll see if I can get across the Seven Seas! ’ Mentally concentrating, I found myself going over the sea. Everything was very grey [Soul Body much enshrouded by vehicle of vitality, therefore contacting Hades conditions]. I couldn’t keep up the necessary concentration and, in a flash, I was back in my body.”

Case No. 740: Eva Burton’s “communicator”:

“After a person has died, when his psychic body [ = vehicle of vitality plus his Soul Body] have gone out of his physical body, there is still a fine thread of electric vibration [the ‘silver cord*-extension] connecting the three bodies just as a child is still connected by a cord of his mother, until this cord is cut ... It takes at least a day, and usually two, to develop the power to cut this thread. Until it is cut, the physical body has feelings [ = there is possibility of dual consciousness – awareness both of this world and the next].”

Case No. 741: St. Augustine:

St. Augustine told of a doctor who doubted survival: he had a “dream” in which he met a man who took him to a “city” where there was beautiful music [ = Paradise conditions]. Later, in another “dream”, he again met this man, who said, “Do you know me?” “Very well,” the doctor replied. “How?” asked the man. The doctor described all he had been shown on his previous visit. The man assured him that he would survive death, seeing and hearing in a similar manner – “Do not doubt that there is a life after the present one.”

Case No. 742: Mrs. I. Guhasy:

Mrs. Guhasy, originally from Puerto-Rico, wrote (in litt.,) from Great Falls, Montana, U.S.A., as follows: “I have some real trouble and thought you might help me. I started to have these experiences about seven years ago. The first few times I didn’t know what it was. I was taking a nap when all of a sudden I tried to get up and couldn’t [ = catalepsy because a significant portion of the ‘semiphysical’ electro-magnetic vehicle of vitality – the ‘bridge’ via which we control our bodies – was projected]. Here I was, aware of noises. I was able to see my kids but, at the same time could not open my eyes. I struggled to wake up and finally was able to do so. This occurred, on and off, for two years: it always happened when I took a nap in the afternoon. One day I saw my body just lying in bed, and, at the same time, I knew that was not the real me.

“Sometimes somebody would come into the room and that would cause me to get scared and I would go into my body too fast, and that would make a strange noise [‘click’, ‘plop’, etc., due to repercussion].

“After a long time I became used to these experiences and I didn’t think much of them. Sometimes I would wonder why, but I never tried to find out. I must say at this point that I have had mediumistic experiences [which are due to a loose and projectable vehicle of vitality], but nothing too deep: I have gone into a trance, or something like it, but I have never been able to lose consciousness.

“Now comes the second part of my story. About eighteen months ago I became very aware when I went out of my body. By then I knew a little bit more about it and, for the first time, was really able to realise what was happening. Then I had a ‘dream’ in which I saw myself [‘double’] come out of my body and float around the room. Then, for the first time, I went out of my room. I tried to walk, but couldn’t. It was very strange. This kept happening and I kind of took it for granted: for one thing, it was not unpleasant, though by this time I was really anxious to find out why this was happening to me so often.

“Then, last summer, I had some real good ones. I went out of the house and just floated around. It was a very nice feeling and I became conscious that I could float far away – to another city or so. But something happened each time I became more aware of coming out of my body. I got this sick feeling all over me like some strong vibrations like electricity [=:the ‘vibraitons’, ‘tingle’, etc., due to the rapidly-vibrating vehicle of vitality leaving the slowly-vibrating physical body]. It didn’t feel good at all. I started getting scared of that feeling and the thought that somebody could touch me while I was like that was terrifying.

“All my experiences were natural – they just happened. I was never able to control them at all. In the last four times my heart was beating real hard. I had awful cramps in the stomach [? solar plexus] and the next day I was very weak. I have come to dread the thing, yet there is nothing I can do to stop it for good. Please could you help me? What can I do? I hope you don’t think I’m crazy. I am very normal otherwise, but I can’t talk about this subject to anyone. No one would believe me, anyway.

“I hope that you can suggest some good books on the subject. In fact, I have never read anything on that except your article [in Fate Magazine, 1971] and a book by Susy Smith.”

I suggested to the writer – whose experiences were obviously genuine – that she had a somewhat loose vehicle of vitality (on which account she was a potential medium), that she would be be wise (a) to avoid increasing that tendency by deliberate passivity (especially by attending seances, using ouija-boards or engaging in “automatic” writing); (b) to decrease it by positive thoughts and feelings connected with the physical world and among people, that she should deliberately and perseveringly improve the physical health by (a) proper meals (well-balanced, i.e., always including proteins such as meat, eggs, cheese, milk and vitamins obtainable from fresh fruits and vegetables); (b) proper relaxation and rest; (c) avoiding sedatives, including sleeping pills, drugs and alcohol. All who show signs of a loose vehicle should overcome it by these means.

Case No. 743: Dr. R. W. Laidlaw’s patient:

Dr. Laidlaw told of one of his patients, a mother, who began: “I haven’t wanted to tell anyone about this because it seems so utterly strange – but it did happen ... I [released ‘double’] was suddenly about twenty feet up in the air, looking down on myself [physical body] sitting on the bench. I could see myself and the children in detail and the landscape as ordinarily seen . . . then, suddenly I was back in my own body again.” The doctor observed, “Here was something which was brand-new, somewhat disquieting, and yet completely real to my patient. It made a lot of difference to her when I told her that this wasn’t the first time that this sort of experience had happened and that books were written about it.”

Case No. 744: Mrs. D. King:

Mr. King, of Leyland, near Preston, wrote (in litt.,): “I hope you don’t mind my writing to you. I have written a similar letter to the Society for Psychical Research but received no reply. I must stress that the following information is completely true . . .

“I have read your Techniques of Astral Projection, Aquarian Press, 1964, and tried various methods of producing projections without any success.

“My wife was not interested in the subject, so I hardly discussed it with her. Occasionally, while I was relating on the bed (trying to ‘get out’ of my body) she would also try it. On May 16th, 1971, my wife told me she had projected around the bedroom and seen herself and me lying on the bed. She said our bodies [released ‘doubles’] had a golden ‘aura’ about one inch thick around them, while our physical bodies appeared dull. The rest of the colours in the room appeared to be very bright.

“After that date, she became enthusiastic about the subject and achieved a projection on June 4th, 1971. She described: 1 floated through the wall dividing the front and back bedrooms and observed, from the back bedroom window, a round ball, grey in colour, stationary over the roof-tops [? a “spirit-light”, i.e., an incipient materialisation – see the writer’s book, The Jung-Jaffe View of Out-of-the-Body experiences29 and Cases No. 745, 767, 768]. I got the impression of being watched by it. I then returned to my body.

“In her next success, June 27, 1971, she described: ‘I floated to the same position as before and again saw the ‘globe’. I tried to approach the object and returned to my bed.’

“My wife, previous to her first projection, had never heard of an ‘aura’, or that things would appear brighter. Neither had she read any books on it. She probably had heard me talk of the ‘silver cord’ (which she saw) but, apart from that, she just wasn’t interested. So the knowledge couldn’t have come from her sub-conscious. Is it safe to practise it? I feel my wife may have progressed if she hadn’t lost interest.”

On October 24th, 1971, Mrs. King wrote: “I write in response to your request for information re the ‘silver cord’. It appeared as a shimmering silver line, about if8th inch thick, attached to my stomach, just above the navel [=solar plexus – she has the mediumistic bodily constitution – compare Cases No. 742, 748]”

Case No. 745: Steven Recchia:

Recchia, eighteen years old, said (in litt.,): “Yesterday I purchased two books on astral projection – your Out-of-the- Body Experiences. A Fourth Analysis, 1970 and Robert Monroe’s Journeys Out of the Body, Doubleday, 1971 (our Case No. 749). Of the two, I have read your Preface. I have also read Don Juan and Autobiography of a Yogi. I read these books after my experience.

“In July, 1969, I was living in Greenwich Village. I have lived in New York all my life. I had tickets for a concert. About two hours before the show I had taken some LSD – I had taken it maybe fifty times before because it made me feel peaceful.

“But, when it started coming on that Saturday night, I felt very strange. I started hearing voices of the people around me but none were speaking. When I left my house and started down the stairs, I heard people talking in the apartments I walked by. It was super-amplified voices. I never went inside the show. I saw flames coming out of the concert hall and the sky turned red. I thought we were under nuclear attack. I started walking, then blackness [a ‘blackout’ as the vehicle of vitality was shed from the hitherto composite double, i.e., as it passed through the second ‘death’] followed by the appearance of four or five light bodies [ = ‘spirit lights’, cf. Cases No. 744, 767, 768]. I can’t describe their size. Their shape was sort of oval. I was not aware of any physical being. We communicated. There are no words for it [ = telepathy]. I saw my entire life flash by me [ = the first, non-emotional, non-responsible review of the past life as the vehicle of vitality is stripped from the body].

“I said, 7 want to go back! ’ [ = directed attention towards body]. But I was back before I said it. I might add that, wherever I was, it was timeless . . .

“I would like to leave my body again, but without drugs. I can’t understand why I wanted to come back. Write and tell me what you think. I declare that everything I have written is true.”
I advised the writer to (1) leave drugs alone, (2) study the subject, (3) welcome any experiences that come unsought,(4) not deliberately to seek them.

Case No. 746: Robert Brocato:

Brocato {in litt., November 5, 1970) told me of projections he had had during the last two years. He is a Master of Science and his investigations suggested that *‘Potentially good projection subjects can be detected by analysing a person’s sleeping habits and mode of dreaming”. He considers that about 3% of Europeans can easily project if they tried. “Bodily metabolism not only dictates whether one will be a projector, but also reveals, through the mode of dreaming which the metabolism allows, if one is in the condition in which he might be a projector. The metabolism can be changed by diet, etc. [including certain drugs].

“I do not try to ‘force’ projections but I do try to provide the conditions by which a projection will occur.”

Case No. 747: W. H. Bradley:

Mr. Bradley observed {in litt.,): “I have been an inveterate astral traveller since childhood. When I recently picked up a back issue of Fate for September 1970, I read your article on astral projection and wondered if one of your theories. while probably correct enough in its essence, is not subject to exception. I refer to the theory that, when the astral [body] goes gadding off in its more solid form [with much of the vehicle of vitality] it finds itself restricted from passage through walls.

“In two instances that I was able to verify later, I was seen in my ‘astral’ form. One involved a ‘trip’ from Hawaii to Mexico. A letter from a lady I visited in that manner begged me not to do it again. I had scared her. What convinces me that I take a rather solid form at times is another, recent, incident. I take afternoon naps, and these seem almost invariably to result in involuntary ‘astral’ journeys. On one such occasion I found myself in a garden in what I took to be China. There was a brick wall and a willow-tree. Working in the garden was an old Chinese. I noted his deeply lined face and the fact that several of his front teeth were missing. I returned to my body (in British Columbia) with a slight jolting sensation that usually accompanies the rejoining of my astral and physical bodies [N.B. – especially when the ‘astral’ body includes much of the vehicle of vitality= reunion causes repercussion]. I opened my eyes and immediately closed them again. I still saw the face of the elderly Chinese gentleman . . . Now I am familiar with the phenomenon of the retained retinal image but, to the best of my knowledge, this is restricted to the physical body. [The phenomenon was due to the ‘semi-physical’ nature of the vehicle of vitality]. It seems to me that I must have had a pretty substantial portion of myself with me at that time. [This type of phenomenon connects the denser astral projections with witchcraft.]

“The Colorados Indians of Ecuador, S.A., have a drug they take from the root of the bajuca vine: it produces trance. Returning from a ‘trip’, an Indian told us of a dock fire at Callas, Peru, giving details. That evening I heard the news on the radio in Santo Domingo.”

Case No. 748: Peter van Muyden:

Van Muyden, of Traverse City, Michigan, said (in lift.,): “I have had many out-of-the-body experiences and only one time have I succeeded with proof of many witnesses. I want to be sure and not just accept psychic things on a weak basis. My last experience I wrote up and partly told to two doctors. I say ‘partly’ – I am afraid to be ridiculed . . .

“I am since [sic] three years an American citizen and have still loads of trouble to write a decent English letter, so please accept my apologies for this.

“On March 19, 1971, 1 broke my ankle. I was put on the operating-table. On April 4 I was very depressed, feeling that my death was near. On the 5th I felt much better and did leg-lifts as my doctor had told me. Suddenly there was an explosion in my chest [? solar plexus]. The room went out of focus [ = ‘blackout’ in consciousness as the double separated from the body] and, before I knew, I was out of my body in a golden-yellowish vapour, standing by the window, about two metres from my body . . . Then I was sucked back, as by a vacuum, in my body. This repeated three times . . . The doctor told me to relax, as if he thought I was just imagining the attack. An E.C.G., however, showed the heart- attack. Lesley, a friend came and noticed that I was out of breath. I told her that I had had this condition since my operation.

“On the Monday the doctor asked me if I felt like fainting after the attack? I answered, ‘No – like dying!’ He asked, ‘How do you know what dying feels like?' I told him that I was out of my body and he stopped asking questions. I know for sure he thought I was a nut.

“On Friday, April 9, at 2 a.m., I found myself sitting up in bed, my right arm pushing against my left arm. I fainted. When I came through, I saw a doctor by my bedside and asked him who he was? He told me he was Dr. ‘S’, replacing Dr. ‘H. I must have fainted again and woke up when I was put on a stretcher with loads of people around me. Suddenly everything went out of focus [ = 'blackout’ in consciousness as the ‘double’ separated from the body] and I was floating face to face with my physical body. I looked at myself without any emotion [^regarded the physical body with indifference]. When we came at the room with the oxygen unit, I was gliding from the stretcher and the ‘other me’ [released ‘double’] stayed on the theshold and was watching the technicians around my physical body.

“The most beautiful ‘dream’ or experience I ever had began with the feeling that I had travelled at an enormous speed and was suddenly in a beautiful peaceful park [=Paradise conditions]. I had a feeling that I had entered the park after I had left a kind of building, a station [ = ‘gate’, ‘a door’, a ‘barrier’, etc., see Jung’s Cases No. J54, *]6o, 762, JJ8, i.e. after passing through the second ‘death’, shedding the vehicle of vitality from the originally composite ‘double’, thus leaving Hades and entering Paradise – which numerous ‘communicators’ say happened to them some three days after their physical deaths]. There was an enormous lake surrounded by high trees and a beautiful blue sky. I felt happy and peaceful. I was surprised, alone but not lonely.

“The lake had seven bright-coloured plankiers [docks?] I rested on the first ‘dock’. The ‘water* was very dark and, on the surface, a slow-moving vapour. There was complete silence. While I could not see anybody, I had a strong feeling that I was surrounded by lots of people who went through me and I through them. [This was doubtless a glimpse backwards of Hades.]

“When I arrived on the yellow dock, I felt someone was at my right hand but could not see him. I asked (I think without using my voice) – i.e., by telepathy, ‘Who are you?' and I heard a warm, metal, tinkling voice [a description which suggests those obtained apparently super-normally by Dr. K. Raudive, recorded on magnetic tapes, and described in Breakthrough, published in 1970 by Colin Smythe], ‘I am your guide: I am appointed to take care of you’. I asked, ‘Am I dead?* He replied, ‘You mean physically dead? – No! ‘

“We walked over a bridge to the last, seventh green dock and sat down. I asked, ‘Where am I?’ He answered (in a voice full of love), ‘In a mental sphere – you could call it a waiting-room [numerous ‘communicators’ use this term when describing a sphere that is intermediate between earth and Paradise, a sphere in which newly-dead Souls wait for a time before moving on to their more permanent place in the after-death spheres, the ‘many mansions’]. In front of us was an enormous building with big doors. He called it ‘Gate’ – ‘We are waiting for the decision – they are deciding if you have to live longer or stay with us.’ I asked, ‘Why cannot I see you?’ He laughingly said, ‘Look at yourself!’ I looked down where I expected my body but could not see anything other than a silvery cord – sometimes it looked light blue – attached to where my navel had to be [i.e., the solar plexus – typical of ‘doubles’ that contain much of the vehicle of vitality – compare Mrs. D. King, Case No. 744]. I looked to the left where it went and saw . . . myself lying in the oxygen-tent in the hospital. After a while, I heard my guide say, ‘You have to go back and live!’ I felt as if sucked away, as by a vacuum, at first slowly, then at enormous speed . . . and looked into the face of the nurse.” [It is surely significant that Case No. 789 and many others used the word “sucked” back to describe the pull of the released “double” by the vacated body – compare The Supreme Adventure, 1961, p.175, The Study and Practice of Astral Projection, 1961,

Cases No. 52, 105, and More Astral Projections, 1964, Cases No. 287, 291, 360, 368.

It is one of many answers to those who have suggested – without adducing evidence – that all descriptions of the “silver cord” by astral projectors, etc., had been copied from Ecclesiastes: Mr. van Muyden has only recently learned English.]

Case No. 749: Robert Monroe.

Monroe devoted a book (Journeys Out of the Body30) to his projections. Like Muldoon, he evidently has a loose vehicle of vitality: as his “double” was loosening further and getting free from his body he felt “vibrations” or “tingles”, rather like “an electric shock” and felt cramp at the solar plexus, then he heard “a hissing sound” in his head and felt “cold winds”, all electro-magnetic (or ectoplasmic) phenomena, due to forces in the vehicle of vitality. He found that rhythmic breathing aided the projections, metals were inimical to them. Eventually, a “semi-physical” substance which resembled “grey mist” or “grey chiffon” left his body and occasionally he felt as if passing through water.

The newly-released (and composite) “double” had “semi physical” properties – when he pinched a person’s physical body, the person concerned not only felt an effect but the pinch left red marks on the skin. Also, as with Muldoon, this (composite) double made movements that were identical with those of its physical counterpart.

The environment contacted via the composite “double” was the dim “semi-physical” Hades aura of the earth, with some “hinderers”, again as with Muldoon.

As with Muldoon and most (but not quite all) other mediumistically constituted projectors, Monroe’s (originally composite) “double” passed through the equivalent of the second “death” of “communicators” – he learned “the trick” of passing through the early, dim (Hades) conditions (by shedding the vehicle of vitality that enshrouded the Soul Body) and contacted Paradise conditions (which, instead of “hinderers” contained “helpers”). All essential details given by Mr. Monroe are identical with those of Muldoon and others.

Case No. 750: Kelvin Stevens.

Stevens, aged seventeen, wrote (in litt.,) from Manchester on August 5, 1971: “In Fate Magazine, December, 1970, you asked for reports of O.B.E.’s I have had more than seven over the past year or so and after each projection I have wrote [sic] down all the detailes [sic]. All were at night.

“This is my best O.B.E., which I had on August 11, 1970. It was a fully conscious projection. I had gone to bed and was thinking about projection. I lay on my back, closed my eyes and thought of moving up, out of my body. Right away I felt a slight tingling all over my body [ = vehicle of vitality separating – compare Monroe, Case No. J49, and many others]. I then thought of moving up again and I felt a wonderful warm vibration go through me like shivers going up my spine. I now was rising and floating away from my body. I went to the end of the bed and hovered in the air. I knew [sic] that I was out of my body and felt very light, free, unaffected [sic] by gravity. I am fully conscious – in fact, more than usual. I felt what it was like to be really alive. I was very excited and wanted to get out of my bedroom and fly away. Then I thought I would fall – and did so. I thought I would hurt myself but did not. Instead, a blackness came [the ‘blackout’ in consciousness which occurred when the released ‘double’ was re-associating with the body – just as it often occurs when they are separating at the commencement of a projection: these experiences, of course, indicate an objective double and not one that was merely imagined as is supposed by many students of these matters]. I felt a slight tingling [the same sensation as when the electro-magnetic vehicle of vitality was leaving the body] and, with that, I was back in my body. The reason why I did not fly away from my bedroom was because I did not believe I could go through my bedroom wall – while out, I still think, etc., as if I was still in my physical body. My belief [sic] that I could not get through the wall made it all the more solid.

“Third Group of Experiences: True Spiritual Body: An Instrument of Perception at Transcendent or Spiritual Level, with Awareness of God” is an extract from What Happens When You Die by Robert Crookall, published by White Crow Books. 

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The Only Planet of Choice: Visitations – Many people use the word ‘Alien’ to describe a visitor from outer space. Extra terrestrial is another word, which is rather more user friendly. For the sake of the question and answer format, the word used by the questioner has been left, though even Tom questions our use of‘Alien’. Should we wish to foster openess between all beings of the Universe perhaps we should also look at our vocabulary? In a discussion between Andrew and Tom many years earlier, Andrew had asked Tom about UFOs and whether they were created manifestations. Tom had replied: “Many of the flying things that you call UFOs come from our place, but they come from other places also, and they do come in physical form. But many of them are not physical. They are like your movie screen”. Read here
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